I really like what I see from Means. I think of him as emerging as a 2 - a top 25-50 SP with some consistency.
He has been wicked good the past month. I like that he and his wife are both driven to be so good at their craft and are so competitive. One can count on Means maximizing his stuff through hard work, desire and dedication.
IMO, the current major league rotation is a C+ depending on Means ceiling and the future outlook of Akin and Kremer.
I believe the minor league situation is an A. I am not sure how many organizations have 2 SP candidates in the top 100, but by law of averages I doubt it is much more than 10. There are a LOT of names with reasonable chances of becoming 3-5 SPs in the organization. Baumann may be the next biggest name and we heard nice things about Bradish and we still have Lowther, Wells and Smith leading the wave after Akin/Kremer. And a bunch of names below that.
I would have to strongly disagree about any renaissance with pitching philosophies. Our current FO has spent very little of the past few drafts on pitching. Almost all of the names in the opening post were provided by the prior regime. I think this is mostly by design as Elias will draft hitters. Going forward, I expect our pitching inventory to be stocked by international signs, trades for minor leaguers in other organizations (such as the Bradish and Smith deals) and lastly - like Houston - trade for TOR, cost controlled SPs mostly using the hitting inventory. I expect high $ investments in pitchers in the draft and internationally will be a lesser occurrence.
Definitely, all prospects are flawed and no pitching prospect can be counted on.
I would be very pleased to get a 3, a 4, a 5, and a late inning reliever (Castro or Givens quality) out of the Akin, Kremer, Baumann, Zimmermann, Wells, Bradish, and Smith crowd. A lot of quantity and reasonable quality.
If we can get a #2 out of Hall and Rodriguez, I would be pleased. Tough to ever expect even 50 percent of pitching prospects to pan out. Obviously I hope they both become top of the rotation starters, but you can't rely on it.
I would have been pleased to get a reasonable 6th inning reliever out of David Hess.
Of course, occasionally a John Means comes along and blows your expectations out of the water, but that is much more rare than the other way around.