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The Lansing Lugnuts are back in the postseason for the first time in three years to highlight a .500 night for the #BlueJays affiliates. New Hampshire had the night off.

Buffalo 9 Lehigh Valley 4

Jason Leblebijian cranked a grand slam as part of a three-hit night and Darnell Sweeney had a home run among his three hits and three runs knocked in. The on-base champs however were Anthony Alford who walked and stole a base to supplement his three-hit effort and Reese McGuire who had two hits, a walk and a hit by pitch. Roemon Fields singled twice and walked while Rowdy Tellez did the opposite with a hit and two free passes and stole a base.

Chris Rowley was the winning pitcher with 6-2/3 innings of two-run ball. He walked four but gave up three hits while whiffing seven.

Charlotte 8 Dunedin 6 (11 Innings)

Kevin Smith and Ivan Castillo had two hits apiece and Riley Adams had a hit and two walks. However, Adams committed two passed balls behind the plate.

Yennsy Diaz needed one more out for a quality start. He yielded three runs on seven hits and four walks but struck out seven. Juliandry Higuera gave up two runs in the 11th to take the loss.

Former Jay Adeiny Hechavarria went 0-for-3 in this one.

Lansing 4 Fort Wayne 2

The Lugnuts clinched a playoff spot thanks to five shutout frames of two-hit ball from Colton Laws. He didn't walk anybody, struck out two and induced seven groundball outs.

Samad Taylor was 3-for-4 with two RBI.

DSL Padres 5 DSL Blue Jays 2

Erickvi Celedonio had two hits and a walk in a losing cause. Miguel Hiraldo was 0-for-4.

Erick Tehran pitched 2-2/3 shutout innings of no-hit ball, striking out five to offset three walks. WIlliams Moreno chipped in with two scoreless frames but Miguel Olivo gave up four runs in the ninth to take the loss.

*** 3 Stars!!! ***

3. Colton Laws, Lansing

2. Jason Leblebijian, Buffalo

1. Anthony Alford, Buffalo

Extra Innings... takes a look at the new logo of the Buffalo Wings.
The Vancouver Province has a story on North Vancouver native and Blue Jays 25th round pick Will McAffer.
C's Plus Baseball has a chat with Dunedin catcher Riley Adams.

Lugnuts Playoff Bound | 58 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
GabrielSyme - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:35 AM EDT (#359784) #
Samad Taylor is quietly having a nice season - an increased walk rate, more extra-base hits, and a respectable strikeout rate. He's even stealing a few more bases. His overall line is depressed by a low babip this year, but there's a lot to like in what he's been able to do as a 19-year-old in full-season ball.
Gerry - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:39 AM EDT (#359785) #
Jon Heyman is reporting that Groshans has signed with the Jays. There is also a separate report that 15th round pick Troy Watson will sign for $100,000.
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:47 AM EDT (#359787) #
It's a mixed bag with Taylor (and I'm a big fan).  He is hitting the ball in the air a lot, with medium range power.  That's probably not ideal.  He'd probably more effective if he leveled things off a bit and hit some more line drives- he's fast enough that a ground ball is not a terrible outcome.

The other negative is the number of baserunning foibles.  Last night, he was caught stealing trying to steal third base with 2 outs in a tie game, and was thrown out at the plate. 

He's only 19 and I have no problem with him starting 2019 with Lansing.  There's no rush. 
finch - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:52 AM EDT (#359788) #
Groshans and Kloffenstein both signed as per MLB Trade Rumors.
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 12:16 PM EDT (#359791) #
I wondered how Griffin Conine did in Duke's last game.  Here's the answer: 2-3 including a double, a walk, a HBP and no strikeouts.  Solid. 
John Northey - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:15 PM EDT (#359797) #
Good old Bluebird Banter has their draft signing page up.  Just has Kloffenstein for $2.5 mil listed.  Also has 'will sign' for Groshans (1st round), Chris Bec (5), Addison Barger (6), Mike Pascoe (24).

Players ranked on pre-draft lists are...
Top 100: Jordan Groshans (37), Adam Kloffenstein (43), Griffin Conine (51), and Sean Wymer (88).  The Jays top 4 picks.  Having 4 top 100's is good.

Top 200: Kameron Guangorena (112..drafted at #1076 so very unlikely to sign but might get lucky), Addison Barger (145 picked in 6th round), Kyle Luckham (191 27th round)

Ranked at all (top 500): John Aiello (211, 14th), Parker Caracci (245 37th), Nick Podkul (303, 7th), Joey Murray (321, 8th), Troy Squires (426, 23rd), Brett Wright (453, 26th), Cal Stevenson (454, 10th), Nick Allgeyer (460, 12),  Josh Hiatt (465, 16th), Cre Finfrock (483, 29th), Austin Havekost (496, 17th).

4 top 100's and 7 total top 200's is decent given the 100th pick was made in the 3rd round and the 200th early in the 7th (before the Jays pick).  Now, as to signing them ... outside of Guangorena I think the rest of the top 200 are possible.  Luckham is also unlikely as 27th round is normally a 'what the heck, he might decide he really wants to play'.
John Northey - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:16 PM EDT (#359798) #
uglyone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:28 PM EDT (#359800) #
Jim Callis @jimcallisMLB
1st-rder Jordan Groshans signs w/@BlueJays for $3.4 million (pick 12 value = $4,200,900). Texas HS SS, some of best power in @MLBDraft, promising hitter too, likely moves to 3B & can be good defender there. Kansas recruit.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:42 PM EDT (#359804) #
so where do people think the new draftees rank in our system?
Gerry - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:51 PM EDT (#359805) #
The Jays save $800k on Groshans and go overslot by $1M on Kloffenstein.

They could save $500k on their two senior signs. but they still need to find more.
ramone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 01:58 PM EDT (#359807) #
This was from twitter last night:

Robert Murray

Verified account

15h15 hours ago
Source: #BlueJays sign 15th round pick RHP Troy Watson for $100K. Strong deal for a player who missed half of his last season.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 04:21 PM EDT (#359813) #
Ben Nicholson-Smith @bnicholsonsmith
#BlueJays announced that they have signed nine of their top 10 draft selections, 26 picks in total

I think Conine is the 1 of 10 not signed yet.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 04:24 PM EDT (#359814) #

Yep, Conine is the only one of the top 15 not signed yet.

26 guys inked in total.

Mike Green - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 04:43 PM EDT (#359815) #
The first and third picks are pretty clearly behind anybody who is a good prospect or better at double A or triple A level (Jansen, Gurriel Jr., Alford,  Borucki, SRF, Vlad Jr., Bichette, Biggio).  If you want to take it a level or two down, you've got Kevin Smith, Pearson, Adams, Warmoth, Chavez Young, Samad Taylor.  I'd certainly have them behind Pearson, Smith, Young and Taylor, and I'd have to think about Adams and Warmoth (as well as Romano, Urena and Reese McGuire at higher levels). And then you've got Pardinho and Hiraldo in the lower minors. 

In both cases, probably about 15th, maybe somewhat lower. 
uglyone - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 05:20 PM EDT (#359816) #
I see that, but I like Kloff enough that I start to hesitate when it gets to names like Borucki, Gurriel, Biggio, Young, Warmoth.

My first take is that I think Kloff and Groshans are borderline top-10 but you might be right that they're not.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 05:30 PM EDT (#359817) #
The FG boys gave both the draft pick 45 grades, and a bit on the lower end.

Of our top 8 (45 or better), only Alford and Warmoth have regressed, Alford from 55 to maybe 50, Warmoth from 45 to mid-low 40. SRF and Lourdes jump to 45 from 40. I'd add Smith and Young to the 45's although I don't know if the FG boys would. I'm less bullish on Biggio, Romano, Taylor, wouldn't bump them ahead of the new kids yet, nor anyone else.

So that puts them around 12-13.

System just getting stronger and deeper.

Nigel - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 06:02 PM EDT (#359819) #
hypobole, I generally agree with all of that. I do think people are underestimating Taylor. For context, he is a full three years younger than Warmoth and only 16 months older than this year's first round pick. Taylor isn't blowing the doors off, but he's holding his own in Lansing. There is no chance that any of the high HS picks from this draft are holding their own in Lansing next year and very little chance of that the year after. Taylor would be ahead of this year's picks for me and would definitely be ahead of (frankly by quite a bit) Warmoth for me.
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 06:23 PM EDT (#359821) #
I agree generally with that list, but I'd swap Biggio with Chavez Young in the group of 45s.
bpoz - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#359822) #
Old news !!!!! I finally realized that I should check the standings for the Lugnuts. The are in the playoffs.

I want to celebrate. Cheers!!!!!!
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 06:45 PM EDT (#359823) #
I also just wanted to say it hasn't been 24 hrs since Connine finished his NCAA career, so thats probably why he hasn't signed yet.
dan gordon - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#359824) #
Well, they went overslot by $1.8 million on Kloffenstein, while saving only $800,000 on Groshans, so there's still $1 million to find. They may need to go underslot on Conine. Would be nice to know what they spent on the other guys in the top 10. As Gerry says, they could have found a chunk of it on the 3 seniors, possibly $600,000 or so. I imagine they have a pretty good idea of what Conine is after, and probably will be able to get him. If so, it looks like a pretty good draft result.
bpoz - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 07:32 PM EDT (#359825) #
Conine is a protected pick. How much leverage does he have? He is not a HS pick. Also paying a financial penalty is not a problem for this FO. IMO.
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 08:30 PM EDT (#359827) #
Bichette, Noda, and Taylor have homered so far tonight. Lots to like on the farm this spring.
Gerry - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 09:35 PM EDT (#359830) #
Jon Harris pitched six no hit innings tonight and was pulled on 89 pitches. Danny Young came on in relief and gave up a double to the second hitter.
85bluejay - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:21 PM EDT (#359833) #
Jon Harris has teased so much over years with encouraging short stretches that I have whiplash - what's encouraging is that he did it against a team with a winning record that hit him hard his last start and in his last 3 starts - 18 innings 20K/3BB - here's hoping he's turned a corner.

I liked that Bo Bichette hit his homer against one of the better pitching prospects in the minors and that he's had a nice run without Vlad in the lineup.
85bluejay - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:28 PM EDT (#359834) #
If Kevin Smith keeps hitting, then it will be interesting to see what happens when Logan Warmoth returns - don't want to see Smith playing 3B too often - wonder if Bo moves to AAA and Smith to AA - don't think the jays would send Warmoth to Lansing.
dan gordon - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:37 PM EDT (#359835) #
Lots, indeed. McGuire had another multi-hit game, and homered. Tellez was 3 for 4 with a HR. Those 2 are really heating up in AAA. Bichette's HR pushes his OPS back up over .800, after bottoming out at .687 on May 23rd. Brayden Bouchey had another good relief appearance. Harris keeps teasing with the occasional good game amidst a sea of mediocrity.

In the lower minors, Patrick Murphy pitched his 5th decent game in a row, with 7 K's, only 1 walk and 1 run allowed in 7 innings. He was a 3rd round pick in 2013, but didn't really start his pro career until 2016 due to injuries. Doing a pretty good job in Dunedin, and maybe a candidate for NH before year end. Kevin Smith had 2 more hits. Taylor's HR was his 5th and raised his OPS to .715. Noda is the hottest hitter in the system, hitting .400 over his last 10 games with 6 HR's and 6 walks. Miguel Hiraldo had a single, double and a walk. Gulf Coast League for Miguel sometime this year?
ComebyDeanChance - Tuesday, June 12 2018 @ 11:43 PM EDT (#359836) #
The first and third picks are pretty clearly behind anybody who is a good prospect

That may be clear to you, it's certainly not to me.
dan gordon - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 12:11 AM EDT (#359838) #
The minor league shortstop depth in quality and quantity the Jays have is truly remarkable. Gurriel, Urena, Bichette, Smith, Warmoth, Vicuna, Gudino, De Los Santos, Hiraldo, Leonardo Jimenez, Groshans, Barger. Would be interesting to fast forward 20 years and see how much mlb talent this crop yields.
John Northey - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 01:32 AM EDT (#359839) #
When you've been around over 40 years you learn not to get too excited about prospects.  Yes, when they do what Vlad has been doing it is hard not to be excited but the rest...well...

There is a google sheet out there with 1990 to 2010 for BA top 100 prospects.  Lets take the #1 each year and see how they did..  Lets check just the 90's and 2000.  Largely because I need sleep.

  • 1990: Steve Avery
  • 1991: Todd Van Poppel
  • 1992: Brien Taylor
  • 1993: Chipper Jones (HOF)
  • 1994: Cliff Floyd
  • 1995: A-Rod (might get HOF someday)
  • 1996: Andruw Jones
  • 1997: Andruw Jones (Vlad Sr was #2)
  • 1998: Ben Grieve
  • 1999: Stephen Drew
  • 2000: Rick Ankiel

Top Jays...
  • 1990: John Olerud
  • 1991: Eddie Zosky
  • 1992: Derek Bell
  • 1993:Carlos Delgado (#4)
  • 1994: Alex Gonzalez (#4 - Delgado was #5 and Jose Silva #10)
  • 1995: Shawn Green (#6)
  • 1996: Marty Janzen (#40)
  • 1997: Roy Halladay (#23)
  • 1998: Roy Halladay (#38)
  • 1999: Roy Halladay (#12)
  • 2000: Vernon Wells (#4)
Interesting lists eh?  Halladay as the top Jay prospect was dead on but many guys who never were close to All-Star level, let along HOF level were ranked higher those years.  Just one HOF'er as #1 overall with another who would be if not for PED's.  1996 the Jays also had Chris Carpenter and  Shannon Stewart ranked and Halladay was in the system then.  Marty Janzen had tons of hype but no substance.  Imagine how excited we'd be for 3 in the top 10 like 1994 although we have 2 right now in Vlad and Bo.  Imagine if they ended up like Gonzo and Delgado - that'd be a solid return but far below what many dream of now.
hypobole - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 08:59 AM EDT (#359845) #
Random stuff.

If 29th overall pick from 2015 Jon Harris becomes the same as 29th overall pick from 2013 Ryne Stanek, i.e. effective middle reliever, would you be pleased? At this point, I would.

Biggio, non-prospect promoted aggressively, rakes for 2 months in AA while getting mixed reviews for 2nd base defence. Bat cools off so far in June (.200/.341/.257). Is he a better prospect than Groshans, HS kid who hasn't played a lick of pro ball yet? Pure opinion.

Nigel is correct about Taylor holding his own at a young age in A ball, but almost all 1st round picks #10 to #41 from 2 years ago are as well, with more seeming over than under Taylor's performance, so that should be the baseline for Groshans. That said, maybe I am underselling Taylor a bit. 2 televised series at the end of June/early July to watch Taylor in action.
mendocino - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 09:52 AM EDT (#359846) #
Starting Friday all Lugnut home games on
Mike Green - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#359847) #
CBDC and hypobole,

My take on Groshans and Kloffenstein.  I am assuming they're typical late supplemental- early to mid 2nd round picks, as the consensus of draft analysts would suggest and my very limited review of video (and the way their slot money was allocated) is consistent with.  There is the possibility that Groshans hits like Bo Bichette which would make him a better prospect than most of the guys I listed, but there is a greater likelihood in my view that he hits like Mitch Nay or Dwight Smith or Jacob Anderson or Justin Jackson or Eric Eiland or J.B. Woodman or Kellen Sweeney or Kenny Wilson or John Tolisano or Curtis Thigpen (the Blue Jays supplemental and 2nd round position player picks over the last 15 years).  Most of them didn't make it to the high minors as good prospects. As for Kloffenstein, I am less comfortable.  He looks good in the video and the club has had a lot of success in turning supplemental and 2nd round pitching prospects into good pitchers in the high minors.  I generally prefer hitting prospects to pitching prospects, but your mileage may vary. If someone likes Kloffenstein more than SRF or Borucki  or Biggio or Gurriel Jr., that's fine.  I guess that I am particularly sensitive to the role that injuries play in the dropout rate for pitchers between draft and the high minors. 
uglyone - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 10:10 AM EDT (#359848) #
Nigel I like your take on Taylor for sure. He's only a year older than Groshans but is more than holding his own in Lansing. A bit too much swing and miss in his game but he can hit and has power...and this year he's improved in terms of patience and drawing walks. And while his position is uncomfirmed here seems to be enough physical talent for there to be plenty of defensive upside for him at a bunch of different positions.

But I think we should stop comparing prospects to Warmoth - everybody looks like a good prospect compared to what Warmoth is doing so far. (To be fair Warmoth could easily improve, but so far not so good).

and Hypo I like your idea of trying to slot the prospects in on that scouting grade scale. But man is it tough. I might slot them in like this:

70 - Vlad
65 - Bo
60 -
55 - Jansen
50 - Pearson, Alford, SRF

Yeah I think SRF has snuck back up there. I might even slot him ahead of Alford.

then there's a whole mess of guys who are either 45s (or close to it).

Low Upside/near MLB ready 45s: Borucki, Zeuch, (Biggio, Gurriel, Urena, McGuire)
High Upside/longterm prospect 45s: Smith, Kloffenstein, Groshans, (Young, Taylor, Pardinho, Hiraldo)

Really tough/fun to try and sort out.

Though now that I look at it, I may have sorted it out already in my head using those brackets - I guess I'm leaning towards the Borucki, Smith, Kloffenstein, and Groshans as the 5 clear 45s at this point.

And Smith might be the top guy in that group for me already.

also, Hypo, yeah I'd be super pleased if Harris turned into a good reliever... but I'm not hopeful.
Mike Green - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 10:34 AM EDT (#359850) #
I don't see Biggio as low upside.  He's now had 240 PAs in the Eastern League and (even after his current slump) he's one of the top 5 hitters in the league as a 23 year old second baseman.  He has hit well enough that (if he can sustain it) he would be a good corner outfielder even if his fielding at second base was a problem.  The issue to my mind with him is not upside, but risk.  What if the hitting tear he was on was just a blip? In a way, he's like Alford- a prospect who has had some success in the high minors at age 23 and could still be a very good major league player- but there is a lot of risk attached. 
hypobole - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 10:36 AM EDT (#359851) #
Mike, maybe the Jays positional player development group is better than previously? Definitely on the hitting side, try to find anything praiseworthy from years past. And it's a totally different group that drafted Groshans than kept picking toolsy kids who couldn't hit.

Like I said, the FG guys, who obviously aren't right all the time but who I trust more than other evaluators, gave Groshans a 45 FV. Which fits in around 12-13.
uglyone - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 10:49 AM EDT (#359852) #
Mike - Biggio is definitely the toughest to get a handle on at this point. I mean I look at it again just after posting and I think Biggio maybe slots in right behind smith and just ahead of Borucki, Zeuch, Kloff, and Groshans. I guess I slotted him in as low upside just because a) he's not young and b) there is so little leeway for him defensively and c) while I love what he's done this year I still have to assume some regression there for now. But then again he's a) not old, b) potentially good enough to be a middle infielder, c) he's just destroying it this year. He's a great prospect to debate right now and I'm not sure where I stand there yet.

On another note:

Rowdy Tellez is now at 115wrc+ at an age appropriate 23 in AAA.

That's still not near good enough to get excited about for a 1B/DH, but that is finally at the very least a "good" AAA hitting line.

The thing I'm keeping an eye on is his power - or lack thereof. IMO that .133iso is nowhere near good enough. That has to get up over .200 for him to be interesting again.

But that's why I'm encouraged by his more recent line over about half his season's worth of games:

Last 25gms: 9.1b%, 16.2k%, .324babip, .294avg, .200iso, 144wrc+

If he can get his season line looking closer to that by the end of the year, then he's back to being a legit prospect again imo.
Mike Green - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 11:13 AM EDT (#359854) #
I do have an issue with FV used by the Fangraphs evaluators.  What I understand it to mean is a reasonably achievable upside (although neither the best possible outcome nor the most likely).  It does not attempt to put a number to the chance of the player achieving it. 

So, let's say that both Biggio and Groshans have a reasonably achievable upside of a good major league player (in Biggio's case as a corner outfielder with power, some speed, pretty good defence and the willingness to take a walk and Groshans as a good-fielding third baseman with power but not likely to draw 60 walks in a year). In WAR terms, that's probably a 3-4 WAR player in both cases.  Personally, I think that's higher than a 45 in both cases.  The real issue is risk or chance of the player achieving it.  There's a scouting element to that, but with a prep pick who obviously has a lot to work on, it is extremely subjective, and given FG's spotty record with players a lot closer to the majors, I am hesitant to give much weight to it as compared with observed performance in the high minors.

Maybe Fangraphs takes into account in some way the remote chance that Groshans develops as Bichette did.  That path is, of course, closed to Biggio because of his age. 
hypobole - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 11:42 AM EDT (#359857) #
"in Biggio's case as a corner outfielder with power, some speed, pretty good defence".

I didn't jump on it the first time, but how is Biggio going to be a pretty good defensive outfielder? I know it's possible, heck it's possible Groshans could become the next Josh Donaldson, but far more likely Groshans won't and Biggio's worse than Teoscar trying to play RF.
Mike Green - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#359860) #
The scouts say that Groshans has the tools to be a third baseman and Biggio the tools to be a left-fielder.  That's all I've got.  It may be that Groshans, if he makes it, is going to be a right-fielder and Biggio a first baseman or DH.  I am describing a reasonably achievable outcome, not what is most likely.  I see that Bleacher Report has a similar view of Biggio and Groshans, so at least I am not alone.

By the way, Hernandez has a reasonable chance of being an above-average defensive leftfielder in the medium-term.  I personally think that the likelihood of that is pretty decent. 
uglyone - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 12:31 PM EDT (#359861) #
I think Groshans' starting point is still as SS, with athleticism and arm, which gives him all sorts of backup defensive options to fall to. (and I'm not convinced that people aren't calling him a 3B already just due to being 6'4"). Biggio, starting off as a 2B (even in High School), probably has less leeway defensively.
uglyone - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 02:07 PM EDT (#359866) #
Just want to say what a pleasure it is to have Grichuk in RF.

It has been a long, long time when we've seen this kind of defense from a corner OF spot.

hypobole - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 02:13 PM EDT (#359869) #
Starting Friday all Lugnut home games on

Thanks, mendocino - great news
Nigel - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 02:30 PM EDT (#359870) #
Interesting discussion all. Hypobole - I have no problem with the possibility that Groshans could be holding his own in Lansing in two years - its definitely possible. However, I think comparing him to most people drafted in the 10-14 spots isn't really logical in this case. He was really a 25-40th overall kind of pick, overdrafted to get a package deal done. I think his most likely path involves me watching him in Vancouver for the 2020 season. As to Biggio, the problem is that his performance this year is so completely and totally out of whack with his prior performance that you have to have significant skepticism about it. 2018 doesn't represent a logical progression for him, its a transformation. Tansformations happen, just not all that often.
hypobole - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 02:36 PM EDT (#359871) #
Nigel, I wrote picks 10-41 not 10-14.

Here's the 1st round last year
Nigel - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 02:39 PM EDT (#359872) #
jerjapan - Wednesday, June 13 2018 @ 08:52 PM EDT (#359894) #
maybe the Jays positional player development group is better than previously?

Dunno Hypo, how is it possible that this would reveal itself in three years, especially given that the new regime is primarily drafting position players, whereas the previous regime was primarily drafting pitchers? 

I continue to reject the idea that the Jays were bad at developing position players - too simplistic in my book.  Although I do remain optimistic that increased emphasis on development is a good thing, and we may see marginal improvements as a result in the next few years. 

And I fully acknowledge that there are a bunch of posters round here who have a better understanding of the nuts and bolts of projecting prospects than I do.  That said, I'm with Nigel on being skeptical of Biggio.  top ten after the first two seasons of his career being mediocre ... what differentiates him from a guy like Noda, who also has had crazy hot streaks, but has never gotten the prospect love?   Biggio is the better prospect obviously, I'm just curious what you guys think?

DiscoStu - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 07:52 AM EDT (#359903) #

I find it interesting that the Jays picked in the draft a number of players who are less than 6 feet.I know a couple were late picks but it suggests to me that they are very open-minded when scouting players.

hypobole - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 09:00 AM EDT (#359907) #
"I continue to reject the idea that the Jays were bad at developing position players - too simplistic in my book."

Maybe you should add Occam's Razor to your book.

You may notice I phrased my comment as a question, because I don't know enough to be definitive. Whereas your answer was definitive, despite the fact you don't know enough either to be definitive.

Mike listed a group of failed position players we've drafted early, but there plenty more. How many everyday position players have we produced since Aaron Hill? Pillar and ....

I remember reading about the Giants drafting Belt in the 5th round. Their PD guys had already planned swing changes for him. Brandon Crawford 4th round . Matt Duffy, who we just saw in Tampa 18th round. Joe Panic late 1st round.

Now plenty of their draft picks have failed as well, just like every other team. And maybe we were drafting players who were bound to fail, or only partially succeed, no matter what PD did. But I would argue what's simplistic is to simply reject a position player PD issue over the years.
uglyone - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 09:24 AM EDT (#359910) #
probably just a random fluke that the jays have been able to draft and develop many pitchers but few hitters. just like it's fluke that the red Sox have done the reverse.
hypobole - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 05:46 PM EDT (#359936) #
In light of this conversation, there was a question in today's FG prospect chat as to whether the possibility of a change to a poor swing is built into their FV projections.

He gave a 3 part answer, with this as #3:

" 3. Project on Diazís swing changing if heís with an org we feel confident knows how to make these changes (40 or 50 depending on org)"

jerjapan - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 06:55 PM EDT (#359939) #
Hypo, Occam's razor could indeed be correct.  If you read my answer as definitive, I've misspoken - I don't claim to 'know' that we did fine developing position players, and there really haven't been success stories since Hill and Pillar.  I just find that idea that we obviously were doing poorly in development floating around on the internet a lot and I don't buy that idea - not your question and clearly nuanced / thoughtful take on the issue.  we did set out to draft a lot more pitchers than hitters until the new FO arrived, and some of our hitters drafted by AA have been riddled with bad injury luck - which could be related to development, undoubtedly, but Occam's razor would likely argue for bad luck.  and there are several Matt Dean's who just never seemed to improve.
I don't know the amount of turnover in the development rank and file - Obviously Shapiro and co brought in their own leadership, but I assume that many of the trainers, coaches and instructors are the same ones working with our burgeoning crop of young position players.  Regardless, I agree with you that we really can't be definitive with the behind the scenes stuff, although I am optimistic that the Jays are being smart prioritizing development.  Now if only we could get these minor league kids more pay so they could avoid fast food and offseason jobs ....
hypobole - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 07:17 PM EDT (#359940) #
There has been a lot of turnover. You were right, it's only been a few years, and maybe Vlad (who probably would have succeeded anywhere), Bo, Smith, Biggio, Young are making the new group seem better than they are.

And as for treatment of minor leaguers one of the FG guys recently said the Jays are OK, a few other teams not bad and the rest are worse.

jerjapan - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 08:57 PM EDT (#359945) #
vlad and bo certainly help!  just to add more grist to the mill, the DSL Jays are raking so far ... Rainer Nunez homered today, giving the team 5 HRs so far, which I believe you noted recently was their TOTAL last year.  we could be putting Hiraldo at the end of your list with Biggio and Young by the end of the season.  It would be hard to have a more successful pro debut than he's having -.391 / .451 / . 696 in 46 ABs.  And at the ripe old age of 17. 

hypobole - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 09:13 PM EDT (#359947) #
jerjapan noticed today the 4 or 5 top hitters on our DSL team are all 17 yr olds. Last year they were 18/19 year olds.
uglyone - Thursday, June 14 2018 @ 11:33 PM EDT (#359953) #
hypo - note that fangraphs kiley blamed the jays for hoffman not performing (For the same bs reason Law shat on sanchez) and yet he didn't see any improvement after being traded.

I.e. imo take that kind of grading with healthy dose of salt.
hypobole - Friday, June 15 2018 @ 02:24 PM EDT (#359977) #
uo - another beauty from you, incorporating ad hominem/strawman devices and misrepresentation.

You're also taking what K McD said out of context, because you didn't seem to actually read his full response on the FG website.

Kiley and KLaw give opinions. Yup, they're wrong sometimes, but anyone who knows anything about baseball knows everybody who gives opinions is wrong sometimes. Even the best people in the best orgs.

What does pitching have to do with batters swing changes? Nothing actually, other than attempting to further your argument.

Kiley "blamed" the Jays? Harsh word, blamed. Here is another more neutral interpretation of what Kiley said

"Kiley McDaniel of Fangrapsh suggests that perhaps Toronto is attempting to lower the risk of re-injury for Hoffman by forcing him to "dial down his curveball" and put less effort in his delivery. Thereís nothing wrong with that, but I donít know if I agree with taking a potential frontline starter in Hoffman and morphing him into a No. 3 or No. 4. Thatís essentially what heís become at this point. Two things could be happening here. Either Toronto is forcing Hoffman to neglect his athleticism and true talent in favor of a safe recovery, or he is just struggling to consistently put away A-ball hitters, as the low strikeout and high hit totals show. I think it is a combination of both the front office erring on the side of caution and Hoffmanís diminished abilities."

The chat response I posted wasn't even Kiley, it was Eric.

For anyone interested here's the link, the question was asked at 2:26 then comes the full response.
John Northey - Friday, June 15 2018 @ 03:34 PM EDT (#359979) #
It is interesting to look at some of the prospects the Jays have lost over the years.  I suspect we'd find for pitchers far more who flopped than succeeded.  Lets check the crazy year - 2015.

  • Kendall Graveman - 5.4 WAR, but negative this year. Over 400+ IP so far. Part of Josh Donaldson trade
  • Matt Boyd,- 3.6 WAR so far, 2.2 this year - this guy I feared would do well as he always had issues when first at a level then aced it in the minors it seemed.  Part of Price trade.

Failed so far:
  • Miguel Castro - 1.5 WAR so far, 1.1 this year.  139 1/3 IP so far.  Sucked for Rockied.   Tulo trade
  • Jairo Labourt - wild as anything, but has reached majors this year and OK in 6 IP in relief.  Part of Price trade.
  • Daniel Norris - 2.6 WAR so far, but slightly negative this year.  253 IP overall, on DL until fall it seems.  Part of Price trade.

Castro and Norris could go in success or fail and Labourt could be in fail but all 3 seem easy to shift at this point.  Really, only Boyd would be desirable at this moment in time.  Hoffman still has potential but doesn't look like a cornerstone or ace anymore.  Really, AA didn't give up much that year in retrospect to get the Jays into the playoffs.  Of course, maybe he could've got more for those guys and I really didn't want Boyd to go but Price was critical at that time.
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