Top 30 Accountability: 26-30

I started this series with players who didn’t make the list, and now will be stepping through the list 5 at a time.  The list itself can be found here

30. Gabriel Lino 

This is a tools pick, it came down to three catchers for the last spot in Lino, Grullon, and Rupp.  I aimed high on the projection because he is a pure boom or bust player.  Lino has huge holes on offense and defense that are not allowing his monster tools to appear in game action.  Lino is still very young so there is time, but there is a lot that can go wrong here.

To anyone who has seen him, Lino looks the part in the uniform.  The problem is despite the power, the arm, and the increasing defensive prowess, he just swings and misses too much.  He received a demotion this year and proceeded to have his numbers regress (.062 jump in BABIP).  Lino still has sky high projection but the defensive tools are on the level of Rupp or Grullon.  I didn’t expect the demotion and it really changed my whole way of thinking about Lino.

29. Jose Pujols

Pujols is a dream at this point.  All we know is he has massive batting practice power generated from strength and ridiculous bat speed.  Pujols has almost no game approach at this point and his swing will need to be retooled to close up some holes that will be exploited.  In the field Pujols has the arm and range for right field.

Jose Pujols is still a dream, but I am glad I ranked him.  The power is massive and the ceiling is high.  But after reworking his swing in the middle of the GCL season he was able to drive the ball out of the park.  The big remaining questions is the pitch recognition and approach (still ultra aggressive at times, though can take a walk when he wants).  The big thing is that Pujols has incredible bat speed and has present 70 grade raw power with plenty of room for physical growth.  Yes he will be higher on this years list, but it is hard to rank these guys higher out of the gate.

28. Aaron Altherr

I have always liked Altherr as a prospect and I like him even better now that it appears he can stick in center defensively (the arm might make up for not having elite range).  Altherr may never be a star or a solid regular, but I feel more confident after his 2012 that there is a major league player in there (at very least a 4th outfielder).

Altherr really hasn’t changed too much, he showed more power at the cost of more strikeouts this year.  He has yet to put it all together and in his 5th season it is a question about whether he ever will.  I suspect Altherr will move up a little bit this year now that he should be going to AA, but you can almost copy/paste the same writeup.

27. Kevin Brady

Brady fell in the draft due to injury, but he showed a plus fastball and good breaking ball in his debut.  The changeup has potential as well.  Brady dominated in his debut but the competition was not great.  He will likely double jump to Clearwater where he could move very quickly.  If the changeup doesn’t come he could arrive very quickly in the bullpen.

This was a bad call.  I was debating between Brady and Hoby Milner towards the back of the list.  While I don’t think Milner is a starter long term, he did get the jump to Clearwater and put up pretty good numbers.  I personally would have let Brady air it out from the bullpen, but the Phillies tried starting him and the control and injury bugs hit him and it all fell apart.  There are reasons guys like Brady fall in the draft and it isn’t always best to pin hope on a college guy giving starting a try with bullpen fall back (see Garner, Perci).

26. Kelly Dugan

Upon first looking at just the numbers I had Dugan much higher on this list.  However, his year was driven by an unsustainable BABIP given his high strikeout rate.  There are things to like, Dugan walked at a good rate and made good contact.  After his injury he played a good right field with a plus arm.  At first base he is little more than an org guy and will need to stick in the outfield.

I still don’t know what to do with Dugan, I didn’t mention the power which is a negative on my part.  The walk rate was a huge plus in Clearwater but it evaporated in Reading (he did still work deep counts).  He is going to get a big boost up the rankings because AA is a lot different then low-A, but the strikeout rate is concerning and the upside is limited.  The biggest thing he did this year was prove he is a corner OFer with a good arm and solid defense.  That should put to rest all of the 1B talk and make me much more comfortable about the floor.  In the end he should have been at least in the high teens ahead of Zach Collier, this is a case of really overthinking the ranking part of the equation.  I really didn’t see the breakout coming to the extent it did either.

About Matt Winkelman

Matt is originally from Mt. Holly, NJ, but after a 4 year side track to Cleveland for college he now resides in Madison, WI. His work has previously appeared on Phuture Phillies and The Good Phight. You can read his work at Phillies Minor Thoughts

33 thoughts on “Top 30 Accountability: 26-30

  1. Dugan should be ranked around 10th. There are not many guys in the system with his combo of power and average/OBP potential, and have actually lived up to it. He held his own in AA. He was drafted in the supplemental round, so he has upside and pedigree. I think he could easily be an effective September call-up next year because the big club will stink unless Amaro becomes un-Amaro like and makes good moves.

  2. At pick 30. Change to grullon. You have no idea what a rocket for an arm this kid has. Lino has plus arm strength but a slow release. Always around 2.0 release time and bel aver bat. Also make sure you get drew Anderson in the top 20, go ahead and exchange him in place of guellar. There is no comparison here. Anderson way more ability and upside. Drew was easily the ace of the williamsport staff, and was voted top pitcher by the club.

    1. You do understand that this is a retrospective, right? That these rankings were released before the current season and he’s looking back to see where he went right and wrong, and that they’re not supposed to apply now?

  3. Understand Altherr and Dugan are not future All Stars, but in the 20’s? in this system?

    1. This is a retrospective of Matt’s preseason top 30. In his mid-season update, Matt had Altherr at #17 and Dugan at #7.

  4. I don’t want to get all rosy over Altherr but there’s really a lot to like from his first taste of Advanced-A ball particularly considering what we knew of him heading into the season. 58 XBHs in the FSL is quite notable. After a hot April he struck out a whopping 40 times in 96 PAs in May but thereafter reduced his K-rate with each month ending with a K-rate under 20% in more than 100 August PAs. I hate going out on a limb, I hate saying that I’m going out on a limb, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a monster year out of him next season at Reading with an OPS well over .800. He’ll probably never hit for enough average to be a regular but he’s certainly back on the radar for me and will probably fall in the middle teens in my next prospect ranking. Keep the K-rate closer to 20% and we may still get some value out of him

    1. He definitely took a big step forward in my opinion. He think he’ll unlock those tools a little bit more next year as well

  5. I had Kevin Brady even higher than you did at 23, though in my defense, I did have him right behind Cameron Rupp and Kelly Dugan, which makes up for the badness of my Brady pick. I will pretend, for this exercise though, that I did not rank Brody Colvin at 19. Didn’t happen.

    Boy, my Top 20 is littered with almost-non-prospects and graduates. Thank god the Phils have a top-heavy system with Crawford and Franco and Biddle, or the team ranking would be way down this year. As it stands, I would not be at all surprised if it went down a couple, (though I think it probably holds or goes up a couple). There were few breakout guys in the high teen range to fill in for the weak play of the Wrights and Valles and Guellers and Greenes. Plus I count six grads in my Top 20, maybe seven if Cesar goes over, which he probably will. Those holes will mostly be filled by 2013 picks and low level guys. Hardly anyone above A Ball forced their way from outside the Top 20 into it. Dugan and Severino, if you count him as “above A Ball”…that’s it, I think. The rest are Perkins, Altherr, Knapp, Sandberg, MAG, (I guess), Encarnacion, Grullon, Pujols, maybe Jan Hernandez plus Zach Green and maybe Drew Anderson if I’m feeling frisky…not bad on the whole, and some serious upside in a bunch of those guys, but worse than what I think we thought we had last year.

    Ok, I’m done rambling.

    1. We haven’t even climbed into some of my terrible calls yet, 11-15 is really terrible, 2 horrible calls, 2 “I have no clue how to rank them any more” guys, and one dead on call.

      Worst then the ranking 2 out of 5 reports are even close.

      But on a whole I expect the farm system ranking to go up because Crawford is a better prospect than anyone graduated and Franco and Biddle did go forward (debate on how much). The 2013 draft also added some talent to the system and another year for Tocci, Pujols, and Grullon certainly helped. I still don’t think it is a Top 15 system.

        1. If I had to pull a number off the top of my head they probably end up in the 17-20 range, depending on the opinions on the Top 3 guys (Biddle, Franco, Crawford)

            1. Crawford appears to be a heady draft selection but all in all our system has seemed to take a step backward; pitching in particular. Sure, there were a number of positive developments but they were clearly outnumbered by disappointments. Given that a good deal of skepticism remains for Franco (at least on the national stage), I would be surprised if we cracked the Top 20.

              Now of course, we must account for the graduations, trades, and 2013 FYPDs of our competitors as well. But all things being equal it’s hard to envision us moving up

            2. and Matt, if I can make a suggestion. Though I understand what you are going for, ‘accountability’ seems a bit rigid and lends itself to focusing on players who may not have met expectations due to poor performance or failure to stay on the field as a result of injury. The latter obviously outside of your control or predictive powers.

              You guys do great work here and I’d contend that it’s more difficult to rank a system devoid of talent or talent concentrated at the lower levels than a system flush with talent. From my perspective I would wish for you a re-branding of your story line from ‘Accountability’ to something along the lines of ‘Pre-Season Rankings Revisited’.

              Just a suggestion for next season as you’re already well down the path here

    2. I’ll still be interested in Brady next year. I don’t think anyone can rag on you for ranking him that high (I don’t remember but I may have had him higher) as he seemed like a guy with a very interesting profile. It was weird how he sort of just disappeared and then we found out he was hurt late in the year.

      I think Seth Rosin might make it in my top 20. Maybe right at 20.

  6. Pitching poor still exists, unfortunately. All the more reason to:

    Hope the team finishes within the first 10 in the coming draft;
    Rooting for the Giants to WIN, win, win, Right now we are one game behind them in the run for the top 10.

    Can we permissively root for the Phils to LOSE, lose, lose?

    If we DO end up in the top 10, we could sign some free agent pitcher without losing any draft choice, right? And, in the draft try for the “best college pitcher available.”

    Strange to hope my team loses a’ plenty.!

    1. We’d still be losing a draft pick, except instead of a guy in the 10-15 range it would be a guy in the 45-50 range.

      1. I think we should keep both our picks and not sign a FA this winter, at least not a FA who requires comp.

        1. 100% not sure if I agree with you makes your point more credible or not. But i agree

            1. There is a Cuban 1st baseman who supposedly has 5 tools , and maybe he could squeeze into the outfield , although I like an outfield of Ruf, Brown and Revere , maybe im biased because I like our guys but I think it could work , maybe give Howard away if he cant be atleast an average 1st baseman , but that doesnt makes sense either , maybe just be bad for a year or two and collect up some real talent and then be a dominant team for a long time. Man I miss this site already
              well done Bradindc and Mattywinks and the rest of the people involved.

    2. ha ha I live there and find myself rooting for that alot , well ever since 2010

  7. This really wasn’t a bad over last winter rating for these guys. One could quibble a little, but not at all unreasonable. As to Brady — injuries happen and can’t expect you to predict them.

  8. The system took a step forward this year, so debate over the players that deserved to be ranked 25-30 is just quibbling over minutiae.

  9. Agreed. The system most definitely improved. It’s been years since we’ve been able to acquire top tier talent like Crawford in the Rule IV and Encarnacion in the LA FAs. This system lacked blue chip talent which is what scouts noted. It’s nice to have depth but give me a top heavy system any day with a team that has deep pockets.

    1. GCL, position undetermined, I want to see where he takes reps in instructs. I don’t think the position matters right now. I think it is 1B/LF long term and more 1B than anything else

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