Top 100 Prospects Chat
Jim Callis, John Manuel and other BA editors will answer your Top 100 Prospect chat questions beginning at 2 p.m. ET.
Hi, everyone. Glad to be here to discuss
the Top 100. I'll go for about 45 minutes, then John Manuel will come in
after that. Fire away!
@Jaypers413 (IL): I'm a bit surprised that the
top farm system according to BA didn't have more representation on this
list, namely Meyer, Purke and Goodwin. Who came the closest, and what
are your thoughts on this?
We ranked the Nationals No. 1 before the
Gio Gonzalez trade, which would have given them two more Top 100 guys.
Meyer was very, very close, and I voted for him to make the Top 100. He
has a lot of upside, but not a long track record of success, and I think
the other editors involved (eight of us put together the list) as whole
wanted to see more. Same with Goodwin — high upside, want to see more.
Purke would have been an easy Top 100 guy if there weren't questions
about his health. This answer is getting long-winded, but I guess what
I'm trying to say is that it's a balance of upside and risk. If you want
to focus more on upside and worry less about risk, all three of those
guys could make it.
Jay (Illinois): Can you give us 10 names that just missed the top 100? Thanks!
Giants C Tommy Joseph was No. 100 until
Yoenis Cespedes signed. Others who just missed, in no particular order:
Cardinals RHP Lance Lynn, Astros SS Jonathan Villar, Rangers RHP Neil
Ramirez, Marlins OF Marcell Ozuna, Royals RHP Kelvin Herrera, Nationals
RHP Alex Meyer, Padres C Austin Hedges, Yankees RHP Jose Campos, Pirates
RHP Luis Heredia.
Mike (NY): Jim, an org ranking question - about
where would you rank the Mets' farm system? I remember reading you
wrote 10-15 but based on this list it seems like they'll be more 20-25.
I always seem to estimate high during the
season. They were No. 24 in our preliminary rankings in the Prospect
Handbook, and the A's will move ahead of them after all their trades and
the Cespedes signing.
Steve (Kansas): Was Jeurys Familia any close to making the list?
One of the eight editors voted him in their
Top 100, and two others listed him in their 101-150 range. So not
particularly close for Familia. If someone sends me a question about it
at firstname.lastname@example.org (include name and hometown), I'll run the
complete list of everyone who received votes (and how many, and how high
their highest ranking was).
Ben (Leland Grove): Between Justin Nicolino, Aaron Sanchez and Noah Syndergaard, who ranked the highest on your top 150 lists?
The Jays have the deepest system in
baseball, I think, but they only landed four players on the Top 100
because I don't think we had a real consensus on how to rank their
high-ceiling, less-advanced pitchers (the three Ben mentions) against
lower-but-solid-ceiling, more-advanced pitchers like Drew Hutchison and
Deck McGuire. All received several votes, with Nicolino and Syndergaard
getting the most support.
Jim (Philly): Only 1 Philly representative in Trevor May is disappointing. How strong of a case did Biddle and Valle make?
The system really has thinned out with
promotions and trades. Biddle and Valle are intriguing, but they're not
particularly advanced and both have a lot to address. Neither was very
close to the Top 100, though they received Top 150 votes.
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): With many 2012 predicted debuts at the top of the list, who do you think wins the two rookie of the year awards?
Yu Darvish, Zack Cozart.
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): Which 80 tool stands out more in it's own category, Harper's power or Hamilton's speed?
Great question. Both are off the charts,
really. I think if you were grading them, maybe Harper has 85 power and
Hamilton has 90 speed. I think Harper's power will make more of an
impact than Hamilton's speed, if that makes sense.
Harry (Pittsburgh): I'm surprised Josh Bell didn't crack the top 50. He seems to have all the tools to succeed. Can you tell us more about him?
He's a very good prospect, but I think his
$5 million signing bonus clouds the fact that had he been considered
signable, he would have gone in the 11-20th range of the 2011 draft. He
wasn't an elite prospect in that regard. I think he'll hit for
considerable power and average and wind up in right field.
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): With most projecting
Mesoraco with just average defense and an average arm, will he have to
move off C in the future or is he good enough to stay there if he has a
10+ year career (barring injury naturally)? Could his bat be good
enough to play 1B down the line?
I think he'll stay at catcher. If he has
average receiving and arm strength to go with a strong bat for the
position, that's an all-star catcher.
Marcus (Kentucky): How come Miguel Sano ranks
so high in comparison to players that seem very similar and are more
proven than him such as Nolan Arenado, Xander Bogaerts, or Cheslor
His power upside puts him ahead of those
guys. He has well above-average power, maybe as much as any prospect
besides Bryce Harper.
Greg (OH): If Billy Hamilton moved to CF how would his ranking change?
Not much, really. I'm not sold that he's going to stick at shortstop, but his speed is a game-changer wherever he plays.
Kelly (Toronto, ON): Only # 46 for Marisnick?
Every article I've read say he's a legit 5-tooler and I believe you
could make a case for him to occupy the same range of your top 100 as
Starling, Myers and Arenado. Explain?
He's actually No. 67, but that's lower than
I would like. I ranked him 44th on my personal list and prefer him to
fellow Jays outfield prospect Anthony Gose. As for the three guys you've
mentioned, Marisnick has great tools but Starling's are better, and
Myers and Arenado have proven themselves at higher levels. I'll digress
here, but there are no right and wrong answers on this stuff.
DJ (NYC): Xander Bogaerts - % chance he hits 35Hrs at peak. % chance he stays at SS? If not SS, move to 3rd should be seamless, no?
Considering he has only played a
half-season in low Class A, I'd be conservative on Bogaerts. 35 homers =
70-75 power on the 20-80 scouting scale, and that's stretching it. I
don't think he'll stay at shortstop, more because of his size than a
lack of athleticism, but yes, his tools profile well at third base.
Scott (Pittsburgh): I know your publication
ranked Bundy as the top arm available in last years draft and looking at
the rankings then and now you list he and Bauer ahead of Cole in the
rankings. Did the Pirates in your mind make a mistake with Cole over
those two? Also, are Cole and Taillon your top duo of arms in the
I wouldn't say a mistake—all three of
those guys were close and Cole has the most electric arm of that trio. I
would have taken them in this order—Bundy, Bauer, Cole—but you can
defend any order. I'd take Cole/Taillon, but our Top 100 would slightly
Matt (Toronto): If he was still eligible for
this list, where would you slot Brett Lawrie into the mix? Does he make
it a clear "top 4", is he part of the next group of talent in the top
10, or is he an afterthought?
He'd be No. 4 for me. I'd put him ahead of Darvish.
cy (western Mass.): Fabulous work, gentlemen.
Thank you. Always looking to the future, did Enny Romero receive
consideration for this list? Does he have the potential to be a fast
Thanks, Cy. Romero received one Top 150
vote. I don't think he's going to move quickly, but he's a nice sleeper
with a high upside. Just what the Rays need—another potential
Lloyd (Lakewood): Dylan Bundy with an ETA of 2013? Is he THAT good?
He's that good. I bet he's up before the end of 2013.
Joel (KCK): I've heard of one scout saying that
next to Matt Moore, Taijuan Walker has the highest ceiling of any
pitching prospect in the country. Is that a careless statement, or is
the upside really that high? Thanks?
Not a careless statement, you can
definitely make that argument. He's extremely athletic, has an electric
arm, and he showed more polish more quickly than expected last year.
Ty (Oakland, CA): Why don't peripheral
contributers such as Andy Baggersly, Derrick Goold, Tom Haudricourt,
Phil Rogers, Matt Forman, etc get a vote as to where their respective
team's top prospects should appear within the top 100? Just saying.
They do, in the sense that they help
compile the rankings and scouting reports for their teams. But as good
as those guys are, I think they'd tell you that they don't have the
sense of the overall prospect scene that our editorial staff does. Matt,
who worked in our offices for an extensive period of time, did
participate in the Top 150 balloting.
Jorge Soler (Chicago): Where would I have ranked if I signed last week?
In my latest column
BA subscription required), I said I'd put him at No. 43, between Nolan
Arenado and Mike Olt. Not sure if the rest of the BA staff shares that
Jason (Austin): In your comments you say Cory
Spangenberg is the best 2B prospect in the minors and that is obviously
contingent on Rendon not moving to 2B. Do you think he will be future
All-star at 2B? Maybe Pedroia with less pop?
In yesterday's Ask BA
I projected Spangenberg as a 2015 all-star. I'm not completely certain
he'll stay at 2B vs. CF, but I do think he'll hit for a high average
with gap power and plenty of speed.
Alex (Mass): Arenado so low? Seriously?
Is 42 really that low? I had him 35th on my personal list.
Trey (Boston): Out of the top 7 players drafted from the past draft, who is most likely to live up to their potential and least likely?
Most likely: Trevor Bauer or Anthony Rendon. Least likely: Bubba Starling.
russinfortworth (Fort Worth): The only thing
keeping Harper off the opening day roster is the ability to move back
free agency back a year by bringing him up in June correct?
Also, is Matt Purke close to this list?
That's a little strong ... it's not like
Harper tore up Double-A. The Nationals could delay his free agency by
waiting 2-3 weeks to promote him, and I'd be shocked it they don't delay
it. I addressed Purke earlier ... if we knew for sure he'd regain and
maintain full health, he'd make the list.
Scott (Chicago): When do you see Anthony Rizzo becoming the Cubs starting 1st baseman?
By the end of the season.
Jared (New Jersey): What is Jedd Gyorko's ceiling?
Solid regular, possible all-star, I really love the bat.
Andrew (St. Paul, MN): With Andrus signed
long-term and Kinsler there for a while, why haven't the Rangers traded
Jurikson Profrar yet? Isn't he completely blocked?
He's athletic and gifted enough to profile well almost anywhere on the diamond. No reason to trade him.
Ryan (Milwaukee): Where can we find your organization rankings? I haven't gotten my handbook yet, and I'm curious.
Only in the Handbook to this point. We'll update them and have them in our upcoming Minor League Preview.
I'm going to hop out now and turn this over
to John Manuel. Enjoy! Feel free to send questions to
email@example.com as well (including your name and hometown).
Hard 8 Starkey (Bands, Pa): Was Ryan lavarnway on the bubble?
I'll take the baton from Jim Callis here
... Lavarnway had a modest amount of support in our internal
discussions; no one had him in their top 100 but he had several top 150
supporters. The questions about his defense and how much he'll hit big
league pitching kept him out of the list, for me.
Grant (San Diego): No Hedges, Wieland or Erlin? Who will likely make it to Petco first?
All three had support; JJ and I talked
about that in last week's podcast. I think all of us in the office would
have different answers; I'm a Wieland guy. Matt Eddy strongly advises
caution on all young catchers, and that helped us keep Hedges out of the
back of the top 100. He came the closest to making it, as his upside is
considerable. But catching is hard, so we decided to be conservative
Andrew Brotherton (Atlanta, GA): We all know
about Mason, Manny, and Dellin, along with newly acquired Jose, who are
the next wave of Yankee prospects to make the Top 100 prospects? Could
you see Montgomery, Bichette, Ravel Santana, Jake Cave, Murphy, Flores,
Austin entering the list?
Glad to see a Yankee fan so giddy about
their prospects; it's so rare ... Ravel Santana and Dante Bichette Jr.
are my picks to click out of that group to jump into the Top 100 next
year, but Austin is a good sleeper. I like Mike Montgomery a lot but
he's likely a future setup guy, and there are really no setup guys (in
terms of realistic ceiling) in this top 100. That's what kept Lance
Lynn, for example, out of the top 100. Check today's podcast when it's
posted to hear some more discussion on that point.
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): With the Reds #3 prospect
Zack Cozart at #75 overall, how close were #4 Dan Corcino and #5 Robert
Stephenson to making the list?
Shockingly, I was the high guy on Corcino;
he was in my top 100, but I was the only one. Stephenson didn't get
that kind of consideration but was on three of our ballots. Obviously
the system took a hit with the Latos trade but one that I think was
worth taking in that deal.
@Jaypers413 (IL): Was Luis Heredia's timetable (4-5 years away) what kept him off the list?
I would word it that he's so far away and
we really haven't seen much of what he can do. Also the 19 walks in 30
innings ... performance doesn't mean much in Rookie ball as you know but
that's a worrisome combination. I'd like to see progress there before
ranking a 17-year-old.
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): Given that he should be a day one starter, could Zack Cozart be a darkhorse rookie of the year candidate?
Another Reds question ... Cozart is a
darkhorse favorite for me; we'll have our Top 20 rookies rankings in
this issue, should be online in two weeks. I like Cozart quite a bit,
despite a somewhat unconventional swing. He's consistently hit for solid
pop for a middle infielder. He's got a lot of 5s and 6s in his toolset.
Ben (Leland Grove): Do you believe Arenado's CAL and AFL numbers were inflated at all, and is that what led to ranking him where you did?
I think we're trying to be more aware of
Cal League numbers in general. We're always a bit circumspect on AFL
numbers. More impressive to me was his defensive improvement. We thought
he could hit last year at Asheville. See this blog post from July 2010:
Ben (Miamisburg, OH): Is Jurickson Profar the early favorite for the 2013 #1 Prospect ranking?
That's a good way to put it. I'd throw
Anthony Rendon (if he can show his shoulder is healthy), Taijuan Walker
and Miguel Sano in that mix as well.
Randy (KC): I notice Shelby Miller and Dylan
Bundy both have 2013 ETAs Which is later/earlier respectively than I
would have anticipated. I realize that's just an estimation and things
can change quickly, but do you stand by that assessment?
Those ETAs would not be the same if they
were in different organizations. The Cardinals have pretty good starting
pitching depth and have handled Miller carefully to that point; that
said, that was a conservative ETA. We hemmed and hawed on hit quite a
bit, and if we're wrong and he establishes himself in 2012, I would not
be shocked. Bundy ... he was the best pitcher in the 2011 draft, has
uncommon polish for a prep product and is in a poor organization that
likely will fast-track him. Hence they got the same ETAs, which I admit
on the surface looks odd. If anything, I'd move Miller up to 2012, but
it's likely he'll still be rookie-eligible for 2013 . . . in which case
he should be in my previous answer about 2013 Top 100 guys who could
rank No. 1.
Neal (Toronto): Hi Jim,
Quick question on your apparently implying that Aroldis Chapman isn't
living up to the hype? While you'd obviously like to see fewer walks,
seems to me that a guy who allowed less than half a hit an inning and
struck out better than 1.4 an inning at 23 years of age is well on the
way to matching the hype, even the Randy Johnson comps seem still well
I'm not Jim obviously, but the difference
is that Chapman got $30 million before ever pitching in the majors.
Meanwhile Randy Johnson got 4-5 years in the minors and took a couple of
big league seasons where he took his lumps a bit before emerging. So
both can be true ... the comp can be in reach, and Chapman has failed to
live up to his hype generated by the $30 million contract. I do believe
the way Chapman has been put in big league relief for two seasons has
hurt his long-term development, and I think that's one of Jim's larger
points as well.
Raphael (Vancouver, BC): What does Jarrod
Parker have over James Paxton? Paxton is a lefty who struck out more at
the same level, has similar stuff, and doesn't have Parker's injury
A longer performance track record. Paxton
wasn't that dominant as an amateur (5.86 ERA as a junior in 2009) and
then basically missed a year. Even with the missed year, Jarrod Parker
has performed in pro ball and came back pretty strong after his TJ.
Parker's greater pro experience also means he has a deeper repertoire;
he's a 4-pitch guy and also has both a two-seamer and four-seamer, while
Paxton's a three-pitch guy. Slight edges for Parker. But considering
how many minor leaguers there are, 26 to 52 isn't exactly a chasm in the
Brian (NY): Who do you feel moves up this list
significantly in 2013? For example, Skaggs was #82 in 2011, #13 this
year; Profar was #74 in 2011, #7 this year.
We talked about this in today's podcast as
well; two of my picks to click were 2011 draftees Daniel Norris and
Taylor Guerrieri. JJ Cooper's included Cheslor Cuthbert and Jonathan
Schoop. I'll let you listen to the podcast to hear Jim Callis'.
Matt (Scranton): Are there any real concerns
that you have heard on Mike Trout after a disappointing end to his
season and a weak showing in the AFL? Or was this just him being worn
down after a long year?
Not from me or the scouts we've talked to;
Jim had one scout's note in one of the sidebar pieces he did that
talked about Trout's hand-eye coordination being fairly ordinary, which
is the first I've heard of it. I do not have any concerns that stem from
his AFL stint though.
Navin (Pasadena, CA): I know Jim Callis said he
was being conservative but I was surprised to see Jorge Soler
hypothetically rated in the 40s. If he signed with the Cubs, I was
expecting Soler to be their top prospect and not rated about 10 spots
behind Brett Jackson. Why do Cuban defectors rarely live up to the hype,
as Jim Callis suggested?
Navin, I think we're just being realistic
there. We had a report on Soler back in Nov. 2010 and remain excited
about him. Honestly, I'm surprised Jim would rank him ahead of Javier
Baez, who sounds similar and has a chance to stick in the infield. I'd
rank Soler behind the (a) polished guy ready for the big leagues who is
going to be a steady hitter and defender if not a star and (b) the
infielder with similar offensive upside. To me, that's just realistic.
Jeremy (Washington, DC): Did Tommy Joseph get any consideration for this list? Huge power potential with the chance to stick at catcher, right?
He was No. 100 before Yoenis Cespedes
signed and got bumped off the list at that time. He was one of the
players we spent a lot of time deliberating. I think we'd love to see a
bit better plate discipline, and it's hard to have conviction about
A-ball catchers who have questions about their defense.
Chris (Hicksville, NY): Is Gary Sanchez from
the Yankee system a Jesus Montero situation all over again in terms of
can Sanchez play another position if he can't make it as catcher?
I love the podcasts by the way.
Thanks for the kind words on the podcast.
We're excited about the fact that they are going well. I think JJ Cooper
deserves a lot of credit for that; I'm proud to work with him.
As for Sanchez, I think the safest thing to say is yes, he's similar to
Montero, though he's more of a pure hitter in terms of his swing. The
makeup or maturity of Sanchez is more in question than it was for
Montero at a similar stage. But he's not as big as Montero; I wouldn't
give up on him as a catcher just yet. He can grow up; Montero couldn't
stop being 6-foot-4, 225.
Johhny (From the spot): I bet the capsules was written by John Manuel.
You bet right! We were shooting for
breezy, since we're so hard-core most of the rest of the time. Hope you
enjoyed them. I'm handing it off to JJ now ... thanks for all the
attention, enjoy the top 100!
Joel (KCK): Until Boston or the Yanks can
actually develop a prospect and have them have sustained success at the
major league level, is it that off-base for the majority of baseball
fans to feel that ALL Bos/NYY prospects are overrated by the majority of
the industry experts?
Sorry Joel, you're missing something here.
Jacoby Ellsbury and Jon Lester would seem to qualify as homegrown
talents with sustained success as do Kevin Youkilis and Jonathan
Papelbon. On the Yankees side, Robinson Cano, Brett Gardner, Ivan Nova
and others would like to differ with your assessment.
cy (western Mass.): Is this something of a make-or-break year for Martin Perez, where ability needs to be matched by results?
I wouldn't completely give up on him if he
had a bad year because pitchers can "find it" on differing timetables,
but yes, it's no longer an excuse to say he's young for the league. He
needs to miss bats.
Marcos (NY): Can Xander Bogearts play CF in the future? Can you give me a scouting report on Blake Swihart. Is he the next Buster Posey?
I wouldn't see him making it as center
fielder. Xander is more likely to move to a corner, as he's got a chance
to end up being pretty good sized. As far as the Swihart scouting
report, we've broken him down for subscribers here:
In the scouting report we said he had the Posey starter kit. Long way
to go to get there though.
Mike (Toronto): I love the top 100, look
forward to it every year BUT...I was let down by the format this year. A
grid with some details and then a joke about their name or a short
"funny" blurb? That's so Yahoo or ESPN! Why would BA trade in their
trademark serious informative approach for gags about how many Bubba's
or Shelby's there are?
Thanks for your input. We've done
different lines of skinny in different formats over the years, but the
reality is that we've already written 250-500 word scouting reports on
each and everyone of these guys this offseason. So we were just trying
to do something different for the Top 100 list. If you are a subscriber,
we have a very in-depth scouting report on each and every one of these
Anthony (NYC): Ravel Santana, how far is he from Top 100 worthy?
A good 2012 away. Just a little far away to put him on yet. Another solid season and he'll be on next year's list.
jon (sc): How close was Heath Hembree to making
your top 100. I know he is a releiver but he led minor leagues in saves
last year and has a big fastball.
His name was discussed. We analyzed a
couple of potential closers for spots at the tail end of the list. He
wasn't the closest reliever to making the list who didn't make it, that
would be Kelvin Herrera or Lance Lynn, but he was discussed.
Perry (Las Vegas, NV): How far out of the top 100 are the Blue Jays young starters (Nicolino, Sanchez, Syndergaard, Hutchison, McGuire) below Norris?
Not that far. I have said a couple of
times recently that no organization has the potential to have a bigger
2012 as far as the farm system than the Blue Jays. If most of their
young talent takes steps forward, they could have the No. 1 farm system
in baseball heading into 2013. They remind me somewhat of where the
Royals were heading into 2010. But now their prospects have to go out
and succeed at higher levels, which is the tough part.
Jason (Austin): By my quick count I counted 19
players on the list from the list from the 2011 draft. Is that number
high compared to past years, and is that a product of a really really
It was a very deep draft. It was as good of a top 10 as we can remember in years.
D.Cornell (Madison, WI): What's the deal with
Angel Villalona? Will he play in 2012? Do you see him reaching the BIG
LEAGUES? Could he make the Top 100 Prospects List in 2013?
If he can get his visa to the US he will
play in 2012. But he's lost a lot of time and was struggling before
that. I don't see him ever making a future Top 100.
D.Cornell (Madison, WI): Didn't Wilmer Flores on the list - what happened to him? Is he the NEXT Miguel Cabrera?
He's not the next Miguel Cabrera. At
Flores' age, the current Miguel Cabrera was a solid big leaguer, Flores
is looking to get out of high Class A. The bat isn't as special as we
once thought, and although he's listed as a shortstop, there's a decent
chance he ends up at first base long term.
Jake (Grand Rapids): What prohibited Eddie
Rosario from making the list? I would have thought his stock would rise
in light of his projected move to 2B.
Nothing prohibited him from making it, but
he doesn't get credit for being a second baseman until he shows that he
can handle the position. A strong 2012 and I wouldn't be shocked to see
him on the back end of next year's list.
D.Cornell (Madison, WI): Were Juan Duran or Yorman Rodriguez - both Reds Propects - close to making the Top 100 Prospects List?
No. In Duran's case he's got a lot of
swing and miss. As good as his power can be, he doesn't really have
another potentially plus tool. He's a liability in the outfield
defensively, doesn't run all that well and doesn't project to hit for
average. He could fix some of those problems, but those are too many
concerns to come close to making the Top 100 currently. As far as Yorman
Rodriguez, he has the tools to be a Top 100 player, but his defense
right now is quite bad, and he's missed a lot of time with both injuries
and makeup problems. He needs to mature and string together a strong
full season, not flashes over a month or two, to make a case for a Top
B. (Dublin): What's the top 100 of the BA staff look like!?
I don't feel qualified to rank that, but I'd be happy if I crack the Top 50 (we're not that big of a staff).
Dale (Wisco): Why is Jungmann ranked so low
with his outstanding stats and quality pithcing at Texas. Seems like
should be higher, potential ace or number 2/3?
Where is Wily Peralta just outside top 100?
We actually felt that Jungmann ranked
pretty aggressively, there was some feeling in our Top 100 meeting that
he might have been a little high. The way he tailed off at the end of
his junior year did lead to some concerns.
Taking a quick siesta to watch Jim on MLB Network TV, will be right back.
My mistake, he's taping at 4 p.m. not going on live. I'm back.
Bob (KC): Cuthbert seems to be getting pretty
big (hype wise) but the numbers seem lacking. 3B demands a pretty good
hit and power tool right? What can he do in the future?
Cuthbert is a great example of how you
have to go deeper than a cursory look at the numbers. He was dominant in
May-July and then simply ran out of gas in his first full pro season
(he was one of the youngest players in the league). The bat speed that
was apparent in June was gone by August. Long-term he's a potential
impact bat and I believe he can stick at third base.
Ken (Lakewood CA): Pastornicky looks to be the
starting SS for the Braves, yet didn't make the Top 100. Was he at all
close? What are his limitations as a prospect and is he merely keeping
the SS seat warm for Simmons. Thanks.
There are differing opinions among scouts
as to whether he's a solid everyday shortstop or a very good utilityman.
Pastornicky's ceiling is significantly lower than Simmons, but he is a
quite safe bet to be a useful big leaguer. He likely has a couple of
months to prove he can do the job, but in a tough NL East, he'll have to
produce pretty quickly.
Jim (Granger, IN): You're starting a franchise.
First pitcher selected....Shelby Miller or Stephen Strasburg? Strasburg
has proven himself in The Show but is also coming off TJ. Thoughts on
I'm taking Matt Moore.
Jeff (Baltimore): Do you see Jon Schoop at 3B or 2B long term?
I'd say 2B, but I've talked to scouts who disagree and think he should be an third baseman, where they see all-star potential.
Johnny (San Diego): What was your biggest hesitation in ranking Daniel Corcino? Size? Lack of upside?
There are differing opinions on his
long-term role. If you like him, he's a Johnny Cueto clone who could be a
solid No. 3 starter. If you don't, his size and effort in his delivery
Dan (Maine): How far off was Eddie Rosario?
Seems like he has been talked a lot about this year and he ranked #3 on
Twins list (whereas Charles Villanueva only ranked #9 on TEX).
I'll put in a plug for the Prospect
Handbook (which can be purchased here
our BA Grades in the handbook, Villanueva is a 60 High while Rosario is a
55 High. So we ranked Villanueva higher than Rosario, he's just in a
much more talented farm system. That's one of the reasons we added the
BA Grades this year as is makes it easy to figure out how prospects rank
Sam (New York): How much consideration did
Grant Green get for the top 100? What does he have to do in AAA this
year to earn his way back on the list? Thanks.
Personally I need to see a good bit more
power. I don't see him as an impact player in the big leagues,
especially after his move to center field. The only time Green has
reached double digits in home runs in college or the pros is during a
year in the Cal League. He can be a useful player, but he seems more
like a second-division regular to me. Jim Callis would disagree, as he
views Green more highly than I do.
Peter Kennedy (San Diego): The most under
represented position is 2B. Coincidently, 2B is also under represented
in the Hall of Fame. Any thoughts on why 2B does not have more superior
Because the best second baseman in the
majors are playing other positions. Second base is a position you
usually end up at because of your limitations. If you're a great middle
infielder, you play shortstop. If you're a touch too slow for shortstop
but with good arm and power, you play third base. Most second basemen
end up there because they either lack the arm or the power to play at
short or third. Because of that, many future MLB second basemen are
playing SS in the minors.
Scott (FL): Hi! Where would Kyle Gibson rank if he was healthy this year? He appeared to be a Top 20 candidate before his 2011 season.
Top 20 seems a little steep to me. We had
him No. 34 before the 2011 season. If he bounces back he could end up
back in the 50-100 range in 2014, but considering his age, and the fact
he won't be back to full strength until 2013, when he will be 25 years
old, I wouldn't see him cracking another top 50.
Sam (New York): If all three are in the
rotation on opening day, who would you expect to have the best 2012
season among Brad Peacock, Jarrod Parker, and Tom Milone?
Peacock, Parker and ............................ Milone. Big difference between those top two and that third one.
Dave (San Francisco): Is there a pitcher in
this group that will be the next Henderson Alvarez or Michael Pineda
that will increase his velocity to the upper 90s and succeed above
Dave, I'd love to answer that question but
if I could figure that out, some club would be paying me big bucks. Not
trying to be flippant, but predicting which pitcher is going to gain
4-5 mph like Alvarez did is quite hard to do.
D.Cornell (Madison, WI): Domingo Santana (Astros Prospect) - Boom or Bust?
Yes. He's going to be a boom or bust. Hard
to say for sure which one yet. He's like trying for a three-team
teaser. You're unlikely to pull it off, but if you do, the payoff is
Ryan (WA): Will there be "BA Grades" released for these players as has been done in the past?
We put BA Grades on each and everyone of our 900 prospects in this year's Prospect Handbook.
Jason (Boston): What has Vizcaino so low? Is it
the injury questions, the bullpen role, or are you just not as high on
him as some others in the industry? Thanks.
I think where we have him ranked is right
around the industry consensus. Obviously people have differing opinions,
but if you polled a sample of 10 pro scouting directors, I think where
we have Vizcaino is pretty close to where they would have him. He's most
likely a reliever, a very good one, but a reliever nonetheless. And
he's had injury problems most every year—last year was the first time
he topped 100 IP in a season—he's been a pro for four years.
Bob (DC): I am in a strat league that allows us
to draft minor league players. I hate to give up on a player too soon
but guys near the bottom of the top 100 are readily available. Is it
time to give up on Chris Carter and Anthony Ranaudo and bring in a
couple of guys near the bottom of the list?
Yes on Chris Carter. As far as Ranaudo, if
you hope for him to be a back-end of the rotation starter, he still
could be that with a glimmer of a chance to be more. But if you're
asking me if I'd rather have Ranaudo or Daniel Norris or Taylor
Guerrieri, I'd rather have the younger guys if I'm talking about
Shawn (Dallas): Go out on a limb and project Moore's first season. Do you think he has a better season than Price off the bat?
Yes because he's more polished. Price was a
two-pitch guy a lot (and sometimes a one-pitch guy) in his first
season. Moore is a three-pitch guy already.
Amy (Boston): How concerning is Mike Montgomery's 2011 struggle?
Definitely a concern, but the stuff is
still there and he was a 21-year-old who turned 22 while pitching in the
PCL. He has plenty of time to add the final refinements.
neil (new zealand): where's the love for james paxton?? was he close to the top 100?
He made it. He was No. 52.
Ryan Winkel (Rogers, AR): Where would a player
such as Mark Appel or Lucas Giolito rank? How many from this 2012 draft
could we expect to see make the top 100 list?
Check out Jim Callis' column we posted
today for that answer:
Jaypers (Il): Gary Sanchez: #30 last year, #82
this year. Did his stock really fall that much, or is this an
acknowledgement that you guys might have jumped the gun with him last
His stock fell. He hasn't made the strides defensively that were expected of him and his makeup was a concern this year.
Gus (Durham): Rendon and injuries. Is Rendon's
current ranking partly a product of uncertainty over his shoulder?
Would he have ranked higher had he played in the AFL and shown a healthy
shoulder? If he never shows better than the player he was his final
year of college, do you still stand by his current rank?
Absolutely he would have ranked higher if
he had played in the AFL and showed he was healthy. I was one of the
lightest in the office on Rendon and it is almost entirely because he
hasn't yet demonstrated that the shoulder injury is behind him.
Ian (Columbus): How much of a concern is Julio Teheran's lack of a breaking ball?
It's a definite concern, one we've written
about multiple times. But Teheran has made strides with it and he's
shown durability and success for multiple years despite his young age. I
expect he'll refine it to the point where it's not a hinderance for
him. His changeup is good enough that he just needs it as a useable
Hard 6 Starkey (Uncasville, CT): Derek Norris:
JUST outside top 100? I mean, his babip last year was what, .250? Good
defense, good walk rate...has to be close to the top 100, no
We are talking about a guy who hit .235 in
2010 before hitting .210 in 2011, so either his BABIP is a case of
extreme bad luck or there is something that makes one think he's not
going to hit for a whole lot of average while putting up solid OBPs.
He's a solid prospect, but no, I didn't personally have him just on the
cusp of the Top 100. More like 130-150 for me.
Gus (Durham): I assume you do not take ballpark
factors into account when considering prospects. Realistically, in a
park like Safeco that favors lefty pitchers, might Hultzen have more
value for the Mariners than he would as a prospect in isolation?
We don't really, partly because we can't
be sure a guy won't be traded. Robbie Erlin's ERA's likely will look
better now that he's been traded to the Padres, but as far as what his
value is compared to other prospects, he's still the same guy. That's
how we try to treat it.
Daniel (Montana): Thanks for the work guys.
Regarding Bundy, does Baltimore's inability to develop pitchers through
the Major Leagues worry you? Or is he just too good to be messed up?
No one is too good to be messed up, and
the Orioles' track record with pitching prospects is troubling. But
Bundy's talent is immense, and not every O's pitching prospect flames
out, so you have to like his chances.
Aaron (Dallas): Why was Martin Perez so low? Some scouts say he is a top 20 prospect with ace stuff.
Not trying to be flippant, but which
scouts told you that? I was hearing that back in mid-2010, but Perez's
recent struggles in 2010 and 2011 have left a lot of scouts wanting to
see a little more success from Perez and better command, no matter how
good his stuff is.
Ted (Twin Cities): What happened to Eddie Rosario? I thought he was a lock for top 100????
Getting a lot of Rosario questions. If you
have our Prospect Handbook and break out the BA Grades, it would give
you a pretty strong hint we didn't see him currently as a top 100 guy.
He's a 55 High, while a number of 55 Medium's didn't make the Top 100.
Jason (Salem, OR): Have the results (or lack
thereof) finally outweighed the projection/upside of the many tools of
Aaron Hicks? A previous Top 100 guy, I'm not surprised to see him miss
the list this year. Thoughts?
At some point you have to start seeing
things click. The tools are still quite impressive, but he's yet to put
it together and at this point, he's got a pretty long track record of
Greg (Boston): Mike from Toronto is in the
minority (I think). After breaking down 900+ prospects, we really don't
need to read more than one or two lines about these guys when it comes
down to the final ranking. Keep up the great work, all of you.
Thanks for the kind words.
MC (Boston): Did Oswaldo Arcia get much consideration for the list?
Not much. I'd expect we would have seen
Rosario and Hicks both from the Twins on the list before Arcia. A
healthy 2012 would give him a chance to move up, but the elbow injury
really set him back last year.
jda (New York): How much of Zack Cozart's value is tied up in his above-average defense.
Not a whole lot. I'd say he's a solid big
league shortstop defensively. Where he stands out is he has more power
than the average big league shortstop.
Justin (San Diego): Not too many strictly
bullpen arms get ranked on these lists. Can you give us a few of the
top bullpen arms that were not ranked in the top 100?
Sure. Kelvin Herrera, Heath Hembree and Lance Lynn all didn't miss the list by much.
Jose (Dallas): Why Yu Darvish over Julio Teheran?
He is older, but Darvish's overall stuff
is better. His breaking ball is better and his command is better. I'd be
happy to have either one, but those were the differntiators.
CJ (Boston): Where was Robbie Grossman? Concerns that his numbers were a product of repeating a level?
That's part of it. There also is a
question of whether he's a tweener. Grossman did have a breakout year
last year, but it's hard to see how he profiles. He lacks the plus power
like you would want out of a corner outfielder and he's limited
defensively in center field. It was a great 2011, but he still looks
more likely to end up as a useful fourth outfielder than as a big league
After nearly three hours we need to wrap
this up. Thanks for all the questions and thanks for all the interest.
Top 100 day is always one of the busiest days of the year traffic wise
here at BA and we appreciate everyone of you for stopping by.