Minor League Pitcher and Hitter of the Week: June 10-16

For the first time all season, a player in the Dominican Summer League is our Minor League Hitter of the Week.

JUPITER, FLORIDA - MARCH 17, 2024: Quinn Mathews #68 of the St. Louis Cardinals throws a pitch during the seventh inning of a spring training Spring Breakout game against the Houston Astros at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium on March 17, 2024 in Jupiter, Florida. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images)

We’ve entered an interesting time of the baseball season. 

Specifically, in the past couple of weeks, teams have started to promote their top performers to the next level, even skipping to the Majors, to see what they’re truly capable of. Aside from that, we are entering the dog days of summer, and teams are suffering from injuries to key players left and right. 

With the trade deadline a little over a month away, and teams now wanting to showcase the depth of their system, the need for their prospects to perform is far more important than before. 

Lucky for most, we’re still seeing dominant stretches across the Minor Leagues. Some of the top performers might now be playing for their next opportunity at cracking the big leagues. 

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For more information on the Top Prospects that find themselves on Just Baseball’s Top 100, you can find that list here.

Pitcher of the Week: Quinn Mathews (LHP) – St. Louis Cardinals (High-A Peoria Chiefs)

Weekly Stats: 2 GS, 12.2 IP, 9 H, 1 BB, 19 K
Season Stats: 11 GS, 68.1 IP, 17 BB, 103 K, 2.24 ERA, 13.6 K/9

Quinn Mathews has now entered an elite group. This is his second time being featured on Just Baseball’s Minor League Players of the Week, and that is not something that should be taken lightly.

All jokes aside, 2024 has been a great year for the young left-hander in the St. Louis Cardinals farm system. Known as an organization that has always been desperate for starting pitching, they have been able to brew up a couple of bright spots in the Minor Leagues, and Mathews could be the one who helps push that narrative out of the door.

Coming out of his 150+ pitch Super Regional performance in 2023, his plus changeup was known to be his bread-and-butter pitch. As he has progressed into professional baseball, he has been able to translate that over and is a big reason why he can not only strike out almost 14 K/9 but generate a GB% hovering around 50% throughout his 2024 season thus far.

Hitter of the Week: Angel Guzman (OF) – San Francisco Giants (Dominican Summer League Giants)

Weekly Stats: .579/.680/1.316, 3 HR, 11 RBI, .737 ISO, 350 wRC+
Season Stats: .487/.583/.974, 4 HR, 17 RBI, .487 ISO

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Unlike our Pitcher of the Week, we have a first-timer with Angel Guzman. For the first time this season, we are referencing a performance out of the Dominican Summer League.

I need to preface this by reminding our readers that players in the DSL are playing organized baseball for the first time. Prior to signing their professional contracts, most of their baseball experience is purely recreational and, most of the time does not involve traditional baseball equipment. So when you see performances like this from someone in the DSL, it should pop up on your radar.

Guzman was the headliner of the San Francisco Giants International Signing class back in 2023 and is starting 2024 on a tear. While the stats look good on paper, it is what he is showing on video that really stands out.

The access to video and data from the Dominican Summer League is limited, but Guzman looks very polished as a young hitter. I do not believe it will be long before we are able to see Guzman stateside.

Honorable Mentions:

Pitcher: Luis Palacios (LHP) – Miami Marlins (Double-A Pensacola Blue Wahoos)
Weekly Stats: 2 GS, 12.0 IP, 7 H, 1 BB, 10 K

Pitcher: Austin Peterson (RHP) – Kansas City Royals (Double-A Northwest Arkansas Naturals):
Weekly Stats: 2 GS, 11.2 IP, 8 H, 0 BB, 11 K, .190 opp BA

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Hitter: Logan Wagner (1B/3B) – Los Angeles Dodgers (Single-A Rancho Cucamonga):
Weekly Stats: .524/.600/1.238, 4 HR, 7 RBI, .714 ISO, 354 wRC+

Hitter: Ryan Clifford (1B) – New York Mets (Double-A Binghamton Rumble Ponies):
Weekly Stats: .353/.538/1.480, 2 HR, 7 RBI, .588 ISO, 272 wRC+