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Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
Poll ended at Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:13 pm
Duane Underwood 54%  54%  [ 20 ]
Matt Szczur 46%  46%  [ 17 ]
Total votes : 37
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 Post subject: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:13 pm 
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This is a tie-breaking run-off vote between Duane Underwood and Matt Szczur for the Cubs #14 prospect (serious votes only, please!). Please post your rationale below. The loser of the run-off vote will be the #15 prospect.

If someone convinces you that the other player should be higher, please feel free to change your vote anytime between now and Friday.

Results so far:

#1: Javier Baez
#2: Jorge Soler
#3: Albert Almora
#4: Arodys Vizcaino
#5: Dan Vogelbach
#6: Brett Jackson
#7: Juan Paniagua
#8: Christian Villanueva
#9: Dillon Maples
#10: Josh Vitters
#11: Pierce Johnson
#12: Junior Lake
#13: Jeimer Candelario


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 7:41 pm 
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I went with Szczur, mainly due to his proximity to the majors. If nothing else, we'll know in the next year or two if he's going to make the big league club. Underwood seems so far away that it's hard to get overly excited about him.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:28 pm 
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Underwood. Chance to be a #2 or #1 guy. Reportedly made strong progress in fall, and has responded well to coaching input. Can obviously top high 90's now, and can rest now in the low 90's with strikes; being so young he perhaps projects to rest more consistently at higher speeds. Speed isn't everything, but it's an awfully good start for an athletic pitcher.

Obviously Szczur is closer and has a higher chance to be a major leaguer. But as distant as Underwood is, his chance to be a really good, high-impact major leaguer may be higher than Szczur.

I like Szczur. I think he's got a chance to be a strong OBP guy who steals bases and plays a rangy CF and is a nice leadoff guy. Got a chance to become like Bourn.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:40 pm 
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Underwood for me too.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:33 pm 
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It was a tough choice between far away upside and near term usefulness. I went upside with Underwood.

Bill


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:53 pm 
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I went with Szczur, but I've been voting for him since around 8.

Sure, he struggled at the end of last season. And you have to balance age-relative-to-league with his lack of experience compared to most his age. But he's shown an ability to keep his K rate around 10%. He's shown a good walk rate. He's shown plus defense and speed. And he's supposedly got a touch of BP power he might be able to tap into. The plus-plus makeup also has to count for something.

Right now, he looks like a very good 4th OF. If he either brings his K rate down or shows some power he's an average regular. If he does both he's a borderline all-star.

Underwood is a nice prospect. But I think he's getting bonus points just because our system is so light on quality pitching prospects.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:20 pm 
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I was originally leaning Szczur here, but Underwood's ceiling is that good. Rob, I don't think it has anything to do with the lack of quality pitching prospects, but more a ceiling nod, which happens with new guys quite a bit. I really could go either way with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:34 pm 
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toonsterwu wrote:
I was originally leaning Szczur here, but Underwood's ceiling is that good. Rob, I don't think it has anything to do with the lack of quality pitching prospects, but more a ceiling nod, which happens with new guys quite a bit. I really could go either way with it.


I tend to wait on the ceiling nod until a player at least shows off the tools. Junior Lake has shown power/speed, etc... Underwood has shown velocity, but no control and not much in the way of secondary stuff IIRC. Make no mistake, I've got my eye on him next season and I think he's as good a bet as anybody in the system to make a nice leap. But the ceiling nod feels way premature.


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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:21 am 
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Underwood. Have o go with him based on ceiling. DOn't get me wrong, I do like Szczur through. I never bought into the Juan Pierre comps, but the more recent Reed Johsnon ones I do, and a healthy Reed Johnson in his prime is a valuable player to have at low cost and years of team control, even as a 4th OF.

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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:30 pm 
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Lol I vote and find out that the race is still tied.

I am not sure why, but I find myself going with the younger players in just about every vote.

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 Post subject: Re: Who is the #14 prospect (Run-Off)?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:33 pm 
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Quakers wrote:
Lol I vote and find out that the race is still tied.

I am not sure why, but I find myself going with the younger players in just about every vote.

Thats what makes it hard to do. Upside of an A ball guy versus a guy thats shown some warts after moving up, but is close now. Not a right or wrong answer. And I'll admit I don't consistently go one side over the other myself.


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