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 Post subject: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:11 am 
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I used to do this when I had a blog and was more on top of it, but I decided to rank my top 10 Pirates prospects. Feel free to agree or disagree. (I have the age in {} and where I think they will start the season at the end.

1. Pedro Alvarez, 3B {22} - I know he hasn't played against pro competition yet, but his ceiling is very high. Let's face it. He better be that good. (West Virginia)

2. Andrew McCutcheon, OF {22} - The "P" word is still being thrown around a lot. He needs to put better numbers up in AAA this season and maybe find some power. Personally, I don't think you are going to see him this season until September. (Indy)

3. Jose Tabata, OF {20} - He is young which we can account for the immaturity, but the numbers speak for themselves. He could be better than McCutcheon sooner rather than later. (Altoona)

4. Neil Walker, 3B {23} - I know he hasn't really shown too much yet and his stock has actually dropped with many, but call it a gut feeling, but I think he is going to put it all together this year. He will get back the strike zone recognition and show some power. (Indy)

5. Bryan Morris, SP {22} - His velocity was up in Hickory even though his control was not. He has made a nice recovery from TJ surgery and could be a major factor in 2011. (Lynchburg)

6. Robbie Grossman, OF {19} - Another guy who really hasn't faced pro pitching (16 at-bats), but he has all the tools to be very good. This was one of those above-slot signings that the Pirates had never done before. He is very young , but the potential is there, plenty of it. (Bradenton/State College)

7. Brad Lincoln, SP {23} - Another pitcher recovering from TJ surgery, he is older than Morris, but his velocity was also there last season. He also had a very good WHIP. Nobody really complained when he go drafted, just when he got hurt. (Lynchburg)

8. Quenton Miler, SP {19} - Another above-slot signing who is out of high school. He is supposed to have a great slider. He also only throws in the low-90's so not one of NH's typical power arms. Might be a starter. Might be a reliever. Still too early to tell. (Bradenton/State College)

9. Daniel McCutcheon, RP {26} - The time is now for DM. He probably won't win a starting job out of spring training so he should be used in the bullpen as a set-up guy. I think he is better than most people do. His WHIP is outstanding. (Pittsburgh)

10. Jarek Cunningham, SS {19} - He had the best numbers of any player drafted last year (.385 OBP). He should be a SS although his range is still questionable because of a knee injury he suffered in high school. But his numbers at Bradenton are enough alone to put him on this list. (West Virginia)

HM
Jimmy Barthmaier, SP {25} (Indy)
Jordy Mercer, SS {22} (Lynchburg)
Jim Negrych, 2B {24} (Altoona)
Evan Meek, RP {25}(Indy)
Wes Freeman, OF {19} (Bradenton/State College)

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 2:21 am 
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No Shelby Ford anywhere near your rankings? I think that this will be a telling year for him. He should be in AAA, although he may start off the year in Altoona. I like his numbers overall. He gets on base at a decent clip (career .350 OBP in the minors so far), and he has decent (but developing) power for a middle infielder as evidenced by 103 XBH in 927 career at bats. Decent speed, too. I know nothing about his defense, though.

If Freddy Sanchez leaves in the year or two, he is the most likely internal candidate to replace him.

Final thing...he has a pretty cool name. Think his dad loves muscle cars?


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 2:25 am 
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I like Shelby Ford, but his OBP came down last year in Altoona and he is the kind of player who needs OBP because he won't ever hit for power (I think). I am just not as high on him as everyone else is.

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 2:54 am 
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I know that his numbers were down last year a bit, but he missed nearly 50 games with a hip flexor. As long as that was an aberration (the injury, that is), I think that he will see a bump in his production. I think that is also explains the drop in his numbers overall last year. The thing with this kid is, he is like 6'3". He isn't the typical stocky middle infielder and that is why I think that the power will develop. He has long arms that, as he grows (he just turned 24) so will his power. Granted he won't ever hit 40 HR's a year, but I think that he could develop into a 15-20 HR guy. Combine that with a .280 BA and a .350 OBP...hell, I'd take that.

One last dark horse that, deservedly, did NOT make your list, but could be an impact player still, IMO...Jamie Romak. He just turned 23, so he isn't "washed up" yet as a prospect. I was shocked that he wasn't picked up in the Rule 5 draft after the Bucs left him unprotected. He is a young, powerful, left handed hitter. He strikes out way too much, but seemed to cut back a bit on the K's when he got to Altoona. If he can progress a little more this year, he still has a chance to be in the mix. There is no doubt he has the power to succeed, but is he just a Brad Eldred/Graham Koonce or can he be a legit major leaguer? My hopes aren't too high...


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 4:02 am 
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bucco boy wrote:
1. Pedro Alvarez, 3B {22} - I know he hasn't played against pro competition yet, but his ceiling is very high. Let's face it. He better be that good. (West Virginia)



I will be very very very suprised if Alvarez doesn't start in Altoona. I can't see any way that they'd start him off in West Virginia.

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 10:08 am 
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Great list. I would add Jeff Sues but that's about it.


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 11:43 am 
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So what do the Bucs do with Neil Walker?

Does he stay at third and have Pedro move to first? Does Pedro stay at third and Walker moves to second?


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:16 pm 
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Jeremy wrote:
So what do the Bucs do with Neil Walker?

Trade him.

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:55 pm 
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omgardd wrote:
bucco boy wrote:
1. Pedro Alvarez, 3B {22} - I know he hasn't played against pro competition yet, but his ceiling is very high. Let's face it. He better be that good. (West Virginia)



I will be very very very suprised if Alvarez doesn't start in Altoona. I can't see any way that they'd start him off in West Virginia.


Alvarez will start at high A. Don't forget that Matt Weiters started at high A, and he played winter ball. Alvarez, if anything, is a tick behind that. No way does he go to Altoona. But he should be in Altoona by June.

As for the rest of your list, BB, I would add Romak and Hague to the honorable mention, and I guess Ford, but like you I am not as high on him. I would also drop Walker to near the bottom of the top 10, moving everyone up a spot, and maybe flip Grossman and Lincoln. But I have no major disagreements. Funny how many of our top prospects were brought in by Huntington in one year...


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 3:42 pm 
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I dont see a problem with Walker being 3...

I liked his power numbers (16 HR's, 7 3B's, 25 2B's, .414 slugging) considering the lack of average (.242) and walks (29 BB's, .280 OBP)...

He has been pretty good on most accounts of him handling 3rd base, he needs to get his average up and be more selective at the plate and cut the K's down...

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 3:51 pm 
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BBF: The only reasons I think Alvarez might start at West Virginia are because he didn't play any pro ball last year and I also think the Pirates would like him within driving distance for NH and his staff to observe him. But Lynchburg is possible too. I agree about Altoona.

And I thought the same thing about the last thing you mentioned after the fact. NH brought 7 of those guys in last season.

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:23 pm 
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Chris Anderson wrote:
I know that his numbers were down last year a bit, but he missed nearly 50 games with a hip flexor. As long as that was an aberration (the injury, that is), I think that he will see a bump in his production. I think that is also explains the drop in his numbers overall last year. The thing with this kid is, he is like 6'3". He isn't the typical stocky middle infielder and that is why I think that the power will develop. He has long arms that, as he grows (he just turned 24) so will his power. Granted he won't ever hit 40 HR's a year, but I think that he could develop into a 15-20 HR guy. Combine that with a .280 BA and a .350 OBP...hell, I'd take that.

One last dark horse that, deservedly, did NOT make your list, but could be an impact player still, IMO...Jamie Romak. He just turned 23, so he isn't "washed up" yet as a prospect. I was shocked that he wasn't picked up in the Rule 5 draft after the Bucs left him unprotected. He is a young, powerful, left handed hitter. He strikes out way too much, but seemed to cut back a bit on the K's when he got to Altoona. If he can progress a little more this year, he still has a chance to be in the mix. There is no doubt he has the power to succeed, but is he just a Brad Eldred/Graham Koonce or can he be a legit major leaguer? My hopes aren't too high...


I like Shelby, too. He had a great AFL season before shutting it down. If healthy, he's a legit prospect. Only one slight correction, Chris- Romak bats right handed.


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:32 pm 
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If Neil Walker is the Pirates #4 prospect we are in for many more losing seasons. I'd say he is just one of many draft blunders.

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:36 pm 
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I dug this thread up. Here is my revised list:

1. Pedro Alvarez
2. Jose Tabata
3. Brad Lincoln
4. Tim Alderson
5. Lastings Milledge
6. Gorkys Hernandez
7. Robbie Grossman
8. Rudy Owens
9. Bryan Morris
10. Jeff Clement

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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:45 pm 
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Crap...I listed Shelby Ford and Jaime Romak as my sleepers. Yikes! With talent evaluation like that I might be able to get a job with David Littlefield!!!


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:47 pm 
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bucco boy wrote:
I dug this thread up. Here is my revised list:

1. Pedro Alvarez
2. Jose Tabata
3. Brad Lincoln
4. Tim Alderson
5. Lastings Milledge
6. Gorkys Hernandez
7. Robbie Grossman
8. Rudy Owens
9. Bryan Morris
10. Jeff Clement


9 out of 10 are Opie's Boys.


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:48 pm 
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Chris Anderson wrote:
Crap...I listed Shelby Ford and Jaime Romak as my sleepers. Yikes! With talent evaluation like that I might be able to get a job with David Littlefield!!!


I'm just glad i missed this thread back in December or whenever it was because i probably would have made some stupid choices.


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 10:37 pm 
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bucco boy wrote:
I dug this thread up. Here is my revised list:

1. Pedro Alvarez
2. Jose Tabata
3. Brad Lincoln
4. Tim Alderson
5. Lastings Milledge
6. Gorkys Hernandez
7. Robbie Grossman
8. Rudy Owens
9. Bryan Morris
10. Jeff Clement


I will be curious to see where BA and Baseball Prospectus ranks our farm system going into next year. You didn't even add Tony Sanchez, Starling Marte, Quincy Lattimore, Calvin Anderson, Jeff Locke, Brian Friday, Jim Negrych, Argenis Diaz, or Daniel McCutchen. It's possible that we will have a Top 5 ranking for our minor league system next year. I still worry about middle infield though. If Grabow or Capps can be turned into Eric Young Jr...that would be the final move to make me happy.


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 Post subject: Re: My Top 10 Pirates Prospects
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 10:41 pm 
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bucco boy wrote:
I dug this thread up. Here is my revised list:

1. Pedro Alvarez
2. Jose Tabata
3. Brad Lincoln
4. Tim Alderson
5. Lastings Milledge
6. Gorkys Hernandez
7. Robbie Grossman
8. Rudy Owens
9. Bryan Morris
10. Jeff Clement


MY LIST
1. Pedro Alvarez
2. Jose Tabata
3. Brad Lincoln
4. Tim Alderson
5. Gorkys Hernandez
6. Neil Walker
7. Jeff Clement
8. Tony Sanchez
9. Bryan Morris
10. Just about anyone.
Look I do not like to call Lastings a prospect. He is a major league ready starter.
I didn't pick a single 10 spot.

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