Minor League Minutes: 8/19/2021

Be sure to check out the most recent edition of the podcast. Joel and I sat down with LHP Anthony Veneziano to talk about his delivery, the progress he’s made since being drafted in 2019, and his time at Coastal Carolina.

Be sure to check out John’s interview with 2021 4th round pick Shane Panzini.

“It’s effortless velocity,” Hausmann said. “He’s nice and smooth with a hard and heavy fastball. He really drives hard with his legs and lets his arm go for the ride. We actually had a conversation during the year that guys were getting too good of swings on 93-96 because he’s always over the plate. But that was a good problem to have because it’s hard to teach guys how to throw strikes.”

Wednesday’s Highlight Reel

Singer continues run of great starts for KC

Brady Singer hasn’t exactly had a banner year so to this point. His ERA currently sits at 5.23 after shutting down the best lineup in baseball last night and Singer has dealt with shoulder fatigue and command issues at various times this year. The good news for Singer is that his FIP is in great shape at 3.75, ranking 46th out of 108 pitchers in MLB with at least 90 IP this season. Singer’s command looked like it had made a triumphant return last night, as he held the Astros to just 2 runs in 6.2 IP with 6 K and 2 BB. Both runs scored in the top of the 7th inning with 2 outs, and you could make the argument that Matheny left Singer in one batter too long (though in a rebuilding year letting him face Castro was 1000% the correct move).

Singer’s start continues what has been a very promising trend for this Royals rotation. Daniel Lynch has been absolutely fantastic since returning from Omaha. Carlos Hernandez has shown an improved ability to throw strikes and hasn’t lost any velocity in doing so. Brad Keller has a 3.61 ERA and 3.69 FIP while averaging over 6 IP per start since July 4th. It’s been a rough go for this pitching staff in 2021 but we’ve seen real, marked improvement over the last month and a half or so. Singer’s brilliant outing last night was just the latest in a long run of improvement.

MJ Melendez tied for MiLB lead in HR

Well if there is anyone in this organization that is having a banner year, it’s MJ Melendez. Good gravy this kid is impressive. Melendez’ opposite field BOMB last night tied him once again for the lead in HR in all of MiLB with Griffin Conine. For the season, Melendez is now slashing .285/.367/.626/.993 with a 0.54 BB/K, 155 wRC+, 31 HR and 18 doubles in 376 PA. He’s having something of a career year behind the plate as well, as he’s allowed just 5 passed balls all season, on pace for a career best. He’s also throwing out runners at a great pace and has picked a couple more off. Prospects Live recently joined the MJ Melendez hype train with us, ranking him 2nd in their Royals top 30 list. I know folks are enamored with Nick Pratto, but Melendez’ defensive value is going to make it so much easier for him to be a valuable member of a winning big league club. Pratto is going to have to hit a ton while Melendez merely needs to be league average or so to create surplus value. In any case, watching the improvements that both Melendez and Pratto have made this season continues to be a joy to watch.

Photo Credits: Ian Maule, Tulsa World

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