Daily Archives: September 2, 2015

The First End of Season Poll

Over the past weekend, Mike Drago of the Reading Eagle published his yearly prospect survey.  Mike requests input from about two dozen industry people who watch or cover a fair amount of games and players among the Phillies’ affiliates.  He received 16 responses and used a weighted scoring system to determine a player’s perceived value (first-place votes earning 20 points, second place 19 points, etc.).   I was one of the 16 respondents.

J.P Crawford received 15 of 16 first place votes.  Jake Thompson received the other first place vote.  Nick Williams received 11 second place votes.  Thirty-four players received votes.  The results of the poll were as follows.

  1. J.P. Crawford                     SS     Reading                    317 points
  2. Jake Thompson                 P     Reading                    287
  3. Nick Williams                    OF    Reading                    278
  4. Cornelius Randolph      OF   Gulf Coast                253
  5. Jorge Alfaro                          C     Reading                    236
  6. Roman Quinn                    OF     Reading                    225
  7. Franklyn Kilome                 P      Williamsport         215
  8. Zach Eflin                                P      Reading                   197
  9. Ricardo Pinto                       P       Clearwater             154
  10. Carlos Tocci                          OF     Clearwater             145
  11. Aaron Altherr                       OF    Philadelphia         144
  12. Andrew Knapp                     C      Reading                   138
  13. Jarad Eickoff                         P      Philadelphia        113
  14. Scott Kingery                      2B      Lakewood             104
  15. Nick Pivetta                           P      Reading                      93
  16. Ben Lively                                P      Reading                      63
  17. Darnell Sweeney              OF     Philadelphia            59
  18. Rhys Hoskins                      1B     Clearwater                36
  19. Alberto Tirado                      P      Clearwater                34
  20. Malquin Canelo                 SS    Lakewood                  29

The next ten were – Matt Imhof, Alec Asher, Brandon Leibrandt, Dylan Cozens, Jimmy Cordero, Kelly Dugan, Jose Pujols, Deivi Grullon, Willians Astudillo, Jesse Biddle.

Four others received votes – Felix Paulino, Jonathan Arauz, Aaron Brown, Lucas Williams. (All four were on my ballot.)

I returned my ballot with the following disclaimer.  “Really tough this season. I haven’t seen enough of half of the guys in the MLB top 20. I relied on what I’ve read and even box scores (shudder) to some extent. My bias toward players I have seen probably works for and against them, but my bias against relievers is probably permanent, for now. Anyway, here goes.”

1. J.P. Crawford
2. Cornelius “C” Randolph
3. Jake Thompson
4. Jorge Alfaro
5. Ricardo Pinto
6. Andrew Knapp
7. Franklyn Kilome
8. Roman Quinn
9. Jerad Eickhoff
10. Nick Williams
11. Zach Eflin
12. Scott Kingery
13. Felix Paulino
14. Darnell Sweeney
15. Nick Pivetta
16. Jonathan Arauz
17. Aaron Brown
18. Dylan Cozens
19. Rhys Hoskins
20. Lucas Williams

I ended with the following – “PS – I really, really, really like Randolph.  And Alfaro makes me go, “Wow!”.  I had him lower until I saw him in a sim inning, hitting off Stephen Inch (in his third sim outing).  He’s big and packs a wallop.  And Williams’ approach at the plate is similar to Randolph’s.  If Kingery is as good as they think/hope, this looks to have been a really good draft. Did I mention I like Randolph?”

I approached my poll by listing the top 20 prospects that I have actually seen this season.  Then decided where to slot the players I hadn’t seen, or hadn’t seen enough.  It came down to the pain I would experience if a player left the organization.  The more the pain, the higher the ranking.

I know I have some glaring omissions.  I don’t apologize for those.  For example, Carlos Tocci.  I have watched him for half a season.  I enjoy watching him play center field.  He plays a nice center field.  But, he doesn’t hit well enough.  Opposing outfields are playing him shallower than they did his first time through the league.  If he doesn’t put on some weight and muscle, I don’t see how he’ll ever hit enough to play in the majors. Sorry.

It appears that I penalize pitchers I’ve seen like Imhof and Leibrandt, but reward players like Arauz, Brown, and Lucas Williams.   Maybe I’m “too close to the trees to see the forest”. But the players I’ve seen the most leave an impression one way or the other.

I’ll post the Mike Drago’s Reading Eagle Top 20 Survey on the Rankings Page tonight or tomorrow.

Seven Phillies Prospects Attending 2015 AFL

The Phillies have announced the organization’s participants in the Arizona Fall League for 2015.

  • J.P. Crawford
  • Andrew Knapp
  • Dylan Cozens
  • Tom Windle
  • Nick Pivetta
  • Edubray Ramos
  • Yacksel Rios

The players will be part of the Glendale Desert Dogs.  The team will be made up of prospects from five teams.  The other four teams are the Astros, Dodgers, Pirates, and White Sox.  Todd Zolecki reported this story earlier today.

Lakewood’s Nelson Prada is attending as the hitting coach.  The Desert Dogs full roster is listed here.

The eligibility rules to play in the AFL are listed below.

The roster size is 30 players per team.

Each Major League organization is required to provide six players subject to the following requirements:

  • All Triple-A and Double-A players are eligible, provided the players are on at least a Double-A level roster no later than Aug. 1.
  • One player below the Double-A level is allowed per Major League team. (editor’s note: I believe this was expanded to two players last year.  That would explain why Rios and Cozens can both be attend as “below AA players on August 1st.)
  • One foreign player is allowed, as long as the player does not reside in a country that participates in winter ball, as part of the Caribbean Confederation or the Australian winter league.
  • No players with more than one year of credited Major League service as of August 31 are eligible, except a team may select one player picked in the most recently concluded Major League Rule 5 Draft.
  • To be eligible, players on Minor League disabled lists must be activated at least 45 days before the conclusion of their respective seasons.

Box Score Recap – 9/1/2015

Clearwater (77-57) split a double header with the Daytona Tortugas, winning 3-2 and losing 3-0.  Victor Arano and Matt Imhof got the starts.  Ricardo Pinto was pushed back to Thursday in Dunedin.  That could make him available for game two in the first round of the playoffs.

Game one went eight innings.  Arano started and pitched out of minor jams in the second and third before wriggling out of a lead off triple in the fourth.  The Tortugas finally got to him with a game-tying, two-run home run in the fifth.  Alberto Tirado pitched around two walks in two hitless innings.  Jesen Therrien picked up his third save with two strike outs in a perfect eighth.  The Threshers missed a bigger inning when they scored a run on a bases loaded double play in the first.  Rhys Hoskins provided a two-run lead with a solo home run (8) in the fourth.  Malquin Canelo provided the game winner on a solo home run (2) in the eighth. Continue reading Box Score Recap – 9/1/2015