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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sullivan: Angels’ Trout showing why scouts live in hit-and-miss environment

and 4 out of 5 ichthyologists agree.

“That’s definitely the hardest thing to predict,” Padres General Manager Josh Byrnes said Wednesday. “College bats have been down because we’ve signed so many kids out of high school. … And it’s tough to find a slam-dunk high school prospect.”

...“You’ve got to kick yourself when you’ve (had) a chance to get a guy like that and didn’t,” Byrnes said.

Byrnes gets to kick himself in stereo. He passed on Mike Trout twice.

Then the general manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Byrnes spent the 16th and 17th selections of the 2009 draft on high school slugger Bobby Borchering and Notre Dame outfielder A.J. Pollock. The strikeout-prone Borchering has yet to escape Single-A. Pollock has hit .229 since he was promoted to the Diamondbacks on April 18, and projects as a fourth outfielder.

...“He was a cold-weather kid (with) a little stiffness to his swing,” Byrnes said. “We probably didn’t see him that much against better competition, but the mechanics of the swing were not ideal.”

Repoz Posted: May 31, 2012 at 04:50 AM | 18 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: padres, scouting

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   1. Cowboy Popup Posted: May 31, 2012 at 08:00 AM (#4143944)
Mike Trout is awesome to watch. He had an XBH a game against the Yanks and he is all sorts of fast. .218 ISO and an 80% success rate stealing bases. He's a pretty rare combination of power and speed, like if Carlos Beltran became Carlos Beltran at 20. I don't remember seeing Eric Davis play, but Trout is starting to remind me of what people on this board say about Davis too.

ZIPs projects him to finish the season with 4.7 WAR as a twenty year old, after missing the first month of the season.
   2. Rants Mulliniks Posted: May 31, 2012 at 08:24 AM (#4143955)
There was a diving catch he made the other day that the announcers raved about, but it looked to me like he took a pretty circuituous route to the ball..... Not that he's not a good OF, but there's a reason Bourjos has remained the CF.
   3. AROM Posted: May 31, 2012 at 09:09 AM (#4143982)
Don't get me wrong, I love Mike Trout, he's great at 20 and likely to get even better.

But Eric Davis, when he was healthy and at his peak, was so good in a transcendent level.

You've probably seen clips of pre-NBA basketball, anywhere from the invention of the sport to the 1940's, where a 6'4 or 6'5 player is considered a giant, the game consists of slow passes and set shots. Now put Lebron James into that game.

That's how good Davis looked from about the 2nd half of 1986 to June 1987. He was like a baseball player from 2150 coming back with the sum total of all innovations in the sport and human conditioning.
   4. Shredder Posted: May 31, 2012 at 10:57 AM (#4144080)
There was a diving catch he made the other day that the announcers raved about, but it looked to me like he took a pretty circuituous route to the ball..... Not that he's not a good OF, but there's a reason Bourjos has remained the CF.
I'm not sure that's fair. I'm obviously biased, but that ball looked to me like it was diving pretty hard. I don't think it had anything to do with misreading it or taking a bad route. It was just a tougher play than it looked.
   5. PreservedFish Posted: May 31, 2012 at 11:09 AM (#4144105)
Not that he's not a good OF, but there's a reason Bourjos has remained the CF.


Also, Bourjos is an insanely good fielder. Trout getting pushed to a corner might be the equivalent of Andy Van Slyke pushing Bonds, or Dwayne Murphy pushing Rickey.
   6. Davo Dozier Posted: May 31, 2012 at 03:42 PM (#4144424)
#3:
Eric Davis, when he was healthy and at his peak, was so good in a transcendent level.


Eric Davis started in 158 games from June 13, 1986 to July 10, 1987 (he missed time in both years with injuries). Over that time (684 PAs), he put up the following numbers:

.310/.406/.630, with 50 homers and 98 steals (in just 109 attempts). Also, for good measure: 96 walks. 127 RBIs. 154 runs scored.

   7. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: May 31, 2012 at 03:58 PM (#4144446)
.310/.406/.630, with 50 homers and 98 steals (in just 109 attempts). Also, for good measure: 96 walks. 127 RBIs. 154 runs scored.

And good defense in CF. Basically Mantle with fewer walks and a lot more steals.
   8. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: May 31, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4144458)
Also, Bourjos is an insanely good fielder.


This one. Bourjos is ridiculous.
   9. BWV 1129 Posted: May 31, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4144488)
Yeah, the dive on that play, the ball had some mean slice and sink. It was a tough play.

Trout is a very good centerfielder. My guess is that he would be in the +5-+10 range in preventing runs there over the course of a season. He is an awful centerfielder as compared to Bourjos.

As an Angel fan, I've been blessed to see CF manned by Gary Pettis, Devon White, Jim Edmonds, Darrin Erstad, and a Torii Hunter who hadn't lost as much when he first got here as people tend to assume (though obviously he was down from his peak in Minnesota). Not a one of them lights a candle to Bourjos.
   10. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 31, 2012 at 04:42 PM (#4144513)
As an Angel fan, I've been blessed to see CF manned by Gary Pettis, Devon White, Jim Edmonds, Darrin Erstad, and a Torii Hunter who hadn't lost as much when he first got here as people tend to assume (though obviously he was down from his peak in Minnesota). Not a one of them lights a candle to Bourjos.
I'll third this. I imagine watching Bourjos materialize in front of line drives he has no right catching up to was like watching Willie Mays.
   11. Jeff R., P***y Mainlander Posted: May 31, 2012 at 04:48 PM (#4144524)

Eric Davis started in 158 games from June 13, 1986 to July 10, 1987 (he missed time in both years with injuries). Over that time (684 PAs), he put up the following numbers:

.310/.406/.630, with 50 homers and 98 steals (in just 109 attempts). Also, for good measure: 96 walks. 127 RBIs. 154 runs scored.


He's the only player that I can ever remember being on the DL for bruising his internal organs.

Also, in fairness, '87 was a sillyball year, with people like Larry Sheets and Wade Boggs hitting ridiculous numbers of homers.
   12. Walt Davis Posted: May 31, 2012 at 05:02 PM (#4144557)
Not that I'm predicting such things for Trout but "in fairness" that was Davis's age 24-25 season. Trout is 20. At 20, Eric Davis hit 276/354/449 in A ball.
   13. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: May 31, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4144565)
It is unusual to bruise an internal organ. Usually if an internal organ gets damaged it's more severe than a bruise and it's more like a rupture. I could only find 2 instances through cursory searching.

RonDL White 1996 bruises kidney, goes on his eponymous list after crashing into outfield wall

Damian Rolls 2004 goes on the DL with multiple bruised organs after outfield collision with Jose Cruz Jr.

Justin Morneau 2007 bruises lung in home plate collision, does not go on DL
   14. Tippecanoe Posted: May 31, 2012 at 05:10 PM (#4144570)
Well, since it was exactly 25 years ago (yesterday), I still remember when Davis hit his third grand slam of May 1987. Davis was already 25, but his performance was so jaw-dropping that the "New Willie Mays" articles were being trotted out. No one yet fully understood that we were dealing superballs at that point in the season. If Davis could have stayed healthy there was no way Dawson (the prior New Willie Mays) would have won the MVP.

Also, happy 50th to Eric Davis (May 29).
   15. greenback calls it soccer Posted: June 01, 2012 at 12:44 AM (#4144909)
“He was a cold-weather kid (with) a little stiffness to his swing,” Byrnes said. “We probably didn’t see him that much against better competition, but the mechanics of the swing were not ideal.”

I don't pretend to be a scout, nor do I pretend to know how to project future performance off tools. That said, "poor swing mechanics" sounds like something that can be corrected in A-ball.
   16. Justin T., Director of Somethin Posted: June 01, 2012 at 01:05 AM (#4144917)
Poor swing mechanics probably make it pretty tough to tell where a kid will end up once he gets it sorted out. There are lots of kids who are in shape and could be taught to swing properly.

It's not as though Trout was picked in the 27th round or something.
   17. PreservedFish Posted: June 01, 2012 at 01:31 AM (#4144925)
That said, "poor swing mechanics" sounds like something that can be corrected in A-ball.


To me it sounds like one of the least fixable things.
   18. baudib Posted: June 01, 2012 at 04:36 AM (#4144946)
Don't get me wrong, I love Mike Trout, he's great at 20 and likely to get even better.

But Eric Davis, when he was healthy and at his peak, was so good in a transcendent level.

You've probably seen clips of pre-NBA basketball, anywhere from the invention of the sport to the 1940's, where a 6'4 or 6'5 player is considered a giant, the game consists of slow passes and set shots. Now put Lebron James into that game.

That's how good Davis looked from about the 2nd half of 1986 to June 1987. He was like a baseball player from 2150 coming back with the sum total of all innovations in the sport and human conditioning.


This +10000000000

Eric Davis had the greatest upside of any player I've ever seen, even acknowledging some flaws in his game + obvious brittleness. I still put him in the top 5 fastest baserunners I've ever seen. You would have thought he could hit 60 homers or steal 130 bases or both, and he also started stealing so many home runs with leaping catches that Bill James suggested starting a new stat for it.

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