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Thread: Sickels: Top 20 Twins prospects for 2014

  1. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
    Once again...Jorge Polanco out-slugs Travis Harrison. Walker out-slugged him by a wide margin. My question for Mr. Sickels: Why rank Harrison higher than Walker? one year younger?

    THanks
    Polanco out slugged him, sure, but that was solely b/c of his higher batting avg. Harrison had the higher ISO power. Both are fun prospects to have. My guess is that Harrison's ceiling is still higher even if Polanco probably had the better year.

  2. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnarthor View Post
    Polanco out slugged him, sure, but that was solely b/c of his higher batting avg. Harrison had the higher ISO power. Both are fun prospects to have. My guess is that Harrison's ceiling is still higher even if Polanco probably had the better year.
    Makes sense. I think Harrison has a very high ceiling.

    But my question was about why Walker was ranked lower than Harrison? Polanco's ISO power (144) is slightly lower than Harrison's (163). But Walker's ISO power (248) cannot be ignored. Even if he is a year older than Travis.

  3. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
    Makes sense. I think Harrison has a very high ceiling.

    But my question was about why Walker was ranked lower than Harrison? Polanco's ISO power (144) is slightly lower than Harrison's (163). But Walker's ISO power (248) cannot be ignored. Even if he is a year older than Travis.
    Walker is going to struggle with these rankings as long as he has trouble getting on base in Low A ball. I think we all love his power but he's not going anywhere if he can't learn to take a walk from a bunch of 20-year-old pitchers who have trouble consistantly hitting the strike zone. He was the league leader in HR by 30% yet only had an OBP of .319. That is a monsterous red flag.

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Sickels View Post
    Thorpe vs. Jorge: I like them both, but my understanding is that Thorpe's mechanics are cleaner than Jorge's, which are somewhat high-effort. Some observers feel that Jorge may be better suited for the bullpen as a result, but everyone seems to think Thorpe can start. The B- and high ranking for Thorpe is aggressive and when all is said and done I might move him a slot behind Pinto, but sometimes you just get a feeling about a guy, and I have that about Thorpe. The numbers were great, the scouting reports are increasingly impressive, and I've heard more than one source say that he would be a certain first round pick heading into 2014 if he had been born in the US.
    Thanks! This is exactly what I was wondering earlier.

  5. #85
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    Kramer's buddy Bob Sacamanto posted a video he took of Jorge at the FIL.

    Felix Jorge - YouTube

    That delivery stinks. Doesn't use his lower half, tiny stride toward home and all the effort is in his shoulder.

    The Twins don't seem to instruct (or sign) pitchers who take long strides (which usually limits velocity) but I'm surprised the Twins haven't changed this delivery yet.

  6. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
    Walker is going to struggle with these rankings as long as he has trouble getting on base in Low A ball. I think we all love his power but he's not going anywhere if he can't learn to take a walk from a bunch of 20-year-old pitchers who have trouble consistantly hitting the strike zone. He was the league leader in HR by 30% yet only had an OBP of .319. That is a monsterous red flag.
    My question for Prospects in general is: Do they feel a sense of obligation to drive in runs and ignore OBP at the lower levels if not stressed as much? I'm speaking particularly for power hitters? I think the the OBP can easily be adjusted when coaches emphasize it as a priority. His OBP wasn't the greatest when Buxton was there early in season, but probably took another hit when he had to be more RBI mindful after the big 3 left at mid season. The Kernels were not particularly great at driving in RBIs after the big 3 left either. He was their RBIs. The question then becomes - What was his role and did he do what was asked?................. His OBP in college was .400 (FR) / .486 (SO) / & .426 (JR) respectively. It was even higher against the better competition he faced in college. Just saying not that monsterous if you see the whole picture.

  7. #87
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    John Sickels in the house!

    That was pretty illuminating in many ways. I really like the comments about Thorpe.

    With regard to Walker and Harrison . . . Harrison certainly the capacity to develop into a pretty good OBP guy. Walker is lacking there, though the slugging makes up for a lot of that. I still don't really understand why the Twins didn't push Walker to get a month or so at Fort Myers, though. That might have given us a somewhat clearer picture.

  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    My question for Prospects in general is: Do they feel a sense of obligation to drive in runs and ignore OBP at the lower levels if not stressed as much? I'm speaking particularly for power hitters? I think the the OBP can easily be adjusted when coaches emphasize it as a priority. His OBP wasn't the greatest when Buxton was there early in season, but probably took another hit when he had to be more RBI mindful after the big 3 left at mid season. The Kernels were not particularly great at driving in RBIs after the big 3 left either. He was their RBIs. The question then becomes - What was his role and did he do what was asked?................. His OBP in college was .400 (FR) / .486 (SO) / & .426 (JR) respectively. It was even higher against the better competition he faced in college. Just saying not that monsterous if you see the whole picture.
    The problem is that this plate discipline doesn't typically improve. Typically it gets worse due to pitchers with much better secondary offerings. The other problem with your RBI theory is that hitters that swing at bad pitches because they are trying to drive in runs are going to keep doing that as they move up in the minors.

    Regarding some other posts about Walker vs Harrison: We have been through this before. It's not Walker's age that is the issue but rather that he played 3 yrs of college ball so he should be more advanced than HS kids almost the same age. Walker is definitely intriguing but poor plate discipline and play in low A ball prevent him from being ranked really high despite his nice power.

    Additionally I like Polanco more than Harrison but that is more due to defensive value and Polanco's ability to make contact. It was nice to see some pop from him but I don't expect much power as he moves up. However he looks like a potential .285/.335/.385 MLB hitter. With solid defense that is an average to above average MI'er. Harrison has a sweet swing but his K's and modest power stats keep him from being ranked in my top 10.

  9. #89
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    I think another thing to keep in mind when discussing Walker vs. Harrison is that this was both players first go at full season ball. Through the first 90 games of the season the two were almost identical players. Walker had a .870 OPS and Harrison an .869. Harrison walked a bit more and Walker hit for a little more power but overall they were very similar offensively.

    Over the remaining 45 games though things went very differently. Walker finished up nicely, OPS'ing .794. On the other hand Harrison fell off a cliff OPS'ing only .595. His BB% and K% stayed pretty much the same but his BA and especially his SLG% disappeared. Over his last 41 games Harrison hit only 4 doubles and no HR's. To me that suggests that he hit a wall and just couldn't put any power into his swing. If he was really struggling with his mechanics or if pitchers had caught up to him his K% would have increased and his BB% would have decreased significantly, but they didn't.

    If you make the assumption that the first 90 games are the real Harrison (and Walker too, though he didn't really struggle much towards the end of the season) then you're left with two very similar players. However, like others have said, Harrison walked 12% of the time and Walker only 6%. Combine that with the fact that Harrison is a full year younger and played no college ball and while I think they're pretty close, Harrison probably should be ranked slightly higher.

  10. #90
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    Thorpe's numbers at GCL for a 17 year old are ridiculous. He it up and I can see why he'd give him a higher ranking. Not solely based on his 44IP, however. 5 mph more on his fastball is very significant and perhaps he'll add even more to it. A lefty with big upside is very valuable. I like the Stewart over Meyer decision. Given a choice between the two, I'd rather have Stewart.

    I really can't disagree with anything in this, but I think it's about that time where Harrison should slip a little bit until he can prove himself.

  11. #91
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    Harrison neither stumbled nor excelled this season. It was a nice season and scouts love his swing but questions remain. Looking at John's rankings, there is not anyone below him that I would move up above him.

    He kind of reminds me of this guy - Matt Davidson - Matt Davidson » Statistics » Batting | FanGraphs Baseball - A HS 3Bman with questionable defense and a good bat that hasn't failed nor dominated yet.

  12. #92
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    Thanks for coming by, john. Love your work.
    Lighten up Francis....

  13. #93
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    For those wondering about Lewis Thorpe (and I'll admit - this guy totally snuck up on me), check out his Adopt-A-Prospect page here:

    http://twinsdaily.com/adopt-prospect...is-thorpe.html

    Shout out to 2Twins87 who has done a really nice job on this page, including video from a Melbourne TV station when he signed, updates from his minor league season and even an update from the World Cup tournament in Taiwan. Outstanding stuff.

  14. #94
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    monstrous

  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by YourHouseIsMyHouse View Post
    Thorpe's numbers at GCL for a 17 year old are ridiculous. He it up and I can see why he'd give him a higher ranking. Not solely based on his 44IP, however. 5 mph more on his fastball is very significant and perhaps he'll add even more to it. A lefty with big upside is very valuable. I like the Stewart over Meyer decision. Given a choice between the two, I'd rather have Stewart.

    I really can't disagree with anything in this, but I think it's about that time where Harrison should slip a little bit until he can prove himself.
    I really wonder if Thorpe will get to skip Elizabethon altogether and start in CR. With that added velocity, his handedness, and his age, he could be a top 100 prospect next year if he does well in Cedar Rapids. Scary thing is that at that age, he could still add a few ticks.

  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Bonnes View Post
    For those wondering about Lewis Thorpe (and I'll admit - this guy totally snuck up on me), check out his Adopt-A-Prospect page here:

    http://twinsdaily.com/adopt-prospect...is-thorpe.html

    Shout out to 2Twins87 who has done a really nice job on this page, including video from a Melbourne TV station when he signed, updates from his minor league season and even an update from the World Cup tournament in Taiwan. Outstanding stuff.
    It's because you don't spend enough time in the minor league forums

  17. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shane Wahl View Post
    Harrison certainly the capacity to develop into a pretty good OBP guy. Walker is lacking there, though the slugging makes up for a lot of that. I still don't really understand why the Twins didn't push Walker to get a month or so at Fort Myers, though. That might have given us a somewhat clearer picture.
    I agree with the thought that Walker should have been given the chance at Ft. Myer, but I also conclude that despite his low OBP - He was 2nd in the entire league in Runs scored. That just tells me that he is a special player. Most guys who lead the league in Runs scored have great a OBP. He has been one of his leagues best in each of his professional levels in Runs scored. That would mean that he scores more than others on his team (whom have a higher OBP) and he drives in more runs than others on his team (whom have a higher OBP). Which prospect would you want on your team?

  18. #98
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    1st HRs - LEAGUE LEADER
    1st RBIs - LEAGUE LEADER
    2nd Runs Scored - 2nd in LEAGUE
    10 for 10 in SB's - NOT CAUGHT as a PROFESSIONAL
    The above stats are what baseball is all about in my mind.
    Damn Sabermetrics - Who is getting it done!!
    Oh yeah - The Kernels had the best record in Minor League Baseball too.

  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oxtung View Post
    As good as Ibarra's 2013 season was, he has done little to distinguish himself the previous years. When you are 24 and starting the season at AA one season isn't enough to get you ranked.

    That said, I think we all hope that his 2013 season translates to the Twins in 2014, regardless of how he is viewed as a prospect!
    And he's walking half a batter per inning.

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    I agree with the thought that Walker should have been given the chance at Ft. Myer, but I also conclude that despite his low OBP - He was 2nd in the entire league in Runs scored. That just tells me that he is a special player. Most guys who lead the league in Runs scored have great a OBP. He has been one of his leagues best in each of his professional levels in Runs scored. That would mean that he scores more than others on his team (whom have a higher OBP) and he drives in more runs than others on his team (whom have a higher OBP). Which prospect would you want on your team?
    I want the one that projects better at the MLB level. Poor plate discipline has derailed too many prospects that had great MiLB stats.

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