Alleghenies Short-A team (Kaui Monsters) review

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Updated: February 1, 2017

The Kauai Monsters had a great regular season this year going 57-33, but fell short in the playoffs to the eventual champions the Atsumi Acorns.  In the series vs the Acorns all the games were decided by 1 run in heart-breaking fashion.  The team will likely have many changes next year, but let’s review the players from last year.  First off will be the batters from most At-bats to the least on the team.

Max ‘Coffin’Ferris (C) – Ferris was the Monster’s starting catcher for 72 of their games this year and made the All-Star Team.  Ferris batted .244/.382/.388 for the year and threw out 32% of would be base stealers.  Max figures to be starting the year in Single-A.  (258 AB)

Yasushi Okada (RF) – Yasushi was signed in the off-season for just a $3000 bonus and it turned out to be a great addition for the Monsters.  Yasushi got 64 starts during the year 9 at 2b and 55 at RF.  Yasushi hit .272/.419/.346 for the year and showed a willingness to try and steal, but unfortunately wasn’t 50% at doing it.  Next season he will be promoted and the rumor is he might get some opportunities out of the pen.  (228 AB)

Miguel López (2b) – In his 3rd year with the Monsters, Miguel finally broke the Mendoza line with a .217/.247/.339 batting average.  He is known for his defense and ability to steal (but you can’t steal 1st).  The one other thing he has going is that he is only 21 years old.  The team will likely keep him 1 more year due to his age and defense, but if his average doesn’t come up, he shouldn’t expect 59 starts again.  (221 AB)

Suketsune Nakai (CF) –  Another guy with great defense, but did not hit.  His batting average was .214/.357/.291, which while the average might be low, that OBP is pretty high for a low average.  He is also 21 and this will be a make or break year for him.  (220 AB)

Subaru Yoshida (3b) – Subaru was on off season signing who split time at the corners in the IF with 16 starts at each.  A common theme we are seeing, Subaru didn’t hit well, but got on base a lot.  His average was .206/.466/.328.  It was enough to also garner an All-Star appearance.  His future will be in Single-A.  (204 AB)

António Valdéz (1b) – António was signed mid-season in 2023 and hit .248/.407/.295, while this year in 45 starts he hit .247/.357/.348.  At age 22, if he doesn’t show great improvement by the start of the year he may find himself unemployed.  (178 AB)

Rafael Durán (3b) – Rafael was signed right before the season and showed great promise being only 20 years old. In 49 starts he hit .271/.355/.376 and played excellent defense guarding the hot corner.  He is expected to get 1 more year with the Monsters before the team decides his future.  (170 AB)

Shinsui Nakamura (CF) – Shinsui split his time between A and SA ball.  In neither did he hit well batting .203/.295/.340 in SA and .205/.284/.323 in A ball.  While he played excellent defense, the team has acquired better CF prospects and Shinsui will probably not be back in 2025.  (153 AB)

Armando Ontiveros (1b) – Another player signed in the during the year after being released from Atsumi (just like Valdéz).  Armando didn’t play the field much, but as a DH he hit .264/.380/.336.  He is only 19 years old so depending on the new depth acquired by this team at 1b/DH, he most definitely will be back.  (140 AB)

Kel Wicks SS – For some reason the team thought signing an undrafted FA was worth 200k because that is what happened for Kel.  After signing that contract he proceeded to hit .180/.272/.230, but excelled on defense in 35 starts at SS.  Kel is only 21, so the team will be patient and see if In 2025 he can start hitting, but if he doesn’t which is most likely the case, it will have been a waste of 200K.  (139 AB)

Jiro  Fukuda (CF) – Jiro was signed in the off-season and started in SA, but moved up to  A.  In SA he hit .219/.417/.273.  He played excellent defensive OF and will most likely start in A ball again, but depending on how things shape out he might even be on AA team. (128 AB)

Chae-ung Kim (C)-  Chae-ung was the backup catcher and DH in his second season with the Monsters.  His batting improved in every category as he hit .262/.340/.429 this season in 38 games.  With the promotion of Ferris, Chae-ung is looking to be the starting catcher for the Monsters in 2025.  (84 AB)

Francisco Martinez (2b) – Francisco started the year with Monsters starting 23 games at SS and hitting .325/.442/.481.  With that he got promoted to A and never came back.  He looks to be repeating A next year, but at the age 22, if he gets off to a hot start he may get the promotion to AA. (77 AB)

Alfonso Martinez (RF) – Was signed for a 10K bonus and played in 25 games before being cut.  He hit .203/.243/.250 and was just a bad person to have on the team.  (64 AB)

Akio Kojima SS – Akio split time between SA and A and got hurt at the end of the year for the A team.  In SA he hit .175/.373/.238.  He is another bonus signing of 16K which is looking like a waste of money.  Akio might start the season off in SA, but the chances are just as good he will be a FA.  (63 AB)

César Ortiz (LF) – César has been in SA since 2020 and is still only 21.  This season he batted .254/.365/.460 in 34 games.  When it came to the post season the team let him start, but he didn’t come through.  Next year minus major improvements in the organization he should be in A ball. (63 AB)

Joey Toms (1b) –  When Joey was acquired in 2023, the team had hoped he would be ready for A by 2024.  Well that didn’t happen and 2024 was pretty much a lost year for the 19 year old.  He started 17 games at 1b and spend the rest of the years going through waivers. He hit .197/.275/.295 which was his worst year since he was 16.  The team is debating if they should cut bait, but with 1b options not so great he might survive one more year. (61 AB)

Noboru Furukawa (3b) – The 21 year old signed in July and proceeded to start 20 times at 3 different positions.  He hit .233/.377/.283, but the team was happy since the previous year he had 0 AB.  He is expected to be in SA 1 more year to get more AB’s.  (60 AB)

Tekkan Ishida (3b) –  Tekkan made it 29 games with the Monsters batting .237/.392/.271 before being released.  (59 AB)

Erwin Pauwels (CF) –  Erwin got a whole $10 bonus and he earned his keep as a good backup OF.  He got into 36 games and hit .236/.333/.327, while performing well at all 3 OF positions.  He will most likely be back in SA, but could get cut if the team gets an influx of young OF.  (55 AB)

Duane Matthews (RF) –  Duane was a 7th round pick this year and didn’t due bad at all when given the chance to swing the bat.  He only got into 35 games achieving 52 AB, but when he did bathe hit .327/441/.404.  Duane will definitely be back in SA next season and probably have a bigger role. (52 AB)

Clinton Stillingfleet LF – Clinton appeared in 19 games before being called up to A ball and not coming back.  In his short stint he hit .277/.340/.447.  His future is up in doubt, but he probably has 1 more year to impress or find a new team. (47 AB)

Christos Sutcliffe (SS) – Signed in July as a free agent, Christos hit .259/.300/.296.  He is only 20, but he doesn’t do much excellent.  Highly likely he won’t be back.

José Castro (3b)-  After tearing the league up last year José couldn’t hit a thing in his 9 games with the Monsters, batting a measly .200/.375/.200.  The team figured he was unhappy and sent him to A, where things didn’t get much better.  At age 23, time might be passing José by, and his time may be done here.  (25 AB)

Chris Jackson (1b) – Chris got in 7 games and hit .208/.259/.250 before the team cut him.  His defense was twice as poor as his hitting so there is no chance we ever see him here again.  (24)

Rubén Santos (RF) – Rubén signed in 2023 and didn’t get many AB, but looked deadly when he did.  2024 was not the same.  In fact he looked so lost up at the plate he only got into 17 games and 22 AB.    He hit .182/.182/.273, so with Rubén being the type of guy he is the team is banking on him correcting his mistakes.  (22 AB)

Katsunan Sasaki (SS)– Katsunan is a 17 year FA that was signed in the off season and got into 6 games.  In those games he did hit .294/.368/.353.  With that good showing Katsunan has most likely bought himself another year.  (17 AB)

Roberto Ortíz (RF) –  Roberto has been with the team since 2020 and this was the first year he got to the plate.  In 7 AB he hit .429/.429/.571 and did fairly well in the field also.  Roberto is only 20 years old and might get a chance to hang around 1 more year depending on how much he improves this off season. (7 AB)

Marcos Vargas  (RF) – 3 games 4 AB, 1 hit. Cut, signed by another team.  (4 AB)

Peter Myers (LF) –  Peter was an 8th round pick and got into 2 games and had 1 AB and getting a hit.  At age 22 Peter needs to show improvement this year or find himself a new career. (1 AB)

Robert Hawkins (CF) – 1 game no AB.  Released, signed by another team. (0 AB)

 

Here are the pitchers from most IP to least, with all the guys that have been cut will be bundled together.

Edgar Moreno – In his 2nd season with the Monsters, Edgar was pretty dominant.  In 80.1 IP, Edgar had an ERA of 1.79 and gave up only 47 hits.  If A ball rotation hadn’t been so stacked, he would have been called up.  He is definitely playing in A ball next season.   (80.1 IP)

Teruo Tanaka – Teruo was signed in January and hadn’t pitched since 2021, so the team decided he would spend the season in SA.  Well like Edgar, Teruo had a superb year, with a 1.91 ERA in 80 innings.  The only negative thing about Teruo’s numbers are that he did in in SA as a 22 year old.  Next year he will be in A ball and his leash might not be that long. (80 IP)

Tom Wilcox – Tom was the 30th pick in the 1st round in this year’s draft and signed for a bonus of just over 1 million dollars.  Tom bounced back and forth from the pen and to the rotation and did an excellent job.  Tom’s ERA was 1.97 in 64 innings and had a WHIP of .83.  Tom will be used as a starter next season, but the team hasn’t decided if it will be in A ball or SA to start. (64 IP)

Jack Lush – Jack was signed for $7,500 in December, 10 months after being named #8 prospect in LRS.  The team knew not to take much into that since being in the LRS for 3 years and never appearing in a game.  For the Monsters, he got 13 starts with 63.2 innings, but unlike the previous 3 his ERA was 4.66.  While the team still thinks he can amount to a backend starter, he is 22 and if he doesn’t improve, this might be his last year with the Monsters.  (63.2 IP)

Mauro Hernández – Mauro in his 2nd season with the Monsters split time between the rotation and the pen.  In 58.1 innings (1.1 more than last year) he had an ERA of 2.78 (5.21 last year) and a WHIP of 1.34(1.56 last year).  Mauro will again be back in SA as he is only 18 years old, but the team thinks his future looks bright. (58.1 IP)

Norberto Bermúdez –Norberto was given 3.1 million dollars to sign in June and he showed a bright future.  While only being 17, in 57.1 innings he had an ERA of 1.57 and gave up only 37 hits and no homers.  The team will definitely keep Norberto in SA for at least 1 more season. (57.1 IP)

Bo-young YI –Yi doesn’t have the peripherals that one looks for in a pitcher, ever since joining the organization in 2021 he has held his own.  This year while mostly pitching out of the pen after starting all last year, he had an ERA of 2.88 in 56.1 innings.   He is more a depth pitcher to help a minor league team at this point even though he is only 20, so the team will probably keep him around, but his time on the mound will be reduced even more.  (56.1 IP)

Alberto Nieves – Alberto was drafted with the 32nd pick in the 2nd round and signed for $340K bonus.  He split time between the pen and starting (see a theme).  In 54.2 innings, Alberto had a 3.95 and while he struggled at first, progressively got better.  He will be in SA again next year, but will only be a starter.  (54.2 IP)

Seitaro Honda – Seitaro was signed in January for a $500 bonus.  That proved to be great money spent as his ERA was .88 in 51.1 innings.  He is 21 years old so next season he may come out of the pen for the A team, or he might be inserted in the rotation to start with for the Monsters. (51.1 IP)

Kyu-cheol Na – Na was signed for $1.2 million bonus in February.  Being 18 the team saw a lot in him and his numbers the previous two years.  Well if this year is any indication, maybe they were right on him.  In 36.1 innings he had an ERA of 1.73, 9  saves, only 17 hits and 42 K’s.  The team has thoughts of putting him as a SP for the Monsters next year, but he could also remain in the pen, the one thing that is certain, he has a good future. (36.1 IP)

Arturo Mendoza – Arturo got into 9 games and had 31.2 IP with a .85 ERA before he got called up to A.  He will never see the Monsters again.  (31.2 IP)

Jerry Pearson – Jerry appeared in 15 games and pitched 22 innings.  In that time he only allowed 13 hits and had an ERA of 1.23.  Jerry will be 20 years old this year and has spent the last 3 years in SA ball, so he will attempt to make the jump to A ball, but if he fails, he is not guaranteed a spot back with the Monsters. (22 IP)

Miguel Gonzáles – Miguel came to the team from Cuba in 2020 and has been bouncing around in the lower minors ever since.  This year he stayed in SA and accumulated 21 innings pitched with a low ERA of 1.71.  While he is only 20, it is looking like his time with the organization is about to end soon if he doesn’t get his control better.  If he does that, then maybe Miguel will be in A next season. (21 IP)

Brandon Vale – In 3 years Brandon has gotten over 5 million dollars in bonus money so if he never makes the majors, he should be set.  Signed in January, Brandon appeared in 19 games, getting 10 saves with a 1.96 ERA in 18.1 innings.  He is going to come back either in the closer or setup role for the Monsters next year.  (18.1 IP)

Reynaldo Pagán –  A 5th round pick 2 years ago, Reynaldo hasn’t done much to impress the team.  While he hasn’t been a major disappointment, if he doesn’t improve over the winter, he will find it hard being back on the roster.  Last year he got in 7 games total with an ERA of 4.15.  (17.1 IP)

Yaichiro Ine – Ine was given a $1K bonus and pretty much was the teams lefty specialist.  He appeared in 30 games, but only accumulated 13 innings.  He had an ERA of 3.46 and a super high WHIP as when righties faced him, he got walloped .500/.606/.692.  He needs to show major improvement otherwise he will be unemployed before he can legally drink. (13.1 IP)

Cain Bright – Cain was signed in the offseason and got 2 starts for the Monsters.  He went 11.2 innings and dominated both games.  He was sent up to A.  He won’t ever be in SA again.  (11.2 IP)

Roberto Munóz – Roberto was the 5th pick in the 4th round this year and didn’t get much use.  He appeared in only 5 games totally 11 innings, with a 4.09 ERA.  While he will be back most likely in SA, the team told him if he improves his control and he will get much more time.  (11 IP)

Martín Rosado – Martin was signed to a $1.2 million bonus in June and played a few games for the Monsters in July.  He was then promoted to A, but after 19 games the organization that it better he get more time in SA.  Martin finished with 9 appearances at 9.2 innings for the Monsters with a 2.79 ERA.  He is still 19, so next year the team might let him start again in SA and if he does well promote him, though if he improves over the winter, he will be in A to start the year.  (9.2 IP)

Jason Reed –  Jason was a 12th round pick 2 years ago and hasn’t done much since joining the Monsters.  This year he appeared in 5 games totaling 7 innings with an ERA of only 1.29.  The team expects some improvement over the winter otherwise they have told Jason to look for new employment.  (7 IP)

Bob Fleming – Bob was an undrafted free agent who can throw 6 pitches and caught the eye of GM Abcarian.  He did not play much as he entered 5 games for 5 innings and a 1.80 ERA.  Bob will be back in SA next year, but the team can’t figure out if they want him to start or if they want him to be a lefty specialist.  Either way, Bob will be back with the Monsters.  (5 IP)

Sergio Portillo – Sergio was a 1st round pick in 2023.  The organization made a mistake by not having him start up in A, but had him start in SA.  He appeared in 2 games and got hammered as he was unhappy down there.  He will need to improve  his control  though if he wants to advance past A ball.  (1.1 IP)

Dan O’Toole, Sandro Marrache, Kent Todd – all cut not coming back (20 IP)