"You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one."
Last year, it was reported that Sappelt had a weak arm, but that an injury was suspected. Can anyone provide an update?
No doubt a "ceiling" is a very real thing, but us pretending to know it for a given player is not realistic. There are too many factors that go into baseball that can't be measured on a tools' sheet.
Last edited by RedsFanInBama; 08-01-2010 at 10:15 PM.
On the flip side of that, players with higher ceilings don't need to fulfill all of their potential to help a team; Drew Stubbs is an excellent example of that. He's so naturally gifted that his inability to make contact doesn't stop him from being a very valuable player. However, if he ever reaches his ceiling, look out--he'll be a major superstar.
"He looked like a surfer kid from SoCal," manager Dusty Baker says. "He didn't say much, but you could tell he was cool."
Ceilings can of course change. Guys can make changes in their swings that can change their skillsets. They can improve their diet/nutrition/work ethic to improve their body type, position and even speed.
Here is the main thing with Sappelt, as he has always been a fast guy with excellent range in CF who makes a lot of contact.... is the power improvement this year for real, or a by product of the stadiums he has been playing in? At home, his power is in line with where it has been for his career. On the road, its real good (.216 IsoP). If the power increase is legit, then he is showing an improved tool, one that no one really thought was as good as it is. That really is the only thing that has changed in his game. He isn't striking out less and while his walks are up a little bit, its not even a full percent better than it was in Dayton last season.
As you're aware, center fielders don't require the same offensive output as corner outfielders. I don't have the numbers in front of me, but I believe corner outfielders are generally expected to have an OPS around .810 while center fielders are expected to have an OPS around .760. Will Sappelt ever have the power needed to justify putting him in a corner outfield position everyday? Heck no. But I see him as an 8-12 HR guy with an OPS around .780-.790 in his prime, which is pretty impressive--especially someone with a 5'8" frame.
Last edited by RedsFanInBama; 08-02-2010 at 02:16 PM.