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John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Talk shop about the various prospects and teams that make up the Cleveland Indians organization.

John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GeronimoSon » Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:19 pm

The Minor League Ball Website with John Sickels has narrowed down the 47 names he came up with for the Indians minor league and ROY eligible candidates for the following Evaluation:

Link: http://www.minorleagueball.com/2012/1/4 ... s-for-2012

Cleveland Indians Top 20 Prospects for 2012

All grades are EXTREMELY PRELIMINARY and subject to change. Grade C+/C guys are pretty interchangeable depending on what you want to emphasize.

The list and grades are a blending of present performance and long-term potential. Comments are welcome, but in the end all analysis and responsibility is mine of course. Full reports on all of players can be found in the 2012 Baseball Prospect Book. We are now taking pre-orders. Order early and order often!

QUICK PRIMER ON GRADE MEANINGS:

Grade A prospects are the elite. They have a good chance of becoming stars or superstars. Almost all Grade A prospects develop into major league regulars, if injuries or other problems don't intervene. Note that is a major "if" in some cases.

Grade B prospects have a good chance to enjoy successful careers. Some will develop into stars, some will not. Most end up spending several years in the majors, at the very least in a marginal role.

Grade C prospects are the most common type. These are guys who have something positive going for them, but who may have a question mark or three, or who are just too far away from the majors to get an accurate feel for. A few Grade C guys, especially at the lower levels, do develop into stars. Many end up as role players or bench guys. Some don't make it at all.

A major point to remember is that grades for pitchers do NOT correspond directly to grades for hitters. Many Grade A pitching prospects fail to develop, often due to injuries. Some Grade C pitching prospects turn out much better than expected.

Also note that there is diversity within each category. I'm a tough grader; Grade C+ is actually good praise coming from me, and some C+ prospects turn out very well indeed.

Finally, keep in mind that all grades are shorthand. You have to read the full comment in the book for my full opinion about a player, the letter grade only tells you so much. A Grade C prospect in rookie ball could end up being very impressive, while a Grade C prospect in Triple-A is likely just a future role player.

1) Francisco Lindor, SS, Grade B+: A strong defensive shortstop who can hit, at least for average. Not expected to have big power, but not punchless either. He should be a force at the top of the order while providing a slick glove, and probably won't need as much time in the minors as many high schoolers.

2) Dillon Howard, RHP, Grade B-: Borderline B. No pro innings yet, but has body and stuff of a number two starter. Grade is cautious given lack of pro data. Could be much higher next year.

3) Tony Wolters, SS, Grade B-: Borderline B. Solid contact hitter had fine summer in the New York-Penn League, controls zone well, gets on base, effective runner, Indians say he has a chance to stick at shortstop, although with Lindor around a switch to second is very likely. That would be a nice double play combo.

4) Jake Sisco, RHP, Grade C+: Junior college pitcher drafted in the third round last year, throws hard, projectable, flashes a complete arsenal but not consistent yet. High ceiling with a chance to be special.

5) Luigi Rodriguez, OF, Grade C+: Tool-laden outfielder with power/speed potential, played well in Arizona Rookie League. High-ceiling, grade could be much higher next year with another season under his belt.

5) Ronny Rodriguez, SS, Grade C+: Another tools guy, has plate discipline problems but hit 11 homers and stole 10 bases in the Midwest League in his pro debut, skipping short-season ball completely. 19 years old, from Dominican Republic, raw but has tools to stick at short. Another guy who could earn much higher grades as he develops.

6) Nick Hagadone, LHP, Grade C+: Power arm from left side has taken well to bullpen work, held lefties to .127 average in Triple-A. At worst a strong LOOGY, but could get beyond that. Should help in 2012.

7) Elvis Araujo, LHP, Grade C+: Big lefty is Tommy John survivor, looked very good in Arizona Rookie League, throws hard but secondary pitches and command need work. High ceiling.

8) Felix Sterling, RHP, Grade C+: Another raw-but-talented pitcher, throws hard, thick legs, durable build. Command needs work, like Araujo he could rank higher with a full season of additional development.

9) Scott Barnes, LHP, Grade C+: On verge of promotion to the majors when he hurt his knee in July. Decent stuff from the left side, deceptive, command is somewhat erratic but when it is working he looks like a solid number four starter. I have liked him since he was in college at St. John's.

10) Cord Phelps, 2B, Grade C+: Shoved aside by Jason Kipnis and didn't hit in major league trial, but deserves more chances. Fits "scrappy second baseman" stereotype but has more pop in his bat than most. Probably a utility player in Cleveland, or trade bait. Worse players have been regulars.

11) LeVon Washington, OF, Grade C+: Had a terrible year at Lake County, but gets a partial mulligan due to nagging injuries and trying to make adjustments in batting stance. Still young, draws some walks, still has the tools that made him an early pick in both '09 and '10 drafts.

12) Chen Lee, RHP, Grade C+: I like this guy and I don't know why he doesn't get more attention. His numbers are always strong, he throws reasonably hard, he's deceptive, he's got some control. Seems like he'll be a fine bullpen asset.

13) Chun Chen, C, Grade C+: Good throwing arm, has power, strike zone got away from him a bit in Double-A but still an intriguing property as a catcher with some sock in his bat.

14) Austin Adams, RHP, Grade C+: Live arm, decent year in Double-A but needs sharper control. Played shortstop in college and is athletic. Could be fourth starter or a solid reliever.

15) Jake Lowery, C, Grade C+: Excellent plate discipline with power potential, working on defense, probably won't hit for much of a batting average at higher levels but should be productive.

16) Matt Packer, LHP, Grade C+: Control artist gets plenty of grounders, posts strong K/BB ratios but hittable and needs a good defense behind him. Could be four/five starter with proper support.

17) Enosil Tejeda, RHP, Grade C+: Very good stuff, overpowering K/IP ratio in New York-Penn League, could move through system rapidly as relief option.

18) Jorge Martinez, SS, Grade C+: 18-year-old switch-hitter impressed scouts with tools in rookie ball, but quite raw on defense and faces positional switch. Just scratching the surface of his power potential. High-risk/high-reward type.

19) Robel Garcia, 3B; Grade C+: Another intriguing bat from Cleveland's collection of Latin American players in the Arizona Rookie League. Switch-hitter with power and contact issues.

20) Giovanni Soto, LHP, Grade C+: Not overpowering with the velocity but still gets his strikeouts, performed well in Carolina League at age 20, strong component ratios. Plausable he could develop into a mid-rotation starter.

21) Jesus Aguilar, 1B, Grade C+: Borderline C. He can mash the ball, plate discipline and defense are big questions.

OTHERS: Cody Allen, RHP; Cody Anderson, RHP; Rob Bryson, RHP; Kelvin De La Cruz, LHP; Juan Diaz, SS; Paulo Espino, RHP (a sleeper); Eric Haase, C; T.J. House, LHP; Corey Kluber, RHP; Jason Knapp, RHP; Alex Lavisky, C: Zach McAllister, RHP; Shawn Morimando, LHP; Bryson Myles, OF; Thomas Neal, OF; Dorssys Paulino, SS (latest Latin American bonus baby, high-ceiling player but hasn't even played in DSL yet); Zach Putnam, RHP; Danny Salazar, RHP; Bryce Stowell, RHP; Tyler Sturdevant, RHP.

This is a very difficult system to analyze.

The top of the organization was lopped off by trades and major league graduations, and the next wave is primarily at the lower levels. Quite honestly, spots 5 through 21 could be listed in almost any order, depending on how you value pure upside, risk, and closeness to the majors. I tried to find a balance with the list, but every analyst and writer is going to have a different take on this system once you get past the first four or five slots.

A list based purely on scouting and upside potential is going to look very different than a purely sabermetric list. Since I combine the two approaches, the uncertainty factor is quite high right now.

Indians fans may be discouraged by the large number of C+ grades, but they shouldn't be. While some of those C+s are future role players or relievers, the younger members of the group are high-ceiling guys who are just too raw or far away to get a higher grade just yet, but who could blossom within the next year or two. I'm thinking particularly of Araujo, Sterling, and the group of hitters who were backing them up in the Arizona Rookie League. The 2013 and 2014 lists could see a lot of those guys bumped up into the B-range (or maybe even higher) if they develop properly.

The "others" group has some very interesting names as well, beginning with Dorssys Paulino who could turn into a star, or nothing, or anything in between. McAllister, Neal, Espino, Putnam, Stovall, and Sturdevant could all contribute in the majors in 2012. Bryson Myles was an on-base machine with speed in college and the New York-Penn League.
In short, I like this farm system. It is going to be a lot of fun to see what happens in 2012, especially at Lake County and Mahoning Valley.
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Sickels Indians Prospects Top 20

Postby toledobuck » Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:20 pm

Saw that John Sickels came out with his Indians top 20 prospect ranking for 2012 today.

http://www.minorleagueball.com/2012/1/4 ... s-for-2012
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby criznit2009 » Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:35 pm

Pretty good list of names, but as he made clear the order is pretty interchangeable. A couple of things really stick out. Sisco - I like the kid but have a hard time seeing him sniffing my top 10. Aguilar - is a top 15 (prolly top 10 IMO) prospect right now.
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Re: Sickels Indians Prospects Top 20

Postby Rocky55 » Wed Jan 04, 2012 9:50 pm

Sickles looks like he might be getting over his Tribe hate, which was based on the ass beatings the 90's gang gave his beloved Twinkies. You'll notice that we're still nearly the last org that he features. Stupid attitude for someone trying to sell books.

His rankings are lazy & unimaginative, to say the least. Why didn't he just give the whole system a C+ & not waste our time?

The funniest part was in the comments section when a 12 yr old C.S. Lewis fan touted Hagadone as the #1 prospect. Pure genius.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:52 pm

What's wrong with what Sickels said? I think this is a very good list. I think C.C. Lee is a bit low and Chun Chen a bit high, and Aguilar a little lower than he should be.....and the absence of McAllister, Neal and Myles is puzzling...but those are just all the differences of opinion I guess.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:38 pm

TonyIPI wrote:What's wrong with what Sickels said? I think this is a very good list. I think C.C. Lee is a bit low and Chun Chen a bit high, and Aguilar a little lower than he should be.....and the absence of McAllister, Neal and Myles is puzzling...but those are just all the differences of opinion I guess.

I was wondering what was wrong myself. I thought this was the best, most thorough writeup of the Indian prospects Sickels has made since 2008. I think he is right about the organization. It is a bunch of C+ prospects. I only had two of Sickels' C+ prospects at B-, Aguilar and Barnes. Just a bit higher ceiling IMO but not a ringing endorsement. Interestingly enough, of the three you mentioned I only have McAllister in the top 20 but neal is close and all three are C+ to me. Still not sure of the benefits of a great imagination is to evaluating baseball talent but Rocky must have something specific in mind that I am not seeing. I know if I want great imagination in the evaluations of baseball players, all I have to do is read some of the site posters in this blog that I ignore otherwise. :pleasantry:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby A.Zajac » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:00 pm

indianinkslinger wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:What's wrong with what Sickels said? I think this is a very good list. I think C.C. Lee is a bit low and Chun Chen a bit high, and Aguilar a little lower than he should be.....and the absence of McAllister, Neal and Myles is puzzling...but those are just all the differences of opinion I guess.

I was wondering what was wrong myself. I thought this was the best, most thorough writeup of the Indian prospects Sickels has made since 2008. I think he is right about the organization. It is a bunch of C+ prospects. I only had two of Sickels' C+ prospects at B-, Aguilar and Barnes. Just a bit higher ceiling IMO but not a ringing endorsement. Interestingly enough, of the three you mentioned I only have McAllister in the top 20 but neal is close and all three are C+ to me. Still not sure of the benefits of a great imagination is to evaluating baseball talent but Rocky must have something specific in mind that I am not seeing. I know if I want great imagination in the evaluations of baseball players, all I have to do is read some of the site posters in this blog that I ignore otherwise. :pleasantry:


I echo the same opinion. Think this is one of Sickels' better write ups for the Tribe. I would have Barnes and Aguilar a little higher, but again, that's a matter of opinion. Lindor is a solid B+ until he plays more, Howard and Wolters are solid B to B-, Barnes and Aguilar are solid B- to strong C+ players .. aside from that, we do have a bunch of C prospects. I think he's a tiny too high on Sisco.. as Tony mentioned, no mention of Myles is a little puzzling.. but other than that, hard to argue.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GhostofTedCox » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:14 pm

I really don't understand why anyone would not have Jesus Aguilar in the Indians top 10 prospects. I admit he is not a finished product. But you have to like where he is right now.
He may be the best power hitter the Indians have developed since Belle, Ramirez, & Thome.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Rocky55 » Fri Jan 06, 2012 2:26 am

Sickles din't really rank anyone. He says rankings between 5 & 21 are interchangeable. To me, tha's chicken crap. Sickles is not some message board goofball like me, he's a supposed expert trying to sell his opinions. I know he goes more in depth in the book but on the discussion thread he called the sytem thin & then "changed his mind". With his book soon to go to print? Doesn't seem like much in depth knowlege to me.

Thing that bugged me immediately:

No Jordan Smith mention? Guy has a near .800 OPS, more BB's than K's leads the team in RBI, is actually young for a college draftee. No HR's you say? How about 20 2B's in 250 AB. If those kind of stats follow him to the Major Leagues, I'd be happy. Give me a guy who gets a lot of hits, 50 doubles in a full season of AB's, walks more than he K's, and I don't need him to hit HR's. Smith's not even in the team picture?

To clarify, I'm not griping about the rankings, just the ratings; everyone in the top 20, after the top three, can't possibly be equal. Either his grading scale needs revision or he needs to put more work into the evals.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby ClevelandBlues » Fri Jan 06, 2012 6:22 am

I agree that it is not as bad as years past. I don't agree with Aguilar being ranked so low, and I think Sisco and Luigi Rodriguez as top five players is a bit of a stretch. There are about a half dozen relievers I would rank ahead of Tejada. I am a little suprised that Knapp has fallen so much. I know he has been dealing with injuries the last few years, but when healthy he has much better stuff than many ranked ahead of him. Other than that, not too bad of a list.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GeronimoSon » Fri Jan 06, 2012 11:12 am

Re: Rocky55: ... his grading scale needs revision...


His ranking system is easily understood by the casual baseball fan as they can relate the A's and B's and C's to an elementary grading card.. The more astute or involved fan shrugs at that kind of rating system. The 20-80 system is a MUCH better evaluation of a prospect as the numerical values give clear indication of present ability and future projection across several areas of baseball activities.

For example: Francisco Lindor was rated at an overall grade of 59 with only a handful of players ranked ahead of him (Bubba Starling, 64, was the highest, followed by AJ Cole at 63 as examples) The rating of players, both pitches and position players is pretty good: Bat Speed/FB Speed, Power/ Control, Speed/Walks, Fielding/Control, and Arm Strength/Command. Further definition of the criteria is somewhat ambiguous, but you can certainly see with the break down of Francisco Lindor that his only area of weakness is his projected power (50). In the four other areas he is rated at 60 or above with 50-55 being considered an every day MLB player..

BTW...Sickels posting is okay. His book isn't really much better..
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:13 pm

GhostofTedCox wrote:I really don't understand why anyone would not have Jesus Aguilar in the Indians top 10 prospects. I admit he is not a finished product. But you have to like where he is right now.
He may be the best power hitter the Indians have developed since Belle, Ramirez, & Thome.


Lots of issues handling outer half of the plate, gets eaten up out there and with breaking balls away. He also can get tied up on inside fastballs. He is definitely an interesting power prospect and had a great 2011 campaign at Lake County....and has had a nice offseason....but there are huge question marks about his bat going forward and his defense. The scouts for other teams say he is a below average defender....Indians say he has potential to be at least average or better....I myself am not sure. I have never been impressed with his defense and his work around the bag.

This is a year where with so many options for the Top 20 and very few clear top prospects that Aguilar could rank as high as 5-7 in some lists and be in the 18-20 range on others. He's borderline Top 10 to me....though I have still not made a decision on it.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby JP_Frost » Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:21 pm

I agree with you Tony on Aguilar. He's a borderline top 10 prospect for me as well. That says more about our system than it does about Aguilar as a prospect. If you solely look at his skillset, he's probably top 15-20, but because we lack power hitting prospects and he basically has a clear path to the majors if he performs, he ranks higher. To me he's something of a all or nothing type of player. He could get everything to click and become a .260-.270, 25-30HR hitter, or he could fizzle out at AA.

It's an important year for a lot of our prospects.

Btw, where does Lindor start the season? Lake County?
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:23 pm

JP_Frost wrote:Btw, where does Lindor start the season? Lake County?


Barring injury, yes, that's the plan.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GeronimoSon » Sat Jan 07, 2012 11:08 am

A different format for an Indians Prospect list has been posted by Let's Go Tribe..

Here's the link: http://www.letsgotribe.com/2012/1/4/267 ... spect-list

Earlier this off-season I previewed the series of annual prospect overviews by pointing out that the Indians lists were likely to look quite bad:

I expect no one not drafted this season by the Indians to appear in prospect Top 100 lists. The past two years, of course, the Indians have graded out fairly well in the prospect world. Three factors contribute to the plummet you are likely to observe in the Indians standing.

1. Graduating top prospects to the majors

2. Trading top prospects

3. An underperforming crop of 2010 draftees

The Indians strengths lie in young talent at the major league level (i.e. Santana, Kipnis, Chisenhall), a reasonably well thought of 2011 draft class (particularly Francisco Lindor and Dillon Howard), the nascent potential of the under-performing, but also well though of, 2010 draft class (LeVon Washington, Tony Wolters...), and a wave of young talent just entering the system from Latin America (Elvis Araujo, Ronny Rodriguez...). Lesser acknowledged, but the Indians do have a rather large collection of potential major league worthy pitching arms (albeit not stars) in the upper minors. It is certainly possible these groups churn out an above-average number of major league players, some of them star-worthy. But we have very little in the way of actual performance at a professional level to evaluate most of them. Since I'm not a scout, and our prospect lists here have tended to be built out of performance, this poses a challenge. I would actually make an even stronger statement, and say that for most of the young guys in the system it would be nearly impossible to produce a reasonable projection for them outside of professionally scouting them yourself, something few outside the organization have probably done. So what follows is more of a 2012 viewers' guide to the system rather than a prospect rankings. I have evaluated players across the upper (AA-AA), lower (A-A+) and early (Rookie and below) levels of the system and put them into what I think are reasonable categorical tiers based on what we have to go on. The post that follows is long, but hopefully it will give you a little mid-winter warmth for your Indians fandom.



UPPER MINORS (AA - AAA)

Potential Stars

None. We might produce some excellent relief pitchers out of this group, but I have a hard time identifying such players as "stars." The positional players are a wasteland of poor draft picks and slumped prospects.

Potential major league contributors

Scott Barnes - I think Barnes is the best of the bunch in the upper minors, despite a season ending knee injury in the second half of last season. Barnes is a lefty with occasional control problems, but who showed the upside last season of a mid-rotation starter.

Chen Lee - Lee is the most impressive of the Indians minor league relievers to have not yet debuted in Cleveland. Small-framed and possessing a deceptive delivery, Lee made big improvements to his strikeout rate a year ago while facing better competition. What I find interesting is that the Indians have habitually used Lee in multiple inning stretches, averaging seven batters faced per appearance, adding to his potential value as a relief pitcher.

Austin Adams - Adams is the wildcard of this group and arguably my most aggressive placement. Adams is a converted pitcher and only completed his second season as a starter in 2011. He pitched well, however, and throws as hard as anyone in the upper system. A more likely scenario is an eventual bullpen conversion, but the high-end scenario is still a mid-rotation pitcher with high K/high BB totals.

Matt Packer - Packer is sort of the opposite kind of prospect as Adams, precision and control rather than power. Packer had a stellar 2010 to get onto the prospect map, then struggled in the first half of 2011 for Akron. He turned it around in the second half, though, dominating in his final 13 starts of the season.

Bryce Stowell - Stowell might not deserve this spot, as he only pitched 38 innings last season and for some reason managed to not earn himself a late promotion to Columbus for the playoffs. But he throws extremely hard, triple-digit hard, and gets tons of Ks (he has K'ed 1/3 of the batters he has faced at AA and above). He also allows a lot of walks, has mechanical and health issues, and for some reason seems to occupy the organizational doghouse.

Fringe guys

Nick Weglarz - Plate appearances from 2007-2011: 540, 454, 427, 372, 172

TJ McFarland - He's young, but he needs to show some peripherals at some point

Chun-Hsiu Chen - If he can't catch, he is just a below average bat for his position with declining plate skills in 2011

Rob Bryson - Needs to stay healthy long enough to move up the ladder. Stuff and results seem to be there.

Juan Diaz - Being on the roster at the age of 22 at a skill position almost by definition makes you worthy of fringe consideration. Needs to do something on the field to show why, though.

Kelvin De La Cruz - He is still a 6'5" lefty with intriguing stuff

Paolo Espino - Even Antonetti made the comparison of him and Tomlin this year...small frame guy with sneaky good numbers.

Tyler Sturdevant - 11 K/9 in his minor league career, and now at Columbus

Thomas Neal - Seems as reasonable a candidate as any to fill the Trevor Crowe-role on the roster

LOW MINORS (A - A+)

Potential Stars

None. Yet. This could look very different a year from now, but at the moment, no one has put the tools together into enough of a performance to say this guy looks like a potential star.

Potential major league contributors

Jesus Aguilar - Has undeniably gotten better as the year progressed, up through and including impressive performances in AFL and winter leagues. He's huge, though, and obviously limited to first base at best. Needs to show he can command the plate better and carry his power into 2012. Have to feel good about 2011, but I think the odds are still stacked heavily against him.

Giovanni Soto - Began 2011 in fine form before falling prey to injury mid-season. A healthy return would still give him major league rotation potential.

Cody Allen - The Indians drafted, and failed to sign Allen in 2010. So they drafted him again in 2011. Not young, but he did pitch across four levels in short time last year, making it all the way to Akron for one appearance. Of the 66 batters he faced in Lake County, he struck out 28 of them (42%).

LeVon Washington - This one is on pedigree and draft position alone, as Washington had a dreadful 2011 at the plate.

Fringe guys

Carlos Moncrief - Consider this my guilty pleasure, or sleeper, pick (I almost bumped him to the list above). Moncrief is a converted pitcher who flashed speed (20 SB, 7 3B) and power (16 HR, 49 XBH) while playing RF and CF in just his second year as a position player. But his 158 Ks suggest he has a long way to go for his tools, which might be as good as anyone in the low minors of the system, to translate into progress and performance.

Ronny Rodriguez - 19-year old from the Dominican held his own in 2011 and could be a big riser in 2012.

Preston Guilmet - I would have put him in the above list if his strikeout rate, still good, hadn't dropped significantly from 2010>2011.

Alex Monsalve - Just 19, Monsalve showed flashes of hitting ability while seeing 72 games at catcher for the Captains in 2011.

Giovanny Urshela - Another teenager, Urshela is a gifted defensive 3B who faded offensively as the season went on.

Tyler Cannon - Has already seen time at six defensive positions, occasionally having success with his bat. Possible future utility guy.

Roberto Perez - He is a catcher rated very highly defensively and with pretty decent secondary skills. Always confused why he doesn't get more discussion and playing time.

Michael Goodnight - Big righty well thought of by many scouts. Needs to get better results.

Clayton Cook - I am not high on Cook, as his numbers have slowly gone down each year. But he has stayed healthy and advanced each year and is young enough to still to make a leap forward.

TJ House - Dreadful in 2011, needs a significant rebound in 2012

Kyle Blair - Something of a 2010 draft-bonus baby, Blair underwhelmed significantly in 2011. Good bounce-back candidate for 2012.

Mike Rayl - Kind of the low-minors version of Tomlin/Espino

Danny Salazar - see Juan Diaz, above

Alex Lavisky - Alex has legitimate catching skills and power potential, skills worthy of moving him much further up this list. But before that can happen, he needs to show even a semblance of control over the strike zone.

EARLY MINORS (Rookie Leagues, DSL)

This is kind of the primordial soup terrain of the system. I think it is kind of silly to make much of a projection at all for these guys, given the distance between where they currently are and the majors. Nevertheless, here are the guys to keep an eye out for in 2012 on the basis of their draft status, scouts view, or limited performance to date.

The soup

Francisco Lindor, Dillon Howard, Jake Sisco, Jake Lowery, Bryson Myles, Eric Haase, Tony Wolters, Elvis Araujo, Enosil Tejada, Will Roberts, Luigi Rodriguez, Robel Garcia, Jose Ramirez, Robert Aviles, Manuel Carmona, Luis DeJesus, Felix Sterling, Luis Lugo, and on and on.

By my count I have 50 guys on this list, and I could probably easily add another ten. The biggest bulk of talent is certainly sitting at the bottom of the system, meaning Lake County and Kinston, but perhaps even more the short-season leagues starting at the end of June, will be where the most exciting prospect action takes place in 2012. In the upper minors, it will be more a matter of jockeying for position for call-ups to fill in the last spot on the bench and the last spot on the bullpen when those spots open up. A year, or even two years from now, we should have a lot clearer sense who on this list has potential greatness in their future, and who is on their way out of baseball altogether.

My biggest suggestion is to not let the offseason prospect lists get you down. The Indians system produced major league debuts in 2011 from Jason Kipnis, Lonnie Chisenhall, Alex White, Drew Pomeranz, Cord Phelps and quite a few interesting relief pitchers. Those are not the products of a weak system. Now it is time to sit back, wait, watch and enjoy.


Kind of a "glass half empty" appraisal, but, with merit. The inclusion of Nick Weglarz as a Finge ML contributor seems to be somewhat optimistic.. comments..
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby jellis » Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:08 pm

there has never been a prospect I have seen more over hyped than aguilar, lets see him do it at an advanced level. He has no eye for the strike zone, no position, all he has is power. We have seen this before, maybe he develops, maybe hes another scott morgan or danny peoples, people really need to just enjoy him and realize even in a weak system he is a borderline top ten and far from a great spec
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Tue Jan 10, 2012 8:01 am

jellis wrote:there has never been a prospect I have seen more over hyped than aguilar, lets see him do it at an advanced level. He has no eye for the strike zone, no position, all he has is power. We have seen this before, maybe he develops, maybe hes another scott morgan or danny peoples, people really need to just enjoy him and realize even in a weak system he is a borderline top ten and far from a great spec

I hope the comment about Aguilar being the most overhyped prospect ever was "tongue in cheek" jellis. And I agree with your conclusion. However, I have had the opportunity to watch him in ST and the AFL last year. I saw progress in pitch recognition and defensive footwork. He doesn't hit some pitches well but he recognizes them better so there is hope. He is no twinkletoes even now but he moves well enough so that his biggest weakness at 1B defensively, IMO, is ground balls to his right. He is a 1B who may belie the old adage "if you can't succeed at 1B, try the OF". :pleasantry:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Lloyd Christmas » Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:43 am

jimcallisBA Jim Callis
Yes, they do. #Marlins, #Indians just barely better than them. @jonf1220: #WhiteSox have to have the worst farm system right?
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Wed Jan 11, 2012 7:51 pm

Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby A.Zajac » Wed Jan 11, 2012 7:57 pm

Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


WOW. Gotta say, I'm hating Baseball America more and more for this very reason. The first two I'm fine with. Everything after that almost leaves me scratching my head. Hagadone THIRD? Wolters SEVENTH? Barnes NINTH? And even McAllister SIXTH? What a jooookee.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:05 pm

A.Zajac wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


WOW. Gotta say, I'm hating Baseball America more and more for this very reason. The first two I'm fine with. Everything after that almost leaves me scratching my head. Hagadone THIRD? Wolters SEVENTH? Barnes NINTH? And even McAllister SIXTH? What a jooookee.


Other than the relievers (who BA always overrates IMO), I think this is pretty solid actually. Don't really have a problem with Hags and Lee top 10 with the state of the system either.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby JP_Frost » Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:19 pm

It's a strange list for BA, since they are usually really high on upside and toolsy players, which we have in the lower minors, but they've decided to go with mostly AA/AAA guys in this top 10 with very limited ceilings.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby criznit2009 » Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:19 pm

Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


Well - one things for sure, as the various prospect rankings continue to come in, we are going to see a lot more names than normal in tops tens and I cant think of a more muddled group of prospects since I have started following the tribes minor league system. Not that I have been doing it very long but this year is definitely different. For 2012 I don't see how anyones, posters or pros, prospect list doesn't start 1. Lindor 2. Howard.
3. ? (Wolters prolly by skills/default). 4. Yeah. Any way to B.A's list.

Like the love for CC - maybe a lil' high but maybe not. McAllister at 6th, Wolters at 7th? Reverse that one at the very least. Hagadone too is high, but he could very easily end up having a successful "rookie" season this year. Adams and Barnes are somewhere in there but Putnam at 10 really (Phelps/LWashington?)- IMO thats high. Unless they really don't like (I hope they don't know) Araujo, Sterling, Ronny Rod, Sisco, Aguilar possibly.With little experience to distinguish a lot of the young guys so far it makes it difficult to differentiate guys anywhere for 5-25 honestly. I think one could say our farm system is weak and make a case for that, but for me, so many guys who could be serious "real" prospect next year have so little experience/stats/etc that its impossible to tell.We have a few guys with big question marks to go along with big time potential and if a few break out in 2012 that wouldn't surprise me at all. Tough year to separate and rank. 1. Lindor 2. Howard. 3. Next!
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:22 pm

A.Zajac wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


WOW. Gotta say, I'm hating Baseball America more and more for this very reason. The first two I'm fine with. Everything after that almost leaves me scratching my head. Hagadone THIRD? Wolters SEVENTH? Barnes NINTH? And even McAllister SIXTH? What a jooookee.


Then you are gonna not like my list either. :angel:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:27 pm

Upon further review of Sickels' list I noticed Tejeda in there at #17. I'm sorry, but that's WAY off. Looks to me like he simply is just basing it on stats and having not scouted him at all. Guy tops out at 90 MPH and took advantage of hitters in NYPL with his good CB. Kind of old for the league too. He's an interesting prospect, but not anywhere close to Top 20....or 50 in my eyes.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Thu Jan 12, 2012 12:32 am

TonyIPI wrote:Upon further review of Sickels' list I noticed Tejeda in there at #17. I'm sorry, but that's WAY off. Looks to me like he simply is just basing it on stats and having not scouted him at all. Guy tops out at 90 MPH and took advantage of hitters in NYPL with his good CB. Kind of old for the league too. He's an interesting prospect, but not anywhere close to Top 20....or 50 in my eyes.

I pretty much agree with you on Tejeda. But we both felt that way about Burns and we might have been wrong. I like Sickels ratings better than BA but it is hard to rate so many slightly above average prospects and not have placement disagreements. I do have Aguilar in my top 10, Barnes higher than 9th and Adams outside because of age and command issues. I waffle on McAllister but he does not fit in my top 6 even when I try to convince myself he is top 10 material. You clearly would have rated Judy higher than Tejeda as would I but not as much as you, I guess. Not sure how BA overlooks so many position prospects from short season ball but there is not much to go on in some cases. :pleasantry:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby jellis » Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:01 am

TonyIPI wrote:
A.Zajac wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


WOW. Gotta say, I'm hating Baseball America more and more for this very reason. The first two I'm fine with. Everything after that almost leaves me scratching my head. Hagadone THIRD? Wolters SEVENTH? Barnes NINTH? And even McAllister SIXTH? What a jooookee.


Then you are gonna not like my list either. :angel:


only part that bothers me is putnam, I like him but not 10th in front of arujo and sterling. I think I had 8 of those players in my top ten.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Rocky55 » Thu Jan 12, 2012 3:40 pm

A.Zajac wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


WOW. Gotta say, I'm hating Baseball America more and more for this very reason. The first two I'm fine with. Everything after that almost leaves me scratching my head. Hagadone THIRD? Wolters SEVENTH? Barnes NINTH? And even McAllister SIXTH? What a jooookee.

Know what, I think I'd go with Wolters & Aguilar at 1 & 2. Maybe then Lindor & Howard. Wolters really impressed me with his season at MV, 19 yrs old & competing against mostly college guys. Aguilar's got a clear path unless we sign someone or draft Joey Gallo. I'm assuming Gallo ends up at 1B. Although he's talented, I think Hagadone gets more cred as a former Red Sux spec. You could also argue that Araujo might be ranked higher than Howard.

Not going to be easy ranking the system this year.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby OhioBaseball » Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:54 pm

Hermie13 wrote:Baseball America's Top 10 Indians list leaked:

1. Lindor
2. Howard
3. Hagadone
4. CC Lee
5. L. Rodriguez
6. McAllister
7. Wolters
8. A. Adams
9. Barnes
10. Putnam


To me, the clear omission is Elvis Araujo. If you strip away Howard's signing bonus, the Scott Boras stuff, the relative draft hype and actually comp Howard to Araujo -- there isn't much difference.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby MadThinker88 » Thu Jan 19, 2012 1:36 pm

For those interested: the baseball prospectus listing (11+ 9 more) was posted today.
Lindor is listed as a 5 star prospect, no one else was given more than 3 stars.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Thu Jan 19, 2012 1:37 pm

Baseball Prospectus has their Tribe top 11 (actually top 20) up now as well:

Five-Star Prospects
1. Francisco Lindor, SS
Three-Star Prospects
2. Dillon Howard, RHP
3. Ronny Rodriguez, SS
4. Austin Adams, RHP
5. Tony Wolters, SS
6. Nick Hagadone, LHP
7. Dorssys Paulino, SS
8. Luigi Rodriguez, OF
Two-Star Prospects
9. Scott Barnes, LHP
10. Robel Garcia, INF
11. Elvis Araujo, LHP

Nine More
12. Jake Cisco, RHP: This 2011 third-round pick has size and stuff, but he’s raw.
13. Zach McAllister, RHP: He has command and fastball movement, but little else. His ceiling is a fifth starter.
14. Felix Sterling, RHP: This young righty has a power arm and big potential, but he needs refinement.
15. Jorge Martinez, SS: He’s yet another teenage Dominican with loud tools. He profiles as a third baseman with power.
16. Chen Lee, RHP: This undersized righty has an electric fastball. He should pitch in big leagues this year, and has a seventh- or eighth-inning ceiling.
17. Levon Washington, OF: He’s still a great athlete, but his swing fell apart in 2011.
18. Jesus Aguilar, 1B: This massive first baseman is a bat-only prospect, but there are questions about what he can do other than hit for power.
19. Chun-Hsui Chen, C: He has impressive offensive skills, but he’s well below average behind the plate.
20. Zack Putnam, RHP: Like Lee, Putnam should reach the big leagues this year, but he profiles as a solid reliever, not an impact one.


I think Goldstein sums up the system well with his "System in 20 Words or Less": This is the youngest, riskiest, most volatile Top 11 I've ever done.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:09 pm

BP also listed the Top 10 Talents 25 and Under.....some big surprises IMO:

1. Jason Kipnis -2B
2. Carlos Santana - C
3. Francisco Lindor - SS
4. Lonnie Chisenhall - 3B
5. Michael Brantley -OF
6. Dillon Howard - RHP
7. Ronny Rodriguez - SS
8. Lou Marson - C
9. Jeanmar Gomez - RHP
10. Austin Adams -RHP

I knew Goldstein and BP loved Kipnis.....but over Santana?!?! Wow...
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:10 pm

No surprise on the B-Pro list. Only surprise to me was seeing that Goldstein did not start researching the listing or thinking about until 3 days before he posted it.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby criznit2009 » Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:51 pm

Hermie13 wrote:BP also listed the Top 10 Talents 25 and Under.....some big surprises IMO:

1. Jason Kipnis -2B
2. Carlos Santana - C
3. Francisco Lindor - SS
4. Lonnie Chisenhall - 3B
5. Michael Brantley -OF
6. Dillon Howard - RHP
7. Ronny Rodriguez - SS
8. Lou Marson - C
9. Jeanmar Gomez - RHP
10. Austin Adams -RHP

I knew Goldstein and BP loved Kipnis.....but over Santana?!?! Wow...


One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:10 pm

criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Fri Jan 20, 2012 1:39 am

TonyIPI wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.


If this is true (and not saying it's not), strongly think the Tribe should consider moving him. Kid just doesn't look like he'll ever walk enough or hit enough to be a top of the lineup guy, and doesn't have the power to be in LF if he can't. Not sure the Tribe is sold on him either....or else why make such a huge offer to Beltran after signing Grady? :dunno:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GeronimoSon » Fri Jan 20, 2012 9:34 am

Hermie13 wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.


If this is true (and not saying it's not), strongly think the Tribe should consider moving him. Kid just doesn't look like he'll ever walk enough or hit enough to be a top of the lineup guy, and doesn't have the power to be in LF if he can't. Not sure the Tribe is sold on him either....or else why make such a huge offer to Beltran after signing Grady? :dunno:

The Beltran offer (and acceptance) would have given the Indians a power hitting, middle of the order SWH OF capable of playing CF/RF. Both Grady and Brantley have shown ineptitude against left handers, especially over the past two seasons (nearly identical splits in 2011). With the possible addition of Aaron Cunningham along with Beltran, the Indians would have an outfield that should have been vastly superior to the sub .600 OPS's Brantley and Sizemore have been able to achieve versus LHP's.

Additionally,Grady Sizemore will need time off to rest his surgically repaired knees from time to time, so it was an excellent fit, all around. Brantley should not be the leadoff hitter against lefties, period. btw..

Without Beltran (it would have been nice), the best leadoff hitter the Indians have versus lefties and, at the very worst, adequate CF'er on the squad.. is probably Jason Donald...
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Fri Jan 20, 2012 1:28 pm

GeronimoSon wrote:The Beltran offer (and acceptance) would have given the Indians a power hitting, middle of the order SWH OF capable of playing CF/RF. Both Grady and Brantley have shown ineptitude against left handers, especially over the past two seasons (nearly identical splits in 2011). With the possible addition of Aaron Cunningham along with Beltran, the Indians would have an outfield that should have been vastly superior to the sub .600 OPS's Brantley and Sizemore have been able to achieve versus LHP's.

Additionally,Grady Sizemore will need time off to rest his surgically repaired knees from time to time, so it was an excellent fit, all around. Brantley should not be the leadoff hitter against lefties, period. btw..

Without Beltran (it would have been nice), the best leadoff hitter the Indians have versus lefties and, at the very worst, adequate CF'er on the squad.. is probably Jason Donald...


The benefits of Beltran were obvious....I just didn't see Brantley even being on the ML roster if Beltran was around. To me it'd be a waste as he'd be on the bench more often than not unless Grady was on the DL. Beltran in LF, Grady in CF, and Choo in RF would be your everyday starting OF....unless you wanted Brantley at 1B everyday, he'd be the 4th outfielder. While I'm not as big a fan of Brantley as most, I think he's too valuable to waste on the bench. Needs to play close to everyday be it in Cleveland or CBus. Moot point right now obviously with Beltran in St. Louis, but I still found interesting that the Tribe seemed so eager get a guy that would take many at-bats away from Brantley.

I agree that Brantley shouldn't hit leadoff against lefties...IMO he shouldn't hit leadoff period. Grady has a better track record and should hit leadoff IMO. Brantley has just never shown the ability to get on base enough to warrant hitting at the top. Plus, Grady's big issue is strikeouts.....if you're going to strikeout, do it with the bases empty. Brantley also hit pretty well with runners in scoring position last year. Hit him 7th (or around there). Let him try and drive in runners. His K-rate is less, so odds are better he'll put the ball in play with runners on.

As far as Donald....not a bad idea really. Agree that it seems he is the best CF option on the club vs lefties. Going to be interesting to see who is in CF if both Donald and Brantley are in the OF together....to have better value, Brantley needs to be able to take over CF AND hit at the top of the lineup all the time. In reality, he regress in 2011 some (other than power). Some people were all excited about his second half in 2010. He did hit well posting a .284/.335/.371/.706 line. OBP wasn't great but solid for a kid still breaking into the bigs. However, in 2011 he slumped down to a .266/.318/.384/.702 line. Really could care less about the bump in power, Brantley's game needs to be get on base. I'm hoping a lot of it had to do with the wrist injury....but I have my doubts. Absolutely hope I'm wrong though. He is still young, so I do have some hope he can bounce back :drinks:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby TonyIBI » Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:34 am

Hermie13 wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.


If this is true (and not saying it's not), strongly think the Tribe should consider moving him. Kid just doesn't look like he'll ever walk enough or hit enough to be a top of the lineup guy, and doesn't have the power to be in LF if he can't. Not sure the Tribe is sold on him either....or else why make such a huge offer to Beltran after signing Grady? :dunno:


Doubt they move him.....Indians are very high on him. Had they signed Beltran, then Brantley this season would have still played almost every day in all 3 outfield spots and some 1B.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:09 pm

TonyIPI wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.


If this is true (and not saying it's not), strongly think the Tribe should consider moving him. Kid just doesn't look like he'll ever walk enough or hit enough to be a top of the lineup guy, and doesn't have the power to be in LF if he can't. Not sure the Tribe is sold on him either....or else why make such a huge offer to Beltran after signing Grady? :dunno:


Doubt they move him.....Indians are very high on him. Had they signed Beltran, then Brantley this season would have still played almost every day in all 3 outfield spots and some 1B.


Yeah...if Brantley played in RF, a LOT had to go wrong. I think the Tribe's faith in Brantley has been vastly overstated. Lots of whispers say they aren't sold on him. This is really a make or break year for him. He needs to step up and convince the Tribe he can take over CF next year. Do agree they aren't likely to trade him, but it's more cause Grady is no sure thing in CF (and we lack OF options in general).
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Mon Jan 23, 2012 7:37 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
TonyIPI wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:One clear omission IMO- Wolters. Brantley that high?


There is not a team I have talked to that does not like Brantley a lot. Everyone believes he may not be a star, but will be a good player for a very long time. Loved throughout the scouting/baseball community.


If this is true (and not saying it's not), strongly think the Tribe should consider moving him. Kid just doesn't look like he'll ever walk enough or hit enough to be a top of the lineup guy, and doesn't have the power to be in LF if he can't. Not sure the Tribe is sold on him either....or else why make such a huge offer to Beltran after signing Grady? :dunno:


Doubt they move him.....Indians are very high on him. Had they signed Beltran, then Brantley this season would have still played almost every day in all 3 outfield spots and some 1B.


Yeah...if Brantley played in RF, a LOT had to go wrong. I think the Tribe's faith in Brantley has been vastly overstated. Lots of whispers say they aren't sold on him. This is really a make or break year for him. He needs to step up and convince the Tribe he can take over CF next year. Do agree they aren't likely to trade him, but it's more cause Grady is no sure thing in CF (and we lack OF options in general).

Would you care to share who these whispers are from? I have not heard them from anyone of substance in the organization and Tony apparently has not either. Andrew doesn't mention it so you must have sources unfamiliar to the rest of us. I actually thought Brantley was doing a good job adapting to multiple positions on the field and batting order last year until he tried to play through injuries unsuccessfully. The biggest problem I see is that Brantley is injury prone and does not play nearly as well when less than 100%. Not an uncommon failing in such a young player. I figure if you can overlook those problems for his two OF associates, both of whom are veterans making $5M, then why go overboard with the criticism on a player who just completed his first full year in the MLs? Focus on Brantley after Choo and Sizemore hit LHP, defend and make the 20/20 club like they are paid to do. Just saying that Brantley's problems were small potatoes last year compared to the underperformance by Sizemore and Choo. If you don't agree, that's OK but not everyone sees the problem as Brantley. :pleasantry:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 12:31 am

indianinkslinger wrote:Would you care to share who these whispers are from? I have not heard them from anyone of substance in the organization and Tony apparently has not either. Andrew doesn't mention it so you must have sources unfamiliar to the rest of us. I actually thought Brantley was doing a good job adapting to multiple positions on the field and batting order last year until he tried to play through injuries unsuccessfully. The biggest problem I see is that Brantley is injury prone and does not play nearly as well when less than 100%. Not an uncommon failing in such a young player. I figure if you can overlook those problems for his two OF associates, both of whom are veterans making $5M, then why go overboard with the criticism on a player who just completed his first full year in the MLs? Focus on Brantley after Choo and Sizemore hit LHP, defend and make the 20/20 club like they are paid to do. Just saying that Brantley's problems were small potatoes last year compared to the underperformance by Sizemore and Choo. If you don't agree, that's OK but not everyone sees the problem as Brantley. :pleasantry:


Not sure why you're twisting my words here. I never said Brantley was "the" problem in the OF. I actually do not think he is the problem, but he is a problem. I simply am pointing out that offensively he's been very much below average, especially for a LFer. Choo and Grady are irrelevant in judging how Brantley has played. Whether they were playing at HOF levels or not makes no difference in an evaluation of Brantley. Simply pointing out that Brantley has not played the caliber of ball many had hoped he'd have played. He was a guy that looked like he could be a future leadoff man. Well, if he wants to be that he needs to get walk rate much, much higher than where it's currently at. He also was tabbed as a potential CF of the future after Grady...well, he's look pretty bad out there. There were reports that the Tribe wasn't sold on Brantley in CF from multiple sources. Can argue how accurate those printed reports were but the fact that the Tribe brought back Grady and tried to get Upton a couple times sort of validate those claims.

As far as you or Tony not hearing anything...Tony heard from after the 2009 season that the Indians "loved" Brantley and that they felt he was ML ready, and no way would they consider sending him back to AAA....well, 2 months later the indians signed Branyan as a way to in fact send Brantley back to AAA. Just cause the Indians are saying something to a guy like Tony, doesn't mean that's their true feeling. Not saying he is wrong on the Tribe's feelings (or you). I'm also not saying that the Indians hate Brantley or anything. He is still young and is athletic so worst case he's a solid 4th outfielder. But to me it's very clear that the Tribe is not sold on Brantley as being anything more than a potential 4th outfielder. Shouldn't be a surprise at all as he was arguably worse at the plate than LaPorta in 2011.


Since you brought up Choo (not sure why?) and hitting lefties...Choo actually put up a higher OBP agsinst lefties, than Brantley could even muster against righties this past year (.336 vs .335)....ouch. I definitely hope you're right and it was injuries, but unless you're saying he was hurt beginning of May, there isn't really anything to truly support that theory. Agree though, does seem to be prone to injury.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:11 am

Hermie13 wrote:
indianinkslinger wrote:Would you care to share who these whispers are from? I have not heard them from anyone of substance in the organization and Tony apparently has not either. Andrew doesn't mention it so you must have sources unfamiliar to the rest of us. I actually thought Brantley was doing a good job adapting to multiple positions on the field and batting order last year until he tried to play through injuries unsuccessfully. The biggest problem I see is that Brantley is injury prone and does not play nearly as well when less than 100%. Not an uncommon failing in such a young player. I figure if you can overlook those problems for his two OF associates, both of whom are veterans making $5M, then why go overboard with the criticism on a player who just completed his first full year in the MLs? Focus on Brantley after Choo and Sizemore hit LHP, defend and make the 20/20 club like they are paid to do. Just saying that Brantley's problems were small potatoes last year compared to the underperformance by Sizemore and Choo. If you don't agree, that's OK but not everyone sees the problem as Brantley. :pleasantry:


Not sure why you're twisting my words here. I never said Brantley was "the" problem in the OF. I actually do not think he is the problem, but he is a problem. I simply am pointing out that offensively he's been very much below average, especially for a LFer. Choo and Grady are irrelevant in judging how Brantley has played. Whether they were playing at HOF levels or not makes no difference in an evaluation of Brantley. Simply pointing out that Brantley has not played the caliber of ball many had hoped he'd have played. He was a guy that looked like he could be a future leadoff man. Well, if he wants to be that he needs to get walk rate much, much higher than where it's currently at. He also was tabbed as a potential CF of the future after Grady...well, he's look pretty bad out there. There were reports that the Tribe wasn't sold on Brantley in CF from multiple sources. Can argue how accurate those printed reports were but the fact that the Tribe brought back Grady and tried to get Upton a couple times sort of validate those claims.

As far as you or Tony not hearing anything...Tony heard from after the 2009 season that the Indians "loved" Brantley and that they felt he was ML ready, and no way would they consider sending him back to AAA....well, 2 months later the indians signed Branyan as a way to in fact send Brantley back to AAA. Just cause the Indians are saying something to a guy like Tony, doesn't mean that's their true feeling. Not saying he is wrong on the Tribe's feelings (or you). I'm also not saying that the Indians hate Brantley or anything. He is still young and is athletic so worst case he's a solid 4th outfielder. But to me it's very clear that the Tribe is not sold on Brantley as being anything more than a potential 4th outfielder. Shouldn't be a surprise at all as he was arguably worse at the plate than LaPorta in 2011.


Since you brought up Choo (not sure why?) and hitting lefties...Choo actually put up a higher OBP agsinst lefties, than Brantley could even muster against righties this past year (.336 vs .335)....ouch. I definitely hope you're right and it was injuries, but unless you're saying he was hurt beginning of May, there isn't really anything to truly support that theory. Agree though, does seem to be prone to injury.

Simply put, you cannot name a single source to support your statement. Sorry Hermie! This is unsupported conjecture and opinion and should be identified as such. You have a right to your opinion but identifying something as a thought expressed publically by a number of sources is nothing but that. As I said, that is fine on this site but don't put lipstick on a pig and call it Kate Beckinsdale.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby GeronimoSon » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:56 am

..don't put lipstick on a pig and call it Kate Beckinsdale....
I'm stealing this line... :rose:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:12 pm

indianinkslinger wrote:Simply put, you cannot name a single source to support your statement. Sorry Hermie! This is unsupported conjecture and opinion and should be identified as such. You have a right to your opinion but identifying something as a thought expressed publically by a number of sources is nothing but that. As I said, that is fine on this site but don't put lipstick on a pig and call it Kate Beckinsdale.


Must be that time of the month again.... :rolleyes:

I agree with your last statement though....which is why I'm not gonna sit here and talk up Brantley when he's been a bust to date.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby indianinkslinger » Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:28 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
indianinkslinger wrote:Simply put, you cannot name a single source to support your statement. Sorry Hermie! This is unsupported conjecture and opinion and should be identified as such. You have a right to your opinion but identifying something as a thought expressed publically by a number of sources is nothing but that. As I said, that is fine on this site but don't put lipstick on a pig and call it Kate Beckinsdale.


Must be that time of the month again.... :rolleyes:

I agree with your last statement though....which is why I'm not gonna sit here and talk up Brantley when he's been a bust to date.

My thoughts exactly! I have noticed you make this stuff up even more during certain lunar cycles. :s_omg Dr. Phil says that comes from your boyfriend biting you too hard during foreplay. Not sure about that. Could just be you trying to inflate your position through exagerations and false claims. I would be more convinced if I hear you howl tonight! :clapping:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:40 pm

indianinkslinger wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
indianinkslinger wrote:Simply put, you cannot name a single source to support your statement. Sorry Hermie! This is unsupported conjecture and opinion and should be identified as such. You have a right to your opinion but identifying something as a thought expressed publically by a number of sources is nothing but that. As I said, that is fine on this site but don't put lipstick on a pig and call it Kate Beckinsdale.


Must be that time of the month again.... :rolleyes:

I agree with your last statement though....which is why I'm not gonna sit here and talk up Brantley when he's been a bust to date.

My thoughts exactly! I have noticed you make this stuff up even more during certain lunar cycles. :s_omg Dr. Phil says that comes from your boyfriend biting you too hard during foreplay. Not sure about that. Could just be you trying to inflate your position through exagerations and false claims. I would be more convinced if I hear you howl tonight! :clapping:


Wow...
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby Pork Chop Pough » Thu Jan 26, 2012 12:40 am

MLB.com names Francisco Lindor #32 on their Top 100 prospect list.
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby MadThinker88 » Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:53 pm

My copy of the baseball America prospect handbook arrived today :biggrin: as did the 31st player per team supplement :clapping:

First off: tribe system is ranked 29th overall. :diablo: thanks for the bulletin board material guys. I have a feeling as many players return from injuries, the ranking will get back into the teens next year.

We have already seen the top 10 players listed so here is 11 thru 31
11. Elvis Araujo, lhp
12. Tyler Sturdevant, lhp
13. Ronny Rodriguez, SS
14. Jake Sisco, rhp (DS9)
15. Cord Phelps, 2b/SS
16. Trey Haley, rhp
17. Mike Rayl, lhp
18. Nick Weglarz, of
19. LeVon Washington, of
20. Felix Sterling, rhp
21. T.J. McFarland, lhp
22. Hector Rondon, rhp
23. Josh Judy, rhp
24. Bryce Stowell, rhp
25. Jesus Aguilar, 1b
26. Chun Chen, c
27. Jake Lowery, c/1b
28. Bryson Myles, of
29. Matt Packer, lhp
30. Jordan Smith, 3b/of
31. Dorssys Paulino, SS

Got to say, I'm surprised that Rob Bryson didn't make the list anywhere. Tony- please tell me I'm not heading down the Neil Wagner path with yet another bullpen guy. :dunno:
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Re: John Sickels Says WHAT??????

Postby jellis » Thu Jan 26, 2012 11:09 pm

Pork Chop Pough wrote:MLB.com names Francisco Lindor #32 on their Top 100 prospect list.


Sickles had him 31 of the top 50 bats, no pitcher made the top 50 and no other bat
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