View Full Version : BA starts naming top 20 prospects in each league

09-21-2005, 01:03 AM
So far the Sox have a couple of representitives.

Appy League - Rookie Ball
#9 Aaron Cunningham - OF

Comments from the chat:

Q: Richard Smiley from Chicago, IL asks:
Matt -- Thanks for the excellent write-up and for doing the chat. Did Bristol's Chris Carter come close to making the list and what is your evaluation of him?
A:Matt Eddy: I had Carter ranked in the 30-35 range because he had trouble in his debut with defense at third. He’s just 18, though, and one manager I spoke with really liked his swing and thought his power was projectible. He even liked him a bit more than Cunningham. In the end, Carter’s going to have a tougher road to the bigs if he’s moved from third to first base.

Q: Jaime from Chicago, IL asks:
Did Sox lefty reliever Alex Woodson (Bristol) receive any consideration for the top 20?
A:Matt Eddy: He didn't, but teammate Logan Williamson did. His ERA was unsightly, but he posted a strong K rate as a starter, and one pitching coach really like his arm action. Also, seventh-rounder Daniel Cortes made strides during the season -- even if the overall numbers don’t reflect it. Just 18, Cortes is a sinker-slider guy who’s developing his change.

Q: Tom from Seattle asks:
Which is the real Aaron Cunningham: The guy who hit .315 with a .838 OPS in Bristol, or the guy who hit .115 and .322 OPS in two weeks at Kannapolis? What can we expect from him?
A: Matt Eddy: I think Cunningham will hit, though not everyone I spoke with shares that opinion. It’s important to note that his OBP with Bristol was buoyed by a league-leading 14 HBPs. The best-case scenario for Cunningham is as a right fielder with average tools across the board.

Pioneer League - Rookie Ball
#5 Francisco Hernandez - C
#19 Brandon Allen - 1B

Chat is later on today...

09-21-2005, 12:01 PM
.115 and .322 OPS in two weeks at Kannapolis

This is meaningless. Cunningham was a very late addition to a playoff team that won the championship. As such, he didn't start regularly and only got 26 ABs. He was promoted so the organization could take a quick look at him before the playoffs started. Then, they went with older players like Clint King.

09-21-2005, 08:21 PM
Comments from the Pioneer League chat:

Q: Bob Fett from BMB asks:
Brandon Allen started out the year on a good note thru the first 37 games he hit .282, 9 doubles and 8 home runs but then seemed to hit a wall finishing only hitting .264 with 11 doubles and 11 home runs. Which Mr. Allen can we look forward to seeing next year? Thanks!

A:Alan Matthews: Smart money says more of the same, actually. Allen is very raw. He was a two-sport star in high school and never dedicated time exclusively to baseball. That's part of why he made the cut this year. His upside is appealing, but he will require at least another 800-1,200 minor league at-bats before the White Sox will really know what they have.

Q:Sammy from Glendale Heights asks:
How much progress do you think Francisco Hernandez made this year for Great Falls. What's his upside potential?

A:Alan Matthews: It was refreshing to see Hernandez gain some confidence after a rough start in low Class A this season. He came back to the PL where he showed better poise and learned not to press so much. He's going to have to improve his plate discipline as advanced pitchers are going to set him up easily if he continues to swing at pitches out of the zone with regularity. He has nice upside, and good tools behind the plate.

09-22-2005, 12:28 AM
Glad see my personal favorite draft pick Chris Carter was mentioned by the writer as 30-35 guy. From the second I saw his name in the draft I was intrigued. Also, partly due to the fact he was our first 3 bagger taken. His high school coach had mentioned that the kid is a superstar in the making. Lets just hope he's right.

09-27-2005, 10:42 PM
BA did the Sally league today and the only Sox prospect that got mentioned was Gio at #12.

09-28-2005, 11:57 PM
BA did the Carolina League today, and 4 Sox farmhands made the list.

5. Gio
9. Broadway
11. Valido
13. Liotta

09-29-2005, 11:00 AM
Here are the snippets:

5.GIO GONZALEZ, lhp, Winston-Salem Warthogs (White Sox)Age: 19 Ht: 5-11 Wt: 180 B-T: L-L Drafted/Signed: White Sox '04 (1)

One of the youngest players in the CL, Gonzalez also was its best lefthanded pitching prospect. Few southpaws anywhere can match his combination of a low-90s fastball, hammer curveball and a much-improved changeup. Gonzalez' out pitch in the past was his curveball, but he has gained more confidence in his changeup and now throws both pitches in any count. He works quickly with clean mechanics and features an exaggerated leg kick in his delivery.

There have been durability concerns in Gonzalez's past, and those resurfaced again this year as he missed time with back and shoulder strains. He also sat out Winston-Salem's one-game playoff against Salem with shoulder discomfort.

9.LANCE BROADWAY, rhp, Winston-Salem Warthogs (White Sox)Age: 22 Ht: 6-4 Wt: 195 B-T: R-R Drafted/Signed: White Sox '05 (1)

Broadway finished the college season with a rush, and his draft stock didn't stop rising until the White Sox took him with the 15th overall selection. He was somewhat worn down after pitching 117 innings at Texas Christian, so Chicago monitored him closely and spread out his starts, giving him as many as nine days' rest. He wasn't quite the same pitcher who excelled in the spring. Though he showed good stuff, he lacked command at times, particularly with his fastball. He doesn't have an overpowering fastball, pitching at 88-91 mph, but he has excellent control of his plus-plus curveball. All three Warthogs pitchers on this list have above-average curves, but Broadway's has more velocity and a sharper break than those of Gonzalez and Ray Liotta.

Broadway could add a little more velocity if he can add more weight to his 6-foot-4, 195-pound frame. His changeup is still developing and is average at best.

11.ROBERT VALIDO, ss, Winston-Salem Warthogs (White Sox)Age: 20 Ht: 6-2 Wt: 180 B-T: R-R Drafted/Signed: White Sox '03 (4)

Several managers referred to Valido as a deserving MVP candidate, though the award went to Daigle, his teammate. "You have guys like Markakis in this league," Rivera said, "but if I could pick a guy I wanted to be at the plate with the game on the line or who the ball was going to be hit to with the game on the line, it's Valido." Known more for his glove than his bat, Valido did all the little things the right way--with the exception of being suspended for 15 games in May after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.

He was the best defender in the league, with outstanding range, soft hands and a plus arm. He makes consistent hard contact with a short, compact swing and hits to all fields with occasional gap power. He's an excellent bunter and did a better job of utilizing his speed than in years past, leading the league in steals and triples.

13.RAY LIOTTA, lhp, Winston-Salem Warthogs (White Sox)Age: 22 Ht: 6-3 Wt: 220 B-T: L-L Drafted/Signed: White Sox '04 (2)

Liotta has won two ERA titles in two years as a pro, topping the Rookie-level Pioneer League at 2.54 last year and the low Class A South Atlantic League at 2.26 in 2005. His 1.45 ERA in eight CL starts was the lowest in a prospect-laden Winston-Salem rotation that also included Gonzalez, Broadway, Daniel Haigwood and Charles Haeger. As with Gonzalez and Broadway, Liotta's best pitch is his curveball. It's a true 12-to-6 breaker with tight, downward rotation. He also has a low-90s fastball and showed improvement with his changeup, though it's still a work in progress. He's a prototypical ground ball lefty who earns comparisons to Sean Burnett, though Liotta is bigger and stronger and has a higher ceiling.

While he gets good extension, Liotta's delivery is long and not very fluid. Some scouts also questioned his conditioning and stamina. His fastball tends to flatten out, particularly as he gets deeper into games.

"The more I see him, the more I like his upside," a National League scout said. "His curveball isn't as good as Broadway's and his stuff isn't quite Gio-like, but he's one of the best lefthanders in this league."

09-29-2005, 11:21 AM
Wow, 4 of the top 13. In other words, almost a third of the top 13 prospects in the 8-team Carolina league are property of the Sox.

B'ham should rate very highly as well.

California Sox
09-29-2005, 05:13 PM
Nice things said in chat about Valido as well. If I'm not mistaken, he's playing in the Fall League, that'll be a nice test before AA.

Gio is my hero
09-29-2005, 07:05 PM
Belive it or not im a big Gio Gonzalez fan. But i think Ryan Rodriguez should have cracked the top 20. He is a excellent pitcher. He is under everyones radar hes gonna turn a few heads. Even thoguh he was out for a whole year, He should reach triple a by mid next year. Hes gonna be one to watch.

09-29-2005, 11:40 PM
Belive it or not im a big Gio Gonzalez fan.

I don't think any of us would have ever guessed.

09-30-2005, 12:45 PM
Ryan Rodriguez should have cracked the top 20.

The slow start killed him. Nice showing in the 2nd half, though.

A. Cavatica
10-06-2005, 08:27 PM
Who made it from Birmingham? Young and Jenks? I gather from the BA chat that Owens, Rogo, Sweeney, Fields, Tracey, and Haigwood didn't.

Mr. White Sox
10-06-2005, 09:10 PM
Who made it from Birmingham? Young and Jenks? I gather from the BA chat that Owens, Rogo, Sweeney, Fields, Tracey, and Haigwood didn't.

Yeah, but Chris Young was ranked fourth overall, behind only Delmon Young, Jeremy Hermida, and Jeff Francoeur. Not bad, eh?

California Sox
10-06-2005, 11:42 PM
Bmac and Brian Anderson were ranked 8 and 9 respectively in a very solid class of IL prospects.

10-16-2005, 01:03 AM
At www.warmoctobernights.com there is a top 100 minor leaguer list that is up to 80, and a new article about the white sox angels series.

10-16-2005, 01:41 AM
Here are the snippets:

Those are some damn cool names.

Gio Gonzales, Lance Broadway, Ray Liotta.

how cool would it be in a few years to have a "Broadway" or "Liotta" sox jersey?

10-31-2005, 12:51 AM
Now that I'm off my "hiatus", I'll finish this up:

Southern League - AA
4 - Chris Young
13 - Bobby Jenks

Comments from the chat (who's that cool guy that got the first question in? :smile:):

Q: Roberto Ivaldi from Chicago, IL asks:
Thanks for taking the time to chat! A couple of questions in regards to Birmingham. Were Casey Rogowski and Jerry Owens not considered for the list because of their respective ages? Also, I was very impressed by Daniel Haigwood's impactperformance during his short stint with the Barons. Was he considered? Finally, even though Ryan Sweeney doesn't have the power numbers, was he considered due to his sweet swing, excellent batting eye, and rocket arm in the outfield? Thanks!

A: First of all, and I'm sure this is something I'll be repeating a few times today, the Southern League was incredibly stacked this year, and making the top 20 list was very, very difficult. That Birmingham team you mentioned was extremely talented, probably the third-most talented team in the league, but it placed just two players in the top 20. In another league, six or seven of those guys could have made the top 20. Of the players you mentioned, Roberto, Sweeney was the closest to making it - he was one of the last cuts, actually. Managers do love his raw ability, including that beautiful swing, and his season isn't bad for a 20-year-old in the SL. He very well might develop more power down the line (and I think he will), but it's hard to put a guy who hit one homer in a top 20 of a league this deep. I'm as big a Jerry Owens fan as you'll find anywhere, and it was very encouraging to see him respond to skipping a level by winning a batting title. He and Rogowski and Haigwood are all prospects for sure, as are Josh Fields and Sean Tracey. There just wasn't room for all of them. My personal ranking of those players: Sweeney, Owens, Tracey, Fields, Rogowski, Haigwood. Just my take.

Q: K. Williams from Chicago, IL asks:
Is Chris Young truly a 5 tool outfielder? I'm not convinced that he has much of an arm in the outfield, and I question whether or not he will ever be able to hit for a high average.

A: Scouts and managers just loved everything about Chris Young this year. He does have a chance to be a legitimate five-tool guy, as his arm is at least average, and he is learning how to hit very quickly. He made a ton of adjustments from the beginning of the year, showing improved knowledge of the strike zone and an increased ability to hit breaking balls. And he plays the game the right way. Just a terrific prospect who has really improved his stock dramatically since last year.

10-31-2005, 12:57 AM
International League - AAA

8)Brandon McCarthy
9)Brian Anderson

From the chat:

Q: Dave from Kenosha, Wis. asks: What happened to Brandon McCarthy when he returned to Charlotte after his first stint -- a bad one -- with the White Sox? Did he find another pitch? He was so much better after re-joining the Sox in August.
A: Body control in his delivery. He was flying open somewhat and elveating his fastball, which he battled at times in Charlotte as well. Once his mechanics were fine-tuned, he was locating his plus fastball and his curveball again became a major weapon.

Q: aaron from boston asks:
Davies over McCarthy? It would seem that the upside on McCarthy is considerably higher, no?
A: Davies compares more to a Greg Maddux-type finesse righthander, whereas McCarthy is a power pitcher. Upside is similar, but Davies gets the nod mostly out of being more polished at this stage. Tough argument, as there is a lot to like about both.

Q: Don from Rosemont, IL asks: If you were Kenny Williams, would you take Brian Anderson over either Podsednik or Rowand as a starting outfielder next year?
A: . . . And now I'm Kenny Williams (don't tell Wally Backman). I like Anderson over either of those guys, but a lot of that has to do with the fact that I'm an Anderson apologist. Even though he's bigger and stronger than your average CF, he has the speed to play there. He just does it all, with that gamer mentality.

10-31-2005, 01:13 AM
Q: K. Williams from Chicago, IL asks:


10-31-2005, 01:16 AM

Actually that was me too. I submitted another question from Jerry R. but that one got skipped...:D: