To my view, Harvey is the top prospect in the system. He's a four-pitch guy with a plus fastball who made progress with his secondary offerings in 2011 and pitch sequencing. (Harvey picture courtesy Michael Baron.)
den Dekker, a strong defender in center, by contrast is third at his position in the upper minors behind both Kirk Nieuwenhuis, who has shown more power and average, and Juan Lagares has hit for more average. After hitting .296/.362/.494 in 67 games in advanced-A St. Lucie, strikeouts ate his batting average at double-A where his average dipped to .235/.312/.426. He fanned 91 times in 72 games in double-A, or 29% of his plate appearances.
Andy Martino in the Daily News, emailed Paul DePodesta for comment on den Dekker. DePodesta responded in part:
"Matt surprised us first by showing his readiness for AA just halfway through the season and then surprised us again that his production was basically the same at AA than at the Florida State League - he didn't miss a beat. The only thing that dropped off was his singles rate and he struck out a few more times, but he maintained his power (in fact, some doubles and triples in the Florida State League turned into homers in the Eastern League) and his walk rate.
Matt has the chance to be a complete player. He already excels defensively in CF - that part of his game is Major League ready. Offensively, he has the chance to play with both power and speed."
Here are the rates DePodesta is talking about:
Sure enough, his homer rate increased from 2% in advanced A to 3.5% in double-A, but his overall extra-base hit rate dipped slightly from 10.9% to 8.6%. Indeed, his single rate, something I rarely look at in isolation dipped in double-a relative to advanced A. It also is nearly half of his rate in the SAL. Partly this is a result of much better fielders at the higher level. Much of the variation in single-rate is captured by BABIP.