Obviously opinions can change daily.
Obviously opinions can change daily.
I don't know... Knowing the Twins, if Clint Frazier is still available at number 4, I just cannot see them pass...
(of course it is still way too early to even think about draft. Give it a good 2-3 months for the High School and College seasons to start and for injuries to happen etc...)
Gotta like Appel if he's available. I can't imagine the guy holding out and ending up playing Independent Ball for a year. If he does it a second time I can't see any team wasting a high pick on him the following year. That said he'll go for slot at least, I just can't see him being unreasonable like he was this past year.
The best thing about him is that he'll likely move fast through the system to join the other guys that should be ready by 2014. We could easily be looking at a 2014 rotation made up of some combo Meyer, May, Gibson, Appel(at some point), Diamond, Hendriks, Worley. That's not including guys like BJ Hermsen and Alex Wimmers who have a shot to be right there with a good year. That's a nice group to have fighting for rotations spots come 2014 and 2015.
It will be interesting to see how the next couple of months shake out. Right now the draft is about 3 very good college pitchers and a few toolsy OF'ers. At this point the pitchers have to be at the very top of the list but the Twins pick #4.
It would be interesting to know if the new CBA did away with inserting a first season MLB call up similar to Chris Sale a few years ago. As far as I know it didn't. I know they got rid of MLB contracts stretching the bonus over a number of seasons but I'm unsure if a mandatory call up was also eliminated. It's one area that agents can still game the system or at least even the field against GMs gaming service time.
Don't forget that the Twins can then trade guys like that in their 4th or 5th seasons for a big haul, as the A's have shown in some of their deals.
Anyone who drafts for needs and doesn't take the best player on the board in any sport is making a mistake most of the time. In baseball, where so many draft picks are traded, take years to surface at the mlb level and are far from sure things no matter who you draft, is making a mistake every time! You would be stupid not to take the player you believe has the best odds of being an impact MLB player regardless of the position the pro level needs. Putting more emphasis on the position they play is OK. In other words a SS, LHP starter, CF, or C would be OK to consider over a corner outfielder, corner infielder or a RH relief pitcher for example if they are equal odds to be an impact player but what the team needs in 4 or 5 years will likely change and that player could always be traded for a King's ransom if it turns out that the unlikely result is that you have two superstars at the same position. Just land the superstar. You never know what your team will look like when this player is ready. Just take the best player when everything is considered except for your MLB needs.
Great write-up, thanks for the pre-draft info.
First Buxton, then possibly Appel??? I've no clue who's in the 2014 draft but the Twins are raking in amazing prospects. Appel just fits so perfectly with our group of top prospects a year or two away from Minnesota. This is exactly what we need is to graduate a group of prospects to play together in Minnesota for the next 6 years. I really don't care that our rotation will be almost completely RHPs and I think it actually plays better to Target Field since RF's more difficult to hit HR's than LF. If the Twins have to go a bit over slot to sign Appel, I'd say do it, we'll kick ourselves later if we don't.
Gunn: The Twins will have a few different strategies they could choose from. One would be saving money like the Astros did last year. I don't think it would be their top choice, but something they considered (it's alluded to in my interview with Sean Johnson).
Big City: The 2014 top prospects right now are LHP Carlos Rodon, NC State and C Alex Jackson, CA HS. There are also two other highly-regarded college pitchers - Tyler Beede, Vanderbilt and Nick Burdi, Louisville. The Twins took Burdi out of high school.
Mark Appel may be a Scott Boras client, but he'd also be the best starting pitcher in the Twins organization the moment he set foot on the Target Field grass. His mechanics remind me of Mariano Rivera, with an incredibly direct transfer of power from body to baseball. He looks like he could dominate the league for a decade. Draft him and pay him, like Mauer. He's not just a horse, he's a derby winner.
The whole boras/appel thing is way over blown. If the twins rank him as the best talent at 4 and he is there, take him. Just like last year with Buxton the twins need to take the best player available regardless of position/agent.
At this point I'm really not that high on any of the top three pitchers. I prefer gausman last year to any of them but wouldn't be disappointed if the twins took one at 4. If Bryant can prove he is a 3b and not a 1b he gets my vote. I love his power.
This is about taking the best player available. Do not compromise or mess this up.
If boras/appel are asking for an irrational number he can go to the independent league. Just like he went back to college this year. It is Boras' job to get Appel the money he is asking for and it is the job of our scouts to figure out if they can sign him or not. As fans we hate the business side of baseball but it is part of the game.
I don't feel bad for the pirates organization at all. They didn't think Appel would be there and never talked to boras beforehand about his demands before taking him. That's on their front office. Do I feel bad for the fan base? Definitely. Tallion/Cole/appel would be a nasty 1-2-3 punch.
Boras obviously did talk to some teams about what kind of salary he wanted, that's why everyone knew Appel was going to try to eat up nearly all of a teams draft allowence. Pittsburgh took a chance that Appel would tell his agent to go die and accept the best offer they could make instead of going back to school and risk it. Pittsburgh knew what Boras was asking for, they thought they'd take a gamble, it didn't work.
Boras is bad for baseball, advising young men like Appel to make obscene demands and then if they don't get it, go back to school or play independant ball. It's a huge risk for the player but hardly any sweat for Boras. Betting $6 million dollars is nothing for a filthy rich dirtball like Boras, but he's talked a guy who has nothing into taking the gamble.