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Pastornicky showing well at AAA Gwinnett

Braves shortstop prospect Tyler Pastornicky

It still a relatively small sample size but IMG Academy baseball program alum Tyler Pastornicky continues to produce at the AAA level. The 21 year old shortstop is hitting for a .441 avg with a .486 On Base Percentage in his first 8 games. Pastornicky, known for his solid defense, line drive approach and above-average runner, has also swiped 4 bags in as many attempts giving him 24 stolen bases at two different levels this year.

Below is a collection of excerpts with links to recent articles regarding the Braves prospect and his hot start for the Gwinnett Braves. -While everyone was trading trade rumors...

The Braves quietly movedTyler Pastornicky from Mississippi to Gwinnett yesterday. Pastornicky was ripping AA apart hitting .299/.345/.414 with 6 homers and 36 RBI and 20 steals in 28 attempts so he was definitely ready.

His spring was good enough to keep him until the last day of camp before sending him out to the M-Braves where he played 38 games after coming over from Toronto in theYunel Escobar trade. When that trade was madeBaseball America wrote that

"He's an above-average runner with 108 stolen bases and 78 percent success rate in 251 career games. At shortstop, he has good instincts, plus range and an average arm. Pastornicky's line-drive stroke makes him a potential .275 hitter . . . In a best case example, he projects as a top-of-the-order hitter who provides sound defense."

John Sickles over at said in June that Pastornicky is a:

“. . .fundamentally sound and a “baseball rat” type who hustles, is adept at “little ball” (he's a great bunter), and plays above his tools. . .He makes contact and his strikeout rate is low, which is often a marker for players who can exceed expectations. . . .draws good reviews from scouts for his defense, including his range. Interestingly, his range factors at shortstop are consistently below average the last two years.”

Atlanta Journal Constitution - Atlanta Braves blog

This and that

Minor league shortstopTyler Pastornicky has been tearing it up in Triple-A Gwinnett since his call-up from Mississippi. In four games, he's gone 8-for-19 (.421) with three RBIs and four runs scored. He had a three-hit night on Friday night. Last night's Gwinnett game in Norfolk was rained out so they'll be playing a DH tonight. If he keeps this up, Pastornicky could put himself in position for a possible September call-up. - Gattis and Pastornicky Lead the Way

Tyler Pastornicky SS, Gwinnett Braves - 11-27, 3 RBI, BB, 2 SB - The 21 year old earned a promotion to AAA after hitting .299 with a .345 OBP, .759 OPS, and 20 stolen bases in 355 at bats for Mississippi. He made the transition look easy, hitting .407 with a .836 OPS in his first week with Gwinnett. The only knock you could find was that none of his 11 hits went for extra bases, but his .429 OBP and 2 stolen bases were great numbers for a top of the order hitter. - Can Tyler Pastornicky help the Braves Already?

Pastornicky was just 20 when the Braves acquired him last year, but they immediately pushed him to Double-A following the trade, and he held his own there. Returning to the level to open 2011, he hit .299/.345/.414 with a 34/24 K/BB in 90 games, also stealing 20 bases.

Since that's pretty good for a defense-oriented shortstop, the Braves promoted Pastornicky to Triple-A Gwinnett last week, and he's gone a cool 15-for-34 in his first eight games, also stealing four bases in as many attempts.

Given that he's an impressive defender at shortstop as well, it's quite possibly that Pastornicky could already be the best shortstop in the organization despite being just 21 years and seven months old. That's not to overreact to eight games, of course, but he's now hit .311/.357/.416 across two levels while going 24-for-32 on the bases and playing good defense at shortstop-one could easily imagine that translating into better production than the .211/.247/.312 line put up by Braves shortstops this year. That line is good for a mere .249 wOBA, worst in the majors. - Pastornicky swipes second base (Click the link to see the video clip)

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