PDA

View Full Version : BA's Draft Assesment


Fungo
11-01-2004, 01:52 PM
For those interested, Baseball America has its annual Draft breakdown in its latest issue. The breakdown is in the pay-portion of the site so I posted the White Sox and a noteable mention about the Twins...

CHICAGO WHITE SOX
Best Pro Debut: LHP Ray Liotta (2) was the top pitching prospect and the ERA leader (2.54) in the Rookie-level Pioneer League. The White Sox had no reservations about sending 3B Josh Fields (1) directly to high Class A, and he justified their confidence by batting .285-7-39 in 66 games.

Best Athlete: A star quarterback at Oklahoma State, Fields set a school record for passing touchdowns (55) and a Cotton Bowl mark for passing yardage (307). LHP Wes Whisler (2) is an intriguing two-way talent. He was the Cape Cod League's top prospect in 2002—as a hitter. Chicago drafted him for his 92-93 mph fastball and his hard slider, but they also let him DH some during his pro debut.

Best Pure Hitter: The White Sox liken Fields to 2003 first-rounder Brian Anderson, describing both as tools guys who know how to play.

Best Raw Power: No Chicago draftee could put on a batting-practice show like Whisler, though his future appears to be on the mound. OF Brandon Allen (1), who had NCAA Division I-A potential as a linebacker, is very raw but can blast balls a long way.

Fastest Runner: OF Evan Tartaglia blazes from the left side of the plate to first base in 3.95 seconds.

Best Defensive Player: The White Sox thought C Donny Lucy (2) was the best defensive backstop in the draft.

Best Fastball: RHP Nick Lemon (8) doesn't always know where his heater is headed, but he hit 98 mph during the spring and 96 after signing. Chicago hopes his control (31 walks in 24 pro innings) will improve after he makes some mechanical adjustments. LHP Tyler Lumsden (1) pitches anywhere from 91-96 mph, while LHP Gio Gonzalez (1) has uncanny command of his fastball (87-90 to 94) for an 18-year-old.

Best Breaking Ball: Gonzalez has an electric curveball that's unhittable when he throws it for strikes. Liotta's out pitch is also his curve.

Most Intriguing Background: OF Kenny Williams Jr.'s (36) father is general manager of the White Sox. OF Daron Roberts' (12) dad Dave was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1972 draft and currently is a regional crosschecker for the Devil Rays. Both RHP Frank Viola Jr. (29) and C Pete Vuckovich Jr. (48) are the sons of former Cy Young Award winners.

Closest To The Majors: With Joe Crede faltering in the majors, the White Sox won't hesitate to promote Fields when he's ready. He could make his first big league appearance by the end of 2005. Gonzalez is so advanced that he'll make it much sooner than most high schoolers.

Best Late-Round Pick: Line drive-hitting INF Adam Ricks (10) hit .305 with a .411 on-base percentage in the Pioneer League, then shifted to catcher in instructional league.Ricks, who last played behind the plate in junior college, made good progress.

The One Who Got Away: Chicago signed its first 20 draft choices and lost the rights to just two. As expected, the athletic Williams opted to attend Arizona.

Assessment: The White Sox thought the strength of the draft was lefthanded pitching, and after getting a quality position player with their top pick they wanted to load up on southpaws. Mission accomplished. They began with Fields, then grabbed Lumsden, Gonzalez, Whisler and Liotta before the third round.


Minnesota Twins
Assessment: Minnesota had baseball's best draft, replenishing the talent in the game's most consistently productive system. Though other clubs wondered about the Twins' budget, they didn't sacrifice talent for signability and signed their 15 picks, including five first-rounders.

OEO Magglio
11-01-2004, 08:48 PM
Assessment: Minnesota had baseball's best draft
I'm Shocked. Well, I really love this years draft class, we had a great draft and I can't wait for some of these young arms to get through the minor leagues. Randar or anyone else do you have a scouting report on Liotta?? I knew he had a good year but I've never really seen a scouting report on him. Lumsden is very intriguing to me, I'm really interested to see how he does this upcoming year. I really like Wes and think he has a chance to be very solid. IMO as long as Gio stays healthy he's going to be something special. I hope we don't rush Fields to much, hopefully Joe can produce so a rush of Josh won't be necessary.

Joel Perez
11-02-2004, 03:04 PM
I'm interested to hear from our WSI minor league gurus on Wes Whisler...is his future best suited for the mound or on a position in the field? Sounds like BA likes his power potential after a showing in batting practice, but you can say the same about a guy like Joe Borchard too.

Also, who did the Twins draft that makes their draft more appealing than the Sox? Who did the Sox "miss" that the Twin Cities got?

Thanks.

nodiggity59
11-02-2004, 04:15 PM
I didn't think Fields was moving this quickly. I had always thought he was a mid 2006 or later. Could he really play for the Sox come July?

MarkEdward
11-02-2004, 04:57 PM
Also, who did the Twins draft that makes their draft more appealing than the Sox? Who did the Sox "miss" that the Twin Cities got?

Thanks.I for one think the Sox had the better draft. The only two Twins' draftees I regret the Sox not taking are Glen Perkins and Matt Fox. I think BA was very impressed with the fact that they signed all 15 of their first picks. Also, remember that BA tends to lean toward the toolsy/high school/scouting level of analysis, and eight of their first fifteen picks were high schoolers.

With a few exceptions (Whisler, Lucy, Lemon), I liked the Sox draft. As for which team had the best draft, I'd either go with Oakland or Kansas City (depending on what Billy Butler does, he had an excellent '04). The A's were able to sign like 19 of their first 20 picks. Huston Street should be pitching in the majors next year. And aside from Danny Putnam and Michael Rogers, each one of their first ten picks had a very good year in the minors.

LAWSfan
11-02-2004, 06:14 PM
I for one think the Sox had the better draft. The only two Twins' draftees I regret the Sox not taking are Glen Perkins and Matt Fox. I think BA was very impressed with the fact that they signed all 15 of their first picks. Also, remember that BA tends to lean toward the toolsy/high school/scouting level of analysis, and eight of their first fifteen picks were high schoolers.

With a few exceptions (Whisler, Lucy, Lemon), I liked the Sox draft. As for which team had the best draft, I'd either go with Oakland or Kansas City (depending on what Billy Butler does, he had an excellent '04). The A's were able to sign like 19 of their first 20 picks. Huston Street should be pitching in the majors next year. And aside from Danny Putnam and Michael Rogers, each one of their first ten picks had a very good year in the minors.
How can anybody judge a draft after maybe five months? Makes no sense to me. First year stats are meaningless since most are in the low minors.

I'll give one example. Back in 73 or 73 in the Appy League, there was a kid who won the Triple Crown. That kid never made it. There was a kid who had a decent year in the same league but nothing great. That kid grew up and is now in the Hall of Fame. I'm sure most people have heard of Eddie Murray? That triple crown winner? Oh what's his name?

ma-gaga
11-02-2004, 07:03 PM
How can anybody judge a draft after maybe five months? Makes no sense to me. First year stats are meaningless since most are in the low minors.

Team A drafts 15 players, signs 5 of them.
Team B drafts 15 players, signs 15 of them.

Tell me which one had the better draft? Yes, it's meaningless at the Major League level after 5 months, but Team B has 15 chances to produce an Star and Team A only has 5.

LAWSfan
11-02-2004, 07:11 PM
Team A drafts 15 players, signs 5 of them.
Team B drafts 15 players, signs 15 of them.

Tell me which one had the better draft? Yes, it's meaningless at the Major League level after 5 months, but Team B has 15 chances to produce an Star and Team A only has 5.
First of all there are things like draft and follows that could boost a team's signing rate.

Sure if a team signs 15 guys they ahve a better chance of producing a ML player than a team that signed 5. But that's like saying if I buy 100 lottery tickets I have a better chance of winning the lottery.

But why go by first year minor league numbers? Meaningless.

If team B 5 players all hit above 325 or had an ERA under 2.00 while all of Team A 15 players didn't reach the mendoza line and pitchers had ERA above 5.00 that mean that team B has better prospects? Meaningless.

ma-gaga
11-03-2004, 12:41 AM
But why go by first year minor league numbers? Meaningless.

Fine. I'm sure that Baseball America has NO CLUE what they are talking about.

:rolleyes:

LAWSfan
11-03-2004, 02:30 AM
Fine. I'm sure that Baseball America has NO CLUE what they are talking about.

:rolleyes:
Take a look at their top prospects for any team back in 94. See how many Top 3 prospects did nothing. Yeah listen to BA, they are never wrong.

Fungo
11-03-2004, 11:01 AM
But why go by first year minor league numbers? Meaningless.
I'll be the first to say the BA is not the end-all, be-all of baseball opinion, but there are quite a few writers there who's opinions I respect. That being said, the whole premise of their feature was a "Draft Report Card", so while your statement "why go by first year Minor League numbers" may be very true, what else does BA have to go by? They are a year round baseball magazine dedicated to providing information, and at this time of year, there is a bit of down-time and features like this help to get through those periods and make for some good debate.

I'll agree, it is early, but I too liked the Sox draft. I agree with MarkEdward on Lucy & Lemon, but I like Whisler. Lemon has a plus plus fastball, but has no idea where it is going and that pick IMO was a reach. Lucy, I am willing to give more time to, but with Kurt Suzuki there for the taking at the time, I didn't understand that.

Randar68
11-03-2004, 01:39 PM
Lucy, I am willing to give more time to, but with Kurt Suzuki there for the taking at the time, I didn't understand that.
Lucy was the better defensive catcher. He also only played 1 year since he was behind Ryan Garko. He'll be fine, IMO. Suzuki may end up hitting better, but Lucy is the better defensive player and he'll hit well enough, IMO.

LAWSfan
11-03-2004, 03:07 PM
I'll be the first to say the BA is not the end-all, be-all of baseball opinion, but there are quite a few writers there who's opinions I respect. That being said, the whole premise of their feature was a "Draft Report Card", so while your statement "why go by first year Minor League numbers" may be very true, what else does BA have to go by? They are a year round baseball magazine dedicated to providing information, and at this time of year, there is a bit of down-time and features like this help to get through those periods and make for some good debate.

I'll agree, it is early, but I too liked the Sox draft. I agree with MarkEdward on Lucy & Lemon, but I like Whisler. Lemon has a plus plus fastball, but has no idea where it is going and that pick IMO was a reach. Lucy, I am willing to give more time to, but with Kurt Suzuki there for the taking at the time, I didn't understand that.


I'm not saying BA shouldn't rank them. All I'm saying is don't put too much stock in them since it's so early. Why anybody would is beyond me but to each his or her own.

As for the debate about Suzuki, I'm sure there were people in 1990 that said the Braves should have drafted Todd Van Poppel instead of some kid named Chipper. Hmmm think the Braves regret that?