Prospects/Draft Chat With Jim Callis

Jim Callis: Hi, everyone. Glad to be chatting with you on this Wednesday–it’s a pleasant diversion from writing a seemingly endless string of Midwest scouting reports. We’ll post Draft Prospects 101-250 on Friday, with detailed reports on each player.

PJD (Bahamas): The Rangers' farm system is loaded with high risk/high reward position players (especially at Hickory). Which of these players, in your opinion, stands the best chance of realizing his potential?

Jim Callis: That Hickory team might have more ceiling than any club in the minor leagues. The player on that team with the best chance to reach his ceiling is Jorge Alfaro. He makes more contact than some of the free swingers on that club, and he also has more positional value as a catcher.

Ben (Leland Grove): What are the odds either Houston or Chicago takes Bryant as their first pick?

Jim Callis: I do think Kris Bryant is the top hitter in the draft, but I still think the Astros are going to take Mark Appel or Jonathan Gray, and the Cubs will take whomever is left. Advanced pitching is just too valuable to pass up. If I have to put odds on it, I’ll say 1 in 10 that Bryant goes first or second. A lot can change in the next three weeks, though, especially as teams start pinning down signability.

Kyle (Dallas, TX): Loved your first Mock. What's the schedule for your next three?

Jim Callis: Thanks, Kyle. The rough schedule is May 23 (Thursday), May 30 (Thursday), June 3 (Monday), morning of June 6 (Thursday, the day the draft starts).

Jake (From State Farm): Last year, Dan Straily was the pitcher who seemingly came out of nowhere to pitch a great season. Who would you assign that honor to so far this year?

Jim Callis: Hmmm. Maybe another Athletics farmhand, Drew Granier? He’s 4-2, 2.60 with a .213 opponent average and 55 strikeouts in 45 innings in the hitter-friendly Cal League. I don’t expect him to finish the year in Oakland’s rotation like Straily did, though.

Andrew (NJ): Would you trade Carlos Correa, Rio Ruiz, and Lance McCullers for Byron Buxton (which is essentially what Houston did last year)? How about for Mark Appel?

Jim Callis: Realistically, Correa and Buxton are close enough in value that I’d take the package that also gives me McCullers and Ruiz. But my gut tells me I’d want Buxton. Would take Correa and Co. over Appel.

@Jaypers413 (IL): If BA's top 100 came out today, could Byron Buxton and Archie Bradley crack your top 5?

Jim Callis: In a word, yes.

Terry (Pleasanton, CA): What happened to Karsten Whitson? Where do you project him being drafted?

Jim Callis: After the Padres took him at No. 9 overall three years ago, Whitson never got untracked at Florida and missed his junior season after having surgery to fix an impingment in his shoulder. I have no idea where he’ll get drafted. Can’t imagine he’d want to sign coming off a year when he didn’t pitch (and two where he didn’t have much success). If he’s willing to sign, it will be for about 3 percent of what he turned down coming out of high school.

Mike (Virginia): If the draft were today: Manaea, Shipley or Stanek?

Jim Callis: I would take Shipley. Most athletic of that group, deepest repertoire of that group, most consistent season of that group. If you could guarantee that Manaea would turn back into the guys we saw in the Cape Cod League last summer, I’d take Manaea.

T HAM (Napa, CA): LIGHTNING ROUND! Puig vs. Soler?

Jim Callis: Not going to the lightning round yet, but do like this question. I’ll take Soler. It’s close, but I like Soler’s chances to hit and fully tap into his power a little more than I like Puig’s.

Adam S (Idaho): Could Jordan Paroubeck get enough helium for a team to take him in the bottom of the first round

Jim Callis: Sure. The bottom third of the first round is wide open, and we have Paroubeck rated as a second-rounder. He’s a potential five-tool outfielder, and I’m sure at least a couple of teams like him in the first round.

Mike (Orlando): Love the 1B article posted by JJ Cooper, with all that being said where do you see 6'0" HS 1B Dom Smith landing in the draft?

Jim Callis: Somewhere in the middle of the first round. He’s one of the best all-around hitters in the draft.

Mike M (NY): HI Jim! I have two questions, so I will ask them both here. How long do you expect Jean Segura will continue to look like the greatest shortstop to ever wear cleats? Secondly, how much longer do you think the D-backs will wait before giving Archie Bradley a shot in the majors? Thanks.

Jim Callis: Segura is playing over his head, but he has the ability to be a consistent all-star. The Diamondbacks do have a lot of pitching options, though it will be hard to ignore Bradley if they keep contending and he keeps pitching like this. We could see him in Arizona during the second half.

Whitney R. Parker (Vancouver, WA): Now that their sample sizes are larger, would you prefer to have Zimmer or Gausman? Are the still that similar?

Jim Callis: Not sure the sample sizes are significant yet, so I’ll stick with my original choice. I’d take Gausman, because he has made strides with his breaking ball and has a longer track record of health and success. But the difference is still pretty negligible.

Brian (Denver): In the Prospect Handbook it mentioned that a Pirates executive thought Tyler Glasnow could be the Pirates #1 prospect by the end of 2013. Assuming Cole graduates to the bigs, could Glasnow really challenge for the top spot?

Jim Callis: I forgot all about that line. That’s a bold statement, and Glasnow is making that executive look smart, but I don’t see him ranking ahead of Jameson Taillon, Gregory Polanco or Josh Bell.

PowerWheels (Crenshaw, MN): How would you rank these teammate tandems for most potential in 5 years: Sano/Buxton, Machado/Bundy, Profar/Olt, Taveraz/Miller, Zunino/Walker & Goldschmidt/Skaggs.

Jim Callis: That’s a perfect question to dive into in more length in our weekly Ask BA column. Please send that to, include your name and hometown, and I promise to answer it on Monday.

Mike (Des Moines): Jim - long time follower. Any good prospects coming out of the great state of Iowa?

Jim Callis: It’s not Iowa’s strongest year. Washington HS LHP A.J. Puk could go in the third round on talent, but I think he’s going to wind up in college at Florida. Ditto for the state’s No. 2 prospect, Muscatine HS RHP Derek Burkamper, who likely will wind up at Nebraska.

Jack (Staten Island): Who are the Mets looking at with the 11th choice in this years amateur draft? Hunter Renfroe (college)? Mcguire (HS)? Any rumors or insight Jim?

Jim Callis: I discussed college bats for the Mets in last week’s first-round projection, but am beginning to hear they’d love for one of the better college arms (Gray, Appel, Shipley, Stanek, Manaea) to get to them. Not sure that will happen, though.

John (Louisville): Jim, where do you see Ty Young from Louisville in the draft?

Jim Callis: He can really hit and projects to move from third base for the Cardinals to second base as a pro. I think he goes in the fourth round.

Bill (Raleigh): Jim, love your comments on the MLB Draft every year, what is the consensus on lefty Moll from Memphis and righty Kubitza from Rice in this years draft? I think both will be ML pitchers.

Jim Callis: We actually have them ranked back-to-back in the fourth-round section of our 101-250 list, which we’ll post on Friday. Moll has a plus fastball and curveball, but he’s a sub-6-footer and likely headed for the bullpen. Kubitza is an enigma, in that he’s racking up a ton of strikeouts with his slider but pitching in the upper-80s with his fastball.

Johan Lewis (Georgia): Any chance the Red Sox take Austin Meadows? He seems to be one of the most polarizing prospects in the top 10.

Jim Callis: Meadows may have the best all-around package of tools among high schoolers in this draft, though he hasn’t quite had the monster senior season scouts expected. Wouldn’t necessarily call him polarizing, but he could slip past the top 10 picks as clubs look for more advanced prospects (especially pitchers) at the top. I don’t see the Red Sox taking him–think they’ll have better options, including crosstown rival Clint Frazier.

Cory (Saint Paul, MN): Any chance one of Appel/Gray/Bryant fall to the Twins at #4? And is it automatic they take one of the 3 if they are available? If they are all gone, who is the #4 prospect available?

Jim Callis: There’s a chance, especially because I could see the Rockies going for a pitcher at No. 3. And because the Twins want pitching, I don’t think it’s a lock that they’d take Bryant at No. 4. I don’t see any way Appel or Gray get to Minnesota. If all three of those are gone, Clint Frazier is our highest-rated prospect and Kohl Stewart is our highest-rated pitcher.

Rich (NJ): Can you please discuss Sam Selman and how much concern should there be for for his wildness & his future outlook. Thanks

Jim Callis: Selman has never thrown consistent strikes, so I’d be concerned. I bet he winds up in the bullpen, where he could be a weapon as a lefty with a mid-90s fastball.

Bobby (Cape Cod): What kind of power grade would you give Clint Frazier? Thanks

Jim Callis: Future 70.

Bobby (Cape Cod): How would you rank Zimmer, Gausman, Appel, and Gray?

Jim Callis: Gray, Appel, Gausman, Zimmer. And yes, I believe I’ve started the lightning round.

Brian (Houston): A lot of talk around here that Bryant will be the pick over one of the big arms. The idea of Correa, Bryant, Singleton, and Springer is exciting, but would that be a mistake?

Jim Callis: I wouldn’t call it a mistake. But as hard as it is to find frontline starting pitching, I wouldn’t pass on Appel and Gray.

Mitch (Connecticut): Can you give me a draft estimate on these guys: Hunter Dozier, Mitch Garver, and Chad Green?

Jim Callis: Dozier in the top two rounds, Garver and Green in the fifth-eighth round range.

Mick (Chicago): Hardest throwing shortstop, Andrelton Simmons, Shawon Dunston, Jason Dallaero, other?

Jim Callis: Dunston remains the standard by which others are judged.

George (Boston, MA): Why has Jeremy Martinez's draft stock been slipping? Last year he looked like one of the top High School talents in the 2013 Draft.

Jim Callis: Solid defender but hasn’t improved this spring, not showing much power.

George (San Marcos): What are the chances the Padres take Clarkin with their first pick?

Jim Callis: Definitely a possiblity, I’ve heard him mentioned at No. 13. Don’t think the hometown prospect angle is a factor, but he’s talented enough to warrant going in the teens.

Blake (Kentucky): What are your thoughts on Corey Littrell, LHP out of Kentucky. Potential top 10 round pick?

Jim Callis: Yes. Lefty with solid command of a four-pitch repertoire when he’s on. I think he goes in rounds three through five.

Larry (Chicago): Luke Farrell has had a great season in the Big 10. Any word on him?

Jim Callis: He has had a nice year, could see him in rounds six through 10 as a college senior discount pick.

Miguel Sano (Fort Myers, FL): Do I really have a chance to play 3B at the major league level, or am I destined for 1B or the OF?

Jim Callis: Destined to move, but with your power it won’t matter.

Roger V. (New Jersey): Hey Jim, thanks for taking my question. What are your thoughts on Max Fried? He has started off extremely well with another 6 shutout innings today. at only 19 and with his size and room for growth, I can see him advancing quickly within the next couple of years. In your opinion, Is his ceiling as an ace one day? Thanks

Jim Callis: Yes, ace ceiling. I think he’ll be regarded as baseball’s best lefthanded pitching prospect at the end of this season.

denis (illinois): Could Trey Ball last to the Reds late in the first round?

Jim Callis: Don’t see it. Much more likely he goes in top 10 than bottom 10.

Nick (North Carolina): Do you see the Astros taking a high school player due to the fact they are no where near contention. I see each week it will be college pitcher, but what is the point if they are ready in two years, then the Astros have nothing to help the young pitcher out?

Jim Callis: I don’t think ETA is a factor at all for the Astros in making their pick.

Craig (Charlotte): Who's your favorite relief pitcher in this year's class and when do you see them coming off the board?

Jim Callis: Texas RHP Corey Knebel, second round.

Brendan (Massachusetts): What are the chances Kris Bryant is available at number 7 for the Red Sox? If he was there, would they take him?

Jim Callis: Zero, and yes.

Rocco (Leaky, TX): Is there a chance Houston surprises everyone and goes with RHP,Kohl Stewart #1 overall for like $5mill or C,Reese McGuire for $4mill. To save money for other draft picks.

Jim Callis: Don’t believe either Stewart or McGuire is in Houston’s mix for the No. 1 choice.

Josh Meyer (Fort Dodge, IA): How tough of a sign would Kohl Stewart be for the Twins?

Jim Callis: He’ll go high enough to sign. He may want to play QB at Texas A&M, but he won’t displace Johnny Manziel.

Andy (Lynchburg,, VA): Jim, If Carlos Rodon was "free" to be drafted this year, where would he slot in the first round?

Jim Callis: Somewhere in the top four picks with Gray, Appel and Stewart.

Mark (Missouri): Jim, what time does the MLB draft pick back up on June 7th and 8th?

Jim Callis: 1 pm ET on both the 7th (rounds 3-10) and the 8th (rounds 11-40).

DH (Pittsburgh): Can you describe what kind of player Moran is if he only reaches a decent floor and what kind of player he could be if he reaches a reasonable ceiling? Would you project him similarly to a less defensive Rendon?

Jim Callis: Decent floor would be a .270/10 HR first baseman, reasonable ceiling would be a .300/20 HR third baseman. Less defensive Rendon isn’t a bad call, but also less power too.

Casey (Texas): Is Stewart worthy of a top 5 pick or is he just the best HS arm in a weak draft?

Jim Callis: Both.

Mike (DC): Midwest question! David Garner from Michigan State. Thoughts?

Jim Callis: Strong-armed RHP but small, projects more as a reliever, think he goes fifth to eighth round.

Bill (So Cal): If the season ended today .. Who is your MILB player of the year ?

Jim Callis: Miguel Sano.

Matthew (St. Paul, Minnesota): Anything new on Oscar Taveras?

Jim Callis: Still the best all-around hitting prospect in the minors.

Dan (Topsham, ME): Any chance that PIT will be able to draft Kohl Stewart AND Trey Ball?

Jim Callis: Possible but slim.

JimBeau (Left Coast): Would Cleveland take Stewart at 5 if Appel, Bryant, Frazier and Gray are all gone?

Jim Callis: I’d be surprised if the Indians took a HS RHP at No. 5, seem more comfortable with bats or college arms.

Jim Callis: That was fun, but my 101-250 Midwest reports beckon. If I didn’t get your question, feel free to submit it to (please include name & hometown) if it requires a long answer or try me on Twitter at @jimcallisBA if a short one will suffice. Thanks!