So in thinking down my Top 30 list a bit, I come to a bit of a conundrum – I have three guys in close proximity with “body issues”. Severino Gonzalez, Dylan Cozens and Luis Encarnacion.
I spoke in the comments the other day about Severino Gonzalez. He’s listed around 6’1″, 153 pounds, and he’s yet to throw many more than 100 professional innings in any given year. Since he wound up in AA at the end of 2013, I think some folks have taken to assuming he pitched a full season, but we should not forget he was in extended and pitched out fo the bullpen for much of the year. Will a slight frame hold up to starters’ innings?
We believe Luis Encarnacion will hit, based on scouting leading up to his signing, but while he was listed as a 3B, much of the same scouting seemed to think he would never be anything other than a LF or 1B in the future. So not only are we betting on a 16-year-old, which gives plenty of people pause, but a 16-year-old who’s already ticketed for the two least demanding positions on the diamond. Continue reading
Zach Green has been one of the breakout prospects so far this year. On the surface it is for good reason as he is tied for the NYPL lead in HRs, has a sizeable lead in SLG, and is 5th overall in OPS. The problem is that while his power has shown up in a big way and the walk rate has improved from 4.4% to 8.8%, his strikeout rate has ballooned from 23.5% to 29%. This leaves a conundrum, on one hand the 19 year old Green is pushing for a spot in the upper echelon of Phillies prospects, and on the other you are wondering if he is going to make it out of A ball. The truth is somewhere in between and what you are left with after walking through the tool set is the potential for a very solid prospect that has a lot of development left to do if he wants to near that ceiling.
Hitting: Green’s ability to make contact is the biggest outstanding question about him. The swing has gotten shorter since the GCL, but it has a tendency to lengthen at time. He generates good backspin and loft without selling out for plane. The bat speed is average and there a questions about how it will hold up against plus plus velocity, but it shouldn’t be a fatal flaw. His approach isn’t terrible, but he has big problems with breaking balls. Additionally, he is really streaky at the plate so he will go through stretches where he is more susceptible to breaking pitches. The good news is that he has gotten much better but it is something he will need to improve on to get past the high minors. Given all of the questions it is hard to see the hit tool playing anything more than average. Continue reading
And so, we’ve come to the last of these head to head comparisons. I wanted to look at a couple interesting names in the infield. Obviously we’ve all been through discussions of Roman Quinn, Maikel Franco and Cody Ashce, and we know a lot about some of the older guys like Cesar Hernandez and Darin Ruf, (if you want to call him a 1B still, which I guess you could). The rest of the top 30-ish infielders are young guys, drafted in 2011 or 2012. So let’s talk about Zach Green, Mitch Walding and Andrew Pullin.