The centerpiece to the Royals trading Zack Greinke to the Brewers; Odorizzi coincidentally has been compared to Greinke himself, albeit a lesser one. He was Milwakuee’s 2010 minor league pitcher of the year. Baseball America describes his mechanics as clean, effortless and easily repeated. With stellar command, he throws an 88 to 95 MPH sinking fastball and is able to maintains velocity deep into games. Although all his breaking pitches show good movement, none rank as a plus pitch and will need continued development. Often times, Odorizzi was able to ride his fastball without using many off-speed pitches. Scouts like his curveball best, slider is more of a cutter and changeup shows potential if he quits tipping the pitch with slower arm movement. Physically, he’s built for durability, mentally is poised and confident. Projects as a number two or three starter.
Career Stats (inc. 2011): 10.2 K/9 | 2.8 BB/9 | 260 2/3 IP | 3.38 ERA | 1.20 WHIP | .5 Hr/9 | 8.0 H/9
2011 Stats (A+): 12.1 K/9 | 2.7 BB/9 | 72 1/3 IP | 2.61 ERA | .205 FIP | 1.13 WHIP | .4 Hr/9 | 7.4 H/9 | .339 BABIP
Statistically speaking, there is everything to like about Odorizzi. His first full season of pitching in 2010 wasn’t bolstered by a low BABIP or LOB%. His current season is improving upon his last. Be warned, his home park is extremely pitcher friendly (Wilmington (Class High-A, Kansas City)) – a place where both Mike Moustakas and Eric Hosmer saw significant power reduction. His fastball will be able to fool younger hitters. The real test will be more advanced hitter at Double-A where he’ll need to continue developing his off-speed pitches to sustain further success. I think he’ll be another Jeremy Hellickson. ETA, 2012 when the Royal Invasion takes full effect.
Franklin started to catch people’s attention in 2010 when he unexpectedly launched 23 home runs at Single-A. His small frame gave pause to the gaudy power numbers, but his above-average bat speed with good whip-action, good leverage and strong hand-eye coordination made believers out of the scouts that the power was legit. With great power comes great risk. His swing hard and aggressive approach will, and does, lead to a fair amount of strikeouts in addition to leaving his swing getting long. Able to drive the ball to all fields. Average runner with good instincts. Defensively is a good athlete, has solid actions and average range – at best – playing shortstop; scouts believe his range and fringe-arm will lead to a permanent position switch to second base.
Career Stats (inc. 2011): .290/.359/.469 | 852 AB | 80 XBH | 30 Hr | .179 ISO | 40/12 SB/CS | 190:84 K:BB
2011 Stats (A+): .275/.356/.411 | 258 AB | 20 XBH | 5 Hr | .136 ISO | 13/1 SB/CS | 56:31 K:BB | .333 BABIP
In a relatively surprising move, the Mariners promoted Franklin to Double-A over this past weekend, responding to the internal moves of calling up Dustin Ackley to the majors. The move seems odd only as scouts and insiders were expecting him to absolutely rake at Class High-A in the California League, especially after his power outburst in 2010. Nevertheless, his .136 ISO and five (5) home runs at High-A were only slightly disappointment as his peripherals were still solid. Currently, in four brief games, he has 9 hits in 15 at-bats with 2 xbh (1 Hr) and two strikeouts as of 6/28/11. He’ll need to get real hot at Double-A to match his .281/.351/.485, 23 home runs (513 AB)and 25 steals in 35 attempts (123:50 K:BB) at Single-A in 2010. I fully expect a transition to second base if Ackley moves to the outfield. With that, I think Franklin’s ceiling could project to the following fantasy line of 70/20/80/.275/15 in his prime. Like a mini-Brandon Phillips; baseline: Danny Espinosa; floor: Kelly Johnson/Neil Walker. ETA: late 2012.