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Notes in a Minor Key
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Monday, August 15, 2011

Draft signings

Today’s the last day that 2011 draft picks can be signed. I would expect a rash of announcements as we get close to the midnight deadline.

Post ‘em here.

Mike Emeigh Posted: August 15, 2011 at 07:30 PM | 63 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. akrasian Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:15 PM (#1703760)
Just commenting on the Dodgers' minor league free agents (since those are the ones I'm most familiar with)

Alfredo Gonzalez used to be a major league prospect as a reliever - but shoulder injuries hit him, and he's never really bounced back to effectiveness.

Venafro wouldn't be a bad NRI for a team looking for a loogie - not a great option, but if healthy he wouldn't be the worst lefty specialist out there.

Todd Donovan is very fast - but was succeeding in AA after college and 6 pro years, so he's not much of a prospect. He has said that he'd like to have a career like Dave Roberts, who also came up in his late 20s and who also has speed as his primary tool. The fact that he couldn't get brought up to the Dodgers last season with all the outfield injuries doesn't say a whole lot for him, though.
   2. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:16 PM (#1703762)
The Marlins' list of six-year minor-league free agents looks like about 1/2 of the Mudcats' roster.

There's really not a lot of gold here. I still think J.J. Davis could play, given a chance, but he's been through three organizations in six months now and probably has run out of chances.

Chris Saenz, on Milwaukee's list, is one of two pitchers to win his only major league appearance. Unfortunately, he blew out his elbow after that, and hasn't completely recovered.

Is someone else going to take a flyer on Jack Cust?

-- MWE
   3. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:23 PM (#1703773)
Todd Donovan is very fast - but was succeeding in AA after college and 6 pro years, so he's not much of a prospect.

Given all the talent that passed through Jacksonville this year, I'm sure he was seen a lot, and he'll probably land somewhere. There have been a couple of quotes that suggest he was a pretty good mentor to some of the younger guys like Delwyn Young and Joel Guzman.

-- MWE
   4. The Balls of Summer Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:32 PM (#1703790)
Okay, I'll start the possible LOOGY list. Please add to it (or subtract if I'm wrong about handedness).

Javier Lopez
Tony Fiore
Eddie Oropesa
Chuck Smith
Jeriome Robertson
Andy Van Hekken
Billy Traber
Donovan Osborne
Jimmy Anderson
Mike Venafro
Ryan Meaux
Stephen Randolph
Damian Moss
Rich Rundles
   5. Mister High Standards Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:34 PM (#1703792)
After one quick pass these are the guys who off the top of my head I think are intresting:

Adam Morrissey
Brad Baker
Michael Ryan
Tony Schrager
Billy Traber
Wikki Gonzalez

After that there is the list of usual suspects who every year I say is an intresting player and never amounts to anything:
Justin Kayne
Chris Coste
AJ Zapp
Billy McMil
Bri Faulkenberg
ect...
   6. Palm Beach Pollworker Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:35 PM (#1703793)
I might give Joe Horgan (ex-Nationals/Expos) another shot. He may have been a horror story this season, but he did OK in 04.
   7. 1k5v3L Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:37 PM (#1703798)
colin porter was with the dbacks? i'll be damned.

some team will definitely take a flier on david kelton.

corey myers = what matt bush will be in five years.
   8. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:38 PM (#1703799)
So the Cubs are finally giving up on Kelton? It seems like he's topped out as an AAAA type.

And someone please take Calvin Murray. I'm always afraid he's next in line to be the "solution" to a Cub problem.
   9. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:41 PM (#1703802)
In the Phillies' list...two Red Barons favorites cut loose - Sean Fesh (check out this website, last updated 2000) and Jim Rushford.

I'll always remember the game when Rushford went 4-4 with a walk, 6 RBIs and a walk-off 3-run homer. He should have just retired right there.

Aside from that...there's a lot of low cards in that hand. Jared Fernandez is available again, for you cultists out there.

Buzz Hannahan's real name was "Leonard"?
   10. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:42 PM (#1703804)
I'd love to see someone get Mike Colangelo.

He was lighting up the minors before getting an injury in his major league debut in 1999. He hasn't done well in his two cups of coffee since then, but his career OBP in the minors is close to .380. He's played in some hitters' parks, but I've been rooting for the guy to break through.

I mean, there's no way he's worse than Steve Finley.
   11. North Side Chicago Expatriate Giants Fan Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:42 PM (#1703806)
Hey Alex Sanchez - Dusty has an eye on you, and he likes what he sees... Alex, Neifi, and Jose Macias - the holy trinity!
   12. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:55 PM (#1703822)
Hey Alex Sanchez - Dusty has an eye on you, and he likes what he sees... Alex, Neifi, and Jose Macias - the unholy trinity!

Fixed.
   13. esseff Posted: October 25, 2005 at 09:58 PM (#1703824)
As well as he's pitched at Triple-A the last two seasons, and considering how many bad pitchers get starts in the majors each season, someone really oughta take a long look at Chris Gissell.
   14. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:20 PM (#1703852)
Juan Perez intrigues me. Red Sox fans, what's the word on him? 6-0 150 but has great K rates.
   15. Old Matt Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:38 PM (#1703867)
Chenard, Moreno, Nye and Redman are the four interesting names from the Mets. Orber should be re-signed. Prentice deserves much better. Chenard has been a flame out, but was a former top prospect and Nye is a solid infielder.
   16. Old Matt Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:40 PM (#1703870)
George Lombard

WE MUST PROTECT THIS FIVE TOOL PROSPECT!
   17. alkeiper Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:41 PM (#1703872)
Graham Koonce and Dennis Tankersley are available I see. Also Tony Saunders from the human-interest perspective.
   18. Old Matt Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:42 PM (#1703875)
I would add Micah Bowie to the potential LOOGY list.
   19. Most Favored Haitian Status Posted: October 25, 2005 at 10:47 PM (#1703881)
I hate any list on the internet that contains the name of someone my girlfriend hooked up with.
   20. Fat Dastard Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:00 PM (#1703889)
Looks like Saunders has retired.

Ex-pitcher Tony Saunders now running the show
   21. 44magnum Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:02 PM (#1703895)
I had to look Andy Ashby up on BBREF, as I could've sworn he got his 1st MLB win against Dave parker & the Reds circa '85. I was wrong, as he didn't debut until '91. That skinny dude used to have some stuff.

WE MUST PROTECT THIS FIVE TOOL PROSPECT!

Awesome. Living through the Bowden years in Cincy, here's my list of failed 5 Stoolers---would like to hear from the rest of you to add to the list:

Ozzie Timmons
Melvin Nieves
Tony Tarasco
Ruben Rivera
Chad Mottola
   22. Old Matt Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:06 PM (#1703896)
Timmons was playing for Norfolk (AAA) last year.

Tarasco's hitting the bong with Grant.
   23. Red Voodooin Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:14 PM (#1703905)
I didn't know Roosevelt Brown was back in the states. And in the White Sox organization! I always thought highly of Brown, he got dicked around by Don Baylor. How has he been doing?
   24. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:22 PM (#1703909)
Ozzie Timmons
Melvin Nieves
Tony Tarasco
Ruben Rivera
Chad Mottola


Ruben Mateo. How many tools did Reggie Taylor have?
   25. 44magnum Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:28 PM (#1703918)
Nice work, rLr, how could i have fogtotten Mateo? Taylor probably got the best chance. This isn't the place, but I have a bone to pick with you re: Covington.
   26. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:40 PM (#1703926)
Nice work, rLr, how could i have fogtotten Mateo?

He was the poster boy for Bowden's Toolsy Outfielder lust. To the best of my ability to discern, Taylor doesn't really have that many tools, outside of being fairly fleet of foot.

I have a bone to pick with you re: Covington.

I wasn't addressing the actual quality of the town (I've never been there), but the public perception of the place, which isn't exactly sterling in my experience.
   27. Gromit45 Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:54 PM (#1703936)
This is a part of BTF's new layout that is slightly confusing. From Primer, I click on "Notes in a Minor Key" and it doesn't take me to the article. To read the article, I clicked on "comments" which is obviously not intuitive.

Or perhaps I'm just stupid.
   28. WillYoung Posted: October 25, 2005 at 11:58 PM (#1703941)
Anybody who finds Michael Ryan interesting is...well... I don't know. But Michael Ryan is not interesting. He's barely AAA-filler and has no business ever returning to the Majors.
   29. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:09 AM (#1703946)
Remember that six-year minor league free agents haven't really been cut loose; they just have the opportunity to sign with another organization if they so choose, because they have at least six years in the minors and aren't on a 40-man roster. Many will end up back with their current organizations.

Pittsburgh's group:

If Jorge Cortes were a basestealer, he'd be Scott Podsednik. Because he's not, he's on this list. Someone ought to give him a shot; he can play the field and is a decent enough hitter and OBP guy. He wouldn't be any worse off the bench than Tike Redman.

Jeremy Harts was originally a toolsy outfielder who couldn't hit, but because he can throw mid-to-upper 90s, so the Bucs gave him a shot at being a pitcher. The problem there is that he has no idea where it's going; he's averaged 11 walks per nine innings in his minor league pitching career.

Koonce was a stathead poster boy, but his walk rate has been in decline the past couple of years, and he's about to turn 31. The time for him was two-three years ago.

Justin Reid has now had two bad seasons in three, after years of getting people out with pedestrian (at best) stuff; his walk rate jumped a bunch this year. He's probably reached his limit.

-- MWE
   30. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:15 AM (#1703951)
Or perhaps I'm just stupid.

No, perhaps I am. I'm still learning how to use all of the capabilities of the system, and I'm probably not putting the text in the right places.

-- MWE
   31. Spencer Benedict Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:34 AM (#1703966)
Samuel Marsonek

I hope Sam M. can get acquired and make a good career for himself.
   32. WillYoung Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:46 AM (#1703976)
Twins players:

Corky (Corky) Miller is a decent-field, no-hit catcher. He's basically Tom Prince and just needs to sign with the right team and manage to actually get a couple of hits in April to ensure himself of backup catcher status for the next five years.

Gabby Torres was never regarded as a prospect but served as an organizational soldier providing a pitching-staff with a Spanish-speaking catcher for the Twins.

Luis Jimenez joined the Twins organization from the Dodgers this season and missed the opening of the year because of a steroid suspension. He is a huge, left-handed hitter with immense power and poor strikezone judgment. Defensively, he has poor footwork around the base. He has a job solely because of his bat.

Brian Buchanan returned to the Twins is a minor league free agent in August but the team somehow decided that he wasn't even valuable enough to add to the 40-man roster for a September call-up (the Twins had an open spot). He can crush soft-tossing lefties, but is overmatched by right-handed pitching. He's suprisingly quick for somebody his size, but I think he's about out of chances.

Mike Ryan had what might be the flukeist month of the decade in September 2003 and managed to parlay it into way too many at bats the following two seasons. He has no plate discipline, isn't particularly fast and doesn't hit for power.

Todd Dunwoody has been a AAA player for a few seasons after fizzling out as a Marlins prospect. He was a toolsy guy with power but no control of the plate, but has gained some weight and lost a significant amount of quickness the past few years.

Brent Schoening repeated the year at Rochester and had his worst year as a pro. He's just filler at this point.
   33. H. Vaughn Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:46 AM (#1703980)
I didn't know Roosevelt Brown was back in the states. And in the White Sox organization! I always thought highly of Brown, he got dicked around by Don Baylor. How has he been doing?

Rosie came back with the Braves in spring training (NRI) and did not stick. He went .306/.375/.488 in about 400 ABs and is now 30. I regret that he was never able to make it in the show, because he could just flat rake.
   34. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:55 AM (#1703988)
W00t! Back online...

There's a bunch of could-be LOOGY types out there - two of the best not mentioned in post 4 are Jesse Carlson (decent stuff and stints of minor league excellent, but probably not ready for the show yet) and Dusty Bergman (really more of a standard middle/long reliever that happens to be left handed than a LOOGY - has adequate stuff with some sink (gets groundouts), but catches too much of the plate - probably ready to compete for a back of the pen role). Bumatay was a recent Rule 5 pick, Shane Nance has gotten chances as a LOOGY before, blah blah blah.
Is Mariano Gomez healthy? He's still pretty young and had a low 90s fastball with decent control.
He's currently a starter, but Ray Aguilar has generally been successful as a minor leaguer, both as a conventional pitcher and as a rare lefty knuckleballer. He's definitely worth picking up as a AAA swingman.
   35. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:08 AM (#1704014)
Oh, for those people reading my blathering ... I tend to look for the next Al Martin, an okay prospect that you can develop for a year in the minors, then add to the 40 man if they pan out rather than the next Billy Taylor or a vet who happens to be in the minors but can still play a little (like Ligtenberg).

Catcher: Nobody jumps out at me - Ryan Christianson was a top pick for the M's who hits semi-adequately and is still young (25 or so). Brian Peterson and Maxim St. Pierre have earned praise for their glove work and wouldn't embarrass themselves at the plate. Brad Cresse is a cripple pitch hitter. Sandy Martinez is a decent hitter on paper - I haven't watched him play. Michel Hernandez has some on base ability. Carlos Maldonado has average pop (though he didn't show it w/ Altoona). Javier Cardona was traded straight up for John Rodriguez at mid-season ... oops.
   36. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:23 AM (#1704056)
First Base: I've long liked Luis Jimenez (ever since a monster season in the Appy a few years back), so why stop now? He doesn't do much well other than hit - but he can hit. As a 23 year old, he hit .278/.349/.462 with New Britain this season (strong 1st half, struggled as pitchers adjusted) and can stumble about at both first and in the outfield corners. As Will noted, he was busted for 'roids.
Does Bonifay play first now? I think so. He's struggled to find a position but can hit (.282/.339/.556 with Altoona) - he normally has less power but a little more walks. It's his third straight year in AA - his career has been unfairly on hold, much like his father put the team's future.
Juan Tejeda is a good hit/no field first sacker who lacks the monster walk or homer totals for saber types to droll over him, but he could turn into a decent off the bench threat. Eric Crozier came down hard from an excellent '04, but has solid pop and took walks before this year. You know Bucky Jacobsen, you love Bucky Jacobsen, but is he healthy? Craig Brazell hits the ball hard, but lousy plate discipline makes him not worth pursuing.
   37. tyrus in Taiwan Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:28 AM (#1704077)
I want to ask why OF Chin-Feng Chen from Taiwan isn't on Dodgers' six-year minor league FA list. Thanks.
   38. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:52 AM (#1704118)
I don't know why Chen isn't listed - did he re-up with the Dodgers already?
   39. Iwakuma Chameleon (jonathan) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:05 AM (#1704156)
The A's have a few interesting guys there that I remember seeing at Sacramento. I think Andrew Beattie could make a productive bench guy if given the chance, and he's still only 28, so there's a couple years of usefulness in him for cheap. I think a lot of teams (cough:arizonadiamondbacks:cough) could do worse than Britt Reames. He got torched in 5 or 6 innings of whatever it was with the A's, but he was rock-solid for the Rivercats. Of course there's Jack Cust, but I was dissapointed with him, as I'm sure a lot of others were. I think his upside is something like .230/.350 off the bench in a pinch hitting/emergency DH role at this point. Morrissey's a weird one. He showed good on base skills and little else in AAA, but there are players in the majors who do less. Only he got sent down to AA in like July and bordered on being AA's very own Christian Guzman (okay, not that bad, but you get where I'm going with this.) I doubt he'll really have a career at this point, but he's only 25, and plays a variety of positions, so you never know. I think Bobby Smith would make a fine utility man for someone if given the chance. There's not much else there, although Fahrner and Mattioni were both great at AA, with the pitfall being they're 28 and 27, respectively. Both longshots to have any sort of career, but I'd take a flier on em and stick em in AAA if I were a GM.
   40. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:14 AM (#1704187)
Two more notes on the guys Mike mentioned:

1) Reid picked up a bunch of velocity in '04, which just as suddenly vanished this year. Hence the disparity in the two seasons' #s.

2) Cortes may have a positive substance test on his background. A player by that name was bounced during international competition a few years ago, though I can't absolutely swear it's the same guy.
   41. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:17 AM (#1704198)
After frantic googling, here's a cache of the page mentioning Cortes and substances.

Also of note: Cubs reliever Roberto Novoa, and ex-ML OF Roberto Kelly.
   42. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:20 AM (#1704205)
Also, where in the world did the Pirates dig up Vladimir Nunez? I always kinda liked him, if only because of the name and the totally nonsensical delivery.
   43. MM1f Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:27 AM (#1704222)
"Brad Cresse is a cripple pitch hitter. "

Thats LSU College World series hero and clutch hitter Brad Cresse to you.

I wonder what George Lombard would have done as a UGA RB....pity he hasn't had a better career
   44. Rob Base Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:42 AM (#1704248)
Prentice Redman we hardly knew ye. A prospect? No. Better option than the Ice Man? AYFKM?
   45. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:02 AM (#1704294)
I don't know why Chen isn't listed - did he re-up with the Dodgers already?

I can't find any info - he's not on LA's 40-man, and he's definitely got six years in the minors, so he should be one.

-- MWE
   46. JB H Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:28 AM (#1704363)
Red Sox:

Juan Perez is a reliever who throws pretty hard IIRC. He's 24 and just had a decent year in AAA.

Anasatacio Martinez is your generic pitcher who throws hard and has no control.

Sheldon Fulse gets injured every single year but he has good tools and has looked like a prospect at times. Wouldn't shock me if he had a career.

Rest is filler
   47. greenback slays lewks Posted: October 26, 2005 at 04:09 AM (#1704494)
As well as he's pitched at Triple-A the last two seasons, and considering how many bad pitchers get starts in the majors each season, someone really oughta take a long look at Chris Gissell.

Judging by the numbers, he's darn near perfect for that AAA spare tire you need for a pitching staff. Unfortunately in 2005 he chose the organization whose starting five started 160 games.
   48. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 04:16 AM (#1704522)
If I could sign any one mlfa of, it would be Prentice Redman.
   49. GregD Posted: October 26, 2005 at 04:18 AM (#1704538)
So if you have an organization with a pretty foul minor-league system--the Phillies, say--should you be signing these guys like crazy, except for the few spots (center field) where you've got prospects whose progress you don't want to disrupt?
   50. Psychedelic Red Pants Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:07 AM (#1705097)
So if you have an organization with a pretty foul minor-league system--the Phillies, say--should you be signing these guys like crazy, except for the few spots (center field) where you've got prospects whose progress you don't want to disrupt?

Yes. You might hit on one and have an extra trade chit. These guys make peanuts and you'll be paying someone something similar to fill the minor league roster spot anyway.

The bosox seem to make heavy use of the minor league rule 5 draft as well, though that hasn't produced anything of note yet.
   51. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: October 26, 2005 at 10:28 AM (#1705502)
The bosox seem to make heavy use of the minor league rule 5 draft as well, though that hasn't produced anything of note yet.

I think DiNardo will legitimately be a decent long man, at least.

Jesse Carlson's numbers in AA this year: 1.83 ERA in 39.1 IP, 42 K, 5 BB

In AAA, he had 17 K to 7 BB in 18.2 IP.
   52. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 12:07 PM (#1705539)
"Anasatacio Martinez is your generic pitcher who throws hard and has no control."

...and was once traded for Mike Gonzalez.
   53. Barca Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:43 PM (#1705618)
"Okay, I'll start the possible LOOGY list.

Eric Cyr was acquired to be a LOOGY ...
but I don't think he is ever going back to the majors, now.
   54. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 26, 2005 at 01:58 PM (#1705632)
DiNardo had a 3.15 ERA in AAA with a GB/FB rate of greater than 3/1. He's 26, so he seems like a useful piece. Whether it's worth continuing to piss off other teams - to whatever degree that's happening - to get an occasional DiNardo, that's another issue.

Juan Perez will be a nice LOOGY somewhere, I think. He can get the fastball in the low-90s and he has a curveball that needs to suck less, but he can probably get some lefties with it. I'd like the Sox to keep him around, if they can.
   55. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:12 PM (#1705652)
So if you have an organization with a pretty foul minor-league system--the Phillies, say--should you be signing these guys like crazy, except for the few spots (center field) where you've got prospects whose progress you don't want to disrupt?
I guess, but I'd rather have a system that's strong enough internally that I don't need but the best of these guys. Minor league FAs should cost more than internal options in many cases (less restricted market for their services) and they've often had at least 6-7 seasons to prove they aren't major league ready. I'm also unsure of the effect of that kind of practice on morale.

BTW, I Was a big Cresse fan while he was with LSU and early in his minor league career ... you know, back when he could hit.

Middle Infield: A pretty weak bunch. 2B Joey "Ballgame" Thurston can hit for average, but lacks secondary skills. SS Anderson Machado has nice range and is willing to draw walks, but is short with the stick and totally imploded in '05. He used to be a considered a prospect and would be a nice flyer for some team with an opening for a SS in AA to take to see if he can regroup. IF Eddy Garabito has a rep for being a hard worker and great guy, but probably lacks the skills to stick in the bigs. He has an okay bat, but lacks a standut skill to make him useful off the bench. Conversely, Alfredo Amezaga has tactical value - he's fast and has range - but hasn't hit in major league trials and lacks pop.
I like Cesar Crespo. < /loses any shred of credibility with Red Sox fans > Like Amezaga, he can run and plays multiple positions (not as well as Amezaga, but he's more cross trained). As a hitter, he's a little like fellow mlfa Desi Relaford, in that he tries to do things (like hit for power) than his body and tools suggest shouldn't be his forte and, like Relaford, it has worked some seasons and others it hasn't. Doesn't hit for much average, but draws walks outside of Beantown. 2B Caonabo Cosme is a solid AAA player and has the tools to develop into something more than that. 2B Aaron Herr had a weird season in Springfield, hitting around .300 with 20 homers, but not walking at all and topping 100 Ks. That's inconsistent with the player he was in the Braves' system, where he walked more but didn't show that kind of power. Not a great runner or fielder. Oh and, yeah, he's Tommie's kid - and was going to play for his dad in indy ball before the Cardinals came calling. IF Jason Alfaro looked like a possible utility guy before a lousy season with Syracuse. Strong arm, okay pop, doesn't walk or k much, lacks speed and range. 2B/3B Adam Morrissey is still young and showed promise with the bat a few years ago, but hasn't found a spot where he can field yet and struggled in AA. (It's weird - he's been better at Sac than Midland.). If you want a designated fielder, SS Jorge Velandia is still pretty good, as is IF Gookie Dawkins. Like fellow former Michigan Wolverine Brian Myrow, 2B/UT Bobby Scales is all kinds of unheralded, but hit pretty well with Portland last year (OPS > 800) without gathering much attention. Like Myrow, he doesn't have the glove to stick on the left side of the defensive spectrum. Former Rule 5er Jose Morban could be a nice pickup as a AAA utility guy - he's athletic and does a number of things *okay*, he may well eventually do some of those things well.
   56. ElGuaposGhost Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:26 PM (#1705680)
It appears that Brad Baker is on the Padres 40-man. If he is actual a minor-league FA, it would be a big mistake by the Pads – 75/32 in only 66 innings. I read somewhere comparing him to Keith Foulke – low 90’s heat with his changeup as his outpitch.

http://www.soxprospects.com/ex-players/baker-brad.htm
http://sandiego.padres.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/team/roster_40man.jsp?c_id=sd
   57. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 02:37 PM (#1705704)
Remember that six-year minor league free agents haven't really been cut loose; they just have the opportunity to sign with another organization if they so choose, because they have at least six years in the minors and aren't on a 40-man roster.

I received an E-mail off-line from Keith Law, who corrected me on this. A minor league free agent has no contract for the following season and his prior org's reserve rights have expired.

I know, however, that the Marlins and Pirates have verbal understandings with some of their six-year guys that they will resign them if they can't find anything else suitable, and I'd guess that other teams do something similar. You still have to fill out (in most cases) five full-season rosters, and few teams have enough home-grown prospects to do that.

-- MWE
   58. ElGuaposGhost Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:27 PM (#1705771)
Mike - thanks - so Baker can sign with anyone in theory. Baker seems like the best talent in theis bunch. Even though the Sox traded him away, they should be all over him.

Is Law still working for the Jays?
   59. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:27 PM (#1705773)
I thought Baker had lost some of that low 90's heat and was now trading on his change pretty heavily. That could be mistaken - I haven't watched him pitch in a few years. I know he was named the top reliever in the PCL in BA's annual poll - if available, he's worth pursuing.

I know, however, that the Marlins and Pirates have verbal understandings with some of their six-year guys that they will resign them if they can't find anything else suitable, and I'd guess that other teams do something similar.
I've never tracked it, but (top of my head) I'd think that over half of these guys will either re-up with their former org or retire/be unable to find a spot in the NA.
   60. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:57 PM (#1705822)
Third Base: Justin Leone has power, draws walks, and generally is thought to have pretty good range at third (has played spot amounts at short). However, he's also very error prone, strikes out a lot (which will keep him from hitting for much average), and has been said to have confidence issues. BA pimped Juan Richardson in the Phillies system for a few years. He's never hit like some thought he should, but he's a solid defender with a little power. Avelino Asprilla is a pretty good fielder at third and not horrendous with the bat, but, at best, is still a few years away. UT Napoleon Calzado can hit for average and play a few positions poorly, but lacks secondary skills. Mike Kinkade is far from young, but could fit in nicely on a big league bench with his ability to get on base (hits and plunks, more than walks), decent power, and ability to play multiple spots (including catching in a pinch). Mike Hessman had a rough year, as he kept his trademark power but his big dumb swing kept his average low. Like Kinkade, he can play all the corners (though he can't catch). Like Jeff Bagwell, 3B/1B Earl Snyder has pretty good pop (consistently high double and homer figures) and didn't really belong at third. Unlike Bagwell, Snyder can't get on base and isn't, um, all that great. Jose Leon is a lot like Snyder, but with a more conventional stance. Vince Rooi hasn't hit much as a pro, but did have a nice half season last year, will only be 24 or so, and has plus tools.
   61. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 03:59 PM (#1705825)
It appears that Brad Baker is on the Padres 40-man.

Apparently he's going though, according to this story:

One big name player who is not expected to return is Brad Baker, the former closer in Portland. Word is the Padres were not enamored with how he handled his demotion from the closer's role.

-- MWE
   62. Pleasant Nate (Upgraded from 'Nate') Posted: October 26, 2005 at 04:23 PM (#1705876)
I love going through these lists as much as the next guy, but is there really all that much value here?

I went through last season's 6-year MILB FA list just now, and there were probably only four players on the entire list who helped a major league club. Brian Moehler, Emil Brown, and Seth Etherton all helped their clubs in '05 and were worthy claims. Chip Ambres helped the big club by helping them to acquire Tony Graffanino. Outside of that, there isn't much there. Maybe the '04 off-season was a down year for MILB FAs, does anyone have the '03 or '02 lists?
   63. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 26, 2005 at 04:30 PM (#1705884)
I love going through these lists as much as the next guy, but is there really all that much value here?

No, there isn't. Most of these guys are six-year minor league FAs for a reason.

I think it's a stretch to say that Seth Etherton helped the A's. A 6.62 ERA in three starts isn't exactly helping much.

-- MWE
   64. Kevin Sweet Child Romine (aco) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 05:24 PM (#1705981)
Juan Perez is a reliever who throws pretty hard IIRC. He's 24 and just had a decent year in AAA.

According to this site, Perez is 27, which was discovered after some visa issues. He does throw the ball with his left hand, though, so, who knows?

I think Ligtenberg is definitely worth a flyer. He'll be 34 next year, but put up some good numbers at AAA lat year (50K in 50 innings, only 7 BB & 4 HR), along with some terrible numbers with Arizona. Anyone know how he manged to give up 73 hits in 55 innings in 2004? Could that have just been monumentally bad luck, or has he really lost something?
   65. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 05:53 PM (#1706027)
Let me ask this (I've always been unclear) - if a team signs a MLFA, does that player have to go on the 40-man roster for the new team, or can he stay off the 40-man until next offseason (when he would, I guess, have to be added or become a MLFA again)?
   66. esseff Posted: October 26, 2005 at 05:55 PM (#1706034)
I went through last season's 6-year MILB FA list just now, and there were probably only four players on the entire list who helped a major league club. Brian Moehler, Emil Brown, and Seth Etherton all helped their clubs in '05 and were worthy claims. Chip Ambres helped the big club by helping them to acquire Tony Graffanino. Outside of that, there isn't much there.

Johnny Rodriguez? (albeit after a midseason trade)
   67. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:02 PM (#1706055)
If you sign a minor league contract, you are not on the 40 man roster I believe. You are on the roster of the minor league team you sign with. If the team wants to add you to the active roster, they must purchae your contract from the minor league team.
   68. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:04 PM (#1706057)
There isn't much here - nor should there be.

I'd argue that the quality of mlfa's has dropped in recent years, as teams do a better job of managing their more marginal resources. However, while most of these guys will never produce at the major league level, many can (whether or not they get an opportunity). Plus, a one-year window might be a bit short for evaluative purposes ... sure, not for most of these guys (who will be free agents again the next year), but some of these players will make forty man rosters and have value later on - like Chip Ambres. Still - this is mostly about minor league roster filler.

BTW, shouldn't D'Angelo Jimenez and Kevin Booker be on this list?
   69. esseff Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:05 PM (#1706059)
UCCF,

Only in the rare case (like Etherton last winter) where they sign a major-league contract do they have to go on the 40-man. Most of these guys will sign one-year minor league contracts -- with a spring training invite for the best of 'em -- and have to earn their way up to the major league roster. Otherwise, they go back in the hopper next off-season. They tend to be a nomadic bunch.
   70. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:08 PM (#1706065)
Only in the rare case (like Etherton last winter) where they sign a major-league contract do they have to go on the 40-man. Most of these guys will sign one-year minor league contracts -- with a spring training invite for the best of 'em -- and have to earn their way up to the major league roster. Otherwise, they go back in the hopper next off-season. They tend to be a nomadic bunch.

That's what I thought. It wouldn't make a lot of sense the other way - teams probably let these guys go largely because they *don't* have room on their 40-man rosters, so it's unlikely they'd dump one and then sign another and be faced with the same problem.

That's gotta be a tough life, going from org to org and hoping to get hot enough one spring to get a real chance.
   71. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:18 PM (#1706084)
My first thought was that there are a lot of guys here who have had major league experience but dropped out of (my) sight. I didn't realize that so many of them were in the minors. I figured that some of these guys had retired or gone to other countries to play.
   72. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:26 PM (#1706095)
That's gotta be a tough life, going from org to org and hoping to get hot enough one spring to get a real chance.

I agree, and I feel for these guys more than for anyone in the game. So close to making it, but not.

I sometimes see one of these guys in an organization that seems like a poor choice - severely blocked by quantity and/or qualility of his competition. However, then the occasional Aaron Small strikes paydirt, and the choice looks smart.
   73. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:33 PM (#1706109)
Outfield: Prentice Redman is this year's Chip Ambres. He's not as patient, but he's a solid defender who can run and has some pop. Minimally, he'd make a capable fifth outfielder (do those still exist?) and isn't far from being ready from a gig as a primary backup at all three spots. Chad Allen would make a solid major league pinch hitter (hits for average with gap power, doesn't draw many walks). He can't play center, lacks secondary skills, and has personality issues that led to his release from Oklahoma last season despite a .345 average.
Abraham Nunez has long tantalized with plus tools - this year he hit respectably well for Tacoma and is worth taking a chance on in the event that real gains were made.
Ramon Nivar was once considered a top prospect, until he "aged", moved to the outfield, and stopped hitting. Still young, still fast - it might be worth seeing what you can do with him.
Otherwise, it's a lot of the same old guys. John Barnes and Pete Zoccolillo can hit for average. Calvin Murray, Julio Ramirez, and Reggie Taylor have good range, but don't hit well enough. Shawn Garrett, George Lombard and Mike Colangelo do a little bit of everything, but nothing that well. Jorge Cortes is a poor man's Colangelo (but younger). Rosie Brown never learned to field. Tony Alvarez and Ryan Ludwick have talent and injury questions. Brian Buchanan could reemerge as a platoon guy. Ernie Young is awesome, but 112. J.J. Davis has power and a strong arm, but takes lousy routes in the outfield and is too streaky at the plate.
   74. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 06:54 PM (#1706155)
What qualifies you for an MLB pension? One game? Simply being on a roster?
   75. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 07:36 PM (#1706238)
I believe (but don't know) that it's one day on an active roster (for medical benefits) and 43 days to be fully vested. The ten year mark carries some additional value (witness Mike Mordecai's brief stint with the Fish this year), but I don't know what that entitled him to.
   76. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 07:39 PM (#1706243)
Brain just started functioning - sorry. I'd like to amend the above to:
* 1 day - medical benefits
* 43 days - pension
* 10 years - fully vested in pension

Again, the above may be wrong.
   77. Pleasant Nate (Upgraded from 'Nate') Posted: October 26, 2005 at 08:05 PM (#1706289)
I love going through these lists as much as the next guy, but is there really all that much value here?

No, there isn't. Most of these guys are six-year minor league FAs for a reason.

I think it's a stretch to say that Seth Etherton helped the A's. A 6.62 ERA in three starts isn't exactly helping much.


Whoops, I thought Etherton pitched better than that, guess I should have looked. Replace him with John Rodriguez, as mentioned above.

I found the '02 off-season list here.

The results:

Loaiza got a minor league deal, although he wasn't a minor league free agent (I'm guessing without looking). Brian Daubach had a 180 pretty poor at-bats for the Pale Hose. Ditto for James Baldwin on the pitching side. Rafael Betancourt got a minor league deal, but he was coming back from Japan. Ruben Sierra got a minor league deal for some reason after putting up a good year in Texas. Darren Oliver had that weird year with the Rockies. Wilson Alvarez stayed healthy for a little while. Brooks Kieschnick was fun.

Luis Ayala, Ron Villone, Matt Miller, Ronnie Belliard, and Rudy Seanez have been great, but all were given up on after signing and released or selected in a Rule five draft. Rod Beck was good for 30 innings for the Padres. The Run Fairy, Dan Micelli, and Kent Mercker worked out too.

From the more traditional sector, Adam Melhuse has been a quality backup for the A's. Jeremi Gonzalez turned it around and had one pretty good year for the Devil Rays. Ron Mahay and Brian Shouse have helped Texas a bit. Josh Towers is a very solid innings eater for Toronto. Dan Wheeler has pitched pretty well, but the Mets gave him away for nothing. Kiko Calero was good when healthy then used to get Mark Mulder.

The three best signs:

Ryan Freel
Casey Blake
Aaron Miles -- for getting traded straight up for Juan Uribe thereafter.

I know we've had a few extra years here, but even without the major league veterans this seems like a much better class.
   78. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 08:24 PM (#1706313)
Among righty relievers, Matt Roney is a very good risk - he made it to the majors as a starter while featuring a reliever's repetoire (low-to-mid 90s fastball, solid curve, no consistent third pitch). Moved to the pen fulltime, he had a very nice year with both the Tigers org (who let him out of his contract midseason) and the Rangers. I think I prefer him to Baker, another good choice.
   79. The Bones McCoy of THT Posted: October 26, 2005 at 08:54 PM (#1706348)
Ryan Snare....Don't sign him 'cuz IT'S A TRAP!

Best Regards

John
   80. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 26, 2005 at 09:24 PM (#1706375)
"Tony Alvarez and Ryan Ludwick have talent and injury questions."

I'd tend to stick Colangelo in that category as well, possibly even in place of Alvarez.
   81. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 26, 2005 at 09:48 PM (#1706401)
I'd tend to stick Colangelo in that category as well, possibly even in place of Alvarez.
Agreed. Does anyone know Alvarez's projected health for '06?

Oh, Cody Ransom might make a fungible middle infielder - he can run, field a little, and isn't too awful at the plate.

More pitchers later, when I've time... < /post count building >
   82. MM1f Posted: October 26, 2005 at 11:48 PM (#1706514)
Keep em coming Der-K, its a fun read and your random thoughts on these guys are a lot more organized than mine.

BTW, Roney had a rep for uncoachablity and general bad makeup at one point FWIW...still a heck of an arm by mlfa standards
   83. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 27, 2005 at 03:01 AM (#1706823)
Thanks, MM#1FLtH. I know my listings are overkill, but they're the kind of thing I like reading. As for organized, they're pretty much off the cuff - I'm sure there's some inaccuracies in there.

Ligtenberg is a good pickup, so is Javy Lopez (groundball machine). I don't know what to make of Jason Childers - he has blah stuff (unlike his brother Jason) but gets outs everywhere he goes. Extreme groundballer with blah peripherals, but he merits a shot at a look. Jorge Vasquez imploded in '05, but has a good slider and 90 mph fastball.
   84. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 27, 2005 at 03:12 AM (#1706850)
BTW, Roney had a rep for uncoachablity and general bad makeup at one point
That sounds familiar, thanks!

Correction on Vasquez:
I remembered his Richmond stint. (14 ip, 10.93 ERA) However, it wasn't as bad as all that as hitters hit .286/.388/.411 off him with 20 K - not great, sure - but hardly the stuff of 10.93 ERAs. Also, this doesn't include his stellar AA work (40.1 IP, 1.12 ERA, .163/.238/.222, 45 K) or Atlanta time (9 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 HR, 5 BB, 9 SO). Mea culpa, Jorge.
   85. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 27, 2005 at 02:25 PM (#1707744)
"I don't know what to make of Jason Childers - he has blah stuff (unlike his brother Jason)"

That must have been confusing when they were kids.
   86. Mike Emeigh Posted: October 27, 2005 at 05:01 PM (#1708038)
"I don't know what to make of Jason Childers - he has blah stuff (unlike his brother Jason)"

That should be brother Matt.

-- MWE
   87. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: October 29, 2005 at 05:29 PM (#1710551)
test
   88. Toolsy McClutch Posted: November 08, 2005 at 08:39 PM (#1724072)
I don't know why, but I think this is neat.
   89. TDF, trained monkey Posted: November 08, 2005 at 08:50 PM (#1724094)
So Street ends up pitching for every team in his division?

Huh.
   90. zack Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:07 PM (#1724133)
Only if the White Sox move to Sacramento and the Mariners move to Las Vegas in 2009.
   91. spivey Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:13 PM (#1724148)
These are some very optimistic projections. That 2009 is an MVP level season. He has a few other all-star caliber seasons. I seem him possibly peaking as a lower tier allstar player but not this well.

Both players are projected to be very healthy.

Huston Street has a year that rivals Gagne's 2003, and is a top line reliever for 11 years.

I think both projections are optimistic, particularly Street's. I think Howard's BA will fall off a cliff sooner than that, and I think Street's K rates will fall quicker too. I also don't think Street will ever be approaching the 101 K in 83 IP level, but it's interesting nonetheless.
   92. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:19 PM (#1724165)
Both players are projected to be very healthy.

Sickels says he assumes that players remain healthy.

-- MWE
   93. More Dewey is Always Good Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:22 PM (#1724176)
I'm impressed by Howard's 2010 season - over 700 PA's in 157 games!
   94. Old Matt Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:27 PM (#1724194)
Howard's is entirely too optimistic. I don't ever see him hitting over .275 in a full ML season.
   95. spivey Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:28 PM (#1724197)
Ah. I thought he meant the crystal ball projected them to be healthy, not that projections were based on them being healthy.
   96. spivey Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:29 PM (#1724201)
Actually, that's over 700 PAs in 147 games. AINT GONNA HAPPEN
   97. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: November 08, 2005 at 09:53 PM (#1724268)
looks like Sickels believes Bowden will still be running the Nats in 2015.

I think Howard can hit over .275 over a full season, and will do so more than once. He's never hit under that over a full season as a pro, and he did a good job of closing up some perceived holes in his swing in 2005.
   98. spivey Posted: November 08, 2005 at 10:07 PM (#1724304)
Howard did't close too many holes. He was on pace for well over 150 strikeouts in a full season.
   99. Urban Faber Posted: November 08, 2005 at 10:12 PM (#1724315)
looks like Sickels believes Bowden will still be running the Nats in 2015

But the new owner announcement will be "coming soon" ...
   100. Slinger Francisco Barrios (Dr. Memory) Posted: November 08, 2005 at 10:21 PM (#1724334)
I'm pretty sure Street won't be going to the Sox in '17. Probably the Padres.
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