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We're all wondering about prospects as the Jays have made trades, promoted guys, have a lot in the top 100 right now.  So lets look at some history.  Baseball America has been doing Jay top 10 lists for prospects since 1983, top 100's for MLB since 1990 roughly.  So I thought lets do a summary of them.  I thought about others -'s (2012 and up), Baseball Prospectus (2007 and up) but BA's was easiest to find and actually has guys whose careers have ended for sure so more useful for this purpose.

Took a lot more work than I expected - when I was younger this stuff seemed to go quicker.  Probably just I was more foolish and without kids.  Still couldn't find most of the 1998 list (missing 7 of them - couldn't find them online although the rest were easy to find at The Baseball Cube). EDIT: added the rest of 1998 via Sportsnet - thanks mendocino

The most common #1 guy was Vladimir Guerrero Jr. at 3 times, tied with Sil Campusano and Roy Halladay.  2 timers were Tony Fernandez, Aaron Sanchez, Nate Pearson, Travis Snider, Dustin McGowan, Vernon Wells, and Derek Bell.

Most frequent guys on the top 10 : 5 times: Aaron Sanchez, Brandon League, Dustin McGowan, Francisco Del Rosario, and Kevin Witt.  Guess being on these lists a lot isn't a good sign (hanging around in the minors for too long)

Guys who produced ...
So for top 10's out of 383 player seasons - 197 unique players we got 1 HOF'er (so far), 3 near HOF'ers, and 3 more fringe HOF'ers.  So 7 who are near impossible to get unless you develop them normally (Jays traded for McGriff back when the Yankees were run horribly) or 3.5%.  20+ WAR players I put in the 'star' category (again hard to get for less than an arm and a leg, unless you develop them) and there are 19 of those (including the HOF levels) = 6.0%.  10+'s are solid - add 10 more to get it up to 14.7%.  1-9.9 WAR suggests they at least had some value, 46 more there = 75 or 38%.  Under 1 WAR and I'm going 'what was the point' - for the sub 1 WAR guys we get 74 = 37.5%, the 'total waste' are the guys who couldn't even get a September call up - 48 of them = 24.4%.  So 1 in 4 top 10 guys will never get up it seems, while another 37.5% will produce nearly nothing = 61.9% of top 10's who will be forgotten by all but their families and weirdo's like us who obsess on these things.  Some of those - 13 or 6.5% still have a shot - so even if all of them make it then over half of the top 10's fail to do anything of note.

Who of our top 10's was dumped too soon?  IE: was traded and made the Jays regret it (or released like David Wells was).
  • 40+ WAR after leaving: David Wells (he did come back and produce more here 7.8 on his 2nd time here vs 7.3 before his being released but that counts against the Jays on this chart but he annoyed Cito one time too many I think)
  • 30+ WAR elsewhere: John Olerud (curse you Gord Ash!), Fred McGriff (cost of getting Roberto Alomar),
  • 20''s: Jayson Werth (part of a roster crunch in 2004 - traded for Jason Frasor but we had Rios/Wells/Johnson/Catalanotto in the OF and Phelps at DH so forgivable), Chris Carpenter (released due to budget and injury issues, who knew?), Michael Young (0 WAR here, bloody Ash), Shawn Green (pretty much demanded the trade or would've left as a free agent a year later as I recall)
  • 10's: Jimmy Key (free agent), Orlando Hudson (didn't know he did that well elsewhere), Roy Halladay (glad he got that playoff no-no), Noah Syndergaard (sigh), Kelvim Escobar (free agent), and 7 more.
Not as bad as it could've been.  No one reached the level of HOF elsewhere - only Jeff Kent came close but was never on a top 10 list surprisingly - 54.1 WAR elsewhere vs the 1.3 here, but he was the price of getting David Cone in 1992 so we all could live with it.

1983 to 1999
Rank 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
1 Tony Fernandez Tony Fernandez Fred McGriff Sil Campusano Sil Campusano Sil Campusano Derek Bell John Olerud Mark Whiten Derek Bell Carlos Delgado Alex Gonzalez Shawn Green Shannon Stewart Roy Halladay Roy Halladay Roy Halladay
2 John Cerutti Fred McGriff Matt Williams Santiago Garcia Todd Stottlemyre Junior Felix Alex Sanchez Derek Bell Eddie Zosky Alex Gonzalez Alex Gonzalez Carlos Delgado Alex Gonzalez Marty Janzen Chris Carpenter Vernon Wells Billy Koch
3 Augie Schmidt Alexis Infante Santiago Garcia Steve Davis Santiago Garcia David Wells Junior Felix Eddie Zosky Steve Karsay Nigel Wilson Shawn Green Jose Silva Jose Silva Chris Carpenter Shannon Stewart Kevin Witt Felipe Lopez
4 Jeff Reynolds Matt Williams Kelly Gruber Kelly Gruber Matt Stark Francisco Cabrera Luis Sojo Glenallen Hill Mike Timlin Howard Battle Steve Karsay Shawn Green Shannon Stewart Jose Pett Kelvim Escobar Tom Evans Kevin Witt
5 Fred McGriff Stan Clarke Mike Sharperson Mike Sharperson Jeff Musselman Alex Sanchez Mark Whiten Alex Sanchez Ed Sprague Carlos Delgado Jose Pett DJ Boston Sandy Martinez Jose Silva Billy Koch Anthony Sanders Vernon Wells
6 Stan Clarke Augie Schmidt Glenallen Hill Otis Green Rob Ducey Todd Stottlemyre Dennis Jones Nate Cromwell Carlos Delgado Eddie Zosky Howard Battle Paul Spoljaric Chris Carpenter Roy Halladay Kevin Witt Andy Thompson Clayton Andrews
7 Bill Pinkham Jimmy Key Alexis Infante Fred McGriff Glenallen Hill Steve Cummings Steve Cummings Ed Sprague Marcus Moore Pat Hentgen Paul Spoljaric Sandy Martinez Jose Pett Ryan Jones Anthony Sanders Billy Koch Tom Davey
8 Ron Shepherd Dave Shipanoff Jack McKnight Glenallen Hill Nelson Liriano Kevin Batiste Jimmy Rogers Greg O'Halloran William Suero Steve Karsay Aaron Small Adam Meinershagen Edwin Hurtado Tom Evans Joe Young Brent Abernathy Joe Lawrence
9 Matt Williams Otis Green David Wells Norm Tonucci Mike Sharperson Greg Myers Francisco Cabrera Randy Knorr Denis Boucher Ricky Trlicek Brent Bowers Shannon Stewart Chris Stynes Felipe Crespo Ryan Jones Gary Glover Peter Tucci
10 Geno Petralli Matt Stark Kevin Sliwinski Matt Stark Earl Sanders Mark Whiten Denis Boucher Luis Sojo Pat Hentgen Felipe Crespo Rob Butler Lee Daniels Howard Battle Kevin Witt Tom Evans Joe Lawrence Tom Evans

2000 to today
Rank 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
1 Vernon Wells Vernon Wells Josh Phelps Dustin McGowan Alex Rios Brandon League Dustin McGowan Adam Lind Travis Snider Travis Snider Zach Stewart Kyle Drabek Travis D'Arnaud Aaron Sanchez Aaron Sanchez Daniel Norris Anthony Alford Vladimir Guerrero Jr Vladimir Guerrero Jr Vladimir Guerrero Jr Nate Pearson Nate Pearson
2 Felipe Lopez Felipe Lopez Gabe Gross Jayson Werth Dustin McGowan Aaron Hill Ricky Romero Travis Snider Brett Cecil JP Arencibia JP Arencibia Deck McGuire Anthony Gose Roberto Osuna Marcus Stroman Aaron Sanchez Conner Greene Anthony Alford Bo Bichette Bo Bichette Jordan Groshans Austin Martin
3 Cesar Izturis Cesar Izturis Jayson Werth Kevin Cash Guillermo Quiroz Guillermo Quiroz David Purcey Ricky Romero Kevin Ahrens Brett Cecil Chad Jenkins Anthony Gose Jake Marisnick Marcus Stroman DJ Davis Jeff Hoffman Vladimir Guerrero Sean Reid-Foley Anthony Alford Danny Jansen Simeon Woods Richardson Jordan Groshans
4 Michael Young Joe Lawrence Dustin McGowan Francisco Rosario Gabe Gross Francisco Rosario Adam Lind Ryan Patterson JP Arencibia Justin Jackson David Cooper Travis D'Arnaud Daniel Norris DJ Davis Mitch Nay Dalton Pompey Richard Urena Conner Greene Nate Pearson Eric Pardinho Alejandro Kirk Simeon Woods-Richardson
5 Josh Phelps Bob File Orlando Hudson Brandon League Francisco Rosario David Purcey Josh Banks Curtis Thigpen Ricky Romero David Cooper Henderson Alvarez Zach Stewart Justin Nicolino John Stilson Franklin Barreto Franklin Barreto Sean Reid-Foley Richard Urena Lourdes Gurriel Jordan Groshans Alek Manoah Alejandro Kirk
6 Gary Glover Chuck Kegley Eric Hinske Alex Rios Aaron Hill Russ Adams Casey Janssen Francisco Rosario Justin Jackson Kevin Ahrens Jake Marisnick Asher Wojciechowski Aaron Sanchez Daniel Norris Daniel Norris Max Pentecost Jon Harris Rowdy Tellez Eric Pardinho Nate Pearson Orelvis Martinez Orelvis Martinez
7 Brent Abernathy Brian Cardwell Brandon League Russ Adams David Bush Dustin McGowan Brandon League Brandon Magee John Tolisano Brad Mills Josh Roenicke JP Arencibia Noah Syndergaard Matt Smoral Roberto Osuna Roberto Osuna Rowdy Tellez T.J. Zeuch Danny Jansen Kevin Smith Gabriel Moreno Alek Manoah
8 Andy Thompson Pasqual Coco Alex Rios Vinnie Chulk Vince Perkins Zach Jackson Francisco Rosario Jesse Litsch Curtis Thigpen Ricky Romero Brad Mills Carlos Perez Deck McGuire Anthony Alford Alberto Tirado Richard Urena Max Pentecost Bo Bichette Logan Warmoth Sean Reid-Foley Miguel Hiraldo Gabriel Moreno
9 Kevin Witt Jay Gibbons Kevin Cash Gabe Gross Russ Adams Josh Banks Curtis Thigpen David Purcey David Purcey Marc Rzepczynski Justin Jackson Aaron Sanchez Drew Hutchison AJ Jimenez Dawel Lugo Miguel Castro Justin Maese Jon Harris Richard Urena Cavan Biggio Anthony Kay Adam Kloffenstein
10 John Sneed Matt Ford Tyrell Godwin Guillermo Quiroz Brandon League Gustavo Chacin Vince Perkins Balbino Fuenmayor Ryan Patterson Brad Emaus Carlos Perez Jake Marisnick Asher Wojciechowski Tyler Gonzales Sean Nolin Sean Reid-Foley DJ Davis Justin Maese Ryan Borucki Miguel Hiraldo Adam Kloffenstein Miguel Hiraldo

So what about guys in the top 100's? A much shorter list (as you can imagine).
Miscellaneous Top 100 Blue Jay Facts.
Something you can see from that summary is you don't need to drain your system to have a strong run - you don't get stronger than 1983-1993 which ended with 2 WS titles where top quality prospects were traded (like Jeff Kent) to get over the top yet the Jays had tons of talent still coming.  But the 2006-2008 stretch was bad, then 2013-2016, but right now things are on the upswing (top 2 for quantity of top 100's ever in the past 3 years).  Top 10's are very high quality but 2 dud's in Snider & Silva and one 'meh' in Alex Gonzalez (11 WAR lifetime, no All-Star games, no Gold Gloves).
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Parker - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 08:29 AM EST (#394677) #
Nice work, John.

I never would've guessed that Orlando Hudson (30.9 bWAR) had more career WAR than Jayson Werth (29.2). It would've been nice to see Hudson as a Blue Jay during his prime - yet another reason to look back with contempt on the Ricciardi era.
bpoz - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 09:28 AM EST (#394678) #
Since 2012 the farm has done quite well accordingly to these lists. A Sanchez made the list 4 times, Osuna 2 and M Castro 1 time.

In 2012 7 made it to the Majors. 8 if A Wojciechowski made it. Since then we have had a lot of success in that many have reached the Majors. Some good and some mediocre.

Pillar never made the list and neither has Romano. Which is fine. Really glad that we are having some success with Latin players. Vlad, Osuna and M Castro.

The farm is now showing some contribution.

krose - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 09:43 AM EST (#394679) #
Thanks John. Really enjoyed the walk down memory lane. Me thinks the ability to develop and predict success for prospects has increased.
John Northey - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 12:15 PM EST (#394681) #
It probably has - a quick and dirty way to check is did the top WAR guy get ranked highest by BA each year?

Top 5's: 7 players (including duplicates) 5 non duplicates (Vlad & Delgado both twice in top 5). 3 stars (Olerud, Delgado, Wells), 1 good (Gonzalez), 1 to be determined (Vlad)
6-10: 1 dud, 8 picks, 7 unique (Bo twice). Bo & Pearson too soon to know. Snider a 'meh' (4.3 WAR), the dud was Jose Silva in 1994.

So a quick top 10 check suggests it hasn't been terrible. As one dud in the top 10 (Silva) and 1 meh (Snider). Gonzalez was odd as he was a ML regular at 22 but never developed further which is unusual (88 OPS+, beat it only 3 times, at age 26, 29, and 32 over a 13 year career). Snider only had one season as a regular (120+ games - had a 117 OPS+ in RF for Pittsburgh, 1.9 WAR) at age 26 - he'd have 1 more season then retired after 3 more years in the minors (just an 82 OPS+ the next year) assuming he isn't playing somewhere this year at age 33 (891 OPS in 2019 so someone might give him a shot).

I suspect the biggest differences would be lower prospects than the top 10. Jays top 10 in 1983 had 3 guys not make it (#3/4/7) vs 1993 (just #5), vs 2003 (all made it), vs 2013 (4 didn't make it, all 4 are retired now). 4 of that 2013 crew are active and signed (Alford, Norris, Stroman, Sanchez) while 1 is likely to get a deal at some point (Osuna but likely needs Tommy John surgery).
Mike Green - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 12:38 PM EST (#394682) #
It would've been nice to see Hudson as a Blue Jay during his prime - yet another reason to look back with contempt on the Ricciardi era.

Interesting trade that one was: Orlando Hudson and Miguel Batista for Troy Glaus and Sergio Santos after the 2005 season.  Maybe someone here wants to start a series "Hindsight 2021". Here's my initial salvo.  I remember how I saw the deal at the time- Orlando Hudson was my favourite player on the club but I also liked Aaron Hill at the time and didn't feel that Russ Adams was going to make it as a major league shortstop.  Hill had played mostly third base in his debut in 2005.  The club felt that Hill was better suited to play second base (that probably ended up being correct- all hail Brian Buttefield!) and that Adams  would be their shortstop for a few years (nope).  Hence the trade was primarily one about position- bring a big bat over to play third base and slide Hill over to second base.

How did it work out statistically? Let's look at O-Dog, Batista, Glaus (and the players who came back for him when traded) and Hill. Orlando Hudson played for 3 seasons with Arizona and then left after 2008 as a free agent (there was probably some compensation but I don't have a record of that).  Miguel Batista played one season for Arizona in 2006 and left as a free agent.  Troy Glaus played for the Blue Jays in 2006 and 2007 and was then traded for Scott Rolen who played for them in 2008 and in 2009 until the deadline when he was traded for Edwin Encarnacion, Josh Roenicke and Zach Stewart.  Aaron Hill was with the Blue Jays until midway through the 2011 season.  It should be noted that the club was above .500 in 2006-08 and well below it in 2009 so the wins in 2009 might arguably have less value.

Here's the WAR comparison and salary comparison for 2006-2009:

Year Hudson bWAR/salary Batista bWAR/salary Glaus/Rolen bWAR/salary
2006 4.1WAR/2.3M 2.3WAR/4.8M 4.3WAR/10M
2007 4.3WAR/3.9M   3.3WAR/10.5M
2008 2.1WAR/6.3M   3.4WAR/11.6M

If you just look at WAR and $ for 2006-08, the Blue Jays gave up 12.8 WAR which could have been had at a cost of 17.3M for a total of 11 WAR at a cost of 32.1M.  During the same period, Aaron Hill was providing 9.7 WAR at negligible cost.   Scott Rolen  also provided 3.9 WAR during most of 2009 for most of 11.6M and the trade introduced Edwin Encarnacion to Toronto, although he didn't produce that much until after being released and resigned after 2010.

Would the club have been better off during 2006-08 if they had kept Hudson and Hill, and spent the money instead on a DH or maybe another pitcher?  Perhaps, but it likely wouldn't have been enough at least on its own to make a difference. In hindsight, it would have helped a lot if the club had moved on from Vernon Wells earlier and let Alex Rios patrol centerfield when he was at his peak. 

On the other side, the introduction of Edwin Encarnacion to Toronto contributed in a small way to the club's eventual ascent in 2015-16.

In hindsight, I still think that the trade was unwise, but I am much more ambivalent about it than I was at the time.

Nigel - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 01:14 PM EST (#394685) #
Totally agree with that perspective on that deal. The organizational error in all of that was the over valuation of Adams (from draft day onwards) and not really that deal.
John Northey - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 02:04 PM EST (#394686) #
A deal that didn't hurt much or help much - more treaded water I'd say. Hill had to play somewhere, I suspect Hill at 3B and Hudson at 2B would've been a better combination than Glaus/Rolen at 3B and Hill at 2B but who can say for sure? Agreed that the big problem was Adams being a dud. If he succeeded then the infield would've been quite nice. Instead he ended up with 0 WAR lifetime with almost no ML time in 2007/8/9 and only partial time in 2006. Which led to legend of John McDonald to happen (no hit great field, loved by fans) and the bizarre David Eckstein era.
hypobole - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 02:21 PM EST (#394687) #
The O-Dog deal keeps on giving on the D-Backs end. They got 2 picks in 2009 after he signed with LA as a FA, #17 and #35.

#35 Matt Davidson has never amounted to anything, but the #17 pick was A. J, Pollock. Almost 20 bWAR with Zona, and when LA signed Pollock as a FA, it gave the D-Backs pick #34 in the 2019 draft.
Mike Green - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 02:57 PM EST (#394689) #
Thanks, hypobole.  That definitely swings the deal as an overall negative.
85bluejay - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 03:51 PM EST (#394690) #
If O-Dog had stayed with the Jays I doubt that Ricciardi would have made him a QO and received the 2 picks - Ricciardi would have been too afraid Hudson might accept - One of the many things that pissed me off about the Ricciardi tenure was his failure to offer Carlos Delgado a QO and get the 2 picks when there was no way that Delgado who had been treated very poorly by Ricciardi would accept the QO.

Magpie - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 05:14 PM EST (#394691) #
I suspect Hill at 3B and Hudson at 2B would've been a better combination than Glaus/Rolen at 3B and Hill at 2B but who can say for sure?

Geez, I can't see quite see that. At any rate I do think it was the team's needs at the moment that were decisive. They badly needed a Big Scary Bat, certainly more than they needed three second basemen (because I still maintain Adams could well have developed into a solid MLB second basemen if not for the misfortune of being drafted by the Blue Jays.) Troy Glaus was definitely a Big Scary Bat, the Glaus-Rolen-Encarnacion line worked out well, and Hudson gave the Jays roughly the same amount of value he gave the D'Backs but at a fraction of the cost, if you care about that sort of thing.
John Northey - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 06:08 PM EST (#394692) #
Ugh so true 85bluejay - the Jays in the JPR era were super-cheapskates most of the time. Delgado was an obvious issue, and odds are others would've been the same. AA did the opposite - he traded for a guy who was going to be a free agent after the season was over already just to offer arbitration and get the draft pick.
John Northey - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 06:15 PM EST (#394693) #
The one thing to remember about Delgado is the Jays got real value - the Mets not so much. $56 mil for 4.8 WAR, Marlins got 2.8 WAR for $4 mil vs the Jays 36.8 for $86.3 mil. In 2005/6 he was good (5.6 WAR) but then had 2 useless sub 1 WAR seasons and a 1.3. Ugh. Mets were a place for Jay stars to get their retirement money back then (Alomar $16 mil for 2 years 0.4 WAR (they sent cash with him to the White Sox in year 2 where he added 0.1 WAR before going for 1 more season barely holding on with 0.1 again).

Lesson to learn: be very, very careful when signing guys in the 30's. Gulp. Makes me worry about Springer a bit more.
Magpie - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 06:51 PM EST (#394694) #
I went wandering through Da Box mighty archives to see what people who followed the team were saying about Hudson at the time (this was before my time, folks. Ancient, ancient history!) Apparently Hudson was on the trading block as early as 2003, and while everyone loved him to death, everyone understood why. The team had two promising middle infielders coming up fast but neither of them looked capable of playing shortstop in the majors. It was regarded as obvious that Adams would be able to step in at second base by 2005.
Magpie - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 06:53 PM EST (#394695) #
That's no one here thought Adams could play short in the majors. The GM thought differently, with unfortunate results. Especially for Adams.
Magpie - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 07:16 PM EST (#394696) #
The one thing to remember about Delgado is the Jays got real value - the Mets not so much.

Which made me wonder - what did the Mets give up to get him?

Grant Psomas, who never made the show; Mike Jacobs, who had a couple of adequate years as the Marlins first-baseman; and Yusmeiro Petit, who's still around and pitching very well indeed out of the Oakland bullpen.

Delgado gave the Mets one very good season, when he, Beltran, and Wright led them to a division title (not bad when you remember that 40 year old Tom Glavine was their ace and Steve Trachsel was their #2 starter.) He followed that up with one alarming year of decline, and one excellent bounce-back year when he very nearly batted them back into the post-season. Injury ended his career six weeks into the following season. The Mets paid him a lot of money, but they're the Mets. They could afford it. (Besides being in New York, they drew more than 14 million people in those four seasons.)
Magpie - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 07:30 PM EST (#394697) #
[Ricciardi's] failure to offer Carlos Delgado a QO and get the 2 picks when there was no way that Delgado who had been treated very poorly by Ricciardi would accept the QO.

Probably true, but I wonder how much would a QO have had to be in 2005. Delgado was making $19 million here, he did like Toronto, and he ended up signing for $13 million a year (but for four years.) As I recall, the Jays offered him a contract for $13 million - total - over two years.
John Northey - Saturday, February 20 2021 @ 08:38 PM EST (#394698) #
Back in 2005 it wasn't a QO it was arbitration where a maximum pay cut would be 20%, and that was rare. There was a real chance Delgado would've taken it and ended up getting $20 mil when the Jays budget was only $60 mil roughly. The owners pre-Rogers were super-cheap.
BlueJayWay - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 08:53 AM EST (#394703) #
One of the many things that pissed me off about the Ricciardi tenure was his failure to offer Carlos Delgado a QO and get the 2 picks when there was no way that Delgado who had been treated very poorly by Ricciardi would accept the QO.

That was years before the Qualifying Offer system existed.

The owners pre-Rogers were super-cheap.

Rogers owned the team at the time...
Parker - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 09:36 AM EST (#394704) #
Yeah but Rogers got fooled by Ricciardi's pitch about taking everything he learned in Oakland and turning the Jays into a richer version of the A's. Why would you waste money on Carlos Delgado when you can have Lyle Overbay? Bobby Kielty is cheaper AND younger AND better than Shannon Stewart. Why would you want Orlando Hudson when you can have Russ Adams? (he got on base a lot in college!)

What's really odd in retrospect about the Ricciardi era was the acquisition of Shea Hillenbrand - a guy who worked so hard at avoiding walks that his ideal plate outcome was to get hit by a pitch. Maybe Ricciardi figured the result of Moneyball would be that OBP would become overvalued, and going after players who couldn't get on base would become the new Moneyball, or something.
bpoz - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 10:17 AM EST (#394705) #
IMO Richardi's worst move was letting C Carpenter go. Best move bringing Cito back.
scottt - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 10:27 AM EST (#394706) #
Richardi didn't know how to tank.
AA has some better idea about it, but neither got good results from the draft.

I wasn't impressed with the Big Hurt signing.
Or almost any pitcher from those days.

Parker - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 10:39 AM EST (#394707) #
I can't fault Ricciardi for Carpenter - paying him was a high-risk, high-reward move that would've gone against Ricciardi's very public organizational philosophy. At that time in particular he would've been all about shedding budget and acquiring high-floor assets.
tercet - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 02:03 PM EST (#394710) #
Jordan Groshans was on the podcast, says he has gone from 190lbs(in 2019) to 210lbs(now), says he has been prepping to play 3B/LF this year a bit but no official word from the Jays yet.
John Northey - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 04:08 PM EST (#394711) #
Funny - thought it was still Interbrew who owned the Jays back then when Delgado was let go - checks online - crap. I was wrong. Labatts until 1995, Interbrew 1995-2000, Rogers 2000-now. So it was early Rogers who added on JPR (Godfrey's choice it seems). Seemed a good idea at the time.
John Northey - Sunday, February 21 2021 @ 04:15 PM EST (#394712) #
Parker... good point about JPR's methods.

Overbay: 8.9 WAR over 5 seasons here for $26.5 mil, vs Delgado $60 mil for 7.6 WAR - I'd chalk that up as a win for JPR. 2.8 the best Delgado did in any season post-Toronto, Overbay was 3.3 his first year here.

Kielty: -0.2 WAR here, traded for Ted Lilly (1 for 1) who had 6.1 WAR in his 3 years. Stewart spent 4 years in Minny 4.9 WAR (4th in MVP voting his first half season there). Came back for a 'so long farewell' season here. Thanks to the Kielty for Lilly trade it works well.

Hudson going away was a mistake but as seen elsewhere it wasn't horrible thanks to who was gained (Glaus then Rolen).
Callum - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 05:55 PM EST (#394718) #
I half expected to see Jason Arnold on this list circa 2003-2004. For those who don't remember, when J.P. traded Felipe Lopez to the Cincinnati Reds, Jason Arnold was the player sent back. He was hyped to be the Blue Jays' future ace, but fizzled out over the next few seasons. For a much-ballyhooed future superstar, he didn't even crack the top 10.
mendocino - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 06:51 PM EST (#394719) #
dug through my old BA prospect handbooks and
2002 Arnold was Yankees #9
2003 he was Jays #5
2004 #16
2005 gone
mendocino - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 07:16 PM EST (#394720) #
found this article from sportsnet, Baseball America's Jays/Expos top 10 lists from 1983-2000
John Northey - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 07:33 PM EST (#394721) #
Funny mendacino - the Baseball Cube doesn't have Arnold listed. 2003is here, and 2004 is here. Wonder if the list in the books was different from their final list or something. Weird. Arnold never made it to the majors oddly enough - in AA he had a 2.39 ERA 2.69 in A+, 1.50 in A- but in AAA he jumped to 4.79 where his K/9 dropped to 6.1 after being 8.6 and up at lower levels. His BB/9 was 3.5. You can't survive with that mix. In 2005 his ERA skyrocked in AAA to 6.39 (in relief too). Surprised JPR didn't call him up anyways just to try to see if he could help recover that terrible trade. Felipe Lopez 3 years post-trade (2005) was an all-star for Cincinnati. Erubiel Durazo has 2 good years as a DH for Oakland. Elmer Dessens jumped between starting and relieving for years (a meh guy 2.2 WAR over his 8 seasons post trade). Yeah, a 4 team trade. All because JPR had a big desire for Arnold for some reason (he seemed to LOVE Yankee prospects, much like Ash before him). Jays would've been better off with any of the other parts in that trade.
John Northey - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 07:45 PM EST (#394722) #
Thanks Mendocino - I updated the 1998 list in the article to have that data. Nice to have it. Fun to look at the Expos top 10's: seeing Vlad Sr as #1 in '96/'97, #5 in '95.; Randy Johnson in '89 being #2 (#1 being Delino DeShields who was traded in late '93 for Pedro Martinez), Larry Walker #3 in 1990. Lots of decent players, but 2 HOF'ers so close coming up in the system. Sad that they tossed one away in a desperate bid to win one year, then nice that they trade an all-star to get a future HOF'er a few years later. Scary to imagine the Expos of the early 90's with both Johnson & Martinez. Now that would've been a 1-2 punch. Sadly they probably would've just lost Johnson due to the team being unable to figure out how to draw flies to games.
Mike Green - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 07:53 PM EST (#394723) #
Steve Treder did studies of talent produced by the farm systems of the various clubs by Win Shares and wrote a series of articles in the Hardball Times about it.  The Blue Jays system of the 90s was the most productive in the majors.  Moral: a healthy farm system by itself is not enough. 
mendocino - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 09:38 PM EST (#394724) #
the 2004 lists are the same.
1 McGowan
2 Werth
3 Cash
4 Rosario
5 Arnold
6 League
7 Rios
8 Adams
9 John-Ford Griffin
10 Chulk
11 Gross
12 Quiroz
mendocino - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 10:03 PM EST (#394725) #
the books seem to be an updated list. Only other change is 2001, Matt Ford(9), Josh Phelps(10).. Jay Gibbons listed with Baltimore. Book list after rule 5 draft (dec 2000), Arnold acquired dec 2002, JFG acquired dec 2003
John Northey - Monday, February 22 2021 @ 11:23 PM EST (#394726) #
Hmm... I wonder if the website is using the old Baseball America periodical version vs the book version. Sadly tossed all of mine years upon years ago (held them for a long time but they ate up too much space). Wonder if there is an online archive of them out there? I figure there must be.
Paul D - Tuesday, February 23 2021 @ 08:47 PM EST (#394740) #
Zips is pretty kind to Jays prospects relative to the qualitative list at FanGraphs:
John Northey - Tuesday, February 23 2021 @ 10:39 PM EST (#394743) #
Gotta love that ZIPS top 100 - Pearson 9th, Martin 24th, Kirk 26th, Simeon Woods Richardson 32nd, Jordan Groshans 80th, and Orelvis Martinez 99th. 6 in the top 100.

For fun I took the list and did some math (sorry, can't resist math). Using a reverse scale (100 for 1st, 1 for 100th) the best score goes to Tampa by a mile (651, the only one over 400) as they have 11 prospects on the list. Cleveland is clearly in 2nd with 360 points between 8 players, then comes The Jays as part of a group in the 330's (Detroit, Atlanta, Miami, and Toronto). San Diego is close to that group with a 326 score. Everyone else is 279 or less. 5 teams have zero players on the top 100 (Washington, Angels, Mets, Colorado, Cincinnati). Which might explain the Mets going deep into free agency this off-season.

9 teams had 5 or more players. 11 for Tampa, 8 each for Cleveland and Minnesota (poor score due to their best being 30th, just 2 in the top 50, 3 below 75), 6 each for the Jays, Dodgers, and Marlins, while 5 for each of Atlanta, Boston, and Detroit. Pittsburgh only had 2 but they were highly ranked (3rd and 34th) giving them the best average score, the Padres 4 had an average of 82 (just below Pittsburgh) (2, 15,18, and 43) even after all those trades. The Jays average score of 56 tied them for 8th (top 4 would've been 78 so having 2 lower top 100's dragged the average down but I ain't complaining). Houston with just 2 players on the top 100 also had the lowest average of teams with players on it at 16 (70th and 100th). So not much for them on the list and what they have isn't highly ranked.

I'd say the Jays are in good shape no matter how you cut it. Especially when you consider who graduated in the past 2 years (Vlad, Bo, Biggio, Jansen, Tellez). I expect the next few years to be a lot of fun for baseball fans here.
John Northey - Wednesday, February 24 2021 @ 12:09 AM EST (#394744) #
BR added more stats (yay!). For example, Hard Hit % (percent of balls hit hard) in 2020. EV=Exit Velocity

50%+: Vlad at 51.1% (92.5 EV), Hernandez 53.5%, Kirk 50.0% (95 EV)
40's: Bo 40.6%, Gurriel 49.7%, Tellez 47.3%, Grichuk 40.1%
30's: Biggio 30.8% (86.9 EV), Jansen 35.9% (82.8 EV)

For fun I checked a few pitchers. Believe it or not, in just 3 PA (thus why this happened) Trent Thornton 66.7% hard hit % with an Exit Velocity of 88.6. Go figure. Stroman lifetime has an EV of 89.4 and hard hit % of 42.5% (guess it is good he is in the NL now).
scottt - Wednesday, February 24 2021 @ 04:30 PM EST (#394762) #
Did the Mets go deep in free agency?

They lost the following guys to free agency;
Porcello, Justin Wilson, Tropeano, Wilson Ramos, Chasen Shreeve, Erasmo Ramirez, Jake Marisnick, Michael Wacha, Juan Lagares, Edwardo Nunez, Todd Frazier, Cespedes, Robinson Chirinos, Jed Lowrie, Ervin Santana.

They lost Robinson Cano to PEDs.

They traded away Andres Gimenez and Amed Rosario in the package to get Lindor.

Their starting 8 position players figures to include 5 guys they signed Nimmo, McNeil, Conforto, Alonso and Smith.

They signed James McCann to be their catcher banking on one strong month in 2020 in a weak division. They added Villar, Almora Jr and Pillar to contend for their bench. They signed Walker to be their 4th or 5th starter. They signed Trevor May and Aaron Loup to pitch in relief.
That is not being deep in free agency.

Their big offseason move was the Lindor/Carrasco trade.

John Northey - Wednesday, February 24 2021 @ 09:17 PM EST (#394765) #
I suspect I got caught by the hype with the Mets. Much like the Jays, we heard non-stop all winter that they were in on every free agent. Then they got Lindor without using a top 100 prospect (just checked and none of those guys they traded were on that list). Checking ranks and dollars - McCann (who was expensive $40 mil guaranteed, ranked #16 among free agents), Pillar wasn't much ($5 mil unranked), Walker #23 ($20 mil), May #28 ($15.5 mil), Loup ($3 mil unranked). So they locked in $83 mil roughly on guys who I doubt the Jays had any interest in beyond Walker (mild interest there but never seemed to really want him back). Funny that the big guns had no interest in signing there (the Mets did have the cash). I suspect they went as deep as they could, but no one wanted to go there.
bpoz - Thursday, February 25 2021 @ 09:31 AM EST (#394767) #
There is a lot of uncertainty in baseball. Statistical oddities as well.

I just read about the Houston rotation. Verlander probably out due to TJ. What I was very intrigued by was that in March 2015 the Astros signed 3 Int'l amateur pitchers F Valdez, J Urquidy and C Javier. March signings are usually cheap unless Cuban players. All 3 look pretty good in the rotation so far. F Whitley is still around and young and still has some shine on his potential.

This example is cherry picking about my doubts regarding prospect lists.

John Northey - Thursday, February 25 2021 @ 09:59 AM EST (#394768) #
bpoz - thus why I did this study - not as indepth as I hoped (was going to do WAR for all top 10's then check average for each ranking but it got too tedious) but it does help show that generally the experts aren't far off. Not often a high end talent is ranked low or off all together (Jeff Kent the obvious exception). To be honest I forgot David Wells was ever on the lists for example. The pre 2000's lists only had one dud as #1 (Sil Campusano), 2001-2020 has a lot more who had negative WAR lifetime (Stewart, Drabek, Alford [so far]). Funny, always thought Eddie Zoskey was the Jays top prospect at one time (highest he got was #2 behind Mark Whiten).
bpoz - Thursday, February 25 2021 @ 10:19 AM EST (#394769) #
I kept thinking that we ran out of OF prospects after Bell, Barfield and Mosby solidified their hold on the 3 OF spots. I did remember Mitch Webster. Forgot about Glenallen Hill and Mark Whiten. I think they arrived 3-5 years after Hill and Whiten.
John Northey - Thursday, February 25 2021 @ 11:03 AM EST (#394771) #
Jays were overstocked in the OF back then - the big 3 (Moseby/Barfield/Bell), Mitch Webster (great 4th OF, did well in Montreal), Sil Campusano (flop), Rob Ducey (hard luck guy who seemed to get hurt whenever opportunity arose), Geronimo Berroa, Junior Felix (insane start, looked like a future star but was much older than advertised, strange how his final season had his best OPS+ at 129 playing full time in the strike year), Mark Whiten (4 HR game for St Louis), Glennallen Hill (great finishing kick with a 123 OPS+ his final 4 years), Derek Bell (a super-prospect in the day, but ended his career thanks to operation shutdown) all from 1980-1992. All had great potential but obviously a few flopped hard. Shortly after the next wave started with Shawn Green, Shannon Stewart, Vernon Wells, traded for Jose Cruz Jr, etc.

Very surprised Geronimo Berroa never made a top 10 list given he hit 36 HR in 1986 at age 22 in AA (914 OPS) but flopped the next year (8 HR in 131 games in AAA) before being lost in the Rule 5 draft, released, purchased, free agent twice, then finally did what he could in Oakland at age 29-32 (left as a DH/RF he had a 4 year stretch hitting 288/359/485 120 OPS+ 8.2 WAR) but outside that 4 year stretch was pretty poor -0.8 WAR.

Phew. Lots of memories from back then.
Parker - Friday, February 26 2021 @ 09:13 AM EST (#394786) #
Thanks for the link to the Bell article, John. I remember how he fell off a cliff as soon as he signed with Pittsburgh, but I didn't know any of the story behind it.

I had big hopes for him when he came up, but he didn't get much of a chance before he was shipped off for half a year of Darrin Jackson, a player who always called to mind for me an exchange near the start of Major League about the distinction between a player past his prime and a player who never HAD a prime.

Bell sure showed 'em in Houston. Even if you can only brag about being the least valuable member of the Killer B's, you're still doing okay in my book.
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