Christopher Crawford posted on ESPN about the big pitching matchups this weekend.
I already pointed out the Beebe-Nola matchup, but he also mentioned that Rodon is going up against Luke Weaver of Florida St. Weaver has had a good season so far, and it now being mentioned as a mid-first round pick. I'm intrigued by this matchup for two reasons:
1) Is Rodon in play for the Twins at #5? Rodon is starting to lose steam as the consensus 1-1 pick, which means there is a higher likelihood that he will be available for the Twins at #5. Until now I had just assumed he would be gone by #5 and hadn't paid much attention. Now I'm paying attention, though I'm not sure how I feel about rooting for a player to be bad enough so the Twins can draft him.
2) How does Trae Turner perform against top pitching? Weaver is first round material, so it will be a good test for Turner. I know that I shouldn't draw any conclusions from a single game, but if he looks overmatched I can't but take that as a major negative.
As I have said before about Turner vis-a-vis great shortstop defenders. If a college shortstop is truly a GREAT fielder (Marc Belanger like) I do not think MLB teams should give any consideration at all to their hitting. And many learn on the job about hitting, Ozzie Smith sure did okay in that regard. Good MLB teams rely on their big guns for hitting not their shortstops. If Turner is GREAT by these standards there is not doubt in my mind at all about making him your first pick this coming June if he is available. If he isn't in that category then pass.
BA article on big lefty Sean Newcomb:
I respect KLaw, but Nola was great last night against Vanderbilt and Beede was too. Nola struck out 12. He may not seem as 'flashy' but he already knows how to pitch and has great command.
He may not have the high ceiling of a 220-240 K pitcher in MLB, but what if he could be a Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux, Brad Radke, Dave Steib, etc type.
Either way...love that Rodon may be falling and also that there might be a LOT of good pitching prospects available this year.
I like the college pitchers this year more than most. And it seems the depth would extend well into the 2nd round.
Also, how many teams are forfeiting their 1st RD pick?
I wonder if the way the compensation breaks down if our 2nd RD pick would be higher or lower than without the signings.
I found this link...
what are "competitive balance" picks?
I would think the Twins should get 5 or 6 of those.
You have to pick the guy with the most tools, not just the tool you like best. And personally I would care about defense much less than the hit or power tool.
He's striking out 12.9 per 9 innings so far against elite college competition. (33.2 IP, 48 SO)
Maybe Nola is more like a Johan Santana (only 92 MPH) but with more strikeouts. Maybe...
I understand the logic, as these guys had less risk of becoming a bust, but you're not going to get your ace if you take a "safe" pitcher outside of the top five. Everyone knew Wimmers was going to the Twins because they liked "safe" pitchers. He was said to be the guy likely to be quickest to the majors. So why didn't every other team jump at him? Because he had very little upside and that was more important to other teams
Look at all the HS arms the Twins passed up playing it safe that year. Tijuan Walker, Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard, Jesse Biddle and Zack Lee were all picked after Wimmers and the end of the first round. You can't play the draft pick hindsight game, but you can play the draft strategy hindsight game. The Twins were conservative, that's not just my view, that was the view of nearly everyone who projected the guy with the most MLB ready control would fall all the way to the Twins at 21 and that they would take him.
I agree though, I think that strategy has been revised, and I for one am happy. Saying that, I don't think there's any chance Nola is the pick at #5 unless he gains some velocity and starts to profile as an ace.
My opinion is that the Twins had a pretty decent strategy for a bit (and the WAR value of the players they drafted over time holds up pretty well). They used BPA in the first round, which was usually a position player, and focused on and then grabbed underrated guys - usually guys with lower velocity but strong control - in later rounds that would help out. In any event, the Johnson drafts have not produced any pitching for the Twins yet.
Anyone able to find stats on Michael Gettys?
edit: Or Braxton Davidson?
edit: OK for Davidson:
Braxton Davidson, OF/1B, Roberson HS (NC)
At 6’-3” and 220 pounds, the left-handed hitting Davidson is already a beast. His power and advanced approach from the left side will land him in the first round of the 2014 MLB draft. His strong arm (92 mph from outfield) would play well in a corner outfield spot, although some believe he could end up at first base where he could be a plus defender. Over five games this season, he has gone 11-for-16 (.688) with four doubles and a home run, and he has yet to strike out. He has shown off his arm by striking out 20 over 10 shutout innings on the mound, allowing just one hit. Committed to North Carolina.
Sheesh, Michael Chavis is crushing:
Michael Chavis, 3B, Sprayberry HS (GA)
Chavis just continues to mash. The 5’-11”, 190 pound right-hander went 3-for-3 with two more home runs on March 14, upping his total to six over his first 11 games. He is also hitting .656/.738/1.344 with a 2.082 OPS, four doubles and nine stolen bases. He is playing shortstop now, but with his tremendous power, should make a move over to third base where his arm, glove and footwork will play well. Committed to Clemson.
Chavis is also playing SS this year. Whether his glove is any good, I have no idea.
There are a couple of new draft reports up on ESPN. Both have a lot of good nuggets about the prospects that we've been discussing for the Twins at #5. They are both Insider pieces, but here are the highlights:
He reviews the big pitching matchups from the past weekend. 3 items of note:
1) Rodon wasn't great. Yes, 12 strikeouts were nice, but he also walked 4 and needed 125 pitches to get through 6 2/3 innings.
2) Kolek is rising.
3) Turner is falling.Quote:
"I've heard people say [Turner] is a top-five lock, and I just don't get it," an AL crosschecker said. "That's not to say that I don't like him as a player, I think he's going to be a starter at the big-league level and he's certainly a first-rounder. I just don't see how you take him over a guy like Alex Jackson or Jacob Gatewood or any of the big pitchers.
He watched Alex Jackson play this weekend. This post was primarily a scouting report, with analysis of his swing mechanics and other skills. Most interesting item is that he thinks Jackson will not stick at catcher and ultimately move to left or right.
Law is planning on watching Brady Aiken tonight, who has some serious helium after hitting 97 last week.