Team Joy Squad 2011: #15 – #11


#15 – Juan Francisco, 3B-ish, Cincinnati

Francisco was on last year’s iteration of this Team, and has really only become more like Juan Francisco in the meantime, slashing .286/.325/.565 (.332 BABIP) in 329 Triple-A plate appearances last season and posting a 4.9 BB% against a 26.3 K%. It’s pretty clear that Francisco’s hold over the strike zone is tenuous, but his power is real and his swing exudes unbridled enthusiasm for swinging. (I’ll direct your attention to all of these videos, but especially this one.) Bill James has Francisco projected at .280/.313/.513. Brian Cartwright’s OLIVER has him at .273/.308/.513. I’d be surprised if Francisco batted as high as .270 in the majors, but I wouldn’t be surprised — at all — by an ISO north of .230.

#14 – Tim Collins, LHP, Kansas City

Tim Collins is, essentially, a walking Feel Good Story. He’s just 5-foot-7 and 155 pounds, went undrafted out of Worcester (Mass.) Techinical High School, is only entering his age-21 season, and yet all he does is strike people out. Regard: in 223.0 minor league innings, the lefty Collins has recorded 329 strikeouts, or 13.3 per nine. Nor is it as though he’s merely feasting off younger competition: Collins made it to Triple-A last season as a 20-year-old. Despite a circuitous path (he went from Toronto to Atlanta in the Yunel Escobar trade and then to Kansas City, along with others, for Rick Ankiel and Kyle Farnsworth), Collins has succeeded at every level, including 20.1 Triple-A innings last season that saw him record 21 K and 8 BB. Apparently, a 12-to-6 curveball is his great weapon.

#13 – Craig Kimbrel, RHP, Atlanta

Mostly, I echo the sentiments expressed by Jackie Moore in his piece on Kimbrel from back in January — in particular, his (i.e. Jackie’s) point concerning “the mystery of [Kimbrel's] inexperience.” To said piece, I will add only this one point, as follows:

#12 – Aroldis Chapman, LHP, Cincinnati

My instinct with Chapman is not to explain why he’s a member of the Squad, but why he’s only twelfth on the list. Because, based on watchability-cum-performance, Chapman is one of the best players in all of baseball. But as I noted in the introduction to this brief series while making reference to Joe Posnanski’s Movie Expectation Formula, one consideration for inclusion on this list is the possibility of a player producing far above expectations. While Colby Lewis came out of relative obscurity to post a 4.4 WAR season, the baseball-watching public’s expectations of Chapman are already considerably high. So that’s one thing. Another, somewhat related thing, is that Chapman has the potential to evolve into a totally heartbreaking work. There’s little precedent for humans throwing the ball 105 mph. There’s even less precedent for a pitcher who does that and who has also left his family, girlfriend, and child behind in a country from which he’s defected. One imagines that any on-field difficulties that Chapman encounters could be exacerbated by the less-than-ideal circumstances surrounding his presence in the US.

#11 – Brian Cavazos-Galvez, OF, Los Angeles (NL)

Like a couple other players so far on this list (Collins, Eric Farris), Cavazos-Galvez was one of the players that appeared on my non-prospect list in the Second Opinion. It was there that I wrote about Cavazos-Glavez,

There are some pretty clear strikes against [him]. First, there’s the fact that he was a 23-year-old in the [low Class A] Midwest League. Second is the fact that he’s taken a total of just 22 walks in 791 minor league PAs. The good news is that he’s toolsy and, unlike some other players who’re described like that, appears to have pretty sweet contact skills. He struck out just once in 30 Dominican Winter League at-bats, and projects to have both power and speed at the Major League level if and when he arrives.

The encouraging thing about Cavazos-Galvez’ age is that it’s not due to him having failed at any level, but rather to the fact that he’s an older college draftee (12th round in 2009) who just hasn’t been promoted aggressively. And, again, those contact rates coupled with that athleticism present an exciting package.

Team Joy Squad 2011 (w/ Picks #11 – #25):

C	Chris Iannetta, C, COL
1B	Gaby Sanchez, 1B, FLA
LF	Brian Cavazos-Galvez, OF, LAD
DH 	Juan Francisco, "3B", CIN
B	Eric Farris, UTIF, MIL
B	Brent Morel, UTIF, CHA
B	Mitch Moreland, 1B, TEX
B 	Cameron Maybin, OF, SD
B 	Robinson Chirinos, C, TB

P	Aroldis Chapman, LHP, CIN
P	Craig Kimbrel, RHP, ATL
P	Tim Collins, LHP, KC
P	Manny Parra, LHP, MIL
P	Felipe Paulino, RHP, COL
P	Jordan Zimmermann, WAS

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Carson Cistulli occasionally publishes spirited ejaculations at The New Enthusiast.

17 Responses to “Team Joy Squad 2011: #15 – #11”

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  1. verd14 says:

    the kimbrel piece just made me laugh out loud

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    • Nik says:

      I think the BB/9 columns should have been included as well

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    • sparbz says:

      I LOL’d at the Kimbrel. The OMG table showed up on my RSS and that was that for me.

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    • MikeS says:

      I don’t see why it’s so impressive. In 2008 in high A ball he struggled to reach 7 K/9 in over 3 innings of work. Maybe that’s his true talent level?

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      • verd14 says:

        don’t be mad that it didn’t make you chuuckle

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      • CircleChange11 says:

        If this is an attempt at sarcasm, it’s brilliant …

        Seriously …
        [1] “In 2008″
        [2] “in high A ball”
        [3] “in over 3 innings of work”
        [4] Maybe that’s his true talent level?

        That’s brilliant.

        If this is a serious question at a statistical analysis website, it’s not funny at all.

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  2. Mike D says:

    This kind of research is very valuable for us deep leaguers. Keep up the good work!

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  3. suicide squeeze says:

    That’s a pretty NL-heavy lineup thus far. Is there inherently more joy in the NL?

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    • Jack Weiland says:

      As a Cubs fan I can assure you this is not the case.

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      • matt w says:

        Actually, it might be worth trying to quantify the amount of joy there is in different baseball locations. I can take a stab at the top and bottom:

        1. Tampa Bay
        2. Cincinnati

        27. Pittsburgh
        28. New York (Queens)
        29. Houston
        30. Chicago (South Side)
        31. Mudville

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      • suicide squeeze says:

        Pretty good list, but I’d say the Sox are definitely higher than 30th. Matt Thornton, Alexei Ramirez, and Adam Dunn not playing defense are enough to push them at least into the low 20s.

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      • matt w says:

        …oh crap, I totally got the South Side and the North Side mixed up, didn’t I? I’ll never be able to show my face in Chicago again.

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      • doug K says:

        I’m so glad you corrected that. The Cubs are possibly #30, but the White Sox are possibly in the top 5 with Morel set to blossom. And watch out for Beckham’s bat now that he isnt trying to learn a new position in the spring for the first time ever. And then there is Stefan Gartrell who would make this team based on my eyes but not his age and minor league stats.

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      • matt w says:

        Well, the point (besides riffing off Jack’s comment) was really #31.

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  4. Tim says:

    watchability-cum-performance..nothing like a little bit of esoteric Latin to make your readers wonder what the hell you’re talking about

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  5. CircleChange11 says:

    When workling on formulas to convert stats into player ratings for ‘The Show’, Kimbrel and Marmol break every formula for K/9. You just have to say “okay these 2 are 99′s, no matter what” and then figure it out for the rest of the league.

    I have now just become a Tim Collins fan.

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  6. aldenrobinson says:


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