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View Full Version : Valaika #9 on this week's Prospect Hot Sheet



OnBaseMachine
05-02-2008, 02:15 PM
No. 9 CHRIS VALAIKA, SS, REDS
Team: high Class A Sarasota (Florida State)
Age: 22
Why he's here: .500/.483/.893, 14-for-28, 7 R, 2 2B, 3 HR, 9 RBIs, 2 SO
The Scoop: Valaika probably won't continue to play shortstop exlusively as he moves up, but it is quite evident that he'll make it to the major leagues because of his bat. He's been hitting all season (.388/.402/.612) and had a five-RBI game to his credit this week. The lack of walks may be a concern, but he was able to keep the whiffs down this week with just two. He was a 2006 third-round out of UC Santa Barbara, so don't be surprised if he makes a move to Double-A before the season is over, especially if the Reds want to move Todd Frazier along.

And a Homer Bailey mentioning:

IN THE TEAM PHOTO

Partial credit goes to Louisville RHP Homer Bailey (Reds), who struck out 10 Toledo batters Wednesday in a seven-inning gem. But he served up a home run in that start, and two others in his start last Friday, meaning his 1-1, 4.85 record over 13 innings doesn't quite warrant a higher ranking. The 21-year-old flamethrower struck out 16 over his two starts, though, while walking five and allowing 11 hits.

http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospects/prospect-hot-sheet/2008/266012.html

BA will answer questions beginning at 2:30.

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2008, 02:21 PM
What the heck does Daryl Thompson have to do to make the Hot Sheet?

I ask BA the same question, hopefully they answer it. I also asking them when Jay Bruce would get called up, and two Juan Duran questions.

Benihana
05-02-2008, 02:32 PM
What the heck does Daryl Thompson have to do to make the Hot Sheet?

I ask BA the same question, hopefully they answer it. I also asking them when Jay Bruce would get called up, and two Juan Duran questions.

Yeah his omission is ridiculous. And I hope Valaika would see Chattanooga before the end of the season. I'm hoping he sees it before the end of this month. Other thoughts I had:

Looks like we picked the wrong athletic college centerfielder: Julio Borbon is tearing up High Class A, despite being a year behind Drew Stubbs and having been drafted almost a full round later. Imagine Lincecum/Scherzer/Chamberlain and Borbon instead of Stubbs and Mesoraco. However, I'll stop there, as I'm not trying to turn this into another Stubbs lamentation.

Perhaps the emergence of Max Ramirez will finally allow Texas to trade Taylor Teagarden? Saltalamacchia has been promoted to the big club, and Ramirez continues to tear up AA. All the while Gerald Laird is still the starting catcher. Oh yeah, and Texas has zero pitching. Something has got to give. Matt Maloney and Juan Francisco for Taylor Teagarden. It will probably cost more than that, but let's get something going!

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2008, 03:13 PM
One of my questions has been answered so far:

Q: Jay Bruce from Louisville asks:
How long before I'm called up to Cincinnati? The Reds need an offensive boost and Patterson is struggling.

A: Nathan Rode: A lot of people thought you should have been there to start with, myself included. It's not an outrage, though, given your age, but if you keep hitting the ball in AAA and the Reds want to contend, you'll force yourself into the lineup pretty quickly. Joey Votto has already done it. Why not you next?

dougdirt
05-02-2008, 03:21 PM
I also asked about Daryl Thompson.... hopefully we get something.

Jay Bruce
05-02-2008, 03:21 PM
Looks like we picked the wrong athletic college centerfielder: Julio Borbon is tearing up High Class A, despite being a year behind Drew Stubbs and having been drafted almost a full round later. Imagine Lincecum/Scherzer/Chamberlain and Borbon instead of Stubbs and Mesoraco. However, I'll stop there, as I'm not trying to turn this into another Stubbs lamentation.



Are you sure you're not mistaking Borbon for someone else? So far he has a 680 OPS, including a 322 OBP so far in the California League. That would be the opposite of tearing it up. In addition, he is never supposed to have any power potential, and he has never shown any propensity for taking a walk. Also, taking him would have been at the expense of either Mesoraco or Frazier. I would much rather have Stubbs than Borbon.

Benihana
05-02-2008, 03:28 PM
Are you sure you're not mistaking Borbon for someone else? So far he has a 680 OPS, including a 322 OBP so far in the California League. That would be the opposite of tearing it up. In addition, he is never supposed to have any power potential, and he has never shown any propensity for taking a walk. Also, taking him would have been at the expense of either Mesoraco or Frazier. I would much rather have Stubbs than Borbon.

I misread his stats from last week as his stats for the year. Still, it's .100 pts higer in high-A ball than what Mesoraco OPSed in rooke ball. Not to mention, he is a speedy leadoff hitter, something the Reds desperately lack. And I'd much rather have Lincecum, Scherzer, or Chamberlain than Stubbs. But I think that is beating a dead horse at this point.

Don't get me wrong, I am by no means a fan of Julio Borbon. But any idiot would take Borbon and one of those pitchers over Mesoraco and Stubbs any day of the week.

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2008, 03:44 PM
Two other Reds related questions:

Q: Tom from Cincinnati, OH asks:
How good of a prospect is Todd Frazier for the Reds?

A: Jim Shonerd: We like Frazier here, although it'll be interesting to see if the Reds will be able to find him a new defensive home. The only reason he's in Low A to begin with because there's no room for another shortstop on Sarasota. His bat is ready for more advanced competition.


Q: Jack from Dayton asks:
What is the ceiling for Chris Valaika? If not SS where will he end up?

A: Nathan Rode: He could probably play SS in the big leagues, just not every day. He would probably make the move to 2B where his bat would be his best weapon.

camisadelgolf
05-02-2008, 04:20 PM
Q: Jack from Dayton asks:
What is the ceiling for Chris Valaika? If not SS where will he end up?

A: Nathan Rode: He could probably play SS in the big leagues, just not every day. He would probably make the move to 2B where his bat would be his best weapon.
I think Valaika should be the starting second baseman in AA while Drew M. Anderson finally ends up in his inevitable utility position.

dougdirt
05-02-2008, 04:46 PM
I misread his stats from last week as his stats for the year. Still, it's .100 pts higer in high-A ball than what Mesoraco OPSed in rooke ball. Not to mention, he is a speedy leadoff hitter, something the Reds desperately lack. And I'd much rather have Lincecum, Scherzer, or Chamberlain than Stubbs. But I think that is beating a dead horse at this point.

Don't get me wrong, I am by no means a fan of Julio Borbon. But any idiot would take Borbon and one of those pitchers over Mesoraco and Stubbs any day of the week.

I really wonder how many other teams have similar things like this going on with their fans? I wish I had a penny for everytime someone would have rather had someone than anyone the Reds drafted. I would be a billionaire.

For the record, give me Stubbs or Mesoraco over Julio Borbon ten times a week. A 22 year old in the Cal League not OPSing .700? He has a weak LD% (7%) and hits the ball on the ground 64% of the time. Thats a bad hitter.

Redman15
05-02-2008, 04:57 PM
I think Valaika should be the starting second baseman in AA while Drew M. Anderson finally ends up in his inevitable utility position.

I think Valaika should be starting at SS and Turner at 2nd and Stubbs in CF.
Castro is not exactly tearing it up and IMO Valaika is as good defensively. Thats
why the Reds still have him playing SS and have not moved him to 2nd.

Superdude
05-02-2008, 05:15 PM
Not to mention, he is a speedy leadoff hitter, something the Reds desperately lack. Don't get me wrong, I am by no means a fan of Julio Borbon. But any idiot would take Borbon and one of those pitchers over Mesoraco and Stubbs any day of the week.

Borbon is not the speedy leadoff hitter we're looking for. He can't draw a walk and is basically just Corey Patterson with a little higher average and a lot less power. Unless you live in Dusty Baker's bath tub, I think you'd have a hard time finding someone who would take Borbon over Mesoraco.

Benihana
05-02-2008, 06:07 PM
I agree that Borbon is not someone I would want. In fact, I publicly stated so several times leading up to and on draft day of last year. However, Mesoraco is not someone I would want either. And my point was mainly focusing on the pitching options that were available over Stubbs (not just Lincecum.) Regardless, like I said, it's beating a dead horse at this point. The only reason it was a topic of conversation this week was after the dazzling major league debut of yet another first round pick from that year's draft (Scherzer). Seeing another 2007 first rounder on the PHS just added fuel to the fire.

Don't get me wrong- I am/was a huge Wayne supporter. That said, the last two first round picks were simply awful selections.

dougdirt
05-02-2008, 06:22 PM
I agree that Borbon is not someone I would want. In fact, I publicly stated so several times leading up to and on draft day of last year. However, Mesoraco is not someone I would want either. And my point was mainly focusing on the pitching options that were available over Stubbs (not just Lincecum.) Regardless, like I said, it's beating a dead horse at this point. The only reason it was a topic of conversation this week was after the dazzling major league debut of yet another first round pick from that year's draft (Scherzer). Seeing another 2007 first rounder on the PHS just added fuel to the fire.

Don't get me wrong- I am/was a huge Wayne supporter. That said, the last two first round picks were simply awful selections.

Let me know how awful they were in about 6 years, when we have a clue of how good/bad they actually were.

camisadelgolf
05-03-2008, 08:33 AM
I think Valaika should be starting at SS and Turner at 2nd and Stubbs in CF.
Castro is not exactly tearing it up and IMO Valaika is as good defensively. Thats
why the Reds still have him playing SS and have not moved him to 2nd.

Actually, I like that idea almost as much. A lot of people are much higher on Juan Castro than I am. For the record, I like Castro and his style of play, but I don't consider him to be much of a prospect.

Kingspoint
05-05-2008, 09:09 PM
Congratulations on player of the week honors:

Florida State League
Chris Valaika, Sarasota
.480 (12-25), 6 R, 2 2B, 0 3B, 3 HR, 6 RBI, 1 BB, 4 SO, 0 SB, .920 SLG
Valaika's lone walk of the week came on Saturday -- just his fifth of the season and first since April 16. You can't fault the shortstop, though, because why would he take pitches if he's hitting as well as he is. It's been that kind of span for Valaika, who's hit safely in every game this week to extend his streak to 13 games. Valaika began the week on the best possible note, as the DH was a perfect 5-for-5 with a home run and three runs scored. He added two more multi-hit games and two more home runs, so if Sarasota can't seem to win a game, you can hardly blame Valaika. All 16 of Valaika's extra-base hits and all five walks this season have come during night games.

gedred69
05-05-2008, 09:31 PM
Sheez, season's deep enough to see Valaika really doen't have anything left to prove in Sarasota. Stop stifing young talent, rather raise them to a level they will be challanged, rather than stagnate!

Nasty_Boy
05-05-2008, 11:10 PM
Seeing some of the young guys tear it up in A ball has me thinking what Wayne's plan might have been... Does anyone think he was looking to move EE to LF and not resign Dunn, so he could play Kepp there until Vailaka, Frazier, or Waring was ready? We have some really good young bats that don't project at the SS position. Of course Vailaka or Frazier could prove people wrong (a la Keppinger) and play a steady but not spectacular SS. Will they consider moving Joey to LF and making EE a 1st baseman? Most of these bats are more than a year away, but none of them (Vailaka, Frazier, Waring) have struggled in their short time in professional ball.

Kingspoint
05-06-2008, 03:42 AM
Who knows, Nasty, but it was a beautiful thing to watch how Krivsky managed the minor leagues. His ability at putting players in positions to succeed and increasing the quality depth of almost every position in the organization in just two years was monumental. Catching was the last item he was working to improve, and thus the attempt to use the 1st Round pick on Catching. I have no doubt that before this season would have come to an end, he would have acquired Jeff Clement from the Mariners or Laird from the Rangers, setting up the 2009 season for a playoff run. Even the signing of Paul Bako....how was Krivsky able to find these players?

He's really going to be missed.

In 40 years of watching baseball's organizations, I've never seen an improvement so far so fast as the REDS organizational depth have done in the last 4 years.

There is no way Jockety can sustain that growth. He's just not that good.

Krivsky will be missed terribly. Even though Castellini had the foresight to hire him, it's sad that Castellini did not appreciate what he accomplished. But I'm sure there was a Devil (Jockety) in his ear.

Nasty_Boy
05-06-2008, 09:59 AM
I didn't mean my question as a Wayne vs. Walt kind of thing... I'm just wondering what the plans are for the young guys if they all develop into big league caliber players. There seems to be 3-4 guys that project at 3B and EE is still a young player under the team's control. I've always thought that EE would be better served at 1st or in left, but that's not going to happen if Dunn is resigned. Would the Reds consider moving Phillips back to SS if Vailaka forces his way onto the team?

I think the answer comes down to Dunn and Edwin. If these guys are gone, you could have an infield of Votto 1B/LF, Vailaka/Phillips SS/2B, Frazier 3B/1B, Waring 3B/1B/LF... It's exciting to think about this team in 2-3 years if these guys continue to progress. You just wonder if Bob will let them develop or if he'll want to overpay for mediocre veterans.