Sure, it was at a very hitter-friendly park in a very hitter-friendly league, but Koby Clemens hit the cover off the ball last season:
Say what you want about the Astros’ eighth-round pick of the 2005
Draft, that he’s a product of a hitting league and a very friendly
ballpark, but it’s difficult to look past the fact that he finished the
season with the most RBIs in all of the Minor Leagues, won the
California League batting title with a .345 average and led the Class A
Advanced circuit in RBIs (121), doubles (45), slugging percentage
(.636) and OPS (1.055).
Clemens was an 8th round pick by in 2005, he tends to have to repeat levels before he does anything solid and he isn’t even the Astros’ top-rated catching prospect (that would be Jason Castro). Still, he has power and some patience at the plate and may just manage to make it to the bigs someday if the stars align just so.
Not bad for someone who seemed like a nepotism pick at the time.
The Padres are set to recall top infield prospect Luis Urías from Triple-A El Paso, according to a report from Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune. It’ll be the second such stint for the club’s no. 2 prospect, and one they hope to extend through the end of the season. A corresponding roster move will be announced later this weekend.
Urías, 22, struggled in his first promotion to the majors this April. Touted as “one of the Minors’ better pure hitters” with “innate bat-to-ball skills” and “plus on-base skills,” he found it difficult to adjust to big league pitching and slashed a lackluster .083/.241/.125 with just two hits and four walks over 11 games with the Padres.
Upon his return to Triple-A, however, the young middle infielder has delivered nothing short of spectacular results, batting .315/.398/.600 with 19 home runs, seven stolen bases (in nine chances), and a .998 OPS across 339 plate appearances. Given the additional measures he’s taken to improve his mechanics — something, Acee says, the Padres are far more interested in than his results at the plate — it seems he may be ready to handle the competition at the highest level on a long-term basis.
Urías is expected to be recalled in time for the Padres’ game against the Cubs on Saturday, where he’ll likely share the middle infield with fellow top prospect Fernando Tatís. The game is set for 2:20 PM EDT.