MAY 10th, 2013-As we've had ample opportunity to see our new players this year out of the Royals system, I think it's important that we remember the guys we knew from the final year of our Astros affiliation, as well. Many of you are probably keeping tabs on them, but I wanted to post a quick update on their progress this year, along with their current team and stats.
Here's an update on some of the fellas we had with us in 2012, this post covering the Class A Quad Cities River Bandits:
Jesse Wierzbicki, 1B
29 games, 131 PA, 21 R, 30 H, 8 2B, 2 3B, 3 HR, 24 RBI, 3 SB, 14 BB, .273 BA, .374 OBP
Jesse is in the beginning of his first full year at Class A, having spent the bulk of 2012 at Tri-City (Low-A, Short Season, NY-Penn League), and is certainly acquitting himself well thus far. With 24 RBI in 29 games, along with 8 doubles and 21 runs scored, Wierzbicki is proving to be quite the run producer for the River Bandits. Granted, he is old for the level (24), but if he continues on his current pace he's not likely to spend a lot longer in the Midwest. With his size and eye at the plate, he could light up the California League with the JetHawks.
Teoscar Hernandez, CF
28 games, 135 PA, 23 R, 34 H, 8 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR, 15 RBI, 9 SB, .281 BA
Hernandez was only with us for 8 games in 2012 as he spent the bulk of the year in the GCL. At only 20 years old, he is more than holding his own with the Bandits; eight doubles are more a reflection of his speed than his power, but either way a double's a double. He is a perfect 9-for-9 in steals, and stole 11 in 59 total games in 2012. He has consistently shown good judgment in swiping bags since he made his pro debut in 2011, and is now 36-for-41 in steals for his career. He should end up pilfering 25 bags this year, and 30 is not out of the question.
Roberto Pena, C
18 games, 79 PA, 13 R, 25 H, 4 2B, 2 HR, 11 RBI, .352 BA, .883 OPS
Pena has spent parts of the past three seasons with the Legends, and made his High-A debut last year. At first glance I wasn't sure he would be any more than a 2nd or even 3rd-string catcher at the higher levels, but he's continuing to develop some pop and his .352 average in 18 games so far has me wondering if he could exceed those expectations. It's still too early to tell for sure, but he's ahead of the curve in 2013.
Mitchell Lambson, LHP
0-1, 1.32 ERA, 8 G, 13 2/3 IP, 7 HA, 6 BB, 12 K
One of my favorite players in the Astros system, Lambson has rolled the competition in 2013. He spent nearly all of 2012 with Lexington, recording a 2.72 ERA in 36 1/3 IP, so his early performance with Quad Cities should be no surprise to those who saw him with the Legends. The lefty with the wicked change-up could be climbing the ladder before the All-Star Break.
In my next post I'll be jumping to the High-A Lancaster JetHawks, where most of last year's Legends now reside. Stay tuned.