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Vote for #6 Prospect
Poll ended at Sun Dec 09, 2012 8:35 pm
Arismendy Alcantara 1%  1%  [ 1 ]
Gioskar Amaya 1%  1%  [ 1 ]
Jeimer Candelario 5%  5%  [ 6 ]
Kyuji Fujikawa 3%  3%  [ 4 ]
Brett Jackson 26%  26%  [ 35 ]
Pierce Johnson 5%  5%  [ 7 ]
Junior Lake 3%  3%  [ 4 ]
Dillon Maples 12%  12%  [ 16 ]
Juan Paniagua 23%  23%  [ 30 ]
Matt Szczur 2%  2%  [ 3 ]
Ronald Torreyes 2%  2%  [ 2 ]
Duane Underwood 1%  1%  [ 1 ]
Christian Villanueva 11%  11%  [ 15 ]
Josh Vitters 6%  6%  [ 8 ]
Total votes : 133
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 Post subject: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 8:35 pm 
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Please vote for the Cubs #6 prospect (serious votes only, please!). Please post your rationale below.

If someone convinces you that someone else should be higher, please feel free to change your vote anytime between now and Thursday.

For this vote, you should select the players you feel should be #6, #7 and #8. If we end up with multiple players having similar vote totals at the end of the voting period, there will be a run-off with just those players.

Results so far:

#1: Javier Baez
#2: Jorge Soler
#3: Albert Almora
#4: Arodys Vizcaino
#5: Dan Vogelbach


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:55 pm 
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6. Maples
7. Panigua
8. Vitters

We're getting into that mass where almost a dozen guys could defensibly go, but give me some high-upside pitching and near-MLB ready at an excrutiatingly tough-to-fill position.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 10:12 pm 
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6) Jackson
7) Johnson
8) Vitters


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 10:28 pm 
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6. Paniagua (I voted him at 5 too)
7. Pierce Johnson
8. Brett Jackson


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 10:49 pm 
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I can go either way on the next two. I'm leaning

6. Juan Paniagua - Has TOR potential, and as of now, is assumed to be more polished. It's an upside nod, but if you assume he's more polished and can move faster than the other arms he was with last year, then I think the upside wins here. The other raw arms like Underwood/Maples have a lot of work to do and are assumed to be further away. The fact that Paniagua has a good breaking ball negates any advantage Maples has on him, IMO. I just don't know if Pierce Johnson's upside is all that high. There really isn't another arm in the mix. Move to the bat side, and I'm not sure Villanueva's bat upside is enough to justify the nod here. I guess I can see an argument if you buy that he will add a bit more power, but I'm not sure. Vitters isn't really in the mix, IMO, as his upside is a bit more debatable and his defensive questions are a valid concern. No on Szczur, Alcantara, or Marco Hernandez here, leaving

7. Brett Jackson - I can buy Brett here. I was initially thinking about him at 5 (prefer Paniagua). The holes are glaring and obvious. Moreover, he might have to

a) Get a bit... for lack of a better word ... looser
b) Change his approach

It's easy to buy him not fixing this, this year, or ever. That said, he plays a solid defensive centerfield. He takes walks. Perhaps the biggest thing is this - his power is solid. If he has to move to a corner role, the power shouldn't be an issue. That's a big positive because if he can hit for enough of an average (and let's set the bar at a reasonable number ... say, .240), he can find a future in the bigs.

______

I think there's a gap after that, and I'm still debating the next guy in my head. I'll post a 3rd name now because Tim asked for it, but I still have Pierce Johnson, Arismendy Alcantara, and Christian Villanueva all lumped together. As of now, I'm leaning (sort of will go through my thought process on all three)

8. Christian Villanueva - I'm going back and forth on all three, although I have Alcantara/Villanueva a smidge ahead of Pierce Johnson. The argument for Johnson is easy - assumed to be a polished college arm, with a plus fastball, solid to good breaking ball, and a decent change (I think). I really am curious how that breaking ball shows against tougher competition, and that is the main thing holding me back for now. Mid-rotation ceiling, late inning arm potential. It's a nice package, but the other two are positional players hitting AA coming off a good year.

I was leaning Alcantara for awhile, but I'm sliding a touch over to Villanueva. I imagine I may be higher on Alcantara than most. As I've said before, it's not that I necessarily buy Alcantara. But he's going to be a 21 year old entering AA next year. He's got good tools. I know some are concerned about his lower half and whether or not he gets too big. I don't know if body-point analysis suggests the potential to add good weight growth to the frame (bad weight is a separate issue), and as of now, I think his tools now are good for short, but his consistency isn't there. It's a fair question if he can get more consistent. Offensively, a quick bat with some pop, and a decent approach makes him an interesting offensive specimen there. It's an interesting package.

For now, leaning Villanueva. I still have my doubts that his offensive ceiling is higher than Alcantara's by an appreciable amount. That said, he's more polished defensively, and he shouldn't grow out of the position. The weakness of recent and near future third base markets does admittedly play in my mind, as I wonder if we need to start valuing solid 3rd base prospects a bit more than in the past. But if he's ready to help defensively and has a decent bat, he could see time in the bigs sooner than later.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:04 pm 
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Paniagua
Lake
Maples

I probably don't have to explain much with Paniagua and Maples, but I'm higher on Lake than most. He didn't do as well as he did in 2011, but was young for the league, but despite not hitting the cover off the ball all season (balanced by a very hot month), his stats weren't imo, condemning of him as a prospect. And he's continued to do well in the DWR as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:17 pm 
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I only voted for Brett. He's close, if the swing change helps, he can possibly be a 3-4 WAR guy going forward. Of course, he can also wind up as an up and down type for the next 3-4 years too. Still, we've got no sure things. If I'm listing 7 and 8, I'm putting Villanueva at 7. Good glove, should be league average offensively. At 8, I'm putting Johnson. More info(albeit collegiate) on him and he could move quick. Leaves me with Paniagua at 9. Mainly due to the lack of info and his lack of a track record. That said, what Law has said certainly has me excited about him and I think if I had to bet on a current pitcher in our system hitting top 100 lists at this time next year, I'd bet on him. But for now, I'll still rank him lower. Need to see the stuff translate to game action.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:22 pm 
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6 Villanueva
7 Lake
8 Vitters

Villanueva seems like a good bet to reach the majors and at least be average for us; Lake's offseason/Fall/Winter have been promising.

Vitters typically struggles at transitions but will probably still be a good bat for us, and has the time to make that transition, still being quite young. Also, Vitters' struggles at the majors seemed (to me) to be tied to an aggressive approach but he showed a few flashes of patience while he was up (especially with two strikes) that make me think he'll get it sometime within the next few years.

Brett Jackson seems to be a favorite at this spot, so I feel the need to defend my leaving him off in favor of other hitters. Jackson's struggles were mechanical to the point that he changed his swing. While this has worked at times in the past (see Sandberg, Ryne), we now know very little about Jackson and his hitting potential. If the change in swing is for the better, he's absolutely number 6 here, but I feel there's just too much risk to even put him in the top ten.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:24 pm 
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If Jackson's swing change can work, he belongs in the top-4.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:36 pm 
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Not sure what the process is to get people on, but I'd argue that Marco Hernandez, Barrett Loux, Hector Rondon, Ben Wells, Logan Watkins, Alberto Cabrera are nearing the point where they should get into the conversation (considering the vote list is a pretty expansive list).


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:51 pm 
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6. Paniagua
7. Villanueva
8. Jackson


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:56 pm 
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KyleJRM wrote:
If Jackson's swing change can work, he belongs in the top-4.


I have Brett at #6 right now.

If Jackson's swing change works and cuts his Ks down significantly, you could argue him as high as our #2 prospect. I mean, assuming the changes work, you could maybe argue he's #1 if you value being close to big league ready more than future upside (Jackson has great upside, it's just not as high as Soler/Baez).

Those are huge ifs though, and he's still more likely to be bad than good, but I at least would like to hope there is a chance Brett could end up being an above average regular. I am really praying for this because it would make this season a hell of a lot more interesting if Brett could be close to a 2-3 win player.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:58 pm 
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Question:

Higher (perceived?) upside: pre-2012 Brett Jackson or present day Albert Almora?


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:02 am 
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New York Cubs Fan wrote:
Question:

Higher (perceived?) upside: pre-2012 Brett Jackson or present day Albert Almora?


Almora. I think his ceiling's being undersold. Not having any elite tools isn't the same as not having any plus tools.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:09 am 
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Yeah, I'd go Almora as well. I'd say the ceiling is GG defense, .300 hitter with 20 homer pop in CF.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:10 am 
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KyleJRM wrote:
New York Cubs Fan wrote:
Question:

Higher (perceived?) upside: pre-2012 Brett Jackson or present day Albert Almora?


Almora. I think his ceiling's being undersold. Not having any elite tools isn't the same as not having any plus tools.


Yeah, Almora is above average across the board. Brett just seems similar in that way. Almora doesn't K like Brett, but he doesn't walk like Brett either. Plus, Jackson had put up a .939 OPS to finish 2011, and was named the #32 prospect in baseball. Do you think Almora will be ranked higher than that?

Obviously now Almora is a much better prospect, as Jackson's progression fell into the worse case scenario zone in 2012.

ETA: Almora's hit tool absolutely destroys Jackson. Stating the obvious, but I'd assume that's a big part of why his ceiling is higher.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:47 am 
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Jackson's ceiling probably remains something like Jayson Werth or Nick Swisher, though the odds of reaching it aren't near what some thought it was before the year

weren't there Jim Edmonds comparisons from scouts when he was drafted?


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:56 am 
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New York Cubs Fan wrote:
Question:

Higher (perceived?) upside: pre-2012 Brett Jackson or present day Albert Almora?


If we're talking perceived, Almora because the K questions, much as I like him, were always there with Brett Jackson. Of course, there's a measure of SNTS involved there, as we really don't know what Almora will offer. But perception-wise, the K issues were always dragging Brett down.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:10 am 
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6) paniagua
7) maples
8) johnson


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:13 am 
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sneakypower wrote:
Jackson's ceiling probably remains something like Jayson Werth or Nick Swisher, though the odds of reaching it aren't near what some thought it was before the year

weren't there Jim Edmonds comparisons from scouts when he was drafted?


i think so. and i know some big chicago media person (probably sullivan) mentioned an edmonds comp after the 2011 season, because i remember one of my friends emailing me excitedly about how there was this new guy the cubs had that was going to be just like jim edmonds. it is weird to think about how there are people who realllllllllllly love the cubs but don't know anything about them that isn't spoon fed to them from either the tribune or the sun-times.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 6:49 am 
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CaliforniaRaisin wrote:
6. Paniagua (I voted him at 5 too)
7. Pierce Johnson
8. Brett Jackson

My 3 also. But flip the first 2 and leave the (voted him @5) comment.

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 Post subject: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 7:58 am 
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6. Paniagua
7. Villanueva
8. Jackson



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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 11:01 am 
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toonsterwu wrote:
New York Cubs Fan wrote:
Question:

Higher (perceived?) upside: pre-2012 Brett Jackson or present day Albert Almora?


If we're talking perceived, Almora because the K questions, much as I like him, were always there with Brett Jackson. Of course, there's a measure of SNTS involved there, as we really don't know what Almora will offer. But perception-wise, the K issues were always dragging Brett down.


What about higher ceiling, period? Not just perception-wise?

I would guess still Almora, but still asking.


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:56 pm 
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Jackson
Paniagua
Maples

Personally, I have a hard time ferreting out where the pitchers belong relative to the position players. I put Jackson at 6 and Paniagua and Maples are the first pitchers on my list.

Bill


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 Post subject: Re: Vote for #6 Prospect
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 2:04 pm 
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6. Paniagua
7. Jackson
8. Johnson


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