Prospects Chat With Matt Eddy

    JAYPERS (IL): Your thoughts on 18-year old Edinson Rincon raking in the NWL, and did he get any consideration?

Matthew Eddy: Rincon earns a cautious thumbs-up from
us. See: This Hot Sheet’s Helium Watch. Signed out of the Dominican in
2007, he has power, a polished approach for his age and a couple
productive seasons to his credit. He has positional questions and a ton
of development in front of him, but Rincon is, at the very least,

    Dexter Carter's Clone (Kannapolis): You have GOT to be kidding me. I had a killer outing last night and am leading the minors in K's. What gives, Mr. Eddy????

Matthew Eddy: We can dig on Dexter Carter, but we want
to see how the 22-year-old’s stuff plays against older competition. We
eagerly await his promotion to high Class A.

    Mike (New York): Was Neil Medchill considered for the hot sheet this week and what is his upside?

Matthew Eddy: He was, and he received strong
consideration. A Yankees’ 11th-rounder from Oklahoma State this year,
Medchill homered in the four games leading up to our ranking. He’s at
.349/.380/.698 on the year, so it’s more than an isolated storm. What
works against Medchill and other short-season players is that their
full-season counterparts have been grinding it out every day for three
and a half months now. And that tends to count for more when we hash
out these rankings. Plus the talent levels in the short-season leagues
is very hard to ascertain, especially with so many top picks still

    jason (Athens,Ga): i was wondering if astros
    pitcher jordan lyles is hurt? he hasnt in over a week. also do you see
    lyles and ross seaton moving up a level before the end of the season?

Matthew Eddy: Our records indicate that Lyles has not
been placed on the DL. More than likely, the Astros are simply giving
the 18-year-old a breather. With most organizations, one could expect
maybe a bump to high Class A to close the year, but because Lancaster
is the next step on the ladder, Houston may choose to keep Lyles and
Seaton where they are.

    Travis (Omak, WA): Which Mariners prospect was
    the closest to being included in this weeks prospect hot sheet? Seems
    like I have seen very few Mariners on this list this season which is
    probably due to many of their best prospects being injured this season.

Matthew Eddy: Oh yeah. Injuries have derailed the
Mariners’ brightest Hot Sheet hopefuls. Michael Saunders missed a
month; Greg Halman a couple weeks; Carlos Triunfel’s out for the
regular season; Jharmidy DeJesus was slowed by a balky shoulder and
missed out on a full-season assignment; Dennis Raben’s out for the
year; Michael Pineda is battling elbow soreness. And that’s just
players from the Top 10. Now back in the short-season Northwest League,
3B Mario Martinez was probably the M’s best chance this week. He batted
.381/.458/.429 with a double and a pair of walks in 24 trips.

    Tom (Twin Cities): In Danny Rams' short
    sampling this season, at three different levels, he's absolutely
    crushed everything in sight! He's never been in the Twins' top-30 list,
    but at 20 and some experience already at hi-A earlier this season, will
    he be moving up? Is he a legit prospect? Thanks.

Matthew Eddy: He’s a difficult joker to peg. Rams has
youth and draft pedigree on his side (2nd round, 2007), but the catcher
is in Rookie ball for the third straight year. The reason: He’s
stiff-bodied with a long swing and a predilection for swinging and
missing at offspeed stuff. Also, reports on his throwing arm
consistently register slow pop times and poor accuracy.

    Mike (Utica, NY): Have you heard anything new about Jenrry Mejia injury status? Also who would you take, Holt or Mejia?

Matthew Eddy: In a recent conversation with a Mets
official, he indicated that Mejia would return sooner rather than
later. He was noncommittal, though, when asked which pitcher was the
organization’s top pitching prospect. If only because of his physical,
6-foot4 build, I’d side with Holt. However, Mejia’s three pitches may
grade out a tick higher than Holt’s. It’s just that he may face a move
to the bullpen if he reaches the big leagues.

    Jason (New York): Regardless if Jesus Montero stays behind the plate, who is going to be the better offensive player Jesus or Carlos Santana?

Matthew Eddy: I’m inclined to say Montero, because
guys with this much power who also can hit for average are so difficult
to find. On the other hand, Santana offers a switch-hitting bat and a
good deal more athleticism. My vote: Montero.

    Matt Hahn (Rhode Island): Worries about Logan
    Forsythe being another Antonelli/Daric Barton/Sean Burroughs? How often
    do elite on base skills transfer from the minors to majors when they
    are accompanied by so little power?

Matthew Eddy: Sure, it’s a concern. Forsythe appears
to have a better feel for hitting than Antonelli and significantly more
athleticism than Barton or Burroughs. I know those are just examples,
and I don’t mean to sidestep the question. Essentially, Forsythe
projects to be, at worst, a good enough hitter to man third base for a
second-division club or to fill in around the diamond (second base,
outfield, too) for a good one.

    Stu Martin (Virginia): What was the logic of having Kyle Drabek over Mat Latos (and it is "Mat", right, not "Matt"?) in your recent top 25?

Matthew Eddy: We were split down the middle on this
very question. I favored Latos because he has a similar repertoire to
Drabek but never has had arm surgery. Others were scared off by
concerns about Latos’ maturity and dedication to the game. Looks like
he’s proving his critic wrong this season. We list Latos as Mat, as in
Gamel. His given name is Mathew.

    dave (houston): I know that Bud norris is a sp
    in AAA, But does he have more value as a rp than sp. if i remember
    correctly Gerry hunsicker had billy wagner starting in the minors so
    that he could develop the extra pitch and sharpen his slider. could
    this be the same scenario for norris?

Matthew Eddy: This is absolutely the reason Norris
continues to start for Round Rock, regardless of the future role the
Astros have pegged for him. In addition to sharpening his slider
against live competition, starting every five days gives Norris the
advantage of working on finer details during off-day bullpen sessions,
without facing pressure of game situations.

    Tony (Clearwater, Fl): Thanks for taking my question Matt, Eric Young Jr? Is he too old a prospect, his numbers have been great this year. Are the
    Rockies looking at him at 2b long term?

Matthew Eddy: At 24, E.Y. Jr. has not been counted out
as a prospect. But unless his bat takes another jump forward, he
probably lacks the defensive chops to hold down second base on an
everyday basis. With his outfield experience, a utility fill-in role
seems more likely. Maybe along the lines of Willie Harris.

    Alex (Kansas City, MO): Should I be worried about Mike Moustakas yet?

Matthew Eddy: Maybe just a touch. He’s stayed healthy
and gotten repetitions, but with a line of .258/.295/.419 in the Carolina
League, it’s safe to say more was expected out of the ’07 second
overall pick.

    Kevin (NY): Is Austin Jackson a future CF or will he be moved to a corner OF position? Could he play alongside Brett Gardner in the future?

Matthew Eddy: A lot of Jackson’s value is tied to his
being an average center fielder. Many evaluators project him to have
average power once he matures, and at 22 he’s still on the young side
for Triple-A. On the scouting scale, average power equates to 15-19
home runs. While 13 is the most Jackson has hit in a minor league
season, if he runs into a few more balls in the big leagues, he could
profile as a RF for the Yankees. So, yes, he and Gardner may one day
play side by side.