# Daily Notes, In Which Darin Ruf Figures Prominently

Regarding What Is SCOUT, First of All
SCOUT is a (likely absurd, admittedly unnecessary) metric designed by the author to assess performance in those instances — like in a minor league, for example — where small samples are ubiquitous.

The Offensive Version of SCOUT, How It’s Calculated
The offensive version of SCOUT — represented as SCOUT+, where 100 is league average and above 100 is above average — is essentially a version of wRC+, except using the three main defense-independent metrics (home-run, walk, and strikeout rates), all regressed duly*, as the inputs.

*By the method outlined here.

The Pitching Version of SCOUT, How It’s Calculated
The pitching version of SCOUT — represented as SCOUT-, where 100 is league average and below 100 represents above-average run prevention — is calculated using a version of kwERA, with regressed strikeout and walk rates as the relevant inputs.

Regarding SCOUT, One of Its Benefits
A benefit of SCOUT is it allows one to compare the relative performances of players with markedly different sample sizes — to compare, for example, the performance of Pirates prospect Jameson Taillon (17.0 IP, 29.0% K, 1.6 % BB) to Yankees left-hander Vidal Nuno (114.0 IP, 21.5% K, 5.8% BB).

Regarding the Eastern League, Its Regular Season
The Eastern League’s regular season ended on September 3rd, it appears. As such, all following numbers are final for 2012.

Top Batters of the Eastern League (Overall)
Here are the top-10 batters of the Double-A Eastern League, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age PA xHR% xBB% xK% SCOUT+
Darin Ruf Phillies (AA) 25 583 6.5% 11.1% 17.5% 166
Rhyne Hughes Orioles (AA) 28 313 4.2% 13.1% 23.6% 132
Ryan Schimpf Blue Jays (AA) 24 137 3.7% 14.2% 23.0% 131
Allan Dykstra Mets (AA) 25 248 2.7% 20.6% 26.2% 131
Jared Goedert Indians (AA) 27 145 2.7% 12.3% 14.0% 131
Juan Carlos Linares Red Sox (AA) 27 238 3.1% 9.2% 12.6% 129
Deibinson Romero Twins (AA) 25 548 3.5% 10.9% 17.7% 129
Zelous Wheeler Orioles (AA) 25 389 3.3% 9.8% 16.2% 127
Reynaldo Rodriguez Red Sox (AA) 26 367 4.4% 9.5% 22.1% 126
Luke Murton Yankees (AA) 26 526 4.8% 8.4% 22.8% 126

Top Batters of the Eastern League (Aged 23 and Under)
Here are the top-10 batters of the Double-A Eastern League who might still, because of their age relative to the level, be considered prospects — again, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age PA xHR% xBB% xK% SCOUT+
Wilmer Flores Mets (AA) 20 275 2.8% 7.3% 10.9% 124
Michael Mcdade Blue Jays (AA) 23 429 3.5% 10.0% 19.8% 122
Cody Johnson Yankees (AA) 23 253 5.6% 11.9% 35.6% 122
Manny Machado Orioles (AA) 19 459 2.4% 10.5% 15.3% 119
Corban Joseph Yankees (AA) 23 102 2.0% 11.7% 14.7% 119
Jackie Bradley Red Sox (AA) 22 271 2.2% 12.9% 18.1% 119
Aaron Hicks Twins (AA) 22 563 2.3% 13.9% 20.4% 118
John Tolisano Blue Jays (AA) 23 497 2.4% 10.7% 16.5% 118
Andrew Lambo Pirates (AA) 23 108 2.6% 10.9% 18.0% 118
Zoilo Almonte Yankees (AA) 23 450 4.7% 5.6% 22.7% 117

Top Pitchers of the Eastern League (Overall)
Here are the top-10 pitchers of the Double-A Eastern League, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age IP TBF xK% xBB% SCOUT-
Pedro Viola Orioles (AA) 29 32.1 128 36.1% 8.0% 47
Bryce Stowell Indians (AA) 25 29.0 117 33.5% 8.3% 56
Brett Bochy Giants (AA) 24 53.1 205 33.7% 8.6% 57
Mark Montgomery Yankees (AA) 21 24.0 91 32.8% 8.2% 58
Kyler Newby Orioles (AA) 27 55.1 223 33.2% 8.9% 59
Victor Black Pirates (AA) 24 60.0 249 34.1% 9.9% 59
Lisalverto Bonilla Phillies (AA) 22 34.1 137 33.6% 9.5% 59
Josh Fields Red Sox (AA) 26 44.2 182 32.4% 8.6% 60
Aaron Kurcz Red Sox (AA) 21 50.1 224 32.1% 9.9% 65
Michael Olmsted Red Sox (AA) 25 20.0 80 29.5% 8.5% 69

Top Pitchers of the Eastern League (Starters Only)
Here are the top-10 pitchers in the Double-A Eastern League who made at least half of their appearances as starts — again, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age IP TBF xK% xBB% SCOUT-
Kyle McPherson Pirates (AA) 24 48.2 204 22.5% 6.3% 83
Chris Heston Giants (AA) 24 148.2 595 22.7% 6.7% 84
Zack Wheeler Mets (AA) 22 116.0 474 24.7% 9.0% 85
Jameson Taillon Pirates (AA) 20 17.0 62 23.1% 7.7% 86
Vidal Nuno Yankees (AA) 24 114.0 465 21.5% 6.2% 87
David Phelps Yankees (AA) 25 6.2 22 23.4% 8.3% 87
Gerrit Cole Pirates (AA) 21 59.0 252 23.8% 8.8% 87
Yohan Pino Blue Jays (AA) 28 134.0 552 20.1% 5.3% 88
Paolo Espino Indians (AA) 25 116.1 481 22.0% 7.2% 88
Sean Nolin Blue Jays (AA) 22 15.0 60 23.3% 8.7% 88

Three Notable Performances
Darin Ruf hit 38 home runs this season with Double-A Reading — or, 13 more than the next batter (in this case, Yankees minor leaguer Luke Murton) on the list. At 25, Ruf was old for the level this year. Also, as a Google Image search reveals, he does not have a particularly athletic frame, meaning he’s relegated to first base or, perhaps, a corner-outfield spot. Recently promoted, Ruf has yet to make his first major-league plate appearance — although, he seems certainly to have solved the riddle of Double-A pitching, at this point.
• By most every measure, Mets infielder Wilmer Flores was better following his promotion to Double-A Binghamton this season than before it, at St. Lucie of the High-A Florida State League. His walk rate was higher; his strikeout rate, lower; and he had higher on-base and slugging percentages — and all of them are improvements over his 2011 season at St. Lucie. With his size and relative lack of athleticism, Flores was forced to move off of shortstop this season, but the other indicators — including his age (20 for most of the season) relative to level — are quite positive.
• Yankees quasi-second-base prospect Corban Joseph, 23, was also among the SCOUT offensive leaders for the Triple-A International League. Insofar as (a) his defensive position isn’t entirely clear and (b) he plays for the Yankees, his major-league future is uncertain for the moment. Still, given his offensive approach, he could have value as just as Mark DeRosa-type infield-outfield utility player, which is a thing that helps teams.

International League (Triple-A)
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)
Southern League (Double-A)
Texas League (Double-A)
California, Carolina, and Florida State Leagues Combined (High-A)
Midwest and Sally Leagues Combined (Class-A)
New York-Penn and Northwest Leagues Combined (Low-A)
Appalachian, Arizona, Gulf Coast, and Pioneer Leagues Combined (Rookie)

Today’s Notable Games
Seattle at Toronto | 19:07 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
Here’s a Status Update for highly rated and overwhelmingly athletic Toronto prospect Anthony Gose (through Monday): 104 PA, 5.8% BB, 36.5% K, .223/.284/.330 (.364 BABIP), 84 wRC+, 0.2 WAR.

Detroit at Chicago AL | 20:10 ET
Right-hander and avant-garde sportsman Max Scherzer (170.2 IP, 76 xFIP-, 4.0 WAR) starts this game that has Postseason Implications.

Today’s Complete Schedule
Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. The average NERD Game Score for today is 3.7.

Note: the following Game Scores include the poorly conceived playoff-odds adjustment discussed in a recent edition of Daily Notes. Also note: the following table is entirely sortable.

Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Josh Johnson MIA 7 4 5 4 10 PHI Cliff Lee 16:05
Kyle Lohse STL 4 9 4 7 4 SD Clayton Richard 18:35
Alex Cobb TB 7 6 6 2 3 BAL Miguel Gonzalez 19:05
Kevin Millwood SEA 2 4 1 5 2 TOR Ricky Romero 19:07
David Phelps NYA 5 6 3 5 2 BOS Aaron Cook 19:10
A.J. Burnett PIT 8 4 5 4 6 CIN Homer Bailey 19:10
John Lannan* WAS 3 7 4 2 10 NYN Matt Harvey 19:10
Travis Wood CHN 2 1 1 4 4 HOU Fernando Abad* 20:05
Jeanmar Gomez CLE 1 2 2 7 6 TEX Ryan Dempster 20:05
Paul Maholm ATL 4 7 4 9 6 MIL Yovani Gallardo 20:10
Max Scherzer DET 10 4 6 5 3 CHA Gavin Floyd 20:10
Luke Hochevar KC 5 7 2 5 2 MIN P.J. Walters 20:10
Tim Lincecum SF 7 3 4 7 5 COL Jeff Francis 20:40
Aaron Harang LAN 1 1 3 6 6 AZ Trevor Cahill 21:40
A.J. Griffin OAK 7 6 6 8 3 LAA Ervin Santana 22:05