Kiley McDaniel Prospects Chat – 5/19/15

11:41
Kiley McDaniel: I’ll be back in 20 minutes to answer your questions

12:04
Kiley McDaniel: Okay I’m back let’s get started

12:04
Comment From Matt
When are you going to Greenville to see Moncada, Devers, etc?

12:05
Kiley McDaniel: Working out the days, maybe this weekend

12:05
Comment From David
I’m baffled by this Difo promotion. Can you try to explain why they would promote him this early and what should we expect out of him?

12:06
Kiley McDaniel: Sounds like they were short on 40-man hitters to call up and he’s an early-count contact guy that is less likely to be embarassed than other guys. He’s also 23 and was a late bloomer, so you can see what they’re thinking, don’t think this is helpful for his development, though.

12:06
Comment From The Big Dipper
Will Aaron Judgement day happen this year or will we have to wait until 2016?

12:06
Kiley McDaniel: Maybe September

12:06
Comment From Sam
Jose de Leon just got promoted after dominating the Cal League: is he a 50 FV yet? Could you see a team rating him that high in a trade?

12:07
Kiley McDaniel: Sure. I’d like to see him before I go too crazy, especially given the weird backstory before he broke out.

12:07
Comment From Jeff
Do you think Gallo getting some PT in the outfield accelerates his arrival date? What’s your best guess?

12:08
Kiley McDaniel: Beltre is at third, so, yeah he will move faster at another spot

12:08
Comment From All In
Hi Kiley – Castillo has been dealt.. Thoughts on this opening way for Schwarber to get a look this year??

12:08
Kiley McDaniel: Absolutely not as a catcher

12:09
Comment From mtsw
Was mentioned in a FG article the other day that “around 50%” of the time a player is listed with flu-like symptoms it’s a hangover. Does that sound accurate to you?

12:10
Kiley McDaniel: Maybe a little lower, but that doesn’t surprise me. There’s some fun David Wells stories like this. Check his day game splits.

12:11
Comment From Friedman Financial
Has Eric Jagielo’s AA power surge pushed his status way up yet? And can we call him ‘Jagiemeister’ ?

12:11
Kiley McDaniel: No. Stop that.

12:11
Comment From Friedman Financial
gun to your head, Amed Rosario or Jorge Mateo for long-term?

12:12
Kiley McDaniel: These chats are dangerous with all these people pointing guns at my head. Check out my top 200 for questions like these. Had Rosario well ahead of Mateo. http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

12:13
Comment From tony
What are your thougtJames kaprilian to the dodgers?

12:13
Kiley McDaniel: Not sure he gets that far

12:13
Comment From Jared
Any recent reports on Kolby Allard? He’s throwing again, right?

12:13
Kiley McDaniel: As far as I know, not at 100% for scouts, but he is throwing on a mound.

12:13
Comment From Trent
Do you think there is an arm slot adjustment in kodi medeiros future?

12:14
Kiley McDaniel: Wouldn’t recommend it. He was an elite prospect at 17/18 despite his size and arm slot. Wouldn’t make sense to change it this quickly.

12:14
Comment From Guest
Can you give us a sense of why the hours are so long in a MLB front office? I mean, it seems like 80% of the information is publicly available on FG. Are FO employees really “working” all those hours year round, or is it just more of the “culture” that you are available 24/7 because the jobs are so high-demand?

12:17
Kiley McDaniel: Funny way to word that question, like people are furiously hitting buttons on their computers that aren’t on so they can get a paycheck. There is a bit of “stay longer than your boss stays at work” in front offices, but there’s also a neverending list of things you could be working on.

There’s seasons where you’re doing arbitration, trade deadline, draft, post deadline waiver stuff, prepping for offseason, executing offseason, spring training, etc. and all of these pockets of the schedule could have you borderline sleeping at your desk because you can never do enough work. And if you’re low enough on the totem pole, you sometimes do your bosses work.

12:17
Comment From Mike
Is there any current players you would compare Alex Verdugo to? Do you think it’s better he gets traded rather than crack a solid Dodgers OF?

12:18
Kiley McDaniel: Kinda like Joc Pederson as an amateur. He’s in the lower rungs of the minors, you don’t trade guys when they are that far away.

12:18
Comment From To
Thanks for the chat and all the great content. Question about grading individual pitches. Does a grade you place on a particular pitch only relate to the “stuff” i.e. velocity and break of the pitch, or does it also account for the pitcher’s ability to command it?

12:18
Kiley McDaniel: Just the pitch if it’s average command. If it’s way below or way above, then that will bump it up/down a notch.

12:19
Comment From Brady Aiken
Who drafts me?

12:20
Kiley McDaniel: Way too early to know. I know of a couple teams picking in the top 20 that have already decided to not take an injured pitcher (Matuella, Aiken, Allard, Kirby). Aiken’s situation is so rare, we have to wait for the medicals before we know if it’s pick 10-15 or 40+

12:20
Comment From Kyle
Kyle Funkhouser still a top 10 consideration on your big board?

12:21
Kiley McDaniel: Outside the top 15 of my latest update, which is currently only on my computer, but will soon be on yours

12:22
Comment From The Oriole Bird
Should we expect Mike Wright to have discovered a 98-MPH fastball, which is what he had according to the gun at Camden? If he did have such a pitch, how much would that vault him upwards as a prospect?

12:22
Kiley McDaniel: He sat 92-95 and hit 97.6. This offseason, I said he was 92-94 and hits 97 mph. http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…
http://www.fangraphs.com/pi…

12:23
Comment From Kyle
Could you see the Astros pulling a fast one and grabbing someone like a Benetindi or someone else at 5 and save $ to reallocate?

12:23
Kiley McDaniel: Can’t rule that out and Mike Elias was among the heavy hitters in Saturday to see Benintendi, but I think it’ll be Bregman, Cameron or Tucker at 5 and little to no haircut on the bonus. Benintendi likely goes top 10 like those others, so not sure how much of a discount that will be.

12:24
Comment From Shawn
Most prospect writers seems to agree that Rusney has 30 SB type speed, but they seem split on his power. Do you see him as more of a 10-15 HR or 15-20 HR guy?

12:24
Kiley McDaniel: 15-20 raw power, probably plays down a bit to around 15.

12:24
Comment From Kyle
Have you heard Aiken tied to the Cardinals?

12:25
Kiley McDaniel: He isn’t tied to anyone until teams can see what’s going on with his elbow. That will change whatever they think currently, for better or worse.

12:25
Comment From guest
When I was in college I worked at the ballpark and I saw generally the same scouts game in and game out behind the plate. Are these guys advance scouts? Do they occasionally scout amateurs and do guys who scout amateurs occasionally scout major leaguers or are those completely separate worlds?

12:26
Kiley McDaniel: No. College games are scouted by area scouts, crosscheckers and scouting directors. Advance scouts only do MLB games and they go see the next team that their team faces. Sometime pro scouts (minors and majors) of VPs/special assistants (see everyone) will see particular amateur players, like front office people. Advance guys only advance or do the upper minors. And all advance guys are single or about to be single.

12:27
Comment From Steve
What range do you see CF Andrew Benintendi going?

12:27
Kiley McDaniel: 5-12

12:27
Comment From BSL
Thoughts on Blake Snell? Any new reports about his stuff this year?

12:27
Kiley McDaniel: Stuff sounds the same to slightly better, command is flashing better. I’ll go see him soon.

12:28
Comment From Richard
Thor’s been sitting 98 (averaging over 98 per pitch f/x) but his curve seems to now be a bit slurvy. Pitching in Vegas take it’s toll? Do you think he can get his “hook from hell” back?

12:31
Kiley McDaniel: PFX on the site says 95-98 t99 and I had him 93-97 t98 entering the year. http://www.fangraphs.com/pi…

We sometimes see guys with adrenaline work a couple ticks higher early int he big league career, so this isn’t completely shocking, but kinda surprising. And more arm speed usually means less feel and in this case, overthrowing the curve. Scouts told me the CB was more of a 55 than a 60 in the last year or two.

12:31
Comment From McDude
How excited are you for Jeff Hoffmans pro debut tommorow?

12:31
Kiley McDaniel: I won’t be there, but anxious to see how he does

12:31
Comment From rox fan
any word on rox targets? top 3 who falls to them or a money saving deal with a lower ranked player? any words on names they may be targeting for the 27/38/44 picks?

12:32
Kiley McDaniel: Said this in my last mock (seriously guys, go read my last few articles first if you have draft questions) that COL really likes Dansby Swanson and Tyler Jay, but think they would take Rodgers and possibly Tate ahead of Jay.

12:32
Comment From bpqa
If bat speed is literally how fast a hitter’s bat is, is there a necessary correlation of bat speed with power? Are there examples of slap hitters with outstanding bat speed, or power hitters with mediocre bat speed?

12:33
Kiley McDaniel: There is a correlation, but hand/forearm strength is the mitigating factor. Yes, there’s all kinds of hitters, including those.

12:33
Comment From Pale Hose
Hey Kiley. Can you explain the GM’s role in the draft process?

12:34
Kiley McDaniel: Differs from team to team. Dave Stewart goes and sees a bunch of players and other GMs just read some reports on the computer and waltz into the draft room the night before to see what’s up. With really high picks, all GMs have some voice in the room, but rarely the final decision.

12:34
Comment From mtsw
What’s your take on Daily Fantasy Sports? Seems a whole lot like gambling to me. Do you think the league’s partnership with DraftKings is troubling given the historic zero-tolerance gambling policy the league has had in the past?

12:35
Kiley McDaniel: It’s gambling but no one will admit that. I also have no problem with gambling, so this is just semantics.

12:35
Comment From Pale Hose
You’ve mentioned before that there isn’t much differentiation beyond pick 15 or so. Should we assume that beyond that point all teams are doing a roughly equal job?

12:36
Kiley McDaniel: Of picking the players? No. The relative talent from year to year is the same beyond that point. You pick the right/wrong guys at the time and in hindsight. Similar talent year to year doesn’t mean we can’t judge the picks.

12:36
Comment From McDude
We’ve seen draft prospects is the past few drafts with TJS not really fall much due to injury; why are Aiken and Matuella projected to go so low in many mock drafts?… wouldnt the risk be the worth the reward even in the middle of the first round?

12:36
Kiley McDaniel: Matuella hasn’t been healthy for longer than 30 innings at a time and lots of scouting directors haven’t seen him. Aiken may have the trainwreck elbow to end all elbows once we find out if the buzz is accurate or not.

12:38
Kiley McDaniel: I’ve found that fans, particularly semi-informed ones, think their team should take Matuella or Aiken in the top 10-12 picks because rehabbing injuries are automatic (Giolito, Hoffman, etc.) for these guys and these guys are really good. It isn’t that simple and these guys are different than those guys.

12:38
Comment From Marty
Do you think Trevor Story can stick at SS? He’s only played second a handful of times so far this year but the bat will probably get him promoted to the ‘topes soon.

12:39
Kiley McDaniel: Bat has been the question on him for awhile, has always been fine but not great at shortstop

12:39
Comment From soaktherich
Kiley, have you considered making a mash up video of guys with funky deliveries with some James Brown Band or Parliament Funkadelic as the accompanying music?

12:39
Comment From Joss
Is there some industry resentment when it comes to Yankee farmhands? Have the Yankees prospects become a meme? Or is it just my fandom speaking?

12:39
Kiley McDaniel: I have literally no idea what you’re talking about

12:40
Comment From STLScott
In general how difficult is it for prospects to learn to hit same side pitching? Danry Vasquez mashes rightys but struggles mightily versus lefties… THanks!

12:40
Kiley McDaniel: Differs player to player, but lefties tend to have more trouble with lefties than R on R because there’s less of them, so you see them less often.

12:40
Comment From Sleight of Hand Pro
thoughts on lance McCullers going forward?

12:41
Kiley McDaniel: I talked to scouts about him in the last few days and gave those quotes to Chris Mitchell for this piece http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

12:41
Comment From Dave
Anything new you’re hearing in regards to who the Astros would prefer between Rodgers and Swanson at #2?

12:41
Kiley McDaniel: Starting to think it’s Swanson, but he also might go 1st.

12:41
Comment From joe
what is the state of the yankees farm system thus far?

12:41
Kiley McDaniel: Florida, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York

12:42
Comment From RK
Correa and Schwarber had 20 and 30 current hit tools respectively per you last fall. Have they gotten that much better? Did you underrate them then?

12:43
Kiley McDaniel: Current hit tool is what they’d do in the big league right now. If I should’ve put them higher than that, they’d already be in the big leagues and we’ve seen with many prospects last year that big AAA numbers do not equal big MLB numbers. So, no, I wasn’t low on them then, but maybe they get adjusted up soon due to performances

12:43
Comment From soaktherich
When reading scouting reports online, I usually focus on the words “good idea of the strike zone” for hitters and “good command” for pitchers. Am I right in prioritizing these over other tools? Do scouts assign different weight to certain skills like this?

12:44
Kiley McDaniel: Yes, but it differs from scout to scout and player to player. I wouldn’t ignore tools and look for feel, I’d zero in on tools that matter (bat, for example) and look for feel with that, rather than just raw tools on their own.

12:45
Comment From tony
Have you heard anything on Yadir drake?

12:45
Kiley McDaniel: 60 power, 20 runner

12:45
Comment From Carl
What type of pitching prospect would Jameis Winston be?

12:46
Kiley McDaniel: 40 FV. Max effort reliever, 91-94 t95, 55 CB, some feel, limited innings

12:46
Comment From RAL
Are you firmly in the Tyler Jay can start camp or did you think his is destined to be a reliever (and good one) but only a bullpen arm?

12:46
Kiley McDaniel: No one should be sure of this, since no one has really seen him do it, but I’m leaning towards yes.

12:47
Comment From soaktherich
That’s some serious helium on Benintendi. Are the Red Sox interested?

12:47
Kiley McDaniel: Yep, they had a couple important dudes at the game as well.

12:47
Comment From Arquimedes
Is it possible to have more game power than raw power?

12:47
Kiley McDaniel: If you’re an amazing hitter, yes. Having trouble thinking of an example.

12:48
Comment From P
One piece of advice for someone wanting to get in the front office of a MLB team?

12:48
Kiley McDaniel: Really want it, because it isn’t worth it if you only kinda want to do it or you think it would be cool

12:48
Comment From soaktherich
What’s the baseball equivalent of SXSW, i.e. a place where fans can watch huge numbers of amateur players perform before industry talent evaluators and maybe get their big break?

12:49
Kiley McDaniel: Showcase season (PG National, Area Codes, etc.) are when scouts generally find out about kids and before the consensus has formed. Before that, it’s hit and miss since they don’t really all congregate until the summer before their draft year. Maybe 14U and 16U Team USA trials?

12:50
Comment From Colby
from an amateur scouting standpoint, does watching batting practice before a game really give you much insight to a player or is it best to just stick to in game action?

12:50
Kiley McDaniel: Need to see BP to gauge raw power and depending on the player could gauge other things as well. Game only could get you 4 walks but BP always gets you something

12:51
Comment From A-A-Ron
Is Josh Naylor going to college or signing with a team?

12:51
Kiley McDaniel: Probably sign

12:51
Comment From Rico Brogna
You mentioned last week that “big data” is the next big thing in scouting. Care to elaborate? I assume teams already code all their scouting reports into large quantitative datasets.

12:52
Kiley McDaniel: They do go into databases but those are usually separate from stats and other stuff, or more difficult to combine with other stuff. Often the stat database and scouting have different playerIDs and all that. This is changing in the last 5-10 years, but until recently the internet was better for searching for some specific stuff, for the clubs that are a little less progressive.

12:53
Comment From Cool Lester Smooth
Jesus, Boomer had a 4.62 in day games and a 3.92 in night games.

12:54
Comment From mtsw
David Wells threw his perfect game on Sunday with a 1:35 start time. Maybe the hangover helps? (His ghost-written autobiography claimed he was hungover for that game but Wells later denied it iirc)

12:54
Kiley McDaniel: I’ve been told by people that would know that the more fun version of that narrative is correct

12:55
Comment From Rose Kiley
No podcast this week?

12:55
Kiley McDaniel: Yell at Carson. Do have a special mid-week draft prospect interview pod coming up, probably next week.

12:55
Comment From John
i dont get the hangover stuff – i mean back in the day, werent guys drinking during games?

12:56
Kiley McDaniel: I know of one pitcher that you’ve all heard of and is still active that drinks in the dugout on days that he isn’t pitching. Hides it well.

12:56
Comment From Ed
So, Benintendi. Why all the sudden hype? Why hasn’t he been on anyone’s radar until now?

12:57
Kiley McDaniel: Eligible sophomore that some didn’t know at the beginning of the season he was in this class. Also, he was a contact-hitting center fielder than somehow kept his speed, added a bunch more power and hit like 20 bombs this year while hitting for more average too. He changed. Also, I had him in the 20’s to 30’s like a month ago, he just keeps getting momentum with the performance in front of important guys, just like Tyler Stephenson.

12:58
Comment From Gary
How old are you?

12:58
Kiley McDaniel: 29

12:58
Comment From Rick
What should we expect out of Adonis Garcia?

12:58
Kiley McDaniel: Emergency up/down guy

12:58
Comment From Sam
How do you decide on your musical interlude every week?

12:58
Kiley McDaniel: Just scroll through my itunes

12:58
Comment From Stark
Other than position, Kevin Newman seems to remind me a lot of Colin Moran. Low-power, high contact hitter who seems pretty divisive in scout opinions on his floor/ceiling.

12:59
Kiley McDaniel: Different position and swing mechanics but yeah, that part is accurate

12:59
Comment From McDude
Is Matt Boyd a legit prospect or just an org guy?

12:59
Kiley McDaniel: He was on the TOR prospect list a few months back and may be better than that now. Search for their name on the site first, people!

12:59
Comment From Kyle
If you are the GM for the Astros. Tate goes # 1. Who do you take #2, and who do you hope slides to you at 5?

1:00
Kiley McDaniel: Rodgers at 2. Bregman, Tucker or Fulmer at 5. Assuming that Swanson doesn’t get to 5.

1:01
Comment From Ethan Romero
I was reading your top prospects lists yesterday and just recently remembered you saying that some player “aged like a high school senior.” What do you mean by this? I’m new, and I’ve never read that description before

1:01
Kiley McDaniel: Don’t know the context, but if a latin kid is performing all season at 18 in low-a, that’s really impressive since American kids at that age are playing against terrible competition most of the year.

1:02
Comment From allen
any idea what Shohei Otani’s FV would be?

1:02
Kiley McDaniel: 65 is my guess at this point, maybe 70

1:02
Comment From Vinny Cash
Kiley, any HS prospects in NYC on on your radar?

1:03
Kiley McDaniel: Wesley Rodriguez is up to 97, but is a reliever for most scouts, so may not go high enough to sign.

1:03
Comment From Guest
How many guys in this year’s draft would you slap a 60 FV on? How many would get a 55 FV?

1:03
Kiley McDaniel: You will have that answer soon. No 60s.

1:03
Comment From All In
Are you a cult hero among your peers when you attend these minor league games? Do you have guys conveniently sitting over your shoulders and stealing your notes?

1:03
Kiley McDaniel: Now I’m going to be looking over my shoulder more often

1:04
Comment From mtsw
O’s called up Tyler Wilson, prob for bullpen duty but possibly for a spot start for an injured Tillman. Anything new on him since your ETP on the O’s?

1:04
Kiley McDaniel: Nope, but he, Mike Wright and Hunter Harvey all came from the same area scout. If Harvey gets healthy, that guy could be looking p good soon

1:05
Comment From Illidian
i will be in Ft Myers on the 13th of June and I am taking my kids to the Ft myers/Bradenton game. Are there any top prospects i could see during that game?

1:05
Kiley McDaniel: Bradenton has Meadows and McGuire, those are dudes

1:05
Comment From mtsw
For all the talk about whether guys can stick at certain positions, we live in a world where Steve Pearce is a competent second baseman somehow despite not having played infield since high school. Baseball makes no sense.

1:05
Kiley McDaniel: We talk in percentages. Weird stuff happens that we aren’t great at predicitng percentages for. Writing an article about this concept for tomorrow.

1:06
Comment From soaktherich
Does anyone currently have the rights to Jake Locker? Is he eligible to be drafted?

1:06
Kiley McDaniel: Angels own him forever and don’t seem interested in letting him play. He’s also never said he wants to play.

1:06
Comment From Kyle
Any High School kids in the state of wisconsin worth mentioning for the draft?

1:06
Kiley McDaniel: Nope but Gavin Lux for 2016 is a guy, I’m told.

1:07
Kiley McDaniel: And last year, Jeren Kendall was a guy

1:07
Comment From Proswagonist
Why would a team choose Daz Cameron over Andrew Benintendi? Similar tools but Benintendi has absolutely raked in the SEC. His numbers make Swanson and Bregman looks like choir boys. CHOIR BOYS!

1:07
Kiley McDaniel: I don’t know, but a couple seem to be thinking about it.

1:08
Comment From ck
I was told once as a young catcher to look for skinny ankles as an indicator of speed on the base paths, what other kind of body types/indicators do scouts look for?

1:08
Kiley McDaniel: You would be shocked how often scouts look at/talk about/write about teenagers’ asses. It’s a very good indicator of where the body is headed. Applies for the ladies as well.

1:08
Comment From Fred
Will you do a full 1st round mock draft?

1:09
Kiley McDaniel: Guessing it’ll be next week. It’s still silly to act like you can bring anything to the table on pick 24 at this point than a guess, but guesses are necessary when we get close enough.

1:09
Kiley McDaniel: Alright that’ll do it for this week, people.





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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dooz
7 years ago

Jessie Biddle. post hail storm concussion recovery. nice story. but what is his outlook these days?