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Thread: Huntington on Taillon

      
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    Default Huntington on Taillon

    The draft is now 4 weeks from today I believe. I hadn't seen too many GMs go into detail on a particular player at this point, and Huntington on with Rocco DeMaro went on way longer than I expected when asked about Taillon. Here's what he had to say:

    "He's one of the guys in our mix. Tallion has pure power stuff, but I was in Cleveland when Paul Shuey, on a scale of 20 to 80, had three 80s. A fastball that was 95-98, a breaking ball that was just devastating, and a split finger that was one of the best in the game, and he couldn't close. He couldn't close because he couldn't command it. When you watch Tallion you can give him two now plus breaking balls, you can give him a 95-97 fastball, which on our scale is a 70 to an 80 fastball, so you can give him 3 now plus pitches, and then you watch a 5 foot 6 sophomore stand in there and swing like he's hitting off a tee and you wonder about it. We've got some concerns with Tallion, and as we talked about last year when we talked about some of the high school pitching; did we think they were Beckett? Did we think they were Greinke? Or you know, John Danks and Gavin Floyd, those are 4 of the 21 I think it was at the time I went back and researched elite level high school pitchers who were taken early in the draft. Most of them are out of the game, they didn't even get to AA, they just blew out before then. So now we have to look at the body, we have to look at the delivery, we have to look at the arm action, the stress on the arm. Tallion's definitely in our mix, but to sit here and say that we're ready to commit to him at 2 is a bit premature. We've got a lot more work that we need to do.

    Based on pure stuff I can see those points of view (people saying he's the clear #2 in this draft), when you go watch him and you go watch how it plays there's some cause for concern. When you go watch Strasburg there's no cause for concern. Dustin Ackley was the best hitter in the draft, arguably one of the best hitters in the last four or five drafts. This year's group, when you go back to the '08 group with Pedro and Smoak and Posey and Matusz, it was a tremendously deep draft. If you put this year's group in with that year's class you're going to have a lot of guys from this year who would fall well below two, well below three, well below four comparing those two classes."

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Pretty much what a lot of us are saying outside of on e or two Pirates bloggers that have boners for the "un-elite" pitchers in this draft... there's really nobody worth the #2 pick. There's really nobody worth paying more than the #2 slot, that's for sure.

    Huntington questioning Taillon (solid questioning IMO since he gave scouting info where bloggers give statistical info) really has that feel of "I'm saying this now because we aren't taking Taillon and here's why"..

    Is this one of the first draft players Huntington has really talked about recently?
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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Given the lack of productive history of high dollar pitchers going 1-5 in the draft, I couldn't argue with anyone not going that route.

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Quote Originally Posted by just_ridin View Post
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    Given the lack of productive history of high dollar pitchers going 1-5 in the draft, I couldn't argue with anyone not going that route.
    So you enjoyed my piece a few months about avoiding pitchers with a Top 3 pick?

    Take the absurd failure rate of pitchers drafted Top 3 the past 10 years or so and now add in the Pittsburgh Pirates success rate with them. Yes, Bullington shouldn't have been drafted, Moskos neither, JVB should've been a hitter, but Lincoln had the arm injury and he's likely to not end up as dominant as he was projected to be and then there's all the other turds for arms the Pirates drafted 1st round like Burnett .....

    Kinda sucks that when we get a GM that actually puts time and thought into a draft, draft's good players, the team spends money on the draft and 2 out of 3 drafts and really garbage drafts for 1st Round talent
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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    Take the absurd failure rate of pitchers drafted Top 3 the past 10 years or so
    Can't remember where, maybe it was the mighty smurf (Kurkjian) who was talking about top 5 pitchers back through the 70's...it's an incredibly low rate of success here.

    I remember the hype on Van Poppel, Brien Taylor, and the SI coverchild Ben McDonald...and countless others.

    Hitters are just a safer bet when you're paying that much money, period. Unless there's a Strasburg-type there, I'm going with a bat instead of an arm that high 100 times out of 100.

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Funny that you guys mention this now, as Jim Callis from Baseball America put together a list in his chat today of the top 20 draft prospects of the last 20 years based on perception of the player coming in. He didn't mention it in his response, but the pitchers have been pretty terrible, especially when compared to the hitters.

    Here's the list:

    1. Stephen Strasburg, rhp, San Diego State (Nationals, No. 1, 2009)
    2. Mark Prior, rhp, Southern California (Cubs, No. 2, 2001)
    3. Ben McDonald, rhp, Louisiana State (Orioles, No. 1, 1989)
    4. Justin Upton, ss, Great Bridge HS, Chesapeake, Va. (Diamondbacks, No. 1, 2005)
    5. Todd Van Poppel, rhp, Martin HS, Arlington, Texas (Athletics, No. 14, 1990)
    6. Brien Taylor, lhp, Beaufort (N.C.) HS (Yankees, No. 1, 1991)
    7. Alex Rodriguez, ss, Westminster Christian HS, Miami (Mariners, No. 1, 1993)
    8. J.D. Drew, of, Florida State (Phillies, No. 4, 1997/unsigned)
    9. David Price, lhp, Vanderbilt (Devil Rays, No. 1, 2007)
    10. Matt Wieters, c, Georgia Tech (Orioles, No. 5, 2007)
    11. Paul Wilson, rhp, Florida State (Mets, No. 1, 1994)
    12. Kris Benson, rhp, Clemson (Pirates, No. 1, 1996)
    13. Mark Teixeira, 3b, Georgia Tech (Rangers, No. 5, 2001)
    14. Pedro Alvarez, 3b, Vanderbilt (Pirates, No. 2, 2008)
    15. Bryce Harper, c, CC of Southern Nevada (2010)
    16. Josh Hamilton, of, Athens Drive HS, Raleigh, N.C. (Devil Rays, No. 1, 1999)
    17. Jameson Taillon, rhp, The Woodlands (Texas) HS (2010)
    18. Josh Beckett, rhp, Spring (Texas) HS (Marlins, No. 2, 1999)
    19. B.J. Upton, ss, Greenbrier Christian Academy, Chesapeake, Va. (Devil Rays, No. 2, 2002)
    20. Joe Mauer, c, Cretin-Derham Hall, St. Paul (Twins, No. 1, 2001)

    Hitters:
    4. Justin Upton: Budding star. Great MLB season at age 21 last year.
    7. Alex Rodriguez: Sure fire Hall of Famer (unless PEDs keep him out).
    8. JD Drew: productive big league career, but a bit of a disappointment due to injuries. Still, a career .895 OPS.
    10. Matt Wieters: Tore through the minors his first year, off to a solid start in the majors.
    13. Mark Teixeira: Star level player, always in the lineup.
    14. Pedro Alvarez: Good first year in the minors. Showing power as expected and should be in the majors soon enough.
    15. Bryce Harper: Not yet drafted.
    16. Josh Hamilton: Struggled with off field issues and now with injuries. When he's been healthy he's been very productive, and can still have a pretty decent career.
    19. BJ Upton: A bit of a disappointment, but he's been productive for a CF, has shown flashes of the player everyone expected, and is still only 25.
    20. Joe Mauer: Best catcher and baseball, and maybe the best all around player in the league.

    Pitchers:
    1. Stephen Strasburg: He's looked very good, but it's too early to make a call on him.
    2. Mark Prior: Looked very good for a couple years, but was out of baseball at age 25 due to a series of injuries.
    3. Ben McDonald: A decent, but unspectacular career that was over by age 29.
    5. Todd Van Poppel: Struggled in the minors, struggled even more in the majors.
    6. Brien Taylor: Good first season at A+, decent second season at AA, got injured and never made it above A ball again.
    9. David Price: Great first season in the minors, solid early major league success.
    11. Paul Wilson: One very good minor league season, then pretty much sucked everywhere else.
    12. Kris Benson: Been injured about a thousand times, but had at least a couple mediocre MLB seasons. Still hanging around.
    17. Jameson Taillon: Not yet drafted.
    18. Josh Beckett: The only undeniable success of all the pitchers on the list.

    Of the 9 hitters there are only a couple of guys who were disappointing and no complete flops. I guess Hamilton flopped for the Rays, but he still carved out a career after the Rule 5 draft. Of the 9 pitchers there's only one guy who wasn't a disappointment and at least 3 complete failures. 2 at early stages at least look promising.
    Last edited by jnn123; May-10-2010 at 09:56 PM.

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    That's a solid list and it looks like slowly but surely everyone else is starting to jump on "worry about pitching" bandwagon...

    I said it back in February and I'll say it again ... the BUST rate on pitchers is very high. There's no great scientific reasoning going on either. I displayed a timeline of 1999-2005 and elsewhere I think I went back to 1995 and pitchers taken in the Top 5 had something awful like a 17% success rate. People tried to argue and say "well, so and so was an overdraft for money, or this guy etc...) doesn't matter, never did. It's like a hex in the Top 5 that whoever is picked usually busts.

    Now, add to that Huntington's belief and (I'm sure it's echoed throughout baseball because it's been mentioned how this is a weak Top End draft) about how these guys in the top of this draft wouldn't even really be in the top 5 of say the 2008 draft....

    I'm prepped for a very similar route to 2009 in the 1st round. We're going to take a bat, one that will sign for slot because there's no talent in this draft that is worth more than slot and load up throughout on others. Some will whine that it was done because Bob Nutting is cheap, some will whine for the 100th time despite being proven wrong that we have X-amount of extra payroll laying around and it should all go into the draft ... but these are really going to be draft strength based decisions
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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    I'd be shocked if this pick wasn't someone like, my preference, MannyMachado or Christian Colon. Maybe a Josh Sale or perhaps a Brentz although I don't think he's really on their radar.

    You know I think the problem is a matter of timing to be honest. I love what they are doing over these last couple of drafts and going forward. The key is how do you manage or balance continuing this type of draft strategy with intermingling some potential stars and superstars like McCutch, LaRoche, Alvarez, Lincoln, Sanchez, Tabata, Marte. You wanna give these guys some help in the next 2-3 years to go with Morton, Ollie, and one of Maholm and Duke (although I would trade them both along with Doumit and Walker and Pearce at the trade deadline) Will some of these younger pitchers like Morris, Alderson, Veal, Locke, ZVR, Cain, Pounders, Adcock, Pribanic, Dodson, Strickland and so forth be ready to pitch in and be part of a winning team. Provide a pitching staff that can support some of the stars on this team?!?!?

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Kipper--Related/Unrelated.

    Do you take Harper if the Nats don't??

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Without question and in a heartbeat!

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Harper is already practically in the Nats Farm system.

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Quote Originally Posted by DCBILL View Post
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    Kipper--Related/Unrelated.

    Do you take Harper if the Nats don't??
    No.

    I just don't like him as much as what Scott Boras is going to demand for him. I don't think Harper is worth X amount more than some other hitters and I'd prefer to take some of that money and not waste it on Scott Boras's demands rather than talent and put it towards hitting some overslots later where kids fell down because their signing demands were more.

    The kid is killing the ball in Juco which is great. 23 Hr's, BA over .400 , I just get scared easily by over hyped players

    I wouldn't mind IF they drafted Harper if he fell, I don't care if they would pass Harper over either
    Last edited by Kipper; May-12-2010 at 10:09 AM.
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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    someone once told me, draft hitters because you can always trade for pitchers.

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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    Pretty much what a lot of us are saying outside of on e or two Pirates bloggers that have boners for the "un-elite" pitchers in this draft... there's really nobody worth the #2 pick. There's really nobody worth paying more than the #2 slot, that's for sure.

    Huntington questioning Taillon (solid questioning IMO since he gave scouting info where bloggers give statistical info) really has that feel of "I'm saying this now because we aren't taking Taillon and here's why"..

    Is this one of the first draft players Huntington has really talked about recently?
    I completely agree with you...and even Huntington here. The best thing that could have happened for the Pirates was for a guy who come out and clearly cement himself as the #2 overall pick. I thought that Ranaudo would do that and at the beginning of the season (first game...woopdeedooo)it looked like he may do that. He got hurt and never pitched well enough to cement himself as the guy. Neither did McGuire in my mind. Pomerantz probably cemented himself as a top 5 pick...again just not enough to be the #2 guy.

    No one has stood out...so take a player...sign him...and go on about life getting better players in the middle rounds. Blake Dean.
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    Default Re: Huntington on Taillon

    Quote Originally Posted by BigBen2112 View Post
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    I completely agree with you...and even Huntington here. The best thing that could have happened for the Pirates was for a guy who come out and clearly cement himself as the #2 overall pick. I thought that Ranaudo would do that and at the beginning of the season (first game...woopdeedooo)it looked like he may do that. He got hurt and never pitched well enough to cement himself as the guy. Neither did McGuire in my mind. Pomerantz probably cemented himself as a top 5 pick...again just not enough to be the #2 guy.

    No one has stood out...so take a player...sign him...and go on about life getting better players in the middle rounds. Blake Dean.
    I mean, it kinda sucks though. When you are drafting at #2 you want a player that is a #2 talent. You want to have the choice of an Evgeni Malkin type talent at #2 but all there is to choose from are the Jordan Staal #2 types. Guys that wouldn't be Top 5 in a lot of drafts.

    I'd much prefer to have a Dustin Ackley and throw a bunch of money at him but that's obviously not the case. Just sucks to have a high pick, finally spending money on the draft and we are getting shafted with talent
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