Saturday, April 18, 2015

Update on Some of My Favorite Prospects

Alex Verdugo -- .321
Buy his BC autos here

Bradley Zimmer - .303 - 3 HR - 5 SB
Buy his BC autos here.

David Dahl - .250 - 1 HR - 3 SB
David Dahl Ebay Listings 

Hunter Dozier - .310 - 1 HR - 5 RBI - 1 SB
Hunter Dozier Ebay Search Link 

Nomar Mazara - .367

Jorge Alfaro - 5 2B in 5 games
Jorge Alfaro Ebay Listings 

Julio Urias - 1-0 0.00 ERA 14 K 10.2 IP
Julio Urias eBAY Listings

Trevor Story - .394 - 6 XBH - 2 SB
Trevor Story eBAY Listings    

Friday, April 17, 2015

Kris Bryant's Cubs Debut (3B, Cubs)

Kris Bryant's debut was disappointing, as he went 0-for-4 with 3 strikeouts vs. James Shields of the Padres.  Here are his pitch sequences in each at bat.

Shields painted the corner with a cutter, then delivered a nasty changeup low and inside, and capped it off with a swinging strike on a changeup below the zone for the first K.

In the second at bat, Bryant was able to lay off a few close ones, but eventually swung and missed again on a low changeup.  Shields threw only 2 fastballs of the 7 pitches.

In the third at bat, Shields went to his fastball but located it well, pounding Bryant inside.  Bryant fouled off an inside changeup, and was well ahead of the pitch, only to flail at the third strike, a cutter down and away.

In his final at bat against Dale Thayer, Bryant finally saw three fastballs at about 94 mph, after the Padres put Rizzo (the tying run) on first.  On the third fastball, down and in, Bryant pulled a groundout.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Eddie Butler Scouting Report (RHP, Rockies)

Eddie Butler


Position: Pitcher
Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 2", Weight: 180 lb.
Twitter:  @Butler4Life
Draft: Drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 1st round (46th pick) of the 2012 amateur draft.
Born: 3/13/1991

Eddie Butler Stats

Eddie Butler eBay Listings

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Success Rate of the Top 100 Prospects in the MLB Over History

Thanks to a great study by Scott McKinney (here), we have a pretty good idea of how successful the Baseball America Top 100 prospects have been in the past.  McKinney uses Major League WAR to ascertain whether a prospect became a bust, a success, or a superior Major League player.

Over the history of the Top 100 Prospects List, he came to the conclusion that these were the success rates of the Top 100 Prospects of the past based on where they were ranked on the list.  A superior player is also considered a success which is why the rows add up to more than 100%.

Javier Baez Scouting Report - 2014 Review (SS, Cubs)

Javier Baez


Positions: Shortstop and Second Baseman
Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 0", Weight: 190 lb.
Twitter:  @javy23baez
Draft: Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 1st round (9th) of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from Arlington Country Day School (Jacksonville, FL).
Born: 12/1/1992

Javier Baez Stats

Javier Baez eBay Listings

Archie Bradley Scouting Report MLB Debut (RHP, Diamondbacks, 2011 Bowman Chrome Draft Autograph)

Archie Bradley


Position: Pitcher
Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 4", Weight: 230 lb.
Twitter:  @ArchieBradley7
Draft: Drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 1st round (7th) of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from Broken Arrow HS (Broken Arrow, OK).
Born: 8/10/1992

Archie Bradley Stats

Archie Bradley eBay Listings

Scouting Report:

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Prospect Pyramid - A Tool For Analyzing MLB Prospects

The Prospect Pyramid - Analyzing MLB Prospects

The Prospect Pyramid - A Tool For Analyzing MLB Prospects
The Prospect Pyramid

The Pyramid Structure

Everything a prospect is or will become is based on the foundation of his tangible tools and intangible makeup. 
This is where scouts make their bread and butter.  Tools are as simple as a 95 mph heater that has late movement or speed that ranks an 80 on the scouting scale.  Basically, tools are measurable aspects of a prospect, and they can be quantified to a certain degree.  Intangibles, on the other hand, have to do with that which cannot be quantified: for instance, how a prospect copes with pressure, bounces back from a loss, deals with the media, etc.

Tools and the intangibles are the backbone of a prospect.  They are, in essence, who the prospect is.  Built upon those tools and intangible qualities is measurable performance, known as statistics.  Statistics are a reflection of the prospect's tools and often times, they are a validation or a contradiction to the prospect's tools and intangibles.

When you mix up all those tools, intangibles, and quantifiable statistical performances, you then come to the pinnacle of the Prospect Pyramid, which is a projection into the future.  Is this prospect a future Major Leaguer?  Will he succeed at the higher levels?  Which other Major Leaguers can we compare him to?

The Analysis

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Daniel Norris Scouting Report (Blue Jays, LHP)

Daniel Norris


Position: Pitcher
Bats: Left, Throws: Left
Height: 6' 2", Weight: 195 lb.
Draft: Drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2nd round of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from Science Hill HS (Johnson City, TN).
Born: 4/25/1993

Scouting Report:

Grades: Fastball: 60. Slider: 60. Curve: 50. Changeup: 60. Control: 50.
2014 Stats (A+, AA, and AAA): 25 GS, 12-2, 2.53 ERA, 1.118 WHIP, 163 K, 43 BB, 124.1 IP

After going 3-0 with a 3.28 ERA, 29 K, and 5 BB in 24.2 IP through six Spring Training starts, Daniel Norris made the Blue Jays rotation for the start of the 2015 season.  Norris blew away hitters last year and I noticed he impressively increased his K rate after each of his promotions.  In A+ last year, Norris posted 10.31 K/9; in AA, Norris posted 12.36 K/9; and in AAA, Norris was flat out dominant striking out 15.09 batters per 9 IP.

Norris is a cool, "I take the road less traveled" type of dude, first of all.  He loves the outdoors life, lives in a 1978 Volkswagon van, surfs, sports a beard in the offseason, and took up the hobby of photography.  You wouldn't expect a 92 mph fastball with amazing late movement from this guy, but that's what you get.  You also get a professional who taught himself a new style of changeup in less than a week.  He now has one that cuts into righties (Norris throws from the left side) as well as one that fades away and sinks.  Yeah, so that 60 changeup scouting grade may be bumped up to a 70 in my opinion.

He can also throw two breaking balls, a curve and a better slider, and has good control.  He will be a mainstay atop the Blue Jays pitching staff, and his Bowman Chrome autographs are not cheap any more... but they may still be a good buy if he can get off to a hot start.

Daniel Norris Stats

Daniel Norris eBay Listings

Addison Russell Scouting Report (Cubs, SS)

Addison Russell


Position: Shortstop
Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 0", Weight: 195 lb.
Draft: Drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (11th) of the 2012 MLB June Amateur Draft from Pace HS (Pace, FL).
Born: 1/23/1994

Scouting Report:

Grades: Hit: 60. Power: 60. Speed: 55. Defense: 50. Arm: 50.
2014 Stats (A+ and AA): .295/.350/.508, 13 HR, 45 RBI, 39 Runs, 280 AB

Addison Russell missed 2 months last year after injuring his hamstring on Opening Day.  He was then traded to the Cubs in the Jeff Samardzija deal with Oakland.  But that didn't slow down Russell and he showed his potential at both the A Advanced and AA levels, despite being 4.5 years younger than the average AA player.

Russel has power to all fields and has the potential to be a .300 hitter at the major league level with his strong, yet compact swing.  His speed and power to both gaps will enable him to hit for doubles and triples, as well as steal double digit bags.  In the field, he can hold his own - he's quick, gets to balls, and has a strong and fast release with his above average arm at shortstop.

You can definitely classify Russell as a 5-tool player at a premium position.  The Cubs are loaded in the infield and Theo Epstein has made mention that Russell could be tested at second base and third base, just for good measure.  Either way, as a trade chip, or a player who qualifies at any of the infield slots, Russell is a future All Star and will be relevant for both fantasy teams and Bowman Chrome collectors.

Addison Russell Stats

Addison Russell eBay Listings

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Corey Seager Scouting Report (Dodgers, SS)

Corey Seager


Position: Shortstop
Bats: Left, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 4", Weight: 215 lb.
Draft: Drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 1st round (18th) of the 2012 MLB June Amateur Draft from Northwest Cabarrus HS (Concord, NC)
Born: 4/27/1994

Scouting Report:

Grades: Hit: 70. Power: 60. Speed: 40. Defense: 60. Arm: 60.
2014 Stats (AA and AAA): .349/.402/.602, 20 HR, 97 RBI, 89 Runs, 50 Doubles

Corey Seager, the younger brother of Kyle Seager, is a truly elite 4 tool talent of plus-plus hitting, power, fielding, and throwing abilities.  Rated by Baseball America as the best batting prospect in the California League in 2014, Seager put up some staggering numbers in the hitter-friendly league: .352 - 18 HR - 70 RBI - 327 AB.  His promotion to AA at a young age didn't stop his torrid pace, and he hit .345 there as well.

Seager's sweet left handed stroke comps to Joey Votto and Justin Morneau, and he truly hits the ball to all fields.  His heat map is blanketed in green.  Seager is a very strong kid and that's how he generates his power, with strong wrists and forearms, and a bat that stays in the zone long.  He is a middle of the order beast who is capable of a career consisting of .300-30-100 seasons, at a position that rarely sees this type of offensive production.

Seager can very well stay at shortstop, and his glove and arm play at the MLB level.  If anything, his size limits his range and he could one day move to third base, but Cal Ripken, Jr. was able to last as a big shortstop, so as of now, Seager is a SS.

With Joc Pederson and Julio Urias, you can make the argument that the Dodgers may have the best #s 1-2-3 prospects of any organization, or they are at least a close second to the Cubs.

Corey Seager Stats

Corey Seager eBay Listings

Francisco Lindor Scouting Report (Indians, SS)

Francisco Lindor


Position: Shortstop
Bats: Both, Throws: Right
Height: 5' 11", Weight: 175 lb.
Draft: Drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 1st round (8th) of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from Montverde HS (Montverde, FL)
Born: 11/14/1993

Julio Urias Scouting Report (Dodgers, LHP)

Julio Urias


Position: Pitcher
Bats: Left, Throws: Left
Height: 5' 11", Weight: 160 lb.
Draft: Signed out of Mexico by the Los Angeles Dodgers as a free agent on Aug. 23, 2012
Born: 8/12/1996