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Getting Familiar: Matthew Moore, Albert Suarez and Others

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Most of the offseason focus has been on the Major League club and rightfully so. With pitchers and catchers reporting in less than three weeks we are almost ready to turn our full attention toward the 2009 season. However before we do that, I wanted to take a look at some of the lower levels of the minor leagues and see what pitchers we could be talking about soon as the Price/Davis/Hellickson group continues to work through the upper levels of the organization. Here are a few guys who popped out to me, at least on the 2008 Rookie League-Princeton Devil Rays.

Name

K/9

BB/9

K/BB

HR/9

ERA

FIP

Matthew Moore

12.8

3.15

4.05

0

1.66

1.6

Kyle Ayers

7.03

0.84

8.33

0.56

4.5

2.9

Albert Suarez

7.63

1.44

5.29

0.62

3.92

3

Joseph Cruz

10.3

2.33

4.43

0.83

3.17

3

Chris Luck

8.75

2

4.38

0.75

2.25

3.2

  • Matt Moore is a stud in waiting. At age 19 he already throws 92-95 MPH and has a curveball that scouts love. He sported a 64% GB rate and did not give up a home run in 54.1 IP in 2008. Expect him to be in Bowling Green in 2009.
  • Albert Suarez is another 19 year old starter who is rising up some prospect lists. While his K/9 isn't as dominating, his 5.29 K/BB was the best of any Princeton starter. Like Moore, his GB rate was solid at 59%.
  • Joseph Cruz is not as good as the other two starters on this list, but a 10.3 K/9 and 4.43 K/BB is nothing to shy away from. A year older than Moore and Suarez, Cruz has a tendency to give up the long ball. He gave up five home runs in 54 innings and all of them to right handed batters.
  • Kyle Ayers was a 2007 draft pick and has pitched well in relief for Princeton over the past two seasons. He is a solid 6'4, 220 pounds and like most of the others on this list is 19 years old. His K/BB rate of 8.33 was second best in the entire organization behind Jeremy Hellickson's ridiculous 15.0 at Montgomery. He's walked just 11 batters is 64.1 career innings. The knock on him is he's hitable. In 2008 he's H/9 was a whopping 12.96.
  • Chris Luck, like Ayers, is a 2007 draft pick and pitched his second season of relief for Princeton in 2008. In 2007 his K/9 was 10.37, but dropped to 8.75 in 08. However, this BB/9 also dropped raising his K/BB from 3.58 to 4.38. He seems to be somewhat of a ROOGY at this point. In 2008 his FIP vs LHB was 3.63, but just 2.01 against RHB.