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Luke’s Draft Musings

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The 1-1 is going to be down to probably Rutschman, Witt Jr, Abrams, and Vaughn. Elias mentioned 5 players, there are a few guys that 5th player could be, but he also could be just giving a general number when it's actually 4 or 6 players. 

I think it's worthwhile to start talking about picks #42, #71, and #79. There is going to be a lot of available talent at those spots. There were just two top 100 pick type talents added to the 2019 draft (originally classified as 2020), Tre Flecter - a toolsy HS CF and Edouard Julien - a college 3B slugger with SEC performance but some swing and miss. 

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Adley is the obvious pick. Here's what they are thinking. Can they get him under slot? I seriously doubt it. So now they have to decide if it's worth the risk to take someone else at 1:1 who will sign under slot. I wouldn't take that chance, but I don't have a say.

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2 minutes ago, Satyr3206 said:

Adley is the obvious pick. Here's what they are thinking. Can they get him under slot? I seriously doubt it. So now they have to decide if it's worth the risk to take someone at 1:1 who will sign under slot. I wouldn't take that chance, but I don't have a say.

Every single 1-1 that has signed has been under slot since this system has started.

Why would he demand slot?  Is he going to go 1-0 next year?  He will have less leverage as a senior.

The question isn't if they can sign him for under slot, the question is how much under under slot can they sign him.

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30 minutes ago, Can_of_corn said:

Every single 1-1 that has signed has been under slot since this system has started.

Why would he demand slot?  Is he going to go 1-0 next year?  He will have less leverage as a senior.

The question isn't if they can sign him for under slot, the question is how much under under slot can they sign him.

He also has less leverage as a catcher.   Catchers tend to have shorter careers.  It is in his best interests to get started ASAP because the body will break down.  Look at Weiters.  And this kid is 6’2”, on the larger side for a catcher. 

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So each of the last two years, I've had some under the radar draft favorites. Guys who aren't high profile that catch my eye for one reason or another. 

These aren't top draft prospects, although one of my favorites last year (Nick Sandlin) raised his stock enough to get popped in the second round. Rylan Bannon is the most successful of my 2017 under the radar favorites.

I'm going to make it more difficult this year, for college prospects, they can't be on D1baseball's top 350 draft prospects list. So yeah, these are deep dives, if they go undrafted it's a loss for me, if these guys get drafted it's a draw, if they go in the top 10 rounds it's a win. 

Under the Radar Favorite #1

Nate Fassnacht - SS - 5'11" 180lb - George Washington

Fassnacht is a guy who had some buzz coming out of his freshman season. That summer he played on the Cape as one of the few rising Sophomore's in the prestigious summer league. There he impressed scouts even when he wasn't playing with 55/60 raw power displays in batting practice and the actions to possibly stick at SS. Then he proceeded to struggle his Soph season in a weak conference and lose any buzz he once had. He didn't play summer ball last year and was a barely mentioned afterthought coming into his junior season. He's come out hot in 2019 showing a patient approach and compact stroke with average bat speed and natural loft. He has the ceiling defensively of being an average glove there, nothing wow, but good footwork and enough arm. Will work at 2B or 3B if he has to move off the position. It's hard to evaluate the bat with a high level of confidence because he doesn't face the best competition with GW having a weak schedule. That said, through 74 PA, he has a 4% K rate (3 strikeouts). K rate is the first stat to become meaningful for hitters (begins to stabilize at 60 PA). He has walked 18x and has 14 XBH and hit a number of balls to the wall in games I watched for 2B and 3B. He's also shown above average speed, I recorded one flashy 4.30 turn on a double. 

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2 hours ago, Luke-OH said:

Under the Radar Favorite #1

Nate Fassnacht - SS - 5'11" 180lb - George Washington

GW?    Wow, that is under the radar!

A high school friend of mine (hoosiers, take note!), Jim Goss, was a star player for GW in the late ‘70’s and a member of their Hall of Fame.    After graduating, he played one summer of short season ball (.849 OPS in the NY-Penn League) but his playing career ended there.  He coached GW’s team in 1983-84.  He’s now an orthopedic surgeon.  

https://gwsports.com/sports/2018/7/23/genrel-goss-jim00-html.aspx

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One thing I've been thinking about is how the Orioles are going to go about their draft prep with a fairly limited amateur scouting department having trimmed some of the guys from the previous regime without adding much.  I don't think this will affect their ability to make strong early round selections, but it's surely going to affect the number of later round guys they get multiple looks at. So I think we will see a very college heavy draft, especially in the later rounds. 

So maybe one premium HS guy in the top 4 picks, perhaps overslot and maybe a signable HS flyer or two in the later rounds, but that's probably going to be it (not counting the unsignable follow type picks in the 35-40 round range). At least that's my prediction. They will have a ton of data on the college guys, exit velocity, spin rate, sprint speed, etc from trackman. Plus I imagine they have a well developed statistical model for DI prospects. So in person scouting won't be needed in the same volume. Also, I'd expect some DII and DIII guys past the 10th round.

 

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Hunter Bishop continues to rake. He went 4-4 with a BB, SB, and 2 HR (108 and 104mph EV) as well as robbing the opponent of a HR in deep CF today.

I went back and watched some old video and he's really changed his set up at the plate, quieting the hands, and is keeping the upper half closed longer. He's not pulling off the ball anymore and apparently it didn't start this spring, it started in fall scrimmages. Reportedly he averaged 105mph EV in fall and spring scrimmages. For comparison, Aaron Judge averaged 94.7mph EV in 2018. Obviously, it's a BBCOR bat (larger sweet spot) and lesser pitching, but most of the college hitters can't hit the ball 105mph once, much less average it. 

I'll say it right now before anyone else does, he's a top 10 pick. He was a top prospect out of HS, he has prospect bloodlines (Braden Bishop is his older, but smaller brother), has a major league body right now, and is a plus runner. The question is hit tool track record, because he's had huge swing and miss issues as recently as last summer on the cape. The counterpoint is that he's made real positive changes and the bat speed is easy plus with looseness and he can hit both velocity and spin.

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On 3/13/2019 at 8:53 PM, Luke-OH said:

One thing I've been thinking about is how the Orioles are going to go about their draft prep with a fairly limited amateur scouting department having trimmed some of the guys from the previous regime without adding much.  I don't think this will affect their ability to make strong early round selections, but it's surely going to affect the number of later round guys they get multiple looks at. So I think we will see a very college heavy draft, especially in the later rounds. 

So maybe one premium HS guy in the top 4 picks, perhaps overslot and maybe a signable HS flyer or two in the later rounds, but that's probably going to be it (not counting the unsignable follow type picks in the 35-40 round range). At least that's my prediction. They will have a ton of data on the college guys, exit velocity, spin rate, sprint speed, etc from trackman. Plus I imagine they have a well developed statistical model for DI prospects. So in person scouting won't be needed in the same volume. Also, I'd expect some DII and DIII guys past the 10th round.

 

I thought Elias said he is comfortable with their amateur scouting numbers? 

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13 minutes ago, eddie83 said:

I thought Elias said he is comfortable with their amateur scouting numbers? 

Yeah, by comfortable with it he means comfortable using video/trackman/statistics instead of boots on the ground. 

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6 minutes ago, Luke-OH said:

Yeah, by comfortable with it he means comfortable using video/trackman/statistics instead of boots on the ground. 

I know he said in an interview that the staffing for the amateur side was covered. 

Considering how important this is to the future they better invest whatever they have to in order to accomplish that. 

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6 minutes ago, eddie83 said:

I know he said in an interview that the staffing for the amateur side was covered. 

Considering how important this is to the future they better invest whatever they have to in order to accomplish that. 

Is this the interview you are referring to? https://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/bs-sp-orioles-staffing-20190104-story.html

In that article, Elias is quoted as saying "But like I said in regard to our scouting and player development operations, we have full capabilities in place now to run those operations."

Later in the article Meoli cites numerous positions that have been (for the time being) left unfilled. 

I think you are misunderstanding me, it's not that Elias isn't ready for the draft, it's that his idea of being ready for the draft is different. College players can be thoroughly assessed with video, statistics, and Trackman. The only thing missing is the makeup component. It's not an unwillingness to invest, just a belief in investing differently. The Astros signed one HS player in last year's draft. 3 in 2017. 1 in 2016. 

https://tht.fangraphs.com/tht-annual-2018/the-state-of-scouting/

"In 2017, the Houston Astros made changes to their scouting departments that might indicate their vision of that future. Houston fired several scouts on both the pro and amateur side, combining the pro and amateur departments under a single roof and asking the remaining scouts to scout both amateur and pro ball, focusing on one or the other as they become more or less relevant throughout the year. The rest of the slack will theoretically be picked up by video and data and the in-office personnel who dissect them."

 

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4 minutes ago, Luke-OH said:

Is this the interview you are referring to? https://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/bs-sp-orioles-staffing-20190104-story.html

In that article, Elias is quoted as saying "But like I said in regard to our scouting and player development operations, we have full capabilities in place now to run those operations."

Later in the article Meoli cites numerous positions that have been (for the time being) left unfilled. 

I think you are misunderstanding me, it's not that Elias isn't ready for the draft, it's that his idea of being ready for the draft is different. College players can be thoroughly assessed with video, statistics, and Trackman. The only thing missing is the makeup component. It's not an unwillingness to invest, just a belief in investing differently. The Astros signed one HS player in last year's draft. 3 in 2017. 1 in 2016. 

https://tht.fangraphs.com/tht-annual-2018/the-state-of-scouting/

"In 2017, the Houston Astros made changes to their scouting departments that might indicate their vision of that future. Houston fired several scouts on both the pro and amateur side, combining the pro and amateur departments under a single roof and asking the remaining scouts to scout both amateur and pro ball, focusing on one or the other as they become more or less relevant throughout the year. The rest of the slack will theoretically be picked up by video and data and the in-office personnel who dissect them."

 

The interview was one he had with 105.7 earlier in February. I posted about it. It wasn’t an in depth statement. He was basically saying they were ready on the amateur side and not Internationally as far as staffing is concerned.

I’ll have to read the fangraphs article, thanks.  

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A couple potential day one arms who have caught my attention lately.

Adam Lukas - his stats aren't matching up to the stuff yet, but this is a WOW arm. It's an easy mid-90s that jumps out of his hand, their is also a quality slider and a workable changeup.

Tony Locey - D1 baseball tabbed him as a 7th round pick in their preseason rankings, but after watching a couple of his starts, it's hard to imagine him making it past the 2nd round. He's a huge guy and he throws hard, averaging 95-96 with an average breaking ball and a split change that is inconsistent but flashes out pitch potential. He has a couple mechanical issues that affect his strike-throwing ability, but it's at least a late inning arm. 

Isaiah Campbell - replaced Blaine Knight as Arkansas's Friday night starter, he's got similar competitive fire and he been nails thus far. His velocity has tick up, t96 on occasion. He's not as projectable as Knight and doesn't have the same type of high spin breaking ball but a quality arsenal with a CT, CB, CH and better present command than Knight had. 

HS guy

Josh Wolf - was topping out at 91-92 last summer, has been holding 95+, t98 this spring. 

 

One bonus guy, I'm not sure he's a top 100 pick name, but he has some of the traits that the Astros targeted under Lunhow/Elias.

Morgan McSweeney - sits low 90s, can t95-96, huge spin SL, above avg FB spin. Doesn't really know how to pitch, but he's a player devo project who could pop. 

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