Re: Baseball America's Top Ten Reds prospects
Well, if you read my posts, you know that the one thing I have taken from watching over 2,500 minor league baseball games over the years is that baseball instincts and generally having "winning" intangibles are the most important tools. Of course, you have to have the skills, but I will take a guy who is a "winner" everytime and I am convinced that I will beat you with those types of players if the talent level is at all close. If you want the best example of that kind of player, look at Pete Rose. Some on this board would disagree, but that is what I have taken from watching minor league baseball.
Frazier probably had the best instincts and intangibles of any player that I have seen in a long time. I remember having a conversation with Donnie Scott about Frazier. He said the same thing...that if he could pick one player in the organization to build a team around, it would be Frazier, and he said in his own brand of salty language that he did not give a hoot about Frazier's OPS, that Frazier would just find a way to win. Do you think it was an accident that Frazier won all those games starting in Little League?
Lollipopcurve, Soto could be pushed and I think his stats would withstand the challenge, but he needs the experience of playing and for that reason, I would just put him at Sarasota and leave him there. When you move a guy too fast, he gets to the big leagues and you start seeing mental mistakes that cost you games and the fans scream bloody murder because you just gave a game away, but what really happened was the player never learned to play in the minor leagues even though his stats might have made you think he could advance.
Camisadelgolf: Conatser, I don't know. He really wore down as the season went on. Was his arm sore? Was he just physically worn down from his first year of pro ball? Only he knows. He was great when he first got to Dayton but by August 1st he was not the same guy. His stuff was nothing great. Fastball maybe a little below average. Decent curve when he could command it. It will be interesting to see what he does in his second year. The $100,000 bonus would be something that would make you wonder. Here's something to look at in the low minors (it changes once you get to Double-A): The guys that the organization rates as having the best stuff are going to be put into the starting rotation to get innings. Then you have the guys who project as closers like a Zach Stewart and he will be in that role. The guys that are put in long and middle relief are usually guys that are looked at as being a little short in terms of stuff (we are talking Single-A). Conatser was basically a middle man. That tells you something about what the player development people thought as opposed to the scouting department. That's not to say those guys can't make it. Jeremy Horst was a middle man who was given a chance to be a starter and was dominant. But look to the big leagues and see how many guys you have on a pitching staff that were middle relievers in Single-A ball. Not many.