Prospect Hot Sheet Chat With Jim Shonerd

Jim Shonerd: Hey, everyone. Welcome to another Friday Hot Sheet chat. Let’s get to it.

    Will T. (Cary, N.C.): When will Manny Machado be in Frederick?

Jim Shonerd: The key question right now is when will he be back in Delmarva. It sounds like the Orioles think his knee injury isn’t too serious. Hopefully that’s the case.

    @Jaypers413 (IL): Normally, if a prospect has a terrific week at the plate but only 1 XBH, that usually precludes him from making an appearance on the Hot Sheet. Why did Hosmer get a free pass?

Jim Shonerd: That would usually be the case for guy hitting in the .300-.400 range, but hitting .545/.667/.682 as a 21-year-old in Triple-A is insane. And his extra-base hit was a home run, so that helped as well.

    Greg (New York): Hey, thanks for the chat! How long do you think the mets will let Matt Harvey dominate high A? Do you think its time for a challenge?

Jim Shonerd: The Mets aren’t known for being shy about challenging prospects, so I’d be surprised if Harvey is still in St. Lucie at midseason. The FSL clearly hasn’t been too much of a challenge.

    Eddie (St Pete): Paul Clemens has been impressive so far in Mississippi (outside of his walk rate), but he has been overshadowed by the 3 other Braves pitching prospects there. Does he have the stuff to reach The Show and what's your opinion on his future?

Jim Shonerd: Clemens does have a major league arm but has always been plagued inconsistency. If his changeup develops and, as you mention, if throws enough strikes, he could make for a mid-rotation starter. He could also make it as a reliever, a role he’s done before, if the changeup doesn’t come along.

    Ben (Leland Grove): No Joe Wieland? Yes he gave up 5 runs in his previous start, but his last one was simply masterful. Team Photo at least? Also, what does he best project as?

Jim Shonerd: If Wieland’s last start (13 strikeouts over six scoreless innings) had been his only one of the week, he’d have been way up there, but he made two starts and they both count. That doesn’t take away from his season though. Take away the five runs he gave up last Friday, and he’s only given up two runs in 25 innings. He doesn’t have overwhelming stuff, so he’s probably a mid-rotation guy at best. But he really knows how to pitch, which helps his stuff play up.

    MJ (Kenosha): How much power does Jean Segura have and har far away do you think he is from the big leagues?

Jim Shonerd: Segura isn’t that big (5-foot-10, 185) but he generates enough bat speed to hit for average power down the road. Mid-2012 is probably the earliest he could make it to Anaheim.

    John Fresno (Santa Rosa): Who would be the Giants 2nd best pitching prospect be, assuming Wheeler is #1?

Jim Shonerd: Lefty Eric Surkamp is off to a fine start at Double-A Richmond, with a 2.05 ERA and 41 strikeouts in 26 innings. He’s not overpowering, pitching mostly in the high 80s, but he has two quality secondary pitches in his curve and change.

    KyleS (Loudonville, NY): Austin Ross has been impressive since the Brewers drafted him out of LSU last year. What's his ceiling and what do you think he'll become?

Jim Shonerd: A righthander taken in the eighth round last year, Ross has excelled for low Class A Wisconsin so far. He has an average fastball and a quality slider. Whether his changeup comes along will determine if he’s a starter or reliever long term. He struggled against lefty hitters last year but has been good against them this year, so that’s encouraging.

    Jason (Anchorage, AK): Were you surpised at Hosmer beating Moustakas to the show? Do you think he'll hit right away? Where might he struggle his first time through the league? Offspeed stuff? Hard stuff inside?

Jim Shonerd: If you’d told me that at the beginning of the year, yes. But the way they were both going, it’s not too surprising Hosmer got there first. The only surprise is the Royals willingness to let Hosmer gain Super Two status. Hosmer is such a natural, I’d be surprised if he does poorly. He might not come in and dominate, but I think he’ll hold his own.

    Matt (Scranton, PA): Seriously, what more does Bryce Harper need to show to get promoted to High-A? He does not look at be getting much of a challenge in Hagerstown.

Jim Shonerd: Lots of people wanting to know when Harper gets promoted. Teams don’t tell us in advance about when guys are getting moved up, but I would guess he’ll be in Potomac no later than midseason.

    Chris (Chicago): Are the preseason rankings for Wil Myers incorrect, or is he just going through a slump?

Jim Shonerd: Myers took some time to get going last year as well. He hit just .232 in April 2010 in low A. Plus it’s not like he’s been bad—hitting .268/.323/.411 in Double-A. He’s also just getting back from a bruised knee, so I wouldn’t worry about it yet.

    Jim (LV, Kansas): Hi Jim, who has a better young rotation in 2013-2015: KC (Montgomery, Lamb, Odorizzi, Duffy, Dwyer, possibly Crow) or TB (Price, Hellickson, Moore, Torres, Davis, possibly Archer)? Also, how well do you think they will stack up with rest of the league?

Jim Shonerd: If they all reach their potential, I’d take the Royals group.

    Mike (LA): What are your thoughts on Jake Marisnick's season thus far?

Jim Shonerd: A 2009 high school pick, Marisnick is off to a .344/.434/.563 start for low Class A Lansing. That’s impressive for anyone in the offensively challenged Midwest League in his first full season, even more so for Marisnick whose bat was his biggest question mark coming out of the draft.

    M. Swan (Dallas): Jim, thank you for your time. I look forward to this chat each week, awesome venue. I have a two-fold question: I am having difficulty finding much on Michael Ynoa, SP, Oak. I was wondering is he still considered a top prospect or has his stock fallen? At one point I remember him being highly touted. where do you project him in 4 years? Thanx much! Mike Swan Lewisvilee, TX

Jim Shonerd: Michael Ynoa … gone but not forgotten. Well, I shouldn’t say gone. Ynoa was the top international amateur free agent in 2008 and the A’s signed him for a franchise record $4.25 million. He made his pro debut in the AZL last year but went down after three appearances and needed Tommy John surgery. He might be back in the fall. As for four years from now, IF he stays healthy, he has the stuff to move pretty quickly. But he turns 20 this September and has barely pitched at all since 2008.

    Paul (Burleson, TX): What kind of ceiling does Robbie Erlin have?

Jim Shonerd: He could be a mid-rotation guy. His fastball is only average, but he has two quality secondary pitches and an outstanding feel for pitching.

    Dan (Pittsburgh): Who do you think out of the Pirates pitching trio has the highest upside? Owens, Morris, or Locke?

Jim Shonerd: I’ll take Morris.

    Rich (Pittsburgh): Are Rudy Owen's struggles concerning or just a bump in the road?

Jim Shonerd: Back to back Pirates questions. Owens has followed two great starts with three clunkers. I’d call it a bump in the road right now. Owens’ fastball is a little harder now than it was when he was drafted—he can get it up to 93—but he’ll always live and die by his command.

    Mike (Philly): What has been keeping Bryce Brentz off the Hot Sheet so far this season?

Jim Shonerd: He was in the running after hitting .381 with a couple of homers this week. But for a college guy in low Class A to make the Hot Sheet, he has to do something really off the charts.

    Taylor H (Oakland, CA): A's fan here...Should I give up on Michael Taylor and Chris Carter yet?

Jim Shonerd: Both are injured right now. Taylor’s taking swings again in Arizona while Carter is shelved with a thumb injury. Let’s let them get back on the field first. But they’ve been around the block in Triple-A now, so they do need to produce this year.

    Brian (Chicago): The Tigers system is underrated, I believe. Other than Turner and Oliver, who else is looking good this spring?

Jim Shonerd: Gustavo Nunez looks like he’s getting his career back on track in high Class A, and Casey Crosby’s gotten off to a solid in Double-A after an injury riddled 2010.

    MJ (Kenosha): Who has the better upside, Segura or Franklin?

Jim Shonerd: Franklin has more power, but I’m a little more confident in Segura’s hitting ability.

    Youth_Movement (KC, MO): What are your thoughts about Collin Cowgill as a prospect? I know he's 25 in AAA, but he's off to a terrific start. What's his ceiling?

Jim Shonerd: Cowgill does have the benefit of playing in some offensive parks in the PCL, but he’s a solid prospect. He probably doesn’t have enough bat to be an everyday corner outfielder or enough speed for center, but he could be a useful fourth outfielder. His arm is his best tool.

    Michael (Raleigh): Finally, a Shawn Tolleson mention. How much longer in the Midwest League for him? Next jump AA ball on the outside looking in at a September call-up? Or am I greatly overestimating a fast track for this former blue-chip high school prospect?

Jim Shonerd: He’s a guy the Dodgers thought could move quickly as a reliever, and that looks like it could be playing out that way. I wouldn’t predict him to reach the majors this year, but getting to Double-A isn’t unrealistic, perhaps going straight from low A. His numbers are pretty ridiculous.

    Jeff (LA): I saw that Allen Webster made the hot list, would you rank him as the Dodgers top pitching prospect?

Jim Shonerd: Another Dodgers question. I wouldn’t put Webster ahead of Zach Lee or Rubby de la Rosa, but I do like him. He’s got a quality fastball and changeup, and how high his ceiling is will depend on his well his curveball develops.

    Brian (WA): Kyle Seager already has 12 doubles for the Jackson Generals after spending last year in the Cal League, any chance he makes it to the Big leagues and if so, what is his Floor/Ceiling.

Jim Shonerd: Moving up from High Desert’s offensive park to the Southern League hasn’t slowed Seager down, which is a very good sign. He hit 14 homers last year, but this piling up doubles is more in line with what you should expect from him. The question remains about where he’ll ultimately play. He’s been playing mostly second base so far, but that’s not a long term option. Wherever he ends up on defense, his bat should get him to the majors.

Jim Shonerd: That’s going to have to do it for me. Sorry I couldn’t answer more of your questions, plenty of good ones in there. We’ll see you back here next Friday for another Hot Sheet chat. Have a great weekend, everybody.