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Is Elias/SIGBOT and crew really good at drafting and development after the 1st round?


Tony-OH

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In general I don't love college players.  Sure they come in more polished but they don't have enough hours put into baseball at age 18 and 19.  Best case scenario, they're drafted at age 20, go to AA at 21, AAA at 22, and are ready for the bigs at age 23.

 

But if they're drafted at age 22, it's super dicey.  They have to hit AA at age 23 and get a midseason promotion to AAA in order to stay on schedule.

 

I mean, drafting is also hard and we've hit on picks that weren't first overall, so at the very least we're good at identifying first and 2nd round talent.  But taking a bunch of mediocre college prospects really puts a damper on the farm system's ceiling IMO.

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No one is hitting on picks after the 1st round or 2 at a high rate.

 

Of the current top 35 prospects, almost all of them were taken in the 1st round or were an international signing. A handful were taken in the 2nd. 

 

In fact there is only one player in the top 35 prospects who was not 1st/2nd round pick, or an international signing. Coby Mayo (4th)

 

Elias/Sigbot are great.

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Also keep in mind that we're going from a state where we were primarily tanking and rebuilding almost our entire roster from the draft (mission accomplished), to a point where we're primarily trying to replace players who are churning off the roster, and using anything left over for trade pieces.  So we're not going to need to have quite the same hit rate going forward as we did coming through the rebuild.

Although I share the concern regarding our ignoring of pitching in recent drafts.  It's being felt and needs to addressed going forward. 

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I did start a thread in the Draft Section regarding his drafts and we touched on this exact thing.  I do think they need to take a look and think about doing things differently.   In a way, they did with Lord and Baumeister.  We'll see with this draft but we haven't gotten much from round 2-4 with college position players since 2020.

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A couple of years ago I did a study of the 1998-2005 drafts, to get a sense of what a good draft looked like.  I found that the mean average team draft produced players worth 22.3 rWAR in their careers, while the median draft was lower at 14.5 rWAR.   I also found that, while the percentages varied a lot over the 8 years, roughly 38.5% of the value of the draft came in the first round, 54.5% in the first three rounds.  So, based on that I'd calculate that on average, a team was getting maybe 13 rWAR per draft from players drafted after the first round, though the median outcome would be lower than that.  Over a 5-year span, if a team's players selected after the first round accrued more than 65 rWAR in their careers, that would be an above average outcome.

It will be a very long time -- more than a decade -- before we know if Elias & co. beat that average.   Might Gunnar beat that all by himself?   That's not probable, but possible.  

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As I have always said the fact that the draft prospects go from metal bats to wooden bats is huge.  It would be like college basketball players playing with an 8 foot room then going to the NBA with the 10 foot rim.  Some guys can make the adjustment better than others and some look great with metal bats but then with the wooden bat the ball doesn’t come off the same.  The only time you see any of the college guys play with a wooden bat is in the cape cod or some other summer league showcase but there they are only getting 50 or so at bats at most and many of the guys that make a longer run in the NCAA tournament which goes into June opt out of a lot of summer ball.  Plus the draft is usually before many of the wooden leagues even get ramped up so you are trying to evaluate a guy with wooden bats from a year ago.  I understand the reasons for the metal to wooden bats but now with all the money MLB makes it wouldn’t be a terrible idea with putting some of that into college ball going wooden bats. 

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31 minutes ago, Frobby said:

A couple of years ago I did a study of the 1998-2005 drafts, to get a sense of what a good draft looked like.  I found that the mean average team draft produced players worth 22.3 rWAR in their careers, while the median draft was lower at 14.5 rWAR.   I also found that, while the percentages varied a lot over the 8 years, roughly 38.5% of the value of the draft came in the first round, 54.5% in the first three rounds.  So, based on that I'd calculate that on average, a team was getting maybe 13 rWAR per draft from players drafted after the first round, though the median outcome would be lower than that.  Over a 5-year span, if a team's players selected after the first round accrued more than 65 rWAR in their careers, that would be an above average outcome.

It will be a very long time -- more than a decade -- before we know if Elias & co. beat that average.   Might Gunnar beat that all by himself?   That's not probable, but possible.  

I wonder if that study took as long as Moose’s banner.

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Gunnar, Ortiz, Mayo, Stowers, Hernaiz (turned into Irvin), and Norby is pretty solid. Beavers could be coming soon. Handley is still interesting. I would guess that group stacks up as well as any organization in the game.

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2 minutes ago, Aristotelian said:

Gunnar, Ortiz, Mayo, Stowers, Hernaiz (turned into Irvin), and Norby is pretty solid. Beavers could be coming soon. Handley is still interesting. I would guess that group stacks up as well as any organization in the game.

Beavers is a first rounder.  

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1 minute ago, Frobby said:

Beavers is a first rounder.  

Comp balance pick, like Westburg. Maybe they don't count for this question but they are great value for those picks. Etzel is another interesting one 

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I agree with the idea of targeting high-upside overslot high school bats instead of college bats once you get past the first couple of rounds.  It's probably worth using a few top 10 picks on college seniors with low ceilings just to get enough slot savings to take a shot a the next Coby Mayo.  

I still think that the biggest weakness of our farm system is the imbalance between hitting and pitching prospects.  The front office did finally invest more draft capital in pitching last year; it's too soon to see how it will work out.  They may need to get some fresh blood on the scouting and development side when it comes to pitching.  

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