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Thread: Article: Adam Walker: Power and Potential

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivlikejehu View Post
    If, at age 22, a player can't make consistent contact against FSL pitching, he's a huge, huge longshot to pan out at all. I'm not familiar with a single example.
    *Joey Votto hit .256 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 83 RBI.
    Top player for Cincinatti Reds

    *Matt Kemp hit .306 his year in FSL with 27 HR and 90 RBI.
    Arguably one of the Top players in MLB before injuries

    *Marcell Ozuna hit .266 his year in FSL with 24 HR and 95 RBI.
    Now starts with Marlins after playing in FSL in 2012

    *Javier Baez hit .274 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 57 RBI (half season)
    Top 5 prospect in all of minor league baseball.

    Kennys Vargas hit .267 las year in FSL with 19 HR and 93 RBI
    Now everyone is in love with him (rightfully so) because he was hitting over .300 this year and producing at the same pace.

    Low batting averages do not neccesarily mean poor production, but it does mean poor contact. These guys are all successful because they produced results in their careers, not just average. If you are judging based on the success of a Matt Kemp then you are being unrealistic, because every prospect can't be considered amongst the best to play the game. Most are hoping to be solid (good) MLB players.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    Note: Walker was a 2nd team All American at 1B in college behind CJ Cron (plays with CA Angels now). Rated the 2nd best defensive 1B by Baseball America in 2011 (all while hitting .409).

    To the age question - Who is older Trout or Harper? People want results! As long as your not old - what true difference does it make to your team if one prospect is 1 year younger or older? I repeat - Walker would be the second youngest player on Twins AA team if he were promoted. If I'm not mistaken, he was the second youngest overall college player drafted in 2012 (4 year schools).

    Don't get me wrong - I looove Kepler - but believe in Walker's potential more. MWL and FSL managers must think enough of Walker to nominate him as an All Star starter each of the last 2 years as well, despite low BA and OBP.
    I wasn't picking Kepler over Walker or vice-versa. . just asking the question. I agree that the difference in age is a non-issue. Making a MLB roster in this day and age is a marathon and not a sprint. . . I simply was wondering what the readers think of the question. . Walker vs. Kepler?

  3. #23
    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
    Three true outcome players are valuable. See Dunn, Adam.

    My only question is whether Walker is a two true outcome player, which isn't nearly as valuable (and often turns the player into a bench bat).
    See: Colabello, Christopher Adrian

    As far as Walker is concerned, he is 22. Here is what some other Twins' position players either did or are doing at Fort Myers this and last season (with their ages in () :

    Michael (23) : .322/.379/.432
    DJ Hicks (23) : .270/.364/.405
    Vargas (22) : .267/.344/.468
    Rosario (21) : .329/.377/.527
    Harrison (21) : .279/.349/.378
    Sano (20) : .330/.424/.655
    Polanco (20): .291/.362/.415

    HR, contact and pitch selectivity, the above list is a good reason why Walker should not be considered a Twins' top 10-15 prospect... If he get his contact rate up higher a bit and his OBP up higher, that might be a different story. But sub .300 OBP is not a good sign.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    *Joey Votto hit .256 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 83 RBI.
    Top player for Cincinatti Reds

    *Matt Kemp hit .306 his year in FSL with 27 HR and 90 RBI.
    Arguably one of the Top players in MLB before injuries

    *Marcell Ozuna hit .266 his year in FSL with 24 HR and 95 RBI.
    Now starts with Marlins after playing in FSL in 2012

    *Javier Baez hit .274 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 57 RBI (half season)
    Top 5 prospect in all of minor league baseball.

    Kennys Vargas hit .267 las year in FSL with 19 HR and 93 RBI
    Now everyone is in love with him (rightfully so) because he was hitting over .300 this year and producing at the same pace.

    Low batting averages do not neccesarily mean poor production, but it does mean poor contact. These guys are all successful because they produced results in their careers, not just average. If you are judging based on the success of a Matt Kemp then you are being unrealistic, because every prospect can't be considered amongst the best to play the game. Most are hoping to be solid (good) MLB players.
    Could you show those gentlemen's OBPs, please? That's the issue with Walker mostly, not the BA. He has a hard time with breaking pitches and he has been swinging at bad pitches.

    EDIT. Here they are, along with their age in the FSL, to tell a complete story:

    Votto .330 OBP age 21
    Kemp .349 OBP age 20
    Ozuna .328 OBP age 21
    Baez .338 OBP age 20
    Vargas .344 OBP age 22

    Walker .298 OBP age 22.

    HUGE difference, in both OBP and age
    Last edited by Thrylos; 07-10-2014 at 06:18 PM.
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  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    *Joey Votto hit .256 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 83 RBI.
    Top player for Cincinatti Reds

    *Matt Kemp hit .306 his year in FSL with 27 HR and 90 RBI.
    Arguably one of the Top players in MLB before injuries

    *Marcell Ozuna hit .266 his year in FSL with 24 HR and 95 RBI.
    Now starts with Marlins after playing in FSL in 2012

    *Javier Baez hit .274 his year in FSL with 17 HR and 57 RBI (half season)
    Top 5 prospect in all of minor league baseball.

    Kennys Vargas hit .267 las year in FSL with 19 HR and 93 RBI
    Now everyone is in love with him (rightfully so) because he was hitting over .300 this year and producing at the same pace.
    Baez and Vargas are prospects, not Major Leaguers. Kemp, Votto, and Ozuna were all significantly younger and better than Walker in the FSL.

    Here's another way of looking at it- here are the top 3 HR hitters in the FSL from 2004-2010

    2004: Brandon Sing, Delwyn Young, Raul Tablado
    2005: Andrew Wilson, Matt Kemp, Garth McKinney
    2006: Jay Garthwaite, Brock Peterson, Jesus Flores
    2007: Jacob Butler, Sergio Pedroza, Allen Craig
    2008: Ryan Strieby, Brian Dopirak, Jeramy Laster
    2009: Brahaim Maldonado, Caleb Gindl, Chris Parmelee tied with Kirk Nieuwenhuis
    2010: Mike McDade, Melky Mesa, Quincy Latimore

    Of those 21 players, 2 turned into MLB regulars, so about 10%. Both- Kemp and Craig - hit over .300. All the others "produced" in the FSL and yet did nothing in the Majors.

  6. #26
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    My question is if he continues to do what he is doing at every level like he has shown to consistently do [Rookie - A & A+]:
    1) Lead his league in HRs and either 1st or amongst the top in RBI
    2) Score more than everyone on his team (Runs) and amongst the leaders of the league
    3) Yet have a low OBP and moderate BA

    Why do his teammates (1 thru 9) with higher the OBP have fewer RBI and Runs scored when they are in fact on base more?

    How has that resulted in more wins for the MLB Twins who sit at 13th in the MLB in OBP category?

    To your point:
    Maldanado .348 OBP;
    Gindl .363 OBP;
    Parmelee .359OBP;
    Nieuwenhuis .357 OBP;
    McDade .315 OBP;
    Mesa .338 OBP;
    Latimore .323 OBP;

    These individuals all had a decent OBP in addition to having great power and should have been high prospects for their respective organizations. Sometimes it's about feeling and not the projectables. Nobody said he was Kemp or Craig (not many are). We'll leave that for the Sano's and Buxtons. I'll pray for a Khris Davis (rookie leftfielder for Brewers) - .305 OBP / .252 BA with his 14 HR and 47 RBI at the All Star Break. Brewers have 52 wins and have the best record in NL.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post

    These individuals all had a decent OBP in addition to having great pow.
    Well that's the whole point. With just a couple exceptions, they weren't. Minor league counting numbers don't matter. Every years tons of minor leaguers put up big numbers but aren't good prospects. That's just how it is. Sorry.
    Last edited by drivlikejehu; 07-10-2014 at 09:02 PM.

  8. #28
    Twins Moderator All-Star diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
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    I think that you can find plenty of examples of folks who fared well in the FSL and failed in the big leagues. You can find plenty for those who didn't fare well in the FSL and succeeded in the big leagues too.

    Let's tone down the personal sniping and remember that these are our opinions. NOT FACT.

  9. #29
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    The Sam Deduno of the hitters. Very divided opinions. I'm rooting for him. It is not only chicks that dig the long ball. Walker fits in well with today's hitters. Lower batting average with power. Seems like a good fit for Toronto.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    I think that you can find plenty of examples of folks who fared well in the FSL and failed in the big leagues. You can find plenty for those who didn't fare well in the FSL and succeeded in the big leagues too.

    Let's tone down the personal sniping and remember that these are our opinions. NOT FACT.
    I believe that numbers can be a prediction of what to expect in the future as well. I believe that isolated success is also not a good reason to bet the farm. Lastly I do believe that consistency (bad and good) is worth taking notice too. Walker's negatives definitely leave you wondering (agreed). For me his Appalachian league - Midwest league - Florida State League consistent success leaves me believing. Great article. Being a prospect is all about potential - let's enjoy the ride.

  11. #31
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    He has the power tool and fielding tool but man he strikes out a lot. His lack of improvement in that area continues to be a big red flag.

    But boy he seems like a good guy. Hope he can improve.

  12. #32
    I'll take a .220ba with 25 big flys, and a duck hunter any day

  13. #33
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    Below is an interview with Ft. Myers Miracle manager Doug Mientkiewicz. He speaks on Buxton; Polanco; Adam Brett Walker; and Berrios. I think many a blogger would find his & organizational comments interesting on Walker. [Click link below and find Monday July 7th interview "The Ride with Reuesse" (Hour 1) - you might have to scroll to middle of interview to find Dougs comments]

    TRex found this interview
    Ruesse had an interview with Dougie Baseball on Monday in which Dougie (in TK form) was very complimentary of Adam Walker. He thinks his power will play at higher levels, and also noted Walker's knack for driving in runs, especially in key situations (actually said that Walker's homers aren't when the team is ahead by 7 runs, etc.).

    http://www.1500espn.com/ondemand/reusse

  14. #34
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    In an earlier post someone said he is hitting around .400 with bases loaded and very well with runners in scoring position is key. It might mean that when he concentrates he can be very succesful. It may also mean that when he bats in a non-high reward situation he has a much more cavalier attitude. This should be something that is coachable.

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ncgo4 View Post
    In an earlier post someone said he is hitting around .400 with bases loaded and very well with runners in scoring position is key. It might mean that when he concentrates he can be very succesful. It may also mean that when he bats in a non-high reward situation he has a much more cavalier attitude. This should be something that is coachable.
    I'd agree, but those also tend to be fastball situations as well. Walker can destroy fastballs in the zone. He needs to learn to lay off breaking pitches out of the zone and be able to do something with the ones in the zone. As he progresses, he's going to see much better breaking pitches. I really hope he figures it out, because if he does, he's going to be a star.

  16. #36
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    It is easy to root for Walker but the contact issues are a huge concern. When you add in plate discipline issues as well, it is hard to see him as a top prospect, yet. When you compare him to say Arcia, Arcia is struggling with contact issues in the majors, yet was able to hit for average at every level as well as show comparable power to Walker.


    I hope Walker figures some things out, but I feel that Adam Dunn type players are somewhat overrated. Their production generally comes in bunches, with long stretches of time where they not only almost worthless offensively but are often a drag on the team if they have no defensive value or aren't walking much.


    I suspect there is some hope for Walker because he is considered a good athlete rather than just a bat, like several other prospects in the Twins system. I am also sure he will get opportunities, he certainly has a high ceiling.

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    I'll take a .220ba with 25 big flys, and a duck hunter any day
    A .220 BA, with very few walks and 25 HR's would be a pretty awful hitter. That would be like Adam Dunn without the OBP and half the power. Yikes.

  18. #38
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    Walker has to mature as a hitter, IMHO. This might mean that he is a guy who can be pitched to, but who pounds "mistake pitches". If he can turn a bunch of mistakes into long balls, he can be successful at any level. The other piece in the puzzle is to be more selective, without losing too much aggressiveness. It's tough to thread the needle, but some hitters can and do succeed despite high K numbers.

    Also, it helps that Walker has good speed, and a good arm. He should develop into an above-average outfielder who can steal a few bags in addition to having plus-plus power.

  19. #39
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    What is the rationale for getting on base at a lesser rate than most (low OBP), but scoring more than most in the league? This again has been a pattern yearly and not a lucky phenomenon.

    if he were able to repeat this improbable series of performances like he has throughout the minors thus far, (.250 BA - .300 OBP - 150 Ks - 90+ Runs - 30+ HRs - 110+ RBI) at the MLB level, would you want him in the Twins lineup? Just YES or NO and why?
    Last edited by lightfoot789; 07-13-2014 at 10:34 AM.

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by lightfoot789 View Post
    What is the rationale for getting on base at a lesser rate than most (low OBP), but scoring more than most in the league? This again has been a pattern yearly and not a lucky phenomenon.

    if he were able to repeat this improbable series of performances like he has throughout the minors thus far, (.250 BA - .300 OBP - 150 Ks - 90+ Runs - 30+ HRs - 110+ RBI) at the MLB level, would you want him in the Twins lineup? Just YES or NO and why?
    The extra-base hits are likely what's driving this. He's been consistently among the home run leaders for his league in his career, so that right there is going to count for a lot of runs scored. I'm not sure I'd put a .300 OBP in the middle of the order. My fear is that he's going to kill a lot of rallies too. That production at the lower part of the order would be a bit more acceptable, except that he's not going to get the RBIs batting down there.

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