2008 ranking: #6
School: Wellington High School (FL)
Became a Cardinal: Selected in the supplemental first round (46th overall) of the June, 2005 First-Year Player Draft.
Selected 2008 stats
Staff comments (individual rankings in parens)
Dustin Mattison (21): Last season's number six prospect, Herron's struggles at Double-A seems to have tarnished his stock somewhat. Pitching most of the season as a 21-year-old, he was very effective in 56.2 innings at Palm Beach. Herron posted a superb 2.70 ERA while holding his opponents to a .234 average in the Florida State League. The 2005 draft pick felt some growing pains when promoted to Springfield. In 15 starts, he posted a .500 record to go along with a 5.20 ERA. Texas League hitters batted over .300 against him while he surrendered 101 hits in 81 innings.
Yes, his Double-A debut left a lot to be desired. But to be fair he was only 21 years old in a hitter's league. In the more age appropriate Florida State League, he did hold his own. Looking at it now, maybe dropping him 15 spots in my rankings was somewhat drastic.
Ray Mileur (29): Split playing time between Springfield and Palm Beach. He was promoted to Springfield in May, where he struggled with a 5-5 record and a 5.21 ERA, before being reassigned to the Palm Beach Cardinals, where he went on to pitched 27 effective innings before his promotion to Double-A again. Herron finished the 2008 season with a combined 7-7 record with a 4.17 ERA. A good season, even though I was expecting better numbers initially when he was promoted to Springfield. Herron will likely start the season in Springfield's rotation next year.
Message board community (25): Herron split time between high A Palm Beach where he was strong and AA Springfield where he struggled mightily. Herron's strength has been great control that resulted in low walk rates. That attribute seems to have abandoned him while at Springfield as his walk rate nearly doubled and his hits given up soared also.
Herron recuperated strongly from his weak AA showing by pitching in the Hawaiian Winter League and putting up a microscopic 0.69 ERA. That strong showing should most definitely earn him another shot at AA Springfield to start the 2009 season. - CariocaCardinal
Brian Walton (25): To expand on Dustin's point slightly, the jump from Palm Beach to Springfield is considered by many to be the most difficult move in the system for a pitcher. Even so, for the number six prospect in the system, it would have been great and should have not been surprising for Herron to take the Texas League by storm. Didn't happen, though.
Herron did excel in the Hawaii Winter League this fall, though in all fairness, it was only 13 innings. He also posted his best regular season marks during his final month, August. As a result, Herron has some wind in his sails heading into spring training.
To see our entire list of 40 prospects, click here. You can also read each of the voters' philosophies in making their selections.
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