Originally Posted by Benihana
I see your thinking, but I still can't completely buy it. There aren't too many elite closers that came up through the ranks as relief pitchers. The ones that do usually advance to the majors extremely quickly- like within a year of being drafted (Chad Cordero, Huston Street). I guess you could use JJ Putz as a role model for Roenicke, but Putz was at least a #1 starter in college with absolutely filthy stuff. That's all I'm saying.
The reason why most (myself included) will rank Travis Wood, Sean Watson, etc. ahead of Roenicke, because their ceilings are in fact higher. Relief pitchers in the minor leagues tend not to be regarded very highly in general, the guys I mentioned above nothwithstanding. As for Medlock, he has pretty similar numbers to Roenicke now, only he's doing it at the same age a level ahead (AAA). I would rank Roenicke in the 12-20 range right now, but I would keep an eye on him for sure.
Well, Medlock's numbers took a hit tonight and his AAA stats don't look that good right now. I think Roenicke's numbers at AA are better, but small sample size.
Perhaps I am influenced by the Reds' own apparent view. For example, the Reds seemed to value Coutlangus quite highly after obtaining him from (I think) San Francisco. Moved him up pretty quickly, put him on the 40 man roster. I just got the feeling the Reds were high on him even though he didn't make the prospect lists.
I feel the same way about Roenicke and, to some extent, Asadoorian. Not highly rated, perhaps, but the Reds moved these guys up pretty quickly. Roenicke, drafted in 2006, is now closing some games for the AA team. Asadoorian, just converted to pitcher, was moved up a level pretty early on.
Obviously, time will tell. (I also like Watson a lot and am interested to see how Wood develops after a terrific beginning.)