"You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one."
With Duran gone (finally), I guess it's time for me to jump onboard the Danny Dorn train.
Below 39: Fly ball pitcher.
Above 47: Ground ball pitcher.
These are a bit arbitary, but Maloney is safely inside of any kind of neutral category you want to make. He is almost exactly on the average for GB%. I mean, if he was at 45% instead of 42%, would we be calling him a ground ball pitcher? That doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
A majority of the pitchers in baseball are flyball pitchers. That doesn't change the definition though. If you allow more grounders than fly balls, you are a groundball pitcher. If you allow more flyballs than grounders, you are a flyball pitcher. Maloney allows about 16% more flyballs than groundballs. He is a flyball pitcher.
I have actually looked for this data before and never found it, so thanks for asking. To generalize, it looks like GB rates drop roughly 1 point for every level you advance. And the International League numbers are about 1.5% higher than the major league average.PHP Code:
League Level K/9 GB% LD% FB%
northwest A-SS 7.57 47.82 13.38 28.78
nypl A-SS 7.47 48.71 14.24 26.88
midwest A 7.44 47.18 12.61 30.11
southatlantic A 7.54 48.05 13.82 28.87
california A-Adv 7.62 45.65 12.72 32.21
carolina A-Adv 6.92 45.57 11.47 32.58
floridastate A-Adv 7.46 46.50 12.78 30.80
southern AA 7.57 45.69 15.52 28.31
texas AA 7.01 44.85 16.08 29.69
eastern AA 7.37 45.58 12.79 31.48
international AAA 6.94 45.11 16.94 27.60
pacificcoast AAA 7.02 44.58 16.25 29.30
I would caution against putting a lot of weight in minor fluctuations of GB% from year to year - even established major league pitchers see this happen.
I am really surprised at the rating of Dickerson. He has written a nice story of tenacity and effort, but he is what he is. He has been in the minors for 6 years for displaying the same weaknesses: he strikes out 33% of the time, he can't hit lefthanding pitching, and he can't maintain a short swing - when he goes on a HR streak, it gets long and he goes into a dismal slump. Each year this has happened. The only difference I can see is that he hit 6 HRs for the ML team in 100 ABs last year. I think he deserves a shot to make the Reds in spring training but if he wins a starting OF job - it means the Reds are giving up on the season instead of pursuing a legitimate CFer.
Sometime in the next couple of years, Josh Roenicke will become a more polished, experienced, confident pitcher. He will then become a dominating late inning reliever for several years. He will be extremely hard to hit and will mow down the opposition.
I'm not sure he will have a very long career because he is so dependent on a dominant fastball. But if he hits his stride when the Reds are coming together as a team, I can see Roenicke -- for a few years -- playing the role that Dibble played on the 1990 team.
Guess who I voted for.
I have not given up on Maloney. I think the Reds had high expectations for Maloney this year, but he had a disastrous spring training. IIRC, he had two brutal starts. I recall that early on Dusty was complimentary concerning MM's fearlessness in pitching inside (unlike many other LHP.s). That can be problematic, though at the ML level if the pitch is not a plus pitch.
After a poor start at AAA, his numbers improved fairly dramatically over the second half. His HR's per nine however, were still among the highest on the staff. Shearn was slightly higher and Macbeth was much higher. HR/9 can be expected to increase at the ML level. Add to that fly ball tendencies and he does not currently project well. I concluded that he might still be a good starter if, like many LHP's, he could develop a pitch that breaks down and away (screwball) or sharply down and in (slider) to RH batters. It seems unlikely that he could find the extra speed to make an inside fastball effective.
I saw in another thread that MM planned to pitch winter ball. My guess is that he is working on this specific problem. I expect him to get at least one start in early March. We might know more then. Until then, I would be reluctant to rate him a top prospect.
I didn't vote last year. I admit, however, that I would have rated him higher then. Sometimes higher levels do expose weaknesses that require a little more work to correct.
Dorn would be my choice (for the 2nd time here)