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Thread: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

  1. #31
    Member mdccclxix's Avatar
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    Wonderful stuff redsof72

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  3. #32
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by redsof72 View Post
    Howington did not throw as hard as Stephenson, nor has anyone else the Reds have had for a long time (other than Chapman, of course). Stephenson can sit at 97 as a starting pitcher. Bailey was 92-95.
    Is Stephenson sitting that high? I don't doubt you, I just thought he was a tick or two lower than that (94-96 range). I love the kid, think he's the most exciting Reds pitching draft pick in ages.

    Wasn't Howington working 93-94 in 2001? Anyway, I brought him up mainly as a reminder that Howington had one heck of an arm before he got ruined. He might be the most criminally mismanaged pitching prospect of the early 21st century.

    Thanks for the stuff on Gullett and Nolan. I knew both had arms on loan from Olympus when they were young, but I didn't start watching until 1972 and really don't recall Gullett or Nolan much prior to 1975 (wee little me was fixated on the position players). For whatever reason, Pedro Borbon was the first Reds pitcher to make any real impression on me (probably because he pitched in every game).
    Last edited by M2; 01-11-2013 at 12:35 PM.
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  4. #33
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    Is Stephenson sitting that high? I don't doubt you, I just thought he was a tick or two lower than that (94-96 range). I love the kid, think he's the most exciting Reds pitching draft pick in ages.
    Stephenson was a little bit all over the place at times with his "sitting" velocity. There were times where he sat 92-94 and other games where he sat 95-98.

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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Stephenson...typically threw harder in the first inning than any subsequent inning and there were concerns that he was coming out of the bullpen too pumped up...his first inning with the Dayton team he threw a pitch that clocked in at 101 on the scoreboard gun. That stadium's gun would run a bit hot and recorded at 99 on scout's guns that I spoke with. I saw eight of his starts. He typically stayed in the 95-97 window, although he would usually pop one at 98. He could sit at 97 at times, though not consistently at that later point in the season (I had heard that he did sit at 97 earlier in the year in extended spring training). Again, Bailey, as a minor leaguer, was 92-95 primarily and would go a bit above or below. Others that I have seen who could get into the mid-90's would include Drew Hayes, Zach Stewart, the immortal Junior Martinez, Phil Valiquette, Donnie Joseph...there were others one step behind that group like Corcino, Ravin, Partch, Rogers, maybe Crabbe at times. I am leaving guys out and I can't speak to guys that threw harder at later times like Terrell Young and Ravin maybe. I never really saw Lotzkar when he was throwing his hardest but he would be in that class when healthy. But there has never been anyone like Stephenson, certainly not as a starter.
    Last edited by redsof72; 01-11-2013 at 02:51 PM.

  6. #35
    Member mdccclxix's Avatar
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by redsof72 View Post
    Stephenson...typically threw harder in the first inning than any subsequent inning and there were concerns that he was coming out of the bullpen too pumped up...his first inning with the Dayton team he threw a pitch that clocked in at 101 on the scoreboard gun. That stadium's gun would run a bit hot and recorded at 99 on scout's guns that I spoke with. I saw eight of his starts. He typically stayed in the 95-97 window, although he would usually pop one at 98. He could sit at 97 at times, though not consistently at that later point in the season (I had heard that he did sit at 97 earlier in the year in extended spring training). Again, Bailey, as a minor leaguer, was 92-95 primarily and would go a bit above or below. Others that I have seen who could get into the mid-90's would include Drew Hayes, Zach Stewart, the immortal Junior Martinez, Phil Valiquette, Donnie Joseph...there were others one step behind that group like Corcino, Ravin, Partch, Rogers, maybe Crabbe at times. I am leaving guys out and I can't speak to guys that threw harder at later times like Terrell Young and Ravin maybe. I never really saw Lotzkar when he was throwing his hardest but he would be in that class when healthy. But there has never been anyone like Stephenson, certainly not as a starter.
    Yet, everyone generally agrees he's #2 behind Billy Hamilton, do you think this is correct? I had a hard time with that pick.

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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by mdccclxix View Post
    Yet, everyone generally agrees he's #2 behind Billy Hamilton, do you think this is correct? I had a hard time with that pick.
    I think Stephenson has a better shot at being a truly elite player, but there's definitely some risk that goes along with being a 19 year old pitcher throwing 100MPH. Hamilton's basically a guaranteed useful player with considerable upside in his own right.

  8. #37
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    Without injury Gary Nolan might be in the Hall of Fame. Before he got hurt he had Ryanesque stuff.

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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by mdccclxix View Post
    Yet, everyone generally agrees he's #2 behind Billy Hamilton, do you think this is correct? I had a hard time with that pick.
    I think Hamilton is a clear #1 and Stephenson is a clear #2. Although, for me, Stephenson actually has the higher floor. Stephenson, barring injury, is going to pitch in the bigs. Don't know what he will develop into, but his arm is too good to be a guy who can't cut it. Other things beyond having a blazing fastball will determine his eventual level of usefulness, but at 95-97, he will have some kind of a role.

    Hamilton is the ultimate wildcard. He has a chance to be a special player. His impact could be such that he lifts a good team to greatness. If you saw the Future's Game and you saw the play where, with Billy on third, the opposing pitcher got all out of sync on a routine grounder to the mound and ended up throwing it down the right field line...that is Billy Hamilton. He will do things that no one else in the major leagues does. I am a tough sell and I saw it for a season. At the end of the year, in a conversation with DeShields, I said "despite what the stats may say, Hamilton was the MVP of the league this year if you are truly measuring the value he brought to his team." Delino agreed there was no doubt about it. This is a guy who hit .278 with three homers.

    At the same time, the reality is that you can't steal first base. You have to hit enough to justify your spot in the lineup. There is a chance that he will never do that. If he gets there and can never break .220, you can't use him. I think he will be a special player, but the reality is, his bat is not so impressive that you can say for sure that he will hit until he actually does it.

    Our number one prospect from one year ago hit .212 in the bigs in 2012 and ended up back in the minors. If he does that again in 2013, he is going to be looked at as an entirely different kind of prospect. My point is, with hitters, you don't know until it plays out.

    I remember, in 2000, a manager telling me that 20 year old Double-A outfielder Corey Patterson would be a total superstar and win multiple MVPs. Corey Patterson. The same year in the same league, Sean Burroughs, age 20, was thought by everyone to be a total lock to be a future all-star. He was hitting .290 in Double-A at age 20. Got to the bigs and couldn't hit.

  10. #39
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    This just came to my attention - as the stickied post in this forum indicates, do not post paid content.

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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by redsof72 View Post
    My point is, with hitters, you don't know until it plays out.
    With the caveat that all prospects can go wrong, hitters are a lot easier to project than pitchers. The roadside is littered with can't-miss pitching prospects who eventually missed.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

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  12. #41
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    With the caveat that all prospects can go wrong, hitters are a lot easier to project than pitchers. The roadside is littered with can't-miss pitching prospects who eventually missed.
    I would say the complete opposite. Pitching, unlike hitting, is a skill that can pretty much be evaluated against any competition. If a guy's pounding the zone at 95 and snapping off a plus breaking ball against rookie ball hitters, you know that's gonna play anywhere he goes. Hitting is tough to translate to different levels just because it's so interrelated to the pitching.

  13. #42
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by Superdude View Post
    I would say the complete opposite. Pitching, unlike hitting, is a skill that can pretty much be evaluated against any competition. If a guy's pounding the zone at 95 and snapping off a plus breaking ball against rookie ball hitters, you know that's gonna play anywhere he goes. Hitting is tough to translate to different levels just because it's so interrelated to the pitching.
    This really isn't an opinion on my part. The folks at BA will tell you flat out that hitters are less volatile. The number crunchers have done reviews of top prospect lists and the hitters generally turn out to be the safer bets.

    Here's a list of Reds top 100 hitting and pitching prospect during the past 20 years (according to BA):

    Pitchers

    Aroldis Chapman
    Homer Bailey
    Ryan Wagner
    Richie Gardner
    Bobby Basham
    Chris Gruler
    Ty Howington
    Rob Bell
    Scott Williamson
    Brett Tomko
    Johnny Ruffin
    John Roper
    Mo Sanford

    Hitters

    Billy Hamilton
    Devin Mesoraco
    Yonder Alonso
    Todd Frazier
    Jay Bruce
    Joey Votto
    Drew Stubbs
    Edwin Encarnacion
    Austin Kearns
    Wily Mo Pena
    Drew Henson
    Adam Dunn
    Gookie Dawkins
    Dane Sardinha
    David Espinosa
    Damian Jackson
    Pokey Reese
    Aaron Boone
    Chad Mottola
    Pat Watkins
    Willie Greene
    Reggie Sanders
    Steve Gibralter
    Dan Wilson

    Plenty of punchlines in those lists, but most of the hitters panned out to be every day starters in majors, most of the pitchers missed. A lot of that has to do with injuries, but that's why there's a TINSTAAPP acronym and not a TINSTAAHP acronym.

    Jonah Keri did a good article on the whole TINSTAAPP phenomenon last winter.
    Last edited by M2; 01-16-2013 at 01:34 PM.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  14. #43
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    This really isn't an opinion on my part. The folks at BA will tell you flat out that hitters are less volatile. The number crunchers have done reviews of top prospect lists and the hitters generally turn out to be the safer bets.
    Pitchers are no doubt more volatile, but I think you're taking it one step too far in assuming that means hitters can be projected easier. Hitters are naturally less volatile because they generally can't see their skills evaporate overnight like a pitcher can.

  15. #44
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by Superdude View Post
    Pitchers are no doubt more volatile, but I think you're taking it one step too far in assuming that means hitters can be projected easier. Hitters are naturally less volatile because they generally can't see their skills evaporate overnight like a pitcher can.
    If pitchers are more volatile, then by definition they are harder to project.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  16. #45
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    Re: 2013 Baseball America Reds Top 10

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    If pitchers are more volatile, then by definition they are harder to project.

    I guess projecting is the wrong word. Translating maybe? Pitching, as a fixed skill, is easier to gauge than hitting skill is IMO. Obviously pitchers are unique in that they can completely lose that skill, making them less projectable, but I still think the skill itself is easier to judge. For instance, all injury risk aside, I think Stephenson has a better chance of being an impact player than Hamilton does. We still have no idea how Hamilton's bat is going to adapt to big league pitchers who know every hole in his swing. Stephenson's stuff, if developed properly, is going to be extremely hard to hit no matter who's in the batters box.


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