September 28, 2012 at 2:08 pm
Anybody care to rank order Parker/Milone/Griffin/Straily for 2013?
September 28, 2012 at 2:30 pm
Yeah, I’ll go with Parker, Griffin, Straily, Milone.
-Parker first because he’s clearly shown sustained success over (nearly) a full season. He’s also been getting strikeouts at an increased rate in September and his control seems to be coming back more and more.
-Griffin second as I think he’s just got more advanced stuff than Milone. Similar control with a higher K rate. They both are FB pitchers (at almost the exact same rate, coincidentally), but Griffin nearly K’s 1 more per 9 with a minimally higher BB rate.
-Milone ahead of Straily for now because I’ll take the performance in the majors over potential at this point. Dunno how much better Milone can conceivably get, but he’s a pretty decent 3/4 in any rotation.
-I like Straily a lot, still, but damn man, that HR rate is atrocious. Having watched nearly every one of his starts I can’t tell you how frustrating it is. It’s like he just flips his brain off 2 or 3 times a start and serves up a BP fastball. His last start against Texas was encouraging (6.2 IP, 8K, 2BB, 1 HR) and I think he’ll certainly make some strides this offseason and during spring (BTW Griffin and Straily weren’t even with the A’s this Spring, AT ALL). Until he makes those improvements though, he’s last of the rookies.
September 28, 2012 at 3:36 pm
Now can we get an article about how the Rockies are defying odds by having every rookie pitcher suck?
September 28, 2012 at 4:32 pm
Parker has both the highest upside and the best sustained MLB performance so far. He is going to be really, really good.
Milone, amazingly, is probably still underrated. His control is incredible. The main knock on him has always been doubts about whether his stuff would translate to the major leagues. To me, it was just bias against a soft-tosser (seriously, I thought we were over that by now). His MLB numbers – league average swinging strike % and 6.5 K/9 – have proven that he can stick. Sure, as a soft-tossing flyballer he is going to get rocked occasionally, but right now he’s looking like Buerhle 2.0, which while not sexy is incredibly valuable. I think people still see that 87 MPH fastball and don’t quite believe he can sustain success. Don’t believe that B.S. He has proven the doubters wrong at every single step of his career.
I have Griffin and Straily lower only because of their short track records. They both had nice seasons (especially Griffin) in the lower minors last year, but neither was considered a real prospect until they broke out at AA and AAA this season. I like both a lot but I think some caution is warranted. There’s still a reasonable chance that one or both of them busts.
I put Griffin ahead because of the excellent run he’s had at the MLB level so far. I’m especially excited that the control has been there. I think Straily might have higher upside just based on how thoroughly he destroyed PCL hitters this year, but Griffin is probably more likely to stick.
One thing that’s a little concerning is how flyball-heavy all of them are besides Parker (and to some extent him as well). The Coliseum is giving them a big assist so far, but hopefully Milone/Griffin/Straily do get a few more grounders going forward.
Nick O says:
September 28, 2012 at 4:59 pm
Straily was pretty good about keeping the ball in the park in the minors this year. And he’s faced some pretty tough lineups his first 6 starts in the majors.
I’d put Parker as the clear #1, then Griffin, Straily, Milone, though you could convince me to put the last three in any order.
September 28, 2012 at 7:48 pm
One of my favorite stats about the A’s rookie dominance:
A’s rookie pitchers: 10.6 WAR
Entire Angels staff: 10.5 WAR
September 28, 2012 at 10:29 pm
Can anyone project their lineup next year?
September 29, 2012 at 1:36 am
Wait, where do you get that Milone’s control is “incredible”? I know he’s been better recently, but it’s not exactly spectacular… I have a hard time seeing his potential exceeding Griffin’s, TBH. And I liked Milone a lot this offseason, but outside of a couple of outstanding starts, he’s had some real trouble getting hitters to miss.
September 29, 2012 at 1:38 am
As an A’s fan I can certainly enjoy and appreciate this, but Dan Haren deserves better…
September 29, 2012 at 1:44 am
It’s actually much easier than the rotation order, IMO.
C- Norris/Kottaras (platoon until Norris proves he can be a regular)
1B- Carter/Moss (platoon seems to work fairly well, Carter can get some PAs against RHPs as DH)
2B- The only real mystery, although I think Weeks steals it back, considering his BB rate went up and K rate went down from last year. I think his BABIP normalizes to some extent, although there is plenty of discussion here.
SS- Unless Drew is against it, that mutual option looks mighty fine for both parties right now.
3B- Donaldson. His defense looks damn solid and his bat looks like it could be league average if he can continue to be the hitter he’s been since August, which I think it possible considering his LD rate and his relatively low K rate.
CF- Crisp, Cespy when he’s not healthy
LF- Smith/Gomes (pretty obvious re-signing here, it’s mutual judging by media accounts).
Not the prettiest lineup, but considering they were putting Brandon Moss at short, Kila Ka’sifhegr’u/ Daric Barton at 1st and a whole cast of characters at other places early on, this team could have won 90+ easily this year.
Next year should be a lot of fun, no matter what.
September 29, 2012 at 3:32 am
Seems you’ve forgotten their best player, or think Cespedes will be traded for someone not good enough to make the team. Leaving their best player and likely MVP candidate next year off your list is bad form for an A’s fan.
Further, since Drew’s arrival, Pennington has been fantastic. It’s likely Weeks get at least another half year in AAA to prove he’s ready to be a MLB regular, meanwhile Penny plays a solid average 2B.
September 29, 2012 at 3:53 am
Scott Sizemore will be back next year and has to at least be mentioned in the 3B spot. It would have been his job to lose if he weren’t hurt in spring training.
September 29, 2012 at 9:57 am
He walked less than one batter per nine innings in AAA last season. While striking out more than a batter per inning.
His BB/9 is 6th in the majors among qualified starters this season, and among the top 10 he has the 3rd best K/9. He’s got great control and is generating strikeouts at a more than adequate rate.
We’ll see what happens next year, but there are very, very few pitchers (Cliff Lee, Mark Buerhle, and….?) who can sustain a BB/9 under two. Based on Milone’s minor league performance and MLB performance so far, he looks like he might be one of them.
September 29, 2012 at 11:30 am
Sizemore might move over to second base, his natural position.
Depends on whether Drew comes back. The A’s would want him even at the $10 million option, but it’s a mutual option so he might prefer to test the free agent waters.
September 29, 2012 at 1:00 pm
Whoops! hahaha. I certainly meant to include him in left. I put him as Crisp’s backup at CF and then forgot to include him again. Although since Crisp seems to have trouble playing everyday for over a month at a time, Yoenis should get plenty of time in center…
September 30, 2012 at 1:51 am
Uzr loves Donaldson. Sizemore not so much at 3rd. Another nice platoon if needed.
10-15 HR with Sizemore at 2nd looks nice. Cliff would need to be the back-up SS/2b. Weeks has no place.
Norris needs another year in AAA. Sign another C for 1 yr. platoon with Kottaras.
September 30, 2012 at 11:13 am
This should not be that big of a surprise to anyone who follows the A’s. They are excellent at scouting, signing, developing, and ushering young pitchers to the major leagues. They have been doing it for years. They are good at it, and it keeps them from having to risk big bucks to free agent pitchers that are often not worth their contracts.
If I wanted to improve my franchise in a hurry, I’d hire those folks away from the A’s. Next, I’d go after the Rays scouts.
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