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Thread: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Edd Roush View Post
    The Reds may hope Blandino has a similar career arc to a Todd Frazier.
    If Buckley sees some Frazier in him, then I'm fine with the pick. But if he's picking him because he's got a good chance of being a just-enough major leaguer, I'm not crazy about that.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Blandino was ranked the 30th best draft prospect by Baseball America. Chris Buckley and the Reds weren't the only people who seemed to think he was good. End of the day, if he can stick at second base defensively, thats an above-average bat.
    We heard the same argument with Ryan LaMarre and Jeff Gelalich, who were similarly rated by BA and other experts, and guys Buckley took in the first two rounds. I think Buckley specifically and the scouting community more generally have a blindspot when it comes to "productive" college hitters without tools.

    Look, I'm not saying Alex Blandino will never be a good player - I have no idea. He may be and I could be totally wrong - in fact, I'm willing to defer judgment. I've been wrong before.

    I just sincerely hope he is a much bigger impact player than a Mark Ellis or a Chris Valaika or Justin Turner for that matter- otherwise IMO it's a guy that should've been drafted after the 2nd round (let alone the sandwich). Personally, I would've gone with higher upside middle infielders - guys like Forrest Wall, Ti'Quan Forbes, even Josh Morgan. Sure they may be farther away, but they also project to be better players once they get to the big leagues. No risk no reward.

    By the way, if he ends up as a 3B, which is not unreasonable considering that's where he is playing in college, then there are a whole host of others that should've gone ahead of him. Maybe even including Jacob Gatewood.
    Last edited by Benihana; 06-11-2014 at 08:20 PM.
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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo View Post
    If Buckley sees some Frazier in him, then I'm fine with the pick. But if he's picking him because he's got a good chance of being a just-enough major leaguer, I'm not crazy about that.
    That's the drafting philosophy that built the A's and Cardinals. Smart athletes, skilled at playing baseball. Low ceiling, but very high floor. If this was a top 10 in the draft pick, I'd agree with you, but after the first dozen or so picks, their aren't too many high ceiling guys left that have a decent floor to their game.

    And drafting Blandino is far more cost effective than signing Mark Ellis types year to year. That is exactly why the A's and Cards have done so well. They can spend their money on difference makers, not fillers.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    Smart athletes, skilled at playing baseball.
    Do we know this about Blandino?

    If he turns into a Brandon Moss (8th round) or a Matt Carpenter (13th round) I'll be tickled pink. But I think projecting these types isn't much easier than projecting raw atheletes.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo View Post
    Do we know this about Blandino?

    If he turns into a Brandon Moss (8th round) or a Matt Carpenter (13th round) I'll be tickled pink. But I think projecting these types isn't much easier than projecting raw atheletes.
    We know very little about draft picks. Look at the list of first rounders from the past. Less than half become difference makers. Blandino is playing the odds, betting on a 3-2 horse instead of a 5-1. Not as big of a pay out, but if you keep making those bets, you'll win more often.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    We know very little about draft picks. Look at the list of first rounders from the past. Less than half become difference makers. Blandino is playing the odds, betting on a 3-2 horse instead of a 5-1. Not as big of a pay out, but if you keep making those bets, you'll win more often.
    Either way, you lose. And who goes to the track to play 3-2 horses?
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    My problem with the top of the Reds draft was never a matter of thinking the guys selected were bums, but more that there were better options available and the guys picked at 19 & 29 most likely would have been there at 29 & 58 respectively.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    That's the drafting philosophy that built the A's and Cardinals. Smart athletes, skilled at playing baseball. Low ceiling, but very high floor. If this was a top 10 in the draft pick, I'd agree with you, but after the first dozen or so picks, their aren't too many high ceiling guys left that have a decent floor to their game.

    And drafting Blandino is far more cost effective than signing Mark Ellis types year to year. That is exactly why the A's and Cards have done so well. They can spend their money on difference makers, not fillers.
    I would argue that the A's do the exact opposite: (at least recently), they draft high upside HS players- guys like Billy McKinney and Addison Russell. They spend their money on journeymen and filler types, not premier free agents. In fact prior to last week, they drafted a HS -not college- player in the first round of the last three drafts.

    And as far as the Cardinals go, here is a list of the last 12 college players they have drafted in the first round going back to 2007:

    Pete Kozma
    Clay Mortensen
    Brett Wallace
    Lance Lynn
    Zack Cox
    Seth Blair
    Kolten Wong
    Michael Wacha
    James Ramsey
    Stephen Piscotty
    Patrick Wisdom
    Marco Gonzales

    Wacha aside, how many of those guys have been impact players at the major league level? In fact, how many have even become average or above average starters at the major league level? And remember - these are the "very high floor" guys you speak of. I would argue that the Cardinals have succeeded based off of:

    1. Their ability to acquire talent at the major league level (something Walt has struggled with big time over the last 18 months - partially due to money but partially due to general inactivity/lack of creativity). Matt Holliday, Jhonny Peralta, Peter Borjous and Adam Wainwright all fall under this category.

    and (as it pertains to this thread's topic)

    2. Their ability to find and draft serviceable talent in the later rounds. I'd have no issue at all if the Reds drafted a guy like Blandino on Day 2 or Day 3. I just don't think he carries enough upside to be a top 30 pick, that's all. And fortunately for us, neither do most of the guys the Cardinals picked listed above.

    (To illustrate the second point, Allen Craig was an 8th round pick. Matt Carpenter and Albert Pujols were 13th round picks. Matt Adams was a 23rd round pick. Oscar Taveras, Carlos Martinez and Yadi Molina weren't even drafted - they were international FA, another category which the Reds have pretty much ignored since the great Class of '08 and IMO the place where the Reds need to go to find their future shortstop.)
    Last edited by Benihana; 06-11-2014 at 10:12 PM.
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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    I would argue that the A's do the exact opposite: (at least recently), they draft high upside HS players- guys like Billy McKinney and Addison Russell. They spend their money on journeymen and filler types, not premier free agents. In fact prior to last week, they drafted a HS -not college- player in the first round of the last three drafts.

    And as far as the Cardinals go, here is a list of the last 12 college players they have drafted in the first round going back to 2007:

    Pete Kozma
    Clay Mortensen
    Brett Wallace
    Lance Lynn
    Zack Cox
    Seth Blair
    Kolten Wong
    Michael Wacha
    James Ramsey
    Stephen Piscotty
    Patrick Wisdom
    Marco Gonzales

    Wacha aside, how many of those guys have been impact players at the major league level? In fact, how many have even become average or above average starters at the major league level? And remember - these are the "very high floor" guys you speak of. I would argue that the Cardinals have succeeded based off of:

    1. Their ability to acquire talent at the major league level (something Walt has struggled with big time over the last 18 months - partially due to money but partially due to general inactivity/lack of creativity). Matt Holliday, Jhonny Peralta, Peter Borjous and Adam Wainwright all fall under this category.

    and (as it pertains to this thread's topic)

    2. Their ability to find and draft serviceable talent in the later rounds. I'd have no issue at all if the Reds drafted a guy like Blandino on Day 2 or Day 3. I just don't think he carries enough upside to be a top 30 pick, that's all. And fortunately for us, neither do most of the guys the Cardinals picked listed above.

    (To illustrate the second point, Allen Craig was an 8th round pick. Matt Carpenter and Albert Pujols were 13th round picks. Matt Adams was a 23rd round pick. Oscar Taveras, Carlos Martinez and Yadi Molina weren't even drafted - they were international FA, another category which the Reds have pretty much ignored since the great Class of '08 and IMO the place where the Reds need to go to find their future shortstop.)
    The A's have definitely changed direction in the last few years, but during the moneyball era, drafting baseball players, not athletes, was their philosophy.

    As for the Cardinals, that was a pretty impressive list, considering their draft position during those years. Look at who else was take around those rounds. The Cards did quite well all things considered. The got two guys in their rotation, their starting 2B this year, their starting SS last year, a top 100 MLB prospect, a guy they traded for Matt Holiday. I would love it if the Reds got that from their 1st rounders over the next 7 years.

    I agree that the key is getting the decent role players in the middle rounds. and we'll see how the Reds do on that. But there's no way Blandino lasts past the second round. Maybe he lasts to pick #58. Maybe not. The Reds felt he wouldn't, and I trust them on that. They have much more information on that they we do.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo View Post
    Either way, you lose. And who goes to the track to play 3-2 horses?
    Pete Rose? But then again, he plays everything when he goes to the track.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    But there's no way Blandino lasts past the second round. Maybe he lasts to pick #58. Maybe not. The Reds felt he wouldn't, and I trust them on that. They have much more information on that they we do.
    I hope they have more information because Blandino doesn't look to me like the kind of player you really kick yourself for missing.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    The A's have definitely changed direction in the last few years, but during the moneyball era, drafting baseball players, not athletes, was their philosophy.
    There is a big difference between upside and athletes. They are not mutually exclusive, but not the same thing either. I loved the Winker and LaValley picks- they are not "athletes" but have high upside bats. I want upside. If they're athletic too that's cool, but ability to be an impact player is what I care about most.

    As for the Cardinals, that was a pretty impressive list, considering their draft position during those years. Look at who else was take around those rounds. The Cards did quite well all things considered. The got two guys in their rotation, their starting 2B this year, their starting SS last year, a top 100 MLB prospect, a guy they traded for Matt Holiday. I would love it if the Reds got that from their 1st rounders over the next 7 years.
    The Reds have already done better (when it comes to the first two rounds). We have a starting SS, starting 3B, starting C, starting RF, starting CF, one rotation staple (two if you count Cingrani), and three maybe four top 100 prospects. And THREE guys we traded for Latos plus one we traded for Choo. No one has beef with how the Reds have drafted generally on Day 1. I think they've been one of the best teams in the league. It is just a certain type of player that seems to be Buckley's weakness, and I fear Blandino may for that category.

    I agree that the key is getting the decent role players in the middle rounds. and we'll see how the Reds do on that. But there's no way Blandino lasts past the second round. Maybe he lasts to pick #58. Maybe not. The Reds felt he wouldn't, and I trust them on that. They have much more information on that they
    Unfortunately this has been Buckley's other weakness. Other than Chris Heisey who is a fourth OF, I'm not sure Buckley has found a single other player of any consequence after the fourth round in all of his years here. There were a couple of bullpen arms that had short stints in the show, but I'm not sure if anyone has had any kind of impact. That is where the Cardinals and some other teams have it on us. Of course no one is perfect and everyone has their faults. Buckley's just happen to be finding hidden gems after the fourth round, and low ceiling versatile college hitters who are jacks of all trades (and tools) but masters of none.

    And what Rojo said re: missing on Blandino
    Last edited by Benihana; 06-12-2014 at 01:54 AM.
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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Pete Kozma was drafted out of HS. I fail to see the point in listing the first round college players selected since 2007. Marco Gonzales was drafted last year while Patrick Wisdom, Stephen Piscotty and James Ramsey were drafted in 2012 and Kolten Wong was drafted in 2011. No, they aren't impact major league players or even average starters. Even if it is assumed it takes three years to reach the majors after college only Wong, which he is, would be expected to be with the Cardinals. Even then how many players make an immediate impact? Wacha is an exception. Using that logic one could argue against high upside HS players by citing the Texas Ranger last 6 drafts of HS players: Blake Bevan, Michael Main, Neil Ramirez, Jake Skole, Kellin Deglan, Luke Jackson, Kevin Matthews, Lewis Brinson, Joey Gallo, Collin Wiles, and Travis Demeritte. How many of them are impact players? Average players? Even have an AB or IP? The same doubles for the Cards HS picks of Rob Kaminsky, Steve Bean, Tyrell Jenkins, Shelby Miller, and Pete Kozma.

    Answering the question though, Lance Lynn is at least average, Wong is a decent rookie and the aforementioned Wacha. The HS players in that same time frame, Shelby Miller is at least average. Statistically that is 3/11 on the high floor college players compared to 1/5 high ceiling HS players, giving a slight edge to the low floor college players.

    I have no problem with picking Blandino. It is not a sexy pick nor a pick that will generate excitement but it is still a solid pick.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    I would argue that the A's do the exact opposite: (at least recently), they draft high upside HS players- guys like Billy McKinney and Addison Russell. They spend their money on journeymen and filler types, not premier free agents. In fact prior to last week, they drafted a HS -not college- player in the first round of the last three drafts.

    And as far as the Cardinals go, here is a list of the last 12 college players they have drafted in the first round going back to 2007:

    Pete Kozma
    Clay Mortensen
    Brett Wallace
    Lance Lynn
    Zack Cox
    Seth Blair
    Kolten Wong
    Michael Wacha
    James Ramsey
    Stephen Piscotty
    Patrick Wisdom
    Marco Gonzales

    Wacha aside, how many of those guys have been impact players at the major league level? In fact, how many have even become average or above average starters at the major league level? And remember - these are the "very high floor" guys you speak of. I would argue that the Cardinals have succeeded based off of:

    1. Their ability to acquire talent at the major league level (something Walt has struggled with big time over the last 18 months - partially due to money but partially due to general inactivity/lack of creativity). Matt Holliday, Jhonny Peralta, Peter Borjous and Adam Wainwright all fall under this category.

    and (as it pertains to this thread's topic)

    2. Their ability to find and draft serviceable talent in the later rounds. I'd have no issue at all if the Reds drafted a guy like Blandino on Day 2 or Day 3. I just don't think he carries enough upside to be a top 30 pick, that's all. And fortunately for us, neither do most of the guys the Cardinals picked listed above.

    (To illustrate the second point, Allen Craig was an 8th round pick. Matt Carpenter and Albert Pujols were 13th round picks. Matt Adams was a 23rd round pick. Oscar Taveras, Carlos Martinez and Yadi Molina weren't even drafted - they were international FA, another category which the Reds have pretty much ignored since the great Class of '08 and IMO the place where the Reds need to go to find their future shortstop.)
    I find the bolded part of the statement to be a rubbish excuse trotted out by Jocketty. The reason being? There are several contracts on his roster that could be sent the other way (or in another direction) that would set a deal (series of deals) at or near dollar-neutral. I find the under-lined portion to be spot on and largely the whole of the problem.
    Last edited by corkedbat; 06-12-2014 at 01:58 AM.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    There is a big difference between upside and athletes. They are not mutually exclusive, but not the same thing either. I loved the Winker and LaValley picks- they are not "athletes" but have high upside bats. I want upside. If they're athletic too that's cool, but ability to be an impact player is what I care about most.



    The Reds have already done better (when it comes to the first two rounds). We have a starting SS, starting 3B, starting C, starting RF, starting CF, one rotation staple (two if you count Cingrani), and three maybe four top 100 prospects. And THREE guys we traded for Latos plus one we traded for Choo. No one has beef with how the Reds have drafted generally on Day 1. I think they've been one of the best teams in the league. It is just a certain type of player that seems to be Buckley's weakness, and I fear Blandino may for that category.



    Unfortunately this has been Buckley's other weakness. Other than Chris Heisey who is a fourth OF, I'm not sure Buckley has found a single other player of any consequence after the fourth round in all of his years here. There were a couple of bullpen arms that had short stints in the show, but I'm not sure if anyone has had any kind of impact. That is where the Cardinals and some other teams have it on us. Of course no one is perfect and everyone has their faults. Buckley's just happen to be finding hidden gems after the fourth round, and low ceiling versatile college hitters who are jacks of all trades (and tools) but masters of none.

    And what Rojo said re: missing on Blandino
    Blandino's upside is that he's an infielder that can hit. He'll provide similar*value to Winkler if they both reach their ceiling.

    Reds did better because they drafted in a much better position. Lots of top 10 picks and top 15 picks and those are the ones that have worked out the best. Cards were drafting in the 20's and 30's. Big talent gap in those picks historically.

    This has been Buckley's weakness, drafting in the late rounds, which is why I like the change in philosophy. We'll see how it works.

    The Reds needed a new philosophy on drafting hitters. They needed to draft guys with the hit tool, and that seems to have been the philosophy. If it meant missing guys without the hit tool, but who have a higher ceiling because of athleticism, I don't mind. Reds have enough of those guys already in the system.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Re: 2014 Supplemental First Round Pick: Alex Blandino

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post

    The Reds needed a new philosophy on drafting hitters. They needed to draft guys with the hit tool, and that seems to have been the philosophy. If it meant missing guys without the hit tool, but who have a higher ceiling because of athleticism, I don't mind. Reds have enough of those guys already in the system.

    There seems to have been a shift to this over the last 3 drafts or so, to target hitters with a stronger hit tool, and a better approach at the plate, ironically starting with the high schooler Winker.

    Winker, SMB, Ervin, and now Blandino all seem to fit this new trend. It's early to know whether Blandino will have similar success moving into pro ball, but that seems to be the hope.

    I much prefer these kind of hitters in the system, the Reds still take plenty of fliers on the high upside guys with power as well, including Sparks in this past draft.

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