Baseball America’s Top 100

Today Baseball America released their Top 100 list for 2010, and two Phillies made the list

15. Domonic Brown
93. Phillippe Aumont

In the accompanying piece, they incorrectly list the Phillies as having 3 guys on the list, but the above 2 are the only 2 I found. More interestingly, the Phillies were 2nd in the category of “most prospects on list by original organization”, as there were 6, behind only Tampa Bay at 7. The other four were Drabek (25), Taylor (29), Knapp (64), and D’Arnaud (81). All of that said, I’m still glad we’ve made the moves we have. Another pennant, the best pitcher on the planet, and three good prospects is a worthwhile return for the prospects given up.

66 thoughts on “Baseball America’s Top 100

  1. Prospects help you win baseball games and pennants, either by giving you cheap production you can suppliment with expensive FAs, or by giving you the ability to trade for high need areas before or during the season.

    The Phils over their strong playoff run have done both, and look to continue. If any of their high upside guys pan out, they can either play or trade them, depending on need. Only if they have none of their young players pan out will we see any real decline in the major league club’s overall dominance of the NL East.

    The whole thing reminds me so much of the Braves in the 90s. Strategic FA signings, young cheap players, both All Stars and regular joes, providing a seemingly endless stream of high ability clubs, year after year. I don’t know the the Phils will replicate the Braves’ amazing run, but I have to admit I don’t see the other NL teams challenging us any time soon, espicially if the afformentioned high upside players pan out.

  2. I hear you on whether the cost of the recent trades was worth it. As an Eagles fan, you quickly learn that being very good all the time is little consolation if you never win a championship. It really is all about the ring and you have to take some risky and costly extra steps to get it. The Phils are walking that walk.

  3. I’m going to be making a run up to reading this year. How far in advance do they announce whose pitching at AA? I’d love to go up there when Aumonte is pitching.

    Braves have some excellent young talent, but I think they’ll come up short this year, but challenge if we can’t retain Werth in 2011.

  4. Psujoe, the Reading Phillies website is extremely good at listing probable starters. They’re probably the best in the region at that area.

  5. I agree with all of the moves except the Lee trade. I don’t think we got even close to fair market value. I hope to be proven wrong.

  6. The Halladay acquisition doesn’t happen without the Lee deal. We got more for Lee going than we gave for him coming here. Plus we had him for a WS run, plus we still have Francisco. I know, some disagree with this. Knapp may end up as an ace, but with his injury and being in low A is a tremendous risk. Donald and Marson don’t seem like super losses at this point. Who knows on Carrasco. I take Aumont over Knapp — same raw ability, but more advanced. I take Gillies over Marson. Ramierez vs Carrasco is almost apples/oranges, but I’ll go Carrasco. Donald looks like a washout.

  7. Marson is a starting catcher in the big leagues most likely this year. He might get replaced by a better prospect, but he offers significant value.

    Gilles is probably the most overrated prospect in our system at this time (and I am not knocking James for rating him high). It is really impossible to say how his stats were affected by his offensive environment. There is a reason that most scouts are not rating him as much more than a 4th OF.

    I am OK with the prospects we got back for Lee, but it is not clear that we got more. We got one fewer prospect and we are also getting prospects further away from the majors where lots can happen. Carrasco is a much surer bet to succeed over Ramirez given his track record at high levels in the minors for instance.

  8. People are writing him off because he did it in the Cal League.

    I don’t think all prospects should be evaluated the same based on the Cal League. His game is never going to be about power. But I don’t see how playing in a hitter’s haven would impact his speed. His 2009 line translated to the FSL would have made him one of the best prospects in the league. He draws walks, he cut down his K’s significantly, and he has blinding speed. Not to mention he did in his age 20 season, in A+ ball. I fail to see how looking at that, compared to his 2008, makes him a 4th OF.

    A slow power hitter playing in the Cal League in a hitter’s park and a guy with Gillies skill set are completely different, but it feels like a lot of evaluators just lump all Cal League guys together, unless they were hyped up first round picks, then they get a pass no matter what.

  9. The stat that jumps out at me for Gillies (besides his ridiculous OBP) is the 14 triples. How does a player finish #2 in triples, in all of Minor League ball, while playing in a band box? He also had the high OBP the year before, so it is not like 2009 was a fluke.
    The Gillies bashers need to grab the baseball america almanac and count up how many categories Gillies finished top 5 in ALL of Minor League ball. Then add up all of the categories any other Phillies prospects finished top 5. You will see why he should be rated #2.

  10. Its a shame it took Floyd being traded for him to realize his potential. That #9 rating seems to be accurate at this point…given his last two seasons ERA+ of 119 and 114 respectively.

  11. I’m surprised Carrasco isn’t even on the list. I’d place him just above Drabek. Drabek has a history of arm injuries and has not yet appeared in AAA. Carrasco, just 8 months older, has already appeared in the majors, and pitched more AAA innings than Drabek has in A+ and AA combined.

    I am Gillies fan, ranking him a hair behind Aumont as third in the Phillies system, and think he has been valued pretty fairly for a 25th round outfielder with very little home run power.

  12. I can not figure how Gillies is seen as an over-rated prospect. You have a prospect with elite speed, elite arm, elite defense, and good contact skills. He is a 4 tool player with numbers to back his tools.
    There is no other Phillies’ farm hand that has both the number of tools and performance that Gillies has. Seems because he was not rated high in 2008, the scouts have a hard time moving him up in 2010. Michael Taylor was ranked in the 20’s as a Phillies prospect in 2008. Last year you could not find any source that would rate Michael Taylor in the top 100 prospects. He was even rated behind the likes of Jason Donald. Seems that Gillies suffers from the same type of perception issues due to previous rankings.

  13. I still think we get to wrapped up in the rankings. Utley was never ranked, but is the best second baseman in all of baseball. Howard was not ranked until it was already pretty clear he was a bonafide stud (and still not ranked in the top tiers). The Phillies do a better job of teaching the talent they have. Maybe it is because they move guys slowly, but they have a lot of homegrown talent on the field, plus filled some key positions (#1&#3 pitcher) by trading some of that talent.

  14. On Gavin Floyd . . . he was never going to make it in Philadelphia, with the intense pressure and hair trigger tempered fans. I never saw a player who looked more afraid on the mound than Gavin Floyd. I’m happy for him that he’s developed into a solid middle-of-the-rotation starter, but I don’t miss him and I would not want him back.

  15. Gilles = a slightly less good version of Raphial Furcal. As said above, a 4 tool player, with each of the 4 tools a plus, or a plus plus rating. The only question seems to be can he continue to do it at the higher levels? Considering his age, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say it’s at least as likely as any other player his age. There are no sure things at this level, and if he can maintain his OBP, he’s a shoo in for a solid, maybe even an all-star, type career.

  16. To me Gillies has a pretty good comp in one of the elite prospects of this year. If you compare him and desmond jennings, Gillies stats are very comprable. Another fine year in Reading and the list makers won’t be able to leave him off. High Desert and no pedigree have cooled the buzz on him for this year, but next year he could be a high riser.

  17. Desmond Jennings- 305/391/457 with 134 steals in 163 opportunities over 1373 PA in 4 years.
    Tyson Gillies- 321/419/447 with 80 steals in 113 opportunities over 977 PA in 3 years.
    They both have been young for their level and aside from a bit less SB % Gillies compares favorably. Of course he has to do it at Reading, but I am encouraged.

  18. Gavin Floyd got jerked around and had his confidence shattered by the way he was managed. I’d take him back in a heartbeat. That was a horrible trade especially since we turned around and gave Gio Gonzalez back to the Sox in the very next trade for nothing. What a waste. I’d rather have Floyd sitting at 4 right now and Blanton at 5 and no chance of seeing Kendrick or Moyer in the rotation…that would be ideal.

  19. ****Drabek has a history of arm injuries and has not yet appeared in AAA.****

    One TJ surgery is now a “history of arm injuries”? He had one fairly routine surgery and bounced back to 100%…not really a huge deal.

  20. I do tend to think that we might end up regretting trading Carrasco. He’s an interesting guy, in that he’s the (possible) counter example of the “there is not such thing as real clutch ability” argument.

    I’m mostly persuaded that this is usually true, but that’s partly because virtually everyone who makes the major leagues is “clutch” in the sense of able to perform well under presure. Carrasco just seems to lose his composure in a way that could prevent him from ever having a major league career. But if he can conquer that problem, given his age/minor league performance/stuff, he really could be a pretty good 2.

    I wouldn’t put him ahead of Drabek, but I think that his upside is more or less the same, with a bigger downside risk because of makeup issues.

  21. I’m very excited to see the Reading team on the field. Brown, Gilles, and Susdorf in the outfield with Galvis, hopefully Harold Garcia in the infield plus Kennelly somewhere plus a rotation with 5 prospects of various degrees plus several releivers with mlb talent should prove to be a very good team. By the way, I’ve seen many pictures of Gilles on line without his shirt and the guy is chiseled and not a little guy. I think he can really surprise people and be much better than initially thought. Go Phils!

  22. I don’t put much stock in that kind of thing. No Phillies prospect was ever more built than Bobby Estalella.

  23. I always tried to get my sideburns to be like Estalella’s, but always failed. He had the ‘roids on his side, I suppose.

  24. Andyb,

    I’d have to disagree. I think the Phils got much better value for Lee than they gave up. First, everyone leaves out the fact the Phils got a solid young #4 OF in Ben Francisco. His contract and Flexability really help the Phils. I don’t think Carasco, Donald or Marson ever do much in the majors. I loved Knapp’s upside, but he’s got some arm issues. I’d trade Marson, Donald, Carasco and Knapp for Francisco, Aumonte, Gillies and Ramirez any time.

  25. I haven’t seen a single ‘prospecter’ (KG, Klaw, etc.) not rate the players we got from Seattle ahead of the players we gave to Cleveland.

  26. I think Gillies is one of our top 10 prospects. I like him in that he does a number of things well. I just think he is overrated because of his stats. It is not just being from the California League. It is playing his home games in the best offensive park in the Cal League. All his power was at home. While it did not affect his average as much, it did affect his walk rate. With no power pitchers will come at him more directly.

    That does not mean he does not have superior OBP skills than Gose at this time. I think Gose has better tools, however, and is a little younger relative to level. I think Gillies is more of a .290 average guy with limited power this year. Whether he can maintain his walk rate is an open question.

    As to his speed – yes it is a great tool. He still needs work on his base stealing percentage however. I don’t know enough about his defense to really evaluate whether he is better than Gose.

    I just think we are reading too much into a limited set of stats produced in a good offensive environment. The stats say elite prospect but none of the scouts do. This makes me want to see a little more before elevating him to elite prospect status.

    I also share the same qualms as everyone else about Aumont and durability. But I also think that Aumont is the best prospect we received in the Seattle trade and maybe by quite a bit. He has elite pitching tools. He has lots of questions to answer, but his upside is much greater than Gillies. To me rating a player depends on lots of factors – tools, age, performance relative to environment, etc.

    One last note for the poster that commented on the 14 triples. High Desert is an average park dimension-wise (340 down the lines, 401 in center). It is a good offensive park because of thin air (3000 feet elevation). High altitude parks are good triples parks because they are NOT band boxes generally.

  27. While it may be premature to label Drabek “injury prone”, besides his TJ surgery, he was shut down early last year, if not due to an unreported injury than at least to a “tired arm”. My point is that compared to Drabek, Carrasco has been much more durable, and durability is very important for a starting pitcher. Carrasco was ranked #2 in the Phillies system by B.A. last year, behind only Brown and was ranked #1 or #2 in the Phillies system for the last couple years by several publications, including PhuturePhillies, B.A. and B.P as I recall. He seems to have dropped a lot after just one season that really wasn’t all that bad. Granted he didn’t look so good in his first 5 starts for the Indians but there are plenty of major leaguers who struggle at first. Carrasco is still young and still learning, maturing, and improving.

  28. “I’d trade Marson, Donald, Carasco and Knapp for Francisco, Aumonte, Gillies and Ramirez any time.” Add to that consideration a half season rental of an ace who had an historic post-season – Phillies win that combined trade as far as I’m concerned.

  29. The following statement seems so true:
    “unless they were hyped up first round picks, then they get a pass no matter what.”
    and maybe add
    or if acquired by Yankees, Red Sox, or Mets.

    On the list I am suprised that Knapp is so high. I think he is pretty even with Aumount but maybe because he is younger he has more projected upside. Knapp does look like a top power pitcher.
    D’Arnaud may be a bit high but it appears he will stay at catcher with an above average bat. That is quite valuable. They Blue Jays were smart to require him in the deal.(Probably as compensation for kicking in $6M which could sign a few high draft picks. (Yes I hear there is a different budget but I have no idea how that makes sense. It’s all money the organization needs to pay.))

    Nobody knows where to rank JC Ramirez. Good stuff but not enough dominant stats to back it up. I think he is the only quality pitcher for the Phils that could become a starter in 2011 just because of the limited innings/level of all the other arms. (Bastardo and Aumont need more innings.)

    Power is valued over speed in the majors and therefore in the minors. Power hitters tend to have higher OBP as well. Gillies will have to prove himself at every level. Is Juan Pierre a reasonable comp?

  30. I don’t like the Pierre comp. Pierre never walked much. 6.3% in the minors, 5.6% in the majors. I think he’s closer to Chone Figgins in terms of skill set. Figgins was 9.8% in the minors with a 16.6% K rate and .111 ISO. In the majors, 10.1% BB, 15% K rate, and .097 ISO. His BB rate spiked last season, which raises his numbers. But his 2009 line of .298/.395/.393 with 50 SB instead of 40 is kind of what I expect from Gillies, but with gold glove defense in CF. Gillies actually is bigger than Figgins, so I think he could actually be a .290/.380/.415 hitter, with the 50 SB, and the gold glove defense. Which makes him an elite player, even more valuable than a Figgins type.

  31. Brett Butler is the kind of player Gillies could aspire to. That’s extremely optimistic, but it’s a guideline.

  32. Drabek was shut down because he went from something like 30 IP to over 150 IP from one year to the next…not due to any injury.

    Yeah, he was worn was essentially his first full pro season.

  33. PP i love me some Gillies, but you may like him even more than me. I think you are right on with him though.
    Alan- Brett Butler had much better plate discipline but I think a lil less power. We would be very lucky if thats what he ends up being

  34. I do not like the Pierre or Bourne comps to Gillies. They are different type players. The comp I’ve been waiting to see someone mention is Gillies to Jacoby Ellsbury.
    If Gillies provides a .290/.380/420 at Reading, he will compare favorably to Ellsbury. Compare the numbers. Jacoby was older than Gillies in AA. Ellsbury played in the Eastern League, is the same size, and has the same tools.

  35. I think Gillies is going to continue to improve. The Phillies don’t have to rush him as he won’t turn 21 till the end of the year. He will be learning from the best base running coach, Davey Lopes, this spring to help him on the base paths. I see another .300 + year and 50+ sb at Reading.

  36. I thought Brown was being hyped as our “leadoff man of the future” but this looks like it will possibly be Gillies.

  37. No. Brown is being hyped as a “middle of the order hitter”. Brown has much more power potential, and would be wasted as our leadoff man.

  38. i sure hope that gilles feilds better than ellsbury. that guy killed the redsox outfeild d last year. he made jason Bay look decent, and made JD Drew look spectacular.

  39. I saw some nice quotes by Pat Gillick in Lauber’s piece today re: Aumont. I really think we got an undervalued/underappreciated (see prosepect ranking lists) talent in this deal. Summarized, Gillick asks how anyone could develop as a starter or a reliever only throwing 50 innings last year. But he seems very confident that Aumont is a major league pitcher, and that he will be a starter.

    General question: How much less risky is a high school draftee, once you see him play in High A or even AA?

    Gillick watched this kid leading up to the draft, and then saw him a few years later (last year) in the AFL. My unprofessional opinion is that a guy with Gillick’s experience can draw a nice evaluation of a guy seeing where he was vs. where he is now.

    I don’t think a Josh Johnson comp is unrealistic. Let’s hope!

  40. ***so I think he could actually be a .290/.380/.415 hitter, with the 50 SB, and the gold glove defense***

    that would be awesome, and if so, would be much more impactfull than any of the three hitters we gave up to get Lee.

  41. “General question: How much less risky is a high school draftee, once you see him play in High A or even AA? ”

    Once he gets to AA, about equally as risky as a college pitcher.

  42. I’d say a HS kid that has reached AA with normal progression is generally safer than the college kid, if performance is the same. The college pitcher invariable is two years older and has more mileage on the arm, from overuse in college. The HS kid will still have some projection left, while the college guy doesn’t and is just working on control and perhaps refining a secondary pitch.

  43. For fun, I did a comp with Gillies and Rafael Furcal through age 20:
    Age 19
    Gillies Furcal
    Level A– to A+ Rk
    OBP .430 .335
    Steals 50 15
    OPS .885 .677

    Age 20
    Level A+ Rk
    OBP .430 .412
    Steals 44 60 OPS .916 .827

    Of course, Furcal was a SS, and so is a more valuable position, but Gillies is a CF, which is just a little less valuable. Furcal went on to become a very valuable player, worth 3 or so wins above replacement over his career to date while leading off.

    I don’t know if Gillies will continue what he’s done to date, but things look a lot better than I thought at first with him. In fact, I can see him making the majors as early as next year, if this one goes well and if other things break right. 2012 is more likely, with him moving into the leadoff position in 2013.

    He’s got a terrific batting eye so far, and if he can keep up an OBP of 400 or more, he’ll easily be good for 130 runs and 50+ SB each year, and make several all-star games. At worst, he’ll be a utility outfielder and pinch runner, but with a consistent batting eye, I predict he’ll stick at the everyday position.

  44. Another point, when PP comped Gillies with Figgins, note that Figgins never topped .400 OBP in the minors ever. His overall minor league OBP was only .346. At age 20, he was in A-, with a .345 OBP and a .694 OPS.

    Compare that to Gillies with a .419 career minor league OBP, and at age 20 he was in A+ ball and has an OBP of .430(!) and an OPS of .916. I don’t expect the power to be that great outside of high desert, Gillies produced a great OBP everywhere in the minors, with a little pop along the way. I expect he’ll get on base better than Figgins, if we can judge at all from what he’s done to date.

  45. Probably jumping into this discussion late, but I’m going to side with andyb on this one: I think I like the prospects we gave to Cleveland a tick better than what we got back from Seattle.

    There are a couple of reasons. First, I’m simply not as high on Aumont as some others are; I see Knapp as a younger version of Aumont, but with a better chance of sticking in the rotation, which gives him the edge for me. Second, I think it’s fashionable to rip Carlos Carrasco now, but he’d clearly be our best pitching prospect at this point if he were still around; he’s much better than Ramirez, at any rate. Third, while I’m not nearly as down on Gillies as andyb is (I have him at #2), I still think Marson and Donald provide value as a second division starting catcher and a solid utility guy; call that one a wash if you want, since Gillies may have more upside but is far from a sure thing.

    Now, I know that the half-season of Lee and the acquisition of Francisco have to be factored into the calculus as well, but my point wasn’t to get into all that. My point is simply that I think some people are overrating what we got back from Seattle, while underrating what we gave away. I think part of it is that the Indians very much “bought low” with Carrasco, Donald and even Marson to an extent.

  46. Figgins had an odd development path. It’s a dangerous game to compare current prospects with specific past prospects and draw conclusions. Often successful MLB players are not necessarily players who excelled in the minors, but they are players with decent minor league pedigrees who beat the percentages. Figgins for example had a .345 OBP in the Northwest League, yes. 20 year olds with higher OBPs than Figgins at that age and league include Ismael Garcia, Omar Rosario, Shawn McCorkle, Victor Martinez (not the Red Sock), and Oscar Salazar.

  47. PhillyFriar —
    No, I don’t think anybody is saying that. You want to do the comparison just on the minor leaguers and say, just ignore Francisco, I don’t want to talk about that. But, Francisco has quite a bit of value and we have him for considerably longer than the 1/3 of the year we had Lee. It’s fine to set aside the Lee contribution last year, saying we know it is great. But if we are comparing what we gave to get Lee vs what we got when we traded him, then Francisco definitely has to be included, because we did not trade 4 minor leaguers for Lee, we traded 4 minor leaguers for Lee and Francisco. So, when I say I think we got better value for Lee than what we traded, I mean than Francisco plus Aumont plus Gillies plus Ramierez beats Carrasco, Marson, Donald, Knapp. I’d still not be all that unhappy taking Aumont, Gillies, Ramierez for Carrasco, Marson, Donald, Knapp.

  48. I think each player has his own path. The quality of coaching before and after he is drafted plays a large part of that path and is an invisible story in itself.

  49. I agree with Allentown, somehow the acquisition of a cheap team controlled 4th OF needs to be accounted for. Otherwise, it is like saying that the Blue Jays did better than the Phils because they got the better prospects in the Halladay trade…but wait a second, the Phils didn’t get any prospects (they got Halladay) so of course the Blue Jays got better prospects…kind of a big circle.

  50. I believe the Phillies come out ahead when you include in the Lee trades when you include Ben Fransico. It would be nice to have Carlos Carrasco, Lou Marson and Jason Donald right now as 5th starter, Back-up catcher and Utility infielder, but the Phillies would not have won the pennant without that trade. That NL pennant is worth the cost of what Carrasco, Marson and Donald could provide for the present team.
    on the whole, the Phillies do not have spots available for young players right now. They traded readiness, for more potential. In short…
    Gillies > Marson
    Aumont > Knapp
    Ramirez >> Donald

    I respect Philly Friar’s opinion on this and loved his top 30 (better than PP’S maybe), but disagree totally that the Phillies lost on the 2 trades.

  51. Correction. Hopefully it posts correctly this time.

    Gillies > Marson
    Aumont > Knapp
    Carrasco > Ramirez
    Fransisco > Donald

  52. But if we are comparing what we gave to get Lee vs what we got when we traded him, then Francisco definitely has to be included, because we did not trade 4 minor leaguers for Lee, we traded 4 minor leaguers for Lee and Francisco.

    I believe the Phillies come out ahead when you include in the Lee trades when you include Ben Fransico… I… disagree totally that the Phillies lost on the 2 trades.

    Allentown and mike77: agreed on this points. As I said above, I’m not at all overlooking Francisco, who’s a nice player and a great fit for the major league club. Between the acquisition of Francisco and Lee’s half-season of contributions, the organization certainly came out ahead when comparing the two deals in total.

    But where I disagree is…

    I’d still not be all that unhappy taking Aumont, Gillies, Ramierez for Carrasco, Marson, Donald, Knapp.

    See, I would. I think from a purely prospect standpoint, the two Lee deals weakened our system, especially at the upper levels. Carrasco would be competing for the fifth starter’s spot this spring if he were still around; Marson’s presence would have made Brian Schneider’s signing unnecessary, ditto Donald for Juan Castro; and Knapp would be our best pitching prospect (aside, possibly, from the more polished but lower ceiling Carrasco). Maybe it’s that I’m concerned right now over the lack of depth at the upper levels right now, but I certainly think our system is weaker with Gillies/Ramirez/Aumont than Carrasco/Knapp/Marson/Donald.

    That’s the distinction I’m trying to make, anyway — that we came out ahead on the two Lee deals, but weakened the system a touch from a purely prospect standpoint.

  53. PhillyFriar,
    I admit that there may be some ‘the grass is greener on the other side of the fence’ in my saying that I am satisfied with Gillies/Aumont/Ramierez over Knapp/Carrasco/Marson/Donald. Based on his last season, I am more worried about arm injury with Knapp than with Aumont,although that may be result of following Knapp’s travails on Phillies boards. I did see Donald, Marson, and Carrasco in person last season. Really two seasons for Marson and Carrasco. Carrasco did not pitch at all well at Allentown this past season and that is what my evaluation is based upon. I realize that he did much better for Cleveland, and admit that I don’t quite know what to make of that. I’ve always liked Marson’s defense and obp skills and have always hoped he would generate more power as he developed. Going from Reading to Allentown, he lost 50 obp points and also lost power, which has me questioning his ultimate offensive production. Donald was just awful with the bat for Allentown and did not sizzle defensively. Somebody suggested upthread that he could be the Phillies utility IF. I don’t like either his offense or defense enough to see that as a match.

    I have mixed feelings about Ramierez as a guy with a good fastball who pitched poorly last season, although in a hitter’s park. I am really enthused about both Aumont and especially Gillies. I see Gillies as Gose with strike zone management and the ability to get on base as well as steal bases. With some tutoring from Lopes, I think he’ll be an awesome basestealer. He’s big enough that he may well develop a bit of power as he develops. Based on ballpark, I discount his power from last season, but not his obp.

    Aumont seems to have rare native ability, with a really solid fastball. We’ll see how durable he is.

    I’ll get to see all 3 of these prospects at Reading, so perhaps my view of the relative value of the prospects will change after I get a closeup look at the flaws of the guys we got.

  54. Allentown, when I looked at Gillies, I saw a guy who was near the top of the OBP for the entire league and I think lead the league by a large margin for guys who played every day all season (I didn’t cross check every team). All this as a 20 year old in a league of 22 year olds.

    I know things don’t always translate, but a .430 OBP in a league where you’re 2 years younger than everyone else is fantastic even if he never stole a base. Throw in the basestealing, and you have a Ricky Henderson without as much power, but at a harder defensive position.

    He’ll probably not get that good, who indeed has? But the odds look very good to me that he’ll at least be a quality everyday CF. Hit ceiling is just shockingly high, IMHO.

  55. One note on Gilles .430 OBP. I agree it is the best part about him as a prospect. A leadoff hitter with speed that can actually get on base is very valuable.

    But also consider that the team OBP for High Desert was .364. For Clearwater it is .315. Now it may be very true that High Desert was a better offensive team. But if the true OBP for Gillies is closer to .380 than .430 than you have a very good prospect, not an elite prospect.

    I am not anti-Gilles per se. Just trying to temper expectations and I am not ready to say that every scout (who mostly see him as a 4th OF) is wrong.

  56. I understand the notion that the Phillies are weaker from purely a prospect standpoint. I guess I disagree because I do not hold Lou Marson or Jason Donald in as high regard as most. I understand that Marson has added value because he is a passable catcher. But if your in the camp that believes Marson is not a true starting caliber catcher, then it is not an obvious net loss to the farm. The pitching swap probably favors Cleveland, but that is arguable. Jason Donald’s loss is near meaningless.
    The key to what perception you have, is Marson vs. Gillies. If you believe Marson is a true ML starting catcher, then the Phillies lost more than they gained. If you believe Tyson Gillies will be a starting CF and Lou Marson is a back-up catcher, then you probably believe the Phillies had a net gain overall. I believe the latter.

  57. Agreed that Gillies is more valuable than Marson. Now, if the comparison were Gillies versus D’Arnaud, that is a harder one to make. If D’Arnaud becomes a power-hitting starting catcher, that’s a very rare and valuable commodity in major league baseball.

  58. We did just spend $2.75 million for a decent backup catcher for 2 years. While Marson does not have the “veteran grittiness” I think he is probably a better catcher at this point than Schneider. I actually like the Schneider signing because I think Ruiz is more of a 400 AB guy, but I think Marson would have excelled in the backup role.

    We tend to discount some of the parts in the first Lee trade for very small bits of recent information. Remember that before the trade we did not know the extent of Knapp’s injury. We suspected it, but did not know. His value has dropped since the trade. Also, we know that Carrasco had some problems at AAA, at least with the Phillies. His age/performance numbers at previous levels were just fine, however. Better than Ramirez and Aumont (when you consider Aumont only pitches 50 innings a year). I think Carrasco will be a decent major league pitcher. Maybe only a 3/4th starter, but still a major league pitcher with value. It took Gavin Floyd a few years to establish himself as well. Floyd’s initial AAA record was also mediocre, especially looking at peripherals.

    I like the prospects we got back from Seattle. I just think we gave a little more in total prospect value at the time of the trade to Cleveland. Maybe that is rose-colored glasses looking at Phillies prospects we have followed for years. All the prospects we gave up other than Knapp were at the AAA level already. The Seattle prospects are all a little farther away and that should be considered in evaluating which package was better.

  59. Gillies, Aumont, and Ramirez all need to pass the AA hurdle, supposedly the toughest in the minors. Carrasco, Marson, and Donald all cleared that level.
    Aumont seems similar to Knapp. Big Arm, needs work.
    Ramirez and Carrasco are unpredictable. Good arms, need better stats. Carrasco would spend another year in AAA behind Moyer.
    I really like the Schnieder signing so I’d like to have Marson as insurance in AAA. Marson will not be the starter in Cleveland very long with Santanna on his heels. D’Arnaud projects better but has to produce through some more levels.
    Donald would be the guy I’d love to get back. He may still become an above average backup who can play SS in a pinch. He has a great attitude, would be controlled for 6 years, and could step in as an infielder who can play anywhere he is needed.
    Gillies will at least be a useful backup OF with the possibility of being a quality leadoff hitter. As mentioned by others, I agree that the opinion of trade value rests with how good is Gillies.

  60. Andyb, The way you worded your last argument, I can agree. “… I just think we gave a little more in total prospect value at the time of the trade…”
    The Phillies mayhave given up more total prospect value, when you consider the talent is similar, but the Indians received more advanced prospects. Even if that is true, the Phillies did not hurt themselves. The team is not in position to use those players now for meaningful contributions. They are better off if they received their 2012 closer and starting CF rather than a 2010 backup catcher and borderline 5th starter. 2012 is when they need real contribution from young players. The trades were just re-shuffling of rescources, at worst. No loss.

  61. In an “Ask BA” column, you get to see which other Phillies minor leaguers were considered for the Top 100 list. BA shows how many people’s Top 150 lists the prospects showed up on and their highest rank:

    May – 2 lists (out of 4) – #87 highest rank
    Valle – 1 – #105
    Cosart – 1 – #148
    Gillies – 1 – #149

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