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  1. Good writeups, Marc. You’re right – this system has grown thanks to the 2009 Draft (even though they went after fairly safe, signable guys at the top) & also the Danny Haren deal. I’m not as high on Chris Owings as you & many others, but I think your list is well done. I am intrigued to see Jarrod Parker this year also as he should move quickly. I’m high on Matt Davidson as well & wouldn’t be surprised to see him settle in as a Matt Williams type (big, not super athletic CI middle of the order force) when he fulfills his potential. The power is very real & his plate discipline is already pretty good – he’s well past Bobby Borchering at this point. I think both end up at 1b though ultimately although at least Davidson has a fighting chance to stick.

    I would go:

    1) Parker
    2) Davidson
    3) Tyler Skaggs
    4) Patrick Corbin
    5) Borchering
    6) Keon Broxton (tools galore – 19 3bs)
    7) Wade Miley (have liked him for awhile as well)
    8) Paul Goldschmidt
    9) Patrick Schuster (Projectable – not unlike Corbin actually)
    10) Marc Krauss (not sure he’s a regular – maybe a poor man’s Matt Stairs at best – just in over AJ Pollock who had a nice AFL performance & Owings)

    Comment by S.M. Jenkins — February 21, 2011 @ 11:42 am

  2. Their farm has the potential to be much scarier too when you consider the fact that they have two top 10 picks in the upcoming draft.

    Comment by Chops — February 21, 2011 @ 11:46 am

  3. Umm… Chris Young is still the D-backs’ center fielder. He’s not a former outfielder by any means.

    Comment by big league chew — February 21, 2011 @ 12:09 pm

  4. toronto also converted Brett Cecil from closer to starter

    Comment by Eric — February 21, 2011 @ 12:22 pm

  5. Right, sorry… meant former White Sox (team that drafted him) prospect.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 21, 2011 @ 1:15 pm

  6. Would it really be smart to have Parker in the majors by the end of the year? His stuff and command will probably play down a bit in his first year back from TJ and it’s not like the Dbacks are going to look real competitive this year. Why would you rush him?

    Comment by Preston — February 21, 2011 @ 2:15 pm

  7. The Dbacks system is promising and could be right near the top by next year’s rankings. The big league club is struggling, but they have some talent coming up in a couple years.

    Comment by Jason — February 21, 2011 @ 2:16 pm

  8. Once again — it’s Ohio University — not the “University of Ohio”

    We already went over this last season.

    Comment by Joseph — February 21, 2011 @ 2:16 pm

  9. Right on.

    And can you please list the actual HS in Florida, not Florida HS. Without this amount of detail the article is useless.

    Comment by Max — February 21, 2011 @ 2:21 pm

  10. Some of you are nuts. This system is in the 20’s still. They lack depth. If they don’t go cheap on one of their high picks, yes there could be a big bump, but this system has a lot of work to do.

    There are a ton of Keon Broxton types in baseball. He is still an athlete that hasn’t figured out how to play baseball yet.

    Comment by johan — February 21, 2011 @ 2:24 pm

  11. They have a couple of huge tools outfielders besides Broxton, including Ty Linton, who they gave $1.4 mil to last year to keep away from North Carolina. I at least agree that it’s not a top 10 system, though.

    Comment by Paul — February 21, 2011 @ 2:42 pm

  12. I would argue that the region is more important than the actual school.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 21, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

  13. Yes, I agree – I think they’re somewhere between 15th & 20th at best. Not a lot of uber high ceiling guys. No way I would have slotted them ahead of Colorado &/or Cleveland to name but a couple.

    At least it’s serviceable now as it was pretty barren in early 2009.

    Comment by S.M. Jenkins — February 21, 2011 @ 3:41 pm

  14. I must enjoy (subconsciously, of course) pissing you off.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 21, 2011 @ 3:54 pm

  15. Still trying to figure out why everyone likes Krauss better than Goldschmidt.

    Same age.

    Neither can play defense.

    Both K too often for comfort — 141 vs. 161.

    They both drew 57 BB last season.

    Yet one had 110 extra points of OPS, and he’s the lower rated prospect?

    Comment by dirtbag — February 21, 2011 @ 11:04 pm

  16. I have to get this out. Rankings the Diamondbacks 10th is really odd to me. Jarrod Parker is the only legit projected All Star type in this system. You have systems like Seattle that can boast 3 guys at the top in Pineda, Franklin, and Ackley who have that potential, and Seattle doesn’t lack depth either. There are some big time upside guys like Pimentel, Castillo, and James Jones. I would take the teams you have listed 11-18 for sure over Arizona.

    What are you guys seeing?

    Its a legit question to spur some debate on this, not just trying to be a jerk.

    Comment by johan — February 22, 2011 @ 1:23 am

  17. I looked up Keith Law’s org rankings and he has ARZ at 14 and I think BA is around the same too but I can reference their handbook tonight to check… The organization has a lot of high-ceiling talent in the Top 10… and some intriguing depth. I’m comfortable with where I ranked them. It’s definitely weighted more on projection than “proven” results.

    I really don’t like Seattle’s depth and their high-ceiling, high-bust prospects have a lot more holes in their game than Arizon’s from my personal opinion and observation.

    As for Krauss vs Goldschmidt, the former has a tad more positional value and also looked pretty good in the AFL. Despite it being small-sample, he’s a little more proven against the better pitching. From watching both, I think Krauss has a better idea at the plate than Goldschmidt. I don’t think Klaw, Goldstein or BA had these guys flipped in their rankings, either, so it’s pretty much a consensus.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 22, 2011 @ 11:24 am

  18. Krauss and Broxton are WAYYYYYYYY tooo high.

    Comment by Zephon — February 22, 2011 @ 11:29 am

  19. I’m with you & I had Goldschmidt pegged a bit higher on my list above for many of the reasons that you namecheck here.

    Comment by S.M. Jenkins — February 22, 2011 @ 1:13 pm

  20. Keith Law & Kevin Goldstein liked Krauss better than Goldschmidt?

    Well, I guess that’s that.. I mean they were all so high on Brandon Belt last year.

    Comment by S.M. Jenkins — February 22, 2011 @ 1:14 pm

  21. Pretty much all the well-respected scouting/ranking publications and writers would disagree but you’re welcome to your opinion.

    I love that you supported your opinion with evidence.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 22, 2011 @ 1:42 pm

  22. Want some evidence? Keon Broxton struck out in well over 30% of his at bats. While he did show some plate discipline, his OPS was. 675. Not exactly flashing above average power either. He is 6’3″, so the assumption from the scouting perspective is that he is going to fill out a little more and add some pop, hopefully while not taking away from his athleticism. He did steal 21 bases, though he was caught 13 times. All this while playing at 20 years old in Low A.

    Lets compare Broxton to another young athlete in the same league. On a team ranked 28th here by fangraphs. Detroit’s Avisail Garcia. Garcia played the league at 19 years old. Struck out about 10% less, stole 20 bases, was caught only 4 times, Garcia is already a big dude, and still has maintained the athleticism. The power, like Broxton, hasn’t come yet, but its expected to. Oh, and Garcia is a plus defender as well.

    See, every team has these type of players.

    Comment by johan — February 22, 2011 @ 4:04 pm

  23. What you need to do, though, is grasp the ideal of projection. If you listen to the scouts and watch Broxton play, there is definite skill there and his ceiling is massive if he makes adjustments. Yes, Garcia is a similar player. I don’t personally like him as much but I would rank him in the 11-13 range for Tiger prospects. If you want to nitpick on him, though, from a stats standpoint, he benefited from a high BABIP and, although, his strikeout rate is lower, he has less patience and has less power (ISO below .100). Broxton has high Ks but also high BBs. If he can, through experience, gain better pitch recognition and stay back on the off-speed stuff, he should improve significantly. Pitch recognition, I would argue, is easier to correct than impatience.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — February 22, 2011 @ 4:52 pm

  24. I have a firm ideal of projection. What you need to do is relax when someone brings something to the table that doesnt agree with your guys’ predictions. You see, I’m not your average fan, Im very aware of projection, and Broxton’s athleticism. I know he played in South Bend, because I’ve watched him, along with Borchering and Davidson, and I can assure you I’ve seen plenty of players with Broxton’s skill set and projection come through the midwest league. That doesn’t mean he isn’t a talent, it just means he doesn’t have the ability to translate his athleticism to baseball skills on a day to day basis right now. Much like Garcia, though Garcia does it a little more often, even with the lack of patience.

    The Diamondbacks have 4 or 5 big time power bats, a handful of big upside guys (not unusual), and beyond Parker and Skaggs, a bunch of pedestrian pitching. Its not a top 10 system. Last years draft was pretty well known for being pretty darn subpar, and that would include Loux if they had signed them. That was the best thing they did. Rowland and J.R. Bradley may have some projection on their frames, but neither is exactly a prospect that wow’s anybody yet.

    I get these system rankings are subjective. Just you guys are clearly higher on the D Backs, than a lot of guys. Just wondering why.

    By the way, Baseball America has the D Backs ranked as the 22nd best system.

    Comment by johan — February 22, 2011 @ 6:10 pm

  25. Because he hit 98 mph in Instructs and his stuff isn’t going to play down this year?

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:40 pm

  26. That’s a bit of a stretch. And by “bit of a stretch,” I mean “factually incorrect.”

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:41 pm

  27. Supposedly his swing is smoother/better. Which, I suppose, is why reviews from the AFL said “slow bat” and his LD Rate last year stunk.

    I’m with you as well.

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:42 pm

  28. Skaggs is a #2 guy, Davidson is a well-above-average everyday 3B, Owings has a better chance of sticking at SS than Franklin (with potential for a plus bat as well), and while there are plenty of tools guys in the minors, most of them are inferior to Broxton. There’s plenty of depth here, too, despite the strange rumblings here to the contrary.

    I wouldn’t put it at #10 either, but it certainly belongs in the teens.

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:45 pm

  29. Not to be a jerk (but I am about to be, though I feel it’s slightly warranted), but I love that you felt the need to be snarky to a random commenter for no apparent reason, especially after saying (rightly so) that he’s entitled to his opinion.

    There absolutely are arguments for putting Krauss and Broxton lower.

    Krauss’ LD-Rate was terrible this year – check Jeff Sackmann’s data or StatCorner, and get back to me on whether or not he’ll sustain a .366 BABIP in the upper levels. Even though he put up numbers in the AFL, he got off to a terrible start there, and his bat is commonly perceived as quite slow. His wOBA+ for the Rawhide was 107 (, and once the hit distribution peripherals come back to earth, he doesn’t have defensive value to fall back on. We could be looking at the next Cyle Hankerd here.

    As for Broxton, he clearly needs to do a ton of work. The fact that he played in South Bend is a point in his favor, as his overall numbers weren’t exactly devastatingly low compared to league average, but the K-Rate is inexcusable, particularly since he lost the home run power he flashed in 2009 at Missoula.

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:55 pm

  30. For what it’s worth, the D-backs have a decent amount of lower-level pitching depth. Holmberg, Bradley, Rowland, Green, Perry, and Schuster all have solid upsides, and Brewer, Anderson, and Smith are impressive in their own rites (particularly Brewer).

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 7:58 pm

  31. You’re a bit too high on Schuster. His delivery and wind-up need refining in order to improve his currently-spotty control, which is too much of a work in progress right now to keep him ranked ahead of guys like Holmberg, Pollock, and certainly Owings.

    Comment by Dan — February 22, 2011 @ 8:00 pm

  32. I don’t have issue with them being in the back half of the teens. Franklin’s bat is more of a sure thing than Owings in my opinion, and it has the upside to play at 3B if he doesn’t stick at SS. Athleticism isn’t an issue with Franklin either by any means, so at this point I gotta go with Franklin right now.

    A guy nobody talks about with the Mariners is Mauricio Robles. I watched him extensively. He is filthy. He does have trouble with command, but he has at least mid rotation potential, maybe with a little more.

    Basically when Im looking at top 30, and from going to games, and reading all the scouting reports, the D Backs system is getting better, it just doesn’t match up to me with other teams this high.

    Comment by johan — February 22, 2011 @ 8:15 pm

  33. I am familiar with those guys. Until Bradley and Rowland get some mph on their fastballs, they are going to struggle a bit. They are big kids, so they have that chance. I like Green. He to me, along with Linton were the best picks the D Backs made in the draft last year.

    Holmberg is another ho hum lefty to me.

    The Diamondbacks are an organization right now that have the potential to take off. I will agree to that.

    Comment by johan — February 22, 2011 @ 8:20 pm

  34. Nice write ups. I agree with most of it except Mike Belfiore. I saw him pitch for South Bend and was disappointed. He wasn’t impressive at all. If any pitcher from South Bend should get on this list it should be Kevin Munson. Granted, he is a little older than a lot of players in that league but he has pretty good stuff. I wouldn’t be surprised if he had a spot in the Diamondbacks bullpen in a couple years. Hopefully I am wrong about Belfiore and he develops into a good player but I don’t see him as a top 10 prospect at this time.

    Comment by JC — February 23, 2011 @ 12:10 pm

  35. BP also rips Goldschmidt for his “massive uppercut” swing.

    I must be missing something…

    Comment by dirtbag — February 24, 2011 @ 2:09 pm

  36. I have to laugh sometimes when I read these boards. How often are these assessments even close to the way things really pan out? Guys that are dissed can become stars and guys that are exalted can also fall flat. Still I guess the fun is in the guessing, but as much as we all might like it, success is not always predictable, otherwise scouts wouldn’t face the challenges that they do. Have fun as long as you don’t have too much pride about accuracy. :)

    Comment by albert — February 27, 2011 @ 12:01 am

  37. Your list should have included Goldschmidt. He just was the first one called up out of all your prospects.

    Comment by Blumer — July 31, 2011 @ 3:45 pm

  38. Time to revise this list!

    Comment by Barry — December 23, 2011 @ 9:42 am

  39. I am amused that no one on this thread has mentioned Josh Collmenter, who zoomed up to become the D’backs third-best starter. Can he sustain that production with an 87 mph fastball? When you factor in a drop-dead change, decent curve and excellent command – not to mention that tomahawk delivery – I see a very useful guy who can be at least a solid fourth starter for years to come.

    Comment by Ken — February 8, 2012 @ 6:39 pm

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