Tracking Tampa's top prospects 

April, 19, 2013

Wil MyersAP Photo/Carlos OsorioTampa is counting on Wil Myers and other top prospects at Durham.
Durham hosted an 11 a.m. "Education Day" game on Thursday against Charlotte, giving me an opportunity to see a few of Tampa's top prospects, including the two major names they acquired in the James Shields/Wade Davis trade.

• Durham starter Jake Odorizzi showed four pitches, but nothing was plus or even truly above average. His fastball was straight at 89-92, touching 93 in the fourth, and he struggled badly with command throughout his outing. Early in the game, he worked mostly with an 83-85 mph slider, trying to backdoor it to lefties, and an 80-82 mph straight change. Later in the outing, he flipped a few slow curveballs, with good depth but perhaps too slow to be more than a show-me pitch.

Unfortunately, none of the other three offerings is a swing-and-miss pitch -- he took advantage of a bad Charlotte lineup more than anything else. He had some success when elevating the fastball, but that's a bad formula against big league hitters who hit mistakes out of the park.

Odorizzi's delivery is very clean and simple, with a little deception from how long he hides the ball and very good extension out front when he releases the ball. He stays online to the plate with a consistent landing spot. There seemed to be a plan in place to work hitters side to side and up and down, but his trouble locating the fastball meant he couldn't fully execute it.