The leader of the BITBL crew has been nothing if not consistent to open the season. In four games (would have been five if not for a rain out in Boston), Harrison has gone 1-for-4 as many times. Along the way he has driven in just one run and accumulated a single extra base hit (a double against Atlanta on Friday). He has been relegated to the bottom portion of the lineup for the Pirates, batting eighth on Opening Day and seventh in the next three contests. He has yet to walk, has struck out three times and his OPS currently sits at a below replacement level position (.563).
Here’s where I remind you we’ve gotten just a week(ish) of baseball and small sample sizes are not anything to get overly excited about. For example, before going 3-for-6 yesterday, Kris Bryant, last year’s NL MVP, had just one hit in 19 plate appearances. Obviously Harrison is not on the same level as Bryant, but you get the idea.
Happ is no longer behind many on the top prospect list for the Chicago Cubs. He’s front and center at this point, playing for Triple A Iowa. It was a major jump for Happ, who played in single A advanced and Double A last year. The Iowa Cubs opened their season this week and Happ got off to a solid start, launching home runs in two of the first three games while driving in three, walking as many times as he’s struck out (twice) and slashing .273/.385/.818. Once again, small sample size and all, but that’s how you want to start your first gig at Triple A.
Walsh only pitched in six games at the Double A level last year but it was enough to get him an invite back. Pitching for the Birmingham Barons, the right-hander made his season debut on Friday and it was a good one. He was the first pitcher out of the bullpen and rewarded his manager with 2 1⁄3 innings of shutout work, which included five strikeouts.
Atkinson also got a promotion for this season, as he is pitching at the Single A level following a surprise signing with the Arizona Diamondbacks and audition in Rookie League. Atkinson is now with the Kane City Cougars, although he has yet to make an appearance in the teams first three games.
The 30-year-old outfielder’s future remains in limbo as he is not signed with a team as of now.