Phuture Phillies 2016 Reader Top 30 #23

Nick Pivetta was selected the Readers’ Poll 22nd prospect.  He received 91 of 346 votes (26%). He finished comfortably ahead of Jhailyn Ortiz (77 votes, 22%).  Deivi Grullon, Tom Windle, Victor Arano, and Darnell Sweeney with votes in the twenties and between 6-8% of the vote.

Nicholas Pivetta was acquired by the Phillies from the Washington Nationals for closer Jonathan Papelbon and cash on July 28, 2015.  He was assigned to Reading.

Pivetta was drafted by the Nationals in the 4th round of the 2013 Amateur Draft out of New Mexico Junior College.  The native of Victoria, British Columbia was a member of the Canadian Junior team from 2009-12.

Pivetta

Pivetta pitched well at the lowest levels of the Nationals’ system, and opened the 2015 season at Advanced-A Potomac.  He posted a 7-4, 2.29 in 86.1 innings.  After a mid-season promotion to Double-A Harrisburg in the Eastern League, Pivetta cratered in his 3 starts before the trade (0-2, 7.20, 5.4 BB/9, 3.6 K/9). He continued to struggle in 7 starts at Reading in the Eastern League (2-2, 7.31, 6.0 BB/9, 7.9 K/9).

I imagine he’ll get another crack at Double-A in 2016.  He’ll need to avoid the walks to continue to move up as a starter.

Top 30 so far:

  1. Crawford
  2. N. Williams
  3. Thompson
  4. Appel
  5. “C” Randolph
  6. Quinn
  7. Alfaro
  8. Kilome
  9. Knapp
  10. Eflin
  11. Hoskins
  12. Kingery
  13. Pinto
  14. Cozens
  15. Tocci
  16. Goeddel
  17. Medina
  18. Cordero
  19. Eshelman
  20. Canelo
  21. Lively
  22. Pivetta

I’ll add a few new names to the next poll.  Logan Moore and a couple other guys.

Next up is your selection for #23.

81 thoughts on “Phuture Phillies 2016 Reader Top 30 #23

  1. I went with Grullon here. I can’t vote for Ortiz in the top 30. I hope, next year, he’s a top 10 talent but I’ll play the Missouri card here: “Show me” first.

    1. Back before MLB instituted the slot values for the draft, HS players who waited up until the deadline to sign did not play until the following year. Just as one example, Matt Wieters went No. 5 overall in 2007 but did not play that year. Yet BA ranked him the No. 12 prospect in baseball the following spring, before he had a professional AB. This happened routinely back then: prospects being ranked on pedigree, rather than production.

      I’m not saying Ortiz is a top 100 prospect (or a top 15 prospect in the Phils system right now). But his pedigree certainly warrants placement above a player like Nick Pivetta, IMO.

      1. The thing that Ortiz has going for himself is almost unlimited potential he just is a long way of reaching it. From what I’ve read Pivetta’s ceiling is a number 3 pitcher or a back of the bullpen guy. Now that’s not nearly as sexy as “unlimited” but that has real value. Pivetta is the safer pick to make the majors he’s not guaranteed but he’s still a safer pick than Ortiz and he has a legitimate ceiling so I can see how he was voted over Ortiz.

  2. Keith Law’s top 100 is next week.

    Tidbits from his chat yesterday:

    Tom: How much merit do you give the influx of “tanking is killing the game!” discussions?
    Klaw: Zero. It’s not killing the game… I mean, would Phillies fans rather see a bad, expensive 72-win team, or a bad, young, cheap 65-win team? I’m betting the latter. Give the fans Nola and Thompson and Velazquez and Crawford and put the future on TV every night instead of signing a bunch of garbage veterans to one-year, $10 million deals just to pretend you’re competing.

    Mike: How much time in the minors will Lazarito likely need, assuming he’s legit?
    Klaw: That guy has gotten way more press than his workouts have merited.

    Josh: How quickly do you think that Groome could move through the minors?
    Klaw: Not quickly at all. Big arm, not advanced or polished.

    Craig: Which team has done more in the past 12 months to improve its farm system: Philadelphia or Milwaukee?
    Klaw: Milwaukee.

    1. Huh..did Milwaukee not have a farm system a year ago? Either that or he hates both the Giles and hamels deal.

    2. I’ll give it to the Brew crew they somehow picked up Rhymer Liriano and Garin Cecchini for absolutely nothing…

      Both only 24 and decided they can’t play by their drafting teams.

      1. DMAR…..I think it has to be a little more then the Brewer’s acquisition of Liriano and Cecchini that Keith Law would make that statement. Both of them entering their 25age season have some warts at the plate and in the field.

        1. Definitely Romus. I just read the post and went into their top 30 to see what they had going on out there. Those were 2 names I knew from the Padres and BoSox systems that at one time or another were highly touted in those 2 orgs

          1. DMAR…..you have to remember when it comes to our 2nd prospect in our ratings, KLaw did not think too highly of Nick Williams only 10 months ago in April 2015.
            Bucky (Texas)
            Have you heard about Nick Williams’ supposed improvements in approach? Any hope there, or would you still call him a NP?

            Klaw (1:04 PM)
            I haven’t called him a non-prospect, just not a very good prospect. Three walks in 50 PA shouldn’t make us rethink who he is – a player with a bad approach and terrible instincts on both sides of the ball.
            …….so he really is not going to waver on his take on a prospect in AA or above until that prospect is in the MLB and producing. Though, to is crdit he does own up to past mistakes, ie Paul Goldschimdt.

            1. Honestly I’m indifferent to the Klaws, Mayo’s and Callis’ of the world. Not that I don’t listen to what they have to say because they do have access to more scouts than I do but at the end of the day they themselves are not real scouts.

              Even a real scout’s words can sometimes to defy what he actually sees because he might personally really like a kid.

            2. Yes can understand that reasoning.
              But we all like to get as much information on a prospect as possible, just to make a more accurate assessment.

    3. I’m still picking Groome unless some body else comes charging out of the gate . Mlb just put out there top 50 draft prospects the first 4 are Groome, Puk, Hansen, Pint. The bats are ok but not 1:1 worthy.Groome curve is a 60 he has the best delivery and Control. Pint was having control issues because of his delivery either Hansen or Puk had arm tightness. This season should answer most of the questions.

  3. Grullon here for me. I went down the list and I think he is the best next player with booth accomplishment and projection and in a key position. He picked up his hitting at the end of the year last year. His catching can improve too and probably will. He has the tools. Still young he is the guy who belongs in the 20s on our list, but, I think, will improve in every category during this season.

    1. I have voted Windle the past few polls simply bc he is reasonably close to making the majors and I feel like the back end of the bullpen is underrated

  4. Grullon here Paulino might take awhile I took at Sweeney minor league numbers . He’ll be next I hope he can bet out Cesar Hernandez , who had the lowest ISO in All of baseball among 2nd baseman with at least 400 at bats.

      1. Yea he is 20 2nd yr in org first time on main land . So next yr he’s in SS maybe if he’s doing well they push him up to lakewood. Some LA kids get signed late he was signed at 19 . Encarnacion was signed at 17 he’s only 19.

  5. Grullon again, and reupping my comments of yesterday about the inanity of voting for Ortiz just based on the size of his bonus and some very mixed scouting reports. We’re going to have at least 2 more years to argue about him before he’s even the age of a rookie league player, so what’s the harm in a little patience.

    Others worth considering here: Arano, Pujols.

    1. ACA, I agree with you. However, out of curiosity, I checked to see where Luis Encarnacion was ranked in the Readers’ Poll prior to his first season. Encarnacion was voted 21st in 2014 after signing for $1M the previous August. It appears that Ortiz might secure the next position this poll. The deeper prospect pool and size of bonus seem to be balancing each other out. For reference, the 2014 poll was topped by Franco, Biddle, Crawford. And, a snap shot of those around #21 –

      17. Deivi Grullon
      18. Cord Sandberg
      19. Andrew Knapp
      20. Adam Morgan
      21. Luis Encarnacion
      22. Shane Watson
      23. Jose Pujols
      24. Cameron Perkins

      1. I think it is time to add Shane Watson to the ballot. He came back strong from his shoulder surgery and recreational drug suspension to touch 96 last season. He still has his good curve ball too. I think he stars in Clearwater this year and moves up the prospect ladder as long as his arm holds up. He put on weight, which I’m figuring is muscle. At 22 he’s still age appropriate for A ball. He missed 2 years of pitching development but hopefully he matured mentally and physically.

        Once Grullon gets voted onto the list, I’ll be looking for someone to vote for. I’m not ready to pick a teenager lottery pick. Valentine, Asher, and Gonzalez are others I like, but Watson has the greatest upside.

        1. If he came back from shoulder surgery and was touching 96, that’s really impressive. He could be one of those guys who comes back from out of nowhere and really adds value to the pitching depth of the organization.

          Speaking of pitching. I’ve been thinking about the Kenny Giles trade and the more I ponder it the more brilliant it seems in retrospect. Kenny Giles is a super young closer – he’s got it all. But he’s still just a relief pitcher – his max value would be like 2-3 WAR a year, although I will be the first to admit that WAR does not, to me, seem to sufficiently describe the value of a top closer. Still, to be able to flip him for a current 4/5 and several possible mid to high end starters is pretty staggering. The more I read about Appel, the more intrigued I become about his turning the corner and becoming a solid or better starting pitcher. If you look at who they got, they really got guys when their perceived value was on the lower side – Velasquez because he skipped a level and hasn’t established himself; Appel because he hasn’t turned the corner in the minors yet; and Eshelman because he hasn’t really worked any minor league innings. But the important thing is that there’s really no red flags with their stuff or their health. Even if one of these guys becomes a solid mid-rotation starter it’s a perfectly good trade – if they get more than that, which seems highly likely, it’s a fabulous deal.

          1. The best move the Phillies made all year, was trading Papelbon and allowing Ken Giles to inflate his value, by getting a few saves. If the Phillies don’t trade Papelbon, Giles is sviewed as a setup man. He’d get a Carson Smith like return, and wed we’d be looking at Wade Miley instead of all of those prospects. Teams still pay a premium for saves, even for equally talented pitchers.

          2. J64….Oberholtzer could still be a very reliable lefty. Having a minus 4ERA in the AL is pretty remarkable. He did slump from July 2014 thru his 8 starts last year, but last year he ended up with a blister after ST and that set him back. Hopefully, he has overcome some of those hurdles.
            Comping metrics is fun but not always accurately predictable.
            However when you look carefully at his metrics in his first 254 innings pitched in the MLB, versus former teammate LHP Dallas Keuchel and his first two years of 239 innings pitched , There are some similarities:
            Oberholtzer:
            IP—–254…H/9—9.9…HR/9—.8…BB/9—2.1…SO/9—5.9…WHIP—1.3…W/L—–9-18
            FIP——-3.72…ERA——3.94
            Keuchel:
            IP——239…H/9—-10.4…HR/9—1.3…BB/9—3.2…SO/9—6.1…WHIP—1.5…W/L—–9-18…FIP——-4.71…ERA——5.19

            Will he end up like Keuchel….most likely not, but it is fun to be hopeful.

            1. If Oberholtzer ends up as anything more than an inning eating 4 or 5, that would be huge, but even if he just stays as he is, it’s a nice additional piece. As I view it, Oberholtzer and Morgan are essentially competing for a starting spot – but if both are decent, you can flip one at the trade deadline and keep the other. Arauz was a nice arm to add too.

        2. I was a big Watson fan pre-injury. I hadn’t heard that he was touched 96 last year; Matt Winks said that his delivery was messy, which makes sense after the time off. I’m glad he came back to pitch last year but I’m still very much in “wait and see” mode with him. If he can start the season on time, I’ll be looking out for any scouting reports to see what he’s got but I won’t be voting for him in the top 30.

          There are other guys left with similar or better upside and his injury history makes him just about as risky as any of them.

  6. Grullon here but I can see the argument for Ortiz as well. Next few I have are Brown, Tirado, and Ramos.

    1. The best defensive catcher in the system (age 19) isn’t as good as (yet another) A-ball pitcher, with a K rate of 5 per 9?

      1. Yes because Grullon is very risky. Now this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Just shows the depth of the system right now.

        1. Arano is also very risky, though I like him as a prospect. Grullon’s defense gives him a very high floor for a 19 year old, even if his bat doesn’t do much (see: Logan Moore).

        2. I’d argue that Grullon–who has a potential carrying tool in his defense–is far less risky all things considered than a bunch of these right handed pitchers who have less-than-dominating stuff. Basically a lot more has to go right with with Arano’s development for him to be an MLB player. Of course, Grullon is still plenty risky, but who isn’t when you’re at the back of the Top 20?

  7. I voted for Tirado but there are so many guys you could pick at this slot, including Arano, Ortiz (I get – but I need to see more) and Sweeney.

  8. Pujols. Kind of shocked some of the high upside guys aren’t getting more love. Ortiz, Grullon and Pujols all could be ranked higher. Mid 20’s isn’t top 10.

  9. Windle over Tirado and Arano. And back on the KLaw chat. I don’t think that it is even close between the Phils and Brewers over the past 12 months. The Phils have improved dramatically more, IMO, and not because I am a Phillies fan. Keith Law takes positions on guys and until Nick Williams makes the All Star team, he will continue with his initial assessment. Case in point, Mikael Franco. My eyes tell me that he plays an, at least competent, 3B. KLaw says no, moving him to 1B, which severely diminishes his value. I trust what I see until proven otherwise.

    1. Matt explain Windle to me because I’m just not getting it. Bad WHIP profile, bad k/9 profile especially if you are calling him a reliever at this point. Lefties hit .264 against him with a .773 OPS so he doesn’t even profile as a Loogy.

      You guys are considering the Rule V guys wouldn’t Stumpf be ranked higher than Windle?

      1. Dmar, simply based on him as a Lefty reliever. I think he makes the Majors in that role, and I have him with Tirado, although still realize the command issues and Arano who I hope jumps up this year. I like them at this juncture a bit more than Ortiz, who I frankly have seen play zero. At this juncture, I simply am going on who I thinks make the Majors, and will probably put Sweeney in there somewhere.

    2. Not that I agree, but It’s not that outrageous of an opinion, that the Brewers improved their system more than the Phillies in the last 12 months. I believe I just heard (I forget which podcast BP or fangraphs)either Dave Cameron or Ben Lindbergh say the same thing, just last week. Just dismissing that opinion seems like provincial thinking.

      When you consider:

      1. BA rated the Brewers as having the 3rd best draft in the majors, and Trent Clark is ranked ahead of Cornelius Randolph by most in the industry.
      2. Both MLB.com and Keith Law had Brett Phillips (acquired for Gomez)ranked far ahead of Thompson and N Williams.
      3. This winter they’ve acquired (top 20 organization prospects) Diaz, Ceccini and Liriano for nothing.
      4. Alfaro and Appel aren’t regarded as highly as they were 12 months ago.

      If you consider everything, its not that hard to see their positions.

      1. Not to belabor it, because it is all opinion, but even if Phillips projects better than Williams and Alfaro, that does not dismiss them as prospects. I happen to like Thompson a lot, and he seems to be disregarded by some of the National guys. And, I will give you, for arguments’ sake, Clark over Corny.. They have added Phillips and Clark to their top 10. The Phils added Williams, Thompson, Alfaro and Corny, and I think Appel is still a terrific addition. So, if the question was who improved the most, I clearly go Phils.

  10. Sorry if you have already discussed these guys but when I get to 28 – 30 I always have a hard time deciding guys who make the cut or not. I have Sandberg, Tobias, and Windle around 30….I have not decided who I will vote for when we get there….. I am easily persuaded so let me know your thoughts on these three prospects….I have a bunch on Windle but not on the other two.

    1. Sandberg and Windle are out of my top 30. I have Tobias-27; Lively-28, Lucas Williams-29 and Jon Richy-30

      I like to place guys in a rank where they are more likely to over achieve that rank as opposed to under achieve it.

        1. Yup many here will knock his SS SSS production as him being old for WPT but if you scout the player you’ll see some tools to like and some tools that should translate to good production as he moves through the system.

          He has really quick hands generates incredible bat speed and maintains good balance with a nice short swing. As a switch hitter his splits were evenly weighted.

    2. I have Tobias as my #30, right behind Juan Luis. I have Sandberg and Windle lower.

      I’m not worried about Tobias being too old for W-port because he had just been drafted. He’s in sort of a tough spot, being stuck behind Valentin and Kingery at 2B, but he might be able to fill more of a utility role if he hits his way out of Lakewood. He seems to have enough power, speed and defensive tools to find a major league role as long as he hits a little.

      Tobias also made the BA NYPL top 20 list, which is a nice acknowledgement even though it wasn’t the strongest year for the league.

        1. He was presumably signed before last season, because he debuted last year in the GCL at age 19 and generated some buzz. Athletically he has a similar profile to Tocci, but he’s bigger so hopefully he won’t have quite the same concerns about his power. He’s got very good potential in the field and on the bases.

            1. DMAR…think Nomar Mazara when you think of Juan Miguel Luis!
              Hey, its that time of the year to be a Phillie dreamer.;)

      1. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Tobias flies right by Valentin, who hasn’t shown much since joining the organization

        1. I think he might have to pass Kingery before he passes Valentin. Maybe Valentin hasn’t shown much, but he also hasn’t played much. He was good with Clearwater late last year.

  11. Ortiz turns into big poppy , Thompson turns into Zimmerman , Williams turns into Harper. Fantasy wk all aboard

  12. Jon Mayo, from MLB.com on Jake Thompson’s rating.

    Walking Slow @KeithKeith08
    @JonathanMayo @MLBPipeline Jake Thompson after the trade absolutely dominated for two months. What kept him from the top 50? #42 last year

    1:49 PM – 3 Feb 2016 · Garland, TX, United States
    I’d warn against using a two-month span to evaluate any player at any level, though Thompson was very impressive after joining the Phillies in the Cole Hamels deal. I’m also not sure where you got your ranking from. Thompson was No. 83 on our preseason Top 100 a year ago when he was with the Rangers. When we re-ranked over the summer, he came in at No. 59. Thanks to graduations of other prospects from the list, Thompson was No. 51 at the end of the season, so No. 55 is right around where he should be

  13. BA’s Teddy Cahill on Prediction of SEC Pitcher of the Year: A.J. Puk
” Puk has always had electric stuff, but he was able to harness it in the second half last season and helped push the Gators to Omaha. If the hard-throwing lefty is able to repeat that performance over a full season, he’ll likely be the first pick in the draft.”

    1. I watched Pink, Puk , Groome deliveries Groome there no effort he throws mid 90 ‘ s and curve With of the The cleanest deliveries I ever seen.He, s built from the ground up when he fills out he could hit 100.Pint there’s a little to much in that delivery and his control shows it. In 2 ings 2 wild pitches 1 up 1 down. The ball really Flys out of his hand.Puk the wild card he has a better delivery then Pink but not in the same class as Groome. By the numbers his Era when up last yr his k/9 and w/9 went up too. He was hit less so it the walks hurt him. He’s 21 and a jr this yr so there probably still a little more filling out to do.he can hit too and climb a crane 5 too. What he does this yr will decide where he goes . He needs to dominate the Ncaa . Back to Groome if I had to compare his delivery with an NFL QB in would be Marino .

  14. See Romus, that is exactly what I mean. That is convoluted thinking. Thompson was 51 at the end of the season, after he actually pitched very well, then was outstanding in a playoff situation. So, 55 is not right where he should be, Top 50 is.

    1. matt13…….I can your point.
      MLB however has a different approach after the June draft and after the July trades.
      Jon Mayo above says ‘re-rank over the summer’, mindful, does not say rework. I suppose that is too much of a daunting undertaking, so they more or less cut and paste prospects into compartments, and when they graduate to the majors everyone gets bumped up, like Thompson did from 59 to 51.
      They do their ‘work’ every January, and now they like the shiny new toys of the previous draft and what happens to Thompson is what occurs.
      Agree , logically, you would think he would at least be 50, or at least remain at 51, since he finished at 51.

  15. sweeney and ascher probably should get more respect. while they had disappointing MLB stints at least they made it to the majors which is what some on this list might not even do. both put up solid minor league numbers and i think both will have major league careers, maybe sweeney as a plus-utility guy and ascher a bullpen guy but i think they can stick around somewhere in the majors

    1. I agree on Sweeney, but on Asher, man, he just does nothing to move the needle for me. Sometimes guys take a big leap forward that you don’t expect, but short of that, I don’ see anything to be excited about. He just looks like the kind of guy who will bounce up and down between AAA and the majors.

  16. A couple of names that had good stats Jason Zgardowski , Jacob Waguespick, Austin Davis and Jose Antequera who is small but stole 15 bases and more balls then walks.

    1. Tim,

      I don’t know anything about Waguespack except that he’s a 6-foot, 6-inch righty reliever, which fits the profile and that he had very interesting stats last year. Couldn’t get anybody out in four Rookie League appearances, then moved up to Williamsport and scorched a 0.42 ERA, 0.80 WHIP and struck to 25 batters in 21 innings.

      He was drafted 37th in 2012, went to Ole Miss and wasn’t drafted at all last year.

      Jim or anyone who’s seen this guy pitch, any first-hand insights, observations?

    1. Roccom – is that what the reports are as to what he was hitting last week (it seems so from your comment)? Iif so, that’s just nasty bad ass stuff. When you throw even close to that hard you don’t have to a lot to be successful – just throw strikes and find one halfway decent breaking pitch that can be used as “show me” pitch. Damn that should be fun to watch. That little Ben Revere trade could end up paying some dividends and, better yet, we really had no use for him once Herrera surpassed him.

    1. What’s nuts about that list is that they have Cord Sandberg ahead of Tocci. I can see the argument for Hoskins in front of Tocci, but Sandberg? I want to believe in him too, but he’s underwhelmed at every turn.

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