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Thread: John Sickels Top 20

      
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    Default John Sickels Top 20

    If you read any of his stuff Sickels is an interesting guy when it comes to making his lists. He tends to value stats very highly, particularly for hitters, rather than just thinking about upside like a lot of people do. That makes it very interesting that he rates ZVR a B- after 1 inning of professional work. He must have fallen in love with him in high school. He also tends to be very reluctant to give high grades to a pitcher who has already been injured, which probably explains his ranking on Lincoln.

    1) Pedro Alvarez, 3B, Grade A: Bat looks excellent. Even if he moves to first base, his bat will be good enough for him to be an All-Star. Upside: David Ortiz.

    2) Jose Tabata, OF, Grade B: I don't know if I agree with the Pirates about his power, but I do believe them about his age and at 21 he is still VERY young with high upside.

    3) Tony Sanchez, C, Grade B: He was a slight overdraft but I like him, excellent defense and it doesn't look like his power was all aluminum.

    4) Zack Von Rosenberg, RHP, Grade B-: This is an aggressive grade for a high school pitcher with just one pro inning under his belt, but I really like his pitchability and have a strong intuitive feeling about him. He still has some projection left, too. Going to take a risk with this one and put him ahead of Alderson and Lincoln.

    5) Tim Alderson, RHP, Grade B-: Borderline C+. Loss of velocity and break on the curve is troubling, but he's still a guy who held his own in Double-A at age 20. Stock has dropped but still an intriguing property as an inning-eater type. Ranks ahead of Lincoln because he's younger.

    6) Brad Lincoln, RHP, Grade C+: Borderline B-. Command looks all the way back, but components are more those of an inning-eater type than a true ace.

    7) Chase D'arnaud, INF, Grade C+: Speed, on-base ability, solid defense, might develop more pop. At worst a good utility guy and could get beyond that.

    8) Starling Marte, OF, Grade C+: Uber-tools, particularly speed, but raw with the strike zone.

    9) Rudy Owens, LHP, Grade C+: Outstanding K/BB ratio. Was hittable after moving up to Lynchburg, though he maintained a good strikeout rate. Great command of decent stuff but need to see in Double-A.

    10) Ronald Uviedo, RHP, Grade C+: Live arm stands out but unsure of future role.

    11) Victor Black, RHP, Grade C+: Another live arm, Dallas Baptist product has high ceiling but needs better control.

    12) Daniel McCutchen, RHP, Grade C+: Old for a rookie at age 27, but has nothing left to prove in the minors and knows how to pitch. Another guy with a great K/BB ratio.

    13) Brett Lorin, RHP, Grade C+: Sleeper prospect snapped up from the Mariners, could rank as high as 10th.

    14) Robbie Grossman, OF, Grade C+: High strikeout rate is off-putting, but he also draws walks, steals bases, and has untapped power potential.

    15) Diego Moreno, RHP, Grade C+: Lively relief arm came out of nowhere, need to see at higher levels but could advance quickly as a pen asset.

    16) Justin Wilson, LHP, Grade C+: Component ratios at Lynchburg weren't great, but he has a good arm and lefties with above average stuff get plenty of chances.

    17) Colton Cain, LHP, Grade C+: Could rank as high as 12th. Another high-ceiling arm bought away from college like Von Rosenberg, though not as polished.

    18) Gorkys Hernandez, OF, Grade C: Baseball America has him at 10th on their Pirates list due to his tools, but I'm starting to doubt the bat and his skills seem to be stagnating.

    19) Trent Stevenson, RHP, Grade C: Another young projectable high school arm bought out of college ball.

    20) Brooks Pounders, RHP, Grade C: Less projectable than Stevenson but another interesting prep arm. The rotation in the New York-Penn League and/or Low-A is going to be really intriguing in 2010.

    OTHERS: (Grade Cs): Ramon Aguero, RHP; Nate Baker, LHP; Ramon Cabrera, C; Evan Chambers, OF; Jarek Cunningham, INF; Zack Dodson, LHP; Wesley Freeman, OF; Brian Friday, SS; Brock Holt, INF; Jeff Inman, RHP; Quincy Latimore, OF; Jeff Locke, LHP; Jordy Mercer, SS; Quinton Miller, RHP; Bryan Morris, RHP; Danny Moskos, LHP; John Raynor, OF; Hunter Strickland, RHP; Donald Veal, LHP; Neil Walker, 3B.

    This farm system is improving, thanks to trades, more aggressive drafting, and additional scouting in Latin America.

    Alvarez is the crown jewel, of course, and there isn't a lot really that needs to be said about him. Tabata is a more difficult case, since even if they're right about his age, he risks tweenerdom if his power doesn't come along. I like Tony Sanchez a lot and people need to lay off about the decision to draft him. They poured a ton of money into projectable guys in later rounds, and I think the strategy of mixing skill players with tool players will pay dividends.

    The system is thin in position players beyond the top group. I like d'Arnaud but he may end up as just a good role player and not a starter. We'll know more once he faces Double-A pitching. Marte could be anything from a big star to a huge bust. Heavy investments have been made in young pitching recently. I like Von Rosenberg the best of the bunch, but Cain, Pounders, Stevenson, Dodson, and Miller all have significant upside potential. There are also live-armed guys who could help in the bullpen relatively soon, and there are inning-eaters such as Lincoln, Alderson, and Strickland to provide some leavening to the upside guys.

    If what I saw in Arizona is any indication, Donald Veal could be a surprise success in 2010.

    The Pirates could use some additional bats to go with all these arms, but overall this is an organization on the right track in terms of player development. The debut of Andrew McCutchen was just the first step.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Hey, jnn -

    Just a thought: it might be a good idea if you used the "Quote" button and just used part of the article, rather than copying and pasting it whole from another website - and then toss the link up there for people to click to (let 'em know what the source is, of course)...

    (Don't wanna get The Tavern into any kind of copyright B.S., y'know?)

    But, speaking about the article itself, one of the things I found interesting was that D. Cutch was rated so low - I mean, I think it's a pretty good chance he comes north to work out of the pen this season. I dunno.
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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    - Gorky's stock is dropping - #18?

    - I would have thought that Veal has pitched his way into the top 20.

    - I was impressed that Brett Lorin was ranked #13. He was one of the relatively obscure prospects we got from the Mariners in the Wilson trade.

    - So far, there is no mention of any Pirates relievers that were non-tendered on this thread. Lets keep it that way.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    It's interesting to me that two years after DL was removed as GM of the Pirates there's almost no trace of him in the minors as far as top-shelf prospects. Certainly not a bad thing-the Pirates have some interesting players going forward due to to the new FO. Just another reason why I'm not so torn up by the release of Capps-there are a lot of people coming along to replace him.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by night9hawk View Post
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    ....release of Capps-there are a lot of people coming along to replace him.


    Thanks for not mentioning any former Pirates relievers who were recently non-tendered on this thread.




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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Not a bad looking list. Alot of pitchers with some upside. Interesting that Morris and Locke didn't make the top 20. I like the emerging competition.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by cocktailsfor2 View Post
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    one of the things I found interesting was that D. Cutch was rated so low - I mean, I think it's a pretty good chance he comes north to work out of the pen this season. I dunno.
    I think age had a lot do do with that rating.

    And how sad is it that Danny Moskos and Neil Walker don't even make the top 20 cut.

    ...or maybe that just shows how much deeper the system is than it used to be. Is that glass half empty or half full?

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Moskos wasn't in the top 20? This guy must be a hack.
    The only player in the NHL more overpaid than MAF is Jordan Staal

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by tocchet92 View Post
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    Thanks for not mentioning any former Pirates relievers who were recently non-tendered on this thread.



    My point, which is relevant, is that there are pitching solutions coming along that have a lot more upside than Capps. I think most of the optimists on this board are drawing strength from the fact the Pirates would not been competitive 2010 with the fan favorites traded in the past two years. They're cheered because the minor league pipeline now has more talent than the likes of Brad Eldred or Neil Walker.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by Daskid View Post
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    I think age had a lot do do with that rating.

    And how sad is it that Danny Moskos and Neil Walker don't even make the top 20 cut.

    ...or maybe that just shows how much deeper the system is than it used to be. Is that glass half empty or half full?
    Much deeper system. Nobody is a lock to make it to big club but it's nice that the Pirates have more than 2 or 3 bets on the table now.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by night9hawk View Post
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    My point, which is relevant, is that there are pitching solutions coming along that have a lot more upside than CENSORED I think most of the optimists on this board are drawing strength from the fact the Pirates would not been competitive 2010 with the fan favorites traded in the past two years. They're cheered because the minor league pipeline now has more talent than the likes of Brad Eldred or Neil Walker.

    You did it again!

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by tocchet92 View Post
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    - Gorky's stock is dropping - #18?

    - I would have thought that Veal has pitched his way into the top 20.

    - I was impressed that Brett Lorin was ranked #13. He was one of the relatively obscure prospects we got from the Mariners in the Wilson trade.

    - So far, there is no mention of any Pirates relievers that were non-tendered on this thread. Lets keep it that way.
    Veal still has to prove his AFL numbers in the minors. He started his turn around if I remember correctly at the *** end of last season and then into the AFL. So... I wouldn't be surprised if people like Sickels and others are just waiting to see a little more from Veal in the minors.

    Brett Lorin was my personal favorite from that trade, it's nice to see him get some recognition.

    I think the biggest surprises are Alderson and Lincoln. There's not been much that's been written positively about them recently. Many consider Lincoln a #3 type, some don't like alderson's loss of velocity. I think this will be a pretty big season for those 2 in the "prove themselves" department

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    It's a huge year for both. I would say it's bigger for Lincoln though given his age.

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    i just have one question on the rating, what is considered C? C being average major league abilities, or C being maybe AAA for lifer?

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    Default Re: John Sickels Top 20

    Quote Originally Posted by tocchet92 View Post
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    You did it again!
    I can't believe you keep picking out one little bit of what I'm saying and blowing it up into something much more than I intend it to be.

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