For all 2016 Prospect Ranking Scouting Reports – click here (these will come out one a day over the offseason).
Today we start looking at the prospects who aren’t on the 40-man roster, but got invited to big league camp that haven’t already been covered in this series. Things will start off with infielder Carlton Daal.
The Cincinnati Reds sent the 21-year-old infielder to their new affiliate in the Florida State League, the Daytona Tortugas. Daal began the season playing second base for the Tortugas after spending all of his career at shortstop previously.
The first week of April was a struggle for the infielder. He went 0-7 in his first two games before going 1-4 in the third game to get on the board. He would only get one more hit the rest of the week going 2-20 to start things out. The second week was a little bit better, but Daal still had some struggles as he went 5-19 (.263), but didn’t walk or have any extra-base hits. The final seven games of the month got out to a very rough start as he would go 1-12 in the first four games, but finished things by going 4-10 to salvage things and racked up his only extra-base hit of the month. In 19 games on the month he posted a .197/.231/.213 line with two walks and 14 strikeouts over 67 plate appearances. The lack of walks were an issue and the one extra-base hit, even in the power suppressing Florida State League led to struggles throughout the month.
For as tough as April was, May got out to a very strong start. In seven games of the first week he went hitless just once and had two hits in four different games, hitting .417 on the week. The hot streak didn’t carry over to the next week as he began by going 0-10 before picking up things by going 5-12 in the final three games against Palm Beach. That hot streak did carry forward into the third week, in limited action. He managed just 16 at-bats, but had five hits (.313) on the week with a walk. In the final eight games of May the Curacao native went 8-26 (.308) with two walks to finish up the month with a .318/.354/.318 line to go with five walks and 15 strikeouts in 97 plate appearances. The walk rate and strikeout rate both improved in May, helping out his overall line on the month. No extra-base hits was still an issue, but the rest of his game stepped up.
The first two days of June were solid as Daal went 3-7 with two steals, but he went into a bit of a tailspin after that. He finished out the week by going 0-8 and the slump continued into the following week as well, going 3-17 (.176). The third week was limited to just four games, but the infielder made them count by going 5-12 (.417) with a double and two walks. That carried forward into the final seven games of the month, including extending his hitting streak to eight by going 10-27 (.370) on the week. The month wound up being split into two halves, with a really poor first half, but a very strong second half to put up a .296/.329/.324 line with four walks and nine strikeouts in 78 plate appearances. He also added six steals in as many attempts.
July saw a transition back over to shortstop for Carlton Daal, after spending a large majority of the first half playing on the other side of the bag. The transition in the field went well, but he slumped in the first week at the plate, going 6-25 (.240) with a double and a walk. The first two games of the second week saw Daal go 4-8, but finished out 0-14 in the final four games of the week. The third week of July was a bit of a mixed bag at the plate that results in a .250 average with three walks and a double to go along with two steals. The last seven games were a struggle for the shortstop as he went 5-26 (.192). It was a step backwards from the previous two months as he posted a .218/.269/.248 line with seven walks and 16 strikeouts in 109 plate appearances. He also added another six steals to push his season total to 18.
The slump that ended July carried into August. In the first week Daal went 4-18 (.222), including three games without a hit. The second week of August was the exact opposite of the first as the infielder caught fire and racked up four multi-hit games, including three three-hit games, hitting .429 on the week in 28 at-bats with just two strikeouts. He would go 4-14 in the next four games (.286), but his season came to an end on August 20th when he was hit by a pitch.
Overall his season was a bit inconsistent. What wasn’t inconsistent was his lack of power output. The Florida State League suppresses power unlike any league in minor league baseball, but Carlton Daal managed just six doubles in 112 games. He showed a solid average, but the lack of power and low walk rate led to a .597 OPS on the season. He did show well on the base paths, providing 21 steals in 26 attempts.
Carlton Daal Scouting Report
Hitting | Daal can use the entire field, and he makes contact at a good rate, but he struggles to hit the ball hard often. His speed lets things play up a little bit and he could have a future average hit tool.
Power | There’s very little current power for Daal, but if he learns to pull the ball a little more often instead of using the opposite field as often, his power could perhaps jump up to a 30 instead of bottom of the barrel where it sits currently.
Running | He’s an above-average runner who can use his speed well on the bases.
Arm | He’s got an average arm that plays fine at shortstop. He made big strides in 2015 mechanically, eliminating a lot of errors from the previous season. There’s still some work to do, but big strides were made during the season.
Fielding | He shows average range at shortstop and above-average range at second base. He profiles a little stronger at second, but there’s a chance he could remain at shortstop if he can improve his throws a little bit over the next few years.
There are some things to like with Carlton Daal, but there are some clear areas where he needs improvement. His plate approach could be a bit more balanced, getting a little more pull happy to even things out. Getting a bit more consistent in the field would also boost his profile a little bit.