I am very curious about the idea that he is sub-par behind the plate. Every scouting report I've read pre-draft ranks him as one of the elite defensive catchers in college baseball--including a strong throwing arm and great reflexes. The only real question defensively is his pop time. Having watched him play, I have to agree on all counts. Why the sudden thought that his defense is sub-par?
I think that the reasoning for the pick is quite simple. Catcher is a difficult position to fill. Catchers have a lot of value, especially if they can hit. And more so if they switch hit. Reds do have Mesoraco but have been thin at catcher in the organization.
I think that's probably the reasoning - Grandal's value is high because he plays a premium position on the field. Now let's sign him.
The Royals wanted him at 4, and the Indians wanted him at 5. It was only because they didn't like how he handled predraft negotiations that both of these teams passed on him, at least, according to ALL published reports.
BA, Keith Law, Frankie Pilerre, and just about every other scouting website had him ranked as the best catcher available and a top 20 player overall. So all of your talk about his sub-par scouting report is simply exaggeration at best and nonsense at worst. The fact that he speaks Spanish could be a hidden bonus, but he is no less than the 3rd Reds 1st round pick out of the last 11 years to be from Miami and of Cuban descent. The other two were drafted long before anyone had ever heard of Aroldis Chapman.
Besides, so what if Mesoraco or Hanigan catches Bailey and Leake (and Wood/Maloney/LeCure if/when they pitch) while Grandal ends up catching Cueto, Volquez, and Chapman?
From notorious Reds hater Keith Law's column today, by way of MLBTR:
Law felt that the Reds took the best player available at #12 in college catcher Yasmani Grandal, and having strong catching depth in the system will not be a bad thing.
As for other teams liking him well let's just say if it were someone with a better track record than the current KC and Cleveland regimes I might be swayed. Just to put this to rest let's just say I am leaning skeptical of this pick and would have liked someone else (several of them actually) with less downside and more upside. That doesn't mean I think he's a definite bust because again where I heard the negatives could be wrong. Why everyone is up in the air because I think his ability to communicate with Aroldis gave him a little more value to the Reds is a bit mind boggling. And the only reason I am arguing back is because others think it had nothing to do with it, that just doesn't make any sense to me.
As far as the scouting regime I'll give them extra credit (because I have given them credit where/when it's due) when they earn it. Personally I think they are a bit too conservative which is fine but every once in a while I'd like to see them go after a guy with 5 tool talent and develop them.
Again, FWIW, I was with you on Boxberger. I really wanted Tanner Scheppers (and so far, it looks like we were right on that one.) Not to say that the media scouting reports/projections are always correct (they certainly aren't), but they all had both Leake and Grandal projected to go where they did. They had Scheppers ranked much higher than Boxberger, although there were the obvious health questions related to Scheppers.
I'm not sure about this pick. I usually always lean towards the guys that do this for a living and see a kid countless times. This one though has me kind of baffled.
I would suggest that centering the ball and driving it is the most important thing a position player does. I don't see how anyone can watch the swing of Grandal and see a player that will drive the baseball. He just looks like he is swinging under water.
Hopefully it's a mechanical flaw or I"m just wrong.
This is the time. The real Reds organization is back.
There used to be whispers that Votto had a slow bat.I don't see how anyone can watch the swing of Grandal and see a player that will drive the baseball. He just looks like he is swinging under water.
All I know is that Grandal's numbers in 2010 verge on astronomical, and he's in a strong conference.
"Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini