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Thread: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

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    Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Sure we still have a week to go before the actual All-Star Game, but the big league team has been too depressing the last couple days to put this off any longer…

    As always, GRADE A indicates a player has a chance to be an all-star at the major league level, GRADE B indicates a player should be a starter at the major league level, and GRADE C indicates that a player has a decent shot to contribute in some form at the major league level. For those of you who like to follow Top 100 Prospect Lists, you can think of it this way: Grade A = 1-25 prospect in all of baseball; Grade B = should make Top 100 list; Grade C = Not on the Top 100 radar yet, but could be one day. Also as always, I do not like to rank guys who have yet to play at a full season level (A ball or above.) Mike Leake will be an exception to that rule, as most people believe he should be in Cincinnati by 2011. Finally, I do not rank anyone 25 or over. Without further ado...

    GRADE A

    1. Yonder Alonso 1B AA Setback by a broken hammate bone. Should finish the year in Carolina once he returns, and look to start in Louisville in 2010.
    (tie). Zack Stewart RHP AA Will pitch out of the pen in Louisville for the remainder of the year. Should be a fixture in Cincinnati one way or the other (rotation or pen) by this time next year.

    GRADE B

    3. Todd Frazier 3B/LF AA Should be playing 3B in Louisville. All he does is rake.
    4. Chris Heisey CF AAA Arrived in Louisville and has continued to hit. Playing alongside Stubbs, it will be interesting to watch them face the same pitching.
    5. Drew Stubbs CF AAA Looks to be breaking out of his prolonged slump. Should get a September call-up.
    6. Mike Leake* RHP Didn’t fall as much as others keep rising, despite poor showing in CWS. May not pitch again this season due to tendonitis/signing concerns.

    GRADE C

    7. Neftali Soto 3B A+ Don't forget about him- he could be the best hitter in the system after Alonso. Very young for his level. Could easily move up to Grade B with a strong 2nd half.
    8. Zack Cozart SS AA Has looked great so far this year, could be another fast riser. His glove is ML-ready and he's hitting well in Carolina, look for a promotion to AAA sometime before the end of the summer. With Valaika out of the way, he appears to be the lone internal candidate to man SS in Cincy for the next few years. Also could be Grade B by end of the year.
    9. Travis Wood LHP AA Been the best pitcher in the system this year after Stewart, you could make the argument for him being higher. Should be promoted any day now, not sure why it hasn’t happened yet (other than his age.)
    10. Juan Carlos Sulbaran RHP A+ Doing well for a 19 year old in Dayton, has great stuff, but as expected has been very inconsistent (see Sunday’s outing for an example.)
    11. Juan Francisco 3B AA Ranked here because still hasn't shown the plate discipline everyone's been hoping for. However power is there and defense is respectable at 3B.
    12. Chris Valaika 2B/SS/3B AAA His value has dropped after Sweet’s comments seem to indicate he won’t be a regular SS in the major leagues.
    13. Matt Fairel LHP A Has had some absolutely dominant outings. Probably belongs in Sarasota.
    14. Kevin Coddington C A Newcomer to the list has looked better offensively and defensively than Mesoraco, despite being at a lower level. Could potentially be another Hanigan-type find.
    15. Devin Mesoraco C A+ Ranked here based on pedigree alone. His numbers are poor in Sarasota although his peripherals and defense are improving. However, if he doesn’t start showing considerable improvement, he will probably fall off this list in the near future. Should repeat Sarasota next year.

    OTHERS TO WATCH

    Miguel Rojas SS A
    Alex Buchholz 2B/SS A+
    Brad Boxberger* RHP
    Josh Ravin RHP A
    Jeremy Horst LHP A+
    Alex Smit LHP AA


    KEEP AN EYE ON (too early to tell)
    Billy Hamilton SS R
    Yorman Rodriguez CF R
    Juan Duran OF R
    Shea Snowden LHP R
    Junior Arias SS DSL
    Humberto Valor SS VSL

    DON’T FORGET ABOUT (too old for prospect status)
    Matt Maloney LHP
    Sam LeCure RHP
    Ramon Ramirez RHP
    Pedro Viola LHP
    James Avery RHP
    Danny Dorn 1B/LF

    INJURED (done for the season)
    Daryl Thompson RHP AAA
    Bill Bray LHP AAA
    Dallas Buck RHP AA
    Kyle Lotzkar RHP A
    Evan Hildenbrandt R
    Ismael Guillon LHP R

    PROMOTIONS ON THE HORIZON (in order of neccessity)
    Frazier to AAA (and move back to 3B)
    Wood to AAA
    Fairel to A+
    Cozart to AAA

    SEPTEMBER CALL-UPS
    Stubbs
    Valaika
    Dorn
    Maloney
    LeCure
    Viola

    * unsigned
    Last edited by Benihana; 07-07-2009 at 06:37 PM.
    Go BLUE!!!

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    So, a player who played 4 years of College, graduating at 22, only has 2-1/2 seasons to make this list, otherwise he's considered washed up?

    Would love to see if any 25 year olds would be on this list.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    So, a player who played 4 years of College, graduating at 22, only has 2-1/2 seasons to make this list, otherwise he's considered washed up?

    Would love to see if any 25 year olds would be on this list.
    Not washed up, but they should certainly be knocking on the door to the majors by the time they're 25. Otherwise, they're not really a "prospect" anymore- at least by my definition anyway.

    Maloney and Viola might crack the bottom of this list (13-15 range), bur that's about it.
    Go BLUE!!!

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Dorn is 24. So is Stubbs.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    And Dorn? After a horrid April and May, he's been awesome over the past six weeks. Lifetime .513 slugging percentage. Plus he's still 24.
    "You can learn little from victory. You can learn everything from defeat."
    -- Christy Matthewson
    "Show me a good loser and I'll show you an idiot."
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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Your title says Top Prospects, so why have a Tier C indicates that a player has a decent shot to contribute in some form at the major league level?

    July of 2005 would have been Hanigan's last chance to be on this list, but a good percentage of people will argue that he should be the starting Catcher for the REDS right now. Dickerson's last year would have been July of 2006, and probably a majority of people would argue that he should be the starting CenterFielder for the REDS right now. That would put both of these players at Level B.

    There's also a big gap where a player, like a Dickerson or a Hanigan, will be a starter at the Major League level for only a year or two, and there's those who will be a starter at the Major League level for 7, 8, 9, 10 years, and never make an All-Star team. If you made that your level B, then Dickerson and Hanigan would be level C players, contributing somewhere at the Major League level, possibly starting for a year or two.

    Nice post, though Benihana. Well thought out and fun to read.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by GOYA View Post
    Dorn is 24. So is Stubbs.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
    And Dorn? After a horrid April and May, he's been awesome over the past six weeks. Lifetime .513 slugging percentage. Plus he's still 24.
    My fault- Dorn's age was an oversight.

    As for the list, however, I have said many times that Dorn IMO projects to a left-handed bat off the bench. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but he would not crack the Top 12 on my list. Like Maloney and Viola, he might fall into the 13-15 range. While he can certainly tee off against RHP, his defense is poor and he cannot hit left-handers.
    Go BLUE!!!

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Dorn will be 25 in two weeks.

    Nice list, B.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Stubbs and Heisey will both be 25 next season. If they are in AAA, should they be left off of prospect lists?

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by SMcGavin View Post
    Stubbs and Heisey will both be 25 next season. If they are in AAA, should they be left off of prospect lists?
    They won't be in AAA next year, and that's kinda the point.
    Go BLUE!!!

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    They won't be in AAA next year, and that's kinda the point.
    I have a good feeling at least one of them will be.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Have to say Beni, been agreeing more with your lists lately. Appreciate the write-up, nice job (and not just because I like the rankings!)

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Wiley keeps going yard, he'll be promoted

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    A
    Alonso - Hasn't disappointed except for his injury.

    A-
    Stewart - Has been great. Want to see how he handles being a starter next season.
    Cozart - Janish with a bat would be a huge addition to this team. May be the most intriguing prospect in the Reds system.

    B
    Frazier - Questions about his position land him down here. Hopefully he is the answer at 3b.
    Stubbs - Keeps on doing what he is supposed to do. If he develops HR power look out.
    Heisey - Interested to see how he progresses along side Stubbs. Can his bat play LF?
    Wood - Been dominant this year. Should be promoted to AAA soon.

    B-
    Soto - Has hit everywhere. Not too worried about a poor start in pitchers paradise.

    C
    Sulbaran - Still too young to make a accurate judgement.
    Francisco - If he learns plate discipline watch out.
    Valaika - Never underestimate the value of having good platoon players.
    Fairel -Has had some absolutely dominant outings. Probably belongs in Sarasota.
    Mesoraco - Based upon pedigree only. First round draft pick who is a HS C should be given plenty of time. Still not ready to make a decision on him.
    Leake - Will be down here until he signs and throws a handful of professional pitches.


    DON’T FORGET ABOUT
    Maloney - Spot starter/trade bait. Has some value, maybe not as much pitching in GABP but can hold his own.
    LeCure - Sinker ball pitcher and GABP go very nice together.
    Ramirez - Never underestimate the value of competent spot starting pitching
    Viola - No need to rush with Danny Ray and Rhodes.

    *edit*
    There are plenty of guys who are too young to fairly judge. Three that come to mind are Hamilton, Duran, and Rodriguez. I don't expect either of those guys to crack the list until this time next season. If they do they will be group A+ type players.

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    Re: Reds Top Prospects- Midseason Edition

    Thanks guys.

    After more consideration, I may push the age limit back up to 25 for next time. However, I am strong in my belief that there should be an age cap, despite the fact that some prospects may have a longer time line (eg Dickerson/Hanigan.) My response to guys like that is that they weren't really "prospects" in the traditional sense to begin with.

    On the other hand, Stubbs and Heisey are obviously prospects. If either one is still toiling in the minors in 2011 (which would make them 26), I will no longer consider them to be "Top Prospects." Hence the age limit.

    Most high schoolers get drafted when they are 18, giving them seven full seasons to make the majors before they begin losing some of their prospect luster. Most college players get drafted at age 21, giving them 4-5 years. While some players will surely take longer to develop, I think that's a fair time frame to give someone before you start questioning whether or not they still deserve "Top Prospect" status. Obviously, a guy like Humberto Valor will have nine years worth of mention- we'll surely be sick of hearing his name by then, at least in this forum.
    Go BLUE!!!


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