Cubs Minor League Daily: The Surging Bats of Torres, Hannemann, and Amaya

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Cubs Minor League Daily: The Surging Bats of Torres, Hannemann, and Amaya

Chicago Cubs

gleyber torres cubsMy stance on Gleyber Torres has been one of optimistic caution. The tools were there, no doubt about that. And last year his walk rate of 8.4% hinted that he was going emerge as a patient, disciplined hitter eventually, even if his 21.0% strikeout rate indicated there was a little too much swing and miss to his game for a guy who had an ISO of .093. Even though he was one of the best players in the Midwest League at the age of eighteen, I needed to see either the strikeout rate come down or the ISO go up before I could get really excited.

I am now getting really excited.

He entered 2016 with a total of five professional home runs. He now has seven in just 59 games. His line of .251/.337/.426 translates to an ISO of .175, almost twice what he showed a year ago. His walk rate is up (10.9%), and his strikeout rate is almost unchanged (22.2%). That strikeout rate is just fine for a guy showing this kind of power (in the pitcher friendly Carolina League no less), and a guy showing that kind of power who has the potential to stay at shortstop is very noteworthy.

Right now I have him ranked number two in the Cubs’ organization, behind Willson Contreras who is playing pretty well himself this season, but if Torres keeps up this sort of a pace through July, I may have a very difficult time picking between those two for the top spot in the mid-season re-rankings.

Triple A: Iowa Cubs

Iowa was rained out. That means we get a doubleheader today in Colorado Springs.

Double A: Tennessee Smokies
Chattanooga 4, Tennessee 2
Hannemann is having a nice season.

High A: Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Frederick 7, Myrtle Beach 3
Leal did not have his best game, but half the runs he allowed were unearned.

Low A: South Bend Cubs
South Bend 6, Dayton 1
The Cubs are still clinging to first place.

Other Notes

  • The slash line for Jacob Hannemann looks low (.247/.310/.377), but his peripheral numbers are rock solid. Entering yesterday he was walking at an 8.5% rate, striking out just 15.4% of the time (a career low), and was piling up plenty of steals and homers. Oddly for a guy with his combination of power and speed, his BABIP was just .264. His history suggests that number should be right around .300, possibly a little higher.  That implies he could be in for a bit of a hot streak soon. He’s up to 173 games in Double A now, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see him called to Iowa in the not too distant future.
  • Gioskar Amaya has suddenly become just about the hottest hitter in the organization. In his past three games he has five hits, and four of them are home runs. The fifth is a double. He’s walked three times in that span, struck out just once, and raised his line from .239/.333/.339 to .265/.365/.470 in the process.
  • And here is Amaya’s homer.

Author: Luke Blaize

Luke Blaize is the Minor League Editor at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @ltblaize.