Prospect Hot Sheet Chat (May 13)

Crooked Nils (The IBC): YOU are the GM of the Angels. I offer you ALL the players on this hot sheet for Trout. What do you say?
Josh Norris: First of all, I credit you on somehow having all of the players in the Hot Sheet in your farm system. You, your scouting director, international director, pro and amateur scouts have done a heckuva job. The answer is: Yes. I would take 20 prospects for Trout. The realistic answer is: The Angels are not going to trade Mike Trout.

Henley (Colorado): First of all, thanks Josh, love the work you do! With the looming Coors Field "effect" for Jeff Hoffman, does pitching in the "Hitter friendly" PCL at AAA help prepare him at all for that and especially since so far, he's done well there? Or do such results in the PCL do nothing to prepare him for how he will fare at Coors?
Josh Norris: I actually asked a farm director (not the Rockies) a similar question and he said it can help a little bit, though it’s not an ideal situation, either. You don’t want your pitchers there, but it can help prepare them for a tough environment at the next level.

Patty Cakes Gillespie (Disney, FL): I have not seen a lot about Josh Ockimey all year. Who is a realistic comp for him?
Josh Norris: Because he’s a powerful, black first baseman from Philly, the comparisons naturally go to Ryan Howard. That’s lofty (Howard was very good at one time, remember), but he does project as an offensive first baseman with the juice to take it out of any park.

Cro n Gro (Glastonbury, CT): Who would you pick over the next SEVEN years - Kershaw or Urias?
Josh Norris: Kershaw. Dude is the arguable best pitcher in the game and has been for some time. He’s so good, in fact, that Vin Scully accidentally called him Sandy Koufax on last night’s broadcast. I love, love, love Julio Urias, but Kershaw is the man.

Warren (New London): Although he wasn't any hotter this week than he has been all year, Jake Cronenworth is off to an incredible start, with OBP over .500. How good might he become? Can he stay at SS?
Josh Norris: Cronenworth is super interesting, for sure. Look for a bit on him in the next issue of BA. It’s way too soon to say whether or not he’ll stick there, but the Rays obviously see enough athleticism.

Daniel (Katy, TX): Is Yusniel Diaz the best Dodger prospect after Julio?
Josh Norris: No. Jose De Leon, Cody Bellinger, Alex Verdugo and Grant Holmes are all in line before Diaz.

Jilly Bean Levine (Yester, NY): What happens first - Bryce Harper is a Yankee, or the Mets win the World Series?
Josh Norris: I’ll go with the Mets winning the World Series.

david allen (new jersey): Thoughts Tommy Joseph getting the call? Who do you think has the better shot for MLB success hoskins or joseph?
Josh Norris: I am so happy for Tommy Joseph. After all the concussions and other injuries that hampered him after the trade, I was skeptical he’d ever get the call. Now that he’s there, I’d bet he provides the Phillies a nice bit of righthanded power.

Douglas (Vancouver): Hi Josh, Have you heard anything about how Bryan Buxton is playing in AAA? Thanks, Doug
Josh Norris: Byron Buxton is OPSing .900 in Triple-A. Hindsight is 20/20, but I thought he was rushed the first time he was called up, directly from Double-A. I fully expect him to be a stud in the big leagues at some point, but he’s still just 22 and it’s clear the bat needs a bit more development.

Baseball Fan (Wisconsin): Is Jameson Taillon worth stashing in fantasy baseball leagues and when do you think he will be called up?
Josh Norris: A) Yes. He is a very talented young arm who simply has been waylaid by injuries. B) If he keeps going on his current track, he could be up sometime this summer.

Jilly Bean Levine (Upstate NY): If Matz needs to miss time, who do the Mets have in the minors to help out in the short term?
Josh Norris: The two most enticing options, to me, at Triple-A, are Rafael Montero and Gabriel Ynoa.

Jose (Washington, DC): I know Alex Bregman didn't make the hot sheet this week, but he's having an amazing season. I thought the general consensus on him was that he's a high-floor medium ceiling guy. Has that ceiling estimate changed as a result of his tearing up AA?
Josh Norris: As a general rule, a player’s ceiling doesn’t usually change after six weeks unless there’s a catastrophic injury of some kind. Bregman should be a very good player, though, but it’s not clear where he’ll fit in Houston unless some moves happen. To go the other way on that question, let’s use Rafael Devers. He has not had a great start in high Class A. Even so, we still think he has the potential to be a stud.

Steven d'asterhaze (Shark, CA): Christian Stewart is 22 and in A, and KILLIN' It. When do you think he'll hit AA? Think he can make an impact for DET in Sept.?
Josh Norris: He could hit Double-A at midseason, but I strongly doubt he’ll see Detroit this year. As a side not, I find it fascinating that he’s two homers shy of last year’s total for the Florida State League’s co-home run leaders (Austin Dean and Andrew Pullin) two weeks into May.

Ken (Lakewood CA): He didn't make the list for this week, but Mike Clevinger (CLE) seems to be pitching well in AAA this year. What is your thinking on him? Will we see him in Cleveland in 2016?
Josh Norris: Clevinger was very close to making the list this week. I think he’s got the stuff to be a mid-to-back-rotation type in the big leagues over the long-term. And yes, I think we’ll see him for multiple starts at some point this season.

Dorman Dating (Florida): What's going on with Peter O'brien? He has crazy power and we have yet to see him called up...why?
Josh Norris: Mostly, it’s because the National League does not have the designated hitter (It should, by the way. Sorry, Bartolo and Thor). He’s always had stupid power but has bounced from designated hitter to catcher to first base to the outfield in search of a defensive home.

Zeke P (New York): Considering that Frazier is playing RF in AA because Zimmer is playing CF, is there any chance Frazier plays CF in the Majors? Or is he destined for a corner OF spot in the Bigs?
Josh Norris: He’s probably going to be a corner guy, which is appropriate given his throwing arm and power. Zimmer should be the one of those two to stay in center field.

Frank (St Louis): What do you expect from Alex Reyes when he's reinstated next week?
Josh Norris: After a little bit of warmup, I’d expect the same from Alex Reyes as we saw last year. Ace-caliber stuff with occasional bouts of wildness.

Rodrick (thedoldrums): I've been on the Dylan Cozens bandwagon for a few years now, and he's really putting all that talent to use consistently. He'll probably be the first 10-10 guy of the season--NO ONE would have predicted that! So...what kind of ceiling might he have?
Josh Norris: Was talking with a scout about Cozens last night while trying to put together the list for the Hot Sheet. It always surprises me how young he is. Seems like he’s been around for ages but he’s still just 21 years old. He’s got the power and speed combo that everyone drools over, and last year the Phillies had him focus more on average than power. The scout who saw him this year says the approach has gotten better and, if everything goes right, he could be an average big leaguer.

Jeff (Texas): If Urias had reported to Great Lakes at 18 instead of 16, then had the exact same three years, where would he rank in the Top 100? Still a Top-10 guy?
Josh Norris: Absolutely. He’s got nasty stuff and the poise to go with it. My well-known Anderson Espinoza love aside, Urias has my vote for the best pitching prospect in the minors. If he were 21 instead of 19 in Triple-A, I’d think the same thing.

AD - Friend Zone (KY): Whats the deal with Alex Meyer, I know he has had his struggles but is he a long term starter or reliever?
Josh Norris: He’s a reliever for sure. Far too many control/command issues to be a starter.

Patty G Billz b Money (Philly): Yo - Mark Appel... what do YOU think is a realistic ceiling now?
Josh Norris: Being that you’re from Philly, I appreciate the “Yo” to begin your question. I think he’s probably best suited as a reliever who can let the fastball and slider rip for one inning at a time.

Ben (Los Angeles): Hi Josh, I'm looking for decent lottery ticket with my final pick in 500 deep prospect league. I'm looking at Dylan Cozens, Wuilmer Becerra, CJ Hinojosa, Wade Lamont, Francisco Mejia, Mitch Keller, Ronald Guzman, Josh Ockimey, Angel Perdido. Any advice?
Josh Norris: Gonna go with Mejia, simply because if he clicks it’s extremely hard to find catching talent in fantasy.

Josh Norris: Okay, friends, that’s all for today. Have fun this weekend and pet your local batdog.

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