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Al Skorupa FanGraphs Draft Chat – 6/6/13

Posted By Paul Swydan On June 6, 2013 @ 5:15 pm In Chat | 8 Comments

5:27
Al Skorupa: Welcome to the chat! Please leave your questions and we’ll be starting around 6:30. In the meantime I’ve got some videos for you related to the latest rumors from my buddies Steve Fiorindo and Tyler Bullock.
5:27
E Tyler Bullock:
5:27
Steve Fiorindo:
5:59
Al Skorupa: I wanted to discuss some draft basics before we begin. First off, let’s remember that the baseball amateur draft is a different creature than the other pro sports drafts. We hear a lot about “best player available,” but this draft has never really been about that – it’s about the best mix of value and talent. Cost is a major part of the equation. This isn’t teams being cheap – this is about how to best use limited resources on some… less than stable investments. As a logical extension of that, prior to the new slotting could a team have gone crazy and spent four times what every other team spent and got great results? Yes… but at a very poor ROI. Projecting teenagers and young men physically and in terms of how their skills would develop is HARD. Just like the people around you in your life when you were young there are an infinite number of variable that will determine their success or failure in life. This is very, very far from an exact science and that’s why I have a tremendous amount of respect for amateur scouts and the near impossible job they’re given.
6:03
Al Skorupa: I also think a common misconception is that there is a real consensus out there on players. There really isn’t much of a consensus. Scouts differ all the time on players. It’s pretty wide open. Watching some of these guys on the Cape last year who will be taken early tonight and I’d come across cross checkers who would tell me a guy nearly everyone projects for the first round “can’t hit” and they wouldn’t take him. Teams look for different things. Individual scouts look for different things and the process is nowhere as exact as many people imagine.
6:05
Al Skorupa: That brings me to… myself. Who am I and why is it worth you reading my chat? Well, I write about prospects for Fangraphs and you can find my work other places – primarily bullpenbanter.com, a site I started with fellow FG prospects writer JD Sussman and a few other talented writers. I do a lot of amateur coverage over there and I’m glad to bring some of it over to FG since I enjoy watching amateurs (as opposed to minor leaguers – who I also enjoy watching!).

6:11
Al Skorupa: I live in Rhode Island and I spend the Spring covering a lot of high school and college baseball, seeing the best local kids and the best national prospects coming in to the bigger schools in the Northeast. In the summer I cover the Cape Cod League heavily. It’s a great organization and league and extremely well run with a lot of good people involved. The best college players head out there every year and it gives me a fantastic opportunity to scope out the talent for the next year’s draft. I also cover the NECBL, which is a similar summer wooden bat league that features more freshman and sophomores who won’t be eligible for another year. In the fall I do some prep events and College Scout days. It gives me a good smattering of the Draft class and I fill in the rest with contacts in the industry, other writers (like the fine folks at Bullpen Banter), video, etc… My expertise leans more to the college side of things given the players I get to see, but I’ve seen many of the best preps live, too, including Rob Kaminsky, Tom Milone, Oscar Mercado, Zach Collins… I’m not a scout – I’m a writer, but I use a radar gun and a stopwatch and I like to think I have a pretty good eye for baseball and judging talent.
6:14
Al Skorupa: I’ll stop this monologue and start answering questions in a few I promise! Haha… but I wanted to lay a little more groundwork about the draft. So what’s going on with the #1 overall pick? The Astros seem intent on trying to do the same thing they did last year with Carlos Correa – which is sign a player below slot so they can spread that money elsewhere. At this point the rumor is they’re negotiating with North Carolina third baseman Colin Moran and Texas prep RHP Kohl Stewart.
6:21
Al Skorupa: What do we mean by “spread the money around?” Well… the new slotting system affords teams with the first pick a great opportunity. Picks after the 10th round have a cap of $100,000. Picks in the first 10 rounds have a defined slot cap. Your team receives X amount of “cap space” that = the amount of all your first 10 round picks combined. You can go slightly over before increasingly harsher penalties begin. If you sign a player for *under* their slot value you can use than money to offer *over* slot bonuses to your other picks. Thus, if you decide to “punt” say, your 6th round pick and sign him for something very cheap like $5,000 (well below the slot for that pick) any savings between that amount and the slot bonus can be used to go over slot on your other picks. The 1st overall pick has such a high slot ($7.79m) that you can still sign a great player for $4-5m and use the savings elsewhere… basically getting the equivalent of a couple extra picks in the back of the first round. In a draft without a Strasburg, Harper or consensus top talent this is a great way to infuse your farm system with talent and still get a very good player with 1:1.
6:25
alskor:
6:26
Al Skorupa: That’s video of mine of Mark Appel from the Cape a couple years back. They’re discussing New Jersey prep lefty Rob Kaminsky right now. I saw his last start of the year. Video below (thoughts later!)
6:27
alskor:
6:29
Al Skorupa: If you like watching videos, over at Bullpen Banter we collected a bunch here, by the way: http://bullpenbanter.com/2013-mlb-draft-preview-top-50-prospects/
6:31
Al Skorupa: Alright, let’s get this started! Thanks for reading. I hope you’re all as excited for this as I am. The process by which teams acquire talent is perhaps the most interesting part of baseball for me.
6:32
Comment From Ian
Who do you think is the best bet to be picked at #7 by the Red Sox? Kohl Stewart, Clint Frazier, and Austin Meadows look like popular choices from analysts so far…
6:33
Al Skorupa: My money would be on Frazier – and I think that’s the right choice. Frazier and Kohl Stewart have been tied to them the most… but they’re difficult to pin down and have heavily scouted a lot of different guys. They shifted some things around and added former MLB pitcher Brian Moehler to their amateur scouting staff to help cover the State of Georgia (big year for Georgia).
6:34
Comment From Matt
this sounds should be we be worried about the amount of where on a four year college pitchers arm vs. that of high school pitcher?
6:35
Al Skorupa: Really depends on the guy, the coach, the program, etc… and the build and maturity of the player. For instance, Branden Shipley out of New Mexico and Kyle Zimmer last year converted to pitching late and are fresh arms. If you buy the whole “injury nexus” stuff (and I do somewhat) then you also see college guys as much more proven commodities who have shown some durability.
6:36
Comment From Tex2044
What are your thoughts on Kaminsky? I know he isn’t likely to add velo, but he can maintain his 91-94 deeper into games w/ a pro strength&conditioning program.
6:38
Al Skorupa: Hi Tex. I see Kaminsky as a #3 starter type – but they guy has most of the skills for that already. For me he was a little softer than that (sitting 88-91) but a) he was on 4 days rest (ie pro rest); b) it was legit 90 degrees out; and c) he reached back for 93-94 whenever he needed it with no problem. My concerns largely revolve around lack of size (both in terms of plane and durability). But man… he’s going to be a successful pro pitcher.
6:38
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Put the following in the correct order: a.) Kris Bryant hits his first big league HR. b.) Mark Appel records his first big league win. c.) Jonathan Gray strikes out 10 batters in one game.
6:39
Al Skorupa: Haha… mostly spitballing here, obviously. Let’s go Appel first, then Bryant and then Gray. All could happen in a short time period, though.
6:39
Comment From Andrew
Who do you see the Phillies taking with their first round pick?
6:41
Al Skorupa: They love athletes and raw tools. On my board I have JP Crawford in that spot and that could make a little sense. Could also see Ryne Stanek or maybe even Austin Wilson (though would be surprised to see him so high).
6:41
Comment From hiya
I’m moving to Providence–any recommendations on places to eat?
6:42
Al Skorupa: Providence has a tremendous amount of great places to eat. Known for it. Try grilled pizza anywhere on Federal Hill.
6:42
Comment From hiya
What do you think of the Astros below the slot strategy?
6:43
Al Skorupa: In a neutral context it’s a great idea. Hard to tell how much of the stuff we’re hearing is bargaining… but I’d just pay Gray or Appel. No need to get too cute here. Not sure Moran is a 1:1 talent even though you’re getting a solid player.
6:43
Comment From Neil
Who is your favorite draft/prospect writer to read who doesn’t work for one of the sites you do?
6:45
Al Skorupa: There are so many great authors. Pat Ebert and Frank Piliere of Perfect Game are excellent. Kiley McDaniel, who wrote for FG for awhile is very good. The BA and BP staffs always do a great job, too. Jim Callis, Conor Glassey, Aaron Fitt, Nick Faleris. Seems like there is better content out there than ever these days.
6:45
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Gray’s coach at Oklahoma says that “(Gray) is more polished than Strasburg was at this point.” Is there anything to this, or just silly redneck banter?
6:46
Al Skorupa: I heard that on the radio. I’d say that’s more college coach talk… but I see where he’s coming from. Strasburg pitched in a lower profile conference for San Diego State… but my answer would easily be Stras.
6:46
Comment From Robot Ump
Any players projected to go in the top 10 that may fall to the second half of the first round?
6:47
Al Skorupa: This year? Definitely. Austin Meadows, Trey Ball and Reese McGuire could all go in the top 10 but lack obvious landing spots if things fall a certain way.
6:47
Comment From hiya
Sean Manaea going to get drafted?
6:49
Al Skorupa: Oh he’ll get drafted. The big question is whether he’ll get drafted somewhere where he can get offered enough to sign. Was just talking a scout and he brought up Washington as a great Manaea landing spot with their recent proclivity for injury question pitchers (Giolito, Purke, etc…). Really hard to say what happens with Manaea. He could very easily head back to school and try to reestablish his value. Coming off a dominant Cape League last summer he was poised to go top 5 or 10.
6:50
alskor:
6:51
Al Skorupa: That’s some video of Sean from last year I took. Very nice kid. Quirky lefty type though! His best pitch is a devastating split change his roomate taught him the grip for.
6:52
:
6:53
Al Skorupa: That’s his Split Change grip.
6:54
Al Skorupa: Sean was nice enough to show me after a dominant outing in Hyannis in front of a LOT of MLB brass. I never saw him as a potential Ace type… but he’s an arm I’d love to add to my organization if I were a SD.
6:54
Comment From hiya
Why aren’t international players included in the draft, I don’t get it.
6:55
Al Skorupa: It’s a complex issue. I can’t answer it all here, but be aware that there are a lot of negative ramifications to that. When Puerto Rico was added to the draft kids started playing other sports more, for example.
6:55
Comment From Rob
Who’s your BPA?
6:56
Al Skorupa: I’d take Jonathan Gray right now… but price tag info I’m not privy to might change things.
6:56
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
The WCC has had a great showing in the MLB draft the last few years– is it time America starts to pay a little more attention to that conference?
6:57
Al Skorupa: They have – and they’re going to have a big first day today! There are a lot of WCC guys who are going to get popped in the early rounds.
6:57
Comment From Marcus A..
Would the Mariners actually pass on Clint Frazier if he’s available at 12?
6:58
Al Skorupa: I don’t think he’s going to be there. Seattle has some pressure on them right now… not sure what the plan is there. A lot of teams in the middle of the first seem to prefer to wait for the draft to come to them with the top so unsettled.
6:58
Comment From Laffs
Tell more jokes!
6:58
Al Skorupa: A baseball draftee walks into a bar – OUCH! /rimshot
6:58
Comment From Hecubot
Is there anything more disappointing for draft followers than a first round pick on a “safe” college position player? As an A’s fan I’ll be sorely disappointed if they pick a fourth outfielder like Philip Ervin or (even worse) Aaron Judge and his questionable hit tool when there are ace quality prep arms (Krook?) still on the board.
7:00
Al Skorupa: Well… amateur scouts don’t think that way. They like sure things. I don’t always agree with that mindset, but it is very hard to get a major league regular so I definitely see where they’re coming from.

Fwiw, I love Phil Ervin and I think he’s going to be a very good major leaguer. Judge is a bit more of a risk, but he’ll be regular as well I think. Krook is kind of a project.

7:00
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Shipley is Nevada Reno
7:00
Al Skorupa: Right, yes, Sorry! Think I said New Mexico
7:01
Comment From Evan C.
Where do you think Serrano would go without the signability issues?
7:01
Al Skorupa: Maybe something like 10-20 range… but all the guys there have signability infused in their evaluation as well, so hard to say in a vacuum.
7:01
Comment From DANIEL
What does Colin Moran’s future power look like on the 20-80? good bat, focuses on the other way, but can he hit 25-35 homers?
7:02
Al Skorupa: I don’t think so and that’s one of the reason I wouldn’t be thrilled to take him in the top few picks. I see maybe average power – but more gaps than over the fences. Also don’t love the glove. He’s a very good high floor guy who will hit in the majors but you can do better with a top 3 pick.
7:04
Comment From SC
How difficult is it to teach an 18 Year Old Like Bickford a workable breaking pitch? Is lacking one a big deal because one’s unlikely to develop one or because of the developmental costs associating with developing one (longer time to reach majors). I find this interesting because I always thought that HS’s shouldn’t really work on Breaking Stuff until they’re Physical Development is nearing completion (16-18)
7:05
Al Skorupa: There’s a lot more going on in evaluating that then just looking at present skills. Throwing a breaking balls requires hand speed and tactile strength. Even if it doesn’t come along guys can end up throwing a slide piece that works well. I’m high on Bickford and I don’t see it as a big issue.
7:05
Steve Fiorindo:
7:06
Al Skorupa: Steve Fiorindo with an excellent Bickford vid there. Steve is the man!
7:06
Al Skorupa: Here we go!
7:06
Al Skorupa: (turn on MLB network!)
7:07
Comment From Max
Do you believe Kohl Stewart is truly in play for the Astros at #1?
7:08
Al Skorupa: I don’t think they decided until a few minutes ago. They didn’t last year. All depends what $ he wants. It does take a big set to take a high school RHP 1:1. There’s now a stigma attached to that. If you trust your talent evaluators (and Houston has some GREAT ones) I wouldn’t let it put me off taking him.
7:08
Comment From Guest
Does a players roots or college location get taken into consideration by MLB teams?
7:09
Al Skorupa: I mean… yes, but one factor among MANY. Scouts and xcheckers and SDs are more friendly with certain coaches, etc… and SDs also trust certain area supervisors more than others so you see a team often draft from a certain area because of that.
7:10
Comment From Vinny
frazier vs meadows, what are your quick thoughts?
7:10
Al Skorupa: Splitting hairs in some ways… Like both, but have more confidence in Frazier.
7:10
Comment From Bill
It’s been rumored that the Rockies might cut a deal with Dominic Smith. Do you think there is anything behind that?
7:10
Al Skorupa: I’m hearing they’re on Bryant. We shall see.
7:12
Al Skorupa: So it’s Stanford’s Mark Appel. I like the pick.
7:13
Al Skorupa: I’ve been an Appel fan for awhile and he was 3rd on my board last year. I saw him at his best for Yarmouth-Dennis
7:13
Steve Fiorindo:
7:13
Al Skorupa: Here’s a more recent Appel vid by Steve F.
7:13
Comment From E.Tyler Bullock
How did you not tell him Casserta’s!!!!!!!!!!!!
7:14
Al Skorupa: The best! (Providence food)
7:14
Comment From DANIEL
Does Appel pitch in the majors this year?
7:14
Al Skorupa: What’s the rush? Will he make or break the Stros’ season? Won’t be a on a MLB deal since those don’t exist for draftees anymore… so not on the 40 man. No reason to burn an option.
7:15
Comment From Guest
How big can a HS pitcher improves his fastball velocity?
7:15
Al Skorupa: Physical growth. Getting bigger and getting stronger. Cleaned up and smoothed out mechanics under higher level coaching. Long toss!
7:16
Comment From asdfasdf
Wow Harold Reynolds just said he wouldn’t be surprised if Appel was in the majors in July!
7:16
Al Skorupa: Just no reason for Houston to do that.
7:17
Al Skorupa: So the Moran and Stewart talk was… just talk! Shocking! Haha
7:17
Comment From hiya
Another ridiculous question: Who is the Pujols hiding there in the later rounds?
7:18
Al Skorupa: Oof. Loaded question. There are always high ceiling guys hiding there. Sometimes the best players are the ones with a big flaw who overcome that flaw… like Michael Jordan and his shooting.
7:18
Comment From DANIEL
woah cubs
7:19
Al Skorupa: Yup. Interesting choice on Bryant by the Cubs. Makes sense, though. You’re getting MLB production here.
7:19
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Did we all just get screwed out of seeing Bryant smash bombs at Coors?
7:19
Al Skorupa: Haha… well, he still will in a Cubbies uniform!
7:21
Al Skorupa: Bryant, out of San Diego, emerged as the best college bat this year – and it’s a year that is lacking exciting college bats. BIG time power. AVG might be more of an issue – as they’re saying on TV he likes to get his arms extended. The homers will be there with an AVG that doesn’t kill you. Don’t love him at third and scouts didn’t either. Maybe a corner outfield spot.
7:21
Comment From Aussie Mariner
If you had to guess a potential “shock” pick in terms of perceived over/under draft in the top ten, who do you think it would be?
7:22
Al Skorupa: Been a lot of buzz about Reese McGuire cutting a deal last few weeks.
7:23
Al Skorupa: Well… that was basically who we expected to go 1-2-3 (though we didn’t know order). Kudos to the Astros, Cubs and Rox for not overthinking it. They got some very good players.
7:23
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Can Gray navigate the troubled pitching waters of Coors field?
7:24
Al Skorupa: It’s not as bad as it used to be to pitch there… and hey, 100 mph is a 100 mph anywhere.
7:24
Comment From Renan
Not watching on TV but how much time does each team have to make a pick?
7:24
Al Skorupa: Believe it’s 5 minutes.
7:25
Comment From Yan
Ubaldo threw 100 mph too ha!
7:25
Al Skorupa: Guy had some pretty good seasons, no? Gray doesn’t have that ugly wrist wrap like Ubaldo.
7:25
Comment From Lastick
No shockers yet, just the “best player” available.
7:26
Al Skorupa: Most teams do feel that with early picks you don’t necessarily need to hit a home run… you just can’t strike out.
7:26
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
What are the chances that the Oakland Athletics draft a HS with their 1st round pick?
7:27
Al Skorupa: Dated meme. That market inefficiency isn’t what it used to be. Prep picks more risky, but all picks are risky.
7:29
Al Skorupa: Stewart is the guy Minnesota has been mentioned with a lot. He’s filthy. Really high ceiling arm that scouts liked. Great athlete. Twins now have to buy him out of going to play QB at Texas A&M behind Johnny Football!
7:29
Al Skorupa: Cleveland seems a really obvious landing spot for Colin Moran.
7:31
Al Skorupa: Right now I would say Shipley, Frazier and Moran constitute the next three top talents. Maybe Meadows, too. Boston and Miami in great shape. KC supposedly wanted to go college arm… not sure one worth taking will be there..
7:31
Comment From Sean
Who’s got more potential: Kohl Stewart or Lucas Giolito?
7:32
Al Skorupa: Giolito. No question. Gio looked *special.* Stewart very high ceiling as well.
7:32
Comment From Lastick
This is fun, will you do this for international signing day too?
7:34
Al Skorupa: Haha… my expertise there is a little more limited and I’m not sure there audience is there for it. I did go watch the top July Dominican kids play in March. McKay Perez and Marcos Diplan were the standouts for me. I’ll get video of them together at some point soon
7:35
Al Skorupa: Great pick by Cleveland. I could see Frazier becoming a franchise player type if the bat comes along. Very high on him.
7:35
Al Skorupa: Has some Grady Sizemore vibe, too.
7:35
Steve Fiorindo:
7:36
Comment From Guest
Not that kind of Grady vibe, i hope.
7:36
Al Skorupa: No! Frazier plays hard and has speed and power but the hit tool needs development.
7:37
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Is Clint Frazier now a top 10 red head in baseball?
7:37
Al Skorupa: Sure. Why not.
7:37
Comment From Lastick
Any signing issues with Frazier?
7:38
Al Skorupa: I think he signs. The alternative is to head to college for 3 years and hope you get drafted in the top 4… and don’t get hurt. Lot of money to turn down.
7:39
Al Skorupa: That’s the top 5 players on my board gone. Miami has a nice choice. Moran and Shipley make sense. Miami hasn’t been afraid to go after a guy they love either.
7:40
Al Skorupa: I won’t be live chatting tomorrow but you can follow me on twitter @alskor https://twitter.com/alskor to see my thoughts.
7:41
Comment From Shark Mapiro
I’m glad the Indians went for the impact player instead of settling for the safe guy in Moran, especially considering we don’t have another pick until the 3rd
7:42
Al Skorupa: I bet they’re delighted, too. Moran a fine choice as well at this point – I just wouldn’t take him 1:1. Moran is going to hit and hit a lot. Great pitch recognition and approach (though sometimes gets pull happy and leaves himself open to soft and breaking). Hits everything.
7:43
Comment From Hon. Vincent "Buddy" Cianci
How far do you think Shipley could go if Miami takes Moran?
7:43
Al Skorupa: I doubt he goes far. He compares pretty favorably to Kyle Zimmer in a lot of ways. I wouldn’t be shocked if Boston scoops him up. Sox also liked Meadows.
7:44
Comment From Jaker
Any chance the Jays land McGuire?
7:44
Al Skorupa: Very possible – though he’s been linked to teams before that. Really strong catching class and I bet there’s a lot of division in war rooms over Ciuffo, McGuire or Denney (Denney fell behind with a cold April and May)
7:47
Al Skorupa: I also want to plug JD Sussman on twitter: https://twitter.com/JDSussman; and follow Steve Fiorindo for more great videos: https://twitter.com/SoCalSteve9. Some other great follows: Jeff Reese (pros, amateurs and videos): https://twitter.com/Ioffridus, Chris Blessing (Georgia, does mostly minor leagues with video): https://twitter.com/C_Blessing. Also Conor Dowley and Mike Schwartze in Seattle are excellent follows: https://twitter.com/c_dowley & https://twitter.com/Mike_Schwartze.
7:47
Comment From jesse
in all seriousness, Appel dosen’t See ML action untill Sept of next year right,
7:49
Al Skorupa: Can he get major league hitters out? Yeah… I thought he could have two years ago. He was up to 98 mph with life and the SL and CU both flashed plus. Consistency has been the bugagoo for Appel but he did a lot to answer those questions this college season and it paid off.

What’s the impetus for Houston to start his clock though? Will they contend next year? If so midseason makes a little sense… but not sold.

7:50
Al Skorupa: Well… Sox grab a big lefty prep arm in Trey Ball. I like it.
7:51
Al Skorupa: High ceiling arm. Great athlete. Good use of the high pick.
7:52
Al Skorupa: Ball has been in the low 90’s and also throws a curve and change. Lot of people mentioned him high this Spring.
7:52
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Overdraft?
7:52
Al Skorupa: I had Ball 10th on my board. Perfectly fine to take him here… especially if you have questions on the bat with Meadows (which many do). Sox don’t usually get a chance at kids like this.
7:55
Steve Fiorindo:
7:55
Al Skorupa: Ok… KC goes off the board there!
7:57
Al Skorupa: Not much to say yet. I hope they worked out a deal with him and plan to spend that later (Manaea?).
7:58
Al Skorupa: Summer ball for this year started tonight, by the way. The NECBL is in action. Cape starts next Wednesday.
7:59
Comment From Guest
High ceiling two way athlete. Not an overdraft but a rare Red Sox foray into upside.
7:59
Al Skorupa: I’m with you. The only gripe is that there was a higher ceiling prep left on the board in Meadows – but he has considerably more risks and many more doubters. Long levers and hit tool issues. Ball could be a good one.
8:00
Al Skorupa: There goes Meadows. Pittsburgh’s already very good farm system adds another high ceiling players.
8:02
Al Skorupa: Still kind of shocked Royals passed on Shipley. That’s the storyline to follow right now. Can’t wait to see what they do with their next pick.
8:03
Al Skorupa: Dozier is either going to look like a brilliant move or a gigantic mistake. The context isn’t at all clear yet!
8:05
Al Skorupa: Dozier’s pick has a slot bonus of $3.1m. If Dozier wants to sign for ~$1m that’s a lot of cash to be able spread around.
8:05
Al Skorupa: Toronto goes high ceiling with Bickford. Love the way those guys draft. They scout better than anyone else too.
8:05
Comment From jjdouglas
Royals Fans… You’ve Been Dayton’d
8:05
Al Skorupa: Maybe… maybe not!
8:06
Comment From Aussie Mariner
KLaw just said he had him on his board at 38. Significant overdraft? Has to be for budget reasons, aiming to throw cash at another guy doesn’t it?
8:06
Al Skorupa: HUGE overdraft. Has to be a deal. Just off my top 50.
8:06
Comment From Guest
Any way that the Mets go with Shipley?
8:07
Al Skorupa: They have to be tempted. I’d like that pick there. Send him to Brooklyn next month so I can see him pitch though!
8:08
Al Skorupa: I’ll give Dayton Moore & Co. credit… that’s not a safe pick you make to save your job. They went for it even under pressure.
8:08
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Is Shipley a senior, or will he get to a point where he’ll be effectively unsignable in terms of dollars?
8:09
Al Skorupa: He’s a junior. At some point, yes… but I think he goes before that point comes.
8:09
Al Skorupa: Even if he doesn’t, the Royals can now likely give anyone who drops a bonus in the range of a mid first round pick at pick 34.
8:09
Comment From Jaker
Wow. Really thought Jays would go with McGuire.
8:10
Al Skorupa: I thought there was a strong chance… but Bickford had as much late helium as anyone. Just had a dominant outing last time out. Throw away boards you’ve seen him on, because he ended up much higher on teams’ final boards.
8:11
Al Skorupa: Dom Smith… guy can really hit. BUT we’re talking a 1B only high school kid (most likely) and the power isn’t anything special at 1B.
8:13
Al Skorupa: Dom can play the outfield… but he’s a much better 1B. He’s a great defensive 1B. There are so many things that go into that… some guys are more suited to playing in the infield. Not just a question of athletic ability. Sometimes it’s temperament and putting a guy in the best situation to succeed more than trying to max out his defensive abilities.
8:13
Comment From Mike
Well won’t be seeing Smith in Brooklyn, Al.
8:15
Al Skorupa: Maybe not… but it’s possible. Nimmo went there but was a little older. Smith’s hitting ability is advanced. Might get a brief stop there at least. That Sussman character will get a better chance to see him than me though. And if not he lands in Newman territory next year (These are Fangraphs authors for the uninitiated!)
8:15
Comment From jesse
So The Royals can get a mid 1st round pick with a sandwich pick by take a 2nd rounder with the 8th pick? How does getting a 15 and 35 look better than getting a 8 and a 30?
8:16
Al Skorupa: I’m with you… but reserving judgment until we see what they do. If they worked out a deal with… Shipley, for example. I couldn’t really knock that.
8:17
Al Skorupa: So at the top of my board I have Shipley, Renfroe and the prep catchers right now (Ciuffo, McGuire)
8:18
Comment From Mike
Why not high on Smith’s power? Where do you see it grading out?
8:19
Al Skorupa: He’s going to hit homers, but nothing crazy. More of a line drive swing and he’s only 6’0″ tall… game is more hard contact to all fields than it is about swinging for the fences. Will be a good offensive player overall.
8:19
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
BJ Peterson… Discuss.
8:20
Al Skorupa: Real good college bat. I don’t want to say poor man’s Bryant, but Peterson can really hit. Another guy who I don’t think will have HUGE power numbers in the bigs, though. Short, line drive swing as well… but very good hitter and power won’t be a weakness or anything.
8:20
Comment From Lastick
Alright, now for some fun. Which top-10 draft sounds most like a suburban community: Austin Meadows. Which top-10 draft pick sounds most like a slovenian curse word: Phillip Bickford. And for those of you playing at home, which top-10 pick sounds most like the next slang word for getting lucky?
8:22
Al Skorupa: Peterson hit for HUGE power in college, it’s true… but that park is a launching pad.
8:23
Al Skorupa: The slot bonus for Peterson is $2.75m. That’s the range we’re at now. M’s still trying to solve run scoring problems.
8:24
Comment From Marcus A..
Mariners take DJ Peterson 12th… A 6′ 1b whose numbers were boosted by playing in New Mexico… Why do I even try to care? It only causes pain
8:24
Al Skorupa: Not a lot of obvious alternatives here – though I had him lower on my board. You get a major league bat here.
8:26
Al Skorupa: I would have preferred Renfroe to Peterson. Though I’m still mad at Renfroe for skipping the Cape on me! Good athlete. Good hitter. Above average outfielder and you get a safe college player that you like. Nice pick.
8:26
Comment From Kyle
What position do you see the Orioles targeting at 24 with the way the board has shaken up thus far?
8:26
Al Skorupa: There are a lot of arms left near the top of my board. High school and college.
8:26
Comment From Matt T.
So I live in RI, recommendations for the cape league on a week I’d bring my girlfriend to?
8:27
Al Skorupa: You mean a specific game or day? Or sites? Lot of great parks. Bourne is an easy trip from R.I. and great place to watch a game.
8:28
Comment From Guest
ETA on Renfroe?
8:29
Al Skorupa: Hmmm…. Late 2015 would be an accelerated clock but is possible. Late 2016 or 2017 more likely.
8:29
Comment From Tom
I get the point of pooling the money – but what’s the point of picking a mid-first round pick 34th when they were picking EIGHT and could get their first pick at 34 in all likelihood?
8:30
Al Skorupa: It’s a thinker. Maybe they didn’t love their options at 8 and cut a couple deals…
8:31
Al Skorupa: Pirates have scouted McGuire heavily all Spring. Loved him. All of the authors at Bullpen Banter that saw him thought the bat was underrated as well. He’s not big, but he has the tools be a good hitter for a catcher and a great defender.
8:31
Comment From Guest
ETA on Peterson?
8:31
Al Skorupa: Dude could move FAST. Next summer is possible if they really want to fast track him and need the help. In perfect world 2 1/2 – 3+ years better.
8:32
Comment From Mitch
Why does the draft love college juniors?
8:32
Al Skorupa: Players are eligible after their Senior year of high school and then not eligible again until they complete their third year of college. So scouts have been drooling over these guys for 3 years while watching draft eligible teammates.
8:33
Comment From Matt T.
I didn’t mean the easiest trip ,more so that I mean best environment to bring a girl who loves the beach and me who loves top prospects?
8:34
Al Skorupa: Chatham is a pain in the butt for scouts, but fun park and great setting. Orleans is gorgeous, too. Rosters still not settled – Team USA not completed yet, and a number of the best guys will be at College World Series… so Chatham or Orleans later in July?
8:34
Comment From Mitch
Does Mcguire stick at catcher? I read somewhere he doesn’t have the defense to stick at it…
8:35
Al Skorupa: Nah. Not sure where you saw that. May beraw but has excellent defensive tools. Austin Hedges is the comp many throw out.
8:35
Comment From Bobby Higginson
What would you do at 20 if you are the Tigers?
8:35
Al Skorupa: One of the catchers makes sense. Same as O’s… lots of arms there.
8:35
Al Skorupa: Got a couple messages it would be Shipley here but wasn’t sure enough to break it. Great fit and Arizona should be delighted.
8:36
Comment From nj0
Best baseball name that you expect to go in the first round?
8:36
Al Skorupa: Uh… maybe Notre Dame’s Eric Jagielo? (jahg-EYE-lo)
8:37
Comment From Aussie Mariner
DJ Peterson – overdraft if he can’t stick at third?
8:37
Al Skorupa: Eh… I think he’s probably an outfielder, personally. I had him lower, but I bet if you polled SD’s not many would have it as an overdraft.
8:38
Comment From Gila Monster
What part of RI are you from? I’m from Newport County or Portsmouth,RI…. More so,how did you end up in this state of ours?
8:38
Al Skorupa: I’m Ocean State born and bred. I’m from Cranston.
8:38
Comment From Alex
Might have missed it, but do you like Stewart?
8:39
Al Skorupa: Kohl? Love. Had a couple discussions with scouts last week and there was some thought then you could make an argument for him #1 (though no one said they’d actually take him there). That before the rumors today.
8:41
Comment From bucs_lose_again
didn’t they move up the deadline to sign draft picks recently?
8:42
Al Skorupa: Yes they did – It’s now 5 pm eastern on July 12th. Great that they did that, too. Stops players from hanging in limbo and gets them on short season rosters. Great for players and great for fans.
8:43
Al Skorupa: Crawford, as I said before the draft is a great fit for Philly.
8:44
Al Skorupa: He’s a shortstop whose bat is a developmental project… but you can teach him to hit. These are the kind of tools and athletic ability Philly looks for.
8:46
Comment From Guest
Would you pop Manaea here?
8:47
Al Skorupa: It’s sooo hard to say. I don’t get to have my team doctor look at him! Top player on my board is South Carolina prep catcher Nick Ciuffo.
8:47
Comment From Mitch
How can you tell when defense is raw versus just bad? (like one sign you nod your head and go “oh yeah.”)
8:48
Al Skorupa: Well… there’s definitely some overlap! We look at defensive tools. Footspeed. Athletic ability. Agility. Arm strength and accuracy. Technique. Really depends on what position. Does an error prone infielder have quick hands and does he get to the balls he should?
8:50
Al Skorupa: I uh… won’t be putting up a worst value poll for obvious reasons!
8:50
Al Skorupa: The White Sox love big, durable pitchers.
8:51
Al Skorupa: …and athletes!
8:51
Al Skorupa: Tim Anderson is the best Juco player this year. LOT of helium all Spring. He’s likely to stick at short. Toolsy and athletic.
8:52
Al Skorupa: Bat has not been tested against premium velocity or advanced competition.
8:52
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
A’s draft Manaea or that Juggelo fellow from ND?
8:52
Al Skorupa: Hmmm… my guess is Aaron Judge. Just a guess here though.
8:53
Al Skorupa: I’m of the opinion that JuCo guys are consistently underrated. Great job by ChiSox to trust their talent evaluators enough to pop Anderson here.
8:53
Comment From Mitch
St. Louis has done really well at getting college athletes who make an impact soon. Who you think they got?
8:54
Al Skorupa: They drafted Austin Wilson out of high school and offered him a ton of money. He fits the mold and has off the charts raw tools.
8:55
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Will there be another SS drafted in the 1st?
8:56
Al Skorupa: Unlikely. Oscar Mercado’s bat didn’t wow scouts this Spring. Can cheat and count Va Tech’s Chad Pinder as a SS? He played there a bit this season but will be a 3B as a pro. Both guys could get a look in the comp. round or 2nd.
8:56
Al Skorupa: I saw Mercado this Spring. Surefire SS, but bat is a project.
8:57
alskor:
8:57
Comment From Steff
Most mock drafts have Ryne Stanek as the best player left on board. what’s your guess, why he isn’t drafted yet?
8:57
Al Skorupa: Lot of teams think he’s a reliever. I lean that way as well… but nasty stuff and I’d give him a shot. Value at this point.
8:57
Comment From Yan
Chris Anderson to the Dodgers we’re hearing. Any comments on him?
8:59
Al Skorupa: Saw Anderson on the Cape. Big guy with a little short arm action. Four pitches (FB, SL, CB, CU) and commanded them all well. 89-93 (94). I liked him… didn’t see him as a clear 1st rounder, but reports were he flashed better velos and stuff with smoothed out mechanics this Spring.
8:59
alskor:
8:59
Al Skorupa: Dodgers usually do damn well with guys like this.
9:00
Comment From Mitch
People (in poll) seem to feel like Meadows to Pitt for failing to sign Appel is at least something of value.
9:00
Al Skorupa: Hey, me too. That’s why I put it as an option!
9:03
Comment From Mitch
Do you have any worries about any of the players and the development system they are in? (i.e. will Meadows survive the military training?)
9:03
Al Skorupa: Haha… think that training got axed, right? Nothing really stands out as bad fit so far.
9:06
Al Skorupa: I have some reservations about Gonzalez. To be fair, I only saw him hit live (and he can hit too!)… but I’d say the most likely outcome is 4 starter. Cards usually do well developing arms though. Strange fit, though.
9:06
Comment From Binyamin
What would happen to Mark Appel if he and the Astros fail to complete negotiations? Does he need to wait another year?
9:07
Al Skorupa: Sit out for a year (think Hochever in independent ball). BUT the signing deadline doesn’t apply to Seniors… so they have some time.
9:07
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Marco did not pitch well in his last game– did that make his draft stock fall?
9:07
Al Skorupa: Eh… think teams knew what they were looking at by then. Lot of teams already turned in final reports.
9:08
Comment From Peter
With Galvis, Hernandez, Quinn, Asche, and Franco as young infielders/infield prospects, why do the Phillies take a shortstop with the first pick?
9:08
Al Skorupa: Crawford fit their M.O. best. Many of those guy have less shot to stay at position than Crawford, too.
9:08
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Other than Appel, does Marco have the most MLB ready change up?
9:09
Al Skorupa: I could buy that. Too busy to make a study of it right now…
9:09
Comment From Mitch
Are Cards bundling, you think?
9:10
Al Skorupa: I don’t think Gonzalez would be that cheap. Might save a little, but doubt its anything substantial. I think they just like him more than others. Same thing with Ramsey last year.
9:10
Comment From Koz
What do you think the Rangers should do at 23? What do you think they actually do?
9:11
Al Skorupa: I like Phil Ervin. Athlete with bat speed? That’s a Rangers style prospect right there.
9:11
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Is there a chance that Kaminsky could go to the O’s?
9:11
Al Skorupa: Very much so, I’d say.
9:11
Comment From Bobby Higginson
Thoughts on Crawford?
9:14
Al Skorupa: I saw Crawford pitch this year down in Gainesville in the SEC opening series against Kentucky. I liked him, but he wasn’t the guy he had been advertised to be. 92-93 consistently and held it late. Two major league secondaries that were a bit inconsistent. Worked the bottom of the zone but it was more control than command with the fastball and he missed spots. Solid pick and if the velo ticks back up to where it was before and SL gets bite back it could be a steal. He was a candidate to go top 10 early in the year.
9:14
Al Skorupa: Rays have been hard on Ciuffo all year. No surprise there. Great fit. Love Ciuffo’s game.
9:15
Steve Fiorindo:
9:16
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Outside of the top 5 drafted thus far, which player has the best shot of being a consensus top 25 prospect by 2015? If you’re feeling saucy make it the top 10.
9:17
Al Skorupa: Manaea and Wilson are the two obvious guys who haven’t been taken. Meadows is an easy answer, too.
9:21
Comment From Tom
Was Clarkin expected to drop this far? Where do you think he will go?
9:21
Al Skorupa: I didn’t have Clarkin in the 1st round on my board. Think there was some divergence of opinions on him.
9:21
Comment From Spanky Anderson
It feels like the Tiger’s have drafted another reliever in the first round. That organization has no vision. 2008 still haunts me.
9:22
Al Skorupa: Eh… he doesn’t have the cleanest mechanics, but he’s a quality arm. It’s not hard to see the appeal.
9:22
Al Skorupa: I had Harvey 17th on my board. Athletic prep arm with projection. Typical high school first rounder skill set. FB, +CB, CU
9:25
Al Skorupa: Top players left on my board: Jon Denney, Phil Ervin, Ryne Stanek, Austin Wilson, Sean Manaea, Aaron Judge
9:25
Comment From Rob
Why has Stanek free-fallen? Isn’t he a step above Crawford?
9:26
Al Skorupa: One would think. This is right around where I had him on my board and had Crawford a bit farther down.
9:26
Comment From Mitch
So did you have Harvey or Shipley higher?
9:26
Al Skorupa: Shipley was 6th, Harvey 17th.
9:27
Al Skorupa: Alex Gonzalez played for Y-D Red Sox last summer, too. Son of Cuban immigrants. College righty who helped his stock with a strong Spring. Good cut slider.
9:27
Comment From dude
How much consideration do teams take when it comes to mechanics? Is that a reason for the slip of some players? Or are talent evaluations just that different in opinion?
9:29
Al Skorupa: Big time consideration. SDs put a lot of stock in the opinion of the scouts and cross checkers they trust on pitching. Many teams write a guy off as a reliever and move him way down the board. Others don’t hesitate to jump into the questionable area of projecting injuries. Mostly, mechanics and delivery considered in terms of effect on command, ability to repeat, etc…
9:31
Al Skorupa: Well, that’s a bit of surprise. A’s nab McKinney – bat first Texas high school OF. Yankees on him heavy as well.
9:31
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
A’s dropped the ball?
9:32
Al Skorupa: I like the pick. Lot of similar players available right now. Scouts have a lot of confidence in McKinney’s bat. Should hit for power and average.
9:32
Comment From dude
Where do you expect the yanks to go with their 3 picks? Thanks for the responses.
9:33
Al Skorupa: Well, it’s not news but they have been tied to local product Kaminsky and Notre Dame 3B Jagielo all Spring. Manaea makes some sense, as do the college outfielders (Ervin, Wilson, Judge). They can go a lot of different ways, though. Kaminsky is a big Yankees fan I believe.
9:33
Comment From Mitch
Who is Manaea’s upside comp?
9:35
Al Skorupa: He’s a weird guy… pretty unique. Big, athletic southpaw. FB sneaky low 90’s. Split CU plus plus pitch that generates tremendous amount of swings and misses. SL gets sweepy but has potential to be an above average pitch. He’s a bit raw for a college guy and has some problems repeating his delivery and timing. Coming from off the beaten path cold weather program at ISU he has some more room for growth than most College draftees. Flashed higher velos. Great makeup. Nice kid.
9:38
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Well there we go the Giants have made the worst pick thus far… Discuss.
9:38
Al Skorupa: That’s a little off the map with Arroyo, but the Giants always seem to do that… and always seem to get good players. They value different things than other teams. Different strokes for different folks and what they do works.
9:39
Comment From Tripp
Worse pick: Dozier at 8 or Arroyo at 25?
9:40
Al Skorupa: The draft slot for the Giants’s 25th pick is $1.86m. KC’s 8th pick is $3.13m
9:44
Al Skorupa: Jagielo made a great impression upon scout while playing for Harwich last summer. Lot of pop in that bat. The defense is fringe average in my book, but talked to scouts who thought I was being harsh. Good character guy who can hit. Nice pick.
9:45
Jeff Reese:
9:45
Al Skorupa: That’s video from Bullpen Banter author Jeff Reese (@Ioffridus on twitter – https://twitter.com/Ioffridus )
9:45
Comment From dude
Could Jagielo move to 1b in the future?
9:47
Al Skorupa: At the beginning of the Cape I thought that’s where he belonged. The arm is strong, but nothing special for 3B. It can play there but isn’t standout. He’s a little stiff in the field… not the most athletic actions, but solid first step quickness. I warmed on his glove, but I still don’t love him there.
9:48
Al Skorupa: Reds got a great one with Ervin. Love that kid. Cocky little player with tremendous bat speed. Quick hands. Surprising pop and a very good runner. Lit up the Cape early last Summer.
9:49
Al Skorupa: Ervin has some problems with soft and spinning, but he can handle premium velocity. Saw pitcher try to bust him on the hands with velo. He fouled it off. Pitcher came right at his shoulder even farther in next pitch – he started earlier and whipped the bat head at it – home run. He’s a ballplayer.
9:49
alskor:
9:50
Comment From Mitch
You keep pointing to character–how much do you value that in your assessment?
9:51
Al Skorupa: I’m probably a little sloppy with that. When I say “character” I don’t mean he gives to charity. I mean work ethic, playing the game hard and the right way. Good teammate. I do value those things highly. They don’t trump talent, but it’s important – especially moreso when we talk about prospects. Whether they make it or not has a lot to do with this stuff.
9:52
Al Skorupa: Wow! Cards take Two pitchability lefties in Gonzalez AND Kaminsky!
9:52
alskor:
9:53
Al Skorupa: Rob is as mature a high school pitcher as you’ll ever see.
9:53
Comment From Tripp
With the first round done, what are your top 3 best values?
9:54
Al Skorupa: Let’s say quickly Shipley, Ciuffo, Ervin.
9:54
Comment From Mike Schwartze
Just jumped in, not sure it has been addressed but where would you guess Manea and Stanek go?
9:55
Al Skorupa: Man… landing spots for Stanek are getting harder and harder to find. I think you have to look at that KC spot for both. Yanks fit, too.
9:56
Comment From 2ndHS
Guesses on who the Brewers take? Still to far down the line to guess?
9:56
Al Skorupa: Far away… I’ll take a shot in the dark and say Bobby Wahl.
9:57
Comment From Mitch
Wow…reading about Kaminsky–that’s a hell of a way to get back value on Kyle Lohse.
9:58
Al Skorupa: Scout on Kaminsky: “If he was 6’2 he’d be a top 10 pick.”
9:58
Al Skorupa: Well, there goes Stanek! Another value for the Rays. Already this is my favorite Rays draft in years. They’re having a very good day.
9:59
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
Stanek says he models himself pitching after Lincecum– does that statement speak to his drop?
10:01
Al Skorupa: I don’t really see what he’s talking about – not a lot of obvious similarities. Doesn’t have Texas Baseball Ranch delivery, really.
10:01
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Is there a point in the draft where you start drafting for need over BPA?
10:02
Al Skorupa: Yes… but very minor consideration at this point. When we get to middle rounds you start worrying about how your rosters are going to fill out. Sometimes teams take a guy later and tell him to go school because they don’t have a spot for him to play.
10:02
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
That was a joke, I need to be more careful with what I post.
10:02
Al Skorupa: Haha… got me. Was going to say! (Lincecum – Stanek)
10:03
Comment From Tripp
It shouldn’t be any surprise the Rays are having a great draft.
10:03
Al Skorupa: They’ve gone cheaper/safe a lot in recent years, especially early rounds.
10:03
Comment From Tripp
Because Harvey doesn’t have any college commitments, do you see the O’s signing him for significantly under the $1,947,600 slot?
10:06
Al Skorupa: This isn’t the big deal you’d think. Teams know this about a lot of guys – most don’t say it on national TV though. Scout gave me example the other day that Red Sox prospect Henry Owen’s dad was telling everyone that Spring that he wasn’t going to school. I’ve talked to parents who told me flat out their child wanted to sign, too. They still have a number and you can only squeeze so much. If you weren’t willing to pay them somewhere near slot you shouldn’t have taken them. Kid can always go to school – or more likely JuCo and back in the next year.
10:06
Comment From Hitler But Sadder
So including the supplementals we have just had the 4th SS drafted. DeMeritte has a funky hitch in his swing, but everything I have seen from him is that he is an incredible athlete.
10:08
Al Skorupa: DeMerrite is a guy you hear a wide array of different opinions about. It’s a guy I have a hard time making a call on since I haven’t seen him live.
10:08
Steve Fiorindo:
10:10
Comment From dude
Do the yanks grab manaea here?
10:10
Al Skorupa: If I had to guess I’d say Manaea and Denney. If its not Manaea here it starts getting real dicey with him.
10:11
Comment From dude
What about clarkin?
10:12
Al Skorupa: Fits someplace in this range you’d think. Wonder what the last minute price tag talk was.
10:13
Al Skorupa: Yanks went prep pitcher last year with Ty Hensley
10:13
alskor:
10:14
Al Skorupa: Aaron Judge is a BIG kid… with big holes in his swing. Loooong arms and a long swing, but good runner, crazy athlete for his size. Large hands. Very strong arm. Plus power easily – and doesn’t need to square up the ball to hit a HR.
10:15
Al Skorupa: Judge played CF last summer… just made me shake my head seeing a 6’7″ kid playing in center between two 6 footers… but he acquitted himself well there.
10:16
Al Skorupa: If Judge’s hit tool comes along he could be a monster. If it doesn’t he can still be a very good player and productive regular.
10:16
Comment From 2ndHS
Sorry if this has been asked, but what is it about Manaea’s hip injury that is scaring people off so much. Is it something that could mess him up that much or do people just not want to draft an injured player regardless the injury?
10:18
Al Skorupa: Well… it made it harder to evaluate him at a time when teams had to make the big calls.He was also a guy with a shorter track record of success so that dinged him. Hip injuries are always scary for pitchers and the report was he had some shoulder soreness when he was scratched from his last start in the conference tourney. Again, impossible for me to nail it down without recent medicals.
10:19
Al Skorupa: Judge won’t be a center fielder as a pro (at least not for long). He fits excellently in RF. Very good arm.
10:21
Comment From Evan
So does Denney make it to CIN at 38, allowing them to get both the “win now” guy they need and the long view talent that cements the Stephenson/Winker wave, Al? And how glad are you that I pushed for Demeritte on the BB Top 50 now?
10:22
Al Skorupa: Haha! Evan Rentschler writes with me at Bullpen Banter. I think the Reds have a nice wave of talent coming up. System looks strong. Great call on Demeritte – I left him off mine!
10:22
Comment From dude
Thoughts on the Yankees 3 draft picks? Would you have gone a different route with any of the picks?
10:23
Al Skorupa: Really strong draft so far. Like all the picks. Could quibble some and my picks might be different but no reaches and good values.
10:24
Comment From Dave
What are the biggest concerns with the Pirates picks besides how young they are?
10:25
Al Skorupa: Meadows is a development job but has great tools. Need to go slow with the bat. I don’t really have any reservations about McGuire.
10:26
Comment From Publiche or Parrish
Why do you think the A’s passed on Jagielo? I thought that pick could have made sense for them.
10:27
Al Skorupa: I don’t mind the direction they went. Either pick would have made sense. Don’t see Jagielo as any sort of great fit there…
10:27
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Manaea still signable? Only for KC now with the chunk they’ll save after their #8 overdraft?
10:28
Al Skorupa: Depends. How hurt is he and how scared is he about losing money? He can still get paid a decent chunk. We’re in the $1.5m range. If you wanted to get to $2m you could work something out with him and punt a couple other early round picks on senior signs.
10:33
Comment From bucs_lose_again
MLB.com is showing Ryne Stanek with the Pirates logo beside his name…clearly a “typo” right? Did Selig changes some rules over the past 45 minutes?
10:34
Al Skorupa: Haha… Last second trade? Did Mike Tice not get the Rays pick in on time???
10:35
Al Skorupa: Sounds like the Royals are taking Sean Manaea
10:37
Al Skorupa: There it is – Royals pop Manaea!
10:37
alskor:
10:39
Al Skorupa: Discussed above, but wanted to add that Manaea started off games up to 96 but by the 2nd inning was down to 91-93. The feeling is that with more consistency the extra ticks will come.
10:39
Comment From 2ndHS
Think Hunter Green or Jacob Brentz are realistic to fall to 54th pick?
10:39
Al Skorupa: Very possible. Draft could go a lot of ways here.
10:40
Al Skorupa: Krook is a projectable prep lefty whose mechanics need a lot of smoothing out.
10:40
Comment From Aussie Mariner
That one will be interesting to follow. I know it’s far away, but any guesses as to who the M’s might take in the second round at 49?
10:40
Al Skorupa: Hmmm… how about Mater Dei HS’s Ryan McMahon? Or local product Dustin Driver?
10:41
Comment From BBQ Chkn Pizza
Over/under 10 years until the MLB Draft attempts to ape the pyrotechnics of the NFL Draft
10:41
Al Skorupa: The sooner the better IMHO.
10:41
alskor:
10:42
Al Skorupa: Blair was one of the guys with early buzz on the Cape. Another Y-D pitcher. A Nevada native, Blair went to Marshall, grew a few inches and filled in. Started pumping low 90’s. Strong 3/4 pitch mix and advanced command, control and pitchability.
10:42
Comment From bucs_lose_again
In your opinion, are there signability concerns with either Meadows or McGuire?
10:43
Al Skorupa: Unlikely. When you get drafted that high the money is there if you want it. Not too many guys turn down those amounts.
10:44
Al Skorupa: BPA: Jon Denney, Austin Wilson, Devin Williams, Kyle Serrano (unsignable?), Connor Jones
10:45
Comment From Tom
So #8 pick and #34 pick for Manaea and Dozier…. seems like all they did was hedge their bets if they can’t sign Manaea but they would have gotten a better comp pick next year if the picked Manaea at 8 if he didn’t sign. I don’t get it.
10:45
Al Skorupa: It worked out being Manaea, but they may have had multiple targets in mind.
10:45
Comment From BBQ Chkn Pizza
To my knowledge, there is nothing in MLB like a Mel Kiper or an NFL Combine. Honestly, a MLB Combine would draw tons of fans. Who can throw the furthest? Who has amazing BPs? Who gets around the bases the fastest? Who can load up the biggest wad of chaw?
10:46
Al Skorupa: True, but there is the Cape Cod League, College World Series, Perfect Game All America Game, Under Armor All America Game and Area Code Games.
10:46
Comment From Ryan
Is it really necessary to have this draft last until almost midnight? This is kind of ridiculous no?
10:47
Al Skorupa: You’re telling me – I’ve been chatting since 6:30!
10:47
Comment From Ryan
Which of the top draft picks will be in top 100 lists at the end of the season (assuming they sign)?
10:48
Al Skorupa: Locks: Gray, Appel, Bryant, Frazier, K. Stewart
Probably: Moran, Shipley, Meadows, Ball

Bunch of other guys in contention. Performances and development of themselves and others over second half of year will determine.

10:49
Comment From Tripp
Thoughts on Josh Hart?
10:49
Al Skorupa: Haven’t seen him live but heard positive reviews.
10:50
alskor:
10:50
Steve Fiorindo:
10:50
Al Skorupa: Falling behind! Lorenzen – never hit in my viewings, but fantastic athlete and burner who can play centerfield. Quick bat but weak approach and I don’t have a lot of confidence in the hit tool. Upper 90s in relief.
10:51
Al Skorupa: Saw Knebel with Team USA as a sophomore. Wasn’t wowed, but solid stuff.
10:52
Comment From bucs_lose_again
Nine guys from this draft could invade the top 100? Wouldn’t the average normally be closer to six or seven? Granted, I know the definition of the word “probably”
10:52
Al Skorupa: I’m usually pretty aggressive placing draftees.
10:52
Comment From Ryan
Who are the prep players who have signability issues?
10:53
Al Skorupa: Drafted or still on the board? Denney and Serrano
10:53
Comment From bucs_lose_again
Is this year’s draft class stronger than last, in your opinion?
10:54
Al Skorupa: I preferred last year’s. A little more solid depth here though. Lack of college bats and top notch prep arms this year.
10:55
Comment From Signability of the Times
What team has gotten the most production and/or trade value out of their draft picks over the last 10 years?
10:56
Al Skorupa: Probably Boston? They’ve had some good ones. Lot of Red Sox backup catchers around the league. Smaller time frame might be Cards? Rays?
10:56
Comment From Mike Curtis
On the strength of draft question. Do you into the McDaniel theory that after the top 15-20 guys all drafts are the same in terms of depth (give or take)?
10:57
Al Skorupa: Haven’t read it, but makes sense on it’s face. Of course, don’t assume that’s also the top 15-20 *picks* – draft not that efficient.
10:58
alskor:
10:59
Al Skorupa: Trevor Williams low 90’s and kept ball down. Durable build. Showed well when I saw him. CB, SL and CU all effective pitches. Doesn’t miss a lot of bats, but solid 4-5 and maybe a 3 ceiling.
11:01
Al Skorupa: Teddy Stankiewicz was a 2nd rounder of the Mets that I was surprised they didn’t get done. Solid pick by Boston. One of the better prep arms from last year.
11:02
Comment From Darrelle Revis & Butthead
Where would Puig have been taken in this draft were he an American college or high school student?
11:03
Al Skorupa: Interesting question. Top 5 I’d say.
11:03
Comment From Guest
Trevor Williams got pounded the night the FanGraphs crew went to see him against OSU in March. Obviously he will be terrible. Just sayin’.
11:04
Al Skorupa: Last time I saw him was for Orleans last summer and he looked good. Mike Schwartze from BB and Prospect Insider saw him recently and didn’t have a real positive report. Stuff is pretty solid.
11:04
Comment From Men w/o Hats
You can dance if you want to
11:04
Al Skorupa: This is true.
11:07
Comment From Jaker
Good pick for Jays?
11:08
Al Skorupa: I like it. Helium arm. Big lefties with arm strength are hard to come by
11:09
Al Skorupa: There goes Austin Wilson. Steal for Seattle at this point. In the argument for top tools in this draft. Seriously. Huge, athletic kid. Plus runner. Plus arm.
11:09
alskor:
11:11
Al Skorupa: Wilson’s approach to the game – not just at the plate – is inconsistent. He would work himself into favorable counts and then swing at garbage. Sometimes he would swing at awful first pitch balls. He’s a total enigma for many scouts and there’s some sentiment he’s too soft.
11:12
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Oh no, the Stanford Swing! Any signability concerns?
11:14
Al Skorupa: At this point? Could be a guy who goes back I’d think. Tough.

Definitely has some Stanford swing issues. Flat, oppo stroke – but still kills the ball. When (if?) he learns to identify pitches to drive, clear his hips and pull the ball it’s going to go a mile. Seemed to be aware of the issue, too. One AB he’d be flat Stanford swing. The next it would be like he was trying to introduce loopiness to his swing to counter that.

11:14
Comment From Ryan
Scale of 1-10: Grade the pirates draft
11:14
Al Skorupa: Too early! So far B+
11:15
Comment From Mike Curtis
Al, anything on Andrew Church?
11:15
Comment From Priya
Thoughts on Church for the Mets? Kid has a weird backstory.
11:16
Al Skorupa: Not a guy I’ve seen. You could ask Steve Fiorindo. Not sure if he saw him but that’s his area of expertise (Cal preps). https://twitter.com/SoCalSteve9 Like what I heard and read. Scout mentioned he liked him when we were talking about Cal kids, but only that – generically a guy he liked without detail and I didn’t follow up.
11:17
Al Skorupa: Andrew Knapp out of Cal. was the best catching prospect on the Cape last year. Solid defender and potent bat.
11:17
alskor:
11:18
Comment From JCougar
The Tigers’ pick of Knebel seems perplexing at best. Any idea of what they are thinking? Couldn’t they have gotten him in the third round if they really liked him that much?
11:18
Al Skorupa: I didn’t hate the pick. Solid value there. He’s got arm strength and two MLB pitches. Probably a reliever… but a late innings guy
11:20
Al Skorupa: Devin Williams is a great pick there. Compares favorably to prep arms taken higher.
11:20
Al Skorupa: I tried like hell to see Tyler Danish when I was in Florida but it was either him or Oscar Mercado. I thought Mercado would go higher! Oh well…
11:21
Al Skorupa: Danish looked like he would go higher earlier in the Spring. Gators commit with a slingy delivery.
11:22
Al Skorupa: The slot for the White Sox pick of Danish is right around a million dollars even.
11:22
Comment From Mike
Gotta think Denney floated a huge number at this point, right?
11:22
Al Skorupa: Right. Asssume that ship has sailed.
11:22
Al Skorupa: I won’t be live chatting tomorrow but you can follow me on twitter @alskor https://twitter.com/alskor to see my thoughts.
11:23
Al Skorupa: I also want to again plug JD Sussman on twitter: https://twitter.com/JDSussman; and follow Steve Fiorindo for more great videos: https://twitter.com/SoCalSteve9. Some other great follows: Jeff Reese (pros, amateurs and videos): https://twitter.com/Ioffridus, Chris Blessing (Georgia, does mostly minor leagues with video): https://twitter.com/C_Blessing. Also Conor Dowley and Mike Schwartze in Seattle are excellent follows: https://twitter.com/c_dowley & https://twitter.com/Mike_Schwartze.
11:23
Al Skorupa: Tommy Lasorda. The best.
11:23
Al Skorupa: Love the All Star Game in Seattle when that bat hit Tommy in the belly and sent him sprawling!
11:24
Al Skorupa: Tom Windle – one of the better lefties on the Cape. Lively FB and solid CU. Shallow cut slider he can throw for strikes. Long legs and some timing issues in his mechanics… I think best fit is the pen.
11:24
alskor:
11:24
Steve Fiorindo:
11:25
Comment From Mike
Any way you can explain Reynolds obsession with players from up north? Or anything he says at all?
11:25
Al Skorupa: Nope!
11:25
alskor:
11:25
Al Skorupa: Mercado is a sure fire SS but bat and feel for hitting needs work.
11:26
Al Skorupa: He has some bat speed and decent swing mechanics but no real feel for hitting. Project.
11:27
Al Skorupa: Ziomek – another college pitcher who projects in relief for Detroit.
11:27
Al Skorupa: Ziomek knows what he’s doing and solid stuff but reliever qualities in his delivery
11:28
Comment From Aussie Mariner
Detroit – cornering the market on early round relievers?
11:29
Al Skorupa: Pretty much. Getting some nice arms and they may have different plans for them, though. I think Crawford will start.
11:31
Al Skorupa: Tampa Bay continues to load up on up the middle talent. Always seem to take shortstops early in recent years.
11:32
Steve Fiorindo:
11:33
Al Skorupa: Rangers love their athletic pitchers.
11:35
Al Skorupa: Dillon Overton a solid arm. To show how much can change in a few months – Overton was the guy to see on Oklahoma entering the Spring. Jon Gray’s stock flew up to 3rd in the draft while Overton dropped out of the 1st round altogther!
11:36
Steve Fiorindo:
11:36
Al Skorupa: 4 picks left on the day: ATL, NYY, CIN and WAS
11:39
Al Skorupa: Main talking points:

a) Top 3 went in order.
b) The Royals taking Dozier… and then Manaea
c) Giants go off the board a bit
d) Tigers take college arms
e) Jon Denney, Kyle Serrano, Connor Jones all undrafted and may go to school

11:39
Comment From 2ndHS
More than 4. Comp B round too.
11:39
Al Skorupa: Right!
11:39
Comment From 2ndHS
Ryder Jones leading the pack for best baseball name drafted.
11:39
Al Skorupa: Sure is!
11:40
Comment From JCougar
Only because Kodiak Quick was not drafted this year…
11:41
Al Skorupa: California high school really showing up Florida and Texas this year!
11:42
Al Skorupa: As John Hart is discussing, right-handed power is always something teams covet. Somehow it always seems to be more of a scarce commodity than you’d imagine.
11:43
Al Skorupa: Johansen an interesting power arm. More of a project than you’d like to see in a college pitcher.
11:43
Al Skorupa: Up in the Comp round we have SD, OAK, MIA, COL and MIL
11:45
Al Skorupa: So it’s been an exciting day so far. Really looking forward to Day 2 and seeing some local guys (to me) get taken.
11:46
Al Skorupa: Not a lot of controversy in this draft so far. It was wide open in many ways so hard to call many things stretches…
11:48
Al Skorupa: BPA: Jon Denney, Kyle Serrano, Garrett Williams, Bobby Wahl, Andrew Mitchell, Jacob Brentz
11:49
Al Skorupa: Balog comes out of San Francisco – which saw Kyle Zimmer drafted last year. Balog another fresh arm with some promise
11:51
Al Skorupa: Pinder was a guy I saw on the Cape who didn’t really impress me or others I talked to that much at first glance. He went home fairly early in the season with an injury and then I began reading some rave reviews. I saw him again this Spring and he still didn’t wow me. He had lost weight and gotten more slender this year. Good athlete, good defender at 3B (and didnt embarass himself at SS). Some pop in the bat but feel for hitting a bit raw and neither I nor sources saw him square a whole lot of balls up. Others I talked to liked him considerably more.
11:51
Al Skorupa: A’s have some great 3B depth all of a sudden. Pinder, Daniel Robertson…
11:51
Comment From mcf
Anyone on your list of BPA likely to be signable?
11:52
Al Skorupa: Brentz out of the preps maybe. Wahl and Mitchell will sign.
11:52
Al Skorupa: Colby Suggs was absolutely filthy in relief. He was 94-96 for me and touched higher. Sturdy, stout build who could move fast and pitch late innings
11:52
Al Skorupa: Finished product who basically WYSIWYG
11:53
Al Skorupa: Suggs one of the best relief arms in this draft and I like the pick a lot. Milwaukee – with not much in the way of early picks – still did alright.
11:53
Comment From 2ndHS
Got any info on Tucker Neuhaus? Never heard of him.
11:55
Al Skorupa: Neuhaus got some major helium in March after coming back from injury. Tampa area HS SS/3B. Well rounded game (defense and bat) and still growing into his tools.
11:55
Al Skorupa: Thanks for chatting with me folks! Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!

/collapses from exhaustion


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