Sean Ratliff

I recently had the privilege to have Kevin Goldstein, of Baseball Prospectus, answer some of my questions regarding Mets minor leaguers.

MD: Darrell Ceciliani had monster a season for Brooklyn. Does he have enough defensive ability to be an impact type big league CF?? What would you say his ceiling is?

KG: I'm going to start with a quick comment that applies to nearly all of your questions. You're asking about short-season guys, and it's such a nascent time in these players careers that we're projecting a LOT. These players can go in a ton of directions from here, many of them good, many of them bad, and we can just go on what we know. Onto Ceciliani, I wouldn't call him an impact defender, but he can play the position well, and that gives him a huge leg up, as you can't say that about most minor league center fielders. What he did offensively this year was a very pleasant surprise, and did wonders for his stock. He does need to work on his approach, as he's a bit of a pitch chaser, and he needs to work on his base running, but he can hit and I like him quite a bit.
MD: Cory Vaughn displayed an above average power/speed combination in the NYPL.? Do you feel he can continue this at higher levels of competition?

Tags: Akeel Morris, Baseball Prospectus, Cory Vaughn, Darrell Ceciliani, Juan Urbina, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Lucas Duda, Reese Havens, Sean Ratliff
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So, 23-year old Sean Ratliff's had a pretty nice season, hitting his way out of St. Lucie and bopping .318/.371/.580 at AA. It's the shape of his production at AA we'll examine here.

Ratliff by Month at AA

When he first reached AA in June and July he never walked, and struck out a lot, but when he made contact, he hit the ball hard, often for extra bases.? Then, in August he started walking a lot (13%).? That's good.? However the tradeoff for seeing more pitches was that his strikeout rate rose as well.

If you want to be optimistic about Ratliff, you'll point to the average over .300 and the 16 homers.? If you want to be pessimistic, you'll point to the fact that he swings and misses a ton and when he does take more pitches and pushes his walk rates to acceptable rates, he strikes out more.? If you want to be optimistic you'll talk about how this was his first go-round at AA and we're dealing with relatively small splits here.

Tags: Analysis, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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AAA: Pawtucket Red Sox 7, @ Buffalo Bisons 3- CF Josh Reddick, who went deep twice off Dillon Gee on Monday, was 5-5 with a bomb on Tuesday.

- LF Lucas Duda was 2-4 with a pair of doubles.? Pick your own adjective to describe his .325/.395/.650 line in 62 AAA games.? Modest is not a good choice.? Monstrous would do.? Awesome, in the original, inspiring awe sense, works fine.? By the way, he's up to 38 doubles and 63 extra base hits this year in 107 games against just 75 strikeouts.? See you in bigs the either on September 1, or the day the Bisons are eliminated from the playoffs or playoff contention, whichever comes last.

- Michael Antonini (1-2, 4.50): 8 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 1 HR

Tags: Binghamton Mets, Buffalo Bisons, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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I don't write about day-to-day stuff in Savannah much, although I've been told I should more.? Anyway, tonight we're doing one of the coolest things I've ever been involved with in baseball: a dude on fire is going to run the bases after our game.? Since this is kinda a big deal to us which has brought some national attention, we can't afford a rainout.? So, with thunderstorms in the area, we had the tarp on the field last night and came in at 7 am to remove it this morning.? If you leave the tarp on, when it's dry, it'll burn the grass underneath.

AAA: Buffalo Bisons 9, @ Pawtucket Red Sox 4The story in Buffalo continues to be the bats.

DH Lucas Duda (.321/.392/.663) was 2-4 with a homer and a walk.? It was his 22nd homer of the year nad his 16th in 51 games at AAA.

Tags: Binghamton Mets, Buffalo Bisons, Lucas Duda, Savannah Sand Gnats, Sean Ratliff, St. Lucie Mets, Toby Hyde
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AAA: Buffalo Bisons 10, @ SWB Yankees 4

The Bisons won their seventh in a row behind 3-4 efforts with a home run from both corner infielders 1B Nick Evans (pictured) and 3B Mike Cervenak.? Evans is off to a .333/.396/.583 start with six doubles and two homers in 12 games with Buffalo.? Between AA and AAA, the 24-year-old has hit .299/.369/.534 with 36 doubles and 19 homers.

CF Kirk Nieuwenhuis was 2-5 with his first AAA triple.? He's hitting .345 (10-for-29) in his first seven AAA games.

Tags: Binghamton Mets, Buffalo Bisons, Chris Schwinden, Nick Evans, Sean Ratliff, St. Lucie Mets, Toby Hyde
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AAA: Rochester Red Wings 10, @ Buffalo Bisons 0

CF Jesus Feliciano (.362/.405/.448), who was 3-5 with a double from the top of the Bisons' lineup was pretty much the only Buffalo player with a good afternoon.

Notably, Ruben Tejada (.295/.344/.364) played second and turned a double play.? At the plate he was 1-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Tags: Binghamton Mets, Buffalo Bisons, Fernando Martinez, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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Last week, I took a mid-season review of my pre-season Top 41 Mets Prospects which you can read here (1-10, 11-19, 21-29, 30-41).

Today, I'll take a look at a few of my misses, guys who were in the system last winter, who have over-performed my expectations for them and generated some buzz this season.? We'll start with the hitters.? Pitchers should run tomorrow.

Feel free to use the comments section to tell me who I missed.? Remember, I'm not including 2010 draftees yet.

Tags: Eric Campbell, Juan Lagares, Lucas Duda, Sean Ratliff, Top Prospects Series, Wilfredo Tovar, Toby Hyde
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AAA: Buffalo Bisons 6, @ Syracuse Chiefs 2

Apparently Buffalo manager Ken Oberkfell isn't convinced that Lucas Duda can hit.? So, Duda, from the eighth spot in the Bisons' batting order went 2-4 with a solo homer, his seventh in his last ten games.

After hitting six bombs in 45 games in AAA, Duda has eight in 21 in AAA.? He's hitting a combined .300/.406/.582 for the year and .329/.395/.750 in 21 games in AAA.? Three of his eight homers have come against lefties against whom he's hitting .200/.286/.640 compared to .392/.448/.804 versus righties.

Tags: Binghamton Mets, Buffalo Bisons, Joshua Satin, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Lucas Duda, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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Watching the Marlins play defense felt like I was watching a minor league team.? It's telling that that cheapo Marlins and the awful Nationals, have committed the most errors in the NL.

AAA: @ Buffalo Bisons 9, Syracuse Chiefs 4Tobi Stoner (4-7, 5.28) picked up the win here, more for pitching five innings on a day when the offense was potent than for being really effective himself.? His line: 5 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 K.? Dylan Owen and his 6.17 ERA came on in relief to throw the final two innings.

LF Lucas Duda homered for the third straight game to run his season line between AA and AAA to .291/.379/.654 with 21 doubles and 10 HR.? For the year, the 24-year-old has drawn 35 walks and struck out just 35 times in 59 games.? Per minorleague splits, his cumulative line vs. RHP: .340/.440/.617 with 21 doubles and 8 HR;? Vs. LHP: .130/.255/.239.? Obviously, they don't have Wednesday's stats in yet, but any questions??? With that line, he just shouldn't play against lefties on the corners, but he really would be a tremendously valuable part of a straight platoon in LF with some right-handed batter.? Duda's 10 HR this year are one off his career high set two years ago in St. Lucie when he had 11.? Duda hit an underwhelming .281/.380/.428 for Binghamton last year.? I left him off my Top 41 this past off-season because of 1. his significant platoon split, 2. his inability to hit LHP and 3. he'd never gone yard more than 11 times, which from a 1B or LF just isn't enough.

Tags: Lucas Duda, Michael Antonini, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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Monday, the SAL named LHP Jimmy Johnson, RHP Jeff Kaplan, OF Sean Ratliff and 2B/1B Josh Satin to the Southern Division All-Star team.? The game will be played on June 23rd, at the home of the West Virginia Power.

Satin (.310/.409/.411) is tenth in the SAL in batting average and third in OBP.

Ratliff (.304/.346/.487) is tied for fourth in the league with 16 doubles.

Tags: Awards, Daily Recap, Jimmy Johnson, Joshua Satin, Sean Ratliff, Toby Hyde
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Friday, on their weekly Prospect Hotsheet, the good people at Baseball America ranked Fernando Martinez #6 and put Kirk Nieuwenhuis on their "Helium Watch."

So, on Friday, BA wrote of Martinez:

Why He's Here: .458/.480/.917 (11-for-24), 2 HR, 3 2B, 1 3B, 6 RBIs, 6 R, 1 BB, 2 SOThe Scoop: Martinez earned not-so hot honors last week for going 1-for-18, but even then we noted that he was just as likely to crack the Hot Sheet on the positive side of the ledger the next time around. Mission accomplished. While the Bisons remain mired in last place in the Northern Division at 5-20, they have won three of their last six games, which amounts to a hot streak for them. Martinez has been a big part of their renaissance, chipping in four multi-hit games on the week, while homering twice. He now leads the IL with 11 doubles and 16 extra-base hits, but most encouragingly, he's slashed his strikeout rate from one every 3.8 at-bats in April to one every 12 so far in May.
Since this was published, Martinez is 2-for-11 with three strikeouts giving him five Ks in 35 May AB, or 1 every seven May AB.? By the way, in 10 May game, Martinez is hitting .371/.405/.714.? Yes, friends, small sample sizes are very fun.

Tags: Baseball America, Fernando Martinez, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Sean Ratliff, Wilmer Flores, Toby Hyde
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