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2020 1st round pick (2): Heston Kjerstad - OF - (Junior) (Arkansas)

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9 hours ago, PHRESH said:

I don't remember who it was, but they also mentioned Todd Helton. Perhaps that's based on the swing? 

 

Helton kept his hands high, but they both have that high leg kick. 

Helton's swing seems MUCH more fluid to me. Kjerstad's seem "hitchy" to me and not nearly as fluid / natural.  

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16 minutes ago, Can_of_corn said:

If you don't think that Elias feels that the Kjersted pick was the best for the organization then you must feel he's trying to sabotage them in some way.

The question is, why does he feel that way?

...or he possibly has monetary restrictions? 

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1 minute ago, wildbillhiccup said:

...or he possibly has monetary restrictions? 

Sure, I'm one of the few that have suggested the possibility.  That doesn't change what I said.  It just means that financial restrictions were part of the reason he thought Kjersted was the best choice.

That would fall under the why does he feel this way.

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1 hour ago, Spl51 said:

Ya the more I watch and read about Kjerstad, the more it makes sense, it's just not a sexy pick. I'm more disappointed with the options that are left, and I'm pretty sure the Rays took Bitsko from us. If we get Wilcox or Kelley and a Fulton or Winn, then I'll be satified

I mean, shouldn't the #2 pick be a sexy pick? Especially for an organization in desperate need of future potential superstars. If it was me, I'd want to draft a potentially great player with a pick that high, not someone who projects to be average and who will probably be a part time DH by the time he's 30. The thing that has really handcuffed the Orioles in recent years is that they haven't had overly athletic players. It's tied their hands quite a bit in terms of lineup and roster flexibility and hindered their defense. If it was me, athleticism would probably be one of the top traits I looked for in young players. Martin seems like he would have checked the athletic quite a bit more than Kjerstad. 

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2 minutes ago, Can_of_corn said:

Sure, I'm one of the few that have suggested the possibility.  That doesn't change what I said.  It just means that financial restrictions were part of the reason he thought Kjersted was the best choice.

That would fall under the why does he feel this way.

I think that's what frustrates me. If the ability to open the wallet and sign Martin was what kept them from signing him then I'm VERY discouraged by the pick. This teams has been completing pinching pennies for years, there's zero excuse for them not being able to open their wallet to sign the best available player. 

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1 minute ago, wildbillhiccup said:

I think that's what frustrates me. If the ability to open the wallet and sign Martin was what kept them from signing him then I'm VERY discouraged by the pick. This teams has been completing pinching pennies for years, there's zero excuse for them not being able to open their wallet to sign the best available player. 

If the O's leave a bunch of pool money unspent I think the positive feelings towards the Brothers Angelos will take a huge hit.

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I would really like to know the unknown here. Elias and Sig saw something in these first two picks that most don't see. What's the analytic factor that they are focusing on? 

I suspect we'll have to wait for the publication of "Birdball:  The Story of the Orioles' 2024 World Series Run" to find out. 

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Two things:

1)  Seems like every year I have remind folks of our 2001 draft.  Our first six picks - Chris Smith, Bryan Bass, Mike Fontenot, David Crouthers, Rommie Lewis and Jim Johnson - were .... all Baseball America Top 100 rated kids.  Folks want consensus drafting from the Os - that was the draft.  JJ had a nice career for us, but this draft was a bust.  

2)  I found this tidbit without looking too hard at one draft site - pre-draft - prospectslive - Here, the most complete SEC bat is still available when the Rangers go on the clock. Yes, I think Kjerstad’s bat presents better tools than that of Austin Martin. During the shortened 2020 season, Kjerstad produced as a 55+ hit, 60 power outfielder.

Prospectslive downgraded Kjerstad for lack of speed and a limited defensive home as a corner OFer all the way to 17th and some swing issues, but commented that "this bat could be one of the most impactful in the entire first round if everything continues to click." 

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14 minutes ago, wildbillhiccup said:

I think that's what frustrates me. If the ability to open the wallet and sign Martin was what kept them from signing him then I'm VERY discouraged by the pick. This teams has been completing pinching pennies for years, there's zero excuse for them not being able to open their wallet to sign the best available player. 

What makes Martin worth the money and a better prospect? 

Sure, he looked like the best prospect and even potential 1/1 going into the season. He didn't do anything to build on that projection - he just remained pretty flat with the small sample size. He was moved off of SS and also missed two games and his bat didn't show much more than it did the year prior.

 

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I don't really know anything about any of these guys, but I think the bottom line is you have to decide whether this year is a small sample size or development and improvement. He went from a 21.6% K rate/7% BB rate last year to 11.5%/9% this year, in 78 PAs. According to fangraphs K rate stabilizes at 60 PAs. If he did what he did this year all year he'd have been an easy top 5 guy IMO.

The problem with this year is you have to project the rest of the year, but if you do that correctly you might look like a genius. I would bet JJ Bleday wasn't a top 5 pick in March last year, but then he went and hit 27 HR after having 6 the previous two years. 

Also, it's been said, but in an incredibly small sample (14 games) for Team USA last year he led the team with a .395 BA and 1.077 OPS (.395/.426/.651). Tork was .260/.361/.440 and Martin .250/.321/.396.

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6 minutes ago, DirtyBird said:

What makes Martin worth the money and a better prospect? 

Sure, he looked like the best prospect and even potential 1/1 going into the season. He didn't do anything to build on that projection - he just remained pretty flat with the small sample size. He was moved off of SS and also missed two games and his bat didn't show much more than it did the year prior.

 

For me, it boils down to athleticism. Even if he doesn't stick at SS I think he has the potential to be a gold glove CF. 

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Just now, wildbillhiccup said:

For me, it boils down to athleticism. Even if he doesn't stick at SS I think he has the potential to be a gold glove CF. 

Yeah, ok.

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Just now, Es4M11 said:

What's a good potential outcome for Kjerstad? Left handed version of Mark Trumbo?

I'd say Davis but I don't think Kjerstad will walk that much.

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13 hours ago, ISU94 said:

Again, in a year where baseball hasn't been played analysts for media outlets put together big boards/rankings.

Even then he was considered by most a top 10-12 guy.

Martin wanted above slot. Several "underslot" guys would've been minimal. I'm sure they discussed $ with several of them they viewed as worthy of #2. This is who they landed on and feel best about in totality.

I know I am late to the party and this may have already been touched on, but on the Fan recently, Elias said they and probably every other MLB club simulated the rest of the college season and maybe that somehow effected the choice(s) in the draft for multiple teams.   It is interesting that Martin slid to 5, that has to say something.  I am in no position as to conjecture what....

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