Kansas City’s next wave of young talent is now just one step from the majors, as the Royals promoted top prospects Wil Myers and Jake Odorizzi from Double-A to Triple-A.
Myers struggled at Double-A last season, hitting just .253 with eight homers in 99 games, but the outfielder still ranked 28th on Baseball America‘s annual prospect list coming into this season and annihilated Texas League pitching while repeating the level. He hit .343 with 13 homers and 11 doubles in 35 games, producing an incredible .731 slugging percentage and 1.146 OPS to force the promotion at age 21.
Odorizzi ranked 68th on that same Baseball America list coming into the season and the 22-year-old right-hander made seven starts at Double-A with a 3.32 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 38 innings, showing the promise that made him a first-round pick in 2008.
So far the Royals’ historic prospect collection hasn’t resulted in big-league wins, but Myers and Odorizzi both project as impact players and the major leaguers have shown some signs of life recently by winning six of their last seven games.
The Diamondbacks announced on Monday that starter Shelby Miller has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with right elbow inflammation. Miller will get a second opinion on his elbow on Tuesday, per MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert. Pitcher Silvino Bracho has been called up from Triple-A Reno to take Miller’s spot on the roster.
Miller, 26, left Sunday’s start with what was described at the time as forearm tightness. Through his first four starts, Miller is carrying a 4.09 ERA with a 20/12 K/BB ratio in 22 innings.
Bracho, 24, has pitched quite well in 6 2/3 innings of relief at Reno. He’s given up just one unearned run on four hits and a walk (intentional) with 12 strikeouts.
Archie Bradley figures to take Miller’s spot in the starting rotation as Bracho will work middle relief.
And John Lackey is livid.
The Brewers’ first baseman homered in each of his first two plate appearances against Reds starter Amir Garrett on Monday evening, helping his team to a 6-1 lead after two frames. The first was a solo blast in the first inning, and the second was a two-run shot to the opposite field in the second inning.
According to MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, Thames has tied the Brewers’ record for home runs in April with 10. Carlos Lee also hit 10 homers in April 2006.
Seven of Thames’ 10 home runs have come against the Reds. Including his first two at-bats on Monday night, Thames is hitting .379/.474/.924 with 17 RBI along with the 10 dingers. Not too shabby from a guy the Brewers signed to a three-year, $16 million contract during the offseason.
Lackey and Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio both recently implied Thames is using performance-enhancing drugs, but Thames was tested immediately after last Monday’s game against the Cubs.