Conor Glassey answers questions
Hey everybody! After dozens of phone
calls, hundreds of hours and about 23,000 words on 215 different
players, I'm finally done with my state-by-state writeups. We're all a
bunch of draft zombies around here, but I'm happy to make my BA chat
debut. Feel free to ask about anything, but I'll probably focus mostly
on West Coast draft coverage, as that's been my primary focus these
past few months. Let's get this rolling...
Blackie (Cincinnati, OH): Hi Conor. Thanks for
the chat. I've seen at least a couple of mocks where Kent Matthes went
before guys like Josh Phegley, Carlos Ramirez, Angelo Songco, and other
junior bat-first guys. Considering how thin the college hitting is
alleged to be this year, how high could Matthes go?
We have Matthes as the 63rd-best
prospect in the draft, Songco's 64, Phegley's 77 and Ramirez is 156.
They're all pretty close though and teams that believe Phegley or
Ramirez can stick at catcher (there are concerns with both), could pop
them over Matthes because of the positional value. Same goes with
Songco, who has a better track record and�like you mentioned�all are
younger. As far as the earliest Matthes could go...being No. 63 slots
him into the second round and, being a senior, I would say that's
probably as high as he'll go.
joe (wisconsin): Just curious, you've got Ian
Krol at number 184 among pitchers, why so low? I saw him pitch in an
independant league game on May 31 against DI and Juco players, he
struck out 16 in less than 75 pitches. His fastball sat between 90-92
and he's got a nasty change up.
He's a wildcard in the draft, for sure.
He was 88-90 mph last summer, but was down to 86-88 this spring and
it's been tough for teams to see him as he's only been pitching on
Sundays in Wisconsin. I wouldn't put a lot of stock into his stats up
there, but if he really was 90-92, he could go higher than No. 184.
Still, I know teams are worried about the makeup issues after getting
kicked off his HS team. If you're investing that much money in a kid
(and Krol still wants top dollar), you have to be able to trust that
you can send him off to live away from home and be responsible enough
to keep his head on straight. That said, I like Ian. I've talked to him
for a couple articles and he seems like a good kid. Who hasn't made
mistakes as an 18-year-old? It happens, and I think he made the right
decision in not riding home with the student that had alcohol in his
car, but it still bit him because it was a second offense.
Brandon (Southern California): What do you see the Angels doing with their 2 1st rounders? Have you heard of the Angels being linked to any specific players?
Couple similar questions from Angels
fans, so I'll get this one. The team (and its fans) must be licking
their chops at the number of picks they have next week. The Angels pick
24, 25, 40, 42, 48, 80, 110, 141, 171 and 201, which should quickly
restock a farm system that we ranked 25th in this year's Prospect
Handbook. Historically, scouting director Eddie Bane prefers high
school players. We have them going with Mike Trout and Matt Hobgood in
our latest Mock Draft, but some other guys that could be available
there include: Tyler Skaggs, Everett Williams, Chad James, Reymond
Fuentes or Jio Mier.
Aaron (orange, ca): Conor, Im hearing the
Angels are very high on Tommy Joseph after his private workout here
over the weekend. Could they snag him with one of their first picks?
I'm a big Tommy Joseph fan and I could
see that happening, absolutely. He draws comparisons to Angels catcher
Mike Napoli, actually, in that he's a big kid with big-time power and a
big arm. He just became his school's full-time catcher for the first
time this season, so he's a bit of a project back there and he's a
stocky kid, so he'll have to work on it. He'll get every chance
because, like pretty much every other catcher, he loses a lot of value
if he has to move to first base. But he doesn't turn 18 until July, so
he's still young. The Rays have also been linked to him, as their
scouting director and AZ area scout also graduated from Joseph's
JimK (Missouri): When will you be posting more states to the draft map?
30 states are already up and there are a lot more in the hopper. Patience, young Jedi.
Fred (Ohio): What are the reports on catcher Carlos Ramirez's defense?
His defense actually gets pretty good
reviews, but his body is what has some teams a little worried. He's a
big kid that will need to watch his weight. He�s a good receiver, but
he's not very athletic and his arm is average at best. That said, he's
been an absolute horse for the Sun Devils this year. Transferring in
from Chandler-Gilbert, he took leadership of a great pitching staff and
calls his own games. Ramirez was the only Sun Devil to start all of the
team�s games this season, which is remarkable considering his position
and the heat in Arizona. The wear-and-tear and responsibility didn�t
slow him down at the plate and I'd take my chances with a guy like
that. I think he's going to be a great value in the draft.
Fred (Ohio): Who is your favorite player not in the BA top 200?
A few guys from my area stand out: I
enjoyed watching Washington right fielder Kyle Conley hit some
moonshots this spring, Arizona State lefthander Josh Spence is a real
easy guy to root for, BYU third baseman Steve Parker got some great
reviews and I have a soft spot for Yavapai JC righthander Merrill Kelly
after hearing he occasionally throws a borderline-eephus changeup.
Brett (Auburn, Al): What do you think the chances of Nick Franklin getting to Auburn are? Can he stay at shortstop at the pro level?
I'll say this: If he does end up at
Auburn, Nick Franklin is going to be an outstanding college player.
But, I think Franklin's going to go pretty good in the draft, which
will make him a tough get Auburn. He was one of the few players that
really shined at a recent Florida HS all-star game in front of about
100 scouts. He does a little bit of everything and plays hard - it's a
great package. The reports I got are that he can stay at short, yes.
Ace (Detroit, MI): How soon after the draft will the new Draft Almanac come out?
Thanks for asking, Ace. The Draft Almanac will come out this fall and will include all the draft signings from the 09 class.
Chris (Spokane, WA): Any buzz on guys here in the northwest? Seems like a down year.
This one's right in my wheelhouse,
Chris. The draft writeups I was in charge of this year were:
Washington, Oregon, Upper Rockies (ID, MT & WY), Arizona, Nevada,
New Mexico, Utah, Pacific Rim (HI & AK), Canada & Puerto Rico.
You're right - it is a bit of a down year in the Northwest.
Washington's two best guys both have big question marks: UW reliever
Brian Pearl is a small reliever that was inconsistent this year and
Evergreen HS outfielder Kyrell Hudson down in Vancouver, Wash. is a
real head-scratcher for scouts. Hudson is super athletic and has a lot
of tools, but there are some serious questions about his bat. And he
hasn't shown scouts that he loves the game. People disregard makeup
issues, but that's really important for a guy that is A) such a huge
project and B) going to have to be bought out of an Oregon State
baseball and football commitment. So it's thin at the top, but there's
still some really interesting depth out there. To me, some of the most
interesting guys in the NW are outside the top 200: Conley, the JUCO
arms, Matt Way and his awesome changeup at WSU, Kraig Sitton at Oregon
State and another couple toolsy, dual-sport high schoolers in Oregon
(Tym Pearson & Jordan Poyer).
Ryan (Abingdon, MD): Is there any player that
you've grown fond of while doing your draft coverage? Someone who you
think is currently undervalued, going to out perform their draft slot,
and could be a great value? Let's get a glimpse at your intuitive
Yeah, I love Max Walla. We have him
ranked as a fifth rounder right now, but I hear he's had some real
impressive workouts lately and could be moving up - which he would have
done a long time ago if he wasn't playing in the middle of nowhere
Trey (Seattle): Can you envision Brian Pearl going in the 2nd-3rd range and moving fairly quickly ala Joe Smith with the Mets a few years back?
I could see him going in the 2nd to 3rd round, but I don't think he'll be a quick mover, as he's so new to pitching.
Andy (Pennsylvania): Please tell me the Pirates aren't really taking Sanchez at 4, and good return for Nate?
Sanchez is good, but that would be a
huge reach and I think there are other signable guys out there that
would make sense if they're trying to avoid busting the bank in an
attempt to pay for international talent too. I don't see that happening
and maybe it's not even an option anymore, as trading McLouth frees up
a lot of money. I think that was a win-win trade.
Jon (Lexington, KY): What college has the most to lose based on recruits signing with pro teams?
Interesting question. Probably a better
one for John Manuel or Aaron Fitt, but here's my take...I think the
schools with huge classes (Arizona State and Florida, for example) are
safer than the small schools crossing their fingers that their one big
guy ends up on campus. I'm sure Sean McNally at Duke is sweating the
rumors regarding the Mariners working on a pre-draft deal with catcher
Steve Baron, for example.
Ryan (Abingdon, MD): What are the chances that
Raymond Fuentes gets drafted before the 2nd round? Is it common for a
Puerto Rican highschooler to get drafted that early? They're usually
pretty raw and I don't remember the last time it happened, but I've
only been following the draft for the past couple years.
I'd say the chances are pretty good.
Fuentes, who is related to Carlos Beltran, is a very toolsy, signable
player that's been linked to a couple teams in the supplemental (or
even late first) round. He's a speedy, ideal leadoff hitter that
profiles similarly to Johnny Damon. As for Puerto Rican players, they
do go pretty good. Here are some big leaguers from PR with their draft
round in parenthesis: Geovanny Soto (11), Yadier Molina (4), Edwin
Encarnacion (9), Alex Rios (1), Carlos Beltran (2) & Javier Vazquez
Fellow Wave Hater (Charleston, SC): So you're going to be one of those detailed chatters, ey? You'll never set records that way.
Haha...well, that's just depends on
what kinds of record you're talking about. But seriously, I appreciate
everyone's patience. I feel slow, but hopefully I'm making up for a
lack of quantity with some quality.
Raymond Fuentes (Puerto Rico): Would I be
getting this much attention, and be getting drafted as early as I'm
expected, if I wasn't related to Carlos Beltran? Or am I just that
Yeah, you would. The relation is just
something I like to mention because it's interesting. But honestly,
scouts don't care that Fuente's mom is cousins with Beltran. They care
about his tools.
Josh G (Sacto, CA): With the Mariners top 2
prospects being OF's, Ichiro signed to a long term deal and Gutierrez
and Balentien still being pretty young would the Mariners take Ackley
as a 1B, Take a college/Indy pitcher ho they believe can remain as a
starter or go in a different direction?
No, they'll take Ackley as an
outfielder. He's better than Gutierrez and Balentien. He's better than
Saunders and Halman, too. Depth is never a bad thing.
Trey (Seattle): where do you see Conley going,
6-8th? I havent heard anything on Jake Locker, I'm assuming no team is
gonna try and buy him off the football field?
Yeah, I think Conley goes in that 6-8
range. Someone will take a late chance on Locker, but he has his heart
set on playing football. It bummed scouts out when I asked about him
because he's so gifted athletically and just chooses to play a
different sport, but I got Kirk Gibson and "Matt Holliday with speed"
thrown on him. What a story...
Sean (Seattle): Aside from the somewhat
analogous case of Robert Stock of USC, is there any precedent of doing
what Verducci says Bryce Harper wants to do: getting a GED, going to
junior college, and being drafted at age 17? Can Harper pull this off?
I'd love to hear your take on all this.
That would be a great story and is
certainly a tantalizing development to follow. If that happens, I don't
think I'm going out on too much of a limb by saying Harper would easily
become the richest dude with a GED. For some history on the precedent
of such occurances, I'm cutting and pasting this from one of Jim
Callis' Ask BA features from a couple months ago...
"Harper, a sophomore catcher at Las Vegas High, already is regarded as
the top prospect for the 2011 draft and would go No. 1 overall in next
year's draft if he became eligible. But getting a GED diploma wouldn't
automatically allow him to enter the 2010 draft.
The only high school junior ever to get drafted, Jeremy Bonderman (an
Athletics first-rounder in 2001), was eligible because he obtained his
GED diploma and his high school class had graduated. The year before,
[Landon] Powell met the same requirements but major league teams didn't
realize he could enter the draft and thus didn't pick him. Stock
graduated a year early from high school but wasn't subject to the draft
before entering Southern California as a 17-year-old freshman. (And to
clarify on Stock: He didn't graduate from high school or get his GED,
instead entering Southern California via its resident honors program
after meeting the university's standards for admission.)
Harper could become eligible for the 2010 draft if he got his GED
diploma and then attended a junior college next spring, because all
juco players are subject to the draft. Neither Powell (who become a
first-round pick as a South Carolina senior) or Stock signed out of
high school, so I don't think their careers would affect any decision
Harper might make. But why not enjoy your senior year of high school
rather than cash in a year early? The money should still be there,
Eric (Dallas): Where will ASU RHP Mike Leake get drafted? Have you heard any teams linked to him at all?
Another one of my absolute favorites.
Mike Leake is a stud. He's an extremely athletic pitcher that pounds
the bottom half of the strike zone, gets a ton of groundballs and also
has the stuff to get swings and misses. He's a bulldog that wants the
ball, has a resilient arm and, if the season ended today, his 1.23 ERA
would be the best in the aluminum-bat era at Arizona State. I'd say the
earliest he goes is probably 10 (and both Strasburg and Leake could be
in the big leagues for the Nats in a hurry) and the longest he lasts is
slo Joe (Irvine,CA): Is it possible that Strasburg could pitch in a Major league game this year for the Nat's?
Possible? Sure. Likely? No. He's
probably not signing until Aug. 15, at which point there's only a few
weeks left. And why rush it? Not like they'll be playing for anything...
Eric (Dallas): How good is Jeff Malm and can he play somewhere other than first base?
Jeff Malm's a great hitter - but no, he's probably stuck there.
Alright, it's been two and a half hours. Time for some LIGHTNING ROUND!
JAYPERS (IL): What is the latest on Tate? MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo's latest Mock Draft has him falling out of the first round entirely.
It just wouldn't be a BA chat without a
JAYPERS question, now would it? Tate's price tag could cause him to
fall, but somebody will take a chance on that talent.
Tim (Daytona, FL): Why has Max Stassi dropped so much in many of the mock drafts?
Good question. Not sure which ones you're talking about, but we have him going 28 to the Red Sox in our latest Mock.
Big Dave (Irvine,CA): Is the term "draft and
follow" still pertinent? Are teams waiting to see a player during the
summmer before signing him in August ?
The old draft and follow (where teams
could pick a guy and let him go to JC for the year while retaining his
signing rights up until a week before the draft) is dead because of the
Aug. 15 signing deadline. However, yes, teams still monitor the
progress of their draftees in summer leagues in some cases.
Chuck D. (Toledo): What's your take on the enigma that has become Grant Green? Is he a Major League shortstop or not?
He didn't have the huge step forward
everyone was hoping for, but it was a solid season and yeah, I'd still
bet on him. Draftitis Happens (there's a shirt there).
Ryan (Abingdon, MD): I'm intrigued by David Renfroe. What round do you see him going? Pitcher or hitter?
He's not in my area, so I don't know a
ton about him - but my general philosophy with guys like that is to
always give them a chance to be position players. It's a lot easier for
a guy to step on the mound and be good after a couple years off than it
is to try and step in the batters box. That said, I'd really love to
see more teams give players a chance to go both ways.
Greg Pappas (Baltimore): Hi. Who are your top five prep arms in the draft, and why?
Turner, Matzek, Purke, Miller & Wheeler
Mike (Ohio): Will Marc Krauss be the best player to come out of Ohio University? You might remember alum Mike Schmidt?
I think you answered your own question there.
Adam (Hoboken): Adam Warren in the top 5 rounds?
Close - but not quite. He still has some time to shine, though.
Brad (Tempe): Where do you see Jake Barrett going in the draft and is there a chance he steps foot on ASU's campus next year?
Third round & probably not.
Josh G (Sacto, CA): Take Your Pick: Alex White, (Healthy) Kyle Gibson, Aaron Crow or Tanner Scheppers? Why?
Alright - it's been three hours. I had
a blast, but all good things must come to an end. Speed definitely
isn't one of my tools (unless we're talking about eating competitions).
It just takes time to read through all the great questions (and sorry
to those that didn't get them answered). Remember that Father's Day is
June 21. We have an awesome deal in our online store where, if you
spend $35, you get a free BA cooler. What dad wouldn't want that? Also,
be sure to check us out on Twitter!