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Michael Wacha Cardinals

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#1 Riverbrian

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 11:01 PM

I had no idea who this kid is but I watched him throw three spring training innings and Wow... Simple Wow... He blew me away.

i know it's only three innings and its only ST but my goodness... This kid has out of this world like stuff... I also watched Bundy throw a couple of innings... He was good... Wacha was much much more.

That stuff is legit... He won't be in the minors long. If you get a chance to check him out... Do so... Wow... Hard fastball... Sick change up and a breaking pitch that freezes the hitter.

#2 nicksaviking

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 11:20 PM

Yeah the Cardinals promoted him to AA in pretty quick order last year. He was in the tier of college pitchers last year that was generally thought of just below Appel, Gausman and Zimmer. St. Louis sure has been able to identify quality pitching as of late.

#3 The Wise One

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 11:32 PM

I hope this is another case where good scouting of talent shows that drafting players to develop that it is more about their skills than the numbers.

#4 Riverbrian

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 12:36 AM

If Appel... Gausman and Zimmerman are better... I don't know what to say. I know it was just three spring training innings but that stuff doesn't lie.

#5 Riverbrian

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 05:55 AM

I miss some on occasion but I gotta get a couple of points for this February call.
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#6 Shane Wahl

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 07:34 AM

I was just thinking about your comments about him, and that was after his start before this last one. Well-played.

#7 old nurse

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 01:08 PM

For giggles
Scouting Report: Michael Wacha (RHP) | Baseball Prospect Nation

2 pitches are good enough for now being that they are good enough pitches. I don't know if that can sustain a career but at this point it is insignificant. 2 more wins followed by 4 more is all the Cardinals are worried about

#8 cmb0252

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 01:11 PM

Keith Law on Wacha before the 2012 draft:Posted Image
[FONT=Verdana][COLOR=#333333]
Earlier this season Wacha seemed like a lock to go in the top 10, but doubts about his breaking ball have slid him down to the second tier of college starters. Wacha has most of the elements you'd want in a starting pitcher -- above-average fastball at 90-95, an out pitch in the plus changeup, command, control and a track record of durability.[/COLOR]
[COLOR=#333333]What he does not have is an average third pitch, with a below-average slider in the low 80s lacking any kind of tilt or break. Wacha's arm is quick and he has no trouble repeating his clean delivery, so the question is whether he has the laxity in his wrist to put some spin on a slider, curveball or even a good cutter, raising his ceiling from that of a No. 3 or No. 4 to at least a solid No. 2.[/COLOR]
[/FONT]

#9 Oldgoat_MN

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 01:45 PM

Riverbrian, I really appreciate you and your posts.
That said, we all know that as a Super Moderator you are given certain insights to the future. To rub them in our face later is over the top.

Can you get a job working for the Twins?
They could use your Super Moderator insights!

I'm on a whiskey diet. I've lost 3 days already.


#10 Riverbrian

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 08:10 PM

The Twins never call me... I've been waiting and beginning to think it won't happen.
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#11 kab21

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 09:18 PM

It has really been an incredible year for rookies and other almost rookies. Harvey was awesome (sadly), Fernandez, Wacha, Miller, Cole and probably a couple of others to watch next season like Gray, Cingrani and Alex Wood.

#12 nicksaviking

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 07:53 AM

I miss some on occasion but I gotta get a couple of points for this February call.


I'll give you some points, but is it OK if we split them with John Mozeliak and the Cardinals scouting department? I'm thinking a 60/40 take in your favor.

#13 ashburyjohn

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 10:24 AM

I hope this is another case where good scouting of talent shows that drafting players to develop that it is more about their skills than the numbers.


I am wondering if it is more coaching than drafting that has been the Twins downfall.

#14 nicksaviking

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 11:22 AM

I am wondering if it is more coaching than drafting that has been the Twins downfall.


If it is, is it even possible to find out without completely dismanteling one of those departments and then hoping they picked the right one as the culprit?

#15 Riverbrian

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 12:40 PM

We have no idea what the Twins thought of Wacha so it's tough to hang the Twins for the Cards drafting this guy. Byron Buxton was our first round pick for that year.

I don't believe that Wacha was going over Buxton. As for the Cards developing Wacha. If they did... It happened quickly. What I saw in Spring Training was soon after being drafted and all reports are that he hit the ground running in 2012.

He moved up the Farm Ladder in quick time after being drafted.

I think we are looking at a case of some teams missing on him for some reason so he fell to the Cards. The Twins with the 2nd pick overall and Byron Buxton drafted... were not one of those teams that missed... In my opinion.
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#16 The Wise One

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 12:44 PM

I am wondering if it is more coaching than drafting that has been the Twins downfall.


What you can't teach is consistency and a high speed fastball. If Twins pitchers could consistently hit their spots and only made only an occasional mistake pitch the results would be that much different. The coach can coach the mechanics and teach the how to pitch, it is on the pitcher to do it. So, with that being said is the problem with the Twins they throw poor pitch selection or they throw poorly enough times to let the batter wait for a poorly thrown pitch? How many times did it look like the pitch wasn't what the pitcher intended? Is that the coaching or the pitcher?

#17 ashburyjohn

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 06:45 PM

I agree the fastball is only subject to minor tweaks for additional speed, but consistency seems like one of the more coachable things. Sure, it's up to the pitcher to perform the mechanics the coach has taught; but with enough pupils you get an idea of whether the coach is effective or not. I just look at the Cardinals and their repeated ability to find gems outside of the top-20 draft picks, and question whether the key is actually the "find" step that they do so much better than everyone else, or if it's getting the potential out of what they do pick.

#18 Riverbrian

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:06 PM

I agree the fastball is only subject to minor tweaks for additional speed, but consistency seems like one of the more coachable things. Sure, it's up to the pitcher to perform the mechanics the coach has taught; but with enough pupils you get an idea of whether the coach is effective or not. I just look at the Cardinals and their repeated ability to find gems outside of the top-20 draft picks, and question whether the key is actually the "find" step that they do so much better than everyone else, or if it's getting the potential out of what they do pick.


Probably a little of both... No doubt tho... The Cards have got it going on.
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#19 Guest_USAFChief_*

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 10:57 PM

The thing that gets me is, it's not just Wacha.

Lynn, age 26, 8.8 K/9
Miller, 22, 8.8
Rosenthal, 23, 12.9
Siegrist, 23, 11.3
Garcia (injured), 26, 7.0
Lyons, 25, 7.3
Martinez, 21, 7.6

they seem to have figured out a way to get big arms into their system, and get em to the show in a hurry, whatever it is.

#20 The Wise One

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 05:16 AM

There are two things to note what the Cardinals are doing. One is that they are going after very good fastballs. They have plus speed and movement with the ability to vary it enough to not get killed. Second is pitch to contact. They don't walk many. The difference is the Twins went after a sinkerball type whereas the Cardinals went after the fastball type. Conventional wisdom says a starting pitcher should have command of 3 pitches. Wacha is fastball change. Miller is a fast and faster FB with the occasional change and curve.

#21 The Wise One

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 05:26 AM

I agree the fastball is only subject to minor tweaks for additional speed, but consistency seems like one of the more coachable things. Sure, it's up to the pitcher to perform the mechanics the coach has taught; but with enough pupils you get an idea of whether the coach is effective or not. I just look at the Cardinals and their repeated ability to find gems outside of the top-20 draft picks, and question whether the key is actually the "find" step that they do so much better than everyone else, or if it's getting the potential out of what they do pick.


Wacha and Miller were slot 19 in the first round. Garcia was out of hs taken late in the draft. I am only guessing but he may have told scouts he was going to college. The Cards convinced him otherwise and the rest is history. There are a lot of one year very successful pitchers on the Cardinals this year. Time will tell if it is sustainable.

#22 biggentleben

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 06:16 PM

It has really been an incredible year for rookies and other almost rookies. Harvey was awesome (sadly), Fernandez, Wacha, Miller, Cole and probably a couple of others to watch next season like Gray, Cingrani and Alex Wood.


You left out my favorite - Julio Teheran. ;)
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#23 old nurse

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 07:54 PM

Friday shall prove to be interesting as this will be the second time the Dodgers see Wacha. He really did not start that many games so batters are not that familiar with him. What he does is very good, but I don't know if it will stand up over time. Baseball is that way. Hole in one's game will get exposed over time.
To AshburyJohn. The GM of the Cards has been involved in scouting then GM for quite some time. Micro analysis of the game which should predate sabr, gives you ideas on what you think will work. You see what works when it is working in your home field and you go from there. For the Cards they focus on fastball.
How Shelby Miller was available as a 19th position in the round pick rather than earlier , Baseball Prospectus | Future Shock: Scouting Report: Shelby Miller
Sometimes it is not really a find in the later rounds rather it is determination by the drafting club. The slot system in place now changes that somewhat.

#24 kab21

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 08:35 AM

Miller was a top ten talent and he fell due to signability. The Cardinals simply were the team that made the choice to go way overslot to get him. That isn't really a scouting find but rather a popular strategy employed by 8-10 teams. Unfortunately the Twins avoided that strategy for the most part.