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dougdirt
09-26-2008, 05:46 PM
He asked for suggestions last week for topics to do this week and I threw Drew Stubbs into the idea box and he took it.

http://www.minorleagueball.com/2008/9/26/622709/prospect-analysis-drew-stu

Drew Stubbs was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the first round in 2006, from the University of Texas. The eight-overall pick in the draft, Stubbs showed excellent tools and a power/speed combination in college, but he also showed a propensity to strike out. Some scouts worried that his long swing might not translate well against pro pitching, but his athleticism was too much for the Reds to pass up. He hit .252/.368/.400 with 19 steals in 56 games in the Pioneer League after signing, with 32 walks but 64 strikeouts in 210 at-bats. I gave him a Grade B- in the '07 book, writing that Stubbs had a high ceiling but "is a dangerous player to grade" since he could blow up just easily as he could develop.

Stubbs spent all of 2007 with Dayton in the Midwest League, hitting .270/.364/.421, with 23 steals, 69 walks, and 142 strikeouts in 497 at-bats. He drew raves for his excellent outfield defense, but scouts remained concerned about the bat, due to a long swing and problems against breaking pitches. His overall production wasn't terrific, +13 percent OPS, but the high strikeout rate was worrisome. I left him at Grade B- in the book this year, still wondering if he would make sufficient contact against better pitching.

The Reds sent Stubbs to Sarasota in the Florida State League to begin 2008. He hit .261/.366/.406 with 27 steals in 303 at-bats, with just five homers. He did draw 50 walks, with 82 strikeouts, and continued to impress observers with excellent glovework. His performance was similar to what he did in '07, with a +10 percent OPS. Promoted to Double-A Chattanooga, he hit .315/.400/.402 in 26 games, demonstrating good plate discipline but still not much home run power. He moved up to Triple-A Lousiville in August and hit .293/.354/.480, interestingly showing more power but weaker plate discipline with the worst walk rate of his career. The Double-and Triple-A sample sizes are small, of course. Overall on the year, he hit a combined .277/.371/.417 at three levels, with 33 steals, 67 walks, and 123 strikeouts in 470 at-bats. He hit just seven homers, but knocked 33 doubles.

I suspect I will keep Stubbs at Grade B- in the 2009 book. We still have unanswered questions here. The defense and speed are going to carry forward to the majors. But strikeouts and batting average are still concerns, and it is still unclear how much home run power he's going to develop. The power spike in Triple-A is interesting, though again with a 19 game sample size it's hard to conclude that something real changed. It could just be statistical variation, though the fact that his production didn't decline is certainly a good marker.

So, can Stubbs be a regular? I think if you stuck him in the lineup in 2009, he'd hit something like .245/.325/.380, though he's steal a few bases and play great defense. Perhaps he could be something like Carlos Gomez, with a few more walks.

redhawk61
09-26-2008, 05:54 PM
He asked for suggestions last week for topics to do this week and I threw Drew Stubbs into the idea box and he took it.

http://www.minorleagueball.com/2008/9/26/622709/prospect-analysis-drew-stu

Drew Stubbs was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the first round in 2006, from the University of Texas. The eight-overall pick in the draft, Stubbs showed excellent tools and a power/speed combination in college, but he also showed a propensity to strike out. Some scouts worried that his long swing might not translate well against pro pitching, but his athleticism was too much for the Reds to pass up. He hit .252/.368/.400 with 19 steals in 56 games in the Pioneer League after signing, with 32 walks but 64 strikeouts in 210 at-bats. I gave him a Grade B- in the '07 book, writing that Stubbs had a high ceiling but "is a dangerous player to grade" since he could blow up just easily as he could develop.

Stubbs spent all of 2007 with Dayton in the Midwest League, hitting .270/.364/.421, with 23 steals, 69 walks, and 142 strikeouts in 497 at-bats. He drew raves for his excellent outfield defense, but scouts remained concerned about the bat, due to a long swing and problems against breaking pitches. His overall production wasn't terrific, +13 percent OPS, but the high strikeout rate was worrisome. I left him at Grade B- in the book this year, still wondering if he would make sufficient contact against better pitching.

The Reds sent Stubbs to Sarasota in the Florida State League to begin 2008. He hit .261/.366/.406 with 27 steals in 303 at-bats, with just five homers. He did draw 50 walks, with 82 strikeouts, and continued to impress observers with excellent glovework. His performance was similar to what he did in '07, with a +10 percent OPS. Promoted to Double-A Chattanooga, he hit .315/.400/.402 in 26 games, demonstrating good plate discipline but still not much home run power. He moved up to Triple-A Lousiville in August and hit .293/.354/.480, interestingly showing more power but weaker plate discipline with the worst walk rate of his career. The Double-and Triple-A sample sizes are small, of course. Overall on the year, he hit a combined .277/.371/.417 at three levels, with 33 steals, 67 walks, and 123 strikeouts in 470 at-bats. He hit just seven homers, but knocked 33 doubles.

I suspect I will keep Stubbs at Grade B- in the 2009 book. We still have unanswered questions here. The defense and speed are going to carry forward to the majors. But strikeouts and batting average are still concerns, and it is still unclear how much home run power he's going to develop. The power spike in Triple-A is interesting, though again with a 19 game sample size it's hard to conclude that something real changed. It could just be statistical variation, though the fact that his production didn't decline is certainly a good marker.

So, can Stubbs be a regular? I think if you stuck him in the lineup in 2009, he'd hit something like .245/.325/.380, though he's steal a few bases and play great defense. Perhaps he could be something like Carlos Gomez, with a few more walks.
That is unless he hits in front of Votto who hits in front of Holliday in '09:thumbup:

That 1-4 would be scary, Stubbs, Votto, Holliday, Bruce; Stubbs getting on then wrecking havoc on the bases, Votto moving him over, Holliday plating 2, Bruce hitting a 2 run bomb.

dougdirt
09-26-2008, 05:55 PM
I did ask Sickels if he saw Drew play this year. I am betting he hasn't.

Bip Roberts
09-26-2008, 05:56 PM
Its pretty amazing that Carlos Gomez got so much playing time this year when you look back on it.

HBP
09-26-2008, 06:07 PM
If Stubbs can still take walks and hit doubles in the majors, I could care less if he hit less than 10 HR's.

OnBaseMachine
09-26-2008, 06:09 PM
Its pretty amazing that Carlos Gomez got so much playing time this year when you look back on it.

Gomez was rushed to the majors by the Mets. Ideally he should only be in Double-A at the moment but the Mets couldn't resist rushing him. He's still got quite a way to go offensively, but defensively he's the best center fielder in the game.

Bip Roberts
09-26-2008, 06:11 PM
Yea he is amazing in center no doubt about that.

Screwball
09-26-2008, 06:15 PM
Its pretty amazing that Carlos Gomez got so much playing time this year when you look back on it.

Well I'll be, the Bipster returns! Welcome back.

Anyhoo, I think Sickels' line for Stubbs is a pretty realistic one, though I'd be tempted to up the OBP by about 15-20 points. With his solid approach, I could see him getting on base around 34% of the time or so, which wouldn't be bad at all for a rookie.

MikeS21
09-27-2008, 08:13 AM
I always thought that if Stubbs turns out to be a Mike Cameron like player, then he would help this team.

Screwball
09-28-2008, 02:19 AM
I always thought that if Stubbs turns out to be a Mike Cameron like player, then he would help this team.

I don't see how he couldn't, although most would suggest that Mike Cameron is close to Stubbs's ceiling as a Major Leaguer.

icehole3
09-28-2008, 09:13 AM
Cameron swings for the fences, Ive havent seen Stubbs in a few years but when I did he seemed to be more of a line drive hitter.

BEETTLEBUG
09-28-2008, 08:42 PM
What is wrong with a line drive hitter?

GOYA
09-29-2008, 09:17 PM
Having seen Stubbs this year at Louisville, I basically agree with that grade. But in the short time he was here, I saw improvement at the plate. His discipline was pretty good as far as not swinging at balls off the plate but he seemed to be guessing too much rather than seeing the pitch. He guessed right enough to be successful but when he guessed wrong he could look pretty bad. He's an obvious great project for Smokey. His power didn't show that often but he did hit a monster 438 foot shot. So, it's there and making it a regular part of his game will take some time. Defense/speed was first rate.

icehole3
09-30-2008, 04:07 AM
What is wrong with a line drive hitter?

nothing, I keep hearing Stubbs is like Cameron and Im wondering how is that?

camisadelgolf
09-30-2008, 04:17 AM
nothing, I keep hearing Stubbs is like Cameron and Im wondering how is that?

It's because Stubbs plays superb defense in center field, has great speed, strikes out a lot, is not expected to have a great batting average, and has power potential. Cameron didn't have many homeruns until he hit 28 in AA during his fifth year in the minors, and I think people are expecting a somewhat similar breakout from Stubbs, which could help explain the 'power potential' part of the comparison.

IslandRed
09-30-2008, 10:08 AM
I don't know if Stubbs will ever be a feared home-run hitter, but if he has frequently-used doubles power -- and his speed is such that a ball doesn't necessarily have to go to the wall to be a double -- that will probably accomplish the objective. Which is, keeping his walk rate up and thus his OBP. Prospects with walk-driven OBPs have a way of seeing the walks dry up in the majors if pitchers don't fear extra-base hits.

I'm encouraged that he maintained his numbers in a three-level season but I would still prefer to see Stubbs log plenty of time in Louisville next year. He's not a finished product.

flyer85
09-30-2008, 11:42 AM
I keep hearing Stubbs is like Cameron and Im wondering how is that?low BA, high K, high BB, good defense. The difference between the two is that Cameron had considerably more power than Stubbs has shown to this point.

GOYA
09-30-2008, 01:10 PM
It may have been an aberration at Louisville but I have to say that Stubbs is a MUCH better hitter than Cameron.

RED VAN HOT
09-30-2008, 03:05 PM
nothing, I keep hearing Stubbs is like Cameron and Im wondering how is that?

We had a lively discussion on this topic in July. Please see the URL below. The board has been fairly evenly split on Stubbs' potential, although performance at AA & AAA seems to have improved his favorables.

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=70038&page=22

flyer85
09-30-2008, 04:34 PM
but I have to say that Stubbs is a MUCH better hitter than Cameron.In his age 23 season Cameron slugged .600 in almost 500 ABs in AA. Stubbs has shown nothing close to that kind of power at any of his stops.

WIll he develop power? At this point it is anyone's guess.

GOYA
09-30-2008, 08:51 PM
In his age 23 season Cameron slugged .600 in almost 500 ABs in AA. Stubbs has shown nothing close to that kind of power at any of his stops.

WIll he develop power? At this point it is anyone's guess.

I meant for average. But you're right about the question mark regarding power. I just noticed something about Stubbs' stats that might be leading me to overrate him. I've only seen him play at Slugger Field and his stats show he LOVES Slugger Field.

AAA Home:

BA .382 - OBP .462 - SLG - .529

But he wasn't here very long. Next season will tell the tale.

camisadelgolf
10-01-2008, 02:08 AM
In his age 23 season Cameron slugged .600 in almost 500 ABs in AA. Stubbs has shown nothing close to that kind of power at any of his stops.

WIll he develop power? At this point it is anyone's guess.

I'm not attacking you, flyer85. But people tend to bring up Stubbs' age and note that he has a lack of power. I just wish more people would recognize that some players develop power at age 23, and others do it at age 28 or some other age. Drew Stubbs has a very long, thin body, and Cameron's is a bit shorter and more compact. That tells me that Stubbs' lack of a thick build will be compensated a bit by his height, but I don't think he'll ever be as muscularly-built as Mike Cameron. Still, I'm expecting somewhat similar power numbers (15-25 homerun potential) when it's all said and done.

SteelSD
10-01-2008, 03:48 AM
I'm not attacking you, flyer85. But people tend to bring up Stubbs' age and note that he has a lack of power. I just wish more people would recognize that some players develop power at age 23, and others do it at age 28 or some other age. Drew Stubbs has a very long, thin body, and Cameron's is a bit shorter and more compact. That tells me that Stubbs' lack of a thick build will be compensated a bit by his height, but I don't think he'll ever be as muscularly-built as Mike Cameron. Still, I'm expecting somewhat similar power numbers (15-25 homerun potential) when it's all said and done.

The gap between 15 to 25 Home Runs is huge. For example, Mike Cameron has averaged 23 Home Runs per 162 games during his MLB career. While playing minor league ball from age 21 to 23, Cameron averaged 1 HR every 28.7 AB. During the same age seasons, Stubbs has averaged 1 HR every 47.1 AB. Cameron's peak season during that time was a 28 HR season at age 23. That means in one minor league season through age 23, Cameron hit three more Home Runs than Stubbs has hit during his entire minor league career.

To this point, Stubbs really hasn't shown anything resembling a real manifestation of "power potential" and his current HR/AB rate has been abyssmal for a guy who allegedly has a good deal of power. And his age does matter, because the closer he gets to age-prime without actualizing a skill he allegedly has, the less cause anyone has to claim he actually has said skill. 2008 was not a step forward for him in this regard.

camisadelgolf
10-01-2008, 06:03 AM
The gap between 15 to 25 Home Runs is huge. For example, Mike Cameron has averaged 23 Home Runs per 162 games during his MLB career. While playing minor league ball from age 21 to 23, Cameron averaged 1 HR every 28.7 AB. During the same age seasons, Stubbs has averaged 1 HR every 47.1 AB. Cameron's peak season during that time was a 28 HR season at age 23. That means in one minor league season through age 23, Cameron hit three more Home Runs than Stubbs has hit during his entire minor league career.

To this point, Stubbs really hasn't shown anything resembling a real manifestation of "power potential" and his current HR/AB rate has been abyssmal for a guy who allegedly has a good deal of power. And his age does matter, because the closer he gets to age-prime without actualizing a skill he allegedly has, the less cause anyone has to claim he actually has said skill. 2008 was not a step forward for him in this regard.

I agree that there is a noteworthy difference, but I don't think it's as extreme as you paint it out to be. Just as one example, Mike Cameron has hit more than 25 homeruns only once in his ML career, so it's not like he's a perennial 30/30 threat. Another example is that Cameron had 20 homeruns through his first 423 minor league games, and Drew Stubbs has hit 25 homeruns through his first 316 games. Why does what Cameron did in the minors look more impressive than what Stubbs has done so far? It's because Cameron did it while he was two years younger, and that brings me to my main point.

My point is that Stubbs may develop power somewhat similar to Mike Cameron's, but it would be at a later age. I don't think it's fair to always judge future production based on age, level, and minor league production. Different players develop at different rates. Luis Gonzalez, for example, who was rail thin during his younger years, never hit more than 15 homeruns in the Major Leagues until he hit his 30s, when he managed to hit 232 homeruns over eight years.

Steve Finley is another example. He was a very thin, agile center fielder who never showed much power. He didn't hit more than 11 homeruns in a season until he was in his 30s, when he hit 238 homeruns over nine years.

Mike Cameron, on the other hand, has always had a more compact, thicker build than the guys I've mentioned, which means he theoretically needed less time to develop his power.

Unfortunately, we might have to wait a while (5-7 years?) to see Stubbs' power potential. He wouldn't be the first player to develop at that pace, though. If his build stays the same for the next five years, he'll be a flashy center fielder with great speed who gets on base at a high rate. If he manages to get bigger at some point (like most players do), he'll probably develop more power at a high enough rate to compensate for slowing down in the field. That is, until his mid-to-late-30s, when he might need to move to a corner outfield spot, which would mean he would have needed to develop power by then to stay as a lineup regular.

flyer85
10-01-2008, 09:40 AM
Unfortunately, we might have to wait a while (5-7 years?) to see Stubbs' power potential. I hope not, otherwise it won't be for the Reds.

who gets on base at a high rate. maybe not, without the power the walks will likely dry up.

SteelSD
10-01-2008, 11:10 AM
I agree that there is a noteworthy difference, but I don't think it's as extreme as you paint it out to be. Just as one example, Mike Cameron has hit more than 25 homeruns only once in his ML career, so it's not like he's a perennial 30/30 threat. Another example is that Cameron had 20 homeruns through his first 423 minor league games, and Drew Stubbs has hit 25 homeruns through his first 316 games. Why does what Cameron did in the minors look more impressive than what Stubbs has done so far? It's because Cameron did it while he was two years younger, and that brings me to my main point.

My point is that Stubbs may develop power somewhat similar to Mike Cameron's, but it would be at a later age.

I don't see how what Mike Cameron did at a younger age than Drew Stubbs has anything to do with Drew Stubbs.


I don't think it's fair to always judge future production based on age, level, and minor league production. Different players develop at different rates. Luis Gonzalez, for example, who was rail thin during his younger years, never hit more than 15 homeruns in the Major Leagues until he hit his 30s, when he managed to hit 232 homeruns over eight years.

Through age 23 in the minors (which is really through age 22, because Gonzalez was a full-time MLB player at age 23), Luis Gonzalez produced a minor league AB/HR rate of 1 HR per every 29.3 AB. During his age-21 and 22 seasons, that rate was 26.1. Of course, when Gonzlalez did begin his MLB career, he played his first 8 seaons in places like the Astrodome and Wrigley field; which may have more than a little bit to do with HR rate suppression.


Steve Finley is another example. He was a very thin, agile center fielder who never showed much power. He didn't hit more than 11 homeruns in a season until he was in his 30s, when he hit 238 homeruns over nine years.

Assuming that Finley's power boost wasn't um...enhanced...he's a major outlier in the data sample. I guess we can hold out hope that Stubbs will be a like outlier, but we'll lose bets all day long praying for outliers, if it means that we'll be waiting for Stubbs to develop power for his third or fourth MLB team.


Mike Cameron, on the other hand, has always had a more compact, thicker build than the guys I've mentioned, which means he theoretically needed less time to develop his power.

Unfortunately, we might have to wait a while (5-7 years?) to see Stubbs' power potential. He wouldn't be the first player to develop at that pace, though. If his build stays the same for the next five years, he'll be a flashy center fielder with great speed who gets on base at a high rate. If he manages to get bigger at some point (like most players do), he'll probably develop more power at a high enough rate to compensate for slowing down in the field. That is, until his mid-to-late-30s, when he might need to move to a corner outfield spot, which would mean he would have needed to develop power by then to stay as a lineup regular.

Excepting the 5 to 7 years later part, that sounds like a wonderful argument for a GM to make in order to talk up his player during trade negotiations.

flyer85
10-01-2008, 11:23 AM
I would say that Gonzo and Finley are two suspects high on the PED list.

dougdirt
10-01-2008, 01:00 PM
I am all about numbers, but you can watch Drew hit at times and you see the power and that just a small tweak in his swing and he could really explode with that power potential he has. Sometimes the numbers just don't tell you the likely future of a guy. Sometimes they do. In the minors, numbers mean a whole lot less as far as future production than numbers in the majors do.

flyer85
10-01-2008, 02:59 PM
anecotal evidence aside Stubbs does have something working in his favor

Look like MLB has possibly moved into a post-PED era where power is down(37HRs led the AL, lowest winning total in quite some time).

gedred69
10-01-2008, 08:10 PM
I wonder sometimes if there isn't way too much time spent evaluating and wishing about Stubbs development. Seems some are like little kids who have attached themselves to him early on, and like Peter Pan refuse to let go of childhood dreams. While others are ready to assign him to mediocrity for life. He showed some promise---in my opinion---for the 1st time this year after promotion. I choose to wait and see how he does next Spring. There are other guys who have piqued my interest a lot more at this point.......

SteelSD
10-01-2008, 11:38 PM
I am all about numbers, but you can watch Drew hit at times and you see the power and that just a small tweak in his swing and he could really explode with that power potential he has.

Yet, Stubbs significantly regressed in AB/HR rate each season he's been in the minors. In 2006, his AB per HR rate was 35.0. In 2007, it was 41.42 and in 2008 it was 67.14. I guess you could continue to claim some kind of "Sarasota" effect (and you'd be wrong), but Stubbs' AB/HR rate in Chatt and Louisville was 1 HR every 83.5 AB.

As he moves up, things are getting worse rather than better.


Sometimes the numbers just don't tell you the likely future of a guy. Sometimes they do. In the minors, numbers mean a whole lot less as far as future production than numbers in the majors do.

That certainly isn't what you were telling folks when you were writing glowing things about Jay Bruce's IsoP and the historical significance of his accomplishments at very young ages. That was a full-speed-ahead project for you.

Drew Stubbs isn't Devin Mesoraco either; a 19-20 year old project for whom we can sort of excuse his early performance due to his young age because he's purported to have a fledgling hitting skill set coupled with a projection of defensive value at a skill position. There's a bit more patience necessary with kids like that versus players who've regressed from a "power" standpoint who began professional ball at age 21 and who are soon to be 24 years old.

With someone like Drew Stubbs, a proper analysis does actually give us solid insight into "the likely future of a guy". The fact that he has a chance to be better than what's probable doesn't change that.

dougdirt
10-01-2008, 11:48 PM
Numbers schmumbers. Go watch a game.

Really though, there is a place for statistical analysis and there is a place for watching a guy play and seeing what he can do on the field. Drew is a guy that you really need to watch to see what he could become. Some guys you don't need to do that in the minors. Some guys, you really do need to do that.

Hanley Ramirez never hit more than 8 HR in a minor league season. He was younger than Drew Stubbs was, but he was never really extremely young for any level he was at. Everyone who watched him said 'you can just see the power when he hits, just give it time'. I was one that never saw him play in the minors and I thought they were crazy. Whoops. Sometimes you really do have to see these guys play to fully understand where the potential future is going to be coming from.

Drew has made a bunch of adjustments with his swing since being drafted and he is still getting used to it. Right now, he is using it to hit the ball where its pitched and mostly on line drives. In time, it wouldn't surprise me or plenty of others if he turned into a 20-25 HR type of guy.

Kc61
10-02-2008, 12:14 AM
Stubbs had a .480 slugging percentage at AAA last year in a small sample. Looking at his whole minor league career statistically, it's an open question whether he could approach that kind of extra base production as a major leaguer.

Stubbs should have a decent OBP when he gets to the show. He has consistently OBP'd over .350 in his minor league career, and last year (combined levels) it was well above that level. The combo of a solid OBP and strong centerfield defense is a good one, which bodes well for him.

Whether Stubbs can get his OPS into the .800 range as a major leaguer seems to be the question. Perhaps over time he'll accomplish that, as Doug suggests. Otherwise, he'll be a table setting centerfielder with good defense. Not a bad skill set.

SteelSD
10-02-2008, 12:21 AM
Numbers schmumbers. Go watch a game.

That single line really tells me all I need to know about you, Doug. Pity.

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 12:22 AM
That single line really tells me all I need to know about you, Doug. Pity.

That I am sarcastic? Because that line doesn't really go with anything else that I typed in my response.

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 12:27 AM
And to go further Steel, my point is/was that projection doesn't always show up in the numbers and it doesn't always show up in the stuff we see on the field. Sometimes it does though and sometimes the numbers disagree with what the guy is doing on the field and the numbers turn out to be very wrong but what we saw with the eyes turn out to be very right. Sometimes our eyes tell us something very wrong and the numbers were very right.

RedsManRick
10-02-2008, 12:28 AM
Hanley Ramirez as a comp Doug? That's right there with "Sure, (soft tossing lefty) is a soft tossing lefty. But look at Jamie Moyer!"

Yeah, Ramirez disappointed numbers wise in the minors. He was also a guy who topped the Red Sox prospect list for a few years on the basis of his obvious raw talent alone. He hit .292/.353/.480 in the majors at age 22. Stubbs will be 2 years older at best when he puts up that season in MLB and meanwhile he's striking out nearly twice as often. And he's already drawing the walks so there's not much room in his game for that power coming along side a better understanding of the strike zone and waiting for his pitch.

I understand your point. Power can develop in the majors in your mid 20's. It's a point to justify hope, no doubt. But lets not pretend like that's a reasonable expectation which merits a specific projection. You know as good as anybody that AAA is littered with great athletes with power filled bodies who never managed to actually turn it in to SLG on the diamond.

SteelSD
10-02-2008, 12:33 AM
That I am sarcastic? Because that line doesn't really go with anything else that I typed in my response.

You already know why Hanley Ramirez doesn't comp with Drew Stubbs. But you used Ramirez as an example anyway. Then you later state that "Sometimes you really do have to see these guys play to fully understand where the potential future is going to be coming from."

You weren't being sarcastic, Doug. Anything else you have to say on that note, I'd suggest you use the PM function.

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 12:37 AM
Hanley Ramirez as a comp Doug? Yeah, Ramirez disappointed numbers wise in the minors. He also hit .292/.353/.480 in the majors at age 22. Stubbs is a year older and strikes out nearly twice as often. I understand your point. Power can develop in the majors in your mid 20's. It's a point to justify hope. But lets not pretend like that's a reasonable expectation which merits a projection. You know as good as anybody that AAA is littered with great athletes with power filled bodies who never managed to actually turn it in to SLG on the diamond.

Not as a comp, but as an example that numbers don't always tell you the whole story. More as an example of, numbers can really lie and those who watched him play saw said power potential despite never hitting double digit home runs in a single minor league season. I am suggesting Drew Stubbs has power that you actually can see in person as something that could develop despite his numbers in the minors not actually suggesting he has power.

Yeah, its a could thing not a will thing. However the idea that 'things are getting worse rather than better as he moves up' is wrong in my mind because I have seen him play from Dayton to Louisville. He certainly has the potential to turn into a powerful type of player (especially for a CF) and you can see it when you watch him hit (well, scouts and at least I can see it).

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 12:46 AM
You already know why Hanley Ramirez doesn't comp with Drew Stubbs. But you used Ramirez as an example anyway. Then you later state that "Sometimes you really do have to see these guys play to fully understand where the potential future is going to be coming from."

You weren't being sarcastic, Doug. Anything else you have to say on that note, I'd suggest you use the PM function.

I think you are taking this personal and I am not sure why. Yeah, I said you might need to watch the guy play to see where his future potential may be coming from. That still has nothing to do with my initial sarcastic comment, which was indeed sarcastic. Sometimes you look at a guys numbers and then you see a guy play in person and the two things don't add up to the same player. To me, Drew Stubbs is that type of guy. I have talked to scouts, both our scouts and other teams scout. They have similar feelings on him. Who is to say which one is correct right now? No one is. You are suggesting the numbers are right. I am suggesting what people see when they watch him play is right. Thats all there really is to it. I used an example of a player who showed very little power in the minors but scouts kept saying 'its going to come, don't worry, just watch him hit' and sure enough he went from a guy who couldn't hit 10 HR in a minor league season to a guy who has now hit 80 HR over his last 3 MLB seasons.

757690
10-02-2008, 04:06 AM
With someone like Drew Stubbs, a proper analysis does actually give us solid insight into "the likely future of a guy". The fact that he has a chance to be better than what's probable doesn't change that.

I agree with your general point that the stats so far strongly point to Stubbs lacking any real power if he ever reaches the majors. However, I believe that you are missing the main point here.

For me, the main point is that stats in the minors are less accurate than major league stats in terms of giving "us solid insight into 'the likely future of a guy'." This is true for many reasons.

1) The competition is less consistent. In the majors, most of the time you are facing the best, the cream of the crop. In the minors around 2/3 of your AB's or IP are against fodder. This is the value of scouts. They watch how each player does when he is facing the other top prospects. That is what dominates their reports. If you watch a number of minor league games, you will see players who can pad their stats by crushing the other teams fodder, and visa-versa, some players who play their best against the more talented players.

2) The leagues are inconsistent. Some leagues are hitter leagues, some are pitchers leagues. In the majors, you have some parks that are hitters parks, but you don't have the American League being a hitters league and the National a pitchers league.

3) Players develop at different ages. This was the point that camisadelgolf was making. Every human is different and develops differently and at different rates, both mentally and physically. That is why it is very logical for a scout to say that a player is not hitting home runs now, but he probably will in a few years.

Players are in the minors for a reason, so that they can develop, both physically and mentally. They need to develop skills. The most common error fans make is to assume that skills are genetic, when in actuality, they are learned and acquired over time.
Ozzie Smith was furious when people said he was a natural SS. He got to be as great as he was, not just through natural ability, but through hard work. He wasn't born with his skills, he was born with an athletic body and he acquired his skills through years of hard work.

The point is that no one is born with the ability to hit homers. They are born with strong bodies, and learn the necessary skills needed to hit home runs.
Sean Casey is a perfect example. He was big enough and strong enough to hit 30-40 homers a year, but he never developed those skills and was a doubles hitter for most of his career.
Conversely, Joe Morgan was not that big, yet he learned the skills necessary to allow him to hit 20+ homers more times than Casey did, and to have more HR's per AB than Casey. Casey is 6'4" 215 and Morgan is 5'7" 160.

So, all camisadelgolf and DougDirt are saying is that Stubbs has the physical strength to hit 20-25 HR a season, but he has yet to develop the skills to do so. There is no stat in the world that can measure if, how or when a player will develop those skills.

Mark T
10-02-2008, 10:41 AM
I'm seeing Corey Patterson with a bit higher average here.

TRF
10-02-2008, 10:56 AM
Glenn Braggs had power potential. So did Jon Nunnally, and Wily Mo Pena. Samone Peters had incredible power. What? Who is Samone Peters? kinda my point.

Nobody is saying Stubbs doesn't have power potential. But comparing a college player, nearly 24 years old to Hanley Ramirez doesn't make a ton of sense. At least compare him to someone with a similar background. I loved every excuse as to why Stubbs didn't hit in the FSL, except for when he did. Stubbs DOMINATED the FSL in April, right until pitchers found the hole in his swing. And for two months after, he was abysmal. Same thing happened in Chatt, at an accelerated pace. Louisville was too small a sample size.

It's not the numbers until you need them. Just look at him or his LD%. whichever makes the case the best. I suppose we all do this in every argument for/against a player. By god, I'm still convinced Pelland is going to be a dominating LH, possibly a closer. And WMP is going to be a beast next year. Watch out for those Nats.

Once pitcher in the FSL knew how to get Stubbs out, his walks dropped like a stone in a pond. His BB rate had nothing to do with park factor.

I hope Stubbs proves me completely wrong, but I scoff at the comparison of Stubbs to Cameron. I see Stubbs ceiling as Chris Dickerson, not Cameron. Dickerson's ceiling is Cameron.

fearofpopvol1
10-02-2008, 02:01 PM
I agree that there is a noteworthy difference, but I don't think it's as extreme as you paint it out to be. Just as one example, Mike Cameron has hit more than 25 homeruns only once in his ML career, so it's not like he's a perennial 30/30 threat. Another example is that Cameron had 20 homeruns through his first 423 minor league games, and Drew Stubbs has hit 25 homeruns through his first 316 games. Why does what Cameron did in the minors look more impressive than what Stubbs has done so far? It's because Cameron did it while he was two years younger, and that brings me to my main point.

My point is that Stubbs may develop power somewhat similar to Mike Cameron's, but it would be at a later age. I don't think it's fair to always judge future production based on age, level, and minor league production. Different players develop at different rates. Luis Gonzalez, for example, who was rail thin during his younger years, never hit more than 15 homeruns in the Major Leagues until he hit his 30s, when he managed to hit 232 homeruns over eight years.

Steve Finley is another example. He was a very thin, agile center fielder who never showed much power. He didn't hit more than 11 homeruns in a season until he was in his 30s, when he hit 238 homeruns over nine years.

Mike Cameron, on the other hand, has always had a more compact, thicker build than the guys I've mentioned, which means he theoretically needed less time to develop his power.

Unfortunately, we might have to wait a while (5-7 years?) to see Stubbs' power potential. He wouldn't be the first player to develop at that pace, though. If his build stays the same for the next five years, he'll be a flashy center fielder with great speed who gets on base at a high rate. If he manages to get bigger at some point (like most players do), he'll probably develop more power at a high enough rate to compensate for slowing down in the field. That is, until his mid-to-late-30s, when he might need to move to a corner outfield spot, which would mean he would have needed to develop power by then to stay as a lineup regular.

I think the problem with the argument is that while Stubbs could definitely develop power, it's not in his favor. The examples you gave are nice, but they aren't the norm. They're far and few between. The odds are stacked against Stubbs developing that kind of power, but if he's a Red, I definitely hope he does.

kpresidente
10-02-2008, 02:19 PM
I hope Stubbs proves me completely wrong, but I scoff at the comparison of Stubbs to Cameron. I see Stubbs ceiling as Chris Dickerson, not Cameron. Dickerson's ceiling is Cameron.

Eh, Stubbs and Dickerson are the same player.

Dickerson's minor-league line:
BA - .260
OBP - .360
SLG - .415
HR% - 38.0
K/BB - 2.1
SB - 32 per 600 PA @ 76%

Stubbs's minor-league line:
BA - .269
OBP - .367
SLG - .415
HR% - 47.1
K/BB - 2.0
SB - 34 per 600 PA @ 73%

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 02:27 PM
I think the problem with the argument is that while Stubbs could definitely develop power, it's not in his favor. The examples you gave are nice, but they aren't the norm. They're far and few between. The odds are stacked against Stubbs developing that kind of power, but if he's a Red, I definitely hope he does.

I am not sure that the odds are stacked against Stubbs. He already has two of the things down pretty well. He squares the ball up often and he has the strength and bat speed. Now he just needs to get used to his swing and add just a little more loft to it.

And Stubbs and Dickerson aren't the same player. Dickerson struggled with strikeouts from age 21-26 in the minors and never showed improvement. Stubbs lowered his K rate every level from age 21-23 until he got to AAA.

fearofpopvol1
10-02-2008, 02:30 PM
I am not sure that the odds are stacked against Stubbs. He already has two of the things down pretty well. He squares the ball up often and he has the strength and bat speed. Now he just needs to get used to his swing and add just a little more loft to it.

And Stubbs and Dickerson aren't the same player. Dickerson struggled with strikeouts from age 21-26 in the minors and never showed improvement. Stubbs lowered his K rate every level from age 21-23 until he got to AAA.

The odds wouldn't be stacked against Stubbs if he could continue to use an aluminum bat, but sadly, that's not an option.

gonelong
10-02-2008, 02:32 PM
I think the problem with the argument is that while Stubbs could definitely develop power, it's not in his favor. The examples you gave are nice, but they aren't the norm. They're far and few between. The odds are stacked against Stubbs developing that kind of power, but if he's a Red, I definitely hope he does.

I think your pretty close here, but off by a hair. One guy is arguing possibilities, and the other is arguing probabilities, that much we agree on.

Where we disagree a bit, is that while the odds are stacked against a guy "like" Stubbs, they are not necessarily stacked against Stubbs specifically.

Separating the draft position from the current evaluation ... The hard part is not to identify Stubbs as one of the likely norm (not a solid MLB performer), but to identify one of the guys in the norm that is the likely outlier. Is Stubbs that guy? Possibly, but not probably.

GL

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 02:35 PM
The odds wouldn't be stacked against Stubbs if he could continue to use an aluminum bat, but sadly, that's not an option.

How many times have you seen Stubbs swing a wooden bat this year?

fearofpopvol1
10-02-2008, 03:07 PM
I think your pretty close here, but off by a hair. One guy is arguing possibilities, and the other is arguing probabilities, that much we agree on.

Where we disagree a bit, is that while the odds are stacked against a guy "like" Stubbs, they are not necessarily stacked against Stubbs specifically.

Separating the draft position from the current evaluation ... The hard part is not to identify Stubbs as one of the likely norm (not a solid MLB performer), but to identify one of the guys in the norm that is the likely outlier. Is Stubbs that guy? Possibly, but not probably.

GL

Fair enough. The comment was a generalization, but it's definitely not the norm for any player (Stubbs or not) to suddenly develop a lot more power out of nowhere. It has happened before and it could happen again (with Stubbs), but all I'm saying isn't it's not a likely outcome.


How many times have you seen Stubbs swing a wooden bat this year?

Admittedly, zero. However, I've followed him since he was drafted and I've seen his stats. While stats don't tell us everything, they sure do tell a lot. This year looked to be a step in the right direction, but he has not shown the ability to hit for any serious power (yet). Does that mean he could later? Of course. I hope he does! But that doesn't mean he will and the odds are stacked against him developing the kind of power that's been mentioned in this thread.

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 03:28 PM
Fair enough. The comment was a generalization, but it's definitely not the norm for any player (Stubbs or not) to suddenly develop a lot more power out of nowhere. It has happened before and it could happen again (with Stubbs), but all I'm saying isn't it's not a likely outcome.



Admittedly, zero. However, I've followed him since he was drafted and I've seen his stats. While stats don't tell us everything, they sure do tell a lot. This year looked to be a step in the right direction, but he has not shown the ability to hit for any serious power (yet). Does that mean he could later? Of course. I hope he does! But that doesn't mean he will and the odds are stacked against him developing the kind of power that's been mentioned in this thread.

I know what you mean. I am admittedly a numbers first guy. Still, there is something to be said by seeing someone do something with your own eyes. I may be completely wrong on this one and I know what the numbers say, but Stubbs is on the verge of hitting for some power. I can just see it in his swing. I still am not sure he hits more than 25 anytime soon, but I can see him being a 15-25 HR guy soon, which for CF, is more than enough.

RedsManRick
10-02-2008, 03:38 PM
So, all camisadelgolf and DougDirt are saying is that Stubbs has the physical strength to hit 20-25 HR a season, but he has yet to develop the skills to do so. There is no stat in the world that can measure if, how or when a player will develop those skills.

And nobody is disagreeing with them on that point. The debate, as I see it, is regarding the willingness to make a specific projection regarding his power development.

Part of this comes down the fundamental differences between the concept of projecting and predicting. Projecting is the act of using available data and a set of assumptions to describe a range of possible outcomes and their likelihood of occurring. Predicting is putting all your eggs in the basket of one of those outcomes.

Steel is saying that players who have similar profiles as Stubbs don't tend to develop significant power in the majors -- even accounting for Stubbs' body type and the scouting report. He is taking that as his baseline projection and stating it as the most likely outcome. He doesn't deny the real possibility of Stubbs developing breakout power, it's just not like most likely outcome.

Doug is saying that Stubbs' statistical record so far is not representative of his likely future developmental path. He's arguring that Steel is making poor assumptions, incorrectly weighting the statistical and historical record relative to Stubbs' specific scouting based information. He then predicts a significant surge of power over the next few years.

I find this contrast particularly interesting because it really hints at underlying struggle of the stats and scouting folks to get along. Scouts make their living finding future major leaguers. Their success as scouts depends on their ability to make a case for their player and convincing management to take a chance by describing a path of success that ends with the guy in a big league uniform. And frequently, the scout is one of the only people who can see the information on which he's making his assessment (a live viewing of the player playing the game). Within the bounds of maintaining his credibility, the scout is encouraged to paint a pretty picture. The scout gets his rep not necessarily from being the most correct, the most often, but from properly identifying the right needles in the haystack.

The statistician is not in the position to interpret qualitative information. There are established methods and formula. In terms of building the model, the statistician is forced to show his work. Usually, the goal of the statistician is to simply reduce the amount of error between his model and reality. The incentive is to be the most correct, the most often. And there are 1,000 other people with access to the exact same set of information. There's frankly not much of a value add.

But the most likely outcome for nearly any prospect is that he won't be a major leaguer, and that he won't be a good one. As the prospect gets older, this becomes even more true. The reality is that there future skill development just can't be measured with much certainty. Sure, we can all put our stakes in the ground about a specific path of development -- but most of us will end up wrong most of the time. The differing approaches to analyzing it come with a different sets of incentives for making certain assumptions -- and that's not a gap not likely to be bridged any time soon.

fearofpopvol1
10-02-2008, 03:47 PM
I know what you mean. I am admittedly a numbers first guy. Still, there is something to be said by seeing someone do something with your own eyes. I may be completely wrong on this one and I know what the numbers say, but Stubbs is on the verge of hitting for some power. I can just see it in his swing. I still am not sure he hits more than 25 anytime soon, but I can see him being a 15-25 HR guy soon, which for CF, is more than enough.

I truly sincerely hope you're right. I really do. I'm not rooting against Stubbs.

757690
10-02-2008, 04:31 PM
And nobody is disagreeing with them on that point. The debate, as I see it, is regarding the willingness to make a specific projection regarding his power development.

Part of this comes down the fundamental differences between the concept of projecting and predicting. Projecting is the act of using available data and a set of assumptions to describe a range of possible outcomes and their likelihood of occurring. Predicting is putting all your eggs in the basket of one of those outcomes.

Steel is saying that players who have similar profiles as Stubbs don't tend to develop significant power in the majors -- even accounting for Stubbs' body type and the scouting report. He is taking that as his baseline projection and stating it as the most likely outcome. He doesn't deny the real possibility of Stubbs developing breakout power, it's just not like most likely outcome.

Doug is saying that Stubbs' statistical record so far is not representative of his likely future developmental path. He's arguring that Steel is making poor assumptions, incorrectly weighting the statistical and historical record relative to Stubbs' specific scouting based information. He then predicts a significant surge of power over the next few years.

I find this contrast particularly interesting because it really hints at underlying struggle of the stats and scouting folks to get along. Scouts make their living finding future major leaguers. Their success as scouts depends on their ability to make a case for their player and convincing management to take a chance by describing a path of success that ends with the guy in a big league uniform. And frequently, the scout is one of the only people who can see the information on which he's making his assessment (a live viewing of the player playing the game). Within the bounds of maintaining his credibility, the scout is encouraged to paint a pretty picture. The scout gets his rep not necessarily from being the most correct, the most often, but from properly identifying the right needles in the haystack.

The statistician is not in the position to interpret qualitative information. There are established methods and formula. In terms of building the model, the statistician is forced to show his work. Usually, the goal of the statistician is to simply reduce the amount of error between his model and reality. The incentive is to be the most correct, the most often. And there are 1,000 other people with access to the exact same set of information. There's frankly not much of a value add.

But the most likely outcome for nearly any prospect is that he won't be a major leaguer, and that he won't be a good one. As the prospect gets older, this becomes even more true. The reality is that there future skill development just can't be measured with much certainty. Sure, we can all put our stakes in the ground about a specific path of development -- but most of us will end up wrong most of the time. The differing approaches to analyzing it come with a different sets of incentives for making certain assumptions -- and that's not a gap not likely to be bridged any time soon.

Thanks for the in depth analysis. I agree with most of what you said, but here is where I disagree.

1)
Within the bounds of maintaining his credibility, the scout is encouraged to paint a pretty picture.

Scouts who predict Brandon Larsons will be Cal Ripkens don't work very long. The only incentive for a scout is to be honest and give the most accurate report he can. I would argue that scouts are more likely to paint a more negative view of a prospect, just to counter the FO's desire for a rosey one. Still, all in all, scouts must give very honest, straightforward reports, or else that will catch up with them and they will no longer be scouts.

2) Scouts use stats too. They might not analyze them as much as statisticians, but they use them the same way, to project the future of minor leaguers. In today's world, it no longer is stats vs. scouts. It really is just how well the two work together.

In the discussion between Doug and Steel, my observation was that Doug was trying to combine the two, and Steel was only referring to stats, and not acknowledging the value of watching a player play. It appeared that Doug was only trying to point out that there is value to watching a player play the game, in addition to using stats, and then Steel got his feelings hurt. I could be wrong and I apologize to either of the two if I misinterpreted the discussion.

I agree with Steels point, and my post actually backs up what he said, but just with a different explanation. His main point was that the odds were against Stubbs developing power. My point was that what was needed for Stubbs to develop power was for him to develop certain skills that would enable him to drive the ball more...increasing bat speed, pitch recognition, learning to swing more from his back leg than his front, etc.
So I agree with Steel that chances are slim that Stubbs will be a power hitter the way he is developing and that he needs to change the way he is developing in order to be a power hitter. Since Stubbs is the only one who can really control the development of his skills, it is impossible to either project or predict when or if he will ever be a power hitter. Which is something you agreed with here, "The reality is that there future skill development just can't be measured with much certainty."

Because of this, and a few other reasons, it really is difficult to even project what a minor leaguer will amount to eventually. Since the key is his development of skills, and that development can not be measured by stats nor scouting, since it is up to the player himself how quickly if ever he will develop these skills, there will be too many outliners to make any projection meaningful. And definitely too many to make predictions meaningful.

RedsManRick
10-02-2008, 05:18 PM
Scouts who predict Brandon Larsons will be Cal Ripkens don't work very long. The only incentive for a scout is to be honest and give the most accurate report he can. I would argue that scouts are more likely to paint a more negative view of a prospect, just to counter the FO's desire for a rosey one. Still, all in all, scouts must give very honest, straightforward reports, or else that will catch up with them and they will no longer be scouts

I understand the point. I guess the issue is that the scouts are in a position to describe a range of possible outcomes in which the underlying data is somewhat subjective. They aren't looking at a 21 year old and saying he will be Cal Ripken. They are saying he might be. Only, they don't have to put an actual figure on how likely that outcome is. They can use extremely gray terms like "ceiling". It's not that the scout is trying to be misleading. That's what I meant by "within the bounds...". Crying Ripken a time too often costs you your job. But by nature of what they do, the scout is allowed to talk in more general terms than the analyst.


2) Scouts use stats too. They might not analyze them as much as statisticians, but they use them the same way, to project the future of minor leaguers. In today's world, it no longer is stats vs. scouts. It really is just how well the two work together.

Yes and no. 20 wins is a stat. .275 batting average is a stat. 106 RBI is a stat. John Kruk and Steve Phillips use stats every night. But they don't use them analytically; They use them descriptively. They do the "math" using their scouting brains and apply a set of stats that seems to correspond with the image their scouting brains produced. It's a big, big difference. When they look at the stats and conclude that Justin Morneau has produced more value than Joe Mauer, you can see how well they understand "the stats". I doubt many scouts (perhaps scouting directors) are running league adjustment regression models and forecasting systems. It's more than just picking the bigger number on a set of counting stats.

Clearly, at the organizational level, you blend stats and scouting. You collecting all of the available information and synthesize it as well as you can. But the people who do each sort of analysis genuinely operate in different ways; They speak different languages. Sure, most people dabble in the other discipline a bit. But ultimately somebody has to speak both languages, ignore of of them, or have very good translators at his/her side. The evidence suggests there's a healthy mix of those situations in major league front offices.



In the discussion between Doug and Steel, my observation was that Doug was trying to combine the two, and Steel was only referring to stats, and not acknowledging the value of watching a player play. It appeared that Doug was only trying to point out that there is value to watching a player play the game, in addition to using stats, and then Steel got his feelings hurt. I could be wrong and I apologize to either of the two if I misinterpreted the discussion.

I agree Steel over-reacted a bit. And Doug was trying to make the basic point that you can't go on stats alone -- but that's not news to Steel. Doug was making some assertions that were fairly lightly supported, even by his scouting evidence. And his references to the data were largely to illustrate their fallibility. Ultimately, Steel was trying to make it clear to Doug that while the Stubbs may have a ton of potential as evidenced by the scouting report, the odds are stacked against him. Doug seemed unwilling to concede that point.



I agree with Steels point, and my post actually backs up what he said, but just with a different explanation. His main point was that the odds were against Stubbs developing power. My point was that what was needed for Stubbs to develop power was for him to develop certain skills that would enable him to drive the ball more...increasing bat speed, pitch recognition, learning to swing more from his back leg than his front, etc.
So I agree with Steel that chances are slim that Stubbs will be a power hitter the way he is developing and that he needs to change the way he is developing in order to be a power hitter. Since Stubbs is the only one who can really control the development of his skills, it is impossible to either project or predict when or if he will ever be a power hitter. Which is something you agreed with here, "The reality is that there future skill development just can't be measured with much certainty."

Because of this, and a few other reasons, it really is difficult to even project what a minor leaguer will amount to eventually. Since the key is his development of skills, and that development can not be measured by stats nor scouting, since it is up to the player himself how quickly if ever he will develop these skills, there will be too many outliners to make any projection meaningful. And definitely too many to make predictions meaningful.

Well, one of the key things with Stubbs is that the skills he needs to improve in order to tap in to that power potentially don't really show a ton of room for improvement. That's the rub I suppose. Generally speaking, players don't develop higher contact rates over time. Like speed, it's a young skill that pretty much decreases throughout a player's career. Now, a player can improve his production by increasing his selectivity, swinging only when he has the best chance for solid contact and taking walks when he doesn't get a chance. But Stubbs' is already a pretty selective hitter. He's already squaring up the ball well when he does make contact. So he has fewer avenues through which he can add power. And if he starts adding loft to his swing, lengthening it a bit, that doesn't portend well for his contact rate.

Skills can be measured by stats to a degree. They can be found in some of the less followed metrics that isolate certain areas of performance. The question with Stubbs is what fundamental skills have to improve, and in what ways, for him to realize his power potential? It seems to me quite the inferential leap to simply look at his body and athleticism and suggest that it's only a matter of time.

dougdirt
10-02-2008, 05:38 PM
Skills can be measured by stats to a degree. They can be found in some of the less followed metrics that isolate certain areas of performance.
Right, but my point has been more that current skills can be measured by stats, but that future skill isn't always reflective in current stats.



The question with Stubbs is what fundamental skills have to improve, and in what ways, for him to realize his power potential? It seems to me quite the inferential leap to simply look at his body and athleticism and suggest that it's only a matter of time.

I agree. But when you couple his body/athleticism with his swing he currently has, at least personally I can see where the power can come from.

*BaseClogger*
10-02-2008, 05:43 PM
Eh, Stubbs and Dickerson are the same player.

Dickerson's minor-league line:
BA - .260
OBP - .360
SLG - .415
HR% - 38.0
K/BB - 2.1
SB - 32 per 600 PA @ 76%

Stubbs's minor-league line:
BA - .269
OBP - .367
SLG - .415
HR% - 47.1
K/BB - 2.0
SB - 34 per 600 PA @ 73%

Nice post and I'm surprised nobody has quoted it yet. I think there are two major differences between the two players: 1)Stubbs was a first round pick 2)Dickerson took longer to develope. Stubbs began putting up decent numbers right away while Dickerson was a late bloomer. As Dickerson put it all together, his power progressed. At age 23 (Stubbs current age) Dickerson only hit 11 homers in 436 ABs. This year Dickerson had a .479 SLG in AAA. Now, certainly we don't want Stubbs to take as long as Dickerson, but he is already more progressed. I'm not saying Stubbs will develope power, but that he might just like Dickerson...

Bip Roberts
10-02-2008, 05:48 PM
Stubbs HOF 2035

:)

757690
10-02-2008, 10:19 PM
Well, one of the key things with Stubbs is that the skills he needs to improve in order to tap in to that power potentially don't really show a ton of room for improvement. That's the rub I suppose. Generally speaking, players don't develop higher contact rates over time. Like speed, it's a young skill that pretty much decreases throughout a player's career. Now, a player can improve his production by increasing his selectivity, swinging only when he has the best chance for solid contact and taking walks when he doesn't get a chance. But Stubbs' is already a pretty selective hitter. He's already squaring up the ball well when he does make contact. So he has fewer avenues through which he can add power. And if he starts adding loft to his swing, lengthening it a bit, that doesn't portend well for his contact rate.



This is the main thing I disagree with you on in this post. Hitting for power is not a young skill like speed. Not at all.

Hitting in general is a young skill that decreases with age, as the player's bat speed decreases. All aspects of his hitting goes down...contact rate, power, line drive ratio, etc. But the skills needed to hit homers do not decrease, because the skills needed to hit homers are not physical skills, they are intelligence skills. I have no numbers to support this, and would welcome anyone to do the research, but it seems to me that players OBP goes down either in concert with, or before his power numbers do. It seems to me that many older hitters end their careers with low OBP but still the ability to hit homers on mistake pitches. I could be wrong.

Anyway, hitters have generally two types of effective swings. Power swings when they hit from their back leg and whip their hips in co-ordination with their wrists, and contact swings, when they keep their hands back and don't swing until their weight is on their front foot. EE always seems to have a power swing and Kepp is a good example of a guy who mostly has contact swings. As one would guess, power swings lead to more homers and less contact, contact swings lead to more contact and less homers.

The key to hitting is to know when to use which swing. That is one reason why hitting is so tough. The skill in being a good power hitter, is understanding pitching well enough to know when to use the power swing. It mostly comes down to pitch recognition, knowing what pitches you can crush and being prepared to crush them when they come. That is why a guy the size of Joe Morgan can hit as many homers as he did, and why a guy as big as Wily Mo Pena can hit as few has he does.
Clearly the bigger and stronger the player, the bigger his power zone is, and thus the reason why biggers guys tend to hit more homers. But if you don't know your power zone, or don't have the intelligence to recognize a pitch in it quick enough, you will not be a successful power hitter, no matter how big you are.
So the skill to hit homers is not based on how big you are, but on how smart of a hitter you are, and therefore, is one that can not be measured by any stat, other than homers.

Because of this, Stubbs has plenty of room for improvement in terms of power, since he clearly has not learned that skill yet, his numbers show that. He seems to be working simply on making good solid contact, and not on isolating good pitches to crush and crushing them. And there is no way of knowing when he will learn that skill (if ever), since the only to see it, is to see a rise in his homers.

Mario-Rijo
10-03-2008, 02:18 AM
Well, one of the key things with Stubbs is that the skills he needs to improve in order to tap in to that power potentially don't really show a ton of room for improvement. That's the rub I suppose. Generally speaking, players don't develop higher contact rates over time. Like speed, it's a young skill that pretty much decreases throughout a player's career. Now, a player can improve his production by increasing his selectivity, swinging only when he has the best chance for solid contact and taking walks when he doesn't get a chance. But Stubbs' is already a pretty selective hitter. He's already squaring up the ball well when he does make contact. So he has fewer avenues through which he can add power. And if he starts adding loft to his swing, lengthening it a bit, that doesn't portend well for his contact rate.

I disagree with this assumption and think this is the root of the problem with Stubbs less than stellar power output to this point. Doug has already made mention of this in this thread I believe somewhere. Plus I would submit to you his GB/LD/FB rates as proof that he isn't squaring up the ball like is ideal and thusly would be the avenue to more power potential for him. He simply is terribly inconsistent with this skill.

2007 - 22 - Low A Dayton
IsoP .151
GB - 44%
LD - 13%
FB - 43%
.421 Slg%

2008 - 23 - A+ Sarasota
IsoP .145
GB - 41%
LD - 26%
FB - 33%
.406 Slg%

2008 - 23 - AA Chattanooga
IsoP .087
GB - 45%
LD - 23%
FB - 32%
.402 Slg%

2008 - 23 - AAA Louisville
IsoP .187
GB - 40%
LD - 20%
FB - 40%
.480 Slg%

It's pretty easy to see that when he keeps the ball off the ground and in the air he does slug for a respectable %.

The question now becomes why? Why the inability to square up the pitch? I think that goes hand in hand with his below average ability to make contact in the 1st place. His hand eye coordination? A hole in his swing, like for instance a loop? Bad bat control, thus the reason his ex-manager request he stick with the shortening of the swing? Bad pitch recognition on top of it could be an issue as well but it's all in his Bat control IMO.

It really doesn't matter what it is unless he fixes it. But is it fixable to begin with is an issue that interests me. If it's not I say jettison him this offseason before it becomes apparent for all the world to see and his value drops like a rock. But I think it's possible it's fixable but that begs the question then of why it hasn't yet.

RedsManRick
10-03-2008, 01:51 PM
I see a LD% above 20% at each stop in 2008. In my book, LD% is basically the definition of "good contact" and above 20% is good. If the FB rate goes up, the SLG goes up but the batting average (and OBP) goes down. And if the batting average drops, you're getting in to dangerous territory. And visa versa.

I don't see how he can walk as much as he does with poor pitch recognition. If it's a contact rate problem, changing his swing to make contact easier won't likely generate more power.

I know the Mike Cameron comparison has been made many times over. But as I look for comps, I can't help but wonder if Rickie Weeks isn't more appropriate. Weeks has struggled with the contact/power balance his whole career. The last two years he's traded contact for walks and power, but his net production hasn't changed. Perhaps he'll turn a corner, but I think Stubbs will end up in this same general trap. You look at Cameron, at Curtis Granderson, and they hit for some real solid power in the minors. Outside of 75 AB in Louisville, Stubbs just hasn't. I think 2009 will be a big inflection power for his power development.

I have no problem with the guy being a .250/.350/.420 player. Given his defense and speed, that's quite solid production. I just don't see what skills he's going to change to push that IsoP north of .200.

BoydsOfSummer
10-03-2008, 07:11 PM
If he hits a bunch of doubles and runs like the wind that would be cool. I love dudes like that.

PuffyPig
10-03-2008, 11:21 PM
If he hits a bunch of doubles and runs like the wind that would be cool. I love dudes like that.


Not that there's anything wrong with that.

camisadelgolf
10-05-2008, 03:26 AM
Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Except that he still wouldn't be Tim Lincecum in RedsZone.

TRF
10-05-2008, 02:59 PM
Except that he still wouldn't be Tim Lincecum in RedsZone.

and yet the only people that mention Lincecum anymore are the Stubbs backers.

funny ain't it?

dougdirt
10-05-2008, 03:06 PM
and yet the only people that mention Lincecum anymore are the Stubbs backers.

funny ain't it?

Maybe on this site. I have seen two other sites pimp that Stubbs isn't going to win the Cy Young this year in just the last week.

Doesn't matter, even without mentioning it, I believe a lot of people still get on Stubbs because of who is isn't rather than what he can/can't do on the field.

RedsManRick
10-05-2008, 04:20 PM
Maybe on this site. I have seen two other sites pimp that Stubbs isn't going to win the Cy Young this year in just the last week.

Doesn't matter, even without mentioning it, I believe a lot of people still get on Stubbs because of who is isn't rather than what he can/can't do on the field.

I don't think most people who point it out are using it as a point against Stubbs. They use it as a point against the Reds and doing so requires mentioning the accomplishments of the player we picked instead. If Stubbs turns out to be the player you, Doug, and others claim he will be (or has a good chance of being), then and only then will that argument die down.

Until then, there's plenty of ammo for the anti-Stubbs argument on its own merits. And there are about a half dozen other teams who can make the same case that Reds fans are making: given what we know now, Lincecum would have been the better pick. Over time, that assessment could change over time, but it's pretty stupid to brush off the basic point as of today.

SteelSD
10-06-2008, 01:30 AM
Maybe on this site. I have seen two other sites pimp that Stubbs isn't going to win the Cy Young this year in just the last week.

Doesn't matter, even without mentioning it, I believe a lot of people still get on Stubbs because of who is isn't rather than what he can/can't do on the field.

The Reds should have selected Jered Weaver instead of Homer Bailey and they should have selected Tim Lincecum instead of Drew Stubbs. Now, do you actually think that anyone's analysis of either Bailey or Stubbs is predicated on what the Reds should have done? Not a chance. The failed decisions regarding those picks are on the Reds' collective front office head(s). Bailey and Stubbs' performances are their own and an objective analysis doesn't take into account who should have been selected instead.

Both have flailed wildly thusfar. Stubbs can't seem to produce the "power potential" your subjective assertions suggest. He's been supported by unsupportable LD rates, which have produced unsupportable BABIP rates, and you seem to think that he's somehow improved. And you demand that I "Go watch a game"?

Well, you've obviously watched a good number of games for the current crop of minor league players. So why is it that you didn't figure out Bailey's obvious deficiencies? Why is is that Paul Janish isn't anything resembling a MLB starting Shortstop? Why is it that Drew Stubbs hasn't come close to representing the player you think he might be? Why is it that I preached caution for Jay Bruce yet was optimistic about Joey Votto?

Sorry, Doug, but if you want folks like me actually trusting your take on how subjective items trump the objective, then you need to be right far more often when you demand that the subjective holds the trump card.

And you should understand that you're not at all "stats first".

dougdirt
10-06-2008, 03:17 AM
Go Drew Stubbs. He starts playing again on Tuesday in the Arizona Fall League for Peoria.

lollipopcurve
10-06-2008, 06:57 AM
So why is it that you didn't figure out Bailey's obvious deficiencies? Why is is that Paul Janish isn't anything resembling a MLB starting Shortstop? Why is it that Drew Stubbs hasn't come close to representing the player you think he might be? Why is it that I preached caution for Jay Bruce yet was optimistic about Joey Votto?

Sorry, Steel, but the self-congratulation here is a little irksome. Everybody on this site is right about some players, wrong about others. Remember how you didn't think Volquez was a good target in the Hamilton trade? And there are plenty of other examples of you being wrong, me being wrong, everybody being wrong. Doug does a great job covering the minor leagues on his site and in helping out on this site -- his enthusiasm is a welcome addition, in my book, because, as we know, it's a lot safer to predict failure since most players never make it and/or never live up to their billing.