Kiley McDaniel Chat – 10/1/18

11:23

Kiley McDaniel: Apologies for the delay, ran late on a scout call

11:24

Kiley McDaniel: We’re chatting at this odd time since I’m traveling this week and we have day baseball today in 90 minutes

11:25

Kiley McDaniel: I’ve been around instructs this week — ATL, DET, TOR, NYY, TB, BOS — and put out the most recent podcast last week: https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/fangraphs-audio-presents-the-untitled-…

11:25

Kiley McDaniel: we also have a new prospect land page where you can find all of our content: https://www.fangraphs.com/prospects/

11:26

waks: does nick senzel’s bout of vertigo do anything to his projections? i forget how nick esasky dealt with it, but can it be a recurring thing?

11:26

Kiley McDaniel: don’t have a ton of experience with this in baseball, so we’re just assuming he returns back to where he was until there’s evidence to the contrary

11:26

John: Thoughts on loisiaga next year? Does he get a starting role?

11:26

Kiley McDaniel: I would guess he’s a 6th/7th starter that starts in the pen and can jump in the rotation, since his stuff works in short stints and AAA would kinda be wasting him

11:27

Kiley McDaniel: Similar to the conundrum the Braves have with all the pitching being ready. Allard won’t play up in the pen, so he’s rotation or AAA, whereas others like Touki could play up in the pen, so they’re more likely to break camp, etc.

11:28

Draft20/80: Who helped themselves the most on the cape this year? Vaughan?

11:28

Kiley McDaniel: That’s Cal 1B Andrew Vaughn. He was already gonna be top 20 if he skipped the summer, so he didn’t gain that much ground. Here’s our draft rankings for reference

11:28

Kiley McDaniel: UNC RF/1B Michael Busch made some ground, working into that top tier of corner bats when it wasn’t clear he was tehre

11:29

Kiley McDaniel: Vandy RF JJ Bleday, Stanford RF/1B Kyle Stowers and Creighton RF Will Robertson all showed better than was expected and made some money on the Cape

11:30

Heathcliff Slocumb: Anything positive to take from Tristin Lux’s year?  The power numbers don’t quite seem to be where one would expect.

11:31

Kiley McDaniel: Tristen Lutz (for player tagging purposes, not being spelling police) posted a 110 wRC+ in Low-A at age 19 for a power-over-hit guy that had a terrible first month. That’s really good. In-game power usually comes last and he’s already showing it against much older pitching

11:32

Kiley McDaniel: I’d be buying on Lutz

11:32

Jay: Is the delightfully-named Brock Deatherage a legit prospect?

11:33

Kiley McDaniel: Not legit for me. Has some tools, but is already 23, swing is a little stiff. BABIP-fueled debut. He was a 10th round senior sign for a reason.

11:33

Kiley McDaniel: Still could be a big leaguer and that would make him a nice find at that pick, but wouldn’t expect anything more than generic reserve

11:34

Xam: Max Fried has looked awfully good out of the pen. Is he offseason trade bait or a key bullpen piece for the Braves next year?

11:34

Kiley McDaniel: Another good example of what teams with lots of arms need to do–figure out which ones can be short-term pen guys and save you from having to go sign a $5M matchup lefty

11:34

Kiley McDaniel: he’s already going to be on the 40-man and you only have 5 Triple-A rotation spots

11:34

Clay : Which International prospects have you drooled over this year?

11:35
11:37

Kiley McDaniel: Wouldn’t say I drooled over anyone in this class, whereas Wander Franco and Daniel Flores in last year’s class were all-time J2 guys in terms of loud tools. Dodgers C Diego Cartaya is an advanced defender with a big arm and some contact skills. Mariners IF Noelvi Marte has advance hit/power tools but isn’t big and may be a 2B. Giants SS Marco Luciano has some of the flashy big tools and game performance, which is why he was our top 16 year old.

11:38

DJ Tanner: Any good Javier Baez comp’s in the minors? Guys who can play all over the diamond, don’t have great peripherals (High K’s, low BB), yet get by because they simply are incredibly talented.

11:39

Kiley McDaniel: Minus the infield thing, Cristian Pache. Maybe Isaac Paredes? None have the 80 bat speed of Baez, so I don’t like putting their names next to him, but those guys kinda fit what you said minus the player name.

11:39

Cole Blaque: Does Kevin Smith have a little Trevor Story in him?  Middle infielder with some swing-and-miss issues, good power, and good speed.

11:40

Kiley McDaniel: Eh maybe if you really squint, but Smith isn’t that dynamic/explosive

11:41

J: Has Elijah Cabell signed with a Juco yet?

11:41

Kiley McDaniel: He’s going to FSU. LSU had Zack Hess, Duplantis and Watson return so they didn’t have room for him and the whole incoming class–which was tops in the country.

11:42

Angelus Novus: How would a scout grade Blake Snells four pitch arsenal?

11:42

Kiley McDaniel: I talked a couple weeks ago to a scout that saw Snell. Here’s the tweet of what he told me

 

Kiley McDaniel
@kileymcd

 

Talked to a scout that saw Blake Snell shove recently–didn’t throw a FB below 96 for 3 innings, CB was a 70, CH wa… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
19 Sep 2018
11:44

Kiley McDaniel: Something like 70FB-70CB-60CH with 60 command? Maybe better than that. I don’t think we would project those grades on any pitcher in the minors. Like if you took the top 10% of Forrest Whitley or MacKenzie Gore’s projections it might be that, maybe top 5%.

11:44

Jim: Do you anticipate Will Smith or Keibert Ruiz having a better MLB bat?

11:45

Kiley McDaniel: We’ve had Smith over Ruiz for the last year and it sounds like the Dodgers have it that way, as well. Both above defender with above bats and above raw power, but Smith is a better athlete with more loft in his swing

11:45

Kiley McDaniel: (they’re still ranked very closely, tho)

11:46

Tvators: Syndergaard to Padres, Last week’s chat Jeff (admittedly off the cuff) said maybe Paddack, Espinosa, Hedges.  That feels real light to me, I  wouldn’t expect Tatis, but Noah would have to bring back more than that? What you say?

11:46

Kiley McDaniel: I wouldn’t say that’s real light, but probably one more solid piece or swap in a top 100-150 prospect for Hedges

11:46

Kiley McDaniel: Okay there’s a ton of Braves questions in here, so I’ll go lightning round

11:47

ryan: Does touki throw a change or a splitter that acts like a change?

11:47

Kiley McDaniel: My understanding is CH with splitter action that the TrackMan algorithm also thinks/classifies as a splitter

11:47

Freddy: Hey Kiley. Saw you tweeting about international scouting department changes. Any idea what the Braves plan to do with their department? I know it probably isn’t pressing with the restrictions, but have they hired anyone as replacements?

11:47

Kiley McDaniel: From what I’ve heard, they haven’t made any/many hires but should reasonably soon

11:47

Greg: Saw the Weigel/Beck information you tweeted. Anything else you saw from Braves instructs?

11:48

Kiley McDaniel: Nothing earth shattering other than what I tweeted from @kileymcd. Probably gonna sneak out to see today’s game vs. HS Canadians after this is over

11:48

Hank: Any idea if the Braves changed things with Tristian Beck to make his stuff better when you saw it?

11:48

Kiley McDaniel: Looked more fluid, would assume that’s just a function of rest/subtle tweaks

11:48

NYTT: Does Ian Anderson have a decent chance of being a #1 (non-ace) or is he solidly a MOR who has a great chance of reaching that ceiling?

11:49

Kiley McDaniel: More 3 with a chance at 2, hard to say I see a 1 there, maybe 5%?

11:49

NYTT: What would your Braves starting rotation look like next year (with no signings in free agency)

11:52

Kiley McDaniel: Really tough since there’s likely some trades that would make this much easier. The candidates are vets Folty, Newcomb, Teheran, Gausman and youngsters Soroka, Touki, B. Wilson, Fried, Gohara, Wright, Allard, I. Anderson. I’d guess trades Teheran or Newcomb and slot in Soroka and Wilson/Touki/Gohara, the other two go to the pen with Fried, give Gohara some time in AAA to get some momentum, Wright/Anderson/Allard also in AAA. Could easily see packaging some young players to acquire a deGrom/Realmuto type

11:52

Frank Lyman from Amherst: Any thoughts on a Mets GM?

11:54

Kiley McDaniel: The rumor mill is working overtime with names, but no clear movement in terms of direction/interviews. Sounds like Minaya will maintain some level of influence and unlikely they go super progressive for a Stearns type. I tend to believe bad ownership consistently leads to bad decisions, but maybe this won’t be one?

11:54

Dees: When I think about all of the players who make significant leaps forward between high school and college (Strasburg comes to mind), I wonder how much international talent gets missed because it basically doesn’t get developed unless it dazzles by age 16…Isn’t that a potential source for lots of talent that is completely untapped?

11:55

Kiley McDaniel: This is the underlying assumption i my belief every team should have multiple DSL teams. Int’l scouts consistently agree that multiple MLB players are never signed out of the DR bc they emerge/would emerge as legit talents at age 19/20 but either stop playing or stop getting scouted at that age. Mets RHP Rafael Montero is a good example of one that shot thru the minors aftering emerging late.

11:56

Kiley McDaniel: Probably not any really good big leaguers, but guys in a third world country that could make 7 figures never get the chance

11:56

WSox: With the #3 pick the Chicago White Sox select CJ Abrams.

11:56

Kiley McDaniel: Sure, I could see that

11:56

Jimmy: With regard to run grades, I see some guys with like 60/55 grades. Is that a case of a guy who’s just got good running instincts but his pure speed isn’t as good? The only other rationale I could come up with is guys who may lose speed as they pack on muscle and age.

11:56

Kiley McDaniel: Getting bigger or less athletic as they age, yes

11:57

Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: I just saw this clip.

 

Kiley McDaniel
@kileymcd

 

Got two PA from our #6 overall prospect Rays SS Wander Franco yesterday. It’s electric bat speed w/intent, elite ba… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
28 Sep 2018

Oh, a dinky little foul swing, whatever, the next one will probably be…wait, that had home run distance?!

11:57

Kiley McDaniel: Yeah, Wander Franco has insane hand speed/strength in addition to bat control, body control, raw speed, etc. Extremely rare.

11:57

Jeb: Did you mean a Scout call?

11:57

Kiley McDaniel: Nah she’s learned that afternoons are for napping when I pull out the laptop

11:58

2nd pick: Abrams, Jones or Witt Jr. Right now, who ya got and why?

11:59

Kiley McDaniel: Abrams, then Greg Jones then Witt, but close enough that could flip by April. Discussed this a lot in podcast #3 and there’s timestamps so you can jump right to it: https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/fangraphs-audio-presents-the-untitled-…

11:59

tb.25: Perfect timing for a chat – roll form this into the tie breaker game1, into tie breaker game 2, into Monday night football.

11:59

Kiley McDaniel: You forgot 1 pm instructs!

11:59

GPT: Giants new front office, your top candidate would be?

12:00

Kiley McDaniel: Two names I’ve seen a few places–Matt Arnold from MIL, Mike Elias from HOU–fit what SF has said they’re looking for and I think is what that organization needs. Those would also be near the top of my general list of GM prospects regardless of the specific fit.

12:00

Joe: Anyway you make it to brewers instructs?

12:00

Kiley McDaniel: Eric lives right there, so Arizona instructs is his domain

12:03

Wes: In your podcast when you were discussing Cuban prospects, you said something like “He took 5 and gave 5.” in reference to his signing bonus. Can you clarify what you mean?

12:04

Kiley McDaniel: Eh, I’m guessing I meant the old system where if you went over your pool, then gave a Cuban player $5M, you’d pay a $5M overage penalty, like with Yoan Moncada, Luis Robert, etc.

12:04

Babyfarts Mckeezack: I know we can’t predict need at the MLB level but in a perfect world where do you think Wander Franco’s most valuable position is 4 years from now? Read he may outgrow SS but his quick hands could slow the progress.

12:04

Kiley McDaniel: I don’t think he would outgrow SS, he just isn’t super polished there and you can project improvement but you never know if it will happen. It would be a waste to not play him somewhere up the middle.

12:05

Xam: Where do you think Vidal Brujan ends up — CF or 2B?

12:05

Kiley McDaniel: 2B and above average D there

12:05

Logan: Thoughts on Josh Smith at LSU? Could he be a first rounder if he returns well from the back injury?

12:05

Kiley McDaniel: Possibly! Some scouts really liked him, definitely a guy to monitor early in the spring to see how he bounces back

12:05

Logan: Read somewhere during the season that scouts were NPing Alex Jackson. I know you saw him at instructs and said he looked better than you expected, can you expand on your current thoughts a little?

12:06

Kiley McDaniel: Sounds like he’s turned a corner a bit in terms of maturity. The body composition and receiving looked better to me. Always gonna be power over hit, but its big power and if he can catch, that’s a useful big leaguer

12:06

Blue Jay Matt: Toronto signed Orelvis Martinez for almost 700k more than the next highest guy, but you guys don’t have him ranked in your top 5. Did the Jays evaluate him as the top guy available or were they just late to the party on the others and forced to through their money at the best guy left in order to secure him?

12:08

Kiley McDaniel: One issue with the hard pool system is teams can’t get an edge by spending more money than another team, so they lock guys up earlier and earlier, better that they can pick the right guy and get a deal. So teams are watching 14 and 15 year olds play a few events and promising the best ones $2-3M and sometimes they don’t get better in the 12-24 months between verbal deal and signing the deal. But being 7th or 2nd when you’re 16 isn’t a very big gap in terms of long-term outlook. Tatis, Jr. got $750K, Juan Soto wasn’t in the top 15 bonuses in his class, etc.

12:08

Logan: Has a decision been finalized for Carter Stewart? Definitely going JUCO?

12:09

Kiley McDaniel: From what I was most recently told, it will be Eastern Florida JC and the only other recent option was post-grad IMG, which is what Brady Aiken did after his deal fell thru. So, one-year situations in Florida seems to be for sure and one source told me he’s already enrolled in that JC, but I haven’t confirmed.

12:09

Jonathan: How much do you think the FVs on the BOARD will change between now and the end of your off-season review?  Do you expect to uncover a few more complex league pop-up guys between now and then?

12:10

Kiley McDaniel: Yeah, we’ve already found more guys in instructs to add to the board that will just be added to the team lists. I would imagine the top 100 won’t change hugely, but there will definitely be some movement.

12:10

MZ: If MLB is cracking down, at least publicly, on deals with 14-year-old international players, is there a time when the majority of pre-July 2 deals are arranged with kids eligible for a given class?

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: They are absolutely not doing that. MLB has explicitly told teams they don’t care about early deals, they only care about package deals. Now, why early deals are still technically illegal in the rules isn’t clear, but MLB has told teams they won’t enforce that rule.

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: There are more than a couple deals in every class that are done 2+ years in advance

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: Most of the top 10-15 are done about 12 months in advance

12:11

Will Smith: He’s an actor, not a baseball player, bud

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: Good call, bro

12:12

Will Smith: Think he’ll ever play for the Phillies?

12:12

Kiley McDaniel: we can only hope

12:12

Minor LEaugers: Do you think MLB teams will buy apartment buildings, or dorms, so to speak, with a gym and a chef, so they can eat better and focus more on baseball? Since we know teams don’t like to pay them

12:13

Kiley McDaniel: I know Pittsburgh has this at Pirate City. I believe the Braves have this planned for North Port since there aren’t many hotels nearby. It’s 8 figures up front to save on a 6 figure tab each year, so it’s also a matter of cash/investment, usually decided on by the owner

12:14

Kiley McDaniel: Same with complexes in the DR. You can rent from a company that owns a bunch of them for 6 figures a year, or spend 7 figures and get your own…or put that money into players. Reasonable people differ on how to spend that money.

12:14

waks: i am irrationally excited about nolan jones’s year. talk me down.

12:15

Kiley McDaniel: We moved him from a 45 solidly into the 50 FV area, so we’re excited too. Question would be if the walks dry up at higher levels (I think they will some, but not a ton) and put pressure on the bat and if he sticks at 3B (improved, still not a slam dunk)

12:15

Ed: Does Leody Taveras just need to add some weight this off season to add some in game power? He seems to have most other tools

12:15

Kiley McDaniel: It’s 55 raw, which surprised both me and Eric at the Future’s Game, so it’s more in-game loft in his swing than needing the raw juice

12:16

James: What do you make of Epper’s comment “home grown tomatoes taste better than store bought”? He playing hard to get with his prospects or he just really doesn’t like trading the guys he drafts and develops?

12:16

Kiley McDaniel: Maybe he just really likes tomatoes and you guys assume he only talks about baseball?

12:17

Kiley McDaniel: Also seems like he’s trying to set the tone for a strong scouting/development system and homegrown/cheap players rather than what happened there under previous regimes. It also makes you feel better when your starting 2B is a 22 year old you signed rather than someone else’s castoff FA.

12:17

Brad: Noticed the Corner guys you mentioned from the Cape this year. Bryant Packard not in that discussion. Had as good a summer if not better and had a better College season last year than those other guys

12:17

Kiley McDaniel: Him and Brickhouse are on THE BOARD, both have a chance to go day one out of ECU

12:18

Garrett: What changed in JJ Bleday’s profile? Couldn’t be too long without a Vandy player in the top 50.

12:18

Kiley McDaniel: Hit tool/general performance improved. Was showing this new raw power late in his freshman year.

12:19

DJ Tanner: Should all minor leaguers get tested for sleep apnea after the Josh James revelation? Maybe Seuly Matias becomes to next Babe Ruth with a CPAP

12:19

Kiley McDaniel: Babe Ruth with a CPAP needs to be on a player’s weekend jersey

12:19

hEY: Are you hot?

12:19

Kiley McDaniel: oh, we’re already there

12:19

Name: You have a girl’s name, bro.

12:20

j2 board: Your J2 board sucks, man

12:20

Kiley McDaniel: cmon guys be nice

12:20

Jon: RON PAUL?

12:20

Jon: BERNIE. SANDERS.

12:20

Kiley McDaniel: didn’t see that one coming, but we can go political every now and then. see you guys next week!

We hoped you liked reading Kiley McDaniel Chat – 10/1/18 by Kiley McDaniel!

Please support FanGraphs by becoming a member. We publish thousands of articles a year, host multiple podcasts, and have an ever growing database of baseball stats.

FanGraphs does not have a paywall. With your membership, we can continue to offer the content you've come to rely on and add to our unique baseball coverage.

Support FanGraphs




Kiley McDaniel has worked as an executive and scout, most recently for the Atlanta Braves, also for the New York Yankees, Baltimore Orioles and Pittsburgh Pirates. He's written for ESPN, Fox Sports and Baseball Prospectus. Follow him on twitter.

newest oldest most voted
J.D. Martin
Member
J.D. Martin

Isaac Paredes as a Javier Baez comp? He had a tiny 4.5 % SwStr% and double digit walk rate as a teenager in AA (in an admittedly small sample size but nothing that out of line with the rest of his career). Those seem like pretty darn good peripherals to me.