Richie Shaffer didn’t just win Triple-A All-Star MVP last week, he also took home his first Indians minor league player of the week award with 56 percent of the vote.
This week, every level from Low-A to Triple-A was represented by at least one standout player as Tribe affiliates played very well.
Without further ado, here are the Tribe's top minor league performers from the past week:
Jonathan Teaney (A-, RHP) - 0.00 ERA, 15.4 K/9, 0.43 WHIP
A 20th round pick this year out of San Diego, Jonathan Teaney has been a sensation out of the Mahoning Valley bullpen in Low-A.
In 13.0 innings thus far this season, Teaney has given up just two runs and struck out a whopping 23 batters already. The 21-year old right-hander has a fastball that tops out in the low-90s but he’s locating it well.
This past week, Teaney made two appearances out of the bullpen and he gave up zero runs in 4.2 innings while striking out eight, walking one and giving up just one hit. He’s definitely making a case for a late season promotion to Lake County at this rate.
Juan Hillman (A, LHP) - 0.60 ERA, 4.2 K/9, 0.73 WHIP
Perhaps fans were too quick to give up on the 2015 second round prospect.
After a very, very rough start to his 2017 season, Hillman has really taken his game to the next level in the last month. Hillman has pitched seven innings or longer in four of his last five starts, which is amazing considering he hadn’t ever pitched seven innings before.
What’s even more interesting is the fact that Hillman has gotten stronger as the 2017 season wore on. A storyline of his 2016 season was that he started strong and faded down the stretch, but in 2017, he’s already thrown 97.2 innings compared to just 63.0 last season and he’s looking better each time out.
This past week, Hillman got things started with seven strong innings, giving up just one run on five hits while striking out three and walking one. He topped that effort last night by throwing a career-high eight innings, giving up zero runs on four hits while striking out four and walking none.
While he’s not striking out batters at a high rate, Hillman is definitely turning the corner and proving his prospect status with this recent run of success.
Sam Haggerty (A+, 2B) - .455/.500/.636
Sam Haggerty continued his breakout 2017 season with a very strong week, culminating in a monster game last night for High-A Lynchburg.
Haggerty is leading all players in every level of the minor or major leagues in triples this season with 12, and he picked up another one this past week.
Overall on the week, the former 24th round pick racked up 10 hits in 22 at bats, with two doubles and a triple while also stealing a base. He also had a very rare five-hit game last night in Lynchburg’s blowout victory over Potomac.
Mike Papi (AA, RF) - .500/.500/1.071
Mike Papi only played four games this past week, but he sure made the most of them, racking up seven hits in 14 at bats with four of those hits going for extra bases.
Of those four extra base hits, two were doubles and two were home runs.
After struggling to bat over .230 at any level since being drafted in the first round alongside Bradley Zimmer in 2014, Papi has had a breakout season this year, batting .280 in 37 games for Double-A Akron. He’s on pace to best his previous career high of 15 home runs set last season and his strikeout rate has dropped over five percent.
Yandy Diaz (AAA, 3B, OF) - .393/.452/.464
While he hasn’t been hitting for enormous power, Yandy Diaz has definitely been hitting. Diaz is just missing the cut to be qualified for the International League batting title, and he’d be leading it by a whopping 20 points as his season batting average rests at .338 following his game yesterday.
The 25-year old Cuban is currently riding an eight game hitting streak which includes all seven games he played this past week, where he racked up an org-best 11 base hits. Of those 11 hits, two were doubles and he also walked three times while striking out just four.
Hopefully he can prove to be better than a 4-A player because Diaz is clearly above and beyond the Triple-A level at this point.
Julian Merryweather (AAA, RHP) - 1.08 ERA, 13 K/9, 0.72 WHIP
At 25 years old, some might not consider Julian Merryweather a top prospect, but you have to consider he was drafted as a college senior in 2014 and has only been getting significant playing time as a starter for the last two seasons.
Merryweather has the top-graded fastball in the Indians system, hitting the upper 90s with relative ease, and he’s been improving his secondary offerings. He returned from injury two weeks ago and has been on a pitch count, but that didn’t stop him from dominating in both appearances he made this past week.
In two starts, Merryweather combined to throw 8.1 innings, giving up just one run on five hits while walking one and striking out 12. Merryweather has certainly carved a place for himself as a future option in the Indians rotation with his performance this year.
Who was your minor league player of the week in the Tribe system?
This poll is closed
Jonathan Teaney (A- - 2 G, 4.2 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K)
Juan Hillman (A - 2 GS, 15.0 IP, 9 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, HBP)
Sam Haggerty (A+ - 6 G, 10-22 for .455, 2 2B, 3B, 3 RBI, 2 BB, 4 K, SB)
Mike Papi (AA - 4 G, 7-14 for .500, 2 2B, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 2 K)
Yandy Diaz (AAA - 7 G, 11-28 for .393, 2 2B, 4 RBI, 5 R, 3 BB, 4 K)
Julian Merryweather (AAA - 2 GS, 8.1 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 12 K)
Richie Shaffer (56%) - Week of 7/7-7/13
Mitch Longo (77%) - Week of 6/30-7/6
Bobby Bradley (55%) - Week of 6/23-6/29
Shane Bieber (49%) - Week of 6/16-6/22
Aaron Civale (67%) - Week of 6/9-6/15
Francisco Mejia (60%) - Week of 6/2-6/8
Eric Stamets (63%) - Week of 5/26-6/1
Connor Marabell (34%) - Week of 5/19-5/25
Shawn Morimando (34%) - Week of 5/13-5/18
Triston McKenzie (75%) - Week of 5/5-5/12
Thomas Pannone (33%) - Week of 4/28-5/4
Tyler Naquin (28%) - Week of 4/21-4/27
Erik Kratz (31%) - Week of 4/14-4/20
Conner Capel (35%) - Week of 4/6-4/13
Triston McKenzie - 5
Francisco Mejia - 4
Shawn Morimando - 4
Thomas Pannone - 4
Richie Shaffer - 4