Jesus Montero has looked better than expected, defensively. However, this may not be saying much as the expectation going in was that he would drop the ball on every pitch/fielding opportunity and struggle to toss it back to the pitcher’s mound. In actuality, the times he’s been behind the plate I’ve forgotten he was there other than the fact that he is noticeable larger than your average backstop. Acknowledging that there is likely inherent bias, the reports that I’ve read/heard out of camp about his defense this spring seem to indicate the same thing: not a butcher, which is all that’s being asked of him. Offensively, he looks very imposing and has demonstrated a good command of the zone.
Christian Garcia has shown flashes. Despite annual trips to the DL lasting months (or seasons) at a time he seems to have found the time to develop a good change-up (ask Ryan Howard). The low to mid 80s change, nicely complements his 91-93 sinking fastball. The curveball hasn’t been as electric as advertised, but with a guy coming off 79 surgeries, I suppose you take what you can get. Hopefully, he’s able to stay healthy this year, but I wouldn’t count on it.
Despite going 5 for 12, Brandon Laird hasn’t stuck in my memory offensively. However, I will remember him for an awesome defensive play on Joey Gathright in the Blue Jays game. Laird stabbed a bouncing ball to his backhand side, then fired a laser over to first to get…THE SPEEDY GATHRIGHT. Didn’t know he had an arm like that.
McAllister and Nova both looked solid in brief appearances. Physically, they looked the part and both had good, not great, stuff. Nova kept the ball down and seemed to have good movement on his pitches. The velocity wasn’t blazing, but his motion was effortless, you can see why the organization’s scouts have always been high on him. McAllister had a decent slider and mixed things up with a 2 seamer and a 4, but I didn’t see a change-up.
-Romulo Sanchez is Fat K-Rod.
-Eduardo Nunez has a poor approach and wild swing, don’t see things working out for him in AAA.
-Colin Curtis has shown surprising pop
-Melancon’s curve has looked pretty good, but the fastball command still isn’t where it needs to be.
I haven't seen every inning of every game, so I'd love to get some discussion about other things people have noticed about some of the younger players