Jim Shonerd: Hey everybody. Let's get this show on the road.
- Tim Hop (PA): It looks like Astros might have received there future SS in Jonathan Villar. What is his upside and is he Astros future SS
Jim Shonerd: There's little doubt Villar has the defensive chops to be a big league shortstop. It's just a question of how the bat comes along. He takes big hacks for a guy with little power.
He's only 19, so there's time, but he'll have to start making more contact eventually.
- Eric K (Chicago): Desmond Jennings has had a less than spectacular season thus far. Have expectations dimmed for him
or can we expect a bounce back 2011 with the Rays?
Jim Shonerd: I wouldn't say they've dimmed, but his lack of power for a supposed five-tool guy does raise an eyebrow. He's only got three homers all year and Durham is a pretty homer-friendly park. But he's shown he can handle Triple-A pitching, so there's not much left for him to prove in the minors.
- Derek (Houston): Ian Krol has been having an amazing seaon in Low A ball for the A's this year. What i find more amazing is that he just turned 19 this past May. What major league pitcher would Krol draw the best comparision to and would you project Krol as being a top of the rotation starter in the majors?
Jim Shonerd: Wouldn't call him a front-of-the-rotation guy, more like a No. 3 whose stuff plays up thanks to his competitiveness and feel for pitching. His fastball has only average velocity, sitting around 88-91 mph, but he gets good sink on it and his curve and changeup are real weapons.
- Jose (Honduras): In any other organization, is Jesus Montero getting Major League at-bats by now? Do you think he gets
traded or is he in the majors next season?
Jim Shonerd: Maybe in some of them, but not too many I think. He's just now been catching up to Triple-A over the last couple months, so there would've been little impetus to promote him early. The Yankees have demonstrated they'd deal him for the right piece (Cliff Lee
in this case), but my gut feel is they hold on to him now.
- Greg (LA): Explain the logic - Dotel (a two month rental) for McDonald (just as good) plus Lambo (who immediately made the Prospect Sheet).
Jim Shonerd: That's a tough one. Dotel should be a useful piece, but they definitely sold low on McDonald and Lambo.
- Larry W (Atlanta): With Rickie Weeks having a bounce back year, what happens with Lawrie? Do the Brewers move him off
2B or do they keep him there?
Jim Shonerd: I'd say Lawrie could get moved to an outfield corner regardless of Weeks' performance, but the Brewers already have Ryan Braun and now Corey Hart signed to multi-year deals, so it'll be interesting. Weeks is about to enter his final arbitration year and will be a free agent after the 2011 season, though there's been
reports an extension is possible. Back to Lawrie, he's a below-average fielder right now (his 20 errors are the most among Southern League second basemen) and his bat is well ahead of his glove in terms of being
close to ready.
- Thomas N. (New York, NY): I dare you to answer my question. Especially since I ask about 5 questions every hot sheet, and have never been answered. What's the upside of Manny Banuelos? Does he have any (present day, not prime) Johan Santana in him?
Jim Shonerd: You're off the schneid, Thomas. Banuelos' upside looks more like a middle-of-the-rotation guy. His changeup has been his best pitch pitch and his curveball and fastball are average, but his command and pitchability give him a pretty good chance of reaching that potential.
- Scott (Calgary): How much progression has Oscar
Tejeda made this season? Is he going to garner any consideration for the Top 100 and is he on the cusp of Boston's top 5?
Jim Shonerd: Tejeda's been a nice comeback story after he'd fallen off the radar a bit thanks a couple of uninspiring, injury plagued seasons. Not sure I'd run him up as a Top 100 guy, but he's got some tools with a quick bat and a feel for the zone.
- Ben (Leland Grove): Looking at the picture above, is Harper really going to be the only player on the front of next
year's Handbook, or is that merely a prototype?
Jim Shonerd: Actually, the entire book is going to be about Bryce Harper. Just kidding. I'm sure that's just a mockup.
- Tony (Atlanta): Who do you see as being your "Top 4" candidates for BA's Player of the Year? It would seem to me that they would be Trout, Teheran, Lamb, and Myers, with Trout being the
obvious winner, but am interested to see if there's someone else that surpasses any of those candidates. Thanks for answering!!
Jim Shonerd: Hellickson and Dom Brown are in that mix as well. We should be making our final decision on the minor league PoY within the next few days, though the story won't run until closer to the
end of the season.
- J.P. (Springfield, IL): You're on the spot. The MILB POY award is being given out today. Pick one - Montero, Trout, or other?
Jim Shonerd: One more PoY question … the field was really strong this year, about 10 or 11 guys with deserving resumes none
of which were head and shoulders above the rest. My personal choice was
Wil Myers, with Trout second. His numbers as a teenage catcher are impressive as it is, but what really swayed me was how he's stepped up after moving up a level. He's hitting .390/.486/.512 with Wilmington, whose park is tough to hit in.
- Ryan (California): How does Tyler Chatwood project?
Jim Shonerd: Has the stuff and the moxie to be a frontline guy if he tightens his command a bit, though his size (5-foot-11, 175 pounds) and arm action cause some concerns about durability.
- Jon (Toronto, Ont): I've been trying to wrap my head around the Gose for Wallace trade for the last two weeks. Can you please explain it for me?
Jim Shonerd: It's a gamble for sure. The Jays are banking on Gose translating those tools into production. Wallace is a safer pick to pan out, but he's going to be pretty one-dimensional whereas Gose, if he works out, could be more.
- Dan (Chicago): Which NL rookie has impressed you the most this season Buster Posey, Starlin Castro, or Jason Heyward
Jim Shonerd: Tough call, I'll go with Posey though.
- Cody Vandommele (Tillsonburg): Where does Zach Stewart project to fit into a rotation? (i.e. Number 2, 3, 4?)
Jim Shonerd: Probably a No. 3. Good sinking fastball, but his secondary offerings look average.
- wayne (Camarillo): What ever happened to the A's Ynoa?
Jim Shonerd: Well … it's just come out that Ynoa's going to have Tommy John surgery. Assuming he doesn't pitch again until late next year, if at all, he'll have thrown a grand total of nine pro innings within his first three years after signing. Obviously he's still
young, but that's a lot of lost development time.
- Ryan (Dallas): Rank these three Royals as far as who you think will be the best all-around hitter in five years: Hosmer, Moustakas, Myers
Jim Shonerd: Hosmer, Myers, Moustakas. Could put those guys in any order though.
- Travis (Spokane, WA): Whats your thoughts on Mariners prospect Johermyn Chavez? Is he a legitimate prospect or is he
a bench player in the majors? He has put up great numbers in High Desert but i have learned to take those numbers with a grain of salt. Thanks in advance for answering my question.
Jim Shonerd: He's got plus power, but contact issues hold him back. And you hit on the important point of not overreacting to
guys putting up big numbers with High Desert.
- Mike (NJ): Obviously Moore has a great fastball, but how do his other pitches project to grade out as he furthers his developement?
Jim Shonerd: He's got a hammer curveball that might be even better than his fastball. His changeup is effective enough and has some action to it. The big thing will be to see how he responds when he's facing hitters with more mature approaches than guys in Single-A. Commanding the zone is the only question with him.
- jared (philly): With Ryan Howard an obvious roadblock in Philadelphia, is Jonathan Singleton more apt to move to the
outfield or moved as a trade chip in phillies annual deadline deal for a
Jim Shonerd: Indications are he's athletic enough that he could handle a corner outfield spot … but I try not to get too caught up about where guys in low A would fit in the big league lineup.
Jim Shonerd: Thanks for the questions everybody. Enjoy the weekend and we'll see you back here for another prospects chat next Friday. And of course, be sure to keep checking our Draft Blog and Twitter feed for all the latest draft signing deadline news.