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Rays prospects and winter leagues: Franco hits offseason homer

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The Rays had three more players begin offseason play last week.

Adam Sanford

The biggest minor league news wasn’t in Arizona last week but off the field. Baseball America’s J.J. Cooper reported on MLB’s stunning proposal to reshape the minor leagues. It’s important to note that it’s part of an ongoing negotiation, so the changes described aren’t guaranteed to take place. However, even changes that aren’t quite that drastic would change hundreds of careers and dozens of communities.

Hitters

2B Jonathan Aranda, Liga Mexicana del Pacífico

This week: 1 AB, 1 K
Offseason: 1 AB, .000/.000/.000

Aranda only batted twice for his offseason club last year, so he’s already halfway there.

2B Vidal Brujan, Arizona Fall League

This week: 9 AB, 1 R, 1 H, 4 BB, 4 K, 1/1 SB
Offseason: 72 AB, .278 BA/.384 OBP/.514 SLG

Brujan is in his first slump of the offseason, but he did walk four times in three games.

SS Wander Franco, Liga de Béisbol Profesional de la República Dominicana

This week: 22 AB, 2 R, 4 H, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3 K
Offseason: 26 AB, .192/.192/.308

If Franco struggles this offseason, it shouldn’t be a surprise. This will be his longest season, and the competition he’s facing is probably the toughest he’s seen in his career. Still, he hit a home run, and he’s so good that he could easily adjust, settle in, and go on a tear.

C Ronaldo Hernandez, AFL

This week: 9 AB, 1 R, 2 H, 1 K
Offseason: 35 AB, .314 BA/.351 OBP/.486 SLG

OF Josh Lowe, AFL

This week: 5 AB, 1 BB, 3 K, 1/1 SB
Offseason: 52 AB, .327 BA/.379 OBP/.558 SLG

C Michael Perez, LIDOM

This week: 7 AB, 2 H, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 3 K
Offseason: 7 AB, .286/.286/.429

Perez didn’t get as many at-bats as expected with the Rays this season, but the opportunity could be there next year.

Pitchers

RHP Shane Baz, AFL

This week: 2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
Offseason: 10 IP, 8.10 ERA, 1.90 WHIP

Baz started for the first time this offseason.

RHP Simon Rosenblum-Larson, AFL

This week: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K
Offseason: 8 23 IP, 3.12 ERA, 1.85 WHIP

LHP Cristopher Sanchez, LIDOM

This week: one-third IP, 2 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
Offseason: 1 23 IP, 16.20 ERA, 2.40 WHIP

Sanchez had a rough week, first not recording an out in an appearance and then allowing three runs in one-third of an inning.

RHP Luis Santos, LIDOM

This week: 1 13 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K
Offseason: 1 13 IP, 0.00 ERA, 2.25 WHIP

Santos may soon depart in minor league free agency, but he’s still presently a member of the organization.

RHP Drew Strotman, AFL

This week: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K
Offseason: 17 IP, 7.41 ERA, 1.47 WHIP

After a couple rough outings, Strotman turned in a solid start last week.

RHP Alex Valverde, AFL

This week: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K
Offseason: 9 IP, 1.00 ERA, 0.78 WHIP

Valverde finally allowed his first run this offseason, but he’s still had a solid campaign so far.

All stats are through games of Oct. 19.