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Thread: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

  1. #1
    Member Bourgeois Zee's Avatar
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    Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    Simple question:

    Which Reds' prospect has, in your opinion, helped himself the most with his production this season?

    Show your work, please.

    My top five:

    1. Graham Ashcraft, SP
    Ashcraft, IMO, has come the farthest in terms of where he was and where he is currently. Before this season, he was a maybe-he-will relief arm. Now, he's solidly in the mix as a MOR starter who's nearly ready to pitch in the majors (and might be really good in the 'pen by mid-season if they need him). Ashcraft's 3.0 BB rate is especially nice to see, as his other numbers are all very good. 3.00 ERA (between High A and AA), 7.0 H/9, 10.5 K/9, 1.108 WHiP. Those are more than solid when added to his scouting report-- which details a fastball with lots of spin and a quality slider, not to mention a burgeoning change.

    2. Elly De La Cruz, SS
    De La Cruz is a top 100 prospect who burst on the scene. Why doesn't he get the top spot? Largely because I have serious reservations about his approach. It helps that Ashcraft has blossomed at a higher league as well. But De La Cruz does have upside that's unmatched on this list. A possible 900 OPS SS with plus speed and power? Yes, please. Two levels and holding his own in low A at 19? Of the 11 guys under age 20 in low A, De La Cruz ranked third in OPS, second in slugging... and last in OBP.

    3. Allan Cerda, OF
    Cerda is a sneaky prospect, IMO. He's much like De La Cruz or even Rece Hinds, in that he's got power for days but doesn't hit for a very high average. What he seems to do far better than the other two, however, is take a walk. His 11.4 BB% is outstanding and while his K% is still very high, he's showing signs of better pitch recognition and fixing some holes in his swing. His High A totals (in only 87 PAs) show a better hitter than his time in the Florida State League did. (Which makes a lot of sense, knowing what we know about that particular league.) His 136 wRC+ marks Cerda as a guy with intriguing tools, and his .273/ .356/ .519 High A line should mean at least a casual mention as one to watch moving forward. IMO, Cerda's at the front of a rather weak Red prospect OF class.

    4. Ivan Johnson, SS
    Johnson could well have been on his way to journeyman status. With Cincinnati drafting Matt McLain and Jose Torres and the emergence of Elly De La Cruz, Johnson could have ended up a footnote between better prospects. But he kept hitting. And hitting. And hitting. Johnson doesn't have the pedigree of McLain or the new-car-smell of Torres. But he's just as young, and he's put up a seasonal line of .264/ .367/ .451/ .817 as a middle infielder. He's at least going to get a look moving forward. He'll have to prove himself as a SS (or more likely, as a utility guy), but Johnson's got bat enough to provide some value.

    5. Dauri Moreta, RP
    Moreta was, at best, a suspect before this season. Then he decided to just not allow anyone to score on him. Despite a more than solid season in Daytona in 2019 and a decent Arizona Fall League, he was just an arm in a system full of them. Now, after a 1.35 42-game, 53 IP minor league season, Moreta looks like a guy who might be a solid middle relief arm. He's been forgotten in the past, but he might be more than acceptable moving forward. That's a bunch more than what was expected at the beginning of the season.

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  4. #2
    Member mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bourgeois Zee View Post
    Simple question:

    Which Reds' prospect has, in your opinion, helped himself the most with his production this season?

    Show your work, please.

    My top five:

    1. Graham Ashcraft, SP
    Ashcraft, IMO, has come the farthest in terms of where he was and where he is currently. Before this season, he was a maybe-he-will relief arm. Now, he's solidly in the mix as a MOR starter who's nearly ready to pitch in the majors (and might be really good in the 'pen by mid-season if they need him). Ashcraft's 3.0 BB rate is especially nice to see, as his other numbers are all very good. 3.00 ERA (between High A and AA), 7.0 H/9, 10.5 K/9, 1.108 WHiP. Those are more than solid when added to his scouting report-- which details a fastball with lots of spin and a quality slider, not to mention a burgeoning change.

    2. Elly De La Cruz, SS
    De La Cruz is a top 100 prospect who burst on the scene. Why doesn't he get the top spot? Largely because I have serious reservations about his approach. It helps that Ashcraft has blossomed at a higher league as well. But De La Cruz does have upside that's unmatched on this list. A possible 900 OPS SS with plus speed and power? Yes, please. Two levels and holding his own in low A at 19? Of the 11 guys under age 20 in low A, De La Cruz ranked third in OPS, second in slugging... and last in OBP.

    3. Allan Cerda, OF
    Cerda is a sneaky prospect, IMO. He's much like De La Cruz or even Rece Hinds, in that he's got power for days but doesn't hit for a very high average. What he seems to do far better than the other two, however, is take a walk. His 11.4 BB% is outstanding and while his K% is still very high, he's showing signs of better pitch recognition and fixing some holes in his swing. His High A totals (in only 87 PAs) show a better hitter than his time in the Florida State League did. (Which makes a lot of sense, knowing what we know about that particular league.) His 136 wRC+ marks Cerda as a guy with intriguing tools, and his .273/ .356/ .519 High A line should mean at least a casual mention as one to watch moving forward. IMO, Cerda's at the front of a rather weak Red prospect OF class.

    4. Ivan Johnson, SS
    Johnson could well have been on his way to journeyman status. With Cincinnati drafting Matt McLain and Jose Torres and the emergence of Elly De La Cruz, Johnson could have ended up a footnote between better prospects. But he kept hitting. And hitting. And hitting. Johnson doesn't have the pedigree of McLain or the new-car-smell of Torres. But he's just as young, and he's put up a seasonal line of .264/ .367/ .451/ .817 as a middle infielder. He's at least going to get a look moving forward. He'll have to prove himself as a SS (or more likely, as a utility guy), but Johnson's got bat enough to provide some value.

    5. Dauri Moreta, RP
    Moreta was, at best, a suspect before this season. Then he decided to just not allow anyone to score on him. Despite a more than solid season in Daytona in 2019 and a decent Arizona Fall League, he was just an arm in a system full of them. Now, after a 1.35 42-game, 53 IP minor league season, Moreta looks like a guy who might be a solid middle relief arm. He's been forgotten in the past, but he might be more than acceptable moving forward. That's a bunch more than what was expected at the beginning of the season.
    Good list. I'd probably sub Lorenzo Cedrola for Moreta. Not a believer in minor league relievers.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

  5. #3
    Member Bourgeois Zee's Avatar
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    Re: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    Good list. I'd probably sub Lorenzo Cedrola for Moreta. Not a believer in minor league relievers.
    Good call on Cedrola. I suspect he's going to end up at least a fourth or fifth OF who can play all three OF spots.

    That has uses.

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  7. #4
    Daffy Duck RedTeamGo!'s Avatar
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    Re: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    It’s definitely Ashcraft. De La Cruz is still really far away from the majors and has a lot of K in his bat. Like you said, BZ, Ashcraft went from a maybe/fringe prospect to a guy that will very likely see the majors soon. Also the name Graham Ashcraft sounds like a Science Fiction author’s name, so he gets bonus points for that.
    What would you say.....ya do here?

  8. #5
    15 game winner Danny Serafini's Avatar
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    Re: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    Ashcraft had that insane run, but he cooled off considerably afterward. His ERA over his last eight starts was 4.95. He certainly helped himself no doubt, but there's still work to be done.

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    BillDoran (09-28-2021),Old school 1983 (09-29-2021)

  10. #6
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    Re: Who's Helped Himself the Most?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bourgeois Zee View Post
    Simple question:

    Which Reds' prospect has, in your opinion, helped himself the most with his production this season?

    Show your work, please.

    My top five:

    1. Graham Ashcraft, SP
    Ashcraft, IMO, has come the farthest in terms of where he was and where he is currently. Before this season, he was a maybe-he-will relief arm. Now, he's solidly in the mix as a MOR starter who's nearly ready to pitch in the majors (and might be really good in the 'pen by mid-season if they need him). Ashcraft's 3.0 BB rate is especially nice to see, as his other numbers are all very good. 3.00 ERA (between High A and AA), 7.0 H/9, 10.5 K/9, 1.108 WHiP. Those are more than solid when added to his scouting report-- which details a fastball with lots of spin and a quality slider, not to mention a burgeoning change.

    2. Elly De La Cruz, SS
    De La Cruz is a top 100 prospect who burst on the scene. Why doesn't he get the top spot? Largely because I have serious reservations about his approach. It helps that Ashcraft has blossomed at a higher league as well. But De La Cruz does have upside that's unmatched on this list. A possible 900 OPS SS with plus speed and power? Yes, please. Two levels and holding his own in low A at 19? Of the 11 guys under age 20 in low A, De La Cruz ranked third in OPS, second in slugging... and last in OBP.

    3. Allan Cerda, OF
    Cerda is a sneaky prospect, IMO. He's much like De La Cruz or even Rece Hinds, in that he's got power for days but doesn't hit for a very high average. What he seems to do far better than the other two, however, is take a walk. His 11.4 BB% is outstanding and while his K% is still very high, he's showing signs of better pitch recognition and fixing some holes in his swing. His High A totals (in only 87 PAs) show a better hitter than his time in the Florida State League did. (Which makes a lot of sense, knowing what we know about that particular league.) His 136 wRC+ marks Cerda as a guy with intriguing tools, and his .273/ .356/ .519 High A line should mean at least a casual mention as one to watch moving forward. IMO, Cerda's at the front of a rather weak Red prospect OF class.

    4. Ivan Johnson, SS
    Johnson could well have been on his way to journeyman status. With Cincinnati drafting Matt McLain and Jose Torres and the emergence of Elly De La Cruz, Johnson could have ended up a footnote between better prospects. But he kept hitting. And hitting. And hitting. Johnson doesn't have the pedigree of McLain or the new-car-smell of Torres. But he's just as young, and he's put up a seasonal line of .264/ .367/ .451/ .817 as a middle infielder. He's at least going to get a look moving forward. He'll have to prove himself as a SS (or more likely, as a utility guy), but Johnson's got bat enough to provide some value.

    5. Dauri Moreta, RP
    Moreta was, at best, a suspect before this season. Then he decided to just not allow anyone to score on him. Despite a more than solid season in Daytona in 2019 and a decent Arizona Fall League, he was just an arm in a system full of them. Now, after a 1.35 42-game, 53 IP minor league season, Moreta looks like a guy who might be a solid middle relief arm. He's been forgotten in the past, but he might be more than acceptable moving forward. That's a bunch more than what was expected at the beginning of the season.
    Good list, but don't sleep on my boy Rece Hinds, who finally showed what he's capable of when healthy, and with his strong performance pulled ahead of his injured fellow 2019 infielder Tyler Callihan. Hinds, De La Cruz, and Cerda were the three biggest bright spots among hitters in the organization. Johnson (who I like) had a nice year but hard to see him being more than a utility guy, as he's (at least) a couple years older than the other three.

    I also share mth's view in not ascribing any value to minor league relievers. This forum has been fooled too many times with those.
    Go BLUE!!!


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