Originally Posted by AtomicDumpling
Keep in mind that at the time nobody thought a kid named Joey Votto was going to be a future MVP. He was a good prospect but not a great prospect at the time. It took him quite a while to make it to the major leagues. He was a bit of a late bloomer and developed much further than anybody ever thought he would. His case is certainly a great example of what you are risking when you trade a prospect, but we also have to understand that very, very few prospects (even top prospects) turn out to be as good as Joey Votto.
And it is common for people to use that description about prospects? Votto was a very highly regarded prospect by a clear consensus and was clearly expected to be a middle of the order force. The only real debate about him was whether to hand him the job on Opening Day after his cup of coffee September callup stint.