Sunday, August 2, 2015

Random Prospect Sunday - Fernando Miranda

It's still kind of amazing that in today's age of information that is so readily available to find out a professional player can largely fall through the cracks, but as I prepared for this week's player, that is exactly what I got, With that in mind, I expect this to be pretty short. Also, it kind of sucks when players are known by both their first and middle names depending on the source. Consistency. That's all I'm asking for, people.

So, let's dive into right-handed pitcher Luis Miranda. Or Fernando Miranda. Born in Mexico in September of 1994, Miranda is an undersized pitcher with a developing fastball/changeup combo. The Braves have had some degree of success scouting Mexico, which, despite a thriving Mexican League, does not produce many major leaguers each year. Daniel Castro, who was recently recalled, stands out but going way back, the Braves hit big on Vinny Castilla, who has 190 more homers than any other player from Mexico. They've also recently employed Ramiro Pena and currently Manny Banuelos.

I've yet to track down a signing date for Miranda, but he would have been part of the 2011 class so sometime between there and the beginning of the 2013 season, the Braves signed Miranda to a contract. He would make his professional debut in 2013 in the Dominican Summer League. Neither old or young for the DSL, Miranda was a fairly key cog on a pretty bad squad. He finished sixth on the team with K's despite starting just two games and was the leader in saves with five. I just want to point out that I really wish Miranda's teammate that year, Felix Falcon, could figure it out. What an amazing baseball name.

Miranda would skip past the Gulf Coast League in 2014 and head straight to Danville, Virginia. The move was smart considering Miranda's success and age. Miranda would respond with good numbers, including over a strikeout an inning and solid control. He was able to keep the ball down a bit better to the tune of a 46% groundball rate. It's not the kind of amazing numbers we get excited about, but it was positive results and as players move forward, you look for those.

Expected to make the move to Rome to open 2015, Miranda was not with the R-Braves when the season began. It may have been a simple numbers crunch or that Miranda didn't impress enough in spring training. Since then, he has made sporadic appearances with Rome, though he hasn't been used since June 15 and isn't on the DL. Overall, he is credited with five appearances and he has been roughed up nearly every time, giving up ten earned runs in 10.2 innings. He continues to rack up strikeouts (ten of them as well), but that's all you can say to shine up an awful 8.44 ERA. Well, his FIP is good at 2.45. A .410 BABIP will always look bad, especially in short sample sizes.

I'm not really sure why Miranda has been used so infrequently this year, nor why he sits on the Danville roster with no uniform number and an active designation. He was last moved from the GCL Braves to Danville on July 8, but has not appeared with either club. It's kinda strange. Maybe there was a suspension? No clue.

Like I said, Miranda does not have a significant amount of digital ink. I've heard that he has a nice fastball and change-up, but to what degree, I am not really sure. He's another arm to keep an eye on, but in a system full of arms, he doesn't look like a guy who will be knocking down the door into a prospect list anytime soon. In fact, there's a better than average chance, he'll be an ex-Brave by the time April of 2016 comes around.

More Random Prospects
Stephen Gaylor 
Tyrell Jenkins 
Tanner Murphy 

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