Feb 26, 2013

S26 Draft in Review

A total of 34 players were selected in the first round of the draft this season. More college players than high school players were taken (19 to 15), but talent appeared to be evenly distributed through both scouts.

While there was a lot of starting pitching talent available, there was a considerable lack of top-end talent you would normally expect to find at the skill positions. Consider no shortstops were selected until the 32nd pick. Two stud catchers went in the top ten, but otherwise few standout position players were taken. This draft lacked a Kris Henley-type of outfielder or a Jack Hague-type of infielder from last season’s draft.

Here’s how the draft unfolded, with owner’s comments included.
1.       Eric Quinn, SP – New Orleans Wolverines

DWB:  Quinn was among the safest selections in the draft, and it’s not hard to see why. The starter has already proven he can go to the mound regularly on just a few days of rest and can pitch deep into ball games. He’s on the cusp of having major league talent, as scouts rated his current stuff among the most developed in the draft. His ceiling is high, but the 22-year-old will need the right coaching and level to get there. If he does, his command and movement on his pitches will make him an effective starter.

scootermcray: Had the number one pick and took Eric Quinn as we desperately needed at least one good starting pitching prospect to start building a future staff around. Debated long and hard about taking the younger Ross Palmer, but had zero in HS scouting so couldn't totally trust the projected ratings I was seeing. Obviously with him going number two, I couldn't have gone wrong either way.

Also gave serious consideration to the already ML-ready slugger Koyie White (#5 overall), but really needed the pitching so Quinn was the safest pick.

White could be a beast so it will be fun to look back in a few seasons at who really was the better pick. Then again, if my ML team doesn't start producing, I may not even be allowed here to see these guys reach the Bigs.

2.       Ross Palmer, SP – Syracuse Nephilim

DWB: The 18-year-old has a lot of raw talent for his age, but will require a lot of coaching to reach that lofty ceiling. Scouts believe the big lefty will have two plus-plus pitches in his arsenal and will throw them hard, keeping them down in the zone. He should be equally tough on lefties or righties, but the question remains how much so. The Nephilim will be sure to manage him carefully under the right tutors.

TXLnghrn: With the second pick in the S26 Griffey draft, the Syracuse Nephilim selected high school lefty starter Ross Palmer. Palmer, a big, strong, hard-throwing control pitcher promises to develop two well-above-average pitches (sinker/forkball) and one average pitch (slider). With the proper development, Syracuse expects him to step into a formidable rotation in or around S30, likely as the #2 starter. While happy with the pick, the Nephilim also seriously considered taking college righty Eric Quinn (#1 overall) or superstar slugger DH/C Koyie White (#6 overall).

3.       Louie Hujimoto, LF – Chicago Fire

DWB: My scouts missed Hujimoto, a speedy Texan with some decent power for an 18-year-old and a bit of an eye at the plate. His questionable make-up will require some disciplined coaching if he’s to develop to Chicago’s expectations, but time is also on their side.

timgod99: Louie Hujimoto was the second-rated player on our board, though he was close to being the top one. In turning our team over in this rebuild we've been trying our best to acquire as many decent prospects as possible, but throughout the process we haven't been able to land a middle of the order bat. Louie fits that perfectly. We hope he'll rise to the majors fast and be a fixture on the North Side for seasons to come.

4.       Juan Bennett, 2B – Arizona Red Hot Chili Peppers

DWB: My scouts also missed Bennett, and as he currently remains unsigned, I have nothing but a mug shot with which to draw conclusions. The diminutive West Virginian is not exactly handsome, but if he can score that $8.5 million from Arizona’s top brass, I’m certain the ladies will look past the beady eyes and mustache.

wylie715: Well, I had 4 first round picks. My first pick is a stud second baseman, but I can't even afford to offer him what he's asking, and even if I could he's dreaming of a pro hockey career, not a baseball career. My other 3 first round picks will probably all make the majors, but none of them will be stars.

5.       Koyie White, DH/C – Cleveland Savages

DWB: The switch-hitting White can pick up a pitch better than most of the current Major League talent. When he puts the lumber in motion, he will hit it a mile. He’ll make souvenirs of many mistakes that come across the plate, provided he can get the bat on it.

impressionah: 1st round selection purely picked for his bat. He could hit in the majors today at age 19. White has great power with very good splits and a keen batting eye. His makeup is worrisome which could hinder him reaching full projections regardless of that you can pencil him in for many future 30-home run seasons.

6.       Henry Aubrey, 2B – Charlotte Tar Heels

DWB: Aubrey is a natural athlete. He does nothing particularly exceptional, but there are few holes in his game. The rangey second baseman should also hit for decent power, motor around the bases with decent speed, and have a decent eye for the strike zone.  You normally want a little more zing out of a sixth overall pick, but Aubrey has all the tools to succeed.  

tk21775: Defensively will be able to handle 2B and provide some speed around the bases, average bat for the position with a little more power than I get out of 2B.

7.       Travis Bittle, SP – San Diego Dragons

DWB: Concerns about his health may have scared some teams away from the starting pitcher, but San Diego could have landed the most talented pitcher in the draft. With proper coaching, Bittle’s sinker should turn into a plus-plus pitch, backed up by a decent slider. Batters will find that Bittle conceals the ball well, and has enough movement on those pitches to frustrate batters from putting any good wood on the ball. The 22-year-old will need the best coaching to hit those lofty expectations, and so should likely start his career well into the farm system. After all, he’ll be pitching for the big league club in two seasons or so.

bobby1978: Travis Bittle is the ace that falls in your lap. Looking at his overall ability he has everything that it takes to turn around a franchise. Landing at #7 the surprise was well worth it. Although most in front of the Dragons drafting may have put more on his very low health rating, if he can stay healthy and can progress like his makeup shows he can, the reward was worth the risk.

8.       Harold Wathan, RF – Honolulu Beach Bums

DWB: The 20-year-old switch hitter has an advanced eye for the strike zone that should only improve, but it’s his ability to drive the ball that left scouts drooling. It’s too bad then that Wathan’s awkward stance at the plate leaves a hitch in his motion – and him struggling to make contact at times. Pitchers will be thankful for this weakness rather than see a constant barrage of frozen ropes off his bat.

gccoach:  He looks like a solid ML corner outfielder or first baseman that should hit 30+ HR a year. He may be the replacement to Ike Cunningham in a couple seasons.

9.       David Romano, C – Pittsburgh Ponies

DWB: Catchers normally come in two varieties: offensive guys who win the game with their bat despite their limitations defensively, or master pitch callers who struggle to make a contribution at the plate. Romano is a bit of a hybrid, and therefore goes in the top ten. The fence power is clear but he’ll be a competent defender as well. A fine pick here.

travisg: If he signs, David Romano should provide elite power and competent defense from the catcher position. His durability and makeup are both above average, but scouts question how much development he has left as a college senior.

10.   Brady Turner, SP – Boston Black Sox

DWB: Brady has demonstrated he has good command and is an effective pitcher against either bat. He’s also blessed with quite a repertoire of pitches. While none of them will be overpowering, he will throw all five very well and keep hitters off-balance. There are questions as to how deep into a ball game he can go as a starter, but I’m certain the Black Sox wouldn’t mind using him in long relief either.


11.   Jimmy Lester, CF – Kansas City Twisters

DWB: Unfortunately my scouts missed Lester and as he remains unsigned, we’ll just have to trust disaacs’ opinion, below. All I’m able to note is that he has Vulcan ears.

disaacs: Unfortunately, we only saw three elite players in this draft, and Lester was not one of them, as he was number four on my list behind Palmer (second overall), White (fifth overall), and Bittle (seventh overall). He'll be alright, but will likely only end up as a backup player at the ML level with some pinch-running ability, if he even makes it there. The likelihood, however, is that he'll end up as solely a AAA-level player, unacceptable for a first-round pick.

12.   Jon Johnson, SP – Toledo Tigerhorns

DWB: There’s a lot to like about this 22-year-old lefty: he can start regularly, pitch fairly deep into a game, throws hard and has a nice “out” pitch. To truly become an effective starter, he’ll need to maximize the short amount of time he has on the mound with some good coaching behind him.

ozzzball19: First round pick Jon Johnson was a senior pitcher out of a small school Eureka College. I was looking for pitching with the first pick and he was the highest I had rated that was still available at number twelve. I would project him as a “middle-of-the-rotation” type starter as he progresses through the minors. He will make his debut with the Low A farm club.

13.   Jake Frazier, 2B – Hartford Honey Jammers

DWB: Should he develop to expectations, Frazier should bring some offense to the infield for the Honey Jammers. He’s blessed with good power and should have a crisp eye for the strike zone. If his glove work fails to develop, his power will find him welcome in the outfield.

Free_Barry: Nice bat who should hit for massive power in my home park. I had him projected as a sure-fire second baseman prior to the draft, but now it appears that he will be a future left fielder.

14.   Tito Hall, SP – Cincinnati Centipedes

DWB: Another starting pitcher comes off the board with the 14th selection, as the Centipedes grab the command-challenged Hall. The good news his four-seamer should blossom into a plus-plus pitch, with enough movement on his pitches to be effective against major-league hitting.

mcgupp: The Cincinnati centipedes were pleased to land two starting pitchers in the first round. Tito Hall is a righty with good splits against both sides of the plate and a great ability to get groundballs. We think he will sign.

15.   Virgil Lima, SP – Oakland Ohlone

DWB: This pitcher reminds me a lot of Jon Johnson, who was selected with pick number twelve. Lima’s decent command, velocity and ability to induce a ground ball will offset his borderline effectiveness. He also has a nice selection of pitches, none of which will bamboozle batters but will get the job done.

Reps: I had him ranked second on my board. I’m happy to get him at number fifteen. He is certainly no stud but he projects to be a decent starter and the fact that he is a lefty with decent durability doesn't hurt. Health and control were plusses and I am always in need of pitching.

16.   Mikey Faulk, 3B – Toronto Valiants

DWB: My scouts missed Faulk, but the 22-year-old looks like he has the profile to become a slugging third baseman should he develop to potential. He already has the prerequisite power needed, and needs just a bit of polish on his ability to tag right-handed pitching. If there’s any weakness in Faulk’s offense, it’s in his inconsistency to make contact at the plate. 

gophilsgo: The Toronto Valiants changed tactics this year, acting aggressively to try and deliver a needed jolt to their farm system. The team struck early in the international market, signing starting pitching prospect Javier Tavarez to a lucrative deal. The move was deemed necessary as starting pitching is notoriously hard to draft and develop, but did take a toll on available funds.

The team carried three draft picks into the first round, but had to wait until the 16th pick to nab their first. GM gophilsgo decided to go for one impact player rather than trying to spread out the available bonus cash for a deep rookie league team. The player was SS Mikey Faulk out of St. Joseph's University. While other scouts project him as eventually moving to 3B or CF, the Valiants are hoping the 6'3 Faulk can stick at shortstop. Faulk is the sort of balanced, polished collegian who does a number of things well, even if he doesn't have that one eye-popping skill. Concerns about his speed persist, but Valiants scouts rave about the way digs in against RHPs and his overall makeup.

The Toronto front office has talked about "fast-tracking" some players this off-season, meaning Faulk's climb to the Rogers Centre may not be as slow and deliberate as that of current Valiants like Tony Kydd and Rabbit Lambert.

17.   Benito Galvez, 2B – Portland Porcupines

DWB: Galvez is a blazing speedster – the fastest player in the draft. But as my scouting missed this player, I can only guess at his ceiling. He will require a fair bit of development if he’s going to be able to drive the ball against right-handed major league pitching. His mechanics are all there however, as he should have a decent eye for the strike zone and will make contact fairly consistently with above average power. It’s a shame his base-running savvy isn’t higher.

bradkoesters: The Porcupines were excited to draft as high as they did, and feel as if they got an impact player if Galvez can develop his defense enought to play second base. With an above average eye, good splits and top notch speed, he looks as if he is a top of the line-up type of guy. He will take a lot of development to reach those levels, but he immediately becomes my top one or two prospect.

18.   Todd Springer, RP – Charlotte Tar Heels

DWB: A nice-looking chap with a fine smile and demanding a reasonable amount of money to sign. That’s all I know of him.

tk21775: Good control, decent splits, won't be anything too special although he looked better on my draft board.

19.   Tony Ortiz, SP – Charleston Chewbaccas

DWB: My scouts missed this guy too. Relying on my limited advanced scouting, Ortiz looks like a nice starting pitcher prospect with slow change-up and a bloop curve. He keeps the ball down in the zone however, and throws with decent velocity.

mlhutch: I see Ortiz as a #3-5 type SP. He will be on the low end of stamina and durability but I still think I can get 160 innings out of him as a starter. He has very nice control, splits, velocity, and g/f ratio. He pitches, however, are going to be a challenge. Overall, it is a solid pick for my spot in the draft.

20.   Dennis Komatsu, SP – Cincinnati Centipedes

DWB: The 19-year-old lefty will naturally be tougher on lefties than righties, but he’ll need to maximize his progress against right-handed hitting to be an effective starter. Fortunately he has a nice curveball and a plus-plus four-seamer going for him. The pitcher throws hard and can induce a lot of ground balls, which should help translate into a successful career.

mcgupp: Komatsu is a lefty with a great hard curve and fastball. Better against lefties, he will still be a great addition to the staff in a few seasons. They will be two strong pieces for the Centipedes to rebuild around.

21.   Dexter Wallace, CF – Scranton Steamers

DWB: The 20-year-old will never win that coveted gold glove in centerfield, but he will cover quite a bit of ground out there tracking down fly balls. At the plate, Wallace has a decent amount of power and a knack for seeing mistakes coming his way. He’s a nice find this late in the round.


22.   Tom Milledge, 1B – Charlotte Tar Heels

DWB: Obviously the Charlotte Tar Heels and the Megalomaniacs scouted vastly different parts of the country. Given Charlotte had three selections in the first 22 picks, I was hoping to learn more about the future of the franchise but two of the three remain unsigned and therefore away from my prying eyes.  

tk21775: Great contact and decent splits, although not quite the power I like out of this position but he'll be a very nice hitter.

23.   Brian Tapani, RP – Buffalo Megalomaniacs

DWB: The second relief pitcher taken, Tapani is adept at throwing three choice pitches and throws effectively against right-handed hitting to boot. The only knock against him will be how often he can make appearances out of the bullpen, as he tires quickly and easily. His makeup is a little questionable as well, making me wonder if he’ll develop to potential. Overall, I think he’ll make an impact in the bullpen.

24.   Daniel Hogan, LF – Las Vegas Lunar Landers

DWB: What’s not to like here? Hogan is a durable athlete who should develop into a guy with a fine eye for the strike zone, good power and be able to handle pitching from either side of the plate. He doesn’t have the power you normally like to find from a corner outfielder, but he’s a nice pick this late.

hallgren: I was happy to get somebody serviceable at 24, I don't love Hogan because he doesn't do any one thing well, but he is a decent piece on a 25 man roster.

25.   Octavio Villarreal, RP – Mexico City REDS

DWB: The high school kid from Oklahoma has some work to do on his command, but for an 18-year-old he’s well on his way to mastering that sinker and slider and should be able to throw them effectively, especially against right-handed batters. The REDS have to be pleased with his ability to keep the ball down as well.

mrx39: Potential major league closer.

26.   Shooter Miller, SP – Hartford Honey Jammers

DWB: The Honey Jammers grab a pitcher late in the first round with the addition of Shooter Miller. The five-pitch starter will need to be well coached to develop to potential, and management is probably concerned with how high his ceiling really is. That said, if he can develop some control to go with how hard he throws and his ability to keep the ball in the yard, he’ll find success at the Major League level.


27.   Willie Izturis, SP – Chicago Toll Roads

DWB: The Toll Roads grab a pitcher much like Miller in terms of his development, but much younger. The 18-year-old requires a fair bit of polish and scouts believe his career will hinge on his ability to conceal his delivery and add some movement to his pitches, especially against right-handed hitting. The south paw throws hard and his four pitch arsenal, while containing nothing special, looks to be of major league quality.


28.   Francis Corbin, 2B – Indianapolis Indians

DWB: Corbin’s fast and has a decent eye at the plate for a high school draft pick. He’ll need to work on that glove extensively if he plans on playing in the infield at the Big League level, but should he be coached up to expectations, Corbin should have a shot at making it to The Show.

rbedwell: Drafting at 28 and with only high school scouting to draw on, Francis Corbin was the best available player for the Indians in this year's draft. Corbin is a good all-around ballplayer, but probably lacks that one or two outstanding skills he would need to be a productive starting player in the A.L. "He should eventually be a valuable bench player, a good depth guy," said Indianapolis G.M. Ralph Bedwell. "Good speed and a good batting eye."

29.   Emmett Leach, SP – Tacoma Mongols

DWB: Leach is a bit of a gem to find so late in the first round. His control and effectiveness against right-handed hitters is fairly well developed, and the 20-year-old is still young enough for the coaching staff to wring a few more years out of him before sending him to the parent club. His change-up, curve and cut fastball will require a bit of work, but he should still be able to get by on his out-pitch.

kthomson: The Tacoma Mongols selected Emmett Leach with the 29th pick. Hailing from New Jersey and playing college ball in New York, he is a tri-state product like the Mongol GM. He is a ground-ball finesse pitcher with great control. His arm isn't overpowering and the Mongol coaching staff is going to try and convince him to simplify things and drop 1 or 2 of his pitches. Considering where we drafted we are very happy to get him and look forward to the day when he takes the mound in Tacoma.

30.   J.A. Smith, RP – Salt Lake City Awesome

DWB: The youngster from San Francisco is a raw talent, and like a lot of other pitchers in this draft has the ability to throw the ball hard and keep it down, inducing a lot of ground balls. Smith will need a lot of coaching to be effective against right-handed hitting, but he has the work ethic to get there. The only real question will be how often he can make appearances out of the bullpen. It won’t be every night. Still, he’s a nice pick late.

31.   Don Browne, SP – Cheyenne Duck Snorts

DWB: The young lefty will keep the coaching staff busy with his command issues, and more than often leaving the ball belt-high over the plate. Scouts were excited about his blazing fastball however, and his five-pitch repertoire gives him a decent pitch selection from which to choose. Browne has more than a shot making the Big League club, which is all you can ask of such a late pick.

bajoraa: The selection of compact left-hander Don Browne sparked mixed reactions in the Duck Snort draft room. Proponents saw Browne as a potential workhorse who could be slotted SP2/3 and provide 250 reliable innings per year -- the kind of player not typically available at Cheyenne's late first round draft slot. Detractors cited Browne's raw control as a risk that might result in Browne fizzling out before ever getting the call to the big leagues. The rookie league pitching coach asked for someone to pass the scotch.

32.   Kirt Acoste, SS – Arizona Red Hot Chili Peppers

DWB: As hard as Acoste works, it’s unlikely the coaching staff in Arizona will be able to infuse enough magic into his glove to turn the high school prospect into a major league defensive shortstop, and he lacks the power you would like to see from the hot corner. It’s too bad, as he could have found a niche playing against left-handed pitching and spelling a starter.


33.   Quilvio Ortiz, SP – Buffalo Megalomaniacs

DWB: If the 19-year-old pitcher can turn his sinker into a plus-plus pitch, the rest of his assets – his command, velocity and ability to keep the ball in the yard, could find him a home at the Major League level as a long reliever.  

34.   Max Duran, SS – Portland Porcupines

DWB: For a high school player, Max is a special defensive player. He has the raw talent and years ahead of him to work himself into a starting gig, or even come off the bench against south paws. The Porcupines have to be pleased to find this kind of talent late.

bradkoesters: I was pretty happy to get a player like Duran with the last pick in the first round. He is a long way from his projections but I don't see an issue with him developing into an above average shortstop. He is already close to the range needed as well as arm strength. If we can get to above average defensively, although he will struggle with righties his high batting eye will make him a valuable eight-hole hitter. Combine that with good speed and a potential durability rating of 95, he should become a stalwart for years to come.

Some commentary for debate and fun:

1.       Best top ten pick in the draft? It’s hard to argue with any of those selections: Quinn and Palmer going at #1 and #2 respectively really can’t be debated. White going at #5 had to be a nice surprise for Cleveland. From my perspective, it comes down to a split decision – Bittle going at #7 to the Dragons and Romano going at #9 to the Pirates. Bittle’s health concerns may have scared a few teams away, but if he develops to expectations without an injury, San Diego’s risk reaps a huge reward. You also have to love Romano’s combination of offense and defense – I really think fans in Pittsburgh awoke that morning with a smile when they realized they landed this kind of talent.

2.       Disappointing pick in the top ten? Has to be Arizona’s failure to sign Bennett at #4. Given the lack of cash in the bank, they took a risk by selecting a player with such lofty demands and the gamble in this case did not pay off and they won’t get a type D either.

3.       Best mid-round selection, pick 11 through 24? Many honorable mentions here, as this was a tough draft and the talent thinned rapidly through this round. I liked the selections of Hogan at #24, Johnson at #12 and Hall at #14, but my vote ends up falling to Lima at #15.

4.       Best late-round selection, pick 25-34? The one that most stands out to me is the selection of Shooter Miller at #26 by the Honey Jammers, who had to be happy he fell through the cracks.

Feb 12, 2013

Clocking In

The last few weeks have seen a few talented young rookies make their debuts in the Big League. These late spring call-ups are always significant because they are normally impact players left to marinate in the minors at the start of the season in order to delay their service clock and squeeze one more precious year of service from them.

The following are the top ten rookies destined to have an impact on their ball clubs. At least one team is staking a major claim to the future of their already highly-contested division.

10. Wilfredo Mota, SP, Salt Lake City Awesome
The 23-year-old southpaw from the Dominican Republic has decent command and will be able to start on a few days of rest. His fastball is not especially problematic but he’s blessed with a decent slider setting that pitch up. As is typical of most lefties, he’s harder on left-handed bats but righties will be able to drive the ball with some success against him, and his fastball lacks some zip to blow away major league hitting.

9. Mendy Whang, RP, Tacoma Mongols
The lefty’s greatest attribute is that he can make repeated appearances out of the bullpen when needed and will reduce the burden on the rest of the staff. Whang has decent control but is limited to two pitches, both of which are serviceable but won’t exactly strike fear into his opponents. There is just enough movement on his pitches to prevent batters from teeing off on one, but he will surrender his fair share of hits.

8. Skeeter Cooke, RP, Tacoma Mongols
Cooke likewise will be a workhorse for Tacoma, able to put in a lot of innings on a short amount of rest.  Blessed only with two pitches, Cooke’s change-up is bat-freezing and he’ll lock up a lot of hitters with this plus-plus pitch. His curveball is just decent enough to keep batters honest and fishing. The combination keeps batters off-balance, especially right-handers. It’s too bad he doesn’t throw just a little harder or lower in the strike zone or he could be special.

7. Phillip Burke, SS, Indianapolis Indians
Burke won’t be getting to every ball hit his way if he ends up playing shortstop everyday, but he has a decent enough bat to make up for his lack of range in the field. There’s nothing special about the way Burke gets his work done: he makes average contact and will struggle at times to put good wood on a right-hander. He’s quick, but gets an average jump on the pitcher so he won’t steal a ton. He’s a better fit at second base, and time will tell where he finds his home.

6. Edgar Reyes, CF, Charleston Chewbaccas
Reyes is that rare blend of defensive-minded centerfielders with pop in his bat. Blessed with elite range and a potential gold glove to go with it, Reyes will also turn pitchers’ heads with his hitting. He has above average power, likely since he tends to pull the ball, and makes fairly consistent contact at the plate. Too bad he struggles with the strike zone, rarely finding a pitching he won’t chase with his bat. The latest Wookie is a nice piece to re-build around.

5. Yunesky Polanco, 2B, Cheyenne Duck Snorts
The third player on this list from the Dominican Republic, Polanco is blessed with elite power and a good eye which should send a lot of mistake pitches into the seats of Conte Yard. His lumbering upper-cut of a swing leaves him vulnerable to the strike-out, and at times he’ll often send a ball for a skyward pop-up or awkward grounder when he fails to put good wood on the pitch. Defensively he’s rangey and those big biceps will come in handy for turning two.

4. Luis Montero, SP, Indianapolis Indians
The first of a trio of pitchers breaking in the mound for the Indians, Montero is the least refined of the group but has the furthest still to go in his development. The right-hander is all of 21. He’ll need to continue to develop his command, and his set-up pitch won’t be fooling many batters, but his fastball is major-league ready as is the rest of his off-speed stuff. He’ll be an effective starter in the rotation, and become even more so with exposure to major league coaching.

3. Gregg Denny, SP, Indianapolis Indians
The Oklahoma-native from Broken Arrow won’t be tossing many complete games, but he will put the Indians in position to win with a quality start on a regular basis. Denny is a hard-throwing righty. His fastball and change-up will be enough to challenge opposing batters, and he’ll locate the pitches well enough to keep the ball in the park.

2. Nick Munoz, 3B, Pittsburgh Ponies
Cut in the classic, old-school mold, Munoz profiles to bring a slugger’s mentality to the hot corner. His above average power, coupled with the ability to drive the ball cleanly against right-handed pitching, should elevate his slugging percentage in PNC Park. He’ll turn the occasional single into a double with his baserunning sense and blazing speed. His defense is not too shabby, either, as Pittsburgh will get all this offense with no drop-off in fielding.

1. Carlos Lugo, SP, Indianapolis Indians
With the addition of Carlos Lugo, consider for a second that 26-year-old Pedro Rivera becomes the veteran of the five-man rotation. The Indians add their third and perhaps best piece to the rotation with the recent call-up of Carlos Lugo. The 22-year-old keeps the ball down in the zone, inducing a lot of grounders. His Slider and curveball are not overpowering pitches, but major league worthy, and he’ll throw them hard. As a result, batters will struggle to put decent wood on the ball against him, keeping the ball in the park and often in front of the defense.

Oct 7, 2011

Possible Rule Change

Our rules have been updated (but not changed) under the Private World Rules tab, but I am inclined to add a new one. We haven't voted anyone out yet for posting 200 losses, despite having a referendum every season since the rule went into effect. That actually doesn't bother me too much, because I think that reflects our relaxed, friendly attitude here.

But I am strongly inclined to automatically boot owners if they reach 200 losses over two consecutive two-season periods. (Does that make sense? What I mean is, you post 200 losses over, say, seasons 1 and 2, and then 200 losses over seasons 2 and 3. I guess it could more easily be expressed as losing 300 games over three seasons.)

I've heard from some of you during our referendums (referenda?) who say that it takes time to turn around a bad franchise, and I can understand that. But having rebuilt several teams across several leagues, I don't believe that it's necessary to lose 100 games or more over consecutive seasons to rebuild a franchise. I don't want to be a hardass here, but I feel like we need the no-questions rule for the third season so our relaxed, friendly attitude isn't abused. I'll wait to change anything until budget day is over (at least) to gauge reactions, but that seems like a reasonable rule to encourage competition. More than reasonable, actually.

Jul 1, 2010

Know All Men By These Presents

We the Owners, in order to form a more perfect Griffey World, have hearby adopted through a democratic vote these Rules and Regulations by which to Govern ourselves.

We shall each be subject to a referendum should our franchise lose 200 or more games in any consecutive, two-season period. Thus, should you lose 100 games in a season and 100 the next, the other owners will be asked to decide whether you shall retain your team for a third season. The same rule applies if you should lose 110 in one season and 90 the next, or 115 and 85, etc. The referendum shall be conducted during the playoffs of the season in which the 200th loss is attained.

We shall each be subject to a referendum if our minors are consistently or purposefully neglected. The commissioner shall be the ultimate arbiter of this standard, but the determination shall be based upon persistent complaints from other owners if minor league pitchers are exhausted or if players are played grievously out of position (e.g., C playing SS) or if minor league games cannot be simulated because rosters aren't complete.

I'm not quite comfortable with formalizing a rule based on 1/3 support for a prohibition against cash in trades exceeding the salaries of included players. Basically, we have one more vote than it would take to earn a veto. I think some further discussion is needed on that one, so this portion will be updated. Scratch that, amended.

We should also determine whether to allow someone who's been voted out to return after a one-season hiatus, but I suspect that won't really be an issue here. But a rule would be good. If you have any other questions or concerns, or want a rule clarified further, please let me know.

Jun 23, 2010

Binding Vote: Minimum Standards

Please vote for the minimum standards you'd like to see enforced or suggest amendments in the comments below. We got a pretty clear picture of what the owners last season wanted to see, but those results were not binding and we've got a couple of new owners now. In the event of a tie, I will cast the tiebreaking vote.

Addendum: These are simple majority votes.

Apr 19, 2010

Vote: Minimum Standards

I've set up a poll to gauge interest in establishing some minimum standards of competition, and to see which ideas discussed so far are most popular. The results of this particular poll will not be binding, and you may vote for each choice that matches your current position. If none of the choices appeal to you please let me know either in a blog comment or a trade chat.

I really want everyone to feel like they've had a say in this, since some of us have been competing in Griffey world for nearly four actual years, and many others for nearly as long. That's really something, and I don't want to wreck a good thing. Any rule changes are intended to proactively deal with problems we may encounter down the road and to improve competition going forward. In other words, I hope to strengthen an already great world.

Please vote by Sunday, April 25, and keep your suggestions coming!

Apr 11, 2010

Discussion: League Rules

We've always operated without stated rules, which has worked for us thus far, but after WiS revised its policy regarding private worlds and removing problem owners, it might not be a bad idea to determine our expectations for fair play. I don't really want to change anything, unless there's a real groundswell from you guys to do so, but I'd like to have something to put into writing in the event that a problem owner joins and refuses to leave. Hopefully we'll never need these rules!

Add your ideas to the comments below.