Head to Head – Recent College Starting Pitchers

We move on to a group of guys that were 2011-2012 draftees out of big college programs and have thus far been starting pitchers in the Phils organization.  I could include Adam Morgan in the group, but there’s not much to debate with him.  He’s a top 5 prospect easily after his incredible season and the concensus of the scouting community seems to project him as a mid-rotation starter in the relatively short term.

So who does that leave?  I have 3 guys in or near my top 30: Austin Wright at 17, Kevin Brady at 24, and Hoby Milner at 32. 

I guess Wright is the least surprising.  He had a pretty good year after a double jump, holding down his walks and keeping his K rate fairly high.  He didn’t do much to hurt his stock, but he didn’t shine like Morgan through the whole season.  He may still wind up as a reliever if he can’t get advanced guys out a second time through a lineup with a third pitch beyond his fastball and curve.  AA will be a test of that, for sure.

Milner is a strange case.  He was a swingman at Texas his senior year, and BA had him destined for the pen.  The Phils ultimately may do the same, but they had him transition back to starting in 2012 and he excelled after he got himself stretched out.  In six August starts, he raised his K rate considerably and lowered his walk rate to a similar magnitude.  See below from FirstInning.com:

Split Statistics with Lakewood in 2012
Split IP TBF BB/PA K/PA BABIP GB% ERA
July 27.1 120 12.5% 14.2% .280 41% 4.28
August 35.1 133 5.3% 22.6% .250 36% 1.27

If you don’t out of practive already, remember to ignore the ERA, as he clearly got some fair luck on batted balls in August.  Whether he’s stretching out to get innings for an eventual return to the pen, we’ll likely find out in the next year or so, but with increased K numbers, good control, and what BA called good command of his curve (which they called his best pitch), and his change-up, the Phils would be doing themselves a disservice to not stick with the lefty in the rotation as long as he produces.

And so, as promised in the comments on the last one of these, I will now get really excited over Kevin Brady, (everyone go read Mitch’s article from the summer if you haven’t already).  RHP, touches 94-95 with his fastball, throws what BA described as an inconsistent change and hard breaking ball.  He’s an injury flag, from the start; he was drafted in 2011 but didn’t sign after a forearm strain left him out of action for a while, and in 2012 he was picked in the 10th round after a hamstring issue allowed him only 59 innings. 

The thing about Brady that first caught my eye was towards the end of July when he struck out 8 men in three innings.  By the end of his Williamsport season, he’d walked 5 and struck out 49 in 39IP. That kind of dominance will easily earn him a double jump, and if he’s healthy, and he can reproduce in 2013 the kind of season Austin Wright produced in 2012, he’ll stay on the radar as a starter in the middle of a very crowded top of the system by the end of the year. 

And if he does what Adam Morgan did in 2012, we’ll be seeing what kind of room there is for him in Reading’s rotation come July.  That seems a little crazy to me, but I sure did just write it.  And I’m not taking it back.  And in July, you’ll all have forgotten about this, or I’ll delete it in disgrace, or if it comes true, I WILL LINK TO IT IN EVERY SINGLE BOXSCORE RECAP AS A REMINDER OF MY AWESOMENESS.

Anyway, should be a fun year to watch Lehigh Valley and Reading.  Add in the likes or Perci Garner, David Buchanan and Tyler Cloyd, and you likely won’t go more than one game in a row without seeing a prospect or an otherwise interesting name on the hill at either place.

So, tell me what you think.  First off, does anyone have another similar pitcher in the top 30, outside the clear top 10 guys like Biddle, Morgan, Pettibone, and Martin, plus 2012 HS kids? I like Vargas about on par with Brady, but they’re at different points in their development for sure – anyone high enough on Manny Martinez, (a mellow buzz, from what I hear), to put him ahead of Milner?  Anyone think Milner’s a teeny little man who will never make it as a starter?  Anyone still have Garner in their top 30?

Enjoy, and I’ll be back at this next week with advanced level outfielders, then young starters, and finally low-level infielders leading into the weekend before the top 30, and as always, follow me @bxe1234 on Twitter.

84 thoughts on “Head to Head – Recent College Starting Pitchers

  1. Brad you’re awesome anyway. None of these guys were really on my radar because of their age and level but I will take note and pay attention. For pitchers I love WHIP and K/9. For context on those 2 stats consider the following

    Hamels minors .950 WHIP and 12.4 K/9
    Verlander minors .902 WHIP 10.3 K/9

    And would you believe before his call up in 1986 Jamie Moyers career in the MiLB was a 1.057 WHIP and 7.5 K/9. I quite frankly am amazed at the career he was able to have with the stuff he had.

    1. And to answer your other questions Milner’s size doesn’t bother me if he maintains a low WHIP and decent K/9

      Garner is no longer in my top 30

    2. And in the NYPL Moyer’s SO/9 ratio was 10.3.

      Moyer pitched 104 innings, gave up just 59 hits and finished with an ERA of 1.89

      Lots of guys put up sick SO/9 ratios in half season ball every year and don’t make it out of A-ball with any kind of starting prospect status.

      Cole Hamels did not pitch in half season at all. At age 19 at Lakewood his SO/9 ratio was 13.9.

      74.2 innings just 32 hits and an ERA of 0.84. Good enough for BA to make Hamels their #17 prospect on the 2004 Top 100 list.

      Josh Beckett did not pitch in half season ball either and was plagued with a sore shoulder, but at age 20 pitched 59 innings in low-A and compiled a 9.3 SO/9 ratio. The next year Beckett was healthier and pitched a combined 140 innings in the FSL and the AA EL. His SO/9 ratio was 13.0 and his ERA 1.54. That was good enough to get him the #3 slot on the BA Top 100 list.

      Half season stats are nothing but pass/fail.

      1. I’m not sure what point you are trying to make but let’s make something really clear I don’t even look at ERA when I evaluate minor league Pitching I look at WHIP.

        A low WHIP tells me a guy can throw strikes and avoid hard contact in doing so and if you couple that with a strong K/9 it tells me he can miss bats. So using that method back in 2000 and 2001 I would have said Beckett had a pretty good chance of being a top flight pitcher in the big leagues barring injury. It’s not always going to hold up but historically its a pretty good indicator.

        This pass or fail thing you have going on is plain goofy.

        1. “This pass or fail thing you have going on is plain goofy.”

          Not at all. The biggest jumps in the minors are between half season ball to full season and A-ball to AA.

          You really have no idea what any of that GCL bunch will do at Lakewood next year. Even the Williamsport crowd could crash and burn. It happens all the time.

          Show me a 19 year old who lights up full season ball and never makes the big leagues. Any of those GCL kids – save Cozens- light up Lakewood with an OPS above .800 or Watson has an ERA under 3.00 and say a SO/9 ratio above 8 they are going to slide into the BA Top 100 list next winter.

          If Larry Greene’s OPS at WPT was .905 this summer he wasn’t likely to make the BA Top 100 list. Being the Phillies “first pick” would give him some BA political consideration but getting the 100 slot based on work at Williamsport would make his inclusion very unlikely. Do that at Lakewood in 2013 and he’ll definitely be there, probably crack the top 70 portion.

          Some loon on this site thinks Roman Quinn will be in the top 50 on that list this year. Quinn has no business getting the 100 slot. He might have a .680 OPS at Lakewood next year. No one here knows differently.

  2. Right now I have it Wright then Brady in the organizational rankings. Milner is not on my radar for top 30.
    If I had to bet on who had the highest upside (or most likely to stick as a Starting Pitcher) it would be Kevin Brady. Wright has been successful, but the reports are that he doesn’t throw strikes with his breaking ball, and he doesn’t throw a good change-up. That is not a good profile for a starting LH pitcher. Brady was a top 100 draft prospect before 2012. So Brady has the better predraft pedigree. He doesn’t have a good change-up, but that is not as critcal for a RH pitcher. His other pitches are good though. Depending on how much of an injury problem he is, I could see him passing Austin Wright in the pecking order with a good 2013.

    1. Yeah, the injuries are a real concern, but the second one being a leg injury that isn’t necessarily a common recurring item for a pitcher is a little bit of a comfort.

      I agree that Wright has some work to do, but knowing he was a JuCo and 1B prospect for a while, and only really got big time pitching coaching on the regs in 2011 at Ole Miss and forward with the Phils, I have a little leeway in my head that he’s got a chance to correct things. Might not turn out, and he may be a bullpen piece in the end. We shall see.

  3. As far as other pitchers I will be paying close attention and are just outside of my top 30: Franklyn Vargas, Yoel Mecias, Ethan Stewart and Josh Warner. I have all of these guys ahead of Hoby Milner, at this point.

    1. Stewart’s control was so bad in 2012 as to be a bit of a turnoff for me. I know someone (Mayo, maybe), had him in their top 30 just before the season, but his walks and Ks really regressed after a decent 2011. Warner seems like a longshot, though his control seems good. I like Manny Martinez, though for a 20 y.o. he’s got some moving to do to stay on track. The club seems to like him, but whether he profiles as a starter is another story.

      I will have to take a harder look at Mecias – he put up some nice numbers for an 18 y.o.

      1. Agree about Stewart. He’s not on my radar. I like Milner though. He’s listed as 165, which is slight, but at 6’2″ he’s not a teeny little man. Maybe he’ll put on some more weight. If the Reading rotation weren’t so crowded I could see him getting a spot there this year, but I guess they might as well let him start in Clearwater for awhile instead.

        1. What was Cole Hamel’s weight when he first appeared in the majors? Had to be around 175/180. He was rail thin at 6’3″.

          1. Yeah I thought the same thing. Maybe Hamels’ frame is bigger than Milner’s, but I still wouldn’t be concerned about how big a guy is when he’s 6’2″ and 21 years old unless he was a total beanpole.

        2. Milner showed a nice feel for pitching- but after the first 2 innings his stuff starts to drop off from the 89-93 he begins with. But it was after a long college season, so he’s certainly worth watching. He’s got a very narrow, Ross Detwiler kind of body- which I guess is probably deceiving given that Detwiler is one of the few bean poles to actually keep his power stuff (though I still think he’s going to blow out before he puts together a full season or two as a starter).

    2. I’m driving the Josh Warner bandwagon, even though I was more hopeful early in this past season than I am now. The chances he’ll add some velocity are diminishing, but I like that he held his own in W-port as an age appropriate Aussie, which is like being young for the league as far as I’m concerned.

  4. I quite like Austin Wright maybe moreso than most. I have him at least near the top 10. I feel like he would have gotten the call for Reading had Brody Colvin not “needed” to be thrown into the frying pan (and die a sizzling death).

    1. December Interview (excerpts) with Austin Wright-Phoulballz.
      – How much time off from throwing do you take during the off-season? When do you begin a throwing program to prepare for spring training?,,,,,,I took off October and November and started throwing December 1st.
      – I know you’re a Chicago area guy. Do you have a hard time finding a venue to keep your arm in shape during the colder months?,,,,,,,,,,No, I’ve got it down. I have a pitching mound in my basement, where I do dry drills, and then in mid-December my dad sets up a warehouse to be used as a baseball practice facility for local teams. It allows me to air it out a little, and I workout there with my dad until I leave for spring training.
      – What exactly is your routine during the off-season and is this year different than your routines from previous off-seasons?…….I’m doing the same things I did last year during the off-season. From the time I get home, I spend a lot of time at the health club, doing a variety of classes and workouts. I do yoga, swimming, core workout, weights and run a little 5-on-5 basketball.
      – When trade rumors pop up, do you ever worry about having your name attached to stories like that, or would that be welcome, because it might mean you have impressed another team and you are a hot commodity?……….I try not to worry too much about things that are out of my control. Right now, I’m just focused on improving my game and I’ll let the business side take care of itself.

    2. The Scammies paid Colvin $900,000 so they’re going to find a way to get their moneys worth even if that’s enjoying the view of him getting rocked on the mound.

        1. Same reason why Lefty 32 is answering pass/ fail posts under anonymous. He wants someone to read his brilliance and not skip over it.

      1. I wouldn’t give up on Brody Colvin despite his dismal performance the past two seasons. His stuff is the best in the system outside maybe Kenny Giles and I still believe he is a tweak or two away from rocketing back into the Phils plans. Not saying it’s going to happen, but with an arm like that we shouldn’t be giving up on him just yet.

        1. I agree Colvin could put his release together and really progress. He has what everyone wants. A big athletic body. Great arm and dynimite stuff. Control and command could click and he is off to the races.

  5. Not that I have too much optimism for his future, but if Hoby Milner is getting traction, might as well mention 2010 pick David Buchanan as a potential innings-eater type. He is supposed to have a good sinker, and If he can tick up his K rate a little, he could get a cup of coffee and maybe even have a bit of a Kyle Kendrick like future.

    1. Buchanan’s 2012 injury was on his pitching hand. That hand stuff affects grip and such, so perhaps his 2012 lowere K rate was a product of that. I will have him a bit higher than I do now by mid-season if he comes back and still has enough stuff to strike out at the rate he was in 2011, (around 17%). If it’s much lower than that, he’s going to have a hard time even eating innings at the higher levels. His control is his saving grace with that low a K rate, but even good control won’t make up for a 13% k rate like he had in 2012.

      1. Buchanon was about 87-90 mph with his sinker in 2011 with nothing special of a breaking ball (basically Kyle Kendrick 3 years ago). Don’t imagine that rate is going to improve as he goes higher in the system.

        1. Not thinking he’s got to improve his 2011 rate to be an innings eater like stated above. Just get back to 2011 and keep walks way down. Not saying he’s got the stuff to be in the Phils’ rotation. But maybe somewhere else without such depth.

    2. David Buchanan wasn’t a consensus top 30 guy in the organization before he got injured. It would be pretty hard to make the argument he should be considered now.

      1. Neither is Hoby Milner, but from my perspective, he’s got as much potential, at least as a starting pitcher.

  6. Anoonymous ha-ha just got on and read through. Hang in there, you are right about pass and fail at the lower levels. I can’t believe these guys think players don’t go into games and work on specific things. Maybe they also think they play for the team. Ra-Ra Wright is going to disppoint a lot of people. I know he won Pitcher of the year. I think Milner has a real chance to move up. Anon I gave you due dilligence and gave you credit at the end of yesterdays topic for your pass or fail label. It’s perfect. Clear the path the stat guys will be after me. I called them out yesterday. Just like Bianc413 I want to see a player. I like to think after all these years playing, coaching and having a keen interest in the mechanics of baseball Iwould pick up something. Bians413 got it and stated what I was trying to say perfectly. I only stayed around a little while. Sorry you guys took the brunt of the stats guys. I realize its their life but you would think maybe they would want to learn something instead of being so one minded. Anon1, Matt and Larry the man who can’t say hhhi without a 200 word dissertation. Thanks Anonamous and Bianc413.. .

    1. “Larry the man who can’t say hhhi without a 200 word dissertation”

      ROTFLOL!

      I’ve heard he looks stunning wearing powder blue panties.

  7. Anonamous now you have them all confused. I did not nor will I ever use any name but Lefty32. Why would I hide this brillance. ha-ha Be good It was you. You’ve played the game, haven’t you?

    1. posted this on another thread in response-
      Lefty…..been watching the Phillies since 1960. So a come lately ‘stats guy’. Can watch and do watch prospects, be it live or on a ‘grainey’ video. But you have to realize that statistical measurements do play a role in forecasting a players’ future. If just looking at a prospect, and seeing their swings and physiques, you can make a case that the Hewitts, Golsons et al of the world should be the next Willie Mays. Not saying first-hand accounts are not a necessity, they still are, however stats also play a key role. Also, Buddy B’s first-hand accounts I find fascinating and worthwhile and hope they continue.

  8. I find Buddy b. accounts great. I like first hand reports. I just had a differing opinion. I guess I was to harsh. I wish I was still on when he replyed. I did not intend my comment a shot by any means. Not unlike most differing opinions on the site. You keep saying “i have to realise stats play a role”. I said they do play a small role. Do you really think stats decided if Hewitt was going to make it. I would say before the stats were added up the Phil’s knew they had made a big mistake when he didn’t respond to coaching from the start. I feel like we are arguing the chicken and the egg. Did you see the movie about old school and new school scouting methods. Clint Eastwood.Same debate. Matt got offended I see and made himself look bad.. I can’t help that . I thought he was getting over that. People have different opinions. Deal with it. Bianc413 was fantastic in his description of his and my opinion . .

    1. The Phillies made a massive “mistake” on Hewitt and Savory on draft day. They were both DOA. Golson was a serious over draft.

      Hewitt and Golson were about money. Agreed to slot. Savory fit that too, but someone had a hard-on for Savory for a long time and got someone else high up to share the obsession. Too bad that didn’t happen with Giancarlo Stanton. How is it that someone scouting Stanton’s high school was not interested in him but got the hard-on for Kelly Dugan?

      1. Because it is all post fact narrative, here is the pre-draft reports on Stanton and Hewitt (there isn’t much on Dugan because the consensus was that no one would give him enough to not go to Pepperdine):

        Stanton: “For pro scouts, projection is the operative word with the raw Stanton. He was overmatched against most of the top arms he saw last summer in showcases, though he has shown improvement in pitch recognition. Stanton has a big swing with resulting big power thanks to leverage and bat speed. He profiles as a corner outfielder with an average arm that could be suited to right field with more polish. He’s a fringe-average runner under way.”

        Hewitt: “Hewitt is the epitome of high-risk, high-reward…There’s also a huge risk that he simply won’t hit in professional ball: his raw bat was overmatched against quality pitching on the showcase circuit last summer, and though he dominated vastly inferior prep competition this spring, he still struggles to recognize breaking balls and can get locked up at times by ordinary fastballs. But then he’ll crush a ball 450 feet and give scouts a glimpse of his prodigious upside. Several scouts said he was second to Tim Beckham as the best athlete at the East Coast showcase last summer, and he has three legitimate above-average tools in his raw power, speed and arm strength. His muscular 6-foot-1, 190-pound frame evokes Ron Gant, and his work ethic and charisma stand out. Hewitt plays shortstop for Salisbury, but his poor footwork, stiff actions and lack of instincts will dictate a shift to third base or more likely the outfield, where he has enough speed and arm strength for center or right. ”

        They were both lottery tickets, Stanton had the necessary abilities to improve the pitch recognition and Hewitt did not (by all accounts Hewitt works his ass off he just came in too raw and doesn’t have the ability to recognize off speed pitches). It is by far the hardest thing to properly scout on the amateur levels because pitchers are often not that good and very inconsistent.

        Just for fun here is the pre-draft report on Savery:
        “Savery’s velocity was improving in early May, as he was showing a 90-94 mph fastball for a couple of innings and still touched 90 after 100 pitches. In his initial starts this season, he worked more often at 85-89 mph. His changeup is a plus pitch, and his hard, slurvy curveball can get strikeouts when it’s on, though he hasn’t used it as much as in the past. Savery has continued to pull double duty for the Owls, playing first base and leading the club with a .353 average and 43 RBIs through 52 games. Once he regains full health, he could take off after he focuses his energy and efforts on pitching. The recent litany of Rice pitching prospects who have needed surgery after turning pro concerns scouts, but Savery could be a steal if he slides into the second half of the first round.”

        1. Take a look at Savory’s SO/9 ratio in college, it’s a horror show. The Scammies could have plucked him in the 5th round. The first pick in that draft should have been Travis D’Arnaud (they could have missed him as catchers tend to go high) and the second should have been Stanton.

          On draft day in 2008 Anthony Hewitt was 19 years old.

          On draft day in 2007 Giancarlo Stanton was 17 years old.

          Do you think that might be worth noting? Stanton was one and a half years younger when drafted than Hewitt was. Sure Stanton was “raw” as was Hewitt, but with Giancarlo there was a reason for it.

          There was also a good reason for Hewitt being raw at 19, he didn’t have the talent to hit MLB pitching. He really hasn’t shown he has a chance to hit AA pitching and he’ll turn 24 in April. Stanton won’t be 24 until November.

          1. You arguing that Stanton should have gone 40 picks earlier than he did with the knowledge available at the time. At that point this isn’t the Phillies screwed up, all of baseball screwed up. That would be likely blaming them for not taking Mike Trout in 2009 when they didn’t have a 1st round pick (and it was after the Trout pick anyway). Hewitt and Stanton were two different drafts do not compare them (Hewitt had better raw tools coming out that Stanton as well).

            We are talking about Joe Savery the College Freshman of the year in 2005 with a 2.43 ERA and 9.8 K/9 right? He was injured the next two years hurting his numbers but here what was written up at the time.
            “After starring as a freshman at Rice in 2005, Savery looked like he’d be a top-five draft pick just like fellow Lamar High (Houston) alumnus Jeff Niemann. But like a lot of Owls pitchers, Savery came down with medical issues. He had minor surgery after his sophomore season to shave down a bone growth in the back of his shoulder that was causing some fraying in his labrum. He wasn’t at his best last spring, which allowed him to slide to the Phillies at No. 19. He signed for $1,372,500. As a lefty two-way player in college, he garnered comparisons to Mark Mulder. While his fastball velocity was down for much of the spring, Savery flashed 90-94 mph heaters by May and pitched at 88-92 mph in his pro debut. He also can be effective at 86-89 mph. His changeup has the potential to be an above-average pitch and his slurvy breaking ball grades as average to plus. The Phillies rave about his work ethic.”
            Please bring legitimate arguments if you are just going to troll.

            1. “We are talking about Joe Savery the College Freshman of the year in 2005 with a 2.43 ERA and 9.8 K/9 right? “

              No, I was obviously talking about Joe Savery the year he was drafted by the Scammies and struck out just 61 in 93.1 innings. That is an appallingly low ratio for even a 4th round pick. The reason for the poor performance was SHOULDER trouble. The whole reason behind targeting college pitchers is that they are further along than high school pitchers, as young pitchers are so much more prone to arm injuries.

              Why would anyone in their right mind – if they have a mind – draft damaged goods?

              “Please bring legitimate arguments if you are just going to troll.”

              If you could manage to remove your lips from the perimeter of the anus belonging to Dave $$$ Montgomery you might have been able to locate Joe Savery’s stats from the year he was drafted. Unfortunately the only thing you seem good at locating is the “delete” button for posts you don’t like.

              Philly guys are so tough.

        2. Don’t forget there are guys that break the mold, guys that hit like Soriano,Gant or Doc Goodin’s cousin whose name escapes me. They swong at pitches over their heads and tomahawked them out of the park. There are always freeks of nature. People use Moyer’s nane which is wrong. Nobody compares to Moyer he is ohe of a kind. And I mean that as a compliment.

    2. First of all Lefty, the elephant in the room is that the numbers, properly interpreted, ussually align pretty darn well with “expert” opinion and with the “eye test.” The fact that both specific examples that you use (Franco, Hewitt) could just as easily support the “pro number” side of the debate is proof of that. When numbers are misused on this site, 9 tiems out of 10 it is by the people using a “traditional” numbers approach.

      But at a deeped level we are talking past each other. Your chicken/egg comment is actually on point, but maybe not entirely in the sense you mean. No one is saying that Hewitt will fail “because of” the numbers. But his poor numbers are evidence that he will fail. Not conclusive evidence, but evidence. You might say that Hewitt could succeed if he had a better “makeup” – if, for example, he responded better to coaching. You might be right (though IMO I think Hewitt’s prolem is more fundemental, lack of pitch recognition skills), But if you are right about Hewitt, that would have been reflected in the numbers. Chicken/egg.

      Where the debate about numbers really comes into play are the cases where there is a real disconnect between the numbers and the scouting/eye teast. As I said on another post, that comes into play more with pitchers and lower level players (also younger players as Matt clarified). But if indeed the numbers play only a “small role,” there would be many many cases of players with poor numbers going on to major league success. And there really aren’t. By the time a player gets to full season ball, 95 times out of a 100 the numbers tell – well, not the whole story, that’s the nature of prospects – but the numbers tend to at least seperate the prospects from the non-prospects. And when they don’t, it’s usually because of a player developing in an unpredictable manner (positively or negatively) in ways that can’t be predicted. The one will card here is probably “make up,” which IS important, but which is almost never knowable by outsiders until after it is reflected in the numbers. (Even a guy like Joseph has better “numbers” than is generally rewcognized around here, especially controlling for context. Of course, it is ironicly the numbers guys on this site who tend to be highest on Joseph, despite the fact that the scouting reports are more positive than the numbers.)

      As for your praise of Bianc, I don’t want to be mean, but if indeed his opinions and yours are mostly the same, you (a) aren’t doing a very good job of explaining your own opinions, and (b) your criticisms of some people around here – myself and Matt included – make little sense, because Bianc doesn’t seem to be in fundemental disagreement with our approach (that is, his approach may be different, but that’s a personal choice, not reflective of the irrational and inappropriate distain you have for the numbers/scouting/expert approach that Matt and myself take).

      1. Here’s a crude but interesting illustration of what I am talking about – go back to around 2005 – look at the leaders in OPS for hi A versus short season A – the short season leader board bears little relation to eventual major league success. The high A leader board, OTOH, is strikingly related to later major league success. Here’s the top 6 in OPS from the 2005 California league:

        S. Drew
        H. Kendrick
        B. Butler
        B. Wood
        E. Alfonzo
        M. Montero

      2. No your wrong again That was the purpose I used the chicken -egg statment. Since I believe the pass fail fact in the rookie and ss league. I throw out stats in those leagues because at that point in their development they are many times changing so many things in there game it would be usless to use stats. You can’t tell me you have never heard a player talk about a coach telling a player to not worry about their stats that he is pleased to see his improvment and it will pay in the players future. I have read that many times. Joseph had his batting approach changed upon reaching the Phil’s,. He is the perfect example of stats not being the be all. Because he looked lost when I saw him this year at Reading and Trenton .He is a perfect example of stats are not always the answer. If I had not heard that I probably would be more worried than I am. Although I hate when the Phil’s do that. Why don’t they at least let the player get settled in. .I was not even talking to you guys in the beginning. But the attack happened.. And things were said. I was just busting on you personally because of your long winded responces. I was talking about writers who obviously take the stat sheets and list their their top ten from them with no apparent sighting of the player. Then the responce got out of hand.
        I saw Hewitt in spring trainingof his rookie year and he was an impressive athlete but he was so raw’. It was a real risk from the beginning because they had such a small sample size to begin with. Him being from new england. He was rated the top athlete from hs by BA and top power I think. Of course that is why the Phil’s can’t seem to produce many of prospects. Their theory of drafting the best athlete is not working enough. I would hope this year they revert to more baseball abilities along with athleticism.

  9. just bad reads imo , by the scouts on savery and hewit, they though they saw more than was there,stanton was raw , like so many other,what the numbers dont tell you is,the ability or determination to get better. some have it, most dont.

    1. That doesn’t look like a bad read at all – (1) usually there is no way to know about “the ability or determination to get better” in a scouting context, and (2) the report hits the nail on the head as to the biggest reason IMO that he has failed – pitch recognition/overmatched against decent pitching.

      Of course a “high risk/high reward” prospect, to an even greater extent than an average prospect, is going to fail more often than not. The best scouting in the world will not pick out the few high risk players that actually make it.

      I do think the pick can be (and was at the time) criticized on an organizational basis (and BTW, as critical as I am about Amaro, I think overall the team has drafted well, just not in this case). The above scouting profile IMO is not what I want to see for a first rounder, even a late first rounder. I think pitch recognition is something that is really hard to teach – to a large extent, you have it or you don’t.

      Of course this has nothing to do one way or the other with “numbers;” I think the gratuitious swipe at numbers is hilarious in this context, showing the deep and weird obsession that the anti-stat crowd has with the issue.

        1. I think whoever’s in charge of the minor leagues and the scouts are more involved in the draft than the GM.

          1. I agree, but there was a comment about how the Phillies have drafted under Amaro as GM. The drafts that count against him don’t start until 2009. Dugan, Colvin, Biddle, LGj, Quinn and Watson are Amaro’s guys.

      1. Some teams draft of’s with a lot greater consistency than the Phil’s. It is a combination of scouting and coaching. Let’s not forget the Phil’s did not put scouting and cosistency of aching on the front burner. Their Latin area scouting is imbarressing for a big city team.

          1. Sure tell him it is one of the weekest latin programs in ML baseball. Yes Please. sO do you know him or are you just blowing smoke?

            1. Phillies are far from the worst program. Look at the Nats, Orioles, White Sox, Angels, and Astros as really bad Latin programs. The Phillies are firmly in the tier below the big guys and they do spend they just do it in smaller bonuses and not go for the big guys. In 2011 the Phillies were #17 in Latin spending. They were firmly in the middle group because they don’t give out large bonuses, by most accounts they have spent almost all of their 2012 budget. They have been pretty good at identifying players with Galvis, Carrasco, Bastardo, Villar, Santana, Franco, Valle, Hernandez, and Ruiz all being big leaguers or on pace for that future. The two largest bonuses of that group being 250k for Santana and 750k for Tocci.

            2. The last position player the Phillies developed was Carlos Ruiz who they signed for about what a plane ticket costs from Panama.

              Before Ruiz we’re talking about Juan Samuel and Julio Franco.

            3. Lefty32..new rules for now.
              Every team has a $2.9 million signing bonus pool for the 2012-13 signing period. Any team that spends more than $2.9 million will be subject to a variety of penalties:
              • Teams that go 0-5 percent over will pay a 75 percent tax on the overage.
              • Teams that go 5-10 percent over will pay the 75 percent tax on the overage and won’t be able to sign more than one player for a bonus of more than $500,000 in the 2013-14 signing period.
              • Teams that go 10-15 percent over will pay a 100 percent tax on the overage and won’t be able to sign any player for a bonus of more than $500,000 in the 2013-14 signing period.
              • Teams that go 15 percent or more over will pay a 100 percent tax on the overage and won’t be able to sign any player for a bonus of more than $250,000 in the 2013-14 signing period.
              The 2012-13 signing period begins July 2, 2012 and ends June 15, 2013. The dates from June 16, 2013 through July 1, 2013 will be considered a “closed period” when no one will be able to sign. MLB said it will need time to calculate each team’s total spending and potential penalties. Also, due to the new mandatory registration system, the commissioner’s office will need time to prepare and disseminate information about registered players to clubs.
              The $2.9 million bonus pool does have a few exemptions that will allow a team to spend a little bit more. A team’s six highest signing bonuses of $50,000 or less will not count toward its total. For 2012-13, players signed for $7,500 or less also won’t count (in 2013-14 that number goes up to $10,000). So there’s enough wiggle room to spend up to $3.2 million without facing any penalties. All players must sign a standard minor league contract, so no major league deals are allowed.

            4. Hard to imagine the Scammies spending $2.9 million in one year. They certainly won’t be looking for any “wiggle room” to get to $3.2 million.

              All that bureaucratic nonsense you just posted was probably written by Dave $$$ Montgomery. He and Bill Giles are Selig’s soldiers and enforcers.

          1. Yes it is embarrassing how I spell ed imbarresing.. Sometimes the hands get away from the brain. It doesn’t bother me unless i can’t figure out the word.

      2. Larry you brought up that point. Not the eye test guys. See sometimes you write in circles and forget who said what. I don’t want to hurt your feelings but when I see one of your long posts , I skip it. It just becomes a jumble. Didn’t your teachers tell you to get to the point. Or did you go to a school that required 500 word esseys. ha-ha

    2. The Phils knew they were taking a risk by drafting Savery as he was coming off an injury. It didn’t work out, but it was a different type of scenario than Hewitt’s.

      1. Exactly, Savery didn’t have a ton of upside but he was supposed to be a relatively safe mid-rotation starter, the stuff just never came back (until moving to relief in 2011) and it made it near impossible for him to succeed. If the stuff had come back he would have been an absolute steal.

        Hewitt was a lottery ticket (with odds close to the big powerball drawings), if he works he is a franchise making superstar (there were some Bo Jackson comps at the time, same for Golson) if not he doesn’t make it out of the minors. That is something you can criticize for taking that risk (and many did) but the scouts saw the raw tools. There is a chance that had Hewitt gone to Vanderbilt, which has a great college program he would have been one of the top picks in the 2011 draft. Welcome to prospects.

        1. I thought Savery WAS an upside pick. I thought as a sophomore he was throwing 90-95 with quality breaking pitch and developing alternate pitch with talk of him being a Top5 pick in the following year’s draft. Which I understand is significant speculation that far out.
          Of course, he had the “Rice” curse of being overpitched but with the injury there was some thought that his arm was not as abused.

          I thought before they drafted him he had a few outings where he flashed the plus velocity so there was the possibility he was on his was ‘back to his Top 5 draft pick’ stuff. It helped that he had a ‘good’ delivery and was built for endurance. He was also and excellent hitter if not a great athlete meaning he did have some additional baseball talent.

          I did like the pick near the end of the first round. Assuming the arm was on his way back the floor was considered a back end guy (if he stay at 90mph) but possible #2 type if he could get to 93+ with some improvement on the secondary stuff.

          He was a statistical anomaly as his W-L record was outstanding while his stuff was average. That might have been the time to try to trade him if another team fell for his draft status and W-L record.

  10. Scouting is like hitting, if you succeed 3 out of every 10 times, you’re pretty damn good. I don’t want to be a homer on this and say the Phils are perfect because they certainly are not but if you go back and look at the last 20 first round picks of any team in baseball, you will see names you recognize and you will see names like Anthony Hewitt.

    1. Buddy, I was not attacking you the other day. Like I guess some thought. All I was trying to do was point out another view point. I appreciate and look forward to your first person reports .

    1. Hamels SO/9 ratio his senior year in high school was above 2 per inning if I recall correctly. There was no sign whatsoever from Savory that he should be considered more than a fringe pitching prospect.

      1. So anything below Hamels’ level is a fringe prospect. Got it. Also are you actually comparing Hamels’ HS stats to Savery’s college stats? Lol.

        1. That would be pointless when we have Hamels stats at age 19 at Lakewood, which is a higher level than any college program.

          13.9 SO/9 0.763 WHIP 0.84 ERA

          Did you think you had a point to make before you clicked “Post Comment”?

          1. If it’s pointless than why did you use Hamel’s high school stats to compare to Savery? You’re the one who has no point. You also know I’m right because you haven’t responded to one of posts.

            1. “You also know I’m right because you haven’t responded to one of posts.”

              Either you haven’t learned how to master proper 4th grade elementary school English or you’re too lazy to proofread your posts.

              I haven’t seen any posts from you other than your lame attempts at insulting me.

          2. The only point you’re making is that Savery wasn’t as good a prospect as Hamels, which doesn’t take much brain power to figure out. Comparing those two is useless. Almost no prospects put up the kind of numbers Hamels did.

  11. Back to head-to-head. Wright, Brady, and Milner are all starters who have been considered as relief possibilities as they move higher. Wright has the classic build of an innings eating starter. He may very well show more control this year in Reading. Brady and Milner may both wind up in Clearwater, a pitchers’ league this year. Wright is farthest along and may take a while longer to show his control. Brady will have a break-out season. Milner (like Claypool) will have to prove himself. I have Wright at #16, Brady at #24, and Milner outside of the top 30.

  12. Savery was certainly not over pitched as he was used mostly at 1b and in relief. I think Matt is right . They thought they were getting a safe pick and he had a relatively fresh arm since he was not overused.

      1. You’re right you’re smarter than everyone else, why aren’t you a scout or GM by now?? Maybe you should start your own site and post there so I don’t have to see your posts here.

  13. Garner’s on the bubble for my top 30, but I think I’ll have him between 26-30. He has too much upside (fastball and curveball) and too little experience to give up dreaming about him.

    1. You are allowed to dream about guys outside your top 30. The top 30 should perhaps include the likelier dreams along with the highest ceilings.

  14. Thats basicly true except high draft picks that signed late . But you know they are more tallented thensome of the older prospects that just aren’t going to make it. Sometimes you have to throw out players you really like.

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