Eric Longenhagen Chat: 4/12/2019

12:01
Eric A Longenhagen: Good morning from Tempe. Please give me a minute to do something to the Royals list (which runs Monday) before I forget.

12:04
Eric A Longenhagen: Thanks, let’s begin

12:04
Chris: What do you see out of Spencer Howard, Daniel Lynch and DL Hall? Can any of them develop into being a #3 or better?

12:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Howard and Hall have a chance for 3 pluses with fringe command, Lynch could be a bunch of 55s with 55 command. That’s right on the #3/4 fringe depending on the inning load

12:05
Lilith: Why do you prefer Abrams over Witt?

12:05
Eric A Longenhagen: Better feel to hit

12:05
Robert: Thoughts on Faedo this year? Box scores look good, but what about weight and velo?

12:05
Eric A Longenhagen: We’re tepid. Slider/slider command are great, but the velo, extension, knee issues concern us

12:05
Fangraphs Reader: Is there anyway the board stats page could have an option for all affiliated minor leagues, so the Mexican league stats don’t pop up?

12:06
Eric A Longenhagen: I’ll talk to Sean

12:06
Kvn: How does Adley compare to recent 1/1 candidates?

12:06
Eric A Longenhagen: We like him a little more than most recent 1-1s

12:07
Stros Baby: Should I jump on the Dylan Carlson band wagon? Hot start!

12:07
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes, he was on our Picks to Click. https://blogs.fangraphs.com/picks-to-click-who-we-expect-to-make-the-2…

12:07
El Dorado: Bryan Reynolds has three homers already in AAA. With some late-developing power, do you think there could be room for him in the Pirates outfield soon?

12:08
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes, I think Indianapolis has the core of the next competitive Pirates club

12:08
Jack Ofalltrades: Have you gotten a chance to see Mason Thompson of the Padres this year? I know he looked promising a few years back, but dealt with injuries. Keith Law recently mention that his stuff has come back with a vengeance.

12:08
Eric A Longenhagen: Yes, saw his final spring outing. 93-95 with average secondaries, change and curve flashing above.

12:08
Eric A Longenhagen: was up to 97 during the spring, looks good

12:09
Mother Hen: How did Chris Rodriguez of the Angels look in his return from injury? Any word?

12:09
Eric A Longenhagen: Was 92-96 when I saw him during the spring. Seemed fine, maybe secondaries weren’t quite as nasty, but he hasn’t been back all that long.

12:10
Oliver: You mentioned Jean Carlos Mejia‘s effective velocity in your write-up, but have you any reports about actual changes in velocity or stuff? They put him on the 40-man, so do you think he could be a rapid riser?

12:10
Eric A Longenhagen: Velo hasn’t ticked up so far as I know, he just wasn’t properly evaluated previously.

12:11
Eric A Longenhagen: and yeah, I could see him pitching in the bigs this year if CLE needs the arms

12:12
Jeff: Nate Pearson seems like the type who could blow up. If he strings together a good early start to the season, what’s his timeline look like?

12:12
Eric A Longenhagen: Toronto is bad and has no motivation to move him quickly, to say nothing of manicuring his inning load coming off a season lost to injury.

12:12
Tim: Derek Holland rosterable?

12:12
Eric A Longenhagen: For fantasy or on a real team? I have no feel for the first one, yes to real life rosterable.

12:13
James: Can we talk about how awful the new MiLB app is?

12:13
Eric A Longenhagen: It’s bad, coach.

12:13
Eric A Longenhagen: I just wanna see box scores, that seems like a reasonable thing.

12:13
Harry: Gerardo Carrillo: Another Dodgers swingman/bullpen arm or possible SP?

12:14
Eric A Longenhagen: He’s on that fringe, I’m not totally confident he starts. Stuff is good, though.

12:14
AS: Only 2 of Bishop’s 16 HR’s have come on the road. Red flag?

12:14
Eric A Longenhagen: ASU plays a lot of home games early, skewing that ratio.

12:14
Eric A Longenhagen: like it’s not a 50/50 split so the dinger shouldn’t be, either

12:14
Derek: HI Eric, with the recent news from BA taking down all the videos from upon request from MLB/MILB, do you see the same happening with Fangraphs? What are you thoughts on this?

12:17
Eric A Longenhagen: We have not received a request from MiLB to take videos down. Most of my videos are exempt from the restrictions outlined by MiLB, according to BA’s post on the matter (which I’ll link to in a second) because they’re taken on the backfields here in AZ. I don’t know how BA’s paywall impacts MiLB’s decision to crack down on them first. I can’t comment on what FG would do if we were asked to take things down. I’d probably be kind of a dick to MiLB like I am to most people who try to tell me what to do.

12:17
Mark: Last year you said Luis Almanzar was having trouble keeping weight on and impacting the ball. This year he looks a bit thicker, and is off to a good start. Was there a medical issue that might have affected his performance that has been remedied? Has his scouting outlook changed at all from last year?

12:18
Eric A Longenhagen: Saw him this spring and am off him

12:18
Pete: Is there anything Jasson Dominguez could do this year to become better than a 50FV on next year’s pre-season list?

12:18
Eric A Longenhagen: probably not

12:18
R: Do you know if a team has figured out how to add spin rate? looking at statcast, the brewers have a number of guys whose spin rates have increased at least 100 RPMs from last season to this season

12:20
Eric A Longenhagen: Driveline studies have shown spin rate is not malleable unless the pitcher is clueless from a grip standpoint upon initial measure. SPin rates can move a little bit, but mostly people in baseball think topical substances can help. Mix of suncreen, pine tar, etc.

12:20
CraigM: Hi Eric – thanks for all of great work, initial thoughts on two Dodger prospects Michael Grove and Josiah Gray, thanks!

12:21
Eric A Longenhagen: Grove was up to 96 this spring, flashed plus slider. Was 90-95 in his first start this week. Command kind of all over the place but that’s to be expected, he hasn’t thrown in forever. Gray I love. Comversion arm just scratching the surface, heat, command, one of the best dev groups in baseball. Could explode.

12:22
Mark: Was at the Lake Elsinore game last night and the Storm looked like a bunch a future big leaguers (bigger and more athletic) than the 66ers. Will that be the case all year – are they just more talented than the league they are in?

12:22
Eric A Longenhagen: yes

12:22
Terry: Does Pedro Avila crack the SD rotation down the road, or get crowded out to to SD’s depth/his own skill set?

12:22
Eric A Longenhagen: he’s in that #4/5 mix for me, might be fun to piggyback him with Lauer, though

12:23
Spider Puig: Are you guys going to be publishing a mock draft soon?

12:23
Eric A Longenhagen: we haven’t talked about it, maybe end of the month?

12:24
RyanW: Is it worthwhile to leave Oneil Cruz at SS? In a vacuum I understand his highest possible upside is there, but doesnt the presence of Tucker/Hayes mean that he’s even more likely to end up in RF? so why not put him there now, and try to rush the bat to the majors?

12:25
Eric A Longenhagen: I guess there’s an argument for that even if you’re counting your chickens a little early as far as Tucker and Hayes are concerned. You keep his value highest at SS, that’s a strong argument, too.

12:25
Mitchell: In the interesting of not disparaging teenagers, I completely understand why the only public comments about make-up are positive ones. That said, is there some sort of way for us outsiders to discern negative personality traits in prospects that concern scouts/front offices?

12:25
Eric A Longenhagen: You could peruse social media if you really wanted to

12:25
Eric A Longenhagen: but it’s not like that is an accurate representation of any of us, so…

12:26
Mark: How accurate are the ht/wt stats on the BOARD? For reference Jack Leiter does not look like he’s 195, but I’ve also only seen low quality video from bad angles.

12:26
Eric A Longenhagen: they’re as accurate as the weights listed on official rosters, which is variable depending on the org

12:26
Lou: Gabriel Arias off to a good start…still overall excited about him?

12:27
Eric A Longenhagen: Not crazy excited but I still think he’s a good prospect

12:27
Jay: What’d you think of Avila’s debut?

12:27
Eric A Longenhagen: He was okay

12:27
Top 5?: Vaughn still going 2nd?

12:28
Eric A Longenhagen: I’d still take him there, yeah

12:28
Ginny: What areas separate Acuna from Robles, and how big are those gaps?

12:28
Eric A Longenhagen: the raw power gap is sizeable but I like Robles’ glove better in CF long term.

12:28
Danny: Based on where you have the top 5 draft eligible guys in the top 100 and Kiley’s comments that Jasson Dominguez would safely be in the top 100, would he be a top 5 pick in this draft?

12:29
Eric A Longenhagen: We have a 50 FV on Dominguez so he’d be in that draft tier for us

12:31
Danny: Hear anything about Juan Carela with the Yankees?

12:31
Eric A Longenhagen: Well-built teenage righty into the mid-90s. Good arm action, stride length and direction needed help when he was an amateur.

12:32
mamsk: Is Tyler Phillips legit? Seemingly easy plus command with good FB velo and a nice CH, he’s carving up high A again

12:32
Eric A Longenhagen: We’re fans, certainly.

12:32
Jacoby: Who do you believe is the most sleeper prospect in the Padres organization?

12:33
Eric A Longenhagen: The most sleeper, hmmm, Zunica?

12:33
Oliver: Ronaldo Hernandez and Rodolfo Duran raked in low-A but have scuffled badly this year. Do you cut catchers extra slack when adjusting to new levels/pitching staffs?

12:33
Eric A Longenhagen: too early, dude

12:33
Larry Legend: There seems to be very little talk about Corbin Carroll. How has he looked this spring?

12:34
Eric A Longenhagen: He looks good, saw him last week. A little stronger now, arm is plus, he’s a 6 or 7 runner with feel for CF, pull power isn’t there but he whacks it to all fields. Dbacks were in heavy to see him, they pick 16. Think he’s in the early/mid first round mix

12:34
A Baseball Watcher: There’s nothing you hear more about on baseball broadcasts than how shadows make it difficult on the hitter. Do you know of any data to back that up?

12:35
Eric A Longenhagen: No I’m not sure how to input shadow amount as a data point. Y

12:35
Lawrence: Any buzz on sleeper DSL guys for 2019 yet?

12:36
Eric A Longenhagen: extended is less than a week old, DSL doesn’t start for a few months

12:36
Jake: If you were a GM, what would you prioritize in the draft for rounds 20-40? Personally, I feel trying to mine for relief arms is most beneficial?

12:36
Eric A Longenhagen: weirdos, raw material to hand to dev

12:36
Oliver: You touted Trent Thornton as a potentially dominant reliever pre-season. Have you seen enough to think he can sustain success as a starter?

12:36
Eric A Longenhagen: no

12:36
Reid: Hi Eric, thanks for the chat. How would you go about grading Astudillo’s hit tool? The feel for contact is obviously incredible, but how do you evaluate “plate discipline” for someone who swings at everything?

12:37
Eric A Longenhagen: he’ll be on next week’s Twins list and we’re dropping an 8 on the bat

12:37
Tommy John : Know anything about Cole Uvila, rangers org? What would it take for a guy like him – very late draft pick, upper 90s heater, old for level but maybe a “late bloomer” due to various setbacks/late start but with good results to this point – to even enter the radar or start to be taken seriously?

12:37
Eric A Longenhagen: Yeah my notes from last fall are: up to 97, 5 breaker

12:37
KilleBrews: Thoughts on Jarren Duran? Seems to be getting some buzz.

12:37
Eric A Longenhagen: he’s prominently on the Dox list

12:37
Eric A Longenhagen: sox*

12:38
Anthony: Thought Appleman had said something about hosting D-I stats on FG? Do you know if that’s still happening?

12:38
Eric A Longenhagen: At some point but we’re currently in the ‘make sure this data is clean and publishable’ phase

12:39
Jeff: How would you say Vaughn’s bat compares to Bryant when KB was coming out of school?

12:39
Eric A Longenhagen: better feel for contact, raw power is less explosive

12:39
DJ Tanner: Piggybacking on James comment, how do we have MiLB fix their new app? I don’t want to go to the web site to look at box scores. Do we need to mass email them complaints?

12:40
Eric A Longenhagen: I guess you can?

12:40
Sammy Sooser: Have you gotten any recent looks at Zach Willeman? Any thoughts on him?

12:40
Eric A Longenhagen: not recently but you’re right to ask about him. Hoping to run into him during extended.

12:41
Eric A Longenhagen: speaking of extended, I’m gonna go (to a game) soon, so trying to tear through as many of these as possible

12:41
NICE, GARY!!: Are you still bullish on Carter Stewart? Or does his up-and-down spring diminish his stock?

12:41
Eric A Longenhagen: less so

12:41
Mike: Riley Greene took a big tumble in The Board recently. Is he out as far as a top 5-7 pick? Also, is it fair to say this class has been disappointing in terms of performance to this point this season? Seems like more guys are dropping that jumping up.

12:42
Eric A Longenhagen: I like this class and think Greene is one of the better high school bats in it, don’t think he tumbled as much as we’re just more clearly lining guys up.

12:42
Barnard: Have you ever scouted a knuckleballer? Is there a theoretical limit to how high you could grade a knuckleball or the player’s FV?

12:42
Eric A Longenhagen: yes and I had no idea what to do with i

12:42
NICE, GARY!!: Is Daniel Espino a top-10 pick?

12:42
Eric A Longenhagen: probably not

12:43
Bob: You were pretty high on Tirso Ornelas and he’s off to a nice start. Heard any reports on him this year yet?

12:43
Eric A Longenhagen: Saw him this spring and looked as he has in the past. Body is great, so is feel for contact, strength-driven power, more game pop maybe coming with refined approach.

12:43
Oliver: Esteban Quiroz and Dairon Blanco are older hitting prospects with short but productive track records in MILB. Does first-hand evaluation suggest a potential future regular?

12:43
Eric A Longenhagen: Not on Blanco, Quiroz mught have some 2 WAR seasons but he’s also 27

12:43
John: Does Nick Margevicius stick in the rotation for SD? What is his ceiling?

12:43
Eric A Longenhagen: #5, maybe #4/5, a 1.5 WARish guy

12:44
Christian Meuli: Watching Adalberto Mondesi bat, it almost looks like 90% of the time he makes up his mind pre-pitch that he’s going to swing no matter what, or (rarely) I’m going to take this pitch no matter what. Is this common among major leaguers? If not, can it be coached out of him?

12:44
Eric A Longenhagen: It’s not common and I don’t think Mondesi will have drastic skill improvement as a big leaguer. He’s an elite physical talent and lives off of that, alone.

12:44
Sir Nerdlington: Obviously Peter Alonso isn’t the guy we’re seeing, but you’ve hung a 50 on him. Would you revise it any after seeing what he’s done?

12:44
Eric A Longenhagen: No

12:45
Danny: Any idea who the Yankees have scouted for the draft or might be interested in?

12:45
Eric A Longenhagen: I’ve seen Oppenheimer at Jung, Vandy, TCU…somewhere else that’s escaping me

12:46
Indymets: What is the point of Raw Power, since we also have Game Power. All I can imagine is batting practice blasts

12:46
Eric A Longenhagen: implies something can be tweaked or fixed or that something is causing the power not to play in games.

12:47
Eric A Longenhagen: I’m not saying raw and game are the exact right means of eval, but having two makes sense to me

12:47
Emily: What’s our take on Vogelbach? Crazy good AAA numbers the past few years but finally getting a chance – do you think he will be an above-average bat at DH?

12:48
Eric A Longenhagen: believe in the contact but he’s a perfect example of someone who has big raw pwoer that he hasn’t gotten to in games because he’s willing to swing at stuff he can hit but not drive. It’s this type of hitter a juiced ball benefits because you’re more forgiven for making sub-optimal contact.

12:48
Saltwater: Do you have a date set for putting up the SF prospects list? Where will Luciano be?

12:48
Eric A Longenhagen: not exactly but soon. He’ll be #2

12:48
Donald: Seems like more good prospects are being held back in extended spring training than in the past, true or am i just crazy

12:48
Eric A Longenhagen: we might just be getting better at properly evaluating lower level prospects

12:49
Joe: What do you make of Zac Gallen? He seems to have had a pretty impressive start to the season.

12:49
Eric A Longenhagen: command, changeup, kitchen sink repertoire depth. I like him as a #4/5

12:49
Guest: Any reports on Braxton Garrett‘s stuff in his first start? Is it back to where it was pre-TJ or possibly even better than before?

12:49
Eric A Longenhagen: 9-93, threw a ton of breakers

12:49
another bad dynasty manager: Eric: I’m an Orioles fan pleased by the direction of the new management. Your board has another catcher going first this year. The last time the O’s drafted a catcher with their first pick (Wieters) he never lived up to expectations. Should they draft someone like Witt or Abrams instead?

12:50
Eric A Longenhagen: Wieters has nothing to do with Adley

12:50
Christopher Nolan Jones: favorite cereal?

12:51
Eric A Longenhagen: it changes. I’m most nostalgic about Count Chocula and Berry Berry Kix, but if you told me to eat a bowl of something right now it’d be the off-brand Peanut Butter Cheerios we have at the Fry’s

12:51
Anya: Do the Braves and Indians match up on a Kolby Allard for Bo Naylor swap?

12:52
Eric A Longenhagen: Arguably, but I’d be scared of Allard’s velo flucutations

12:52
Matt: Is there any organization or specific farm team that’s (in)famous for making major fixes in their players? Like, say, increasing launch angle or adding spin to pitches?

12:52
Eric A Longenhagen: LAD, NYY, HOU

12:52
Matthew: Liking what you’re seeing from Amed Rosario so far?

12:52
Eric A Longenhagen: yes (thank god)

12:53
Bob: When might we see Kevin Alcamtara in game action?

12:53
Eric A Longenhagen: go to extended?

12:53
Ben: I’m so intrigued by the blurb on Hunter Barco on the board. I love when high school prospects have a good changeup, but how “comes and goes” is this arm strength. Are we talking mid to high 80s or is it comfortably 90s?

12:53
Eric A Longenhagen: has been a little of both over the last year

12:53
Bryce: Could Hjelle be a top 100 guy if he’s sitting 94-96 like early reports and all the other stuff remains?

12:53
Eric A Longenhagen: No, not enough playable secondary stuff. Heater is real, though.

12:53
Jeff: Do folks like yourself get a little tired of fantasy driving the biggest amount of interest in milb prospecting or does that add to the enjoyment? Have always wondered about that.

12:55
Eric A Longenhagen: I get tired of it, mostly because of fantasy folks who assume everyone interacts with it the same way they do. They don’t all do that, of course.

12:56
Sammy Sooser: Kevin Abel, out with TJ. Pat Casey drama aside, the timeline indicates he’d be in a similar position as Grove was in 2018, as far as the draft is concerned. Was the Grove pick a fluke occurrence, or should Abel be on the draft radar for 2020?

12:57
Eric A Longenhagen: He’ll be on the radar. I think some teams don’t round down due to injury because they think healthy pitchers are also so likely to get injured that it doesn’t matter. If you like Abel’s stuff in round two, just take him there if he’d be good value without the injury. 6 change, above breaking ball, 40 fastball but plus command.

12:57
Eli: Andrew Vaughn or Pete Alonso

12:57
Eric A Longenhagen: Vaughn

12:57
Ed: Is Marco Luciano being 2nd on the Giants prospect list a reflection of how talented he is or more down to the Giants having a not so great farm?

12:57
Eric A Longenhagen: a little of both

12:58
Oliver: Thanks for answering so many questions, and thanks for the outstanding content you and Kiley deliver. I especially enjoy the daily prospect notes.

12:58
Eric A Longenhagen: you got it

12:58
Adam: Is Gabe Mosser a legitimate prospect or a college arm dominating competition too young for him?

12:58
Eric A Longenhagen: he’s on my list of guys to ask about based on first week lines, but i haven’t gotten to it yet

12:58
mets fan: What do you think about Junior Santos, Mets Pitching Prospect? Next great prospect maybe?

12:59
Eric A Longenhagen: could explode, yeah. Size, strikes for size, arm strength. everything else just okay. Boras guy already, I think.

12:59
D back fan: What are the grades on Josh Green’s pitches?

12:59
Eric A Longenhagen: a bunch of 50/55s

12:59
Kevin Kelsey: Concerned about Dustin May’s second start?

12:59
Eric A Longenhagen: no, had 24 swinging strikes his first start

12:59
Matt: Who is the one single *weirdest* prospect out there? What makes him so weird?

12:59
Eric A Longenhagen: Myles Straw

12:59
David: Are some guys in the Mariners system like Logan Gilbert or Julio Rodriguez likely to end up on top 100 lists?

1:00
Eric A Longenhagen: yeah

1:00
Andrew: How has your estimation of Pete Alonso changed in the last two weeks? Even those who were most bullish on him didn’t expect this.

1:01
Eric A Longenhagen: part of the reason we only 50’d him was because we think he might hit decline phase early due to his age/body, so keep in mind FV is not about peak (you could argue it should be more about it than we believe) but about 6 years of production

1:01
Eric A Longenhagen: okay all, i’ve gotta run. I hope your friday ends swiftly and your weekend kicks ass. see you next week

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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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