Kiley McDaniel Chat – 4/18/18

12:10

Kiley McDaniel: Hello everyone, I’m in the South right now live from a Courtyard. I saw Ethan Hankins on Monday, Cole Wilcox and Chattanooga-Jacksonville last night. The plan is to see Kumar Rocker tonight, Anthony Seigler tomorrow, Casey Mize on Friday then head back to Florida for Wichita/UCF and Auburn/Florida.

12:10

Kiley McDaniel: Also Eric and I put up an updated draft top 55 today: https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/updated-2018-mlb-draft-rankings/

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: and we’ll have a mock draft going up tomorrow

12:11

Kiley McDaniel: and in case you don’t follow me on twitter, here’s a Nick Gordon homer from last night

 

Kiley McDaniel
@kileymcd

 

Doubled up prep RHP Cole Wilcox with a Double-A game in Chattanooga last night. Here’s FG’s 77th best prospect Twin… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…
18 Apr 2018
12:11

Tommy N.: Kelenic has risen to 8 on your updated rankings do you think the Padres could snag him at 7?

12:11

Freddy: Any idea who Atlanta is connected with?

12:12

Kiley McDaniel: Okay lots of mock questions seems like you guys are interested in what we’re hearing and also can’t wait 24 hours lol

12:12

Kiley McDaniel: Here’s what I will say

12:13

Kiley McDaniel: There appears to be a top 4-6, depending on who you ask and those will probably be the top 4-6 picks in some order. After that (specifically SD at 7 and ATL at 8, and so on) the questions are many and there isn’t much clarity. Most prospects haven’t even had signability meetings with their advisors yet, so teams obviously don’t know what prices are and the top tier scouts are still getting second looks at the top targets

12:14

Kiley McDaniel: Now we know tendencies, we’ve been to lots of top games and take notes on who is watching whom at each game, other teams will tell us who is where, etc. and we have a pretty good feel for industry consensus evaluations of the top of the draft…but multiple GMs have told us they don’t expect things to get narrowed down to a small group to choose from until much closer to draft time and maybe until they get in the room (2-3 weeks before the draft) and this is from teams in the top 10.

12:15

Joe: Depressed Royals fan here, make me feel better about our farm please? Say nice things about Matias and Khalil Lee?

12:16

Kiley McDaniel: We will be updating the top 100 regularly throughout the season (more on that soon) and Eric and I have a short list of guys who will move on due to hurt pitchers, bad spring training/early season looks and graduated prospects. Matias is one of those top few guys.

12:16

MaineBall: How much of Conine’s swing and miss problem can be attributed to him pressing to impress scouts and can it be easily fixed once he reaches pro ball?

12:17

Kiley McDaniel: He was scouted a decent amount in HS and a lot on the Cape, has always had a target on him due to his last name so I don’t think that’s it. He has huge exit velos/power so I think he just tried to hit for more power and overcorrected.

12:17

Josh Nelson: What are your thoughts regarding Nander De Sedas?

12:18

Kiley McDaniel: Covered it in the comments of the rankings article but he didn’t hit as much as people thought over the summer (it was .180 or so over multiple events) and hasn’t changed that this spring. I should see him shortly after being rained out a few times.

12:19

John S: What’s going on with Josh Naylor?

12:20

Kiley McDaniel: Seems to be hitting pretty well right now. I know SD was working on quieting his swing a bit, saw some interesting drills they were using to that end. Now I’m curious to see if his swing is noticeably different or he’s just hot.

12:20

Joe: This Griffin Canning guy, how close was he to the top 100? Do you think he’ll be in the top 50 in 2019’s list of the velocity gains stick around and he doesn’t suddenly have command issues?

12:21

Kiley McDaniel: He may be the top guy that will be added to the 100 in a few weeks. Slipped due to medical concerns but wasn’t hurt and now he’s still not hurt and throwing harder so that’s obviously less of a concern.

12:22

Joe D: Who are your top 5 international prospect for the next July 2nd signing period?

12:23

Kiley McDaniel: Eric and I haven’t worked out exactly how we want to rank them, but the roughly $2M+ bonuses should be:
Diego Cartaya, C, VZ
Marco Luciano, SS, DR
Noelvi Marte, SS, DR
Orelvis Martinez, SS, DR
Alejandro Pie, SS, DR
Osiel Rodriguez, RHP, Cuba
Jose De La Cruz, OF, DR

12:24

Kiley McDaniel: There’s more at the ~$1.3M area and a couple of those may be more mid to high 1’s, but you get the idea

12:24

Hinkie: Any truth to the “Casey Mize has an iffy elbow” rumor ?

12:26

Kiley McDaniel: He missed some time with arm stuff last year and teams don’t have his medical. He’s been healthy since then and doesn’t look hurt at all right now. Who knows what the medical will say, but unless he’s not pitching due to injury I wouldn’t worry about him any more than I would for any other healthy pitcher.

12:26

Ben: Hey Kiley,

12:26

Kiley McDaniel: Hey

12:26

Waltharius: Which Padres prospect are you most impressed so far? Any out of top 100 who has a shot at sneaking into that of next iteration?

12:26

Kiley McDaniel: Tirso Ornelas is the hot name in that system

12:26

Mark : Daulton Varsho has gotten off to a hot start. What does his trajectory look like?

12:27

Kiley McDaniel: He’s a really unique prospect. Above average runner, squatty body, could play C or 2B, has some pop and real ability to hit. Not sure how it ends up but it’s real.

12:27

Oddball Herrera: I’m sure I’m the ONLY one here with a Tyler O’Neill question…top prospects article  from Herr Longenhagen references a stance/swing change. You buying the improvements or is it just a hot streak (or a little of both)

12:28

Kiley McDaniel: Steady gradual improvements, always had tools, we’re in (if our ranking on the top 100 didn’t already indicate that) https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/2018-top-100-prospects/

12:28

Greg: Joey Bart sounds like a top 5 pick to me, yes?

12:29

Kiley McDaniel: More 6-10

12:29

Kiley McDaniel: But one team in the top 5 is taking a long look at him

12:29

Sonny: Is Ozzie at 2B because he’s better there than Dansby would be or because Dansby is the better SS?

12:29

Kiley McDaniel: They would both be above average at both spots and have shown that in the past

12:30

Johnny Tonny: Why aren’t you and Longenhagen verified on twitter? You guys should get on that, it’ll make a difference in the number of views your articles will get.

12:31

Kiley McDaniel: Not sure who to ask about this but I guess I’m asking the internet to do it now GOTTA GET THEM CLICKZ

12:31

Jim: How much does performance matter for a prospect with outrageous tools like Monte Harrison? Obviously you don’t want to see a 40 percent strikeout rate.

12:31

Kiley McDaniel: Saw him last night and he was late on everything. Probably just early season timing issues, wouldn’t worry yet.

12:31

Jimmy: Connor Scott’s tools look incredible. What’s holding him back from being ranked even higher?

12:32

Kiley McDaniel: Other than staying healthy (all minor stuff), I’m not sure. I think the industry is too low on him and the explanations I’m getting are he only went to a few things last summer, he’s had some minor injury stuff this spring and “I haven’t heard him mentioned in the top 10 picks” so I think he’ll be the guy I’m the high guy on.

12:32

The Dweez: No question, just an observation.  The Kiley chat has replaced the Eno chat as the most entertaining IMO.  Minor exception would have been the wonderment that was Carson’s awful chat on my birthday!

12:32

Kiley McDaniel: Thanks! didn’t read Carson’s awful chat but I’m tempted to now

12:33

Z: What does Seth Beer do great as a college hitter that scouts are skeptical will not translate at the pro-level? Lots of power, walks, and low Ks seems like it would play right?

12:33

Kiley McDaniel: Also referenced in the comments of the rankings article. 20 runner, DH fit, no athleticism, seen as a mistake hitter. Still top 100 since he performs and has big raw but the upside is super limited.

12:33

Vinbaka: Jesus Luzardo is off to a fantastic start (45.5k% in 14.1 innings), how high up your prospect rankings do you think he could climb by season’s end?

12:34

Kiley McDaniel: He was throwing hard in spring training and is another guy that could scoot up the list in the coming weeks if he keeps performing, because the stuff is real

12:34

Z: Any positive reports on either Shane Bieber or Aaron Civale from the first couple weeks of the season?

12:34

Kiley McDaniel: Eric got a loud one on Bieber and we already liked him, he’s also on the short list to become a 50

12:35

Nate: What does Alex Faedo need to do to get into your top 100? Excited by his first few starts

12:35

Kiley McDaniel: Velo was 88-91 in his first start and he’s a real short striders so it plays down. He’s less than an hour from me so I’ll get out to see him soon enough.

12:35

Alec Asher Wojciechowski: Josh James has been very good so far in AA, is he an older prospect taking advantage of less advanced competition, or is this a legitimate breakout?

12:36

Kiley McDaniel: Up to 98, has had a big velo jump each of the last two years, he’s a guy now.

12:36

Greg: Can Madrigal play 3rd on a regular basis?  Particularly for a club like Phillies ?

12:36

Kiley McDaniel: I bet he could catch, might even throw a knuckleball do not tell this kid he can’t do something; he’s plus at 2B with an average arm and 70 speed he can play anywhere

12:37

Kiley McDaniel: he may be my new Albies how dare you question either of my tiny adult sons abilities

12:37

Percy Miracles: Hi Kiley,

12:37

Kiley McDaniel: Hi

12:37

Sharm: What does it take for Ethan Hankins to get into top 5 consideration?

12:41

Kiley McDaniel: That ship has sailed. I was commenting to a friend yesterday that I couldn’t imagine years ago that I’d see a 6’5 high school kid that’s still 17 hit 96 mph and not be impressed but that’s kinda where it is right now, given the expectations and what he’s done in the past. Someone may give him 15-20th overall money, I mean there were two GMs at his last game and another one at the game before that so teams are interested, but there’s so many prep arms in this class with less concerns and comparable strengths. Doesn’t mean he can’t be a good big leaguer or I’m not rooting for it. Seems like readers have a hard time processing guys rising/falling when they’ve heard a guy will be X for months over the winter/early spring.

12:44

Kiley McDaniel: Some of the comments on the list are pretty condescending to Eric and I, like we must be wrong because he was ranked somewhere else months ago or on another site. We’ve talked about all the things you guys are asking regarding rising/falling and are we calibrated correctly on this guy both amongst ourselves and with scouts/execs/advisors.

12:44

Matt: You guys have said that Nolan Gorman has lost twitch and flexibility. Does he profile more as a 40/45 3b now where a team just hopes the bat is special enough for 1b long term? Or is it more likely he gets back to where he was physically and sticks at 3b?

12:45

Kiley McDaniel: I mean you’re asking me to project how much an 18 year old kid will work out after he gets millions of dollars…I have no idea, but he’s a 40/45 third baseman right now. It’s not bad weight, he’s just a big, powerful kid

12:45

Dunt: You guys believe that Bohm has the ability to stick at 3B, but his defensive numbers on the surface suggest that he hasn’t been great there this season. Where have his defensive struggles come from?

12:47

Kiley McDaniel: We don’t use those defensive numbers on big leaguers with professional scorers keeping track so it would be pretty silly to use those on college players in small samples. Some think he won’t be able to play 3B long-term, but I do and I think a majority of scouts do. He’s 6’4, though, so it’s not like it would be a huge upset if he moves eventually.

12:47

Percy Miracles: Hi Kiley, do minor league players have to pay for their own bats and other equipment or do the MLB teams pay for it?

12:47

Kiley McDaniel: Players do, but most of the ones you’ve heard of have endorsement deals and get free bats.

12:48

Bob: Looking at the draft board descriptions guys ranked in the mid 20’s scouting reports sound like 50/55 FV descriptions. Is this an extremely deep draft or were you guys focusing on the positives at this point

12:48

Kiley McDaniel: The top four players are 55s, I think the 50s go down to 13th overall right now.

12:49

capconstrained: Going back to your IFA strategy of 5 DSL teams, shouldn’t a team like the Marlins that can’t afford big salaries and benefits from proximity be all-in on this strategy?

12:49

Kiley McDaniel: If the club isn’t spending much on bonuses, they probably aren’t getting the resources to get multiple teams.

12:50

CamdenWarehouse: Can you give a Scout update?

12:50

Kiley McDaniel: She’s staying with my sister while I run around the south and she’s finding out that cats don’t like dogs and little boys have more energy than she does

12:51

YouthBerry: What sort of power upside does Brice Turang have?

12:51

Kiley McDaniel: 50/55 raw power, the approach hasn’t tapped into it much this year, but there’s feel to hit, so there’s a chance for 15-20 homers

12:52

Soxfan2: Can Madrigal play SS in the majors or is he strictly a 2B?

12:52

Kiley McDaniel: For the teams like OAK and TB that don’t care as much about range, he could do it. He’s better than Eckstein was.

12:52

chuckNchino: Could Brandon Lowe be considered a poor mans Willie Calhoun?  Think Lowe could see MLB this year, or will TB move him slowly?

12:53

Kiley McDaniel: We like him but he isn’t that sort of player

12:53

Frank: Where do you see Seth Beer going in the draft?

12:53

Kiley McDaniel: probably 2nd, maybe 3rd

12:53

MR: Do you have anything new on Cal Quantrill?  You (and others) were down on him, but he seems to be throwing the ball well this year (coming from a box score scout of course)

12:53

Kiley McDaniel: Eric saw him this spring so he’ll have more details, but it isn’t the same report as when he was an amateur

12:54

Heath: Do you think Grant Little could sneak into the top 2 rounds?

12:54

Kiley McDaniel: He’s 55th on the top 55. He’s 3rd-4th for more scouting-oriented teams but I think he goes 2nd or early 3rd to an analytically-inclined team

12:54

Eric: Thoughts on Albies’ power breakout?

12:55

Kiley McDaniel: He’s always lifted the ball a lot and not had huge raw power, but the bat control to tap into it elevate and celebrate little man

12:55

Heath: Have you heard anything on New Hampshire 1B Grant Lavigne? Think he signs?

12:55

Kiley McDaniel: 50/50 right now, got a Gavin Sheets comp on him, in the discussion to go in the 2nd if the price/team is right

12:56

Sean: Does the cold weather mean that potentially better players from the East coast will fall in the draft?  I’m just wondering if this might be an opportunity for teams with large draft pools to add in the middle of the top ten rounds

12:57

Kiley McDaniel: Not broadly, bc everyone saw what happened with Trout and is conscious of it. Possibly some guys will slide to overslot bonus spots since not every team will have the same eval, but teams are smart enough to stay on top of things, especially in a really deep NE prep crop this year

12:57

Billy Beane: You have any thoughts on Lou Trivino?

12:57

Kiley McDaniel: sorry just lee trevino

12:57

Matt: You said a while back that Bohm wasn’t as far from a Bryant-level prospect as one might think. Do the Bryant comps mostly come from his frame or could he really get to that level? Seems like if he was that close he’d be the sure 1-1 right?

12:58

Kiley McDaniel: Frame, profile, raw power. The swing isn’t the same and Bohm’s needs some adjustments. I think the athleticism/twitch is a little less than Bryant. He isn’t that level of prospect but the fact that he COULD be that sort of player is exciting.

12:58

John Stamos: Just picked up The Black Swan because of your past endorsement, thanks so much!

12:58

Kiley McDaniel: Big fan of your hair, sir

12:59

Danny: Does Cole Winn make it to the Yankees at 23? Any notable southern california pitchers the Yankees may look at in rounds 2 and 3?

12:59

Kiley McDaniel: Possible, prep righties tend to slide and there’s lots of them this year. That’s about Winn’s range. SoCal isn’t as top heavy as usual this year.

12:59

Tom: What are your thoughts on Dansby’s transformation this year? Is what he is doing sustainable? Are we still in SSS arena?

12:59

Kiley McDaniel: Shortened the swing and I think it works for him

12:59

Man: Thoughts on Zach Watson at LSU?

1:00

Kiley McDaniel: 2nd-3rd most likely, chance to play CF, has some pop, good athlete

1:00

JayHoss: what happened to Bubba Starling?

1:00

Kiley McDaniel: Still kicking! probably a big leaguer!

1:01

Jason: Please tell me the Rays have been linked to Turang, even if it’s a lie.

1:01

Kiley McDaniel: This is a very specific and troubling fetish

1:01

Jor: Is Shane Beiber more of a command or control guy? Obviously he stays in the strike zone but is he hitting his spots well enough to succeed in the bigs without elite stuff?

1:01

Kiley McDaniel: One scout told us it’s 80 command

1:02

Mountie Votto: So who do the Reds take at 1-1 in 2019? 🙁

1:02

Kiley McDaniel: lol every chat has one and you’re ours

1:02

Zonk: How does blood line impact your evaluation of a prospect?  For example, does it color your eval of William Contreras?

1:03

Kiley McDaniel: It helps. We can’t quantify who has good genetics or else we’d probably know when pitchers are getting hurt. So, if a guy has a successful big leaguer in close relation, that helps. Also means he’s been around the game, knows how to handle himself, can get advice, etc.

1:03

MaineBall: But or sell: Zac Lowther is in Baltimore’s rotation by the end of next season

1:03

Kiley McDaniel: If he’s getting there, it’s gonna happen fast. Lots of deception

1:04

Turk: Does Moncada have bad plate discipline, or just bad bat to ball skills?

1:06

Kiley McDaniel: Pitch selection is fine, most of what he does is well above average. Bat control is below average.

1:06

Tat: Who is the bottom guy that’s dropped from the top 100 due to performance?

1:06

Kiley McDaniel: Haven’t decided that yet, but Ragans will fall off due to TJ. The rest of the list is ON NOTICE

1:07

Guest: Is this a driving trip or flying?

1:07

Kiley McDaniel: Driving this one

1:07

Schoop of Ice Cream: How high are you on Taylor Trammel? I’ve seen a few folks list him as the Acuna type not for talent but as the guy who rockets into the top 10-15 in the prospect ranks by years end

1:08

Kiley McDaniel: We gotta cool it with the Acuna/Trout comparisons, guys. If there were 20 versions of each of them, then they’d be so ordinary we wouldn’t use them as comps. Some players MIGHT turn into it one day, in a perfect world, some players have a tool or two like them, or have mannerisms/frames like them. Let’s try to keep these things separate.

1:09

Fonz: Where does India rank in June if he keeps hitting like this through Draft Day?  Also, would anybody draft him to play SS?

1:10

Kiley McDaniel: Probably stays in the 20s, but I guess could sneak into the late teens if a numbers teams goes gaga. He’s fringy there for me, so even if an OAK/TB type club gave it a shot I’m not even sure they’d be okay with it, but he catches the ball and has enough arm.

1:10

Big 10: Top 3 pitching prospects in the Big 10 for this years draft?

1:10

Kiley McDaniel: Ryan Feltner at Ohio State is the only top 5 round guy coming to mind. Tanner Andrews at Purdue is a nice senior sign in the mid 90s.

1:12

Mountie Votto: Is there any chance Isabel hits enough to tap into that 70-power for the Reds?

1:12

Kiley McDaniel: It’s 80 raw and probably not

1:12

Mike: What is the concern level in bart’s swing and miss? Is he a .230-.240 hitter or could he be .270-280?

1:13

Kiley McDaniel: That’s the concern. Most say 45 bat

1:13

Fonz: Seriously though, where would Sean Hjelle have been ranked if Cistulli hadn’t accidentally cut his entry in editing?

1:13

Kiley McDaniel: That’s the guy we’re lower on than most. 89-91, fringy offspeed, average command, above control, it’s all plane and moxie. Late 2nd-3rd for us but I bet someone takes him 25-50.

1:14

proposition party: Compare and Contrast: Jordan Groshans and Carter Kieboom

1:14

Kiley McDaniel: Similar guys, Kieboom had a better hit tool at draft time, Groshans may be a little more athletic

1:14

Roman Numeral Three: A lot has been said about the Yankees’ ability to get increased velocity out of minor leaguers. Far less has been said about *how* they do it. Any inside insight? Surely if it’s just identification and development, then the Yanks know something most other teams don’t.

1:15

Kiley McDaniel: BLACK MAGIC (smoke bomb, chat disappears)

1:15

Pete: Can Vandy fans get their hopes up about Hankins coming to Nashville? Do any of the top guys have a chance to not sign?

1:16

Kiley McDaniel: He’s signing. Get your hopes up about Rocker and Banfield, there’s a chance on those.

1:16

JJ: Do draft rumors play into your rankings (Swaggerty(?)) at all?

1:16

Kiley McDaniel: Nah, just on talent. Mock is for rumors

1:16

Larry: You seem a bit high on Alek Thomas.  Good feel to hit but avg tools across the board and limited upside

1:16

Kiley McDaniel: Tell that to the teams in the late 20s that are hot after him

1:17

Kiley McDaniel: But thanks for your super reasoned opinion where you read a sentence and invalidated all of our work

1:18

Phil: Please…..anyone….someone…..talk to me about Mac Williamson.

1:18

Kiley McDaniel: a less troubling but still weird fetish

1:18

Mountie Votto: Dick Williams was recently asked about a one-team DSL strategy and he said it “frees us up to do a lot more in terms of trying out players – it frees up a field, it frees up bedrooms, to get more players in there for extended looks to get proprietary looks at them. From a scouting perspective there’s a benefit to having just the one team.”  Care to comment?

1:21

Kiley McDaniel: “I don’t like your idea of buying a discounted mansion that I can afford because it’ll take so much longer to clean than my studio apartment.”

1:21

MaineBall: When does the buy/sell round begin?

1:22

Kiley McDaniel: Oh yeah, we were supposed to do that today! I want to BUY and SELL concepts. Sigh, next week.

1:22

Lazaro Armentaros: Is Jo Adell handsome enough that it won’t matter if he Ks at %50?

1:22

Kiley McDaniel: that box jump tho

1:24

Matt Boyd: MATT BOYD?

1:24

Moltar: mmmmmmmm Alejandro Pie

1:24

Turgid: My wife thinks Miguel Andujar is pretty. Like if baseball doesn’t work out, he could be a male model. That’s what she says at least. Something about the bone structure of his face. Shape of his eyes. And of course his high butt.

1:24

Kiley McDaniel: oooh we’re getting to that time

1:25

Mr. Fister: The entire plot structure of Star Wars was copied from Frank Herbert’s Dune series.  Fight me!

1:25

cole reuter: hey baseba;; fanms

1:25

colr: dad

1:25

Mr. Fister: I wanna rock!

1:25

Kiley’s Ex-GF: Are you still choosing baseball over me?

1:25

Kiley McDaniel: Yes.

1:26

Kiley McDaniel: See you guys, minus that last questioner, next week! And don’t forget (in case I do) that we’re def doing BUY OR SELL.





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.

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Alex Trebek
4 years ago

Every time I hear about Kumar Rocker, I pretend he is John Rocker’s son. I want this to be real.