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View Full Version : John Fay's article today-- 2002 draft the Reds could have had.....?????



redsfan4445
09-23-2007, 11:01 AM
Per John Fay's article..

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070923/COL09/709230406/1082/SPT


"Never draft for need: In 2002, the Reds were set on drafting a pitcher. But they brought in a chubby first baseman for a workout anyway. He sprayed line drives around the park and showed great power. The Reds drafted Chris Gruler third overall that year. The first baseman went seventh to Milwaukee. His name? Prince Fielder."


What I am shocked about, yes knowing we could have had him, but knowing Griffey Jr was around him when he was young, you think his name would have came up and maybe Jr could have said to the Reds front office: YES draft him!!

amazing how many good players this organization i the past let slip away: Prince Fielder, Derek Jeter to name two!!

Phhhl
09-23-2007, 02:06 PM
It's so easy to do that. I remember when Fielder was drafted, and it was no deep, dark secret that he was a great prospect. I am sure the Reds liked him just fine. But, this organization ALWAYS needs pitching, and nobody knew at that time that Gruler was going to blow his arm out. Johnny Bench himself said Gruler's curve ball was better than Tom Seaver's, so you really can't hang that choice on the front office.

Matt700wlw
09-23-2007, 02:12 PM
They could have had Jeter at one point too....









Oops.

edabbs44
09-23-2007, 02:13 PM
Gruler was ranked 7th overall by BA and Fielder was 24th. It's not like they passed up the #1 ranked guy overall for a guy ranked 50th.

alexad
09-23-2007, 02:32 PM
IT is always about "WHAT IF'S" Like what if last year, the Reds went out to the West Coast and did not fall flat on their face, them maybe they could have been the team to make the playoffs and win the World Series.

Every team has a list of What IF. What about the other 6 teams who did not draft Prince, are they possibly saying the same thing?

redsmetz
09-23-2007, 02:32 PM
They could have had Jeter at one point too....

Every major league club passed on Albert Pujols 13-14 times.

Matt700wlw
09-23-2007, 02:36 PM
Every major league club passed on Albert Pujols 13-14 times.

True as well.


Dummies :D

alexad
09-23-2007, 02:39 PM
I hope there are a number of teams that will say the same thing about Bruce in a few years.

KronoRed
09-23-2007, 02:48 PM
I love that a lot of these "THEY SHOULD HAVE DRAFTED SUCH AND SUCH" articles are always about an offensive player..as if offense is why this team has stunk for 8 years.

cincinnati chili
09-23-2007, 02:55 PM
The Brewers went against the conventional wisdom picking up Fielder, mostly due to his weight issues.

That still doesn't excuse the drafting of Gruler. Rarely if ever do high school pitchers or college relievers warrant 7-figure bonuses.

Matt700wlw
09-23-2007, 03:01 PM
That still doesn't excuse the drafting of Gruler. Rarely if ever do high school pitchers or college relievers warrant 7-figure bonuses.

Well, let's hope Homer Bailey doesn't follow that rule...

M2
09-23-2007, 03:04 PM
There's a dozen "what if" guys you could choose from the 2002 draft instead of Gruler. The two who got the most play around here at the time were Scott Kazmir and Jeff Francis. That Chris Gruler was ginned up to be something he wasn't when the Reds picked was fairly common knowledge at the time.

redsmetz
09-23-2007, 03:08 PM
Draft history is why the thought of letting Dunn walk and taking draft picks is so inane. Baseball drafts are such a roll of the dice - it's not like it is in the NFL or NBA. It's an extremely rare player who makes an immediate impact for the drafting club. If you look at the list of 1st round picks for each team, it's fraught with failure.

dougdirt
09-23-2007, 03:17 PM
The Brewers went against the conventional wisdom picking up Fielder, mostly due to his weight issues.

That still doesn't excuse the drafting of Gruler. Rarely if ever do high school pitchers or college relievers warrant 7-figure bonuses.

Since 2002, there have been plenty of high school pitchers worth their signing bonus.

2002
Zack Greinke
Jeff Francis
Scott Kazmir
Cole Hamels
Matt Cain

2003
Chad Billingsley

2004 (these guys are barely 21 years old right now, but I bet the Reds and the Yankees are enjoying their money well spent right now)
Homer Bailey
Phil Hughes

Sure, there were some flops in there.... but there were flops for college pitchers, hitters, relievers, everything. Thats how the MLB draft is.

cincinnati chili
09-23-2007, 04:24 PM
Doug:

I haven't done the research in a few years, but last time I checked high schoolers with 7-figure bonuses have a significantly higher failure rate than college and juco guys. In other words, I think your examples are exceptions, rather than the rule. Josh Beckett is another good recent exception.

If I were GM, and the scouting director wanted to blow a first round pick on a high school arm, he'd have to be pretty convincing.

And I disagree about Bailey. More than likely, I still say he turns out to be a below-average major league pitcher. I'm less convinced of that than I was a couple years ago, but it's much too premature for the Reds to proclaim success.

dougdirt
09-23-2007, 04:51 PM
CC,
If you look at more recent history, then the college/HS pitching argument doesn't work. The success rate is within 3% of eachother. Its when you start looking to pre 1998 that the college/HS argument really works, but things have changed significantly in development of high school arms since then.

We can disagree about Bailey. I think the Reds are feeling pretty good with that pick right now. When he has been healthy, he has been pretty good this year.... albeit it has just been 23.2 innings of healthy baseball, but it has been good stuff with a 3.42 ERA, 0 HR and just 17 hits allowed.

The_jbh
09-23-2007, 05:11 PM
hindsight is 20/20 when it comes to the baseball draft. No one is a sure bet at the time

flyer85
09-23-2007, 05:21 PM
they passed on Kazmir and it was all about the money(Leatherpants said it wasn't ... but more than a few lies have passed his lips).

It would probably have taken another $1M+ to sign Kazmir and it would have blown what little budget the Reds had.

cincinnati chili
09-23-2007, 06:10 PM
CC,
If you look at more recent history, then the college/HS pitching argument doesn't work. The success rate is within 3% of eachother. Its when you start looking to pre 1998 that the college/HS argument really works, but things have changed significantly in development of high school arms since then.



That's interesting. It wouldn't surprise me if scouting/medical knowledge have improved to the point that the gap has closed substantially. I will say that I'm skeptical of the 3%. Do you know the methodology they used to come up with this number?

I ask, because I did a lot of reading around 2001-2002 and studies back then would call pitchers "successful" draft picks, even if they got released by their drafting teams and then resurfaced in the majors 8 or 10 years later.

For example, John Patterson got a $6 million bonus as a top 5 pick. He indeed had at least one great major league season (worth AT LEAST $6 million in my opinion). But he had been lost in minor league free agency before being of any use to a major league team.

Unless the data has changed DRASTICALLY in the last 5-6 years, college pitchers are significantly more likely to help the teams that drafted them prior to reaching arbitration years when they get more expensive.

I dug up a comment I wrote about Gruler in the 2002 draft thread (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=42763&postcount=42). Some of my comments need to be modified (Chris Carpenter became a Cy Young Winner, Adam Eaton became better-than-worthless). But overall, between 90-96 first round high school pitchers did very poorly.

If I were running a team, I would advocate drafting high school pitchers in quantity, rather than with the premium high $$$$ picks.

dougdirt
09-23-2007, 06:26 PM
That's interesting. It wouldn't surprise me if scouting/medical knowledge have improved to the point that the gap has closed substantially. I will say that I'm skeptical of the 3%. Do you know the methodology they used to come up with this number?
It came down to making the majors and having a specific number of innings pitched. However I don't recall the exact number of innings pitched in the major leagues.



I ask, because I did a lot of reading around 2001-2002 and studies back then would call pitchers "successful" draft picks, even if they got released by their drafting teams and then resurfaced in the majors 8 or 10 years later.

For example, John Patterson got a $6 million bonus as a top 5 pick. He indeed had at least one great major league season (worth AT LEAST $6 million in my opinion). But he had been lost in minor league free agency before being of any use to a major league team.

Unless the data has changed DRASTICALLY in the last 5-6 years, college pitchers are significantly more likely to help the teams that drafted them prior to reaching arbitration years when they get more expensive.
I think it has changed a ton in the last 5-6 years.



I dug up a comment I wrote about Gruler in the 2002 draft thread (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=42763&postcount=42). Some of my comments need to be modified (Chris Carpenter became a Cy Young Winner, Adam Eaton became better-than-worthless). But overall, between 90-96 first round high school pitchers did very poorly.
Yes, but between 1990 and 1996 teams ran young pitchers into the ground. Like I said, the development of these type of pitchers has changed dramatically since then... and the numbers are starting to get a lot closer due to high school pitchers having their arms protected now days.

IslandRed
09-23-2007, 07:24 PM
I've seen where some BP studies of more recent years have shown the gap closing between high-school and college pitchers. The argument I buy the most is the "bonuses" argument. As signing bonuses continue to go up, even outside the first round, it's less and less common to see top-shelf pitching prospects pass up the pros to play college ball. Without even getting into whether prep pitchers are better handled or how well developed college pitchers may be, the selection bias is affecting the depth of pitching coming out of the college ranks, if not necessarily at the top of the board.

Also, there are a lot of benefits to playing college ball, but I think there's an awareness now that winning is serious business and an ace pitcher always stands the risk of being dangerously overused in postseason play.

cincinnati chili
09-23-2007, 08:11 PM
It came down to making the majors and having a specific number of innings pitched.


There's an inherent flaw in that methodology because clubs tend to give bonus babies second, third, fourth, fifth, and eighteenth chances. Ideally, I think that these studies should look at WARP or win shares or something like that prior to arbitration and/or free agency. I don't really care if a guy made it to the majors, but instead care about how much he contributed.

But as for your larger point, you're probably right that I should just admit that the return on high school pitching has gotten better in recent years. I didn't like the Gruler pick in 2002, but I wasn't exactly lobbying for Kazmir either. The latter has done quite well.

M2
09-23-2007, 08:33 PM
Since 2002, there have been plenty of high school pitchers worth their signing bonus.

2002
Zack Greinke
Jeff Francis
Scott Kazmir
Cole Hamels
Matt Cain

2003
Chad Billingsley

2004 (these guys are barely 21 years old right now, but I bet the Reds and the Yankees are enjoying their money well spent right now)
Homer Bailey
Phil Hughes

Sure, there were some flops in there.... but there were flops for college pitchers, hitters, relievers, everything. Thats how the MLB draft is.

Francis was a college pitcher out of the University of British Columbia. You've probably got him mixed up with Adam Loewen.

Bailey and Hughes are at an interesting place. Do you cash in on their value via trade, thereby getting a definitive return on the signing bonus, or do you hang onto them in the hope they can deliver in the majors? My guess is the Reds will do the latter with Bailey and the Yankees will do the former with Hughes (possibly as part of the return for Johan Santana).

dougdirt
09-23-2007, 10:01 PM
Francis was a college pitcher out of the University of British Columbia. You've probably got him mixed up with Adam Loewen.
Wow... brain fart.



Bailey and Hughes are at an interesting place. Do you cash in on their value via trade, thereby getting a definitive return on the signing bonus, or do you hang onto them in the hope they can deliver in the majors? My guess is the Reds will do the latter with Bailey and the Yankees will do the former with Hughes (possibly as part of the return for Johan Santana).

That would be interesting.... I think the Reds need to hold onto Bailey, personally. I see the Yankees making a play for Santana, but I don't know if they will be able to pull the trigger when the Twins ask for Joba and Phil.