Eric Longenhagen Chat – 2/28/19

2:00
Eric A Longenhagen: Howdy everyone, let’s dive right in so I can finish the A’s list after we’re done.

2:00
JD: I’m sure it’s different from position to position, but if you had to put an overall defensive grade on a player, how would you weigh their arm and field tools?

2:02
Eric A Longenhagen: Arm is it’s own thing, though I’d like to break defense into multiple categories — hands, feet, range, maybe actions too if you consider those separate from hands. You could look at those categories and know which positions a player is athletically capable of playing and how well instead of getting confused by the way different tools impact others like…

2:02
Darren: Normally, speed guys are supposed to be good defenders. What keeps a guy like CJ Abrams at a 50 FV as a fielder?

2:04
Eric A Longenhagen: We have Abrams evaluated at SS right now but he has issues throwing from those weird athletic platforms that shortstops need to be able to throw from to be really good there. So he has elite range, his hands are fine, his windup/max effort arm strength is good, but he still may not be all that great at short because he can’t make these types of throws

2:05
Santa’s Reindeer: When’s your first mock draft coming out?

2:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Not for a while, they’re just clickbait at this point

2:05
T.Y: If Bryse Wilson doesn’t win the 5th starter spot, but is sent to the big league bullpen does that all but close the book on him as a starter?

2:06
Eric A Longenhagen: nah, far too young for that kind of thinking

2:06
No foot: I’m sure you’ve seen and have reports on Chris Paddack from 2018, but please… what were your initial thoughts on him the other day seeing Majorleaguers?

2:07
Eric A Longenhagen: Bien, as expected. velo, angle, command, plus-plus change, 5 curve on occasion

2:07
Nico: I understand the Jays want to build up value of guys like Richard and Shoemaker, but why not just ride with both Borucki and Reid-Foley in the opening day rotation to see what you’ve got?

2:08
Eric A Longenhagen: The reason you state is arguably sufficient, but I also get that you wanna see the younger dudes.

2:09
Ford: Is there a demographic with more pop-up guys than others? Whether it’s pre-draft or once they’re in the minors

2:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Pre-draft, and this is a combo of logic and anecdotal thinking I haven’t studied this or anything, it’s probably HS arms. Teenagers are undergoing more rapid physical development on the average and uptick in talent (velo, especially) is easy to measure and pay attention to. For pro prospects it’s probably swing changers now.

2:11
We Got Lebron!!!!: So the O’s trade Int’l $$$ for David Lebron. Is this backsliding into old bad habits, or is there something to like in the late-round arm? Thanks!

2:12
Eric A Longenhagen: I plan on poking around Lebron when we do the rest of the Rangers system. Ask again next week.

2:13
Ford: Quick report on Kyren Paris? Any other Bay Area high schoolers of note? (filtering by state would be an awesome addition to the board, if possible)

2:14
Eric A Longenhagen: One of the younger HSers in the draft, above run, above arm, 2B/SS fit, pretty quick bat, frame limits power projection somewhat (he’s 5-11) but in our 2nd round mix on the board right now

2:15
Stinky Cheddar: What are your favourite under the radar spring training battles?

2:16
Eric A Longenhagen: DBacks pitching staff stuff, Rockies Tapia/Dahl/Desmond/McMahon/Murphy/etc situation, ‘Stros 5th starter and bench situation w/o Marwin

2:16
Dale: Longtime Phillies fan and get to the affiliates a few times a season. Was really impressed with some of the arms in the system. Are Kyle Dohy or Zach Warren big league options at any point this season?

2:16
Eric A Longenhagen: I’d set the over/under at one of them getting there this year

2:16
Jake: Will DJ Peters swing and miss issues relegate him to a bench bat or does he mash enough/play ok defense to overcome the weak average?

2:17
Eric A Longenhagen: I think he plays everyday but might be volatile, year-to-year, like Michael Taylor and those types

2:17
JaKob: I’m intrigued by the report on Stiward Aquino, SP LAA.. does this guy have a legit chance to be a “dude”?

2:17
Eric A Longenhagen: of course, it’s why we stuck him where we did

2:17
Sad Cleveland: Does Oscar Mercado for Jhon Torres really make much sense? Why deal a low level OF for a 40-man OF? Is Mercado’s bat going to hold up in MLB?

2:18
Eric A Longenhagen: It makes lots of logical sense, CLE knew they were going to be thin in the OF and they flipped a player several years away for someone who can help them right away. In a vacuum I take Torres, but teams don’t operate in a vacuum.

2:18
Chase Utley’s Good Looks: Are there some prospects you know of that will be debuting swing changes this year? Excited to see any in particular?

2:19
Eric A Longenhagen: No idea. If big leaguers have made changes I haven’t noticed (Thaiss is opening up more than last year, I guess) and minor league games don’t start until March 12thish so nothing yet.

2:20
Scotty: Hey Eric, what are your thoughts about Vandy’s Austin Martin for next years draft class?

2:22
Eric A Longenhagen: Took great ABs here in AZ opening weekend, plus athlete, love that he can play all over, hands aren’t especially explosive not sure he’ll have big offensive impact just yet.

2:22
careagan: Hey Eric, thanks for the chat. MLB Pipeline’s report on Dennis Santana said one organization views him as the Dodgers best prospect. Which org do you think that is?

2:24
Eric A Longenhagen: My educated guess points toward teams that want ready upper-level pitching so I guessed Cubs but Jim just told me that’s wrong.

2:24
JaKob: I asked Kiley yesterday, but wanted your opinion as well.. if we re-drafted the 2018 class.. which guys would be the biggest risers? And who was a guy you were lower on, but has changed your opinion this early (if any, since a fairly small sample).. as always thanks Eric!

2:25
Eric A Longenhagen: Gus Varland, Aaron Ashby, Ross Adolph, generally guys from smaller schools who we’ve learned more about in pro ball

2:25
Roger: Can Shed Long realistically get major time in the bigs and where would that be?

2:25
Eric A Longenhagen: yes, in a multi-positional role

2:27
Tobias: If draft picks were able to be traded what player would be equal value for the #1 overall pick?

2:28
Eric A Longenhagen: In the big leagues? It probably takes the right combo of remaining control and talent as well as the right team picking #1. Like who would BAL trade #1 for? Do you think they’re trading it for two seasons of Trout?

2:29
Eric A Longenhagen: Generally the top pick is a 55 or 60 FV player, so you can argue any of the prospects we have in that range are worthy of swapping for 1-1

2:30
DJ: Hunter Bishop’s arm is listed here as a 55, but multiple longtime ASU fans report it’s the worst they’ve seen from a regular OF in years. Have you seen it in person?

2:30
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes it’s a 3 right now and we’ll change it

2:30
Adell’s arm: really only a 50 future? He threw 97 in HS and the reports show that all concerns are gone. Should be at least 60, closer to 65

2:30
Eric A Longenhagen: Popped 1.9 on Sunday, will also be changed. Just working on OAK right now folks

2:31
Jay: What does a typical day look like for you during spring training

2:31
Eric A Longenhagen: the craziest days will be day milb st games, afternoon big league games, night college or HS games with writing in press boxes in between

2:32
Mike: What makes Dustin May better than tony gonsolin? Feel like gonsolin’s splitter is the best overall pitch, feels like they should be closer than their rankings are.

2:34
Eric A Longenhagen: Age is a huge factor for us since we’re looking at a six-year window of production. May is the age of a college draft prospect, Gonsolin turns 25 in May. The latter may hit his decline phase during that six-year window. That needs to be considered.

2:35
Roger: You listed Jordan Holloway as one SP that could hit 2020 lists. What do you like about him and would he just have to remain healthy this year to get there?

2:36
Eric A Longenhagen: Like the velo and breaking ball. He’s throwing on TV right now btw. Health is a component but not the only one. Retaining last fall’s stuff under a heavier workload is another.

2:36
Insert Clever Name Here: What are your thoughts on Josh Fuentes? Legitimate prospect, or a likely AAAA guy who’s just had a good performance so far?

2:36
Eric A Longenhagen: Prospect, probably as a bench bat tho.

2:36
Fluffya accent: What constitutes a player being a dude?

2:37
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m not a fan of the ‘guy’ ‘Guy’ ‘dude’ nomenclature nd don’t use it i nmy writing but you can use context clues to understand what an individual means in a low-stakes environment like a chat

2:37
Meltor: How would you rank the top three 2018 draftees at this point?

2:37
Eric A Longenhagen: (bangs head against desk)

2:38
Ken Giles Right Hook: I would love for college baseball to be more accessible. Think we ever see a day where college baseball makes gains in popularity?

2:41
Eric A Longenhagen: I honestly don’t know. On some level I think yes. It’s probably an area that will be helped by gambling legalization and by online streaming. But also the level of play is not good and, other than SEC schools, the college games I go to are not typically well-attended and I’m too out of touch with college-aged kids at this point to know how to get them to show up.

2:41
Earl: What are your thoughts on Jesse Winker? Are you a fan? Could you elaborate ?

2:41
Eric A Longenhagen: Think he’s an average everyday LF

2:41
Jose: I dont know if this is negotiable in the same way that moving the pitching mound could be, but if the decline of stolen bases over recent years can be partly attributed to increased catcher throwing strength, would addressing the stolen bases via shortening the base-base distance (by a foot ) as a means to increase fan interest in-game be worthwhile?

2:43
Eric A Longenhagen: I think changes like this will have too many unintended consequences to seriously consider any of them. Steals have gone away because it takes someone really good at it (75% success is the break even point) to make it worthwhile and there are just fewer of those guys around now, especially since batted ball data and shifting has enabled slower players to play MIF spots. See what I’m talking about wrt unintended consequences? We start having good batted ball data, yada yada yada, there are less steals.

2:44
Bobby McGee: Who do you think ends up with the Yankees 1b job?

2:44
Eric A Longenhagen: Voit/Bird platoon

2:44
Hobbs: Hi Eric, Past prospect question here. Is there anything to really be excited about with Tyler White, or is he merely a placeholder for Tucker.

2:45
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m not on White, though he does have huge power. 1B-only for me

2:45
Duchess: Given the rankings, it feels like Will Smith is already sort of blocked by Ruiz in LA. Is this true, or is he trade bait or just a guy that ends up playing a ton of positions for the Dodgers?

2:45
Eric A Longenhagen: Nah, he can play all over the place

2:46
Johnny: Hi Eric. Do you think Marco Luciano could jump into your top100 by the end of next year or is silly to just think about it? Thank you.

2:47
Nils: As you continue working up the team lists, are you confident there will not be any additional 50 FV guys that did not make the top ~130 list? Any guys you think might be borderline going into the last few systems?

2:48
Eric A Longenhagen: Nope, we worked on the guys on the periphery (the 45+s and 45s) for each of the remaining orgs when we did the 130 to ensure we wouldn’t run into that issue and also because it helps with the picks to click article

2:48
Tommy Sells: Tucupita Marcano. His BB%/K% ratios are eyepopping. Do you see him keeping it up as he moves to higher levels?

2:48
Eric A Longenhagen: speaking of 45+s

2:49
Eric A Longenhagen: Tucupita’s a prime example. How far apart from Rocchio should he be? Not that far, is he a 50 right now? These are things we talked about in the 15ish hours Kiley and I spent on the phone in the week leading up to prospect week to make sure we don’t suck.

2:49
Brian: Why are you higher on Rocchio than Freeman? Both have elite contact skills without drawing a ton of BBs but Freeman has performed at a higher level.

2:50
Eric A Longenhagen: Freeman not a SS for me and think Rocchio has a better shot at having power.

2:50
section 34: A catcher is currently the top-rated draft prospect. Don’t catchers do poorly when drafted that high?

2:50
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes but Adley is christlike

2:51
Duchess: Shed Long feels a little like Rougie Odor, no?

2:51
Eric A Longenhagen: yeah I see what you’re getting at there, that’s not nutty

2:51
Brian: Have you seen or heard of anything from Aaron Bracho lately? I know he didnt play last year but its odd I havent heard a peep. Is he still the same level prospect he was when he signed his bonus?

2:52
Eric A Longenhagen: He’s fine. Fractured arm ended 2018 but he started playing again over the winter.

2:53
Eric A Longenhagen: in short, the degree of confidence in his profile is less because I didn’t see him play during the summer but the tools are still good

2:53
Brian: Any thoughts on Ernie Clement?

2:53
Eric A Longenhagen: Speedy, high-contact utility type

2:55
Jake: Thanks for answering my question before.

Have you heard anything about Jose Suarez and his velo this spring? Just wondering if it’s still up or trending back down.

2:55
Eric A Longenhagen: He was 91-93 yesterday

2:56
Derrick: Does Isaac Paredes have much of a shot to play second base?

2:56
Eric A Longenhagen: Meh, maybe. I’d just leave him at 3B

2:56
I Believe in Stephen Vogt: Get that A’s prospect list done!

2:56
Eric A Longenhagen: Okay! let me rapid fire some for 5 min first

2:57
Justin: Who’s the next big HS name you’re going to see this spring?

2:57
Eric A Longenhagen: Spencer Jones

2:57
Warbiscuit: Any chance you or Kiley would go to Auburn to see Will Holland or some of the 2020 eligibles like Tanner Burns this spring?

2:57
Eric A Longenhagen: they come to Kiley, I think

2:58
Al Avila: Odds Andrew Vaughn slips to me at #5?

2:58
Eric A Longenhagen: 20%?

2:58
Johnny5Alive: I am looking at the pirates roster, and I can’t really see how the likes of tucker and hayes don’t come up this year. Thoughts?

2:59
Eric A Longenhagen: Agree and I think Hayes is a star

2:59
TD: All being very similar in your grades (and all dual threats), who do you see with the most offensive potential of Connor Scott, Cole Roederer, and Jordyn Adams?

2:59
Eric A Longenhagen: Adams but Roederer is the safest bet of the three

2:59
Jay: Would a player with a plus hit tool be considered more or less likely to tap into their raw power than a player with a lesser hit tool? Better quality contact, but maybe not making an adjustment in approach or swing due to that better quality if what they use is working? Does this routinely get factored in when projecting future power grades?

3:02
Eric A Longenhagen: Your thinking is good. There are guys with plus or better hits tools whose approach detracts from game power (Keibert is a prospect like this, Andrelton Simmons is a big leaguer like this) and those for whom it has a multiplicative-style effect and enables them to have more game power (how many) than raw power (how far) like Altuve. And then you have the sell out for power at the cost of contact guys

3:02
Eric A Longenhagen: so yes we’re thinking about that stuff

3:02
Earl: Is Seth Beer someone to be excited about?

3:02
Eric A Longenhagen: Depends on who you ask, if you ask Kiley and I we’d say nah but Houston is smart and they obviously like him

3:02
Stephen: Taylor Hearn: SP or lockdown RP?

3:02
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m in on him as a SP

3:02
Tank: Jean Carlos Mejia looks like he has great potential (Twitter highlight I saw). You think he can make it on to a future rotation?

3:02
Eric A Longenhagen: yes

3:03
Dan: How long does it take for a prospect’s performance to make you reconsider his ceiling? Just thinking of a guy like Brock Deatherage, who killed it in a small sample last year.

3:03
Eric A Longenhagen: when it happens at an age appropriate level for guys like that, which may be AA

3:03
Mookie Benintendi: If Ethan Hankins just simply shows he’s healthy with good velocity this year is he an auto include on top 100 prospects lists?

3:04
Eric A Longenhagen: more concerned about breaking ball quality tbh. Velo was fine during the summer but I’d have Vargas, Lenny over him just in that system right nw

3:04
Jim Leyland Palmer: BRYCE TO PHILLY

3:04
Braník Best: Harper to the phillies

3:04
Eric A Longenhagen: is it happening?

3:04
Eric A Longenhagen: oh hey, it’s happening

3:04
Eric A Longenhagen: well my hometown brethren are rejoicing no doubt

3:05
Cove Dweller: Heyman says Bryce to PHI

3:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Wow so surprised a Boras client signing was broken by Heyman

3:05
Eric A Longenhagen: …

3:05
Hakuna Machado: Cal Quantrill seems to have fallen a little as a prospect. Your thoughts?

3:06
Eric A Longenhagen: Yeah he wasn’t on our 100 two 100s ago and we got yelled at

3:06
Eric A Longenhagen: lol my chat question queue is just a wall of you all telling me Harper signed, which I sincerely appreciate

3:07
Earl: 13 years for Harper. Wow

3:07
Eric A Longenhagen: holy shiiiit

3:07
Eric A Longenhagen: Harper’s deal is about as long as he was years old when it was clear he was going to be good

3:08
TrippsfullofBS: Need your honest opinion here, Eric…..My league mates think I’m so smart since I have a law degree. I often circumvent the rules of our league, NGNL, to my benifit. Does that make me a cheat?

3:09
Eric A Longenhagen: no but don’t do that stuff in real life. It’s fine to be hypershrewd with that stuff. Some guy who was new to a football league I was in once said aloud ‘I hope Antonio Gates gets to me’ and my buddy LaBar and I traded up to the pick in front of him to take him. I’m coming for the trophy, yo.

3:09
Eric A Longenhagen: But give them a chance to re-write the rules so there aren’t loopholes, that’s called cooperation and it’s good

3:09
Earl: Do you believe in Widener ?

3:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Taylor? yeah

3:10
Daniel L: Which contract do you like better for the team? Machado or Harper?

3:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Machado

3:11
@Holes_in_my_Sox: Do you, even just a little bit, cheer for players to get paid more than what their “Market Value” is? Or do you like the idea that analytics has provided the market a step closer to a “True value”? if such a thing could even exist…

3:12
Eric A Longenhagen: of course i want guys to get paid, most of all because I want top athletic talent to want to play baseball. Money isn’t the only or most influential variable for certain individuals (it wouldn’t be mine) but it doesn’t hurt

3:12
DJ Tanner: With the Yanks depth at OF, why not trade Clint Frazier to the Indians for someone like Tyler Freeman. Yanks get a young guy with lots of potential, Indians get immediate help. Makes sense right

3:13
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes, that type of deal (maybe not that specific deal) makes sense from a 40-man, talent equilibrium standpoint

3:13
Eric A Longenhagen: okay I must go

3:13
Eric A Longenhagen: thanks for coming, this was a 60 chat

3:13
Eric A Longenhagen: see you next week

We hoped you liked reading Eric Longenhagen Chat – 2/28/19 by Eric Longenhagen!

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Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.

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