When you are coming off of a season in which you posted a 2.34 ERA it’s probably a great feeling, but one that you likely aren’t expecting to be able to repeat. That’s just a very high level of performance. But for Alex Powers, he laughs. Probably.

Despite the fact that he dominated in Double-A Pensacola last season with that 2.34 ERA in 42.1 innings where he had a 0.97 WHIP, 11 walks, and 55 strikeouts, the Reds sent the right-handed reliever back to Double-A to begin this season. As you would expect given his past performance, he destroyed the confidence of opposing hitters. He threw 22.0 innings with the Chattanooga Lookouts and allowed just three runs (1.23 ERA) with six walks and 33 strikeouts.

That performance earned him a long overdue promotion to Triple-A. Alex Powers has barely missed a beat for the Louisville Bats. Since moving up to the International League he’s posted a 1.85 ERA in 24.1 innings where he’s allowed just one home run in the league where every team is shattering home run records. He’s also struck out 29 batters to go with 11 walks. On the season that gives him a 1.55 ERA across his 46.1 innings.

More recognition for Aristides Aquino

It wasn’t even 24 hours ago that Aristides Aquino was named the International League Rookie of the Year and named to the league’s postseason All-Star team. Now he’s being recognized by C. Trent Rosecrans at Baseball America as the Cincinnati Reds Minor League Player of the Year.

While Aristides Aquino barely played half of a season this year with Louisville, he hit .299/.356/.636 in 78 games for the Bats. That came with 13 doubles, a triple, and an organizational best (on the farm) 28 home runs.

Billings just keeps winning, just keeps winning

The Billings Mustangs began their season much like their parent club did: 1-8. And much like the parent club that start buried their chances for the playoffs. Sort of. In the Pioneer League they play a first half and a second half. You can qualify for the playoffs in each. With a 1-8 start, and a 38 game half, the Mustangs had little shot at the playoffs and sure enough, they missed out. Billings went 14-15 the rest of the way, finishing out 15-23.

Things have been very different in the second half. The Mustangs have won 13 of their last 15 games. Last night they beat Missoula 3-1, improving to 21-7 in the second half. That’s easily the best record in the league in the second half. They are 6.0 games up on the Osprey (Missoula) with 10 games remaining. Six of those games are against Missoula, though. That means they can take care of business directly, but it also means the same thing for the Osprey.

14 Responses

  1. Wes

    Great to see all these options emerge to potentially impact big league club next year out of pen. Reds need to find in house options to improve pen vs overpaying for proven products so they can use those funds else where like starting pitching and an impact bat. Reds should not anoint Iglesias as 2020 closer. Let there be open comp for every bullpen role.

    Aquino #1 prospect in reds organization

    • Oldtimer

      Aquino is a Red (no longer a prospect). More likely that India, Greene, or Lodolo is the current #1 Reds prospect.

      Like George Foster in 1975 (after several years of struggle) Aquino seems to have “gotten it” all of a sudden. It’s his ninth year in Reds organization.

      • Doug Gray

        I mean, technically, Aquino still qualifies as a prospect even though he is in the big leagues. He needs to pass up 130 at-bats before he’s no longer a “prospect”.

        But yeah, he’s not the #1 prospect in the organization either way.

      • Oldtimer

        89 AB so far in his career. I think he’ll be 130+ AB by EOY barring injury.

  2. JNort

    I know that the Reds have had very good numbers out of the pen this year, but there have been recent struggles and it is time to give Powers a chance with the big club. The numbers that you quoted are eye popping over two years !!! He is not afraid to pitch inside, and handles lefties well. I am surprised that another MLB club has not tried to acquire him, as he is not on Reds 40 man roster yet. Hope to see him with the Reds in September!

  3. Oldtimer

    Powers is 27 yo. White Sox drafted him in 2013. Played in Independent league in 2015. He has blossomed in 2018 and 2019. But 27 yo is old for MLB rookie.

    • JNort

      Not for a reliever, he has progressed year by year with the Reds .

    • MK

      Oldtimer you are talking out of both sides of your mouth. You previously extolled the fact that Aquino just got it after nine years in the organization similar to career of George Foster but after seven years Power is too long in minors to finally get it.

      • Oldtimer

        Big difference between the two. First, Foster was a Red for 4 years before he blossomed in 1975. #2 huge differences between young OF like Aquino and older RP like Powers. RARELY do 27 yo rookie P make it to MLB.

  4. John C.

    27 really isn’t that bad. You keep him through his prime 6 years and probably wouldn’t keep him at 33+ and potentially expensive anyway.

  5. BigBill

    Doug,
    What are your thoughts on Alex Powers? Does he have the stuff to be a valuable part of the Major League bullpen?

  6. AirborneJayJay

    Would you bring up Powers in September for a looksy since he is 27?? I know that will require a 40-man roster spot, so would you drop someone off of the 40-man to get a look at Powers? He has a nice last name for a bullpen pitcher.

    • JNort

      The fact that his numbers have been consistently excellent, and that he has given up just 1 Home Run in a league where they are setting HR records shows that he would be a great fit for a hitter’s Park. I am tired of seeing the same guys shuttled back and forth- give this guy a shot, He is probably free agent eligible-get him some mlb time.