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Minor League Update: 8/18

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While the big club is struggling against those pesky Blue Jays, maybe we should take a look down at the farm and see what the future might hold. The future being September or even 2011.

LARS ANDERSON, 1B (AA)
.356/..459/.622, 5 hr, 23 rbi (.388 v. righties, .368 RISP, .393 in Aug.)

Mr. Anderson has found his stroke in Maine. That is official. As you can see in the line above, he isn't struggling at all. He's killing righties, he's hitting when it matters and August is his his whipping boy. He holds a 1.081 OPS, which, if he had enough at-bats to qualify, would be No. 1 in the Eastern League.

If we see some injuries, we might see Lars come September, but I hope not. I want to unleash the beast like everyone else, but I don't want to rush him either.

MICHAEL BOWDEN, SP (AAA)
3.21 era, 33.2 ip, 34 h, 5 bb, 23 so, .266 baa

Bowden is starting to pitch like he should since his promotion to Pawtucket. The hits are a bit high, but the walks are very low. His strikeouts are a bit low, but those should rise as he gains comfort in triple-A. His record is 0-3, but we know that doesn't matter it all for pitchers. We could see Bowden come September.

KRIS JOHNSON, SP (AA)
3.38 era, 120 ip, 129 h, 51 bb, 95 so, .277

Johnson's numbers aren't that bad. A little too many hits and a few too strikeouts, but he's keeping the ball in the yard with just  two home runs allowed in 120 innings of work. Very impressive. He seems to keep the ball on the ground with a ground ball/fly ball average of 1.36. He has four pitches: 4-seamer, 2-seamer, curveball and change, so it's probably the 2-seamer that's getting the groundballs with.

JON STILL, C (A+)
.282/.386/.515, 20 hr, 78 rbi, 96 so

After lighting the world on fire in April (.310, 7 hr), he struggled in May and June. But in July it all seemed to come back (.337, 5 hr). In August he hasn't been as good, but his numbers overall are still strong. His offense is helped considerably by the ballpark (hitter's haven), but once he gets promoted we'll see if he falls flat or not.

JASON PLACE, CF (A+)
.240/.316/.415, 15 hr, 56 rbi, 138 so, 42 bb

Place is an intriguing prospect. He was a first-round pick in 2006 straight out of high school and hasn't found a lot of success. In Lancaster he has some pop (15 hr), but everything else isn't quite there. Not a very high walk total, his batting average is .240 and he has struck out 138 times in 446 at-bats. He is supposively a very, very good defensive outfielder that is best fit for center field.