Although the Braves’ farm system was ranked number 27 in the league after the Matt Olson trade, there’s plenty to be excited about when it comes to the minor-league talent. Let’s get into some of the top performers in Gwinnett, Mississippi, and Rome.
Chadwick Tromp, picked up by the Braves last September, is off to a sizzling start with the Stripers. He’s slashed .293/.317/.616 with nine homers so far. In a brief major league stint with the Giants last season, Tromp underwhelmed, but it’s looking like he’s improved his strikeout-to-walk ratio significantly since then. He provides the Braves with catching depth and an intimidating bat when he’s hot.
Jared Shuster, the Braves’ 2020 first round pick, may have been forgotten by some because of the emergence of another 2020 selection, Spencer Strider. But the Wake Forest product has been plugging away in the minors, posting an elite 2.14 ERA. While he hasn’t struck out as many batters per nine innings as he did last year, Shuster can still find ways to miss plenty of bats:
Jared Shuster: 12 K's in 5 IP!
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) April 17, 2022
The 23-year-old prospect seems to be rapidly figuring it out and could get an opportunity in Gwinnett soon if he keeps this up.
He may not be on your radar, but 24-year-old Landon Stephens has been tearing it up in Rome this season. After going undrafted in the shortened 2020 draft, the Braves signed him to a contract out of Miami of Ohio. Stephens has crushed 13 homers in only 36 games for the Braves’ high-A affiliate. His positional versatility is a bonus as well — Stephens has played all over the infield (except for catcher) and in both corners of the outfield.
Landon Stephens doing Landon Stephens things.
Longball got all of that one and we’re out in front over the Renegades. pic.twitter.com/WnbRcdbnAv
— Rome Braves (@TheRomeBraves) May 25, 2022
Stephens hasn’t gotten much recognition as a prospect, despite a nonstop assault of the baseball in his minor-league career. In 141 games between Augusta and Rome, he’s hit 34 bombs and racked up over 100 RBIs. His minor-league slash line is an impressive .245/.358/.506. If he keeps this up, Stephens will gain a lot more attention.
Photo: Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire