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Luke-OH

2019 #19 Prospect Ryan McKenna - CF

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56 minutes ago, Luke-OH said:

You have to have enough power for pitchers to be afraid to miss in the middle of the plate. Or you have to have superlative bat control. That's how I'd phrase it. 

Yes that’s correct. Thanks again.Yes that’s correct. Thanks again.

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1 hour ago, Luke-OH said:

You have to have enough power for pitchers to be afraid to miss in the middle of the plate. Or you have to have superlative bat control. That's how I'd phrase it. 

Someone like Altuve before he, ahem, suddenly got a lot stronger.  By cutting out the junk food and stuff.

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6 minutes ago, Can_of_corn said:

Someone like Altuve before he, ahem, suddenly got a lot stronger.  By cutting out the junk food and stuff.

Along with taking his teammates advice on batting against certain pitchers while at home. Can't underestimate the value of...Veterans.

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54 minutes ago, Can_of_corn said:

Someone like Altuve before he, ahem, suddenly got a lot stronger.  By cutting out the junk food and stuff.

Altuve is obviously a different level of athlete by orders of magnitude than I was, but I went from squatting 185lb for 3 reps all out as a 150lb 18 year old with an 18" vertical to squatting 445lb as a 205lb 28 year old with a 32" vertical with nothing but lifting and eating. So it's not that hard for me to believe players can get stronger in a way that vastly improves performance naturally. 

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Just now, sportsfan8703 said:

@Luke-OH @Tony-OH Mullins or McKenna going forward?  If you had to take one?  I know Mullins exhausted his prospect status. 

I'd take McKenna, I like the swing and arm better and after last year, they have similar performance risk. 

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17 hours ago, sportsfan8703 said:

@Luke-OH @Tony-OH Mullins or McKenna going forward?  If you had to take one?  I know Mullins exhausted his prospect status. 

That's a good question. Defensively I'd go with McKenna because Mullins' arm is so poor that runners clearly takes extra bases on him that they wouldn't if even an average arm was out there. They both can go get the ball side to side well, Mullins goes back a little better for me but not significantly.

Offensively, I like to try and look at how they performed at the same levels at the same age if I can.

Both were at AA at Bowie at 22 years of age:
Name                slash                           WOBA     wRC+    BB%          K%          ISO
Mullins      .265/.319/.460/.778       .342        109        7.7%        16.6%      .194
McKenna  .232/.321/.365/.686       .315        104        10.4%       21.3%     .133

Both had decent platoon differences, but Mullins gets the edge there because he hits right-handers better. and there are more right-handers (Mckenna slashed .215/.313/.345/.658 against righties this year.)

At 23-years old, Mullins had a decent year at AAA and ended up in the big leagues where he hit well for a few weeks before major league pitchers found his holes and he's struggled since.

They have similar tools outside of the arm where McKenna gets a big nod, but Mullins brings a little better hit tool and a little more game power. 

In my mind they are both close as players so it's hard to say. The arm is so weak for Mullins that it makes him a problem in CF, so his versatility in the outfield is a question where as I could put McKenna anywhere out there and feel ok.

I think they both could end up 4th/5th outfielders but neither will be starters on a good team.

Basically it's what's your preference. Does the team need a platoon guy? Which side of the platoon? Are you looking for an outfielder that can fill in on all three? Depending on your answers would be the guy Id' want.

 

 

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20 hours ago, Luke-OH said:

On base percentage is very important, but there are two main ways to have a good on base percentage that are sustainable and one lesser, more volatile way. 

The main two ways are by 

1. Taking a lot of walks

2. Making a lot of contact 

The third way is maintaining a higher than average BABIP, which is a product to some degree of the type of contact one makes. Let's disregard this part for now since it's pretty wonky and there is plenty of debate over how much control a hitter has over their BABIP.

So here's the relationship between ISO (isolated slugging, a good indication of game power) and BB rate in the majors in 2019. As you can see as ISO increases (x axis) the trend is that BB rate (y axis) also increases. Why is this happening? Well it's because MLB pitchers are very good and throw more strikes to hitters that don't have power. That's why a guy like Joey Rickard walked 12.7% of the time in the minors, but only 6.1% of the time in the majors. 

image.png.55e2ac15940241120f630bfb56a3bf09.png

It's hard to have a high on base percentage without having average or better power. It's possible but tough.

The guys that can do it are the exception, not the rule. Even the guys you mentioned, both of their best years were their two seasons with 20+ HRs. And they made more contact than a guy like McKenna does. So like I said in the profile, he needs to figure out how to make the power stroke work or shift back to his line drive swing but shift his approach in order to decrease strikeouts, increase contact. Because if he doesn't have the power, the walks are going to go away, so the other way to increase on base percentage is to increase contact. He could do that by trying to shorten ABs, be more aggressive and not let himself get to 2 strike counts as often. 

This is just such a good answer and explanation. Thanks. You should article it for me!

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18 hours ago, Can_of_corn said:

Someone like Altuve before he, ahem, suddenly got a lot stronger.  By cutting out the junk food and stuff.

He got so darned strong. 

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On 11/15/2019 at 11:28 AM, weams said:

What makes you say that? The folks here are enlightened and do realize the facts of being one of the 850 MLB players. 

Recently, there has been more concern for maintaining a higher on-base percentage  even if it means not swinging for the fences every time up.  OH seems to have accepted that you can't hit Earl Weaver specials (3-run home runs) with no one on base.  The mere fact that McKenna is being criticized for changing to a power swing which hurt the rest of his game is a sign of enlightenment.

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On 11/15/2019 at 1:42 PM, MurphDogg said:

MLB Pipeline named him our best athlete.

I understand the ranking here, I would probably put him a little higher because I think a starting CF ceiling is more valuable than a 4th-5th starter ceiling, and I think his floor is probably Joey Rickard which is higher than some of the pitchers just ahead of him whose floor is middle-relief or being an up-down reliever/spot starter (or having an injury and not reaching the Majors at all).

Huge year coming up for him, one of the players I am most looking forward to following. He has now played 195 games at AA and is not yet old for the level, hopefully he comes out strong in the spring and is assigned to AAA. If they are going to have the MLB ball at AA I wouldn't mind him being held back, he definitely didn't force the promotion last year. Though I would rather see him than a Jace Peterson or Mason Williams type at AAA if he looks like he can potentially handle the level. 

So do I, so you can understand that I don't think that's his ceiling. This is one of those situations where Luke and I disagree on a the ceiling though we both agree on the most likely. While I suppose if everything worked out perfectly for McKenna that he has the tools to be an everyday guy, I don't think he shown anywhere near the production or consistency outside of his time in Frederick to really think that will happen. 

McKenna does flash you the tools in games that keeps you interested in him, and I'll admit when he hit a right-center home run that went about 420 feet this year it was intriguing, but I just see his struggles against spin and I'm not sure he'll be able to overcome them, particularly if he keeps trying to lift the ball. 

This was one of these situations where Luke would probably have McKenna a little higher than here, but I had him lower so we kinda met in the middle. Luke did the profile so he gets to put his ceiling in, but that's why we added the "other take". 

If I take off my scouting cap and put on my fan cap, I hope Luke's right. If I'm going to be wrong on a guy, I hope I'm wrong because I undervalued them.

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Tony makes an excellent point here, you’ll see that we had slightly different thoughts on a number of the prospects. Reading the profiles and the “another take” will help give you context on how our view may have differed.

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From a McKenna interview:

MLB.com: Who is your favorite non-baseball athlete?

McKenna: [California State University San Marcos] golfer Claire Hogle. I’m a big fan.

MLB.com: Who is your celebrity crush?

McKenna: She’s my celebrity crush, too. [Laughter]

https://www.mlb.com/orioles/news/ryan-mckenna-personality-q-a

 

https://www.instagram.com/clairehogle/?hl=en

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