Eric Longenhagen Prospects Chat, Pie

1:02
Eric A Longenhagen: Howdy, chat.

1:02
Eric A Longenhagen: You’re all perfect children of god. Let’s chat about baseball.

1:03
Eric A Longenhagen: Oh wait, top 100…

1:03
Eric A Longenhagen: Please check that out if you have yet to.

1:03
Eric A Longenhagen: OKay, now let’s start.

1:03
Sonny: What level of consistency do you need to see from Max Fried to feel comfortable moving him up in the rankings?

1:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Probably like half a season? That’s a long enough time of sustained stuff to feel good about him being that guy consistently.

1:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Same for Walker Buehler.

1:04
Greg: What’s your scouting report on Brendan McKay? Seems like most I’ve read say 90-93 fastball, good curveball and not much of a changeup. Why is that a top 10 pick?

1:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Good, strong pitcher’s body, he’s athletic, left-handed (although not everyone cares about that or even thinks it’s good) and has a great arm action.

1:05
Eric A Longenhagen: There are also teams on him as a bat, 6 future hit, 6 raw.

1:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Those teams are betting that him focusing on hitting full time yields big things.

1:05
Philip : How many players in this years upcoming draft do you consider 55+ FV right now? Green, Kendall, Faedo, Bukauskas, Wright maybe? Does Hall/Royce figure in?

1:07
Eric A Longenhagen: All of them have 55s+ right now, Wright the one of the group that on the fringe of it. Faedo has been just okay this year but it’s still early, Bukauskas has been dominant and has moved up.

1:07
Eric A Longenhagen: And then the pop-up name you all should know is Austin Beck, if you haven’t yet heard the name.

1:08
Eric A Longenhagen: plus or plus-plus runner, plus arm, big raw power, potential top 10 pick from NC high school.

1:08
Jim Lonborg: Do you see a future for Kyle Kendrick? And conversely, do you see the RS about ready to give up on Brian Johnson and Henry Owens?

1:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Yeah Kendrcik will probably throw another few years as a 5th starter, depth arm. He’s a great athlete and can pitch forever, just not exceptionally well. He’s had a great career. I’ve never been on either Owens or Johnson. Never thought Owens was athletic enough to reign in those limbs and Johnson’s body seems to have gone south. Red Sox list is coming though so will deep dive into those guys.

1:10
Scott: Eric, what are your thoughts on Ian Oxnevad? Saw him a few times last summer and was impressive.

1:11
Eric A Longenhagen: I kinda dig him. Put him on the back of the Cardinals list. Upper-80s, curveball feel, repeats his delivery. If the body yields more velo he’s suddenly a very good prospect.

1:12
John: An optimistic view of JB Bukauskas puts him in an MLB rotation in 2018. How realistic is that?

1:12
Eric A Longenhagen: Innings limits are probably prohibitive but, as a reliever? Totally reasonable.

1:12
Matt Brownlee : Does Keynan Middleton have a shot at making the Angels opening day roster and being a significant contributor in their future?

1:13
Eric A Longenhagen: Has been erratic in what I’ve seen but he throws really hard and is a definite prospect for me. Probably a part of the bullpen’s future yes, not sure it’s as a closer or anything like that though.

1:13
Lee: Hey i know this is OT, but i’m struggling to find a printable 1 page cheat sheet for my offline fantasy draft. Any suggestions where i could find one?

1:14
Eric A Longenhagen: Microsoft Excel

1:14
BK: You have 3 Blue Jays on your top 100 (Vlad Jr, Alford, SRF). Who are the most exciting Jays prospects that didn’t make the cut?

1:15
Eric A Longenhagen: I like Urena, all of their first rounders from the last two years, Josh Palacios…they’ve got some guys

1:15
Scott: Is Kirilloff getting TJ a cause for concern? It’s quite rare for an outfielder to get the surgery.

1:16
Eric A Longenhagen: Maybe you worry he doesn’t have the great, RF arm when he comes back but he was drafted where he was because of his bat and that should be fine.

1:16
Brandon Johnson: You’re one of the few people who have Yadier Alvarez higher than Michael Kopech. What went into that decision?

1:18
Eric A Longenhagen: Similar ceilings, Yadi less perceptible relief risk because of the delivery. As far as deliveries go, Kopech is Dominique Wilkins, Yadi is Dr. J.

1:18
Eric A Longenhagen: But I wouldn’t gripe with someone who flipped them because they thought Kopech’s slider was better right now.

1:18
Sonny: Canadian Superstar Tyler O’Neill’s omission from the top 100 due to his contact issues or lack of projection?

1:18
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes

1:18
Jane: Do you have much of a sense on how Melissa Mayeaux would grade out? Have you heard anything?

1:19
Eric A Longenhagen: Haven’t checked on her in a while but when I did it was 30s and 40s except for the glove. She has great hands.

1:19
John: Franchy Cordero has impressed with his opportunity in big league camp. Any chance he can ever become a solid regular?

1:19
Eric A Longenhagen: Has the tools for it, has just always played beneath them.

1:19
Tommy N.: Noticed Jacob Nix was first on the just missed list for RHPs. Was he the #101 prospect?

1:20
Eric A Longenhagen: Nope, Pache and Franklin Perez were the last two cuts.

1:20
Eric A Longenhagen: And both were on at like 4 different times during list creation. Doing a top 100 is weird.

1:20
976: What are your thoughts on Sean Murphy, the catcher Oakland drafted in 2016? Any offensive hopefulness there or is he strictly a defense-first backstop with a cannon?

1:20
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m a fan, think there’s something to the bat, too. Had hand injury issues last year.

1:20
Not Felix Fermin: better closer prospect: AJ Minter, Joe Jimenez, Zach Burdi?

1:21
Eric A Longenhagen: Burdi. Minter is right there with him on stuff but can’t stay healthy. Already has a nerve issue this spring.

1:21
Philip : Higher upside purely (not likelihood of doing it): Nick Senzel or Tatis

1:21
Eric A Longenhagen: Tatis

1:22
TO Fan: What does the schedule for the last 2 divisions of team top prospects lists look like? Does top 100 release slow it down?

1:23
Eric A Longenhagen: By a couple of days it did but part of the reason I saved these two divisions for last is because clubs like LAA, BAL, SEA, etc will go quickly because they’re shallower systems.

1:23
Roman : If you had to rank Eloy Jimenez as a prospect with the rest of the young Cubs when they were prospects (Bryant, Schwarber, Russell, Baez) where would he fall? Thanks

1:24
Eric A Longenhagen: Behind that group.

1:24
AlternativeFactMan: Is Alec Hansen the type of prospect who could make a monster jump in various rankings this year? Seems like in a short time period the White Sox fixed some issues holding him back.

1:25
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes, assuming what we saw in pro ball last year was not a mirage. Was definitely a small sample. I saw Hansen…twice after the draft last year I think? Definitely looked better but if mechanical tweaks were made they were too subtle for me to notice and recall them right now.

1:25
Matt: Why does Pi day always sneak up on me?!

1:26
Eric A Longenhagen: Because it isn’t also your mom’s birthday like it is mine? Also my PA Dutch roots force me to pie all the days pie is a thing.

1:26
O Dizzle: Which former top prospect do you think will have a big season this year?

1:26
Eric A Longenhagen: Buxton

1:26
Nick: What can you tell me about the 2018 draft? Beer is the popular name at the top but are guys like Rocker & Turang close?

1:27
Eric A Longenhagen: I definitely think Turang is close, purely based on my looks at him at Area Codes. Rocker…I’m weary of guys who have matured, physically, as early as Rocker has.

1:27
Scouting Q: Can you talk a little about the evaluation of bat speed? Seems tough to measure.

1:29
Eric A Longenhagen: It is hard to evaluate, not sure it’s hard to measure as the folks at Zepp do it every summer at showcases. It really takes reps to hone an eye for it, the hardest part for me (still) is making sure I’m not seeing effort in the swing and mistaking it for bat speed or seeing length in the swing and mistaking it for a lack of bat speed.

1:29
CarrotJuice: Apropos of “nothing”, what kind of health care do baseball scouts get?

1:30
Eric A Longenhagen: Good enough that it’s the first thing scouts talk to me about if they’re encouraging me to work for a team.

1:30
Eric A Longenhagen: But not sure on the specifics.

1:30
Matt: New time…is this a result of ARZ not saving the daylight?

1:31
Eric A Longenhagen: Yup, new time for you but not new for me.

1:31
John: are you able to tell how the yankees’ development team is getting velocity boosts out of so many college arms? change in delivery, selective drafting, conditioning, or something else?

1:32
Eric A Longenhagen: There seems to be a common arm action so I’d guess they have a way to teach it. It’s pretty cool. We’ll start talking about the Dodgers like this soon, I’m guessing. Like half a dozen of their guys were touching 95+ yesterday on Day 1 of minor league spring training games.

1:32
Anthony: There’s always been a perception that scouting and analytics are conflictual. As an analytically-inclined scout, do you think there’s buy-in from most scouts today on things like spin rate that would be more associated with the analytics side of things?

1:33
Eric A Longenhagen: It’s a mixed bag. Some scouts are aware and well-versed in that stuff, others are not. Teams have differing views on how much they’d like scouts to know about a player they’re evaluating before they see him so not every team would prefer them to be aware of it.

1:33
Charlie: Hi Eric, thanks for taking questions: who has highest floor and highest ceiling among Will Benson, Brady Aiken and Nolan Jones?

1:34
Eric A Longenhagen: Floor: Jones, Ceiling: Benson

1:34
Snow: MUA HAHAHAHAHA

1:35
Eric A Longenhagen: Sure, snow. Have your fun.

1:35
Eric A Longenhagen: While you can.

1:35
Legeisc: Surprised that you had Martes rated higher than Tucker on Top 100 based on past comments. Anything specific change your opinion (e.g. too hard on Martes for one really bad start in AFL)?

1:37
Eric A Longenhagen: I talked to people who saw Martes during the year, took a step back and re-evaluated my own assessment, and put what I thought was the right FV grade on him, and he slotted on the list where that put him. Welcome to prospect writing, where a totally different but still defensible opinion is one phone call away.

1:37
Chachi: What makes Cristian Pache interesting?

1:38
Eric A Longenhagen: 70 run, 70 arm, potential 70 glove in CF, hit in affiliated ball as a teenage last year, has a non-zero chance to hit for some power if the body and approach develop in the right way.

1:38
Ben: Do you think Kapriellian has the stuff to debut this year and ultimately become a #2 SP?

1:39
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes but I think that’s a confluence of all the best outcomes.

1:39
O Dizzle: What do you think of Tyler Glasnow struggles in spring training? Seems like he is still not ready for the majors until he can throw a good change up and improve his control.

1:40
Eric A Longenhagen: Same thing I’ve thought about Glasnow for several years, he either develops those things or is a reliever. (checks watch)

1:40
John Wick: Do you think Bellinger will have an adjustment period because of his swing path and aggressiveness?

1:40
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes

1:40
Chachi: I’ve heard buzz on Rockies OFer Daniel Montano. Anything here?

1:40
Eric A Longenhagen: Yup, I pit him on the Rockies list. http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/top-24-prospects-colorado-rockies/

1:41
Eric A Longenhagen: Haven’t gotten reports on him this spring yet, though. Will have to get up there to see him.

1:41
Erik: Gleyber Torres’ grades translate to about a .280 hitter with 20 HRs, 3-5 steals, and average SS defense–in other words, very close to what Asdrubal Cabrera put up last year. Should the Yankees be satisfied if he turns out to be Asdrubal Cabrera 2.0?

1:41
Eric A Longenhagen: Hell yes, Cabrera has been a big leaguer since I was in high school , that would be a great outcome for Torres and the Yankees.

1:42
John: Of the Yankees rookie league prospects, I was least impressed with Wilkerman Garcia. If he can caught down on K’s, I was more impressed with Dermis Garcia and thought Leonardo Molina was better as well. What say you?

1:43
Eric A Longenhagen: Not offended by any of that, would just note there are those who prefer Wilkerman because they think his defensive foundation is stable at shortstop.

1:43
Murdoc: What’s the story behind that Otani footage you shot?

1:44
Eric A Longenhagen: Hokkaido has spring training here in AZ and he threw last year so I took off from my day job (at the time) and went. He was electric. Up to 99 in his first spring start. He’s perfect.

1:44
Guest: Why isn’t patience/approach given a grade? Seems like it’s a pretty important tool. Too subjective?

1:45
Eric A Longenhagen: Too hard to grade in the small sample of looks scouts get, much better to just look at a larger body of work on paper for that specific thing, though that too comes with caveats.

1:45
jda: Can a single spring training look change your opinion about a prospect you’d seen and were comfortable evaluating the previous summer/fall? What if the difference between last year and this year isn’t physical development?

1:46
Eric A Longenhagen: A great question. This is a scenario I’m only experiencing for the first time literally right now. My top 100 went up in the morning yesterday (before I woke up here, actually) and then hours later I was out at games watching players I had just ranked and it felt odd.

1:47
Eric A Longenhagen: And two of them were Ariel Jurado and Yohander Mendez.z Mendez was a top 100 guy and Jurado was just off of it but after seeing them yesterday I might flip them, but doing that after one outing seems dumb….

1:48
Eric A Longenhagen: I don’t know, I’m still wrapping my head around the whole thing. Pretty sure this is what mid-year updates are for, though.

1:48
Rum Ham: What is the Amed Rosario floor? Can Alderson be confident he doesn’t have to find a stopgap at shortstop as Cabrera’s contract expires?

1:48
Eric A Longenhagen: Barring injury I think his floor is an above average everyday player.

1:49
El Duderino: If you could go back in time and scout ANY player while he was in highschool. Who would it be?

1:49
Eric A Longenhagen: Probably someone who we never got to see play baseball again, like Michael Vick maybe?

1:50
Hank: I appreciate all the prospect work. When does draft stuff start?

1:50
Eric A Longenhagen: Soon as lists are done and I take a quick breather we’ll have a 2016 draft board to fill last year’s gap and the first 2017 draft rankings.

1:51
Zonk: Regarding Cubs prospect Jose Albertos, Keith Law said Cubs were hiding him last year so clubs wouldn’t ask for him in trade. That makes no sense to me; why would you want the industry to undervalue your prospects? If you don’t want to trade him, there is an easy fix for that….don’t. Am I missing something?

1:53
Eric A Longenhagen: It would have been hard for the Cubs to say “no” to a deal that included Albertos as a second or third piece last year. They were trying to win the World Series and you can’t exactly justify a pitcher in complex level ball getting in the way of that pursuit.

1:54
Eric A Longenhagen: Shutting down a prospect like that and hiding him until this year means he can start the year at an affiliate and be the type of prospect that is the centerpiece of a deal on his own, not just some AZL throw in who has barely pitched.

1:54
Eric A Longenhagen: That’s my own logic, not what I’ve heard about the Cubs in this situation.

1:55
Zonk: Did the Cubs overpay in sending a legit prospect, Donnie Dewees, to the Royals for DFA Alec Mills? Do you think the Royals undervalued Mills, or is Dewees not that good? Or the Cubs just have plenty of OF prospects, so who cares?

1:55
Eric A Longenhagen: I think Dewees is just okay. Had a scout put a 20 on the arm. That doesn’t play in CF at all and if he can’t play there he’s not a regular.

1:56
Q-Ball: Thanks for the top-100 list! Jemier Candelario was in your “next 30”. He is slimmer in camp, if his 3B defense improves, does he move up for you?

1:56
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes

1:56
Bip: I guess I will be the proxy for the raging discussion on the top 100 list: is there really a big difference between Aaron Judge and Matt Chapman, or are the commenters blowing up about a ranking difference that looks bigger than it is?

1:58
Eric A Longenhagen: A half grade separates them and only because we’ve seen Judge be able to make adjustments several times, cutting his strikeout rate at each stop after some reps there. Chapman hasn’t done that. I think he’s a terrific prospect, I’m just more apprehensive about the stability of his offensive profile.

1:58
Sam: Your write up of the Yankees farm system is the best thing to ever happen to me. Besides the hyped guys like Torres and Frazier, who is someone you just have a good feeling about?

1:58
Eric A Longenhagen: Abreu

1:59
Rebel IPA: Sal Romano and Jayson Aquino have had great STs so far. Who do you see having a bigger impact moving forward?

2:00
Eric A Longenhagen: Romano has better stuff, Aquino is really fun to watch junk=ball his way into outs, though.

2:00
Cameron Dave: I’ve seen it said that Robles is a potential 5 tool player. What are the chances that he develops enough power? It sounds more likely that he’s a leadoff or #2 hitter.

2:00
Eric A Longenhagen: Around 40%?

2:01
Alex: How does Otani compare to Darvish or Tanaka when they came over?

2:01
Eric A Longenhagen: Definitely a better prospect than Tanaka, would have to sit and ponder about Darvish.

2:02
Larry: How is Gio Gonzalez for a Sean Newcomb comp?

2:02
Eric A Longenhagen: I get what you’re going for but Gio was in the big leagues at 22.

2:02
Gest: Who’s better today, benintendi or yelich?

2:02
Eric A Longenhagen: Yelich

2:03
Cool guy: Gut feeling on a non top 100 guy who you think could jump into top ~25 next year?

2:03
Eric A Longenhagen: If I thought someone had that leap in them he’d be on the list

2:03
Connor: What is the ceiling in Tyler Beede?

2:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Realistically, a #3 or a #3/4 (a 60 or 55 on the scale)

2:04
Erik: I haven’t played basebal in 6 years and am now thoroughly unathletic. Would I get 20 grades for everything, or do I break the scale and get zeros or even negative grades?

2:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Deuces

2:04
Erik: You mentioned Otani would be a 70-FV and your top prospect, but then you only talked about his arm. Is he a 70 as a pitcher alone, or is he a 70 as a bat and arm combined? What grade would he get as only a hitter?

2:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Have heard as much a 70 o nthe raw power from the left side but 55s and 60s on the raw in general. I wouldn’t eff with an arm like this by asking him to do anything more than pinch hit here and there but that’s just me.

2:06
Eric A Longenhagen: And if the kid wants to hit more than that in MLB and not allowing him to do so is the only thing preventing a deal, I’d say “yes, Shohei, where in the lineup would you like to hit?”

2:07
Matt: Maybe I just can’t find it, but can you try to get hard links to your team-wise and top 100 prospect writeups somewhere in the nav bar? Seems useful.

2:08
Eric A Longenhagen: I’ve asked but was told it would take a significant overhaul, sorry.

2:08
SWFC: Who do you see as being the most productive major leaguer – Christian Pache, Andrew Stevenson or Dustin Fowler?

2:08
Eric A Longenhagen: I think Fowler is the safest bet but Pache has the highest ceiling.

2:08
Matt: Kyle Higa…Higa…He Gonna hit the snot out of the ball. Do you see him being a solid major-league BUC? Anything more? Cervelli seemed like a borderline starter to me, and the Bucs obviously favored him as a starter.

2:09
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m with you. The arm strength is an issue but the receiving is fine and yes, there’s power there that is rare for a catcher.

2:09
Sonny: The 2017 is short on 65+ FV prospects, does the current # seem low bc of how many high high ceiling guys have come up lately or is it a correction to historical norms?

2:10
Eric A Longenhagen: I think it’s just because a lot of them have graduated and we were close to having several others from this top 100 lose rookie eligibility last year as well.

2:10
Jerry: Does Cal Quantrill merit more Slider projection than you’ve indicated, given that he’s still coming off TJ, and the arm action and delivery are solid?

2:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Depends on the scout you talk to but, generally, breaking balls are considered less projectable and more innate than changeups. It’s either there or it isn’t.

2:12
Prison Mike: Do you think your lack of experience, in comparison to prospect writers at BA and MLB, works against you when using your opinion on prospects? Or do you think you’re basically at the same point as the guys doing this for 10-20 more years than you.

2:13
Eric A Longenhagen: I think it has pros and cons, several of which I’ve ruminated on but don’t have the time or space to illustrate here and probably not the desire, either, because those things are probably best kept in my own head.

2:14
Matt: Remember that other Yoan? Any insight to Yoan Lopez? Seems like his mild-hype has completely died.

2:14
Eric A Longenhagen: He is The Monkey’s Paw incarnate.

2:15
Steve: So us readers can tell pretty quickly the difference between the BA and MLB prospect rankings and the garbage put out by BP and all the no-name wannabe sites. You’ve firmly placed yourself with the BP group.

2:16
Eric A Longenhagen: Internet gonna internet.

2:16
Robert: Did you feel like you had to include a prospect from every team in the 100 or did you expect every team to have a top 100 prospect? I was a little surprised about ARI.

2:16
Eric A Longenhagen: Nah, just happened that way.

2:17
Matt: Your list is bad, and you should feel bad.

2:17
Mike: So as your first year writing a top 100 list on your own, you figured it be a good time to go out on a limb and make all sort of crazy rankings. Smart.

2:18
Nick: Can you go work at BP so Fangraphs can actually hire an experienced prospect guru in here? Thanks

2:18
Chad: We want Kiley back. Shit I’d maybe prefer Dan at this point.

2:19
Paul: How valid are the comparisons between J.P. Crawford and Francisco Lindor? Are their similar minor league totals a coincidence, or can you actually see J.P. having similar success? I’m asking mostly about the offensive capabilities.

2:19
Eric A Longenhagen: I think Lindor > Crawford. Lindor is a generational talent in my opinion.

2:19
Trevor : Approximately where would Luis Robert be in your top 100?

2:20
Eric A Longenhagen: Either in the 50 or 55 FV tier, spoke with scouts who spoke to both.

2:20
mario mendoza: Curious, what “software” do you use for scouting? A tablet w stylus? pen & paper? some kind of special software for tracking players w notes so you can move them around?

2:21
Eric A Longenhagen: I use a notebook but have considered going digital because it’s more efficient for me to find that information later than it is to dig through my notes, but I think taking notes by hand and then plugging them in to my own database helps with recall so (shrugs)

2:22
Dale: Any Padres J2 kids showing anything surprising in the backfields in Peoria.

2:22
Eric A Longenhagen: Haven’t been there yet, SD’s first minor league game is…tomorrow I think.

2:22
Andrew: Why are scouts worried that Triston McKenzie is too “skinny?” He’s still a teenager! Also, Chris Sale.

2:23
Eric A Longenhagen: Because he’s really, really, superlatively skinny. And Sale is unique, not someone you point to as precedent. I think McKenzie will be fine.

2:23
Flipper: When you speak of the “violence inherent” in Honeywell’s delivery, to what specifically are you referring — his head jerk?

2:23
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes

2:23
Shlomo Lipetz: When was the last time you uttered the name Felix Pie aloud?

2:24
Eric A Longenhagen: Last Fall. Not sure why I remember that, but I do.

2:25
Shlomo Lipetz: What was the biggest “I was totally wrong about that player” in your career?

2:25
Eric A Longenhagen: Dom Brown

2:25
Bork’s Unborn Son: how big are Clint Frazier’s biceps?

2:26
Eric A Longenhagen: They’re starring in the next Fast and Furious

2:26
5 Run Homer: I’m supposed to be reading Les Mis right now, what am I missing?

2:26
Eric A Longenhagen: Being sad.

2:27
Adam: My friend who follows amateur baseball much more than I is saying that Brice Turang is a name to know for the 2018 draft. What do you know about him?

2:28
Eric A Longenhagen: Based on my assessment from last summer at Area Codes, similar archetype of player to a lot of really good shortstop prospects: Tools in a vacuum are just okay, but at shortstop they look really good.

2:29
Eric A Longenhagen: Okay everyone, that’s all for me.

2:29
Eric A Longenhagen: See you here next week?

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Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.

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Ben Hall
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Ben Hall

Hey Eric,

I hope you don’t think for a second about people writing in trash. They’re not worth any time at all.