My track record of being a day too early for a news peg remains intact…
If you’re looking for validation that “Next Man Up” is Carter Kieboom—and the one after that is Luis Garcia—you’ll be pleased. If you’re thinking ahead to the depth necessary to sustain next summer’s injuries to the starting pitching, then you might be concerned.
Let’s dive into the 20-80 scale that FanGraphs uses before we stack ’em up: 40 is a backup, 50 is a starter, 60 is an All-Star, 70 is a Top 10 player, 80 is Top 5. For pitchers, it’s a little different – the scale is keyed on starting pitchers and breaks down: 40 (FIP ~5; #5/6) to 45 (4.20; #4/5) to 50 (4.00; #4) to 55 (3.70; #3/4) to 60 (3.30; #3) to 70 (>3.00; #2). Eighty-grade pitchers are your top 1-3 arms in the game. For more info, read their primer.
Now, let’s break down their Top 21 by scale:
|45||Jackson Rutledge, Mason Denaburg, Wil Crowe|
|40+||Andry Lara, Eddy Yean, Matt Cronin|
|40||Tim Cate, Seth Romero, Drew Mendoza, Yasel Antuna, Jeremy De La Rosa, Israel Pineda, Joan Adon|
|35+||Roismar Quintana, Jackson Cluff, Raudy Read, James Bourque, Tyler Dyson, Reid Schaller|
(Italics = New for 2020; Bold = Improved from 2019)
Roughly a third of the list is new – about half are 2019 draft picks. Graduating from last year: Victor Robles and Tanner Rainey. Gone from the system: Sterling Sharp (Rule 5) and Taylor Guilbeau (traded). Dropped out: Gage Canning, Malvin Peña, Jordan Mills, Ben Braymer, and Brigham Hill.
Notable nuggets I spotted in the writeups…
• Kieboom as good as Trea Turner at SS? On defense? I think we’re parked, man.I think we’re parked, man.
• Garcia projecting better at 2B than 3B? I’ve read and seen that as Garcia grows into his “man body,” (Lee’s pics this past fall certainly show that he’s no longer a beanpole) he’ll be a step too slow for shortstop, but this is the first I’ve seen not suggesting third base as an alternative.
• Tanner Roark redux? They’re still high on Crowe and he’s their comp.
• Back to the ‘pen for Cate? Let’s hope the FO doesn’t read this (see: Fedde, Erick).
• Seth Romero sighting? They’re saying Romero was clocked in the mid-90s in instrux. If he can make it through spring training without getting suspended, who knows?
• There’s a sizable list of of “Younger Potential Helium Types,” which includes some of our spots from the GCL/DSL like Viandel Peña, Junior Martina, Leandro Miliani (sic).
As noted comments, this is a writeup that leans heavily toward scouting, so you might not always see the kind of numbers you’d like to see if/when you look them up.