Thursday, March 18, 2010

RaysProspects 2010 Predictions: Most Over-Hyped

Today's question: Which prospect is the most over-hyped(who's getting too much love heading into 2010)?

Cork Gaines: We were surprised to see Matt Sweeney in Keith Law's Top 100 (#68) and #5 in the Rays organization. His power might translate well to the big leagues, but even Law admits Sweeney's future is at first base, and slow-footed first basemen with some pop are a dime-a-dozen these days. And even then, does anybody think Sweeney is going to be a 40-home run guy? I don't.

Tommy Rancel: It's hard to pick an over-hyped prospect because I like them all, but I think Matt Moore may gotten a little more attention than he deserved. I only say that because his walks regressed in the neighborhood of 5.0/9. The good news is he's lefty, young, and talented enough that he can work on correcting that over the next few seasons.

Alex Torres. I don't mean to knock Torres, but he was deemed the headliner in the Kazmir package and may end up as the 3rd best of the Rodriguez, Sweeney, Torres package. He has the stuff for potential, but command is a big unknown at this point.

Ricky: Desmond Jennings. Yes he is excellent and yes he likely be the replacement for Carl Crawford in the Rays outfield, but that injury issue always comes up, likely to miss the rest of spring training with an wrist strain.

Jason Collette: Matt Moore. The strikeout rate is insane but so is 105 walks in 197 innings. Something has to give eventually as more disciplined hitters at the higher levels won't chase stuff out of the zone that he's been able to get away with so far.

Jake Larsen: My most over-hyped prospect is Aneury Rodriguez. While I was happy that we could turn Jason Hammel into a decent pitching prospect like Aneury, I really am not impressed with him at all. 2010 is a make-or-break year for him, especially with the youngsters coming up through the pipeline and the possibility of blue-chip prospects we could draft in the 1st and 2nd rounds(combined 6 picks, 4 of them are comp(meaning we don't get anymore re-dos/"must sign" guys))

Doug Milhoan: Of the Rays top ranked prospects, Tim Beckham is the one that I have the most doubts about. He's not a bust (yet), but he was a reach at #1 overall (and $6,150,000). Offensively, a .275/.328/.389 line by a 19 year-old SS in full-season ball isn't bad, but it's not the kind of performance you expect from a top pick. Defensively, 43 errors and a .919 fielding percentage raise serious doubts about his ability to stick at shortstop. On the basepaths he was only successful on 13 of 23 steal attempts. He has some tools that give some hope, such as good bat speed at the plate and good movement and a strong arm in the field. So even though I still like him and appreciate the tools, his #67 ranking on Baseball America's Top 100 prospects in baseball seems overly optimistic.

Kevin Gengler: I'll double-dip here and take two of the players received in the Scott Kazmir trade: Alex Torres and Matt Sweeney. Both do a lot of things well, but I think they're being rated too highly. Torres gets a ton of groundballs and strikes out plenty, but he doesn't have a good pitcher's frame and his control is suspect at best. In seven stints as a pro, his BB/9 was under 4.7 only one time, and that was in the Arizona Rookie League as a 20-year old. Sweeney swings a decent bat, but he's probably limited to 1B in the future, and I don't know if he has the power to be a starter there.


  1. Regarding Matt Moore, alot of his walks occured early in the season. His command improved the latter part of the year. It will be interesting to see how he starts off at Charlotte. My money is on Matt to have a great season and be in Montgomery by the end of the year.

  2. Both of you guys pointed out that Matt Sweeney's probable eventual move to first means he's overrated, but really I don't think he'd have stoo much a chance there even if he was an average defensive 3B because Longoria will be blocking him for years to come (hopefully).

  3. I say Torres.My second would be between kang and Lobstein

  4. disagree about Lobstein being overrated.Just wait!He'll be up there!

  5. I'd disagree on Lobstein too, but I'll buy into Kang being over-hyped. He was old for the SAL and doesn't have big home-run power. I think he might end up being a tweener a la Justin Ruggiano.

  6. Kang and Lobstein? You mean the guys I rank higher than anyone else? I didn't know my wife posted here.

    I can see why I may be too high on Kang, as KG points out. But what's not to love about Lobstein? I could see the argument he's a bit overrated, but "Most", no way.

    Really thought Beckham would garner more votes, maybe I'm just too low on him as I'm reportedly too high on Kang. But does anyone want to bet who puts up a better OPS at Charlotte this year? And yes I know Beckham plays SS vs Kang in LF, and Kang's older, so OPS isn't everything, but Beckham was the #1 overall and cost $6.15 million, Kang wasn't/didn't. Anyone? Maybe for the hat of your choice from the Stone Crabs store? And you can't be an anon, and we need a min number of AB's at Charlotte (my luck, Kang has a nice year, but Beckham goes 4-4 with 2 HR's in his first game and gets promoted to Montgomery for the rest of the season :).

    Let me know, maybe DiamondTom can set the odds...

  7. 300 AB's should be a fair number. Last year Kang got to Bowling Green late and only played in 89 games. He did post an .880 OPS and really came on strong at the end of the season pushing is BA to .307. Beckham posted a .717 OPS but faded at the plate during the last month.

    2010 should be an interesting year for these two. Beckham needs to show some real improvement to justify being the number 1 overall pick.

  8. Oh sure dTom, now that you're the house, you start pumpin up Kang to even the money. I see how you work, 50-50 means dTom gets all the juice! I could have made millions in SC hats, millions I say!!!! :)

    In light of you costing me said millions, you are now the official Treasurer of the Kang-club, now all we need is a Secretary, and lay-members, of course... ...and groupies.

    I'd hate to see how Google Translate sends this thread out to Korea too.

  9. Sorry Doug but you know the house always wins.

  10. Have seen whole Rays system. Most overhyped Hitters Beckham(Doesn't recognize slider) & Kang(Doesn't have power or speed profile and is limited in that he can only play LF).

    Overhyped pitchers Lobstein (85-88 without a consistent breaking ball or feel for a changeup). And to some degree Jeremy Hellickson(Reverse image of Jeremy Sowers for me) Will be interesting to see how he adjusts to a smaller strikezone and better hitters without power stuff.

  11. How is Helly more overhyped than someone like Moore or Colome? Helly is pitching great so far AAA, while Moore has been wild and inconsistent so far in A+. Colome is pitching well but if you think about it, he is a little old(then again we are already used to the likes of Moore,Barnese, and Wilking being 20 in A ball and pitching well).

  12. Hellickson's K/9 is way better than Sowers' was throughout the minors.