Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Kevin Frandsen Off to a Hot Start

There has been a lot of ink for some hot prospects that have been called up this year in the majors. There is Ike Davis and Carlos Santana and Mike Stanton and Buster Posey and of course, Stephen Strasburg. But what about Kevin Frandsen? Who? Yeah, that is about par for the course for the San Jose native who was called up by the Angels 17 games ago after the Red Sox gave up on him and put him on waivers.

Frandsen has never been high on anyone's scouting report. He wasn't drafted until the 12th round back in 2004. But he burned through the minors and then got to the majors as early as 2006. He also got looks in 2007, 2008 and 2009 for the Giants but never stuck. A major injury (achilles tendon) in 2008 really set him back and he lost the entire year except for one at bat for the Giants in the last game of the season.

But Fandsen has always performed well in the minors and his career line there is .314/.377/.446. He's not a great fielding third baseman, but he gets on base and gives you solid play. The Angels started the year with Brandon Wood at third and the poor kid just withered. Wood has a .168 OBP and his OPS+ is an amazingly low 2. Maicer Izturis wasn't the answer as he posted an 89 OPS+ so the Angels had nothing to lose by trying Frandsen. And boy has he ever delivered!

Frandsen has participated in 17 games but has only started 14 of them. In those 14 games, he's had five multi-hit games and has hit safely in 11 of them and has reached base in 12 of them. He's batting .370 with an OBP of .408. The Angels have won nine of those fourteen games.

Give the Angels credit for thinking outside of the box in plucking Frandsen from the Red Sox trash heap. It was a move necessitated by having no one else in their organization to play third and they have won themselves some games by giving Frandsen an opportunity. He is making the most of it so far.

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