Saturday, December 21, 2013

Season 23 - Amateur Draft - First Round Review

Courtesy of hurricane384...thanks for putting this together!

1.            2B Bill Fick – Fargo Bison
Solid range and glove. Weak arm. A true leadoff type who won’t strike out much, but can get on base. Not outstanding at driving the ball. Very fast.

2.            RHP George Priddy – Louisville Cardinals
Solid control. Solid combination of pitches. Decent splits. Solid stamina/durability. A little lacking for the #2 pick, but should be a solid contributor.

3.            RHP Charles Dean – Chicago Blue Demons
Tremendous splits. Solid control. Great stamina. Only 3 pitches and below average durability. Might struggle as a starter.

4.            CF Bill Palmer – Kansas City Wildcats
Remains unsigned as of press time.

5.            RHP Anthony Painter – Detroit Wolverines
Great control. Solid splits. Doesn’t throw hard. Average GB pitcher. Good pitches. Typically don’t like relievers this high, but knowing what the draft looked like, this was a solid pick.

6.            LF Lance Owens – Memphis Tigers
Solid power. Will strike out. Good range. Good arm. Great speed. Dominates RHP. Average eye.

mh17 says: It will be interesting to see Owens develop. Lance has good power and ability hitting lefties and rights, but seeing the ball and making contact may hinder his production, great speed but base running is questionable, and he’ll be very durable if he can avoid injuries. Would like to see him develop his defense a little more. Overall we are content with our selection.

7.            C Pedro Rosario – Boise Broncos

Tremendous defensive catcher. Great durability. Will struggle against RHP but should dominate LHP and won’t strike out much. Can definitely reach base. Fast for a C.
abesmem says: Boise was very happy to grab C, Pedro Rosario with the 7th overall pick. Pedro projects to be an “every day” backstop with solid defensive and pitch calling skills. He is no slouch at the place either with average power, good contact projections and a better than average eye at the plate. Pedro is already fairly well along in his development and is starting out in the organization at AA. He could be up with the big club in 2 years or less.

8.            RHP P.T. Durazo – Iowa City Hawkeyes

Tremendous stamina/durability. Solid control. Good splits. Keeps ball down. Underwhelming pitches.

9.            SS Fred Josephs – Huntington Thundering Herd

10.        P Deacon Ball – Helena Grizzlies
Remains unsigned as of press time.

11.        LF Al Brandt – Cincinnati Bearcats

Great power and dominant against RHP. Will struggles against LHP. Won’t strike out much. Average eye. Not much on defense.

allright says: Al Brandt has numbers that suggest that he will be a power hitter. He does not pull enough to be a 50 homer/year type; but he projects to be a solid 30+ homer hitter. He should handle RHP and maintain a high OBP. A solid prospect who should make The Show in 3 or 4 seasons. No HOF in his future, maybe not even an all-star; but, a solid ML contributor as a # 5 or #6 in the lineup.

12.        2B Luis Morlan – New Orleans Bayou Bengals

Dominates LHP. Will struggle against RHP. Great speed. Lacks durability. Solid defender who could fill in at several positions. Solid contact. Solid eye. Decent power.

13.        CF Gregg Wells – Philadelphia Owls

Tremendous power. Solid eye. Solid splits. Lacks top-end range, but good enough to be an everyday CF. Great glove. Great speed. Will strike out some.

14.        C Pepe Zurbaran – Texas Tech Red Raiders

Doesn’t call a great game but has a solid arm. Good power. Won’t strike out too much. Solid splits. Not good with the strike zone.

15.        RHP Roger Urich – Jackson Rebels

Lacks any semblance of control. Solid stamina & durability. Better against RHP than LHP. Great pitches and keeps the ball down.

16.        P Joey Camili – Oakland Golden Bears
Unsigned as of press time.

17.        RHP Rob Ray – Anaheim Trojans

Tremendous stamina/durability combination. Solid control. Only 3 pitches. Solid velocity & splits.

18.        3B Damon Wells – Nashville Commodores

Solid defensively. Average power and contact. Dominates LHP. Average against RHP. Average eye. Average pick here.

19.        3B Ahmad Russell – Little Rock Razorbacks

Lacks ideal range, but has a solid glove and good arm. Drives the ball well. Can work the count. Decent power. Strikes out a lot. Not durable.

20.        3B Lonny Lyles – Portland Ducks

Tremendous power. Drives the ball extremely well. Good range, great arm. Lacks ideal glove. Will strike out. Might be the steal of the draft.

21.        RHP Lou Jamison – Columbus Buckeyes

Tremendous control. Will get pounded on the ML level due to his inability to keep the ball out of hitting zone. Decent pitches. Doesn’t throw hard. Somewhat of a head-scratcher.

22.        RHP Dwight May – Seattle Huskies

Unsigned as of press time.

mcgupp says: He is projected as a lock down closer prospect. Unsure at this point if we will get him signed.

23.        RHP Buddy Swann – Buffalo Bulls

Great control. Throws hard. Solid stamina. Decent at keeping the ball out of hitting zone. Solid pitches. Keeps ball down.

24.        LHP Randy Montana – New York Red Storm

Average control. Can go deep into games. Solid splits. Throws hard. Flyball pitcher. Great pitches.

mamidu says: He decided to sign. I feel lucky to have landed him at #24. Has decent control and his splits project to be very good vL and above average vR with very good velocity. I have him projected to have 2 great pitches with the 3rd being average. I think he'll be a decent #3 SP.
25.        RF Erick Wright – Dover Fightin Blue Hens

Great arm. Really struggles against RHP. Average all around. Fast and a great baserunner.

26.        P Yonder Rodriguez – Charleston Cougars

Unsigned as of press time.

dgtrache says: Charleston would prefer that Yonder Rodriguez pursue his hockey career rather than accept the team's qualifying offer. Should he decide to play baseball, he has the potential to be a decent set-up man.

27.        RHP Manuel Quentin – Louisville Cardinals

Lacks ideal control. Throws hard and keeps the ball down in the zone. Keeps ball out of hitting zone. Great stamina/durability. Only 3 pitches. Could be a good one.

28.        RHP Derrick Velandia – Seattle Huskies

Dominant against RHP. Throws softly but keeps ball down. Lacks good control. Bit of a ‘tweener. Decent pitches.

29.        RF Vernon Blake – Salem Beavers

Makes a ton of contact. Lacks power. Struggles against LHP but does well against RHP. Good eye. Good baserunner with speed. Definitely a COF defensively.

30.  LHP Buddy Counsell – Charlotte Tar Heels
Tremendous control. 3 good pitches. Keeps ball down. Solid at keeping it out of hitting zone. Decent durability & stamina. Doesn’t throw hard at all.
hopkinsheel says: Pretty happy getting Counsell so late in the first round. We think he can be a solid addition to our bullpen one day

31.  RF Cory Gabriel – Syracuse Orange

Tremendous glove with solid range. Decent at making contact. Drives the ball average. Average eye. Tremenous speed.

Evil Doers says: One of the drawbacks of having a very successful regular season is of course, the low draft pick the next year. Having said that, the Orange are optimistic with the pick of Cory Gabriel. Some scouts had him as an up-the-middle player early in their reports but it appears that's not the case. The speedster would be a great addition if he was. He might not have the power for a corner position but he'll still make a nice addition to the school, even as a higher profile role-player if nothing else.
32.        RHP Bruce Nielsen – Richmond Spiders

Great control. Solid stamina/durability. Good pitches. Doesn’t throw hard and is a flyball pitcher. Does a decent job keeping ball out of hitting zone.

33.  RHP Brian Barnum – Minnesota Golden Gophers

Unsigned as of press time.

bighead34 says: really happy with Brian Barnum considering the lack of talent in this draft. hoping he can be an above average LRA if he signs...had him ranked 4th overall, but with limited scouting not sure how accurate my projections are...regardless he seems destined to be a MLer.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Top RF

TOP RF courtesy of hurricane384

1. Franklin Cornelius (LR)
Far and away the best hitter in RF, maybe in the world, Cornelius doesn't strike out, hits for elite power, and can work the count. He drives the ball well. Has a good arm.

Franklin Cornelius
Little Rock
Age: 28B/T: S/L
Born: Hammond, WI
Position(s): RF/1B/LF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Justin Crosby (IA)
Has elite power. Makes good contact. Drives the ball well. Has a good eye. Very good defensive RF.

Justin Crosby
Iowa City
Age: 28B/T: L/L
Born: Oakland, NJ
Position(s): RF/1B/LF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Doug Sullivan (HUN)
Struggles against RHP but dominates LHP. Strikes out at a little bit higher clip than most, but has power to make up for it. He knows how to work the count. Not a good defender.

Doug Sullivan
Thundering Herd
Age: 31B/T: R/R
Born: Phoenix, AZ
Position(s): RF/1B/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Brian Komatsu (RIC)
5. Marino Terrero (NY2)
6. Terrence Shields (CH2)
7. Dante Itou (CHA)
8. Gorkys James (BOI)
9. Paul Igarashi (HEL)
10. Mateo Lugo (PHI)

Friday, November 15, 2013


Top CF courtesy of hurricane384

1. Albert Garza (FAR)
Although not an elite defender, Garza makes up for that with a great eye and good ratings across the board. He is weaker against RHP than he is against LHP. Good power and good contact. Good speed and good baserunner.

Albert Garza
Age: 31B/T: R/R
Born: Barahona, DO
Position(s): CF/IF/OF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Markus Crosby (HUN)
Has quality range and a solid glove. Doesn't strike out too much. Has some power. Drives the ball well. Has a good eye. Runs the bases poorly, but at least he's fast.

Markus Crosby
Thundering Herd
Age: 28B/T: S/R
Born: Muldrow, OK
Position(s): CF/1B/MIF/OF
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Bernie Diaz (MIN)
Dominates RHP while doing well against LHP. Average power. Makes solid contact usually. Has the range for CF but lacks the glove. Average speed. Solid eye.

Bernie Diaz
Golden Gophers
Age: 28B/T: S/R
Born: Santo Domingo, DO
Position(s): CF/2B
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Craig Parrish (CHR)
5. Benji Ramirez (BUF)
6. Henry Knight (RIC)
7. Jaime Lowery (DOV)
8. Len Whitesell (CIN)
9. Geoff Snyder (OAK)
10. Dwight Wood (LOU)

Thursday, November 14, 2013


Top LF courtesy of hurricane384

1. Doug Treadway (ARI)
Treadway rarely strikes out while maintaining elite power. He drives the ball consistently. He's got an above average eye. Good baserunner...good range in the field, even if his glove leaves something to be desired.

Doug Treadway
Age: 23B/T: L/L
Born: Grinnell, IA
Position(s): LF/1B/RF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Tomas Olmedo (CHA)
Olmedo doesn't strike out too much. Has solid power to go along with a very good eye. Drives the ball well. Has good speed and is a good baserunner. Mediocre defender.

Tomas Olmedo
Tar Heels
Age: 33B/T: S/R
Born: Remidios, CU
Position(s): LF/1B/RF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Miguel Cerda (CHR)
Doesn't strike out much and has solid power. Struggles against LHP.  Tremendous eye with great speed and baserunning combo.

Miguel Cerda
Age: 28B/T: L/L
Born: Ciudad Juarez, MX
Position(s): LF/1B/RF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Angel Sanchez (SAL)
5. Hugh Bell (MEM)
6. Andrea Nelson (HUN)
7. Eliezer Arrojo (OAK)
8. Jimmie Delgado (FAR)
9. Wandy Cedeno (LAA)
10. Endy Latham (LOU)

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Top SS

Top SS courtesy of hurricane384

1. Melky Baez (DOV)
Lacks ideal defensive ability to be a SS, but more than makes up for it with great offensive ability. Power, average, XBH, he does it all...except for maybe work the count.

Melky Baez
Fightin Blue Hens
Age: 26B/T: R/R
Born: Cabimas, VE
Position(s): SS/3B/2B/OF
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Pedro Gonzales (POR)
Tremendous power. Dominates LHP but struggles against RHP. Doesn't strike out but can't work the count too well. Struggles defensively, but his offensive ability makes up for it.

Pedro Gonzales
Age: 25B/T: R/R
Born: Don Gregorio, DO
Position(s): SS/IF/OF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Eddie Padden (BUF)
Strikes out a lot, but has solid power, Drives the ball well. Works the count. Solid but not spectacular defender.

Eddie Padden
Age: 32B/T: L/R
Born: Milwaukee, WI
Position(s): SS/IF/OF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Felix Dunston (NY2)
5. Christopher Jenkins (MEM)
6. Buck Justice (CIN)
7. Juan Dali (PHI)
8. Collin Hartley (RIC)
9. Fernando Segui (JAC)
10. Emmanuel Villa (PHI)

Friday, November 8, 2013

Top 3B

Top 3B courtesy of hurricane 384

1. Frieri Santiago (PHI)
Doesn't strike out. Hits for good power. Drives the ball well. Can work the count. Is a good defender.

Frieri Santiago
Age: 30B/T: R/R
Born: Marietta, OH
Position(s): 3B
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Douglas Lawrie (DET)
Drives the ball well against LHP while being solid against RHP. Has a good eye. Very good defender. Good power. Good contact.

Douglas Lawrie
Age: 24B/T: L/R
Born: Boston, MA
Position(s): 3B
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Luis Cortes (CHA)
Big-time power. Makes solid contact. Drives the ball well. Solid eye. Good defender.

Luis Cortes
Tar Heels
Age: 27B/T: S/R
Born: Ciudad Obregon, MX
Position(s): 3B/IF/OF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Philip Rigby (OAK)
5. Danny Smoltz (LR)
6. Odalis Velazquez (NY2)
7. Ebenezer Zimmerman (BUF)
8. Tony Kim (LAA)
9. Juan Gonzalez (MIN)
10. Milton Hermanson (SAL)

Top 2B

Top 2B courtesy of hurricane384

1. Saul Martin (CHR)
Martin has the speed to lead off, the power to anchor a lineup and the eye to get on base. Drives the ball well. Doesn't strike out too much. Plays solid defense.

Saul Martin
Age: 25B/T: R/R
Born: Boca Chica, DO
Position(s): 2B/CIF/OF/DH
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

2. Ezdra Pena (MIN)
Pena lacks power, but makes up for it with the ability to drive the ball well and get on base. When on base he has the speed and baserunning chops to do some damage. Solid defender. 

Ezdra Pena
Golden Gophers
Age: 27B/T: R/R
Born: El Seibo, DO
Position(s): LF/2B/RF
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

3. Jesus Elcano (MIN) 
Makes a lot of contact, but not much power. Drives the ball well against LHP but not so great against RHP. Has a tremendous eye. Great speed and baserunning ability. Solid defender.

Jesus Elcano
Golden Gophers
Age: 24B/T: S/R
Born: El Seibo, DO
Position(s): 2B
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

4. Terrell Kelly (PHI)
5. Brad Holt (RIC)
6. Arthur Haynes (CHA)
7. Les Rivera (CLB)
8. Dee Thompson (JAC)
9. Ricardo Ortiz (RIC)
10. Daryl Litsch (LR)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Season 23 Previews - Part 2

Richmond Spiders

Last season was obviously our big step out of the rebuild and into the competition at the top of the world. The ensuing playoff run resulted in Richmond’s first title. Coming into this season, there was pretty much one overriding theme: “If it isn’t broke…”

We didn’t have any free agents from last year’s team, and we didn’t bring anyone in either. Improvement will still come, but internally only. First, the team is still young enough that several of the position players are still on the upswing, so many of the guys from last year look even better this season. Then second, former first-round pick Ralph Small will be called up to man the hot corner full time. We almost pulled the trigger on Ralph at the end of last season, but ultimately decided to give him another offseason and spring training to develop. He will push some guys to more full-time bench roles, which should in turn improve the bench and overall depth.

We hope to make the playoffs again and then take a shot at defending the championship.

Kansas City Wildcats

The Kansas City Wildcats are still rebuilding. There are several players in the minors Louie Cook, Benny Ingram, Joc Patterson, and Harold K'aaihue that will be ready for the big club in the near future.The outlook for this year is trying to win 81 games.

Anaheim Trojans

Key Additions: Darrell Haywood (should fill the 4th or fifth starters roll), Albie Tejeda (a veteran who will play everyday until we promote some rookies)

Key Losses:None

Rookies to be called up: Vincente Carreras, Frank Pence 

We expect continued improvement this year. A possible wild card run if all goes well. The offense led by Wandy Cedeno, Tony Kim, and the rookie Carreras should be good enough to keep us in most games. The bullpen will once again be a strength, led by Buzz Beirne. The unknown for this team is starting pitching. There is some talent, but they are young and unproven. There is no starting pitching in the minors so we will have to live and die with the guys currently on the roster.

Cincinnati Bearcats

The Bearcats, sufferers from sub-500 seasons in a division that leaves no room for errors, appear to be on the road to recovery. Recovery, in this case, means a pulse and not a healthy heartbeat. Minnesota will be, well, Minnesota. Portland and Fargo are in building programs that have infused more talent into the Majors than the Bearcats have, so, the Bearcats promise to be better; but, nobody around here expects them to make the playoffs. There are just too many intra-division hurdles to clear.

Last year saw the 'Cats add some positive young talent. Albie Gomez (ss) and Jerry Hume (2b) give the 'Cats the best defensive keystone duo in the league. Jalal Bowman (dh and backup catcher) showed real power potential and promises to be a good fit for the home ballpark. Ricardo Arias (p) made a contribution to the starting staff and should be a reliable #4 starter.

This year, rookie Len Whitesell (cf) will be around for the full season. He had a cup of coffee in the Bigs last season and demonstrated the kind of top of the order offensive punch the 'Cats so sorely need.
Young arms in the bullpen had banner years. Beltre, Calderone, Song, and Lee had 1.92, 2.59,2.31, and 2.62 ERA's, respectively. Song added 36 saves.

The 'Cats have good reason for not being ready for prime time. Needs include a reliable left hand presence out of the pen, a #1 starter, and more punch out of the corner positions. The old problem of firing blanks in the draft has been cured. The last couple of drafts yielded excellent prospects. Incremental improvement is expected.

Memphis Tigers

Key Acquisitions: None
Key Players Lost: Ralph Myette SP (FA), Roger Herndon LF (Declined option)
The Tigers will return virtually the same lineup that finished 4th in the division last year, with Roger Herndon being the lone missing bat from last season. Management opted to let Herndon walk to free up salary in hopes of adding more power to the lineup, but fell short in those plans. The pitching staff will have a similar look as well. Chili Carver will continue to develop and gain experience while proving to be the ace of the staff. Cameron Cardona enters the rotation taking over for Myette, whom the Tigers had originally hoped to retain. Expectations entering the season will be mediocre at best, but Memphis will remain optimistic on improving upon last season.

Columbus Buckeyes

 Last season included a 12 win improvement over the prior season, another .500+ finish, and another 2nd place division finish, the 5th 2nd place finsih in 7 seasons with tdfactory at the helm. Fans are a bit restless and looking to make the playoffs again, but do acknowledge Coach tdfactory has put the program in better position than the first 15 years of the program prior to his arrival. 

Not many changes in Columbus this year from a player movement standpoint. P ALbert Rincon tested the FA market but ultimately returned to CLB. THe Bucks added backup C Che Jung and slected Utilitly infiielder Kevin McConnell from Louisvill int he Rule V draft. No players were lost to FA.

Former first round pick in Season 17, Hector Narveson, had an impressive Rookie campaign, appearing in 62 games, with a 9-2 record and 1 save, pithcing in 112 innings with a 2.88 ERA. Former Buck P-Dallas Parrott returned through trade to CLB last season from Huntington and is expected to add to a rotation that is veteran laden. Joey Delucci returns for one more season to be the closer, and former first rounder in Season 18, Stephen Harvey is expected to improve his contribution in the bullpen. 

In the field, 3B Thomas Fogg continues to be the main power source, with 1B Danny Sheffield looking to add to the Bucks offense in his 2nd season in CLB. Last seasons big FA acquisition, CF Everett Wood went down in spring training and missed over half of the season. When he was ready to go, he found that he had lost his job to a younger CF Al Bristow, who led off, had a .361 OBP and stole 64 bases, while adding 28 RBI and batting a respectable .278. Wood returned but only appeared in 85 games and never found his groove, hitting only .199 with 6 HR's. 
TDfactory hasnt decided at press time who will man the middle of the outfield, but both players are looking over their shoulder at pressure coming up from the farm. Two top prospects for the Bucks roam the great middle. Freddie Urich was a first round selection in Season 20 and had an outstanding season in AAA last year, belting 34 HR's, 108 RBI, stealing 28 bags, and hitting .271. This writer feels the veteran Wood will get the start, but if he falters, Bristow has proven he can handle the job, but most likely a flatering Wood would be dealt and Urich would get a chance to take over. How long Urich has the job or Bristow is with the club depends on this seasons development of top pick Bill Daily, who will start the season in AA. He has potential, some solid power, a good eye and will give right handed pitchers plenty of headaches. THe Bucks don't want to rush him, but expectations for his career are high. 

The Bucks took a minimal change approach this offseason, expecting the veteran rotation to be able to hang on for another season and for the young fielders to continue to develop. It will either pay off with a playoff run, or if the Bucks are too far back at the trade deadline, some big names and contracts could be dealt. Should be an interesting season in Columbus.

Iowa City Hawkeyes

Not a whole lot to update with the Iowa franchise. Still looking for that elusive SP Crosby is getting older lost a veteran and only have 1 rookie worth bringing up.

Decided not to spend a lot of money on free agents and keep some for possible trades through the season. As well I will be looking for the SP on international market I hope.

Jackson Rebels

The Jackson Rebels had a very quiet off season outside of picking up Fernando Segui's option, there were no major moves.

Of course, the glue to this team is slugging RF Lyle Daly, Daly is looking to bounce back from the knee injury that caused him to miss out on the last 50+ games last season. Before the injury, he was well on his way to a career year (40 HRs, 94 RBI, 36 SB). Also looking to bounce back from injury is the young lefty Jordan Stephens...his injury occurred in his sixth start and he was out for the year. However, Yonder Santos is the ace of the staff and this has to be the year he starts earning that hefty paycheck. With closer Nash Messmer once again anchoring the bullpen, things look bright.

Hopes are high for this season, but then I again I say that every season and there is always a stretch that dooms the season.