Los Angeles Angels prospects Barria, Long are all-stars

May 22, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; General view of baseballs in the Texas Rangers dugout before a game against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
May 22, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; General view of baseballs in the Texas Rangers dugout before a game against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Los Angeles Angels had two of their rising stars honored yesterday as they were named to the Midwest League All-Star team.

A pair of Los Angeles Angels prospects, Jaime Barria and Grayson Long, both right-handed pitchers for the Angels’ Class A affiliate Burlington Bees, were named to the Midwest League All-Star team, the league announced Tuesday. The All-Star game will take place on Tuesday, June 21 at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, home of the Minnesota Twins’ Class A affiliate. Barria and Long will pitch for the Western Division against the Eastern Division.

Barria, 19, is the Angels’ no. 13 prospect. He was signed out of Panama in 2013. His fastball sits in the low 90s, and is developing a change-up and curve ball.

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After pitching well in the Dominican Summer League in 2014, he was promoted to the Arizona League Angels, where he dominated, going 3-0 with a 2.00 ERA and an absurd 10.33 strikeout-to-walk ratio in six starts. He was again promoted, this time to the Rookie level Orem Owlz. There he scuffled for the first time in his career, going 2-4 with an ERA of 6.21 and allowing more than 12 hits per nine innings.

Despite Barria’s struggles in Rookie ball, the Angels decided to have him begin the season at Class A Burlington, and he has rewarded them for their faith. Despite being almost three years younger than the average Midwest League player, he’s gone 5-3 with a 3.40 ERA. There are reasons to be worried, as he’s only struck out 32 batters in 53 innings, but as he matures physically his stuff will get better and he should start missing more bats. Ultimately, Barria is an exciting prospect who might become a solid middle-of-the-rotation type starter in a few years.

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Long was taken in the third round of last year’s draft out of Texas A&M, where he was their ace, and is now the Halos’ no. 12 prospect. Long is 6’5″, and he uses his tall frame to get good tilt on his fastball, which sits in the low 90s. He also has an above-average changeup and is developing a slider. He has a clean, mechanically sound delivery that allows him to throw strikes consistently.

After only throwing 19.2 innings in Rookie ball last season, Long has been on fire in his first full season. He’s 3-3 with a 1.58 ERA, and has struck out 45 batters in 40 innings of work. He’s allowing right around six hits per nine innings and has struck out 10.1 batters per nine innings. He’s currently on the 7-day DL with an undisclosed injury.

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Long projects as another middle-of-the-rotation type starter, although he probably has a little more upside than Barria. Long’s track record of success in the SEC and now in Class A suggests that he will move quickly through the system, and could be contributing to the big league team as soon as next season, although 2018 seems more likely.

Next: Angels hitting needs

So there is hope on the horizon in Los Angeles Angels lower farm system.