Earlier in the week, the Milwaukee Brewers promoted Cy Sneed to high A Brevard County. Late last night his replacement was announced, as second round pick Cody Ponce was promoted to Wisconsin to pitch in his place. With this rapidly quick promotion, the 21-year-old Ponce may be set on the fast track to the major leagues.
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When Ponce was first drafted, many thought that he was a steal for the Brewers in the second round. Before the draft publications like MLB.com had Ponce ranked as the 32nd best prospect in the draft and many thought that he had first round potential, but he fell all the way to the Brewers in the second round.
With a intimidating build of 6’6”, 240 pounds, Ponce dominated at Division II Cal Poly Paloma this past season. Not only did he lower his ERA by nearly two points to 1.44, but he also was able to control the strike zone. He walked just 14 hitters this season in 62.1 innings compared to the 29 walks in 75 innings that he had as a sophomore.
So far as a professional, Ponce has had success in very limited action. Pitching for the Helena Brewers, he has four strikeouts in two starts (five innings) and he has allowed two runs. Maintaining his control of the strike zone, he has yet to walk a batter as he boasted a 0.80 WHIP. This aggressive approach had to help in his quick promotion.
MLB.com has yet to update their organizational prospect lists, but Ponce is sure to be top-10 in the Brewers’ system. He throws hard with a mid-90s fastball and has a possibility for three plus pitches that help to project him as a top of the rotation starter. Many Brewers’ pitchers have moved up slowly in the past, but just as this promotion was quick Ponce has the capability to fly through the rest of the system, too.