Via Jim Callis in the recent print edition of Baseball America -
[Phil] Hughes experienced his own ups and downs with the Peoria Javelinas. He earned AFL pitcher-of-the-week honors after his first outing and started the league’s all-star game, but he also got shelled by the Scorpions and missed a start with a torn fingernail.
Hughes mainly pitched off his 89-92 mph fastball and a plus curveball, a nice combination but not the 91-94 mph heater and knockout bender he showed down the stretch in Double-A two years ago. Whether he’ll regain his premium stuff once he stays healthy for an extended period remains to be seen. Whether he can stay healthy is uncertain, too, though he hasn’t had any arm-related problems since 2005, when he made two trips to the DL with shoulder tendinitis and a tired arm.
“I just don’t see how he dominated the lower levels of the minors so thoroughly,” a second scout said. “He’s not overpowering at all. But he has a solid fastball and the curveball is OK. I don’t see what all the fuss was about, but he’s probably still a No. 3.”
…I don’t see what all the fuss was about, but he’s probably still a No. 3…
Sort of rides along with what I wrote back on September 17th:
Phil Hughes…at his worst will have a major league career much like Carl Pavano and at his best will have a major league career like Andy Benes. And, in all likelihood, Hughes’ career will probably fall somewhere in the middle between Pavano and Benes…and mirror someone along the level of Aaron Sele.
Yeah, I know, I know, it’s also been reported that Hughes was “throwing 94, 95 with ease” in the AFL. So, who knows which report is true?
In any event, what do you think? Is Phil Hughes a future #3 starter, at best? Or, is he going to be an ace someday?