Kiley McDaniel Chat – 4/3/19

12:12

Kiley McDaniel: Hello from ATL! I’ll be heading out soon to see prep SS Nasim Nunez and keeping my attention on the early returns from NHSI, which wasn’t loaded enough (all the relevant colleges for 2019 draft talent around Cary are out of town) for me to make my yearly pilgrimage.

12:13

Kiley McDaniel: We’ve got a newly-alive FG instagram page @fangraphs, featuring all of our fancy high speed video

12:13

Kiley McDaniel: And I’ve got a couple big features I’ve been working on, with one that’s internationally-focused coming possibly as soon as tomorrow. And we’re finishing up the lists.

12:14

Joe: Are any of the Cuban players from the list you tweeted 25/6yr guys that the Braves could possibly target since they can’t spend this July 2?

12:14

TJ: Is Miami in on any of these Cuban guys?

12:15

Kiley McDaniel: And some questions about what I reported last night, in a thread here:

 

Kiley McDaniel
@kileymcd

 

Sources: MLB sent clubs a memo today w/a list of Cuban players eligible to be signed in the 2019 int’l bonus pools. MLB is working on creating events for clubs to scout the players, who would be signed in a posting system where the Cuban gov’t gets a cut: pelotacubanablog.com/2019/04/02/fed…
3 Apr 2019

12:16

Kiley McDaniel: So there’s J2 pool eligible Cubans that, last night, MLB and Cuba announced all 34 that are eligible to be signed. There’s some good ones in there, considering the talent base in Cuba is down across the board, but it’s almost all of the guys with MLB potential

12:16

Kiley McDaniel: Clubs are still confused about how this will work. There isn’t an event organized yet, but MLB is indicating they plan to have at least one event in Cuba for clubs to come down and evaluate the players

12:17

Kiley McDaniel: They’re all pool-eligible guys that aren’t 25+6 years of pro experience, so there aren’t any true FAs in this group. And there aren’t really any big name Cubans that would be free and clear FAs at this point.

12:18

Kiley McDaniel: Much of the 2019 J2 pools have been committed for months, but there’s some money left and MLB wanted to let teams know that these guys were going to be out there so they would save some money for it, but it’s not super clear when the events will be and all the various minor details that go along with signing the players

12:19

DJ Tanner: Marco Luciano state side debut won’t be here until July correct?

12:19

Kiley McDaniel: June, but yes

12:19

Jason: Thoughts on the Acuna deal ?  Seems like great deal for the Braves ?

12:19

Kiley McDaniel: tweeted about this earlier:

 

Kiley McDaniel
@kileymcd

 

I’m happy Acuna is set for life.

He could’ve proposed a version of the Blake Snell deal (one FA year, no options), which would be something like 7 years, $60M. Hits FA for age-28 season, could get Harper deal then. Set for life, could still get $500M after.

2 Apr 2019
12:19

Kiley McDaniel: in a thread, there’s more thoughts

12:21

Kiley McDaniel: on top of that, I didn’t mention that the Braves had uniquely beneficial situation where they had a cornerstone guy who hasn’t gotten paid yet ($100k initial bonus, $500k salaries for the next few years) and there’s some rumors out there about the agent that did the deal, which you can google and kinda figure out what I’m talking about.

12:22

Kiley McDaniel: So the Braves had a guy they really wanted to lock up, who really wanted a payday pretty soon and an agent that wasn’t going to dissuade Acuna from that. Those are the conditions to get a bargain.

12:23

Kiley McDaniel: So, while i said ATL would take something like the Snell deal if Acuna’s camp proposed it, I meant if there was a different agent there. ATL knew they had a great situation and could get a beneficial outcome. If Acuna had hired Boras and they offered the deal I outline in the tweet, I think ATL would take it. But that’s an alternate reality. Happy for the kid that he got paid.

12:23

WeeJee: How heavily do you weigh command when looking at prospects?

12:25

Kiley McDaniel: Maybe a little less now than five years ago? 45 command but three good pitches five years ago meant a guy was resigned to being a 45 FV/PV as a setup guy in most cases and now those sorts of pitchers are much more valuable. It’s still really important, but pitching has evolved to where stuff and control is enough to succeed for some. Command would be quality strikes whereas control is simply throwing it in the zone

12:25

Dave: Columbia is opening with Mauricio, Newton, Vientos, Szapucki and Woods-Richardson on the roster – on a scale of 1-10, how excited should I (and Mets fans in general) be?

12:25

Kiley McDaniel: Yep I flagged Charleston (mostly for the pitching staff) and Columbia (mostly for the bats) as the teams in my general area that I need to see early and often

12:25

Kiley McDaniel: Works well for clicks that it’s NYM and NYY affiliates

12:26

Roger: Huascar Ynoa is going to AAA.  Is he moving to the pen now?  Or does this just greatly increase the odds that he moves there in MLB?

12:27

Kiley McDaniel: He was added to the 40-man and is something like a 35/45 command type, so pen became more likely once he was added…or really even before that, since he would’ve been taken in the Rule 5, so it was happening either way.

12:27

AJ: Too early to ask about teams & names for the draft? Any White Sox intel this early?

12:28

Kiley McDaniel: Not too early for the top 5 or so. Keep hearing college bats for CHW. Rutschman/Vaughn would presumably be gone and it opens up a lot after that.

12:29

Angelus Novus: Good afternoon. David Hess a 40 FV?

12:30

Kiley McDaniel: Yep

12:30

Roger: Do teams consult actuaries in the process of formulating extension offers to young players?

12:30

Kiley McDaniel: Well, they consult their analysts, who are better versed in baseball specific matters

12:31

Beetlejuice: The number of takes that say “Acuna just screwed himself out of a ton of money” appear pretty ignorant of behavioral economics. People will almost always value $100 now over a 50% chance at $200 in a year. His decision to forgo year to year arbitration and secure his future is completely in line with what most of us would do.

12:33

Kiley McDaniel: This is a bad take, which I’ve seen a lot, because it implies Acuna’s choices were this deal or just make the minimum for two years and who knows, maybe his body explodes on the field tomorrow. He had thousands of choices that would pay him now and give him the chance to get a $300M deal later. THAT is the thing that everyone is saying he could’ve done differently, not that he should’ve sat there and done nothing. And to be clear, it was people with teams and agents both immediately texting me when this came out, all gravitating to that point.

12:33

Jake: Kyran Paris at 24 to the Indians seems like a lock,

12:33

Kiley McDaniel: I mean that would make a lot of sense given CLE’s propensity to take young-for-the-class HS athletes

12:33

Kiley McDaniel: Lenny Torres, Will Benson, Quentin Holmes among the examples

12:34

Phillie Phanatic: Hi Kiley! Has there ever been a 80raw 80speed guy?

12:34

Kiley McDaniel: Sounds like Bo Jackson was the closest, if there was one

12:34

WeeJee: In dynasty league, stash Robert Puason or Marco Luciano?  And why?  Thanks.

12:34

Kiley McDaniel: Luciano. A year closer and not appreciably less upside.

12:34

Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: What’s the level of concern for Chris Sale and his velocity right now?

12:35

Kiley McDaniel: It’s not great, coach. I always wondered if the concerns in college that Sale’s and Lincecum’s frame/delivery combos would cause them to blow up were technically correct, it just came like 10 years after what those guys thought.

12:35

Mike: Hey Kiley, when do you plan on expanding your J2 list/coverage for the upcoming signing period? Thanks!

12:36

Kiley McDaniel: We may add a handful of names before the draft, but most of the expansion will be after the draft

12:36

Chuncey Wiggins: How much do you think that Venezuela’s terrible situation factored into Acuna’s decision? I can’t help but think it played a large part.

12:37

Kiley McDaniel: I would imagine he feels responsible for family members’ safety and well-being above and beyond the average player given what’s going on in VZ, so I assume that was at least some motivation. He also didn’t get a ton of money up front via a signing bonus, which is a little odd for extensions like this, basically just locked in all his future salaries.

12:38

Jake: Is Shea Langeliers still a first rounder? He’s hitting around .250 for a long time now, Cape included

12:38

Kiley McDaniel: Didn’t like the look I had, but he was fresh off the DL at that point. He’s sliding for sure, but plus catch and throw types with some offensive upside don’t last long, so I’d imagine he still goes top 30-40 no matter what

12:39

Logan: Any industry rumblings on how the Keuchel and Kimbrel sagas will be resolved? Will either or both wait until after the draft to sign?

12:39

Kiley McDaniel: I could definitely see Kimbrel doing a one year deal after the draft, then chasing his multi-year deal with no QO next offseason

12:40

Kiley McDaniel: I’m told Keuchel has turned down 4 year deals, so I think that’s just a matter of Boras promising something he couldn’t deliver and now he’s boxed himself into a no-win situation

12:40

Roger: Is the Cuban posting system really going forward?  Seems like it’d be very controversial within the US government.

12:41

Kiley McDaniel: yeah but we don’t live in a highly politicized society, so that shouldn’t be a problem

12:41

TJ: When is the 1st 2019 MLB Mock?

12:41

Kiley McDaniel: Haven’t planned it, but maybe end of the month?

12:42

Boops: White Sox like Cubans. How many of these names are they in on?

12:43

Kiley McDaniel: Clubs got the list yesterday and can’t scout the Cuban pro leagues, so it’s a bit early for that. I’m sure some clubs have liked what they’ve seen in int’l tourneys from some of these guys, but they keep those close to the vest and the open workouts often change how players are perceived after they get in crazy shape, etc.

12:43

Mark: On the amateur side of things, can see that Butler RHP Ryan Pepiot has jumped pretty high on your board. What is the reason for that?

12:44

Kiley McDaniel: Mid-90’s heat, Trackman-friendly stuff, bonkers numbers

12:48

Fan: Is Jeff McNeil for real? 140 wRC+ through 265 PA now

12:48

Kiley McDaniel: He feels underrated right now, and I know some other clubs that are hoping the Mets give up on him

12:48

Bones: Hey Kiley – Thoughts on Christian Walker? Could he parlay career MiLB into late-blooming success in AZ?

12:48

Kiley McDaniel: Always been a fan, probably won’t last long, but could be a 45 or 50 for a few years

12:49

Hank: Ynoa is on the High A roster. Not sure where that came from about Triple A.

12:49

Kiley McDaniel: That makes more sense, but he’s still on a bullpen trajectory

12:49

Sean: Curious about Brett Baty, his age would suggest that teams might shy away but his trendline keeps heading upwards.  Can he play 3B and is the bad that good?

12:50

Kiley McDaniel: He’s basically, tools-wise, in that Torkelson/Beer area where he’s really advanced in terms of hit/power and Baty can play 3B for at least a few more years. So he looks ho wa dominant 19 year old would look in terms of tools/performance, like if he was a freshman going nuts in a major conference. Have to move the goalposts a bit in terms of comps/evaluation when someone is that old

12:51

Another Braves Fan: Have you gotten to see Georgia Tech play again?  Any change with any of their evaluations?  McCann seems to be on a roll, and Connor Thomas seems nearly unhittable now.

12:53

Kiley McDaniel: McCann is 1B-only and has raw power, but struggles with velo a bit in my looks. 3rd-5th probably? Thomas is a craft/deception lefty that’s 85-90 mph with solid avg offspeed, so more senior sign type. Radcliff and Serratos could be really good if they make more contact, Hurter may be a day one guy next year. Curry is a solid 7th-10th round type

12:55

Dale: Did you touch my drum set?!?!?!

12:55

RAWR: FEED ME DRAFT

12:55

MATT. PATRICIA.: MATT. PATRICIA.

12:55

Kiley McDaniel: well that escalated fast

12:56

Kiley McDaniel: see you guys next week!

We hoped you liked reading Kiley McDaniel Chat – 4/3/19 by Kiley McDaniel!

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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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