Kyle Glaser Chat (10/7/21)
Kyle Glaser: Hey everyone, hope you're having a good week so far and have enjoyed the first few games of the postseason. It's been a fun start with the Wild Card Games. Let's chat.
- Although monoah has already had success at the ML level, I keep hearing gabriel Moreno is a cant miss prospect and will play in multiple a allstar games. Who do you think will have the better ML career/impact.
Kyle Glaser: I think it'll be very similar. Manoah as a top half of the rotation starter and Moreno as an everyday catcher who contends for All-Star selections. Both project to be big parts of the Blue Jays future moving forward. I would caution to say, however, there is no such thing as a can't-miss prospect, especially when we're talking about catchers. Moreno does everything you want from a catcher his age and is very advanced, and clearly we believe he can be a star as reflected by where he is in the Top 100. I just wouldn't label him, or anyone else, as "can't miss." Things happen, especially with how demanding the catching position is.
- Who do you see having the better career...campusano or langeliers?
Kyle Glaser: Campusano. He's higher in the Top 100. That's literally what the Top 100 is - the higher ranked guy is who projects to the better major leaguer. It's pretty straightforward.
Karl of Delaware (Georgetown, Delaware):
- Yesterday the Dodgers added three outfielders (McKinney, Raley, Souza) and infielder McKinstry to their roster. What's the strategy behind this, and are other playoff teams doing these mass roster shifts, too?
Kyle Glaser: Keep in mind for wild card games it's not unusual for teams to take down the number of pitchers they're carrying and add a few more bench bats. You're not going to need as many pitchers to get through one game. You're more likely to need the position players off the bench if the right matchup presents itself or for defensive replacement purposes. We'll see the rosters get a little more balanced once the Division Series starts. For a one game setup, having as many bench bats as possible for every scenario is more beneficial than carrying a 12th pitcher.
Roger (Greenville, SC):
- What went into the decision to cut from league top 20s to league top 10s? Who were some notable misses who would've made the lists under the old format?
Kyle Glaser: Ultimately that call was made by our editors after looking at the interest the league Top 20s drove relative to the time and resources required to prepare them. I can only speak to the players who were near misses in the leagues I did, Low-A West and Triple-A West. Eddys Leonard, Brandon Pfaadt and Ezequiel Tovar were the next three in the Low-A West who just missed. Hunter Brown and Thairo Estrada were the others who received Top 10 consideration in Triple-A West.
Heriberto Hernandez (Tampa Bay):
- If you were a member of the Tampa Bay front office, would you consider my minor league season a success?
Kyle Glaser: There were certainly some successful aspects and others that were less successful. I wouldn't declare it an outright success or failure, more in the middle where there was some good and some things to work on moving forward.
Nick (Saint Augustine):
- What should Ben Cherington strategy be now that phase one dealing existing talent for prospects is complete? They have a boat load of rule 5 players to protect. Should they consider trying to take on bad contracts for more prospects? Start adding vet free agents? This too me now becomes the hard part of a rebuild.
Kyle Glaser: The Pirates' next step is letting their young guys, many of whom we saw at the end of the year, have a full major league season and see how they handle it. They need to see how those guys play and let them get acclimated and at the same time continue looking for opportunities to add more talent in the minors. Taking on bad contracts to add prospects is one way to do that, but any veteran free agent signings should be minimal. Just sign enough guys to patch the existing holes and maybe could offer some value at the trade deadline if things work out, but you don't want to sign anyone who blocks the young guys from getting an opportunity to get everyday at-bats or consistent innings in the majors. This team is still 3-4 years away...this isn't close to being the time to start adding veterans with an eye on competing. They still need to add multiple waves of talent in the draft, internationally, through trades, etc. before they're ready for that.
Robert C. (Midwest):
- Jordan Walker's production dwarfs Marco Luciano and Noelvi Marte's at the same two levels, all the while being younger -- but he ranks 20+ spots behind them. Is this a product of big differences in projected defensive value?
Kyle Glaser: Yes. Luciano and Marte both generated somewhat surprising optimism they could stick at shortstop, and if they don't they'll be well above-average third basemen. Walker got pretty rough reviews at third base (one veteran evaluator characterized it as "zero" chance he stays there) and is likely to be a first baseman. That all said, Walker still projects to be a star. The bat is that special. It's just extremely likely he'll be doing so at first base, while Luciano and Marte have a chance to produce star-level production at shortstop, with third base the worst-case scenario. We're talking about very young players though, so a lot can change. If Marte and Luciano blow up and get too big while Walker puts in the work to be a better defender, that outlook could change. But right now, this is how evaluators across the game see it.
- Coby Mayo managed to put up a pretty similar line in Delmarva as Gunnar Henderson, and he was 6 months younger to boot. Could he find himself in the top 100 like Henderson did after his showing there, or does Mayo's position/defense keep him a tier below?
Kyle Glaser: Mayo is generally seen as a tier below Henderson, not just because of position, but there is no question about his power and if he keeps hitting for average, then yes, he's a candidate to rise onto the Top 100. Having a full year in full-season ball will be big for him.
- What are you hearing about Dodger prospects Jorbit Vivas. And Eddys Leonard as far as future potential?
Kyle Glaser: Leonard has a chance to be an everyday offensive second baseman. He can really hit. Vivas is tough. He's a smaller guy who doesn't really do a whole lot to jump out, but he has a knack for barreling baseballs and that can take you a long way. He might be able to bounce around as a 2B/3B type with his hitting ability from the left side.
- What are you hearing about Reginald Preciado after his first season? And what are his chances of sticking at shortstop?
Kyle Glaser: Good timing. I'm in the process of writing Preciado up for the Cubs chapter in the Prospect Handbook. He's really starting to grow into his body and he's showing the ability to drive the ball to the gaps from both sides of the plate. He's very, very aggressive, though and his plate discipline has a long way to go. He jumps at breaking balls and really needs to tighten the zone. If it all clicks you're looking at a power-over-hit third baseman. Shortstop isn't really in the cards. He's 6-5 and really starting to fill out. It's 3B all the way.
- Does Nick Pratto's k-rate concern you? Lots of power and walks but he's starting to look suspiciously like a three true outcomes guy.
Kyle Glaser: It does a little bit. A 29% K-rate isn't awful but it's certainly higher than ideal in the minors. Given he was 22 in the upper levels (he just turned 23 yesterday) and the ability he showed to make massive adjustments year over year, I'm betting he figures it out and makes enough contact to hit for respectable averages and not just be a three true outcomes guy. It might not be more than .250ish, but I don't think we'll see a guy hitting .220 or anything.
Kyle Weatherly (Timmonsville, South Carolina):
- I am hearing no one talking about the Padres 17 year old SS prospect Victor Acosta. His numbers look fantastic & he is only 17 now. Granted he is a LONG way from the show, but still why is no one talking him up? Am I missing something negative about him?
Kyle Glaser: We've talked about Acosta plenty at BA. Ben Badler highlighted him as the Padres top player in the 2021 signing class (https://www.baseballamerica.com/stories/2020-21-mlb-international-reviews-san-diego-padres/) and he ranked pretty highly in the Padres midseason update for a guy who had barely played a professional game to that point. (https://www.baseballamerica.com/stories/2021-san-diego-padres-midseason-top-30-prospects-update/). He's a good player and he'll continue to keep rising as long as he carries his DSL success over to the states, and the expectation is that he will.
- Where does Kyle Stowers project after his 2021 season? Could he be a useful full timer or more of a platoon guy?
Kyle Glaser: Stowers projects to be more of a part-time guy. He is a bit of a tweener in the outfield - not enough D to play center field and not quite enough offensive production to play the corners everyday given his strikeouts. But he's a nice player who does some things well in terms of getting on-base, has power, plays average D in the corners. He'll get to the majors and have a chance to stay there, it's just more likely to be in a part-time role. He actually hits lefties pretty well, so it wouldn't need to be strictly in a platoon.
- I was happy to see Jose Tena on Cleveland's AFL roster. What have you been hearing about him? He had a great year at high-A as one of the younger players in the league.
Kyle Glaser: Tena is getting a lot of positive reviews. Scouts like him a lot better than Aaron Bracho, for example. He can play shortstop, he can run, has a good swing, has some power. Swing decisions are just going to need some work at higher levels, but he has a chance to be an above-average everyday player if he makes the right adjustments. He's a good one.
Billy (Best Coast):
- Another year without Mike Trout in the playoffs and without the Yankees winning in October. Between that and Trout's comments last month, when can we expect him in the Bronx?
Kyle Glaser: The Angels aren't trading Trout. And even if they did, the Yankees don't have the pieces to acquire him. It's not happening.
- Why does AJ Preller still have a job?
Kyle Glaser: Peter Seidler has long been Preller's biggest champion, and that's given him a much longer leash than other GMs receive. (I can't think of any other GMs getting four manager hires, especially in seven years). What Preller does with this next manager hire will be telling in terms of whether he really is the person to guide the Padres to contention. There are some key character traits they need to get with this next manager hire, and it goes against a lot of what Preller has done before. If he keeps making the same mistake over and over, then we'll know.
Matt Veasey (Disappointedagainadelphia, PA):
- Hi Kyle. Thanks for the chat. Bryson Stott: legit big-league impact bat potential, or just as likely to be another Phillies first round disappointment?
Kyle Glaser: Stott's potential has always been more of a solid everyday player than an impact bat. If he just becomes a solid everyday regular, that's a win for the Phillies.
Stephen (New York):
- What exactly is the plan of the Yankees regarding moving forward with the big club they seem like a mess right now, I feel not making that one game playoff would have been better for them to truly evaluate where they are as a organization. Also evaluate their training method i.e. the young pitcher Devi and others.
Kyle Glaser: I'll be curious to see what changes the Yankees make to their coaching at the major league level. They just play such sloppy, fundamentally deficient baseball, and that's on coaching. They've got to fix the roster to get more athletic, bring in a more dynamic lineup and put players in positions they can actually play. That's steps one, two and three. But even if they do that, not much is going to change if they keep running into outs on the bases and making errors left and right. Whatever coaching methods they're employing in the majors right now, they're clearly not working and need to change.
- Which systems would you say have the toughest calls for you as far as picking a No. 1 prospect? I imagine Detroit could be quite tough, whereas there are others where it's very defined.
Kyle Glaser: Good question. Tigers are definitely one. Red Sox could be another with Casas vs. Mayer. D-backs could be interesting with Carroll vs. Thomas after Carroll missed almost the whole year and Thomas took a lot of positive steps forward and got to Triple-A. Jack Leiter vs. Josh Jung in the Rangers system has a chance to be closer than people think, although I think it still is Leiter. Those are just a few that jump to mind.
- What improvement would you say Spencer Torkelson and Riley Greene need to make in the AFL? Just more reps? What is your predictions for them next season? Thank you!
Kyle Glaser: It's more about just getting more reps against high-level competition than targeting any specific improvement. I guess for Greene you could say continuing to improve defensively in center field and Torkelson maybe tightening some things up defensively at first base. But this is more about them progressing in their development rather than working on any major flaw. They're both studs and this experience will help get them ready for the majors next year.
Chris (San Francisco):
- With the CBA expiring December 1, will the Rule 5 draft be held up until there’s a new agreement?
Kyle Glaser: I sent MLB this question and their spokesman's response was "I couldn’t guess at the moment." So yeah, seems TBD.
- Hi Kyle...what types of metrics or information would you suggest people look at when combing through DSL/rookie ball levels?
Kyle Glaser: Me personally, for position players, anything that indicates a lot of contact and good plate discipline. Low strikeouts, high walk rates, high averages, lots of extra base hits, etc. But at the same time, defenses at those levels aren't very good and you REAAAALLLLYY should not scout the stat line at those levels (really, at any level, but especially the DSL and complex leagues). I would really just suggest sticking to the scouting reports with players at those levels and not getting caught up in the stats.
- Juan Yepez was added to the 26 man for the Wild Card game which was exciting to see after such a good season. Hes still pretty under the radar, do you think he will break camp with the Cardinals next season? Does he have a chance to be an everyday player or more of a platoon?
Kyle Glaser: A lot of that is going to depend on injuries and/or if the NL permanently adopts the DH. Yepez is really a first baseman only now and given the presence of Paul Goldschmidt, it's hard to find him an avenue for frequent playing time unless the NL gets the DH back.
Jim (Philadelphia PA):
- What are the reviews of Cristian Hernandez's DSL season? Statistically, looks like he showed a little bit of everything but wondering as much about makeup and intangibles.
Kyle Glaser: Hernandez really impressed the Cubs with his high baseball IQ and and ability to slow the game down. He has instincts and feel to go with big talent. He has a chance to be pretty special.
- Thanks for the chat Kyle. Enjoyed your story this morning. My question...are there other examples that come to mind for you of smart front offices all chasing an undervalued type of player?
Kyle Glaser: Thanks Steve, appreciate it. In general we've seen front office chase versatile position players the last few years as they've tried to follow the examples of the Rays and Dodgers. Chasing certain pitch characteristics has certainly been the MO across baseball in recent years as well, although we've started to see some smarter teams zig while others zag and not just chase the four-seam up, curveball down profile.
Kyle Glaser: All right everyone, that will do it for today. Thanks for chatting, and enjoy playoff baseball.