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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Baseball America: 2012 Top 100 Prospects

Who will be the next Ben Grieve?

1 Bryce Harper of, Nationals Age: 19. ETA: 2012.
He should get to the majors as a teenager; settle in and enjoy it.
2 Matt Moore lhp, Rays Age: 22. ETA: 2012.
He makes it look so easy, and he’s so good he’ll make David Price a No. 2 starter.
3 Mike Trout of, Angels Age: 20. ETA: 2012.
His signing scout, Greg Mohrhardt, has since been promoted to Angels crosschecker.
4 Yu Darvish rhp, Rangers Age: 25. ETA: 2012.
It’s hard to moderate expectations for proven Japanese ace, but he should definitely surpass the Dice-K bar.
5 Julio Teheran rhp, Braves Age: 21. ETA: 2012.
There’s absolutely no link between his last name and Darvish’s Iranian heritage.
6 Jesus Montero c, Mariners Age: 22. ETA: 2012.
He should face less pressure replacing Miguel Olivo rather than Jorge Posada.
7 Jurickson Profar ss, Rangers Age: 19. ETA: 2013
He should beat out golf, cheesy theme parks as Myrtle Beach’s top 2012 attraction.
8 Shelby Miller rhp, Cardinals Age: 21. ETA: 2013
He’s looking to become the first big leaguer named Shelby, and it should happen soon.
9 Trevor Bauer rhp, Diamondbacks Age: 21. ETA: 2012
The unique ones are the hardest to project, and no one’s as unique as Bauer.
10 Dylan Bundy rhp, Orioles Age: 19. ETA: 2013.
First goal: Beat big brother Bobby to Baltimore. Next: Make the Orioles relevant.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 11:33 AM | 37 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: prospect reports

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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 02:06 PM (#4065542)

He should beat out golf, cheesy theme parks as Myrtle Beach’s top 2012 attraction.


But will he beat out Kenny Powers?
   2. Danny Posted: February 21, 2012 at 02:34 PM (#4065565)
Oh, BA...
14 Yoenis Cespedes of, Athletics Age: 26. ETA: 2012.
Athletics hope he works out better than their last blockbuster Cuban, Ariel Prieto.

26 Jarrod Parker rhp, Athletics Age: 23. ETA: 2012.
Could be the next great A's pitcher to be traded away in three years.

57 A.J. Cole rhp, Athletics Age: 20. ETA: 2014.
Projectable 6-foot-4, 190-pounder came over in trade with the Nationals and now will play the jeans salesman in "Moneyball II."
   3. AROM Posted: February 21, 2012 at 02:51 PM (#4065583)
#1, beat me to it.

Kenny Powers Stats:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenny_Powers#Statistics
   4. AROM Posted: February 21, 2012 at 02:55 PM (#4065588)
20 Taijuan Walker rhp, Mariners Age: 19. ETA: 2014.

Legitimate comparisons to Dwight Gooden (the good, pitching part)? Sign us up.


That's just wrong. If comparisons to Gooden were warranted, he'd be #1 on the list.

edit: I'm not commenting on Walker's potential, just the use of comparisons in this manner. It's never fair to the kid. A few more like that in the list. I'd rank Whitey Ford and Gary Sheffield a bit higher if those were real.
   5. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:03 PM (#4065597)
But, he's black. Who are you going to compare him to, a player with actually similar skills who looks all different and stuff?
   6. MM1f Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:03 PM (#4065598)
That's just wrong. If comparisons to Gooden were warranted, he'd be #1 on the list.


Um, comparison doesn't mean "will become."

A guy whose stuff and arm action remind you of Dwight Gooden doesn't have to be number one on any list.

Think about Javier Baez. He is a stocky high school shortstop (who won't play short much longer) from Florida with a lightening quick bat. As BA pointed out, that sounds like Gary Sheffield. That doesn't mean Javier Baez will be just as good as Sheffield.

edit: I'm not commenting on Walker's potential, just the use of comparisons in this manner. It's never fair to the kid. A few more like that in the list. I'd rank Whitey Ford and Gary Sheffield a bit higher if those were real.


I think you are treating scouting comparisons the same as a ZiPS comparison, which is a mistake. A scouting comparison is designed to help convey elements of a player's skill set or personality, it isn't supposed to be infallible. They often do not try to sum up all of a players game, merely elements of it such as a specific tool, personality trait or body type.

This leads to dumb, snarky threads around draft time when "OMG, LOL, this dumb scout thinks Mike Stutes is the next Tim Hudson!" when, in reality, the scout is merely saying the body types are similar.

The Ford/Banuelos comparison is an example of that. Newman said Banuelos composure reminded him of Whitey Ford. Is that so obviously wrong?

What is "unfair to the kid" is fans and readers who take the comparisons to be exact.
   7. Bourbon Samurai Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4065602)
Ugh, why'd they have to bring up Ariel Prieto.
   8. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:30 PM (#4065623)
The Ford/Banuelos comparison is an example of that. Newman said Banuelos composure reminded him of Whitey Ford. Is that so obviously wrong?


I guess why would a scout even go there? If you have to compare a kid to a player, why automatically go to a HoFer or borderline HoFer? I mean, nobody says that some kid reminds them of John Burkett, even though most prospects would be lucky to have Burkett's career, and I'm sure he was pretty composed, too. All in all it doesn't add much - the guy's just saying the kid's composed and Whitey Ford doesn't have much to do with it.

I'm not saying it doesn't have its place - making crazy comparisons to HoFers is part of the Spring minor league story - but it's pretty much meaningless.
   9. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:31 PM (#4065627)
I guess why would a scout even go there? If you have to compare a kid to a player, why automatically go to a HoFer or borderline HoFer?

So people actually know who they're talking about.
   10. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4065630)
So who's more overrated: Alonso (33) or Gose (39)? I think both are at least 30 places too high, maybe more like 40 or 50.
   11. andrewberg Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:38 PM (#4065632)
What NJ said, plus that is what sticks in the memory. If you see a guy with good composure, that skill doesnt remind you of, say, Kevin Tapani. You think of the guy who has MEMORABLE composure.
   12. andrewberg Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:39 PM (#4065633)
I'd say Alonso more than Gose, because Alonso's glove isnt going to add any value. That is at least a possibility with Gose.
   13. Nasty Nate Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:50 PM (#4065645)
He should beat out golf, cheesy theme parks as Myrtle Beach’s top 2012 attraction.



But will he beat out Kenny Powers?


Locals only, you f*ckin’ grommet! Stay off my beach!
   14. Guapo Posted: February 21, 2012 at 03:54 PM (#4065650)
5 Julio Teheran rhp, Braves Age: 21. ETA: 2012.
There’s absolutely no link between his last name and Darvish’s Iranian heritage.


Well, that's a relief.
   15. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: February 21, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4065677)
Is it unusual that everybody in the top ten is projected to debut in the next two seasons? I realize the closer to MLB, the easier to observe and assess the talent, but it seems odd there is no top prospect a few years off, especially with BA's tendency towards lower level players. The great players don't spend much time in the minors, though. It could be a good sign for this crop that they are all projected to be MLB ready in less than four years.
   16. JJ1986 Posted: February 21, 2012 at 04:30 PM (#4065681)
The ETAs seem almost random. Miller is extremely likely to be in the majors this year and has a chance to break camp with the team. Montero, Moore and Trout have already arrived. Profar might be up in 2013, but I wouldn't expect him to stick until 2014.
   17. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 04:31 PM (#4065685)

Is it unusual that everybody in the top ten is projected to debut in the next two seasons? I realize the closer to MLB, the easier to observe and assess the talent, but it seems odd there is no top prospect a few years off, especially with BA's tendency towards lower level players. The great players don't spend much time in the minors, though. It could be a good sign for this crop that they are all projected to be MLB ready in less than four years.


I think some of the ETA's are extremely aggressive. Dylan Bundy, for example, has yet to throw a professional pitch and just turned 19, yet will be in the big leagues by next year?
   18. AROM Posted: February 21, 2012 at 04:42 PM (#4065697)
Is it unusual that everybody in the top ten is projected to debut in the next two seasons?


I don't think so. The top 10 includes Bundy and Bauer who were just drafted last year, and Harper drafted 2 years ago. The top ten are going to be super talented without many question marks, and players who fit that description will make it to the majors pretty quickly.
   19. Spivey Posted: February 21, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4065701)
I thought they were trying to be way too cheeky/clever in their 1 sentence blurbs.

Re: #17, someone brought that up in the chat and he stood by it. BA, at least some of their evaluators, have huge hard-ons for Dylan Bundy.
   20. Brian Posted: February 21, 2012 at 05:19 PM (#4065732)
I think the scouts are trying to draw a mental picture for people and, as pointed out above, it's more useful to do so by referencing a player people actually know. Also, sometimes players just look the same in their delivery, batting stance or just they way they move as a well-known player. I always thought of Frank Thomas when I saw Orlando Miller, a shortstop with Houston. His stance was the same and he was a mini-version of the Big Hurt. Alas, it was only in appearance as he didn't hit like him and his large frame eventually moved him off SS.
   21. Mike Emeigh Posted: February 21, 2012 at 05:39 PM (#4065751)
So who's more overrated: Alonso (33) or Gose (39)?


Gose. His strikeout rate is headed in the wrong direction as he climbs the ladder.

-- MWE
   22. zonk Posted: February 21, 2012 at 05:51 PM (#4065761)
Pretty happy to see the Cubs place 4 in the top 100 -- for a system that's supposedly long on depth, but short on top-shelf talent -- that's not half-bad... Sure - Rizzo is a recent import, but having Szczur and Baez both show up is nice.
   23. DFA Posted: February 21, 2012 at 05:54 PM (#4065763)
5. Teheran...There’s absolutely no link between his last name and Darvish’s Iranian heritage.


Is this a worse joke than Obama's State of the Union spilled milk joke?
   24. Danny Posted: February 21, 2012 at 06:12 PM (#4065767)
Ugh, why'd they have to bring up Ariel Prieto.

Because Moneyball.
   25. Walt Davis Posted: February 21, 2012 at 07:29 PM (#4065794)
Still, just say the kid has good composure, no need to bring Whitey Ford into it and, if anything, bringing Ford into it clouds the picture (if, in fact, he was a GREAT composure guy). Which brings up a problem with using Ford (less so Gooden) -- it's been 45 years since Ford took the mound. Anybody who saw Ford pitch and was mature enough at the time to make an informed judgment as to his composure has to be at least 70. I know there are some old scouts still out there but almost nobody that they're reporting to is old enough to know how composed Ford was.
   26. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 21, 2012 at 07:45 PM (#4065799)
Gose. His strikeout rate is headed in the wrong direction as he climbs the ladder.


On that note, I was pleasantly surprised that they resisted the temptation to put Villar on the list, though Callis did point to him in the chat as one of the guys who just missed the back end of it.
   27. MattAtBat Posted: February 21, 2012 at 10:54 PM (#4065871)
No love for Matt Adams? I get that he'll never sell blue jeans, but he tore up AA and hit at every stop.

I probably like Zack Cox more than most, but just looking at the Cardinals' prospects, it's hard to justify ranking Cox but not Adams.
   28. Squash Posted: February 21, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4065872)
Oh, BA...

BA will never, ever get over that Moneyball said high school players were a higher risk than college players and that scouting might be little more efficient than going purely by stats. That was f-ing with their paycheck, and they will never, ever let it go.
   29. greenback calls it soccer Posted: February 21, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4065880)
No love for Matt Adams? I get that he'll never sell blue jeans, but he tore up AA and hit at every stop.

He's a DH who put up numbers in a park where everybody except Pete Kozma hits.
   30. puck Posted: February 21, 2012 at 11:08 PM (#4065882)
24 Bubba Starling of, Royals Age: 19. ETA: 2015.
Won't even have to reach his ceiling to be baseball's best-ever Bubba (sorry, Bubba Smith).


Looks like Bubba Church and Bubba Trammell have the most WAR among Bubba's.
   31. MattAtBat Posted: February 22, 2012 at 12:57 AM (#4065909)
He's a DH who put up numbers in a park where everybody except Pete Kozma hits.


What's the argument against Adams sticking at first? I get that he's big, but we're talking about 1B. I couldn't find anything from the Goldsteins/Sickles/Laws of the world about Adams not sticking at 1B (genuinely interested if anyone finds anything). His defensive numbers seem fine.

Adams definitely plays at a launching pad for LH hitters, but Adams set the club HR record and won the league MVP last season. Even if you discount him for park factors, that's a pretty strong performance for a 22-year-old in his first trip to AA.
   32. Mark S. is bored Posted: February 22, 2012 at 01:28 AM (#4065917)
Gose. His strikeout rate is headed in the wrong direction as he climbs the ladder.


Strikeouts are a concern, but he's 20 years old with 62 BB, 16 HR and 70 SB in double A. He might never hit for contact, but with that skillset and decent defense, he could have a Mike Cameron/Chris Young type of career.
   33. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 22, 2012 at 01:44 AM (#4065922)
This Bubber may have not been an MLB-quality player, but he had a winning smile.
   34. Jim Wisinski Posted: February 22, 2012 at 01:56 AM (#4065924)
I don't know much of anything about Gose specifically but I think the big concern would be that for every minor leaguer who overcomes the poor contact rate to become a successful major league player there are lots more who flame out because they end up only being able to hit .210 instead of .250. Considering that Gose's career high in BA is only .262 he looks a lot more like a .210 guy right now. It's nice that he's young and speedy but so far his strike zone control is garbage, last year his BB/K ratio was .40, worse than Young (.44) or Cameron (.45) have managed in their major league careers.
   35. MattAtBat Posted: February 22, 2012 at 02:07 AM (#4065925)
This Bubber...


Got to love a player that starts his major league career with a 000/000/000 season and caps off his career, 15 years later, with another 000/000/000 season.
   36. Bug Selig Posted: February 22, 2012 at 01:06 PM (#4066164)
Got to love a player that starts his major league career with a 000/000/000 season and caps off his career, 15 years later, with another 000/000/000 season.


Eric Wedge would bat him 3rd.
   37. Blubaldo Jimenez (OMJ) Posted: February 22, 2012 at 01:51 PM (#4066223)
Got to love a player that starts his major league career with a 000/000/000 season and caps off his career, 15 years later, with another 000/000/000 season.


Eric Wedge would bat him 3rd.


I didn't click on the link. Was it Casey Blake? God I hate that man.

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