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  1. Thank you for the bit on Hollingsworth. Allows fun watching someone your age from your hometown make it.

    Comment by U-G — April 29, 2010 @ 11:13 am

  2. I follow the sox pretty closely, but I haven’t heard of Lavarnway or Middlebrooks. None of the three are even in the Sox top 20 prospect list. Do you think that might change soon? Do you see any of these guys sustaining their production?

    Comment by Shaggychild — April 29, 2010 @ 1:02 pm

  3. I guess I’m surprised Middlebrooks isn’t well-known in the Sox community, if only because he was a significant signing — they gave him $925,000 to give up on football. He’s the best prospect of the three, because I see real improvement this season, plus he has some solid tools. Lavarnway you would have only heard about it because he’s a semi-local kid, but he’s also a bat-first guy that hasn’t hit above A-ball. He shouldn’t be on the radar until he proves he can catch or hit advanced pitching.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — April 29, 2010 @ 1:06 pm

  4. Middlebrooks was #21 on soxprospects.com. He has been something of a disappointment until about June of last year, so people may have forgotten about him. He has a 5 page, 99 comment thread on Sons of Sam Horn, but only 3 comments since the 2010 season started and only one in the offseason.

    Lavarnway is blocked as a catcher by Wagner, Exposito, and Fedorowicz. The recent Cuban signing also may jump ahead of him. I tend to disagree with Brian a bit on whether they should commit to him as a catcher. To tell you how buried he is in the system, he does not have a prospect thread on SoSH’s “Adopt a Prospect” subforum. At this point, he might be better off as a corner OF/1b who can be a 3d catcher. Alternatively, he needs to be moved to another organization.

    Comment by JCA — April 29, 2010 @ 2:12 pm

  5. My one disagreement would be that he’s blocked by Federowicz, who I don’t think a whole lot of. He very well might be a corner guy in the end, but he hasn’t been catching very long, and it seems a waste to cut the experiment short. I don’t really know how you’d do it, given the system’s catching depth, but I think you’d really be short-changing Lavarnway if you didn’t leave him behind the plate a while longer.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — April 29, 2010 @ 3:34 pm

  6. Shows you how deep the Sox system is that none of these three guys were in the top 15 to start the season.

    Comment by Joseph — April 29, 2010 @ 6:35 pm

  7. Sorry if this has already been covered somewhere, but is there a reason that there are no 2010 minor league stats yet?

    Comment by MattB — April 29, 2010 @ 7:47 pm

  8. Why are you so concerned about Clemens’ strikeout rate at first base? His career rate is only 21% which is pretty ordinary for a slugger.

    Yes, he’s struck out 31% of the time this year, but the sample size isn’t large enough for it to have stabilized yet (only 86 plate appearances).

    Also, even 31% would not be something that would prevent him from starting if he keeps demonstrating this kind of pop in his bat. Look at Adam Dunn (32.4%), Ryan Howard (32.3%), Mark Reynolds (37.4%)… okay, so maybe you think that’s too optimistic a power projection. How about Russell Branyan (38.9%), Carlos Pena (30.9%), etc.

    Sure, Clemens still has a lot to prove, but I think I don’t think you can bet on him not being able to start. By the way, I’m not sure why scouts aren’t impressed with his power; he’s short, but bulky for his height, and he has a wicked uppercut swing with good bat speed.

    Comment by OremLK — April 30, 2010 @ 11:25 am

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