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Weekly Braves Winter League Recap: Lets get started

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The first of our weekly winter league recaps covering the Braves prospects in 6 different leagues

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves have a bunch of players involved in fall and winter league baseball this year. Amongst those are Hector Olivera, Lucas Sims, and Connor Lien. Every Monday we will recap the previous week's winter league action with all Braves prospects. This will be a one stop shop for the Arizona Fall League, Dominican Winter League, Venezuelan Winter League, Mexican Pacific League, Puerto Rican Winter League, and the Australian Baseball League.

Arizona Fall League


RHP Lucas Sims - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
2 G, 0-0, 5.40 ERA, 5 IP, 7H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Season-to-date Recap:
Lucas Sims has made a couple of starts for the Javelinas so far this season. He was roughed up a bit in his first start with 2 runs on 3 hits in 2 innings pitched. His second start yielded better result with only 1 run allowed in 3 innings, but he also only struck out 1 batter. Obviously an small sample, it is encouraging to hear positive reports on his stuff so far in the league. He had a very good end to his 2015 season and hopefully he will extend that into the Arizona Fall League.


RHP Mauricio Cabrera - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
3 G, 0-0, 12.27 ERA, 3.2 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Season-to-date Recap:
Cabrera has had a rough start to his Fall League stint. He gave up 3 runs and 2 runs in his first and second appearances. Nothing about his peripherals really jumped out, and his third start was a scoreless inning with 2 strikeouts. After his second start Keith Law had something to say of Cabrera, stating that he feels that due to the weakness of Cabrera's secondary stuff that he should switch to nothing but fastballs until the batters prove they can hit it. Cabrera's fastball is certainly electric-topping out at 102 mph with movement. That would certainly be enough to get outs from some major league hitters, especially if he learns to control it, but to be a truly elite late inning reliever he will likely need to flash an off speed pitch that is at least usable.


RHP Andrew Thurman - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
2 G, 0-1, 30.86 ERA, 2.1 IP, 7 H, 9 R, 8 ER, 4 BB, 2 K

Season-to-date Recap:
Andrew Thurman's early performance has been very disappointing for Peoria. He was rough over two innings in his first start and gave up 3 runs (2 earned) in 2 innings pitched. Then the wheels fell off for Thurman in his second start. He was only able to record one out and gave up 6 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks. Control was a concern for Thurman when he was drafted by the Astros out of UC-Irvine, and while he had done a good job early in his career at limiting walks he struggled at the end of the year with Mississippi. That has carried over to the early part of this fall, and he will need to improve to survive in the hitter-friendly league


RHP Daniel Winkler - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
2 G, 0-0, 4.50 ERA, 2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K

Season-to-date Recap:
The Braves Rule V selection has had a solid, albeit unspectacular start to his season. He has shown no ill effects from his Tommy John Surgery, and will hope to be a solid addition to the Braves bullpen next year. He has continued his tendency to strike out a high number of batters in his small sample. He has worked in relief for the Javelinas as he likely will with the Braves and outside of a home run has been good. His first game was a scoreless inning with 2 strikeouts. He allowed that home run in the second game, but still struck out 2 batters with no walks.


C Joseph Odom - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
2 G, .125/.125/.125, 2-8, 0 BB, 0 RBI, 2 K, 0 SB, 1 R, 0 HR

Season-to-date Recap:
Joseph Odom has had few opportunities to play, but has not made good use of the time he has gotten. He has struggles at the plate and in the field, going 1-8 and allowing 2 passed balls in 2 games. He got off to a nice start with a hit in his first at bat, but has struggled to do anything since. He will likely only play sparingly and hopefully he will make better use of his playing time going forward.


SS Johan Camargo - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
5 G, .211/.250/.211, 4-19, 1 BB, 3 RBI, 2 K, 0 SB, 0 R, 0 HR

Season-to-date Recap:
Camargo started off 3-8 with the Javelinas, and looked to be starting an impressive stint in the fall league. He wasn't able to continue that with 1 hit in his next 11 at bats, and as usual he has shown no power in games. He lacks a truly outstanding tool, though his arm is very good, and could be easily exploited by better pitchers in the AFL. That said, Peoria has tried to get him in the lineup, even giving him his first game action at third base since 1 game in 2013. He has been solid on defense so far and will hopefully improve with the bat.


OF Connor Lien - Peoria Javelinas

Season To Date
6 G, .182/.250/.182, 4-22, 1 BB, 0 RBI, 9 K, 0 SB, 2 R, 0 HR

Season-to-date Recap:
Connor Lien is one of the more intriguing Braves prospects playing in winter leagues and we should get a good dose of him as he has been starting in center field and leading off for the Javelinas. Unfortunately he has been pretty bad so far, and has really showcased the problems his high strikeout rates can cause. He hasn't shown improvement on a mediocre walk rate during his career, and has really struggled to make hard contact. His defense as usual has been good, though he does have an error to his name in center field. He should get plenty of chances to prove himself this fall and hopes to be a player in spring training in a couple of years.

Venezuelan Winter League


LHP Yean Carlos Gil - Tiburones de la Guaira
No game action

C Jose Briceno - Navegantes del Magallanes
No game action

C Jose Yepez - Cardenales de Lara
No game action

SS Emerson Landoni - Caribes de Anzoategui

Season To Date
13 G, .325/.372/.375, 13-40, 3 BB, 4 RBI, 4 K, 0 SB, 1 R, 0 HR, 2 2B

Season Recap:
Emerson Landoni ended his season with Mississippi on a particularly impressive hot streak and has continued that over to his first games in Venezuela. He is on a 6 game hit streak during which he is hitting .428 with 2 doubles. He has also done a good job of drawing walks in the early going. He is making consistent contact against both left handers and right handers. His game on October 21 was his best to date, as he had 2 hits in 4 at bats, including a double. He had 2 RBIs in that game and has really helped drive his team's offense all season.

Dominican Winter League

OF/IF Erison Mendez - Tigres de Licey
No game action

SS Luis Valenzuela - Aguilas Cibaenas
No game action

Mexican Pacific League

OF/1B Joey Meneses-Tomateros de Culiacan

Season To Date
13 G, .269/.309/.308, 14-52, 2 BB, 7 RBI, 8 K, 1 SB, 8 R, 0 HR, 2 2B

Season Recap:
Joey Meneses has been a solid presence for his hometown team so far with 7 RBIs and 8 runs scored. He hits in the middle of that Tomateros lineup that has struggled so far going 3-10. Always a great defender, it has been nice to see him add a little bit of offense to the mix so far. He is on a current 8 game hitting streak and has 4 of his RBIs and 5 of his runs scored in that time. His game on the 18th was his best so far, as he had 3 hits, scored 2 runs, and even stole a base.

C Alejandro Flores-Naranjeros de Hermosillo

Season To Date
3 G, .182/.182/.182, 2-11, 0 BB, 0 RBI, 1 K, 0 SB, 0 R, 0 HR

Season Recap:
Flores was primarily a bench player for Danville this year, and has taken on that same role with the Naranjeros. He managed a hit in each of his first 2 games, but has no extra base hits or walks so far.

P Ryne Harper-Caneros de los Mochis

Season To Date
1 G, 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K

Season Recap:
Harper has only appeared in 1 game and in true Ryne Harper fashion struck out 1 batter in a scoreless inning. He has been stuck at AA for 3 years now, but will hopefully get an opportunity to advance next year as he has performed well in his career.

Puerto Rican Winter League - Season has yet to start

C Jonathan Morales - Criollos de Caguas

3B Hector Olivera - Criollos de Caguas

Australian Baseball League

OF Keith Curcio - Melbourne Aces

Season To Date
4 G, .313/.353/.313, 5-16, 1 BB, 0 RBI, 0 K, 3 SB, 3 R, 0 HR

Season Recap:
Curcio's early season performance has been very good for the 2-2 Melbourne Aces. He leads the league in stolen bases so far and has been great as usual on defense. He has been leading off and playing center field, which was basically his role all season in the Braves system. He went 3-5 with 2 runs and a stolen base in his last game after a bit of a sluggish start in his first 4 games. He has yet to hit an extra base hit, though this is not really out of the norm for him. He's not a high ceiling prospect but has a chance to be a major league 4th or 5th outfielder due to his great defensive skills and speed.


C/1B Matt Kennelly - Perth Heat

Season To Date
4 G, .250/.333/.667, 3-12, 2 BB, 2 RBI, 3 K, 0 SB, 3 R, 1 HR, 2 2B

Season Recap:
Kennelly and his family's team are tied for first place in the league at 3-1. Kennelly's family is well known in Australia for their baseball skills, and Matt is one of 4 Kennellys on the Perth Heat. Kennelly is the only Braves prospect with a home run this fall, a walk off shot to give Perth the win over Adelaide. All of his hits have been extra base hits so far, a bit of a stray from his normal performance. He has been starting at catcher for Perth and will likely get a lot of playing time this fall


This week's MVP: Emerson Landoni

This is a little more than a week, but Landoni has been fantastic in the early going for the Caribes de Anzoategui. His .325 average leads the system's winter league players and he currently is riding a 6 game hitting streak. While his team has underwhelmed Landoni has continued the performance he almost led Mississippi to a playoff appearance with.