Over the next few weeks, Mastersball will be making some changes. We are indeed giving the site an upgrade/re-design, and we are indeed pushing out towards a lot more daily support for a number of sports and games in addition to the stalwart columns that have been supporting your season-long play for 20-plus years.
That means the Hotpage will be grabbing the Monday slot back, looking at some players and movement with short pieces leading up to Spring Training. Of course, we will have our Top 250 Prospect List coming out before year's end, along with looks at the Rule 5 picks and the winter meetings, but this time, let's look at some pitchers to keep on your radar as our minds gear towards 2016 and our teams.
Daniel Norris (22, Tigers): The Jays #2 selection in 2011, Norris spent time with Toronto (1-1, 3.86 over 23.3 frames) last year along with 90.3 frames at Buffalo (3-10, 4.27) before being swapped to Detroit as part of the trade deadline deal that brought David Price to Rogers Centre. Norris then tossed 36.6 innings for the Tigers, going 2-1, 3.68. However, his strikeout-to-walk rate improved nicely, going from 1.50 to 3.68 with Detroit.
Aaron Nola (22, Phillies): The 7th overall selection in 2014 shot through the minors afte being drafted from LSU, going 14-7, 3.58 over 164.6 minor league innings before a call-up and 77.6 innings which produced a fine 6-2, 3.59 record with a 1.197 WHIP. Nola is not so overpowering (205 strikeouts over 242.6 professional innings), but he does appear to understand how to pitch at an advanced level relative to his age.
Carlos Carrasco (28, Indians): Older, and clearly the best known--and probably most frustratingly tried--among this list, Carrasco seemed to have turned a corner the second half of last year. After a decent first half of 10-7, 4.08 over 108.3 innings, Carrasco turned it up, going 4-5, 2.99 over 75.3 innings, and posting an 0.903 WHIP. He has arrived. Finally! We hope?
Raisel Iglesias (26, Reds): The Cuban import adjusted to American life in the midwest with a 3-7, 4.15 record over 95.3 innings, with 104 strikeouts to 28 walks (1.143 WHIP). The Reds are 2016's Mets, with a cluster of fine pitchers ready to emerge on the scene, and Iglesias will be at the core.
Tyler Glasnow (22, Pirates): The Bucs #5 selection in 2011, Glasnow blasted through three levels of minor league ball in 2015, going from Low-A to Triple-A while logging a 7-5, 2.39 record over 109.3 innings and 22 starts, striking out 136 while allowing just three homers. Glasnow might not make the big club out of camp, but he is definitely among the next generation of arms to watch.
Jerad Eickhoff (25, Phillies): A more obscure selection by the Rangers, in round 15 of the 2011 draft out of Olney Central College, Eickhoff was part of the Philadelphia bounty as a result of the Cole Hamels deal. Eickhoff went right into the rotation and logged 3-3, 2.65 totals over 51 innings with 49 punchouts. Eickhoff whiffed 475 over 578.3 minor league innings, posting a 1.221 WHIP in the process.