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Take a look at the Frederick box score so far...


Frobby

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Is this his last start of the year? If so he really finished strong for his last two starts. He's put together 13 innings 4 hits and 15 K's. These performances probably put him in the BA top 100 prospect list this winter.

Hard to say with a 4.something ERA though. He has shown dominance and ineptitude multiple times during the season. No doubt that he has the talent. Can he repeat it?

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Erbe was brilliant many times this year. When he was bad, he was very bad. Still, he easily earned a promotion to Bowie for next year. Assuming he won't pitch again, his final line is:

28 G, 150.2 IP, 120 H, 82 R, 72 ER, 21 HR, 50 BB, 151 K's, 4.30 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.02 K/9, 3.02 K/BB, 5.38 IP/start

That's a tremendous line for a 20-year old. Here's a couple of Frederick comps:

David Hernandez, age 22: 28 G (27 starts), 145.1 IP, 139 H, 86 R, 80 ER, 16 HR, 47 BB, 168 K's, 4.95 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 10.40 K/9, 3.57 K/BB, 5.34 IP/start

Adam Loewen, age 21: 28 G (27 starts), 142 IP, 130 H, 77 R, 65 ER, 8 HR, 86 BB, 146 K's, 4.12 ERA, 1.52 WHIP, 9.25 K/9, 1.70 K/BB, 5.22 IP/start

Next year he needs to work on consistency and keeping the ball down in the zone to get his HR rate down. But he made huge strides this year.

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28 G, 150.2 IP, 120 H, 82 R, 72 ER, 21 HR, 50 BB, 151 K's, 4.30 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.02 K/9, 3.02 K/BB, 5.38 IP/start
Thats the big thing that really sticks out. Thats 1.25 HR/9, which is very high. His K and BB numbers are very encouraging, and even his IP/start isn't bad. You don't get the same command/durability red flags that you see with someone like Tillman or Hernandez.

If his stuff is obviously nasty enough that his K/9 can be so high and his BB/9, H/9 and WHIP are so low, its sort of surprising that his HR/9 is so high. I haven't seen him pitch, but my speculation would be that he struggles a bit with either fastball command, often leaving balls in the middle of the plate that are crushed, or hanging his breaking stuff. When he makes good pitches, nobody can touch them, but he often times leaves a pitch over the middle or hangs one, and thats when he gets hurt. For the people who get to watch him consistently, does that sound about right?

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Thats the big thing that really sticks out. Thats 1.25 HR/9, which is very high. His K and BB numbers are very encouraging, and even his IP/start isn't bad. You don't get the same command/durability red flags that you see with someone like Tillman or Hernandez.

If his stuff is obviously nasty enough that his K/9 can be so high and his BB/9, H/9 and WHIP are so low, its sort of surprising that his HR/9 is so high. I haven't seen him pitch, but my speculation would be that he struggles a bit with either fastball command, often leaving balls in the middle of the plate that are crushed, or hanging his breaking stuff. When he makes good pitches, nobody can touch them, but he often times leaves a pitch over the middle or hangs one, and thats when he gets hurt. For the people who get to watch him consistently, does that sound about right?

Erbe's main problem is consistency from game to game. I'm not sure I have this exactly right, but by my count he had eight starts in which he allowed 17-18 of his 21 home runs, and also allowed 47 ER in 37.1 IP. In the other 20 starts, he's allowed 25 ER and 3-4 HR in 113 IP (1.99 ERA). Six of the eight bad games occurred in two three-start stretches.

By the way, Loewen and Hernandez's seasons at Frederick were very similar in that regard - they each had several games where they absolutely blew up, but pitched well far more often then not. Hernandez did a nice job of ironing out his inconistencies this year - let's hope Erbe can do the same in 2009.

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It's also been nice to see him pitch deeper into games. The past two seasons he seemed to really tire down the stretch and it showed in his results. This years it appears that has not been a problem as he's been able to put some quality starts down the stretch where in previous years he was too gassed to do this. As has already been said if he can just improve on his game to game consistency "watch out". One other thing to consider when comparing him to both Hernandez and Loewen is that Erbe is only 20 years old. What he's done at this level and at his age is pretty impressive.

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It's also been nice to see him pitch deeper into games. The past two seasons he seemed to really tire down the stretch and it showed in his results. This years it appears that has not been a problem as he's been able to put some quality starts down the stretch where in previous years he was too gassed to do this. As has already been said if he can just improve on his game to game consistency "watch out". One other thing to consider when comparing him to both Hernandez and Loewen is that Erbe is only 20 years old. What he's done at this level and at his age is pretty impressive.

Good point. He's also really improved his K:BB rate. The fact he sometimes struggled in the past to go deeper also added fuel to some that thought he was destined to be a relief pitcher. I think his ability to go deep and often dominate in those games brings optimism to the fact he can still progress into a major league starter. Hopefully he can build upon and improve on this season at Bowie next year.

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Good point. He's also really improved his K:BB rate. The fact he sometimes struggled in the past to go deeper also added fuel to some that thought he was destined to be a relief pitcher. I think his ability to go deep and often dominate in those games brings optimism to the fact he can still progress into a major league starter. Hopefully he can build upon and improve on this season at Bowie next year.

One of the reason Brandon doesn't always go deep into games, is that he hits his pitch counts. He often goes deep into counts and gets alot of balls fouled off, driving up his pitch count. With only being 20 years old, he is also still learning to pitch and building up his arm strength. So give him time to continue his development and he will just fine. If he continues to progress, he has the stuff to be at the top of the rotation.

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Thats the big thing that really sticks out. Thats 1.25 HR/9, which is very high.

This is what really sticks out to me (from minorleaguesplits.com):

         IP   AVG BABIP WHIP  W/9  K/9  HR/9   GB%   LD%   FB%  IF/F  HR/F None On 89.7 .175  .229 1.00 3.21 10.14 0.70  38.7% 13.0% 48.3% 17.7%  6.3% Men On  56.3 .294  .309 1.37 2.72  6.55 2.24  40.7% 10.5% 44.2% 18.1% 18.4% 

Hernandez was also terrible with men on base last year, and this year he's been great. Hopefully Mike Griffin can do the same thing for Erbe...

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This is what really sticks out to me (from minorleaguesplits.com):
         IP   AVG BABIP WHIP  W/9  K/9  HR/9   GB%   LD%   FB%  IF/F  HR/F None On 89.7 .175  .229 1.00 3.21 10.14 0.70  38.7% 13.0% 48.3% 17.7%  6.3% Men On  56.3 .294  .309 1.37 2.72  6.55 2.24  40.7% 10.5% 44.2% 18.1% 18.4% 

Hernandez was also terrible with men on base last year, and this year he's been great. Hopefully Mike Griffin can do the same thing for Erbe...

Yep, yet another good parallel with Hernandez's 2007 season. The main difference is that Erbe is 17 months younger than Hernandez was when he was at Frederick last year.

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Doesn't Rowell have a similar split as a hitter?

Billy Rowell:

Bases empty: .183/.244/.293 (.538 OPS)

Runners on: .331/.395/.468 (.863)

It's also worth noting that Rowell has shown a significant inprovement in July/August.

His BA is now up to .246 and he posted a .745 OPS in July and a .748 OPS in August.

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