Minor League Musings

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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Fri Sep 06, 2019 3:00 pm

There is a world of diff btw acknowledging the possibility of late season draft year fatigue and essentially dismissing July++ in the pros on that possibility. Why not just adjust expectations? For instance - Ryan Jensen walked guys during his debut. Otherwise hitters couldn't touch him, couldn't score on him, and when they did it was deaded quickly. Coming off a break between the draft and signing plus a career high workloaded extended into pro ball - probably those walks aren't a thing yet and maaaaaybe even could be called. Vaughn might still have monster periphs - haven't looked - even if fans won't find the line pretty enough or whatever
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Bertz » Fri Sep 06, 2019 6:13 pm

TomtheBombadil wrote:There is a world of diff btw acknowledging the possibility of late season draft year fatigue and essentially dismissing July++ in the pros on that possibility. Why not just adjust expectations? For instance - Ryan Jensen walked guys during his debut. Otherwise hitters couldn't touch him, couldn't score on him, and when they did it was deaded quickly. Coming off a break between the draft and signing plus a career high workloaded extended into pro ball - probably those walks aren't a thing yet and maaaaaybe even could be called. Vaughn might still have monster periphs - haven't looked - even if fans won't find the line pretty enough or whatever


Because this isn't the only factor that makes these guys' numbers unreliable

- It's SSS, as at absolute best you're looking at 2.5 months, more like 1.5 if a guy makes a deep CWS run
- The fatigue thing
- Guys from SEC are playing levels of competition well below what they're used to (which is why you shouldn't get too excited about guys who are doing awesome)
- Guys haven't gone through their first offseason/instructs yet, so there could be things wrong with them that are very fixable
- General issues with the predictive power of leagues so far from the majors

You still want guys to be good obviously, but I'm not sure there's any evidence that we actually learn much during this period.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:55 pm

Bertz wrote:Because this isn't the only factor that makes these guys' numbers unreliable

- It's SSS, as at absolute best you're looking at 2.5 months, more like 1.5 if a guy makes a deep CWS run
- The fatigue thing
- Guys from SEC are playing levels of competition well below what they're used to (which is why you shouldn't get too excited about guys who are doing awesome)
- Guys haven't gone through their first offseason/instructs yet, so there could be things wrong with them that are very fixable
- General issues with the predictive power of leagues so far from the majors

You still want guys to be good obviously, but I'm not sure there's any evidence that we actually learn much during this period.


I just don't see the rationale behind taking info out when already dealing with not enough. All of these can be accounted for oracknowledged without dismissing. Nothing will excite an org more than the highly drafted or well liked amateur that comes in and performs with the deck basically fully stacked against them and only the worst will be written off after a pro debut. You're gonna probably get a couple hundred+ PAs out of a high pick like Vaughn pretty easily, which sure is a SSS but hardly a dismissible number. From there you can acknowledge that a college guy will probably be a little older than his comp in pro ball, but he's also going to be handicapped like you mention because he's also probably coming off the most stressful year of his life both on and off the field AND many of their opponents have had pro instructs and offseasons.

I've been on this site calling future relevant DSL and AZL Cubs off of some pretty basic stats, usually less than 300 PAs too, literally for years now with lots of hits. Yeah, I can't tell you what they'll be like as MLers or even if they'll make it, but I can definitely tell you which debuts or players are worth following with confidence. This is just me doing it for fun after reading other people's stuff for years, the predictive value isn't zero at the level is what I'm getting at. Many times (like DSL ) the line isn't outright anything anyone would notice, but put into context with the info we do have and what is known about what stats are telling at these levels of ball...Anyway, even if you buy nothing about what I'm saying there's still no rational explanation for dismissing information in a situation where the outcome is easiest to predict using all the info - qualitative and quantitative

To me this idea of dismissing stats in that context is as crazy as dismissing scouting reports, bio info, and anything else you can get. Just quick glancing at 21 YO Andrew Vaughn's pro debut as a highly ranked player taken in the top 3 of the draft: he took 16 PAs in Rk ball, demolished it for the record. He then took the final 229 PAs in full season ball, most of those alllllll the way in High A (one of the two that isn't the CAL where I'd probably expect a pretty slash) when even that whole bit about the SEC kinda runs its course, and put up above league average lines in both with no issues making contact or hitting for both average amd power relative to the league. To me, that's a strong pro debut even borderline badass for getting those reps in High A. White Sox fans should be pretty damn happy with that debut even considering he's a short RH 1B because that profile didn't stop them from using a top 3 pick on the consensus top college hitter - all the info matters/devil's in the details
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Bertz » Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:48 pm

TomtheBombadil wrote:
Bertz wrote:Because this isn't the only factor that makes these guys' numbers unreliable

- It's SSS, as at absolute best you're looking at 2.5 months, more like 1.5 if a guy makes a deep CWS run
- The fatigue thing
- Guys from SEC are playing levels of competition well below what they're used to (which is why you shouldn't get too excited about guys who are doing awesome)
- Guys haven't gone through their first offseason/instructs yet, so there could be things wrong with them that are very fixable
- General issues with the predictive power of leagues so far from the majors

You still want guys to be good obviously, but I'm not sure there's any evidence that we actually learn much during this period.


I just don't see the rationale behind taking info out when already dealing with not enough. All of these can be accounted for oracknowledged without dismissing. Nothing will excite an org more than the highly drafted or well liked amateur that comes in and performs with the deck basically fully stacked against them and only the worst will be written off after a pro debut. You're gonna probably get a couple hundred+ PAs out of a high pick like Vaughn pretty easily, which sure is a SSS but hardly a dismissible number. From there you can acknowledge that a college guy will probably be a little older than his comp in pro ball, but he's also going to be handicapped like you mention because he's also probably coming off the most stressful year of his life both on and off the field AND many of their opponents have had pro instructs and offseasons.

I've been on this site calling future relevant DSL and AZL Cubs off of some pretty basic stats, usually less than 300 PAs too, literally for years now with lots of hits. Yeah, I can't tell you what they'll be like as MLers or even if they'll make it, but I can definitely tell you which debuts or players are worth following with confidence. This is just me doing it for fun after reading other people's stuff for years, the predictive value isn't zero at the level is what I'm getting at. Many times (like DSL ) the line isn't outright anything anyone would notice, but put into context with the info we do have and what is known about what stats are telling at these levels of ball...Anyway, even if you buy nothing about what I'm saying there's still no rational explanation for dismissing information in a situation where the outcome is easiest to predict using all the info - qualitative and quantitative

To me this idea of dismissing stats in that context is as crazy as dismissing scouting reports, bio info, and anything else you can get. Just quick glancing at 21 YO Andrew Vaughn's pro debut as a highly ranked player taken in the top 3 of the draft: he took 16 PAs in Rk ball, demolished it for the record. He then took the final 229 PAs in full season ball, most of those alllllll the way in High A (one of the two that isn't the CAL where I'd probably expect a pretty slash) when even that whole bit about the SEC kinda runs its course, and put up above league average lines in both with no issues making contact or hitting for both average amd power relative to the league. To me, that's a strong pro debut even borderline badass for getting those reps in High A. White Sox fans should be pretty damn happy with that debut even considering he's a short RH 1B because clearly that profile was not scary enough to override what he was doing in college - hitting for power, hitting for average, not striking out, and taking walks


Let's take Strumpf as an example of a bad debut this year. I think we'd all agree his K rate is less than ideal given that he's a college bat. How many PA's next year do you need before you completely disregard everything from this summer? Like if Strumpf is sitting at a 15% K rate on May 1st next year, will you still be couching everything with "I'm still worried. Dude had a ton of swing and miss at Eugene last summer." Because I'll be honest I'll probably be willing to throw his Eugene numbers out by tax day. Conversely, if Ademan kicks ass to open next year, he's probably gonna need to keep it up into at least June before I start buying again

It's less about throwing information out and more about weighting. I think I ranked Strumpf 9th in our system the day after the draft. If I did the same ranks today I probably wouldn't drop him more than one spot (ignoring obviously anyone else's movement). But to use Ademan as a comparison again, I think I had him 3rd or 4th at draft time (holy crap he had a 140 wrc+ at that point?!). Now? Mayyybeee 10th as a nod to his age relative to league. If 2019 production is informing 30% of my Ademan opinion, it's informing less than 10% of my Strumpf opinion.

DSL production is a great comparison. Let me first say in no uncertain terms that I really appreciate the effort you put into digging into those guys. Please keep doing what you're doing on that front. But, essentially my entire opinion on anyone that low is going to be based on their scouting report. Like pretty much nothing a bonus baby such as Ronny Quientero does prior to South Bend is gonna move the needle for me. And if there's some $100k guy killing it in the DSL, unless it's paired with an glowing scouting report it won't really register for me.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:28 am

Bertz wrote:Let's take Strumpf as an example of a bad debut this year. I think we'd all agree his K rate is less than ideal given that he's a college bat. How many PA's next year do you need before you completely disregard everything from this summer? Like if Strumpf is sitting at a 15% K rate on May 1st next year, will you still be couching everything with "I'm still worried. Dude had a ton of swing and miss at Eugene last summer." Because I'll be honest I'll probably be willing to throw his Eugene numbers out by tax day. Conversely, if Ademan kicks ass to open next year, he's probably gonna need to keep it up into at least June before I start buying again

DSL production is a great comparison. Let me first say in no uncertain terms that I really appreciate the effort you put into digging into those guys. Please keep doing what you're doing on that front. But, essentially my entire opinion on anyone that low is going to be based on their scouting report. Like pretty much nothing a bonus baby such as Ronny Quientero does prior to South Bend is gonna move the needle for me. And if there's some $100k guy killing it in the DSL, unless it's paired with an glowing scouting report it won't really register for me.


My whole thing is that I don't see the rationale in completely disregarding anything, so maybe never. Ks were part of the Strumpf package coming in. His plusses were some size, that he played a non-1B IF position well enough and had some SS experience in college, some power, some patience, and he did it for a big program in UCLA. Before anyone digs in, that looks good. I honestly haven't paid much attention to Strumpf pre or post-draft but his debut seems mostly in line with what he was in college. He hit with some power, hit the ball in the air, is still in the IF and off 1B, struck out a little above the league average outside the AZL, and took some walks. As a prospect he's more akin to last year's 2nd rounder, Herron, but as an IF swapping speed for power, for me. Both should be productive in High A hopefully beyond but neither is a prospect I'd be quick to hop on the wagon of. TBF Strumpf quicker than Herron probably, pointedfingertohead call. Ademan in AA OTOH? Probably pretty quickly if he's hitting maybe like 400+ PAs
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:50 pm

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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Tue Sep 10, 2019 11:10 pm

Missed that infinitely more succinct post at the bottom of the last page

-

https://www.mlb.com/news/mlb-pipeline-2 ... e-coverage

It's interesting they went with a C in High A, not that Campusano doesn't have a pretty clean case. He was third among all High A hitters in wRC+ this year, best among 20 YOs or younger, does everything to make you believe he should hit. Defensively he's more Contreras than Grandal, prime Cervelli, or Molina going by his reputation. Another thing to note is that he is not even the Padres' best pure C prospect as Luis Torrens blew up in AA and has long been regarded as a possible guy for his all around game

Another 'nother thing to note is that Campusano played in the Cal, probably the most hitter friendly MiL before the PCL. He doesn't control that so I'm not trying to take too much away, really clean/tight season, but DO want to prop up some Cubs guys. I checked, FanGraphs' new leaderboards are the best thing they've done and it's great, and yeah Amaya and Ademan look even better compared to peers who didn't play in the Cal. Ademan in particular surprisingly, as his season comps really well with Royce Lewis' in the FSL and there's a good case to take his. The Brewers have a young C too that is really interesting, he outhit Amaya, but I'm not about that right now. The Cubs' guys may not be winning all the big A ball level awards for prettiest slashes, but these guys are looking like quality stuff

Another 'nother thing I like about Amaya and Ademan is that both have tons of PAs already. ~1400 apiece, so if they hit next year it might be their last full season in the minors. Wouldn't be crazy if either got a cup of coffee should one mash, though with guys like Betts, Lindor, and Syndergaard available they also have to avoid being traded. They picked a pretty great strategy for that by being Cubs so there is that.

---

It's not cut and dry, mostly an ARL thing, but:

https://www.baseball-reference.com/regi ... vero001fel

https://www.baseball-reference.com/regi ... rque001bra
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Mon Sep 16, 2019 2:10 pm



Boooooooooo, I don't think the Brewers or Mets are that bad either. I'd proooooobably go with the Nats' as the worst. The Yankees' isn't so hot either, they're system is structured like the Cub' with a nominal #1 up top because he reached AA before everyone else and a bunch of far off tooled up lottery tickets pretty far away...The Red Sox have Casas but otherwise...
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Hrubes20 » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:26 pm

TomtheBombadil wrote:https://twitter.com/BaseballAmerica/status/1173318067146940416?s=20

Boooooooooo, I don't think the Brewers or Mets are that bad either. I'd proooooobably go with the Nats' as the worst. The Yankees' isn't so hot either, they're system is structured like the Cub' with a nominal #1 up top because he reached AA before everyone else and a bunch of far off tooled up lottery tickets pretty far away...The Red Sox have Casas but otherwise...


We knew BA would be the low guys on the Cubs. I'm with you on the Red Sox being bad. They are the worst farm system IMO.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Brian » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:40 pm

Not sure if this is accurate, but it appears these rankings are from before the season started.

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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Brian » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:43 pm



Haven't looked at the numbers, but kind of surprising that the 100+ MPH lefty that was unhittable for the 2nd half isn't the pitcher of the year.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:44 pm

Brian wrote:Not sure if this is accurate, but it appears these rankings are from before the season started.



It was updated at midseason, which is why I snarkily responded to that tweet.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Hrubes20 » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:49 pm

Brian wrote:

Haven't looked at the numbers, but kind of surprising that the 100+ MPH lefty that was unhittable for the 2nd half isn't the pitcher of the year.


Because he was hittable and walked a decent amount of guys the 1st half. Marquez wins 2nd Half pitcher of the year easily, if that were a thing. But Abbott had the better performance from start to finish. Always important to remember that this isn't "Best Hitting Prospect and Best Pitching Prospect" in the system, but rather who played the best (i.e. best stats).
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:59 pm

Abbott was first in the AA Southern League in IP, Ks, 4th in ERA, 2nd in K-BB%, limited line drives and generated popups as a flyball pitcher...Decent prospect too, first maybe underrated Cubs pitching prospect in a few years. Definitely these two seem a step up from when like Nick Struck won pitcher of the year
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby Hrubes20 » Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:38 pm

TomtheBombadil wrote:Abbott was first in the AA Southern League in IP, Ks, 4th in ERA, 2nd in K-BB%, limited line drives and generated popups as a flyball pitcher...Decent prospect too, first maybe underrated Cubs pitching prospect in a few years. Definitely these two seem a step up from when like Nick Struck won pitcher of the year


That list of former Cubs Minor League Pitchers of the Year is depressing.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby craig » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:13 am

TomtheBombadil wrote:Abbott was first in the AA Southern League in IP, Ks, 4th in ERA, 2nd in K-BB%, limited line drives and generated popups as a flyball pitcher...Decent prospect too, first maybe underrated Cubs pitching prospect in a few years. Definitely these two seem a step up from when like Nick Struck won pitcher of the year


Not to spin negatively, since I'm very interested in Abbott and since he was really exceptional down the stretch.

But to some extent, good prospects don't tend to be in one league long enough to lead leagues in IP, K's, or things like ERA or K-BB%. Most times if a good pitching prospect is leading his league in stuff like that, he's getting moved up to a higher league.

If Abbott was more studly, or if he'd pitched early as shockingly well as he pitched down the stretch, the Cubs wouldn't have left him there all year long.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/mj6mmbzuoe6hv ... 1.png?dl=0
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:35 am

craig wrote:
TomtheBombadil wrote:Abbott was first in the AA Southern League in IP, Ks, 4th in ERA, 2nd in K-BB%, limited line drives and generated popups as a flyball pitcher...Decent prospect too, first maybe underrated Cubs pitching prospect in a few years. Definitely these two seem a step up from when like Nick Struck won pitcher of the year


Not to spin negatively, since I'm very interested in Abbott and since he was really exceptional down the stretch.

But to some extent, good prospects don't tend to be in one league long enough to lead leagues in IP, K's, or things like ERA or K-BB%. Most times if a good pitching prospect is leading his league in stuff like that, he's getting moved up to a higher league.

If Abbott was more studly, or if he'd pitched early as shockingly well as he pitched down the stretch, the Cubs wouldn't have left him there all year long.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/mj6mmbzuoe6hv ... 1.png?dl=0


Yep. Tyson Miller would've won the award if it was based on AA performance solely. I think Abbott will struggle with AAA too unless the juiced ball goes away.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:43 am

craig wrote:Not to spin negatively, since I'm very interested in Abbott and since he was really exceptional down the stretch.

But to some extent, good prospects don't tend to be in one league long enough to lead leagues in IP, K's, or things like ERA or K-BB%. Most times if a good pitching prospect is leading his league in stuff like that, he's getting moved up to a higher league.

If Abbott was more studly, or if he'd pitched early as shockingly well as he pitched down the stretch, the Cubs wouldn't have left him there all year long.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/mj6mmbzuoe6hv ... 1.png?dl=0


I don't think there's any confusion or bother about Abbott's upside. OTOH He got to AA in less than two years, not unimpressive though a real big time college guy does it faster (still, IIRC half the time it took Miller), and did really well also impressive. Could pick it apart - ideally he's younger, taller, maybe a little leaner, a better athlete, gets more groundballs, throws harder - but for what he is...

I do take this as a real knock for Faustino Carrera, who I otherwise like and is high up the MWL boards in K, BB, and K-BB, but kinda had to be to even stay in the game
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:54 am

CaliforniaRaisin wrote:Yep. Tyson Miller would've won the award if it was based on AA performance solely. I think Abbott will struggle with AAA too unless the juiced ball goes away.


Relatively, I think Abbott will struggle less than Miller. The Southern League was pretty pitcher friendly this year, league averages at 3.67 ERA/4.03 RA9. I'm a little more willing to buy into Abbott's much larger SL sample than Miller's, especially with his much more demonstrated ability to miss pro bats.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:02 pm

http://m.mlb.com/prospects/2019

Hoerner at 48, Amaya at 91

The combo of ranking Sam Huff above Miguel Amaya without Tyler Stephenson being on this list at all is annoying to me. Huff's a good prospect but beyond raw size I don't see what he has over either Amaya or Stephenson (a better 6'4" catcher who did his hitting in AA this year).

Royce Lewis at 9...Estevan Florial at 83...Are we SURE sure sure that Ademan is not in these guys' league? I thought Lewis had his out with a AA promotion, but he struggled there too!

They did not sneak Marquez onto there, but BA seems ready to embrace him so maybe he hits their list
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Wed Sep 18, 2019 2:38 pm

TomtheBombadil wrote:http://m.mlb.com/prospects/2019

Hoerner at 48, Amaya at 91

The combo of ranking Sam Huff above Miguel Amaya without Tyler Stephenson being on this list at all is annoying to me. Huff's a good prospect but beyond raw size I don't see what he has over either Amaya or Stephenson (a better 6'4" catcher who did his hitting in AA this year).

Royce Lewis at 9...Estevan Florial at 83...Are we SURE sure sure that Ademan is not in these guys' league? I thought Lewis had his out with a AA promotion, but he struggled there too!

They did not sneak Marquez onto there, but BA seems ready to embrace him so maybe he hits their list


BA already had their end-of-season list. Hoerner was 40, Márquez 96, no Amaya.
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:41 pm

Thanks CR, forgot about that. The volatility with the High A guys is interesting, Hoerner the AA guy seems pretty consistent so far - inside the top 50 but not so high

--

More steaming hot takes on that MLB top 100:

- Not enough Isaac Paredes

- Pearson and Pache seem high at 10 and 11, still like Waters more than Pache

- Julio Rodriguez is Eloy 2.0, a little more well rounded, monster RH bat will probably open next year in High A at 19. One of the handful highest ceiling players in the minors

- DL Hall at 61 is too low! Stuff wise he can hang with any non-Gore in the minors, one of the many interesting players moving to AA next year

- Josh Jung's going to outhit alot of guys in front of him

- Heliot Ramos 188 lbs lol ok

- CJ Abrams might be my favorite prospect in baseball already, insane debut

- Sean Murphy could be higher. Billy Beane is always interesting, always. SPs outpitched relievers this year for the first time in years, something like that anyway. Right on cue the A's plan to run with one of the top C prospects in baseball, maybe the best, and two of the handful best SP prospects in baseball in 2020 after years of running retreads in front of a deep pen

- Jordan Groshans was IF Brennen Davis in the MWL before getting hurt just before Davis made his debut. Like Davis flashed an all around game with a premium frame

So many more, way too much already

---

BarryBondsJuicedForOurSins: I heard Jasson Dominguez created the great lakes while walking with his trusty blue ox, Babe.

Kiley McDaniel: Feels like the NYY prospect hype machine and latched onto a new host
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Thu Sep 26, 2019 2:22 pm

No Cubs made BA's PCL Top 20. Nico Hoerner came in at 15 on their SL Top 20:

15. Nico Hoerner, SS/2B, Tennessee (Cubs)
Age: 22. B-T: R-R. HT: 6-1. WT: 200. Drafted: Stanford, 2018 (1).

The Cubs drafted Hoerner 24th overall in 2018 but didn’t have to wait long to see a return on their investment. He reached Chicago as a September callup this season after a successful but injury-interrupted season in the Southern League.

Hoerner had no trouble jumping to Double-A in his first full pro season. He hit .300/.391/.500 in April, showing strike zone mastery and elite bat-to-ball skills before he fractured his left wrist and missed May and June. Hoerner uses an inside-out swing to deposit hits all over the field, but he can find the seats when he hunts his pitch.

Multiple evaluators used the word "grinder” to describe Hoerner, meaning that his raw tools don’t overwhelm but that his skill level and game awareness make him a winning player. He is a dependable fielder at shortstop and second base with an accurate arm, and the Cubs deployed him in 11 games in center field after he returned from the Tennessee injured list to enhance his versatility.
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TomtheBombadil
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Sep 26, 2019 2:29 pm

Thanks CR, was looking forward to these league rankings. Think the Cubs should do well
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CaliforniaRaisin
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Re: Minor League Musings

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Mon Sep 30, 2019 3:30 pm

Miguel Amaya came in at 11 on the Carolina League top 20:

11. Miguel Amaya, C, Myrtle Beach (Cubs)
Age: 20. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 185. Signed: Panama, 2015.

Amaya handled himself well as a 20-year-old in a league full of talented catchers. He continues to improve his receiving and presentation behind the plate, and he already has good patience as a hitter.

"He did a few things great,” Winston-Salem manager Justin Jirschele said. "I definitely see that the tools are there. He has a raw bat, but he’s getting an idea of the strike zone as he grows and matures.”

Scouts graded Amaya highly for his bat control and ability to hit to the big part of the field, which unfortunately for hitters is bigger at Myrtle Beach than most minor league parks. His catching remains behind his hitting, but his now-200-plus-pound frame has become more of the ideal size for a catcher. He also has good pop times between 2.01 and 2.05 seconds on throws to second base.
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