Waiting patiently for baseball to start, I look back at some of the high points of last summer's Texas League season. Watched a lot of great baseball and looking forward to driving up to Little Rock again to catch a Travelers game. Unfortunately (for me, not them) it's unlikely that Mike Trout or Garrett Richards will be at AA level again this year, but that's OK. I'm looking forward to the next batch of young players coming up through the AA system.
Shelby Miller threw for the Springfield Cardinals, St. Louis' AA affiliate, late last summer. He is probably close to being major league ready, and if a spot opens up in the Cardinal rotation, he'll likely be given a chance to take it. I plan to keep my eye out for him. I thought he had great poise pitching out jams when we watched him pitch. The MiLB sites aren't quite as up to the minute in off-season as MLB sites are, and I can't tell what roster he's on. If he's still on the Springfield team, hopefully I can get another look at him this upcoming summer. I may have better luck catching him pitch against the Astros in Minute Maid!
Ethan Hollingsworth was playing for Midland last summer, well at least the early half. I watched him throw against the Hooks in May and he looked great for the first few innings and then the world just kind of caved in on him. The Oakland A's moved him up to the AAA club at some point, and I lost track of him. I did a little research and learned that he was traded by the A's to the Kansas City Royals for Kila Ka'aihue. I wouldn't be surprised to see him throwing for the Royals when rosters expand to 40 in September, maybe earlier if needed.
Garrett Richards, like Miller, could use another full season in the minors. Fortunately for the Angels, they have a very strong starting rotation, which means no need to rush Richards. When Richards came up to the big club in September last year, it was a good test for him to get a feel for the bigs.