Sunday notes: Moncada, draft, and other stuff

Since the Reader Top 30 is now wrapping up, I figured I should start to write a bit more. As I mentioned when announcing I was coming back, one thing I’d like to do is write a weekly post, maybe on a Sunday, with various thoughts and notes. This week’s piece will cover Cuban phenom Yoan Moncada, initial comments on the draft, and thoughts on Keith Law’s prospect list.

First, Yoan Moncada. If you’ve been following the saga closely, Moncada is caught up in some sort of governmental red tape, and MLB is currently trying to sort out how to handle things. You should read Kylie McDaniel’s write-up on Moncada here, he has lots of information. He’s basically similar to Yasiel Puig in terms of his offensive profile, with more upside, and he will likely play either 2B, 3B or CF instead of RF, which adds to his value. Unlike most of the recent Cuban imports, he is covered by MLB’s international signing rules, meaning he counts against the international signing allotment money. That means that any team that goes over their cap has to pay a 100% tax on the overage and is then prohibited from signing any player over $300,000 for the next 2 years.

There are a couple of things to consider when assessing whether it makes sense for the Phillies to try and sign Moncada. First, they have the money, which I outlined here. Second, they have an obvious need for young talent. Moncada doesn’t turn 20 until the end of May. Third, there are rumors of an international draft coming, so if the Phillies were to be penalized and restricted from signing guys for more than $300k, it may only matter for next year’s signing period. Fourth, the Phillies are not known for disobeying guidelines (the bonus allotments) set up by MLB.

From a strategic perspective, if the Phillies sign Moncada, it obviously limits what they can do next year and possibly the year after if there is no international draft. On one hand, Moncada is more of a sure thing, as much as a 19 year old can be, than all of the 16 year olds that will be signed out of Latin America. He’s a premium athlete with at least some experience against decent competition. On the other hand, he is reportedly going to get between $30-40m. That means a tax of $30-40m, which means that the Phillies will have invested close to $80m in a 19 year old from Cuba, without considering the money he will make pre-free agency. If he develops as people expect, he’ll be worth that money. But that is a big if, given what can go wrong from the time a player is 19 till he reaches his peak at 24/25.

If the Phillies do sign Moncada, they have to approach future signings differently for 2016 and possibly 2017. Given that the MLB team is going to probably be bad the next few years, the Phillies will have one of the highest bonus allocations, even though they can only spend $300k max per player. That means they can sign more players in that range (an area where they’ve actually had some success) or they can trade one of their slots in a trade for another player. So it isn’t like they will be completely shut out of the Latin American market.

Given all of that, and the risk of signing 16 year olds from Latin America, I’d obviously love to see the Phillies go after Moncada, but I’d put the likelihood of that at about 10%. He appears bound for the Yankees or Red Sox, which should surprise no one.

Moving on to the 2015 draft. The Phillies are set to pick 10th, which should again mean a borderline elite prospect to add to the system. Its way too early to ponder who will be available at 10 and who the Phillies should take. Given the lack of depth overall in the system, the Phillies should rightly take the best player available, regardless of position, with the possible exception of a shortstop. Brady Aiken, fresh off of getting jerked around by the Astros, is a decent bet to go #1 overall again. I like the looks of Mike Matuella, a RHP from Duke, but I’d bet on him going in the top 5, so I won’t get too involved there. Dansby Swanson, a middle infielder from Vanderbilt, looks very solid and is being projected in the Top 10 right now. Mike Cameron’s son (wow) Daz is also a top 10 prospect as a prep outfielder with great tools. Finally, Phil Bickford, who was taken in the first round in 2013 but didn’t sign. After a rough freshman year, his stuff improved over the summer and he’s transferred to a JuCo so he can re-enter the draft this year. As I said, its too early right now to figure out where guys are lining up, but we’ll re-evaluate as we get closer to the draft.

Keith Law released his Top 100 and team Top 10s last week. He ranked JP Crawford #7 overall and Aaron Nola #57 overall. He’s been a big fan of Crawford from day 1, and he’s all in here. He also notes that Nola is MLB ready. My thought on Nola is that he should probably spend the first few weeks in the minors to start the season, which will delay his free agency by a year. I haven’t looked at the MLB schedule, but teams normally do not need a 5th starter until the 2nd or 3rd week of the season. The Phillies have lots of fringe candidates for the rotation, so there is no need to rush Nola. That said, if he outpitches the other options this spring, there is no real reason for him to waste time in AAA. He was the most advanced pitcher in the 2014 draft, and he’s likely only going to put the finishing touches on his game by facing the best of the best in the majors. If he’s healthy and shows he’s ready this spring, he should be in the rotation by May 1st. Crawford should hopefully start in AA, and if his 2015 looks like his 2014, he’ll force his way to AAA.

That’s all for this week. Until the next one…

173 thoughts on “Sunday notes: Moncada, draft, and other stuff

  1. When you said you were going to talk about Law’s list I thought for sure you’d be covering his leaving Franco off of the top 100. I don’t take terrible exception to it as others seem to, but I would be curious about your thoughts on the matter if you have time.

    1. I am surprised to see Franco out of the top 100. I thought he had a pretty good 2014 and figured he was on the MLB doorstep. Did not see any real backside from Franco to merit that drop in ranking. Oh well, hope he proves Law wrong.

      1. Law has always been down on his defense, IIRC. Franco loses a LOT of his value if you project him as a 1B.

        1. Law has always been down on his offense and defense. He doesn’t think he’s a 3b and thinks his offense won’t translate at the MLB level. I can understand why he’d leave Franco off his top 100 if he feels that way. I disagree, but understand.

  2. I believe MLB will declare Moncada open bidding in a few weeks.
    Seems I read somwhere, tthat here are two team ineligible to give him the bonus he may desire.
    They were penalized for going over the international allocation monies.
    The only team I can think of you busted it the last few years are the Yankees , Cubs, Rangers and Sox.
    So two of them are out of the picture until after July since they are limited to the $300K threshold..

    1. Baseball teams for the most part, reach handshake agreements with the next crop of international free agents in advance of the July 2nd signing period. I assume any club who signs Moncada will not be able to sign an international player for over $300K, which would force many teams to rescind existing agreements. The Yankees, Red Sox, Rays, and Angels have exceeded their budgets during the current signing period, meaning they will be penalized during the next two periods. And I think if there truly are only two more years before a draft is implemented, then teams have an interesting “strategic choice.” Maybe up to a half-dozen pending the outcome of the Yoan Moncada bidding – will be handicapped. My guess more will spend heavily in 2015, making themselves ineligible for big signings in 2016. If enough teams are aggressive, it could be advantageous to wait until 2016 for a spending spree. The penalized teams are mostly those who usually spend a lot on international talent. If there are no more delays in the international draft, then the Phillies should strike now for the opportunity to sign Moncada.

      1. Do people think that signing restrictions would not apply to a draft? It seems to me that penalties would carry over, and could be more severe than they are now.

        1. I can only assume that any draft that MLB works up, will be slotted depending on the numbered pick.
          If there is a carry-over penalty, then I guess the team may lose a draft pick.
          How else can you penalize a team when there is a draft in place?
          Additionally, the Rule 4 went from 50 to 40 rounds in 2012, so the pool of amateurs is fairly large. well over 1000.
          I do not see the international draft being that large…maybe 3/4 rounds.
          Unless they are combined

          1. Everything I’ve seen is that an international draft would stand on its own. If a similar penalty would carry over, where signings could not exceed 300K, then a team would probably forfeit at least the first two rounds. I don’t think a draft would be more than 3 or 4 rounds either, but I don’t know how many 300K players would be available to be signed after a draft. Without knowing The penalty, I don’t know why there would be a land grab of players before a draft.

      2. I agree sign Moncada. So what I am supposed to have hesitations about signing this guy, because it means the phillies cant sign anyone the next year, big friggin deal, It seems like they only make one medium splash per year anyway in the international market like, Pujols, Encarnacion

  3. What’s the difference between the Phillies system & the Cubs’ system? One super-prospect, Kris Bryant. The Phils actually have more pitching prospects than the Cubbies. Now Imagine Moncada, JP and Nola. That’s arguably as good as any team’s Best Three, including the Cubs. Discuss, people.

    1. There’s a HUGE difference . . The Cubs have Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Jorge Soler, Albert Almora, CJ Edwards (all top 60 guys) plus 2014 4th overall pick Kyle Schwarber. After those top 100 they have Pierce Johnson, Eloy Jimenez and Gleyber Torres who could all eventually crack the back end of the top 100.

      1. I see your point sir. Just saying one more blue-chipper (Moncada) along with JP and Nola, and the Phillies are a top-10 system.

        1. Not sure I agree with that conclusion (in fact, I know I don’t). And I sure don’t agree with the premise that the only difference the Phillies system and the Cubs system is Kris Bryant. You are making some huge leaps …

        2. Top 10 system. What a joke . We are the bottom of all bottom feeders. We have 3 players at best that some other teams would want.

  4. I find it interesting that people think Nola is MLB ready now.

    I would prefer to see the Phillies start him in AA, see how he adjusts to hitters and how hitters adjust to him, before moving him up to AAA where the process begins again.

    He may spend a whole year in the minors but I don’t want to rush him. It would be nice to see him force their hand.

    1. KLaw’s assessment on two outstanding Phillies prospects puzzle me.
      1. Nola being MLB ready now and could make the team out of ST
      2. Franco’s and his slide down the scale of prospects noting ‘hitting nothing more then going for power’

      1. Here’s what KLaw said in his chat last week: “Concerned he’ll have to play first – has the hands and arm for third, but feet are slow. Also concerned his pitch recognition is awful and that his swing is too geared for power. Might be an average regular, but I don’t see a star upside there.”

        1. I think he’s concerned about the right things but a little too much in the case of his range, at least in the near term

          1. Simply amazing….KLaw is more knowledgeable and astute at judging talent, more so then the coaches in the Eastern League(2013) and the International League (2014). Their take on Franco as a third basemen was plus defensively.

            1. Well look, if he has even average range then he’s at least an above average defender certainly. But without a much larger sample size it’s really just an eye test evaluation where reasonable minds can probably differ. He looked to me to at least have adequate range

    2. I agree that Nola is MLB ready now. However, there is a difference between MLB ready and nothing left to learn in the minors. Pitchers, more than hitters, have more to gain by continuing to advance in the minors, even if they are “MLB ready”, especially if they have plus make up, since pitchers dictate the AB’s.

  5. Ok …im not sure about the rules so Im thinking outside the box here…Lets say Moncada get 40 mil then we pay a 40 mil penalty…could they sign him for $1 mil/1yr deal then sign him to another deal for $50 mil…Moncada is happy cause he gets an extra $10 mil and Phils are happy cause it only cost $52 mil…obviously MLB and rest of leagie is pissed BUT…

    1. 2 issues with that, 1 should Moncada get injured or perform poorly, he’ll be unable to sign a deal as good as a single 40 mil deal. and 2, I don’t think a team can agree to a second contract beginning a year in advance though legally their is nothing wrong with that, I’m 99% sure MLB has rules against this.

    2. The league has to approve all deals and that wouldn’t go through. they would see through the obvious smoke screen

    3. Anything with Moncada is all signing bonus. It will be a normal run of the mill minor league deal like every draftee or July 2 signing, except the bonus will be insane. When the Phillies paid Chooch $8,000 to sign out of Panama, he showed up and made normally slotted money through the minors, then the league minimum until arbitration etc etc. Moncada would go through the same pay/contract structure, just with $30-$40 million instead of $8,000 upon arrival. If the Phillies were to sign him, then put him in the minors for two years until the team is ready to compete again, they’ll get a lot of reasonably priced years out him even considering the initial investment. Or he’s a total bust. Any team that buys him would be stupid to play him early.

  6. James, It is great to have you back. I don’t think there is an organization in more need of a young great talent like Moncada, that can, at the same time, afford to take the risk. But, like we have discussed about the new structure of the Phils’ management, I do not believe anything has changed. I still think they won’t break the “rules”, and I would love Middleton to prove me wrong. I would go after him 100%, but I believe the chances they get him are less than 10%

  7. KLaw has his picks and MLB have their picks (Sickels has his picks too). MLB took Franco 55, Nola 37, and JP at 21, I recall. Interestingly, MLB voted Nola to have the best command of all the pitchers on their top 100 list. He was also an honorable mention for his change up. The different opinions on Franco of 55 vs not in top 100 at all is interesting surely.

    These pickers are like weathermen. How accurate should you have to be to retain your job? The football guys with their mock drafts aren’t usually close either…

    1. It’s not mysterious though. Most of the disagreement over Franco is regarding whether he can play third base. The people ranking him in the top 100 believe that he can play third (I agree); Law doesn’t think he can. OTOH no one is saying that he’s a good enough hitter to be a top prospect as a first baseman.

  8. Any sense on how far Moncada is from the majors? $80 mil is a lot to pay for a kid who isn’t going to crack the majors for a few year and still needs to develop. On the other hand, if he is MLB ready now, as a 19 year old, that is pretty interesting.

    1. It would be fine for the Phillies if he spent a year or two in the minors. The Phillies will stink with or without him in 2015 and be merely poor in 2016, so why waste a year or two of team control to have him on crap teams.

      1. Interesting, I wonder if he could become the first player to go to arbitration and take a pay cut from his rookie salary deal

      2. You missed my point. If he is 2 years away then he needs a lot of development thus his risk is higher. If he is deemed MLB ready, then his risk is lower. It’s not about arb clock. It is about risk mitigation.

  9. $40-50 million ($80-100 after tax) is too much to pay for an unproven talent.

    Would anyone pay that much for a kid out of high school?

    I think this is the agent trying to create a bidding war and in the end his signing bonus will be closer to $10 million.

    1. He is said to be just about major league ready and is a “franchise changing player”, he will 110% get over 10m signing bonus and IMHO it’s going to be over 30m at least. I’ve yet to hear any negative about him (except that he will cost a lot of money haha)

      1. My doubts stem from hearing that Tomas was the last great Cuban player and then a month later Moncada is this franchise changing player.

        Does not pass the smell test for me since he was out of Cuba and in Guatemala in October.

        I think he has potential but remember that agents pay sites to write positive articles and glowing reports. The fact that there are no negatives sends up red flags.

        I highly doubt anyone commits $80-100 million (after penalty) on an unproven player who may or may not be MLB ready no matter what the hype.

        1. He was always better than Tomas. He was the franchise changing when Tomas was being negotiated. You were just not paying attention.

      2. Here is where I question the articles being put out on Moncada. Everything is said.

        You do some digging and people say that he has power yet the stats I found have four home runs over two seasons. Not that powerful to me. I don’t see any information on at bats to cover the .273 average so it makes the numbers difficult to comprehend.

        Now if you go all in on Moncada it leaves you out of the Hector Olivera and Andy Ibanez sweepstakes. How long until they are the next new stars?

        1. You have a point…how many more 14/15-year old Yoan Moncadas are currently playing in Cuba?
          However, since the draft seems to be inevitable in two years, where all clubs got an equal draft shot at all LA/inter players, then getting the latest Yoan Moncada is imperative now.

    1. Anybody have an idea what KLaw/Callis say and rate the Cubans?
      Moncada, Herrera, Fernandez, Ibanez and Oliviera.

  10. I do not pretend to know whether Moncada will be good or not. But, it is easy to talk yourself out of taking any risks. Puig was really good. The same with Abreu.I would love to have both of them. You have to trust your scouts. But the issue of $ should not make a difference. The Phils can afford the risk. It is a moot point, however, as I do not think they are any more inclined to spend the money on him, than they have been before. Without spending $, how is this team ever going to contend again? Does anyone believe in the scouting/player development skills that this organization has?

      1. I agree that they spend, spent and will spend. The issue is how and where they will spend. They have not yet been big players in the International market and it has cost them. I believe they are more open minded about it now, but I think there’s a LOT of instutional resistance to spending big money on so-called unproven players. Hopefully, when they find the right player, Gillick will push hard as heck to make it happen and it will.

            1. Right, so you get one big prospect/player and that is all so you had better make it count.

              I still have my doubts that he signs for anywhere near a $40-50 million signing bonus There are not that many clubs that can or will write that large of a check for an unproven player.

            2. You can also get all the prospects this year and go way over the limit, getting 3 years worth of prospects in 2 years (this year and the wasted year). And if they go to a draft next year, even better, we get 3 years of prospects in 1 year.

              Of course it’s easy to spend someone else’s money, and those 3 years worth of prospects would come at the price of 6 years, but I still think it’s worth it to get cheap arbitration years out of some of these investments.

          1. If there is a draft in the next couple years we will certainly be near or at the top of it. And if we have gone over before then, that pick will probably be lost.

            1. That’s another issue on the international draft…..MLB still hasn’t decided what will determine the draft order of selection…..whether to go with the same as the Rule 4 based on prior W-L records or perhaps a lottery.
              The chief opposition to the draft in the past was the Latin American MLB players, and agents or the buscones, so they may also want to limit the total rounds.

            2. I may be wrong here but another potential problem with the International Draft is that each team spends different amounts and run different camps. It would be hard to consolidate everything under one umbrella when the big spending clubs take offense to the low spending clubs get an advantage.

            3. Didn’t realize it until recently…but Japanese teams also run academies in the DR and Ven.
              So if the kids do not like the draft slotted monies then they pass MLB and go to highest bidder….perhaps to the Nippon League.

        1. Agree with you in the Wild West days in Latin America but there really has only been a handful of Cubans/Asians in the past few years and we know they were at least interested in some.

        2. 34 YEARS

          JIM THOME and CLIFF LEE

          That’s it for this ownership group.

          Number of Japanese or Korean professional players signed out of their countries?


          Number of times the Phillies have paid the largest signing bonus during a July 2nd signing period?


          Add up the Phillies five highest paid signing bonuses and you aren’t sniffing the five million Texas paid Nomar Mazara to sign.

          The Phillies have NEVER SPENT on the open markets.


          The Phillies BOYCOTT the open markets and fight a war on Scott Boras.

          Number of Scott Boras clients signed by the Phillies?


            1. PS…March 2001, two Korean pitchers were signed
              Pacific Rim scouting director Doug Takaragawa finalized the contracts with a pair of South Korean righthanders, Seung Lee and Il Kim, in Seoul The two received a total of $2 million in signing bonuses.
              They went sour and the Phillies then panicked for a decade and went gun-shy.

            2. Those two Korean pitchers were July 2nd signings. One received $800,000 and the other $1.2 million.

              That $1.2 million bonus from 2001 still stands as the highest signing bonus ever paid by the Phillies for a July 2nd signing.

              14 years ago.

      2. But it has been an issue, because when there was no slotting system, they could have helped the farm by adding talent that way. They could have spent on the International markets. They could have added a young star between 2008 and 2015. The last 3 years may have only been 1 year, and the next 3 years may not have to be lousy. Just being happy they spent at the Major League level lets them off the hook. There is no justification for how they managed this team when they had a financial advantage.

        1. Yankees spent approx. $14M in one year…..last year on LA talent .
          I do not think the Phillies ever spent that much totally over the last 10 years

    1. Huh? Moncada can be our 2B. I’m not even sure I’d say that 2B is where we are particularly weak. We are loaded with SS in the lower minors, in addition to Crawford who actually will be our starting SS, so one of those 3 expensive LA SS we gave the 2014 bonus pool money to is going to be our 2B if Valentin isn’t. Yes, catcher is a weakness, although we have Grullon and maybe Knapp. Our greatest weakness is the lack of solid OF prospects.

      1. Agreed, don’t forget Pullin as a possible answer at 2B also. Our biggest need is for a #3 hitting OF. They’re hard to find but we have no one like that in our system. I was hoping that Hamels could bring it but that’s not likely now.

    2. We will wait forever and get no one as usual. The Phils need to take a chance, can’t continue as per our normal. I need to see management take a deep plunge into these Cubans. We will wait 2-3 yrs and then start giving away our draft pcks for 32 yr old veterans. That is our comfort zone.

      1. It takes patience, but I’d sooner see a plunge on the 2015 international crop — doing what the big spenders did this season in breaking allocation, not for one guy but for multiple big ticket guys. P.S. — I can’t really see Moncada going as high as $40 million plus $40 million penalty.

        1. That’s the same as saying you would rather have five first round draft picks than Bryce Harper.

          If that’s true then you should go find a football board.

  11. Lower minors do not mean much to me. Guys look great at A and below only to stumble at AA. I have always put less stock in the guys at the bottom of the farm system.

    For me, you have to earn your way onto the list and not project too much for guys at the A level and below.

    OF are easier to find and I think we will be focusing our efforts in those areas come draft day. Cameron would go a long way to making our OF situation on the farm much more attractive.

    1. I’ll certainly agree that finding OF in the draft and international market certainly shouldn’t be nearly as difficult as the Phillies make it look. The wasted $ and primo draft picks is just staggering and that’s all down to bad scouting. When you pick HS kids in the first two rounds you’ll have misses, but there also ought to be some serious hits. The best we’ve got is Dugan, then you go back to Domonic Brown and the collegian Bourn. Brown and Bourn were not 1st-2nd rounders, showing the team actually has done better on the low cost, later round picks. Then you go back to Burrell and the unsigned Drew, both collegians, to find an impactful OF drafted by the Phillies, and that includes Hewitt, who was drafted as IF but quickly moved to OF.

      1. Golson, Savory, Greene, Hewitt.

        All agreed to pre-draft SLOT MONEY bonuses.

        David Montgomery destroyed the Phillies farm system by fighting a war on Scott Boras and fighting to uphold the slotting system.

        The Red Sox did the exact opposite.

        1. Fighting the draft slot bonus crusade is certainly a part of the problem, but it goes beyond that. There were major league OFs signed for slot and signed in later rounds. The Phillies scouted poorly. They have a long history of doing badly in identifying good OF prospects.

  12. Been busy lately. Quick comment on the issue of “prospects are risky.”

    Of course they are. Pitchers especially so. But I think there’s a tendency here to overstate this in some cases, basically by failing to make distinctions. Some prospects are riskier than others. Obvious, right? No one here would likely disagree with that. But in practice people around here seem to, at least to some extent.

    How to distinguish between the high risk and low risk prospects? It’s hard for the typical fan to do so – which is why relying upon scouting reports is so important. For players with a minor league track record, though, there are some guidelines. Low K rate/high BB rate/holding one’s own despite being young for a league/defensive value. Players who tick off all of these boxes – there aren’t many – are relatively low risk. Even if below AA. See, e.g., Crawford. Good scouting reports matter here also.

    Now Moncada. Of course in his case, we don’t HAVE minor league numbers. But the scouting reports are quite glowing – much more so than for ANY Cuban player in recent memory. IF we believe the scouts, this guy really is something. High ceiling and relatively low risk.

    It’s a moot point. The Phillies aren’t signing him, and I’m less likely to blame them for that decision than other missteps over the years. But the team that gets him – even if they pay $80 million (40 plus 40) for him – is making a wise choice.

    1. You’re absolutely and completely correct. First batting columns I look at on the box scores are BB’s and K’s. That is where I think prospects can show you the greatest evidence of improvement. I leave everything else up to the scouts!

    2. Riskiness is ultimately priced into the money paid to sign players (.e.g.: for two equally talented players, the one with less volitility/riskiness will sign for more.).

      I agree it is a moot point, the phillies are unlikely to sign him.

      It is also debate able whether they should at the total 80 million price tag mentioned. If Moncada was worth an excess 20 million a year above what he was paid each year upon hitting the majors, it would take a good 5 to 6 years to reap any returns above the 80 million investment. This is because, the excess return when accruing in the future and needs to be compared in net present value terms to the signing bonus.

  13. I would love to be in the room when a GM pitches ownership on spending $80-100 million for Moncada. That has to be a tough sell when you lay out the bonus and penalties.

    I like what I hear about Moncada but not enough to love spending that much money on him. To sign him from my POV is knowing your pipeline. The Cuban guys coming up and the LA players you want to sign. You have to love him so much that you are willing to almost scrap your pipeline if what I am reading is correct.

    I think his flaws will come out and numbers down.

    I remember being on the Tomas bandwagon and how we just had to get him at all costs but then his flaws came out and I started to wonder if it would be worth it in the end.

    Now I think about flaws and pipeline first rather than must have.

    1. I don’t think you’re irrational on this, just wrong. Agree that it is a tough sell to ownership – especially to conservative owners who like to support the commissioner.

      As for the pipeline, some truth to that, but I’ll turn around your “prospects are risky” comment. 16 year old overseas players are particularly risky. I’m not sure how much you lose forgoing the expensive (over 300K) 16 year olds and instead signing a bunch of 300K 16 year olds, which you can still do even if you sign Moncada. The Phillies in particular have a good track record with (relatively) cheap overseas kids.

      1. ‘The Phillies in particular have a good track record with (relatively) cheap overseas kids.’…I tend to agree with that monetary caveat, otherwise their track record compared to other large market teams…Rangers, NYY, Bosox, LAD, LAA, CWS and even Atlanta…. is poor.

        1. Romus I don’t have the answer but since 2000 What latin players have they signed to help them????? who are the great signs. I Think of only ruiz and bastardo and bastardo wasn’t a great or even good player imo.

          1. Carlos Silva (signed 1996), Robinson Tejada, Freddy G, Cesar Hernandez…these are some of the ones who had some sort of an impact.
            Not too impressive.

      2. Thanks for the constructive criticism. I am trying to wrap my head around all of the changes going on regarding Cuba and baseball.

        With the embargo ending it will be interesting to see how this changes MLB and potentially sets the stage for an international draft.

        Some of the articles are very well written and fascinating reads.

        Olivera and Ibanez will be next and nobody has heard from Herrera and Fernandez.

      3. And the $300,000 is the official price. If the Phillies really wanted someone during this period – and their not wanting these players is the problem – there are many ways to increase the signing bonus under the table.

    2. You may dispute any numbers you like and provide your own, with reasoning to back them up, but the following are what I think are fair estimates:

      25% chance of being a star
      50% chance of being average
      25% chance of being nothing

      To replace that level of production, you would have to pay a FA:
      30 mill over 6 years (edited upward to account for paying a player past his prime) for a star
      10 mill over 6 years for an average player

      So equivalently:
      25% * 30 * 6 = 45
      50% * 10 * 6 = 30
      45+30 = 75

      If Moncada is a star, then he would likely command 30 mill over his arbitration period, and 10 mill if average.
      25% * 30 + 50% * 10 = 12.5

      75 – 12.5 = 62.5

      That is an approximation of the break even amount for total money spent (including tax).

      I expect Moncada to sign for less than 30 million because few teams would go that high on one player with the exorbitant tax. I think the 40 million number is wishful thinking and posturing from the agent; when have we seen a LA player get as much as they predicted?

      1. Based on scouting graded, scales 20-80, he is a 5-tool 60 across the board.
        More then likely a top 5 Rule 4 pick.
        Why not just percentage grade out all top 5 picks in the last decade?

      2. I agree he doesn’t get $40 mill. Selig has been a complete and total fool on the whole Cuban and international mess. Remember back when future Phillie Travis Lee and 3 other guys were drafted by teams which didn’t follow the written MLB rules on tendering a proposed contract to a draftee? The four were declared FA and signed for sums shattering what drafted players of comparable ability were getting. It proved that under a free market, the best high school and college players would get much larger bonuses than the MLB draft guidelines provided. Let’s say Moncada gets only $20 million plus the penalty. That means that in a free market teams are willing to pay close to 10 times what the hard draft caps allow the top draftees to get as a bonus. Baseball gets a BIG black eye on this and it likely comes back in the next contract with the players or a weakening of baseball’s anti-trust exemption. What could possibly be more anti-American? A Cuban kid gets a bonus 5 to 10 times what a comparable American kid can receive. Moncada hasn’t been the only out of line bonus this year. Stack up what will be this year’s top international bonuses against the top 5 draft bonuses. It is kind of shocking. There will be serious repercussions coming from this. It could have as big an impact on how baseball handles amateur talent as the Richie Allen trade had on the reserve clause.

        1. First of all, almost everything in America is anti-American anymore. But that aside, the only way for the kids to get their fair value is that everyone (amateurs foreign and domestic) go into a free market bidding system. That is never going to happen.

          When drafts are instituted, as the international markets soon will, it lowers the price on talent because only one team can bid on their talents that year, and if they don’t like what they’re getting, they can go back into the pool only to be drafted by another single team the next year and go back to being bid on by one team. And you’d better sign before you’re a senior, or you’re gonna get 10K.

          Sure baseball sees foreign players getting more than nationals as a problem, but they don’t want anyone to get free market value. They will remedy by instituting a draft for international players as well.

          Just imagine a draft for free agents. What would that do for salaries?

    3. Did he really have all those flaws or was this a case of the Phillies hadn’t cleared salary, still had an unsettled management/ownership structure and couldn’t bring themselves to spend the money. Except for MAG, the Phillies always seem to make a point of being ‘in’ on the Cubans, then it never happens, actually doesn’t come close to happening, as in the team doesn’t even make as offer, as was the case with the last two Cubans we were supposedly very interested in. The Phillies are long on excuses and short on action.

      1. Agree 100%.
        Sadly Phillies seem to be all talk when it comes to the Cubans (sans MAG at a reduced injury price) and other 16-year old LA amateur talent.
        The Giles ‘small’market’ mentality pervades and until his regime is out of there it goes on.
        The Yankees, Sox, LAD, CWS, CCubs, Rangers, Braves spend on the unproven LA talent…the Phillies try to go cheap with Sal Agostinelli trying to scout and sign under an austere budget.
        Think about it, the total of Santana, Tocci, Encarnacion, Grullon, Pujols, Gamboa Brito and Jhon Nunez’ total signing bonus’ from 2011 to 2014, and it still doesn’t equal the Yankees of 2014, or the Cubs of 2013 or the Rangers of 2012.
        Very poor excuse for a team in a market as large as Philadelphia……and with only one team, no one else to compete for fans support or dollars like New York, Chicago, Los Angeles or even the Bay Area.
        The Philly media…..electronic and print need to come out and continually expose this nonsense until ownership retaliates back.

  14. I cannot dispute your numbers or your theory. My question for you is whether you think the Phils are in on him even at $30 Million? Because I do not. I don’t believe they incur the penalty from the league regardless of their view on upcoming plus 300K overseas players. I think they do not step out from what the Commissioner’s office wants. I know I have said this before, but that attitude has always bothered me. And, I think is a major reason the team is where it is today.

    1. The Phillies aren’t in on him — period. Unlike the last two Cubans, I don’t think they’ve even made much pretence of being in on him.

  15. Moncada eligible to sign as of tonight. Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers are the favorites per the oddsmakers. Phils not listed

    1. Supposedly he is doing a second round of workouts in the next couple of weeks.

      Not sure who he will be visiting but it looks like they will be timed around the opening of Spring Training camps so everyone can poke and prod.

  16. All this over a player the phillies have no interest in. Yes I would to have him I think the phillies will go big this in the Latin market this yr. Maybe they don’t want to get in any penalty that would hurt the for the future.the phillies now have the Braves best Latin American scout as running our scouting department. They also have Sal so maybe there going big this yr in Latin America. I want the philles to sign international players as bad as anyone else but there not in on anyone at this time.

    1. The Braves farm stinks. Julio Tehran is the only success the Braves have internationally.

      The Rangers and Red Sox are where you find the top international scouting departments.

      You also find unlimited spending there and friendly relationships with Scott Boras.

      Not so with the Braves.

      Why am I a lone voice ( or close to it) in pointing out what the Phillies ownership group is all about?

      They are the “42” group.


      1. What about the pitcher Randall the Braves traded?
        Or Elvis Andrus in the trade to the Rnagers?
        They used LA talent as trade chips….like the Phllies did with Carlos carrasco, who could very well be a success with the Indians.

  17. Can someone verify for me the issue of Boston and the Yankees having to wait until June to sign Moncada or the penalty is huge. A team like the Phils would have an advantage. I still believe they do not go after him, but I wanted to understand the Boston/NY issue.

    1. I believe they incurred a penalty for their breaking their allotment for inter monies…Yankees in 2014 for sure with close to $14M..thery signed 10/12 of the top 30 LA prospects. Not sure on the Sox…could have been the combo of Devers/Castillo signing . The Cubs in 2013 also over-spent and were penalized.
      But the $300K threshold still applies to all clubs.
      It is complicating for sure.

    2. The Yankees, Red Sox and Rays ___cannot___ wait past June 15th. After that date they can’t pay more than $300,000.

      After June 15th the Rangers and Cubs are back in play.

      Who cares?

      If the Phillies want Moncada no other team can stop them.

      The problem is they do not want Moncada.

      The Phillies have been at war with Scott Boras openly since 1997. Unkless you are too stupid to be executed you know they will never cut a check for Jay Z who seems to be the Cuban players favorite agent, with Boras a second choice.


      Ben Chapman is the President and CEO of the Phillies.

    3. The Yankees, Red Sox, and Rays all spent more than their allotments for the current signing period (that runs through June of this year). So basically, they have nothing to lose by signing Moncada right now because they won’t be able to go over $300k for any player for two years starting this July.

      The Cubs and Rangers currently can’t sign any player for over $300k because they overspent their allotment last signing period (before the rule changed to 2 years). So, they can’t offer Moncada more than $300k, unless he’s willing to wait until July to sign.

      1. And the tax is the same for any team that signs him. It’s a dollar for dollar penalty on the amount that the team has exceed its international bonus pool for the year. The Phillies bonus pool for the current signing period is roughly $3.2M. I believe they’ve only spent about $1.5M of that. So, say they sign Moncada (they won’t) for $40M, they’d pay a penalty of roughly $38M on top of that.

          1. Sorry, you are right. I thought I had read somewhere that only bonuses exceeding $600,000 count against the bonus pool, but now I can’t seem to find that anywhere…

  18. I have been on the fence about Moncada, but think it is a move the Phillies have to make. We are a large market team and it is time to be aggressive and sign him.

    My concern about signing him was limiting ourselves to other LA signings. I wasn’t quite sure if I was comfortable signing one prospect when we could potentially bring in several prospects from LA if we avoid the penalty. After looking into Moncada and trying to become more familiar it the international signing rules, I can’t see turning a potential star down for a handful of lottery tickets.

    It takes years for these teenage LA kids to develop and we need to add talent to the upper levels of our system. Signing a group of 16 year olds does not really help our rebuild. We are currently establishing a good farm system right now, but lack elite prospects. Signing Moncada immediately gives us one of the top prospects in the game. He should be ready after a year or two in the minors. He would be a core player to build around and would helps us get back to contention.

    The 16yo kids we will probably sign instead of Moncada will probably be in the GCL or A ball in 2 years if we are lucky. We do not need any more Galvis/Hernandez type players. We need a star to turn this team around and Moncada could easily be that guy. He grades as above average in every category and would give us a legitimate 5-tool player we desperately need.

    If we sign Moncada we’d still have guys like Gamboa, Encarnacion, Pujols and some of the pitchers we’ve signed coming up through the system. If you add Moncada and prospects acquired for Hamels and Pap to our farm we could easily be pushing into the top 5 farms in all of baseball. Combine that with money to spend in free agency and things could turn around in Philly rather quickly.

    1. The Phillies have to be careful about who they sign as we finally are making good progress in Latin America and you don’t want to stop that pipeline ever again. Most of the talented Latin players will command over $300K and you don’t want to lose that unless the player is exceptional.

      1. Even with the progress the Phillies have made in Latin America, the system continues to lack premium talent. You don’t win without superstars. That’s why they need to make a run at Moncada. A core of Moncada, Crawford, and Franco (and maybe Swihart — I know I’m dreaming) gives me hope for the future. The Phillies have signed a lot of mid-level LA talent (Pujols/Grullon/Encarnacion/Gamboa, etc.), but these guys are all 5+ years away from contributing and none of them project to be stars. I trust Sal to continue to be able to identify kids that other teams overlook that the Phils can sign for $300k or less over the next two years while they have to sit out of the annual spending bonanza. I know it’s not happening, but boy I wish it would…

    2. Totally agree. Plus, the Phils have actually done fairly well with their lower priced signings. So you sign Moncada and trust Sal Agostinelli’s scouting for two years and sign a bunch of $100-$300k kids with talent and warts (like Maikel Franco). Imagine an opening day infield in 2016 consisting of Franco 3B, Crawford SS, Moncada 2B, and Utley (?) 1B. While I’m dreaming, say they finally are able to pry Swihart from the Sox to be our catcher of the future. Future is suddenly bright.

      1. Between 2001 and 2011 how many of these low price signings have materialized into adequate MLB players?
        Chooch…..and maybe Carlos Carassco for the Indians.
        I do not see the likes of Carlos Silva, Robinson Tejeda, Freddy G and even Cesar Hernandez being the impact players that they hoped they would be.
        Jury is still out on the Toccis, Encarnacions, Grullons, Pujols, Gamboa, Brito, Tromp, Hiciano et al and even the Astros Santana.
        Now, to be honest, there have been a share of million dollar LAs players signed by other teams that have not panned out well, ie Jesus Montero so far for one..

        1. Even the high priced players are more likely to flame out than to succeed. That’s why I’d want to go after the closest thing there is to a sure thing, assuming the scouting reports can be trusted. Sign Moncada, continue to take shots with lower priced free agents for two years, then get back to the program.

          1. Here is a breakdown of the big spenders in the international arena…mostly LA markets in the last few years:
            2010-2011- Mariners, Yankees, Astros, Pirates, Athletics
            2011-2012 -Rangers, Blue Jays, Royals, Mariners, Cubs
            2012-2013- Rangers, Cubs, Dodgers, Indians, Red Sox
            2013-2014- Rangers, Yankees, Red Sox

            …as usual the Rangers, Yankees and Cubs seem to the ones trying to get ahead of the field and stay there.

        2. Look, I just want a prospect to dream on in the system. Cole Hamels was the last such prospect they had, and that was some time ago.

          1. Well you probably could trade Cole and Chooch both to the Sox for Vasquez, Owens, Devers and Margot.
            Then you could have a lot of dreamin’ going on

    3. Encarnacion wasn’t even 16 on July 2. He played in GCL this season at age 16. Most of our high bonus LA signings play in GCL at age 16 or 17.

      1. True, but they are going to be repeating levels in the low minors because of their age and raw abilities. They are just going to take a while to reach the majors if they make it. Moncada would maybe spend a year or two in the upper levels of the minors to refine his skills.

        The main point is that Moncada would take 1-2 years to reach the bigs. Any young teenagers we sign could take 5 or more years to reach the majors.

    1. Depending on how the contract is structured (duration) and depending on how good he becomes, maybe he is. More than anything, however, he costs them only the resource/asset which they have in abundance – future cash flow. If he turns out to be a 4-6 WAR player, they sign him for 6 years and he gets to the majors in two years, he sure as heck would be worth it.

      1. He’s an amateur free agent. There is no way to get creative with the contract. It’s all signing bonus and tax, and then the Phils get to control him as they would any other international free agent or Rule 4 draft pick. Three years to add him to the 40-man roster and then 6 more years of team control (three of which will be arbitration years). Still seems like a worthwhile risk to me.

        1. I’m not talking about getting creative (I realize with the tax the options are limited), I’m talking about how much it will cost over how many years.

          1. There is no creativity here. If you pay him a signing bonus of $40 million there is a dollar for dollar tax minus a million or so.

            It is pretty straightforward.

            For that money there is no room for error. He has to be a superstar to justify the initial outlay.

            1. No, I get that. The question is how long will the contract be. If it’s $80 million total outlay for 7 controlled years and you expect he’ll be in the minors for 2 years but produce an average of 4 WAR a year over the following 5 years, it’s still worth. Well worth it. But he at least has to be above average (first division regular) for this to make any sense.

            2. I guess I’m not understanding where we’re misunderstanding each other. It’s all signing bonus and tax. There is no negotiation of the length of his contract because the team that signs him is just buying his rights — however long it takes for him to develop in the minors until they add him to the 40-man, plus 6 cost controlled years on the 40-man. Just like a draft pick.

            3. My point is a 20 WAR over 5 years is a huge projection. For $80 million you are banking on him essentially tearing apart the minors and going straight to All Star status.

              That leads me to be very hesitant. The assumption is 100% superstar and no downside.

            4. Well, I mean we know the Phillies don’t put any stock in WAR. The money they spend on Moncada doesn’t count against luxury tax payroll limits, so let’s just call it a sunk cost. His annual salary is all that would factor in for luxury tax purposes. Assuming the Phillies are willing to pay it (big if), why would you be against it?

            5. G$ gets the main point – the money doesn’t count against the luxury tax threshold.

              Even that aside, some of you guys are a bit off in terms of how much a WAR is worth. It’s something like 6 million now, and will be higher going forward. Also keep in mind that the FA clock doesn’t start ticking till he makes the majors. Of course OTOH you also need to consider the fact that he’ll be getting a salary, so 80 million wouldn’t be the full cost. Still, even setting aside G$’s very salient point, he doesn’t have to become a superstar or even a star to justify the bonus. 3 WAR a year would more than justify the bonus over the course of his pre-FA years. And that may well be his floor. (I’m using floor the same way we use ceiling, i.e., not the absolute worst possible outcome – there’s some (low) chance for a complete flame out – but the lowest likely outcome.)

              Again, a moot point. A conservative outfit like the Phillies is not going to take the risk, and it’s clear from reports that they aren’t serious suitors (if they are suitors at all).

    2. If I were Ruben, and noted for cheapness on unpoiven talent, and not planning on signing Moncada anyways, then I would put a relatively modest to high bid, knowing it could be trumped by a Yankee or Sox team.
      Let them fork up the higher money and pay the penalty.

      1. I highly doubt the Phillies are in on Moncada, for one thing, they have not had him in for a work out. Even if they were trying to down play their interest, they would have to take a closer look at someone who could cost 60-80 Mil. The Phillies have a long standing adversion to “dead money”. That’s why they have not ever gone over the Cap Amount for Major League salaries. They will not pay a penalty like what is indicated. Because their farm system lacks depth, I think they will not be inclined to commit so much money to one “Prospect”, their MO has always been to invest moderate money in many players, “hedging their bets” I have mixed emotions about going for him, so I can see their point of view. Needless to say I could be dead wrong, but if I was, it would prove what Rollins said was true. That Middleton wants to be “Steinbrenner South”

    3. What makes you say that?

      Here is one set of scouting grades on him.

      Hit — 60
      Power — 60
      Speed — 70
      Arm — 60
      Field — 50

      He is a switch hitter who can do it all and is in great shape.

      I think it is important to remember that many people thought Tomas would land 100 or so mil, but he signed for 68.5/6yrs. Moncada may sign for closer to 30 like someone else mentioned.

      The production and excitement he would bring to the bank would be well worth the money IMO.

      1. I question the grades (power) since there is a lack of stats and what we do have indicates he hit four home runs over a two year period.

        If you were drafting a kid with power out of high school you would expect more home runs.

          1. Yes, he played in the Cuban National Series in 2012 and 2013. He played 101 games there and the average player in that league was over 10.5 years older than him each year.

            This is his slash line from those games .277 .388 .380 .768

            He had 40BB and 69K in 367PA.

        1. His stats on baseball reference are not bad at all considering his age. Yeah it’d be nice to see more power, but his numbers from the 16 and under and 18 and under leagues he played in his numbers apparently align with Puig and Soler.

          I think he has a high floor and a great ceiling. He is so much more athletic than Tomas and would be a great addition to the farm. We didn’t pursue Tomas because of his questionable defense and his physical condition. Moncada is in great shape and is solid defensively with a plus arm. I know its a risk, but the rewards are sky high.

      2. When I see lists like this, I wonder who were the best 5 tool players of all time what would their “80” grade scores be?

        Can you imagine if Willie Mays were a prospect? I think it would read like this

        Power – 65/75
        Hit – 65/70
        Speed – 80
        Arm – 70
        Field – 80

        Honestly, coming out of college, Barry Bonds was not that much different.

        Or how about Hank Aaron?

        Power – 55/70
        Hit – 65/70
        Speed – 65
        Arm – 60
        Field – 60

        Or Babe Ruth?

        Power – 80
        Hit – 75 (yes, he had a 75 hit tool – you don’t hit .342 for your career without it, not even back then)
        Speed – 50/35
        Arm – 75
        Field – 50/40

    1. I hate to be negative, but the takeaway (reading between the lines) I get from his quotes is “sure we would love to have him, but no way we’re going to pay what it will take to get him. Too risky.”

      1. That would be the interp most commonly associated with RAJ. If the kid is “all that”, I sure hope they’re in on him, its just so hard to find that level of talent and we all know that it takes stars to win.

        1. In fairness to RAJ, this (assuming that I am correct) is probably coming from higher up. Though I wouldn’t think that Amaro is a big dissenting voice either.

  19. At this point, it is tough to distinguish between “up top” and RAJ. Monty just said they will need another year or 2 to evaluate Amaro, and admitted that some of the bad contracts, my adjective, are his responsibility. I have always believed that Amaro was ordered to trade Lee when he got Doc. I, in no way, absolve Ruben from the horrible decision making, but I don’t see anyone in the organization making future good ones. I know Gillick is a Hall of Famer, but he is 78 years old, coming out of retirement, and not looking to do this long term. Yet, this a long term project, and they seem to have no interest in shortening the time frame or they would have gotten Tomas and be after Moncada. Drafting # 10 this year and #1 next year does not build a contender. At that rate, 2018 is a pipedream.

  20. Just to put a bit more perspective on the Moncada non-interest, and put forward a defense of sorts to it. Some of this is speculative:

    (1) Despite the above analysis, there IS real risk involved.
    (2) We don’t know everything about the team’s finances. Maybe they are less profitable than people think, and there are meaningful limits to spending aside from the luxury tax. It’s not reasonable to expect teams to operate at a loss.
    (3) This may be the big one … rumor has it that the team is planning to go over the limits next year, AND already has informal deals in place to do so. Thus, the cost of the signing (in terms of players not signed next year, AND lost good will in LA) could be higher than we think.

    I hope #3 is in place. We’ll see.

    1. Trying to rack my brain over #2.
      Then I realized, anything less then their highest past profit margin, is less profitable
      I would hope they have the foresight to see within the next two seasons the beginning installments of the $2.5B Comcast windfall will more then likely make up any current ‘loss’ profits.

  21. I hope so, also. But, on another note, if the rumors are true that the Padres are signing Shields, that takes them out of a Hamels deal. I think that insures that Cole is here until, at least the trade deadline. Maybe the Red Sox or the Dodgers, in the middle of a pennant race, decide that they need him, but unless the Phils take a bad deal, I think we revisit Hamels rumors next off season when there is even more SP on the market. My point is that without at least 1 really good player for Hamels, the Phils rebuild takes even longer to accomplish.

    1. The Phillies could bid up Shields, but that would likely cause bad blood between them and their potential trading partners who are in on him.

  22. Extremely long post (slow day at work) so I’ll give a sentence to what each paragraph is about.
    1 – Moncada power.
    2 – Phillies interest in Mondada.
    3. Phillies being creative in FA.
    4 – Phillies first round pick 2016.

    1. Jose Abreu at age 16 hit 5 HR and 17 hit 4 HR. At 17 Puig hit 5. Just because Moncada hasn’t hit a lot of HR as a 16, 17 or even 18 year old doesn’t mean he won’t in future years, remember you are talking about basically someone’s Sophmore, Junior and Senior years of HIGH SCHOOL.

    2. Also just bc they didn’t have a private workout or don’t have one scheduled doesn’t mean that much. The things you find out at these workouts in some ways can be misleading. Think about it, are you better at hitting BP, taking ground balls (that you know are being hit at you and for the most part know if it’s going to be glove side, backhand or right at you) and timed runs (not game running)? Absolutely. Most of these are to get to know the player more after already knowing a lot about them from scouting games (got this info from my buddy who is the Rays rookie league team hitting coach). The Phillies have scouted Moncada, Manuel said this himself. Personally I think it’s a long shot for us to sign him, as most of you think as well.

    3. There hasn’t been a general discussion thread in 2 weeks so I’ll throw this up here . . . The Phillies front office needs to be creative and try things . . . had a blurb about free agents who have team control left, Brandon Beachy and Dayan Vicideo both have 3 or more years of team control left. Why not see if Beachy can regain what he was a few years ago, if he can then he’s a very good 3 and why not see if Viciedo can be a younger Byrd type bat? A 25-27 year old Marlon Byrd is a VERY GOOD player. Both would be cheap, both if they worked out could either help the rebuild or even be flipped when needed and both if they didn’t work out wouldn’t be a blow financially.

    Since this is about Draft I’ll go out on a limb and tell you who the Phillies 2016 draft pick will be. I’ve mentioned this kid before in the summer (talked to Matt W about him yesterday) and my eye was correct as he committed to Vandy in the early fall. Jason Groome LHP (16 year old Junior) he’s 6’6 listed at 180lbs but that is def off, he’s closer to 200lbs then he is 180lbs. The scouting report is from myself from seeing him in person at 15 yoa . . . The game I saw him throw He was 91-93 and touched 95, a college coach with me said he’s been as high as 97 and usually sits 92-94 (remember this is from the left side). He also throws a slider which was obviously unfair to other 15 year olds. It was a true wipeout slider that he was throwing at 84-85mph. He threw a change up as well but only a few of them so I can’t really comment on those. He had control and command of his fastball and slider. The thing that impressed me the most was how easy he threw his fastball, it was effortless, even his 95 wasn’t max effort. I can see him being in the top 10 next year and honestly if he went 1 I wouldn’t be surprised, also doesn’t hurt for the Phillies that he’s a local kid (Barnegat NJ). One college coach (TCU) who I have a good relationship with who also recruited Brady Akien said that Groome (in his opinion) is the better recruit/pitcher. Would be interesting to know what he would be offered if he was a16 year old player from LA. Remember where you heard it first ; )

        1. Yeah I saw that as well. There were 2 guns on him the game I was at both having him topped out at 95 and sitting 91-93 . . . You can see in the video how effortless he is. Looks like he’s throwing both a curve and a slider in the video . . . The slider was sick in the game I saw. I have a video I took from my iPhone but the fence doesn’t help out much. If he’s seen as Brady Akien or even close he won’t be there at 10 but he’s not eligible until NEXT years draft when the Phillies will sure to be picking in the top 5.

          After I saw him throw I called some of my closer college coaching contacts (Duke, Seton Hall, St. John’s, Stony Brook, Rutgers, Old D., Univ of New Orleans and TCU) every single coach knew about him and said the something “he’ll never step foot on a college campus”.

          It’s actually scary to think that he’s still protectable, that there could be more there.

          On a side note (and I know this is a little bit of a stretch idea) if a high school kid moved down to say DR . . . Would he be an international signing right away? Or would he need to be there for an allotted amount of time? Hell if I was Groomes parents I’d say “let’s move to the DR, grab the signing bonus of at least 20m and be set”. Could that happen (not is it or will it but is it possible under the rules)?

          1. Moving to DR?
            No…its where you are born…he is a US citizen.
            It may work if he theoretically gave up his US citizenship

            1. Ahhh ok I wasn’t 110% sure. Anyways he’s going to have teams drooling. How cool much it to be 16 years olds knowing what your future could hold . . .

  23. After reading this mornings MLBTR about Moncada and clubs hesitancy due to the monies/penalty, ‘•The Dodgers still have legitimate reservations about going after Moncada given the high price’ and ‘•The Giants feel that they are long shots in the Moncada sweepstakes’…..I think the Phillies ought to jump in and put a somewhat low-ball bid, ilo of the projected $40M bonus bid.
    Say neighborhood of $20/25M and see what happens.
    Everyone thought the same about Tomas and his projected 4100M price-tag and the D-Backs got him for a good portion less.

  24. I sure hope the Phillies get Moncada. It will only cost them money – of which they have plenty. The fact that they can’t sign anyone else for for the next two years for more than $300,000 is silly. They don’t get many of them anyway. They have gone with the “quantity vs. quality” theory in the past so they normally don’t spend more than the 300 grand anyway. If this kid works out, they’d have him and JPC together for a long time.

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