Prospect Watch: Big Nights From Meadows, McGuire and Jones


A look at how the current top 30 prospects did today.  Note that this list doesn’t include players currently in the majors. If a player is in the majors, he will be removed, everyone below him will be shifted up a spot, and a new player will be added to the bottom of the list. If a player is out for the season, he will be removed and everyone below him will move up a spot. Removing these guys doesn’t mean they have lost prospect status. It is just an attempt to get 30 active prospects on the list. Rankings are from early season update, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Altoona – DNP

2. Jameson Taillon, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

3. Austin Meadows, CF, Bradenton – 3-for-5, 2 R, RBI, 3B

4. Josh Bell, 1B, Altoona – DNP

5. Reese McGuire, C, Bradenton – 3-for-4, R, RBI, BB, 2 SB

6. Nick Kingham, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

7. Alen Hanson, 2B, Indianapolis – DNP

8. Cole Tucker, SS, West Virginia – 0-for-2, RBI

9. Elias Diaz, C, Indianapolis – DNP

10. Mitch Keller, RHP, Bristol – DNP

11. Harold Ramirez, OF, Bradenton – Pan-Am Tournament

12. Stephen Tarpley, LHP, West Virginia – DNP

13. JaCoby Jones, SS, Bradenton – 3-for-5, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI

14. Adrian Sampson, RHP, Indianapolis -DNP

15. Trey Supak, RHP, Bristol – DNP

16. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Bristol – DNP

17. Barrett Barnes, OF, Bradenton – 0-for-2, 3 BB, 2 R, SB

18. Clay Holmes, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

19. Cody Dickson, LHP, Bradenton – 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 HR

20. Willy Garcia, OF, Indianapolis – DNP

21. John Holdzkom, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

22. Jordan Luplow, 3B, West Virginia – 2-for-5, 2B, HR, RBI, BB

23. Connor Joe, 1B, West Virginia – 0-for-3

24. Wyatt Mathisen, 3B, Bradenton – DNP

25. Casey Sadler, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

26. Steven Brault, LHP, Altoona  – DNP

27. Tito Polo, OF, West Virginia – Pan-Am Tournament

28. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

29Luis Heredia, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

30. Taylor Gushue, C, West Virginia – 0-for-3, R


Top Pitcher: Yeudy Garcia, RHP – 5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: JaCoby Jones, SS – 3-for-5, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI

Home Runs: JaCoby Jones (10), Jordan Luplow (6), Huascar Fuentes (4), Elvis Escobar (3), Yondry Contreras (2)


Indianapolis has off until Thursday due to the International League All-Star game.



Altoona is on their All-Star break.



Box Score

Result: Bradenton 11, Lakeland 2

Starting Pitcher: Cody Dickson, LHP – 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: JaCoby Jones, SS – 3-for-5, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI

Other Notable Performers:

Austin Meadows, CF – 3-for-5, 3B, RBI

Erich Weiss, 2B – 3-for-5, 2 R, 2 RBI

Reese McGuire, C – 3-for-4, RBI, BB, 2 SB

Game Notes:  Cody Dickson had a strong night on the mound, doing a good job of getting ahead of hitters and putting them away with his curveball. A lot of the times when he’s been off this year, it hasn’t been due to opponents hitting his stuff. Instead, it has been due to his command being off, missing way up and outside. There are even times when he struggles with command but puts up a good stat line. That wasn’t the case tonight, as his command was on point.

This was the first time that Dickson has pitched since July 5th. Bradenton manager Michael Ryan said after the game that this was an attempt to give him a break and limit his innings. After tonight’s outing, Dickson has 92.2 innings on the season. He threw 129 innings last year in West Virginia. The Pirates usually don’t get guys up to the 150 inning mark until Double-A. They will most likely be taking a similar approach to skip a start with their other starters, especially with Clay Holmes joining the rotation recently, and giving them six starting options.

The offense was on fire tonight, with a ton of hard hit balls all throughout the lineup. JaCoby Jones showed off some pull power, with a homer and a double to left field, along with a double to the right-center gap. He struggled in June, but seems to be rebounding well in July, with all three of his hits tonight being well struck. Reese McGuire worked the middle of the field tonight. He only had singles, but all three of his hits were hit hard, just right to fielders. He also stole two bases, showing off good speed for a catcher.

Austin Meadows has been on fire lately, ever since he was given a lengthy break last month around the All-Star break. That continued tonight as he showed off his power potential, including hitting a triple to the right-center gap that rolled to the wall. Meadows shows a lot of raw power, and eventually a lot of his extra base hits are going to turn into home runs as he fills out and matures.

Erich Weiss has been impressive this year, and is another guy who seemingly hits the ball hard every time he gets a hit. He had three singles tonight, but a lot of hard hit balls, while doing a good job of hitting to all fields. – Tim Williams



Game One Box Score

Result: Hagerstown 3, West Virginia 2

Starting Pitcher: Alex McRae, RHP – 4.1 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Pablo Reyes, 2B – 1-for-3, RBI

Other Notable Performers:

Michael Suchy, RF – 1-for-2, BB

Cole Tucker, SS – 0-for-2, RBI

Game Notes:  In game one of a doubleheader, West Virginia’s offense got shut down and the starting pitching got them down early. The Power had just three hits in the game and both runs they scored were unearned. Pablo Reyes and Cole Tucker drove in the only runs, while Jordan Luplow’s 21st double was the only extra-base hit. Luplow also committed his 13th error at third base. Elvis Escobar was thrown out stealing for the 17th time in just 24 attempts. This wasn’t a good outing for Alex McRae, who saw his ERA go up to 4.11 after giving up three runs in 4.1 innings. He allowed seven hits and a walk, plus he hit two batters. John Sever pitched two innings and retired all six batters he faced.

Game Two Box Score

Result: West Virginia 5, Hagerstown 0

Starting Pitcher: Yeudy Garcia, RHP – 5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Elvis Escobar, CF – 1-for-3, HR, 3 RBI

Other Notable Performers:

Jordan Luplow, 3B – 1-for-2, HR, RBI, BB

Michael Suchy, DH – 1-for-3, 2B

Game Notes: The Power got all the runs they needed in the third inning off one swing of the bat from Elvis Escobar, who hit a three-run homer as part of a five-run inning, to salvage a split in Wednesday’s doubleheader. Jordan Luplow added a solo homer and Yeudy Garcia lowered his ERA to 2.16 through 75 innings, by throwing five shutout frames in this game. Garcia and two relievers held Hagerstown to three hits, all coming off the bat of Bryan Mejia. His teammates went 0-for-20 in the game and Mejia was thrown out stealing for the other out.

Luplow hit his sixth homer of the season, giving him 29 extra-base hits on the year. The homer by Escobar was his third of the season and Michael Suchy added his 18th double.



Box Score

Result: State College 10, West Virginia 7

Starting Pitcher: JT Brubaker, RHP – 3.2 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Logan Hill, RF – 3-for-5, 3 RBI

Other Notable Performers:

Kevin Newman, SS – 1-for-4, BB, 2 R

Daniel Arribas, C – 2-for-5, R

Game Notes:  The West Virginia Black Bears fell to the State College Spikes Wednesday night by a score of 10-7, despite the Spikes’ sloppy defense. With the loss, the Bears drop to 10-14 on the season. Though the box score will look good for the home-standing Bears (ten hits), they had multiple bunt singles, infield singles and a pop fly that dropped in short right field without the Spike second baseman even laying a glove on the ball. The Spikes also committed three errors and had multiple wild pitches and passed balls which were large contributors to the Bears’ seven runs.

JT Brubaker, recently drafted in the 6th round out of Akron, pitched well for the first three innings.  His fastball was clocking between 92-94 mph and his curve ball was especially effective.  However, he ran into trouble in the fourth and never got out of the inning.  With two outs and a runner on, Brubaker gave up a walk and three singles, before the final nail in the coffin; a bases-clearing three run triple.  When the dust had settled, State College had put five on the board to take a 5-4 lead.  Brubaker was hit hard in the inning with all five runs being earned.

The Bears had taken a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the third despite only hitting one ball out of the infield; a check-swing flair over the first baseman’s head.

Brubaker was relieved by Jerry Mulderig, who was effective.  He got out of the fourth and pitched a scoreless fifth. However, Juan Paula was brought in to pitch the sixth and gave up three earned runs in his one inning of work. Paula took the loss.

One positive for the Bears was the play of Daniel Arribas, who has been catching more as the season has gone along. On defense, he threw a strike to second to nail a runner attempting to steal.  He also made a very good play with a runner on third and two out.  The batter attempted to push a bunt down the third base line.  Arribas came out of the catcher’s box quickly, grabbed the ball, and dove for the runner who was attempting to score from third, as he had no play at first.  He was able to get his glove on the runner for the final out of the inning.  He also hit three line drives in his five at-bats, finishing 2-for-5. He has been earning the additional playing time with his bat and solid play behind the dish.

First round pick, Kevin Newman, had a line drive single, but also struck out in the 8th with the tying run on second.  He finished 1-for-4 with a walk. He was solid in the field and made an excellent play early in the game when he dove in the hole and speared a hard shot to save a run.

Second round pick, Kevin Kramer, who started at second base, was strong defensively as well.  He started a 4-6-3 double play by ranging far to his left and making a strong throw to second. He finished 1-for-3 at the plate.

Logan Hill continues to have good at-bats.  He is the best hitter on the team at this point. He had three RBI for the night.

Right-hander, Nick Hibbing, who entered the game with a 0.00 ERA was touched up for two runs in the 9th inning. He gave up two doubles and a single.

Despite their ten hits, the Bears failed to record an extra-base hit.  They played well defensively, but the pitching just wasn’t there. – Jamey Conlin



Bristol was rained out on Wednesday. They will play a doubleheader on Thursday.



Box Score

Result: Yankees2 10, Pirates 2

Starting Pitcher: Luis Escobar, RHP – 4.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Raul Siri, 2B – 2-for-3, 2B, BB, R

Other Notable Performers:

Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B – 2-for-3, BB, R

Edison Lantigua, LF – 1-for-4, 2 RBI

Jhoan Herrera, 1B – 2-for-4

Game Notes: Luis Escobar has been great after a tough opener to his season. The 19-year-old righty only went four innings in this game, though that was partially due to a delay caused by lightning. In his last four starts combined, he has allowed two earned runs on seven hit in 18.2 innings. He has a 5:17 BB/SO ratio this year in 19.1 innings and his only weakness seems to be that he is getting more fly balls than grounders. On this team with all their outfield speed, that isn’t bad, but they also have a very strong left side of the infield on defense that he could take advantage of by keeping the ball on the ground. Escobar did have a 5:3 GO/AO ratio in this game, which is what you like to see, so this could be a step in the right direction.

This game got ugly after Escobar left, with two relievers giving up four earned runs each. The Pirates had to call on backup catcher Garrett Russini to pitch for the second time in a week. The 3-5 hitters in the lineup, Ke’Bryan Hayes, Raul Siri and Jhoan Herrera, each had two hits. Hayes now has a .404/.485/.509 slash line in his first 15 pro games. Edison Lantigua has had a tough time since his return from an injury that occurred during the end of Extended Spring Training. He has a .174/.174/.174 line in 23 plate appearances over seven games. He drove in two runs in this game. Adrian Valerio committed two errors in this game and had one in the last game. While he obviously has all the tools to be a Gold Glove caliber shortstop, at 18 years old, he still needs to find the consistency in the field to reach his huge upside.



Box Score

Result: Mets2 8, Pirates 5

Starting Pitcher: Argenis Romano, RHP – 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter:  Yondry Contreras, CF – 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI

Other Notable Performers:

Jeremias Portorreal, RF – 1-for-4

Melvin Jimenez, 2B – 2-for-4

Game Notes: The Pirates got strong starting pitching from Argenis Romano in a spot start, but Adonis Pichardo followed him and got lit up in his only inning. Romano was signed late in Spring Training after a tryout and he is already 20 years old, so while it’s good to see him succeed, you would rather have seen Pichardo follow him with a strong outing. He is the higher upside prospect, with a fastball that touches mid-90’s. That potential got him a six-figure deal last July. In his only inning of work, Pichardo allowed five runs on five hits and a walk.

Yondry Contreras hit his second homer of the season. He has two hits in each of his last three games. Right before this current mini-streak, he was in a 2-for-28 slump. Jeremias Portorreal had a single to extend his on-base streak to 17 games. He also picked up an outfield assist. Huascar Fuentes hit his fourth homer of the season. Mikell Granberry is 3-for-28 in his last ten games.

  • Jamey,
    Excellent write up. I was at the game last night and you captured the game well. A few points of note from my perspective:
    1. I was underwhelmed by Newman. His defense aside, his physical abilities – speed, strength, reactions, instincts, all seemed average at best to me. For a college player, I expected more. He almost missed a hard grounder right to him, little birthday gift type – slow to react on a ball past the catcher moving to third and I’m not sure with his frame how much you can expect him to fill out. Meh.
    2. Logan Hill – He looks the part more than most on the team and he appears to have room to fill in too. His Defense however was average with a poor throw to home from right twice and average range in the field. Best bat though.
    3. Mitchell Tolman is a sparkplug and has some really nice defense at third – nice and accurate arm too. Unfortunately his bat is weak, at one point he must have fouled off 5 pitches in a row – late every time on 86 mph stuff. I just didn’t see it.
    4. The pitching was atrocious. Brubaker’s stuff was the best of the four guys but even that was pretty bad. He was tatooed. Good thing we have some fresh blood coming in from UVA.
    5. Favorite thing of the night and I know it’s not player related – but at one mid-inning break there was a dance battle between G-Money and the opposing St. College Coach. All I can say is Travolta had nothing on the coach, he went all out including finishing a break dance into a split! Unreal… lol. Great fun.

    • Logan Hill does, currently, look like the best bat. He and Ty Moore. The only player who has been worse/more disappointing than Newman is Hughston. Newman, supposedly a great college bat, has been a huge disappointment thus far. Maybe this first year will/should be written off…but at the level he’s at he should be performing much better than he is and the results thus far are very underwhelming.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    July 16, 2015 9:24 am

    Erich Weiss is a guy that seems to fly under the radar, as he is on a team with so many higher profile prospects, like Meadows, McGuire. Ramirez, Jones, etc.But, he has been very consistent all season – as his average has been in the .290 to .310 range pretty much all year, with no deep slumps that I can recall. Although he has good size, he hasn’t hit for much power yet – but the FSL is not a hitters league and certainly not a power hitters league.

    How has he looked in the field at 3B? What is his range and arm like?

    • He plays second base.

      • BuccosFanStuckinMD
        July 16, 2015 2:36 pm

        My bad…although didn’t he play 3B in the lower levels?

        • He was drafted as a 3B, but moved to 2B prior to his first full season.

          • BuccosFanStuckinMD
            July 16, 2015 5:04 pm

            We seem to have an abundance of second base prospects – Hanson, Moroff, Frazier, Weiss – and hardly a single legit third base prospect – other than Hayes who is 4-5 years away.. With that in mind, I assume Weiss was moved to second base for one of two reasons – he didn’t have the arm for 3B or he did not project to hit well enough, especially for power, to be ideal at 3B?

            I guess Mathisen has his moments at 3B, but he is largely a singles hitter. How’s his glove? Luplow has some extra base power, but 3B is a new position for him and apparently it shows. His average is also in .230-240 range – not good in Low A. Joe is now at first base, although I am not sure why…he doesn’t project to hit for enough power to be a first baseman.

            • Weiss moved off third right when Mathisen moved to third.

            • From an org standpoint, they could see 3B as something not pressing in the next 3-4 years. Harrison around with Kang, so options. Not that i love the current depth, but 3-4-5 years to find/move someone into that spot seems doable. One of the middle IFers drafted in 3-4 years could easily be able to slot into 3B even though they arent “3Bmen” right now.

  • Not sure I buy the “wait til he fills out” logic with Meadows. Kid is already quite physically developed and you pretty much blow any chance of him sticking in center by bulking him up more. Just like with Josh Bell, it’s about the swing. Meadows has a line drive stroke that simply isn’t going to translate to over-the-fence power without adding a bit of loft. Less pressure on his bat than Bell’s, though, so I’m just fine with the hitter Meadows is right now.

    • A hitter with the ability of Meadows should have a much better than sub-.800 OPS. He hits for average, draws a good number of walks, doesn’t strike out that much, and is built for slugging. Yet, like almost all of our prospects, he isn’t hitting for power. Three homers? Three triples…and 16 doubles? If Meadow’s slugging percentage was aligned with his talent and ability, he’d be hitting to a tune of .300/.365/.865. His slugging percentage was higher the last two years, although 2013 hardly counts. He isn’t putting the ball in the air as much and that is troubling. How is it possible we take good hitters with power potential and turn them into singles hitters?

      • Preaching to the choir, my friend…

        • Interesting that they haven’t converted Jacoby Jones to a powerless singled hitter yet…after all we do need to cut down on the strike outs!

      • No one in the entire FSL has an OPS over .800, Meadows is top ten as one of the youngest players in the league. He is doing fine

        • Meadows certainly has the ability to have an OPS over .800 regardless of whether others do or not. He’s clearly capable of hitting more than 3 HRs and even a doubling of that number would raise his OPS close to .800. And, also, doesn’t Alex Blandino have an .800 OPS?

          • Yes, Blandino has an .800 OPS, which is why I specifically said no one “has an OPS over .800”. Meadows is also 2 1/2 years younger than someone with major college experience, so they aren’t exactly comparable in that regard. If he had an .865 OPS in a pitcher’s league, he would be one of the top five prospects in the game. You just don’t put a specific number on a player regardless of their age and league. You’re basically saying that his numbers don’t matter if he was in AAA, the GCL or the California League, where 26 High-A players have an OPS over .800…all 26 of them aren’t doing better than Meadows. That’s not how it works.

            • I won’t speak totally for Jared, but I know I’m certainly not expressing disappointment in Meadows himself. Have defended his performance several times here previously.

              What I’m saying is that doing “fine” is just that. Fine. There’s much more in there, and not a single reason a kid with a 60 hit tool, elite contact skills, good plate discipline, and above average raw shouldn’t be tapping into that more.

              • It’s the league. Eleven of the 12 teams have less than 40 homers and they have all played 89-90 games. The league averages just over two homers every three games, 400 in 538 games. In the South Atlantic League and Eastern League, games have more than a homer per game. As I said above, don’t ignore the league and his age, otherwise you’re missing two of the biggest factors. When I said “fine”, I didn’t mean he was average, he obviously isn’t based on him being top ten in OPS and one of the youngest players in the league. I think it’s wrong to overlook important factors. Fine means he’s a top prospect performing like he should in that league at his age

                • I’m not overlooking anything, John. It’s not even the results I’m talking about here so much as it is the approach. As I’m sure you know, you can’t read a scouting report on Meadows that doesn’t talk about the mechanics and approach limiting game power. That has nothing to do with the league.

                  Never did I say I expect double digit home runs or an ISO over .200, but yes, he absolutely can and should be posting one in the triple digits. Maybe this is the overall plan. Maybe they want him focusing on certain things at this level and the swing change will come later.

                  But Meadows performing to his potential is incredibly exciting, and there’s most certainly more in there than this current profile will ever be able to get out.

        • Our next star without question. Kids got it all and a lot of it.

    • His triple last night had some loft.

  • John: I probably would have selected Cody Dickson as the Top Pitcher based on Tim’s report, his command, and the higher level of play. Last year they slowed him down to improve command – has he returned to the 91-93 or are they still keeping him 87-89? From Lo A to better competition at Hi A he has a better record, slightly better ERA, slightly better control, lower average against, lower WHIP, and higher GO/AO ratio. A nice developmental season so far, and already close to 100 IP. Could he be a possibility for the Arizona Fall League?

    • If theyre holding him back because of innings already at this point in the ssason, I would guess he would not be a Fall League guy.

  • Thanks john.

  • Garcia may have become the third best pitching prospect in the organization. He surely is the breakout prospect for the season. The stuff is there. The results too.

    • jamminjoe66
      July 16, 2015 3:41 am

      I’ve been pleased with his stat lines but haven’t really heard a lot about his stuff. Can you elaborate a little.

    • Steve: He had a disclaimer in the Prospect Guide about his stats last year as he was 2 years older than the average in the DR. Promoted to the US and skipped 3 levels (GCL, Lo A Morgantown, Lo A Bristol) to full season Lo A where he is age appropriate (22) and is doing better all the way around. 3rd best pitching prospect in the organization?

      • “Age appropriate” in this context still comes with the disclaimer that guys his age or older are either college signs just passing through or not very good prospects, if at all.

        For reference, Kingham, Glasnow, and Taillon all were 19/20 and Cole never threw a pitch at this level.

        Garcia is still an extremely promising development as quite literally the only Latin American pitching prospect to have any sort of reasonable success in Huntington’s tenure, but probably jumping the gun by a year or two on “3rd best pitching prospect”.

      • Glasnow
        Then who?

        If one establishes rank by perceived ceiling and if reports about his fastball are accurate, then ranking him third is not fantasy. His control appears good. He strikes out his fair share. And, he has yet to falter.

        One could dock him because of his age; but one could also zero out that debit by considering that

        1. This is his first year in the States.
        2. This is his second year of professional baseball.
        3. He is pitching in a full-season league.

        When evaluating Garcia’s performance, one must weigh the advantages given to him by his age-related physical development with the disadvantages he manages because he lacks experience. That said, his his fastball velocity and control promise future success. He can spend his development time working on his other pitches, pitch sequencing and pitch command.

        • I will play….

          1. Glasnow, by a great deal
          2. Taillon
          3. Mitch Keller
          4. Clay Holmes
          5. Trey Supak
          6. Stephen Tarpley
          7. Yeudy Garcia

          Keller has not pitched this year at all, but Keller is by far the 3rd most talented pitcher in the system. Look at how he performed last year in his first taste of professional ball.

          Tarpley? Well, first, he’s a lefty. Second, he’s the same age as Garcia and in WV and has, likewise, performed amazingly well: 2.38 ERA, 46K in 53 IP, and only 16 BB. His WHIP is a little higher than I would like at 1.30, but he’s still got a ton of talent and is, again, a lefty.

          Holmes is a big, tall righty with awesome stuff. Too many walks historically, but some adjustments to his mechanics after his injury and he’s having an awesome rebound in the control department thus far in his limited innings…and he’s at a higher level of competition.

          Garcia is talented, for sure, but to say he’s a better prospect than Keller or Holmes is a big stretch.

        • Saw Garcia pitch in Greensboro. He looked like the real deal to me. When he got in a little trouble , he started throwing breaking balls for strikes when he was relying mostly on his 93-95 mph fastball before that. He had very good command on all his pitches and was even tougher when things got a little tough. Seems like a great competitor on the mound.

    • let me know when he is doing this in AA. Until then………..

    • You could argue that Garcia has the third best fastball. But he’s not the third best pitching prospect in the system.

      • Why? And who is?

        Before you answer, I don’t buy closer to the majors arguments. Thus, I would never put Kingham and Sampson ahead of Garcia. Ceiling includes the capacity to reach that ceiling. There are no red flags attached to Garcia’s profile.

        • LOL.

        • Garcia doesn’t really have strong secondary stuff right now. He has the feel for a changeup, but doesn’t have a good breaking pitch that can be used as an out pitch. He also hasn’t really been fully tested as a starter, so there’s no guarantee he sticks in the role for the long-term.

          I love the fastball and love the upside. But Garcia is basically a guy with a great fastball and nothing but potential everywhere else. And that potential isn’t guaranteed. Guys like Kingham and Sampson are not only closer to the majors, but have secondary stuff that will allow them to start in the majors. Garcia isn’t at that point yet, with no guarantee that he gets there.

          • “no guarantee”.

            This statement applies to every player. Every player is risky to some degree. The presence of risk implies that the player might fail.

            McCutchen is about a low risk player as one could hope to find. Yet, he failed for much of the first part of this season. He was and is risky to the degree that he’s able to fail. Fortunately, his time of failing came to an end. Someday, it will continue for the rest of his life.

            Some treat words and phrases like guarantee, no guarantee, sure thing, etc as though they assert a decisive fact about the world whereas they refer to trivial features of human knowledge.

            To claim that Garcia comes without a guarantee asserts only that Garcia is a prospect. To assert that Garcia has aspects of pitching he must learn means only that Garcia is a big prospect that is not ready to graduate to the majors or is not a fully developed professional pitcher.

            I’ve yet to read a reply that could convince me that Keller or any other put her is a better prospect than Garcia.

            • Keller has a good breaking pitch. Garcia doesn’t. That’s my argument.

              • But Garcia dominates without a plus breaking pitch. When Keller next pitches we’ll have the opportunity to evaluate his performance.

                • Dominating without a breaking pitch gets far more difficult once you start seeing promotions to upper levels. He’s able to be effective in A ball with his current stuff, but the point is to develop the skills to be effective beyond that.

                  Which is why Keller has a bit of an advantage overall, he’s got an advanced feel for his breaking pitch as opposed to Garcia.

                  • Taillon failed to dominate at the level when he pitched there. He had a plus fastball and curveball. Do you want to argue that Keller projects to be the better pitcher than Taillon? Taillon lacked an advanced feel for either pitch. He’s acquiring that now.

                    Garcia has performed better than Taillon, Kingham and Holmes did when they pitched at this level. This achievement cannot be discounted by dismissing Garcia’s stuff. This fact indicates that Garcia, like Glasnow, has stuff-related qualities that enable him to dominate mat that level.

                    • Taillon’s issue in WV was that his fastball was extremely flat. His curveball was a plus offering at the time, but useless when you have no movement on your fastball and throw it chest high.

                      You can dominate the lower levels with a good fastball and nothing else. If your fastball is poor, it doesn’t matter how good your secondary stuff is.

                    • Garcia has excuses for his flaws just like Taillon. Both were and are projects.

                    • Taillon was much less of a project. They just needed to get some angle on his fastball.

                    • It has taken Taillon years to fix his problems. He had the arm, but not the mechanics.

                      Thanks to his hard work, Taillon is a more exciting prospect today than he was during his first few seasons. I expect him to be less hittable than he had been beforehand. He is less of a risk. Less if a project. More substance than hype.

                    • If you want to sit and judge a player in the minors purely off the result, go ahead. I think its dumb.

                      Taillon was clearly a future stud because of his feel for more than 1 pitch, and it was his ability to develop his entire game that made him successful to this point. To act like dominating in A ball means a ton seems foolish to me. If you throw 95 and locate it well, you can dominate. What that doesnt tell you is the entire quality of a player.

                      Its not hating Garcia to admit he is behind guys like Keller in overall ability because he only has one plus pitch. Garcia is doing well, and with the development of his offspeed will be good. Right now, he’s behind guys like Keller.

                    • I see the situation differently. I put him third., all things considered.

                • Garcia dominates in Low-A. You can dominate there with just his fastball.

                  I’ve seen Keller in the GCL last year, Spring Training this year, and extended Spring Training against the level of competition he’d be going up against. That’s what I’m using to evaluate his performance.

                  • But not every prospect with a plus fast H all dominates at that level. Garcia does.

                    • You need to seriously step back, actually take look around the league, and understand what “dominates” actually means with any sort of context.

                      Garcia has “dominated” A ball to the tune of a 3.13 FIP, good for 36th in the league.

                    • “You need….”

                      I hope you will not be offended when I refuse to take your advice.

                    • Yes. Which is why he’s a good prospect. But he’s not one of the best three in the system. I don’t understand why it’s not good enough to be considered a good prospect. He’s probably going to end up in the 20-25 range in tomorrow’s rankings, and maybe a bit higher. Why is that not good enough for a breakout pitcher who only has a plus fastball and still has a lot of room to develop?

                    • Nice. New top 30 tomorrow?

                    • My claim is that he is the third best pitcher, not the third best prospect.

                      Besides, .Garcia’s place is a debatable point — and I’m debating it. Good enough does not enter into the matter.

                    • But that in no way proves anything, other than he is doing better than “those guys” at using his good FB. For prospects, a ton goes into their basic numbers. What are they working on? Are they purposely working on 1 pitch to develop it? Etc. Plenty of guys have innings where they throw pure offspeed or try to get ahead. Makes your numbers suck if hitters realize you are throwing first pitch FBs or all offspeed, but development is key.

                    • Are you claiming Garcia only throws fastballs? That he does not work on anything else?

                    • Im claiming that a guy with a good FB can dominate that level without good offspeed. Thus, dominating that level does not clearly prove the overall quality as it pertains to system ranking. To claim he’s the third best arm in the system, it’d require looking at his overall ability and not just stats. He’s not got a fantastic overall pitch selection, which isnt to say he wont get it. Right now, if you put him and Keller in AAA and say “go do your best” Keller has the better stuff beyond FB to work with.

                    • You can’t put Keller in AAA. He’s out of commission.

                      Besides, you act as though Garcia lacks secondary pitches and command of his pitches. That’s not true.

                      In any case, we have reached the end of rational forms of argument. Only time will settle the matter.

                    • I never said he lacks those pitches, i said none of them are of great quality. Thats not based on nothing, its based on nearly any scouting report of him. He does not have above average offspeed stuff, thus limiting his prospect value. You continue to take measured statements and attach things to them i, or others, didnt say.

                    • His lack of high quality off speed stuff does not limit his prospect value. His ceiling establishes his prospect value, and his ceiling is high.

                    • So you think your position wasnt dented. So does anyone who believes anything strongly. Of course you didnt see anything super strong to make you disagree with yourself, even though 3 people (one being the guy who follows the team for a job) brought arguments.

                      I think its just biased and basically false to say Garcia has good stuff. He has a good FB, but the rest of his “stuff” is average at this point. And yes, the quality of your offspeed stuff impacts your value. Thats how baseball works. His ceiling is impacted by the quality of his pitches to some degree, not how great he was in A ball alone. Good FB, good results, much work needed to be more than a 1 plus pitch guy. I like him, i trust the team in developing arms and change ups, i see nothing that shows him as more than a good FB arm able to beat very young bats. That aint nothing, but it aint 3rd highest ceiling in this org.

                    • I don’t strongly believe Garcia is the third best pitching prospect. I initially stated that when I wrote he “may be” such.

                      Learn to read.

                    • He excels at fastball use while pitching for the fastball academy. Others did not. Yet, we should consider them superior because….?

              • Do you know when Keller is supposed to pitch or rehab?