SAN FRANCISCO -- Tim Federowicz has spent nearly a decade in professional ball and he entered this year with nearly 700 innings behind the plate in the big leagues. That made Federowicz a nice depth piece this spring, and when Buster Posey and Nick Hundley stayed healthy most of the first five months, the profile made the 30-year-old a valuable addition for Triple-A Sacramento.
Federowicz played 77 games for the River Cats and spent most of the season serving as their starting catcher. He helped develop some of the organization's most advanced pitching prospects, so recently I asked him for scouting reports on a few guys we may see next year and one we have seen plenty of in recent weeks ...
Chris Stratton (5.11 ERA in Triple-A, 4.07 ERA in the big leagues): "He had quite a few outings like this down there where he was (going deep into games) and you see that with guys that have good out pitches. Those types of guys don't have to end up throwing a lot of pitches to get guys out. With him, it's kind of strike one, strike two, curveball for strike three, so it's a little bit easier to go deeper into games with that out pitch ... He definitely has a sneaky fastball with good cut on it. He has a good sinker to go with it, too. It's just a good mix and you don't really know which way (the fastball) is going to go. When he's really throwing it well, the ball really planes out well. A lot of guys' fastballs will sort of drop towards the end but his kind of planes out."
Right-hander Tyler Beede (4.79 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 83 strikeouts in 109 innings, 3.57 ERA in his final month): "He has great stuff. He started strong and had a little bit of a rough stretch in the middle, but he was actually pitching really well when he had that unfortunate (groin) injury. He's got good movement on the fastball and he'll four-seam, two-seam, with a curveball and a changeup that was coming along nicely. We made a point to use (the changeup) more and there's also a cutter. He's pretty unique. Sometimes you see righties with a really good slider but he's got the pretty good curveball. He's definitely got the stuff to get guys out here. It's just a matter of getting more experience. Guys like him, they've just got to pitch and experience stuff, and he did that a little bit with a rough patch where he was walking batters. His fastball was moving a little too much and he had to make the adjustment and get back to throwing strikes. He did, and he was able to put it all together towards the end."
Left-hander Andrew Suarez (3.55 ERA in Triple-A, 3.30 ERA across two levels, 80 strikeouts in 88 2/3 Triple-A innings): “He’s got a good fastball and real sharp slider that’s short and has good depth. He’s got a good feel for pitching, too. He has the stuff to definitely get guys out here. He could get guys out right now with what I’ve seen down there, but it’s all about timing with some of the young guys.”
Asked for a sleeper prospect, Federowicz picked Tyler Rogers, a submarine-style right-hander who had a 2.37 ERA: “I really like him. He just gets guys out. He doesn’t throw very hard — about 85 (mph), but his 85 plays a lot harder than that and he’s got good command of his fastball. I’ve faced plenty of submarine guys but his ball moves different than any I’ve ever seen. It’s just real sharp and downward, nothing side to side. It’s just straight down and sometimes it’ll cut a little bit to the lefties. It’s pretty impressive and he’s able to get it to the corners.”