2012 Minor League Player of the Year Chat
Hey everyone. Thanks for stopping by and thank you for all the interest in how we pick the Minor League POY.
@Jaypers413 (IL): I would be curious to know
how Oscar Taveras missed out on this honor. Just a couple of his
attributes - he was skipped a level at age 19 after winning the MWL's
batting title, then won it for a second year in a row in the Texas
League. He never went more than three games without a hit this entire
year (which occurred only once), struck out only 56 times in 477 AB's,
as opposed to 52 times in 308 AB's last year, and is considered to be a
true five-tool talent in every sense of the word. Finally, he is the
second youngest player in the league. Thanks for the chat.
Hi Jaypers. Most of what you said is true
(although five-tool may be stretching things with Taveras' defense), but
most of what you said explains why Taveras is a great prospect. It
doesn't by itself explain why he's the Minor League Player of the Year.
Yes he skipped a level, and yes he struck out less. But this is not our
No. 1 prospect in the game award, we award that in February when we
unveil our Top 100 Prospects list. The Player of the Year award is given
to the top prospect who had the best season.
jason (muskegon, mi): How close was Oscar Tavares to the top spot? How did the voting breakdown?
Taveras and Profar were the next two in
some order. Billy Hamilton's unreal season got some mentions, and if Dan
Straily hadn't been promoted to the big leagues as early as he was, he
would have likely gotten even more consideration.
Greg (Fremont, CA): Little surprised to see
Myers win the award. Oscar Taveras is clearly a better hitting prospect
who struck out less than HALF the number of times Wil Myers did and was
nearly two years younger. I know there are some people at BA that have
been on the Myers ban wagon for the last few years and were not on the
Taveras wagon until recently. I think BA will look at this in a few
years and wish they went with Taveras who looks to be a hitter with no
real weakness and ridiculous upside. Please don't say Myers is more
athletic and better defensively as that is just not correct if you have
seen both of them play on a regular basis. Myers might be better
defensively right now because he has more experience but he is not more
athletic than Taveras. Can you please explain why Myers over Taveras in
some detail ?
Greg. Again, this isn't to say that
Taveras won't rank higher than Myers when we unveil our Top 100
Prospects list, that's going to be an interesting debate. But there
seems to be some confusion. This is an award that largely looks back at
the past year, not ahead to what we think the player will be 10 years
from now. When you're picking the Player of the Year, the fact that
Myers hit significantly more home runs at a level higher (while being
admittedly a year and a half older) while putting up similar batting
average and on-base numbers to Taveras (with a higher slugging
percentage) is what helps lead to the decision. It's not anything about
which one is a better prospect. If we're picking the best prospect, we
likely would have gone with Profar as POY, but again, this isn't the top
Alex (Tempe, AZ): Did Jose Fernandez get any serious consideration?
Yes. The pitchers really weren't that close this year, but if we had picked a pitcher, Fernandez was on the very short list.
Aaron (Duncanville): How much consideration did Profar get? And who do you like better long term Wil Myers or Jurickson Porafr?
On the podcast Matt Eddy and I both said
we think Profar will have a better big league career. Nothing against
Myers, but Profar is an insane prospect with the defensive ability and
offensive potential he shows already as a teenager.
Keith (Manchester, CT): Thanks JJ. I'm not
confident that the Royals will call Myers up this September, but I'm
really hoping he gets the starting RF job next April. Is my hope in
The story we ran announcing the Player of
the Year award spells out that it looks unlikely he'll be a Sept.
callup, but yes, I think at worst he'll be the Royals' starting RF next
May or June (maybe they hold him back for arbitration reasons, not that
any team would ever admit that publicly).
Sean (Conyers, GA): Was anyone in the
discussion for MiLB POY that at the start of the season you couldn't
have imagined being in the equation for the award?
Dan Straily. If we had listed 1,000
candidates for the award at the start of the year, he wouldn't have been
included. By the time we made the decision, the A's pitcher was one of
@Jaypers413 (IL): Following up on my first
question in this chat, approximately what percentage of performance
versus ceiling goes into consideration for this award?
Rough guesstimate is 75 percent
performance, 25 percent prospect status. Darin Ruf has an amazing year,
but he wasn't going to win this award because of his age/prospect
status. The same story could be said about John Lindsey a few years ago.
The better way I could explain it is you have to be a pretty elite
prospect to be considered, but once you've passed that cut, then it
largely comes down to performance in the context of the leagues they
played in. A 22-year-old in the Midwest League is held to a higher
standard than a 19-year-old in Double-A. I think if you polled everyone
in the office involved in the decision, everyone of them would probably
say that Profar is a better prospect than Myers. But it's a lot harder
to say that Profar's year was better than Myers' year (although
considering his defensive value and his age, you can make that
Jadam (18th Floor): Two major power prospects
with a lot of questions with good results so far..but if you had to
choose one, who would you rather have? Joey Gallo or Dan Vogelbach?
Gallo. More athleticism (although he also could end up at 1B like Vogelbach) with just as much hitting ability and power.
Josh (Texas): What consideration was given to
Jedd Gyorko? I am aware that he is not considered a top prospect, but
does a player have to be a top 20 caliber prospect to even win?
Gyorko could win it I think, but he would
have to have a significantly louder year than the one he had. He was
three years older than Myers in the same league, played in the more
offensive portion of the league (with more trips to Reno, Las Vegas and
Colorado Springs) and didn't match Myers' numbers.
Miguel Sano (Minnesota): As of right now, am I in your top 5 candidates to win MiLB POY next year?
I'd say Sano is a definite candidate.
Other guys to watch would include Jose Fernandez (may make it to the big
leagues too soon to really contend for this next year), Jurickson
Profar (if the Rangers don't swing a trade that gets him to the big
leagues), Francisco Lindor is a nice sleeper candidate to me.
mick (cali): Do you see Myers eventually becoming more Jay Bruce or more Ryan Braun? I've heard comps for both.
Jay Bruce seems like a pretty decent comp to me.
Jake (Baltimore): Was Bundy in the running? Do you think he starts next season in the majors?
In the running, but hard to see how we
could have picked him ahead of Jose Fernandez. Fernandez's numbers were
very similar, but he also threw an additional 30 innings more than
Bundy. Not Bundy's fault, but when picking a POY, that does matter.
Jim (Frederick. MD): We all know that the
Royals desperately need starting pitching at the major league level, yet
their Minor League Player of the Year is a power hitting outfield/third
baseman. Do a GM ever think about trading a talent like Myers for
pitching, or is too risky to trade a middle-of-the-order position player
with Myers' ceiling for pitching?
If you're the Royals, I think you'd have
to consider it if the right offer came along. If the Royals' current
lineup remained the same (without Myers) and they just added a cheap
free agent in right field to get Francoeur out of the lineup, but they
also added a No. 1/No. 2 starter, that would probably help them more
over the next couple of years than Wil Myers will, right? But how often
do teams shop No. 1 or No. 2 starters?
marty (iowa): Thanks For The Chat.How close was
oscar taveras in winning this award.He seems to be the best of both
worlds.Barely 20 yrs.old a power hitter who hits for AVG And unlike wil
myers doesn`t strikeout very often all while jumping 2 levels to do
so.Impressive to say the least.THANKS,Marty.
One last point on the Taveras-Myers
debate. The less strikeouts are impressive, but they are impressive from
a prospect status standpoint. They really don't carry a whole lot of
weight as far as which player had a better year. Unless someone has seen
some study that indicates differently that I've missed, I've seen
multiple studies that say that strikeouts don't really make a huge
impact as far as runs created. They do mean something for projecting a
minor leaguer's future potential.
Paul (DC): JJ, did you draw the short straw in
the Baseball America bullpen to "win" the right to answer angry
questions about how wrong this year's selection is?
Or did you volunteer for this beat down pleasure?
Don't mind the duty at all. Glad people care passionately about our award.
Don't mind the duty at all. Glad people care passionately about our award.
Ben (Leland Grove): Taylor Guerrieri had an amazing first season. Do you believe he's ready for full season ball next year?
Yes. He probably was ready this year, but
the Rays love to take it slow with their pitchers. Seeing the success
rate they have with pitching prospects, it's hard to say they should
change things up.
daniel (miami): I know Christian Yelich was
injured on and off in the beginning of the year, but if he was healthy
the whole year, where would he have placed in the voting?
Give him 30 more games and he would have been in the discussion. I don't think he would have made the final three however.
Jack (MA): Oswaldo Arcia has put up monster
numbers with solid strikeout and walk rates, yet has gotten very little
press. How high is his ceiling?
Got to differ on the very little press
comment, he's been making BA rankings since 2009, and he's been a Twins
Top 10 prospect twice already (and will make it a third time this
offseason). His ceiling is as a corner OF who can hit for average and
power, which is quite valuable.
Thanks everyone for the questions. I've
got to keep making my Florida State League top prospect calls. Jim
Callis will stop by tomorrow for his regular Wednesday chat.