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BA Appy League #14 Jorge Felix #18 Stu Turner

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#1 Bob Sacamento

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 08:49 AM

Well the Twins placed 2 prospects in Baseball America's Top 20 prospects in the Appy League and they were:

14. Felix Jorge, rhp, Elizabethton (Twins)

Age: 19. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 170. Signed: Dominican Republic, 2011.
Jorge had a solid domestic debut last year in the Gulf Coast League and continued his success this summer with the fourth-highest strikeout rate (28 percent) in the league and a 4-1 K-BB ratio.


The long, athletic Jorge offers significant projection in his wiry frame and lean lower half. He has long arms and large hands that allow him to manipulate the baseball. The ball jumps out of his hand as he produces 90-94 mph fastballs and touches 96 at his best, usually sitting 90-92 with good run and sink. Jorge’s breaking ball can flash plus with slurvy action, and his changeup is developing. His control is ahead of his command.


With continued physical development, improved command and sharpened offspeed stuff, Jorge has the ceiling of a No. 3 or 4 starter. His arm-heavy delivery has effort, however, and might play better in the bullpen.


[TABLE="width: 99%"]
[TR="class: subheader-row"]
W
L
ERA
G
GS
SV
IP
H
R
ER
HR
BB
SO
AVG
[/TR]

2
2
2.95
12
12
0
61
56
26
20
2
18
72
.245

[/TABLE]


18. Stuart Turner, c, Elizabethton (Twins) Age: 21. B-T: R-R Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 220. Drafted: Mississippi, 2013 (3).


A first-team BA All-American in the spring, Turner was the second college catcher drafted in 2013, signing for $550,000. In a league full of talented but mostly unrefined players, he stood out with advanced defensive skills and a higher probability of reaching the majors.


Turner was one of the top defenders in the league because of his soft, steady hands, advanced blocking ability and plus arm with good accuracy. Mangers applauded his quick feet, quiet movements behind the plate and above-average framing ability. His defense alone should make him a solid major league backup if his bat does not progress.


Turner has the strength to hit for average power, but he has more of a line-drive swing that may keep him from reaching that power ceiling. His swing also has some stiffness and length. He’s a pull hitter and a well below-average runner.


[TABLE="width: 99%"]
[TR="class: subheader-row"]
AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
SO
SB
CS
AVG
OBP
SLG
[/TR]

121
15
32
5
0
3
19
12
22
0
1
.264
.340
.720

[/TABLE]

#2 2wins87

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 08:55 AM

I was just about to post this but you beat me to it.

The #3 or #4 ceiling for Jorge probably sounds a little disappointing to many of us that have been following him.

Turner sounds like Butera but with a hope to hit better.

#3 Bob Sacamento

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 08:57 AM

From the BA chat, looks like Lars made it through again:


CA (Seoul):
I realize he only had three starts, but did you get any feedback on Stephen Gonsalves of the E-Twins?
Clint Longenecker: A few questions on 2013 fourth rounder Stephen Gonsalves, who did not qualify. He had 3 strong starts and struck out 21 in 14 innings against 4 walks. Twins manager Ray Smith loved him and said he though Gonsalves could have been his top arm, over Felix Jorge, if he qualified. Gonsalves will continue to work on his curveball and split, which will be key for him. He would have been in contention for the list.

Lars (MN): What kind of ceiling does Felix Jorge have?
Clint Longenecker: He likely has the ceiling of a No. 3, but that is just that, a ceiling if everything clicks. A No. 4/5 is more likely, as is a bullpen arm.

#4 nicksaviking

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:06 AM

Turner? I didn't realize the Appy League was so starved for potential. Is all the love about his defense or am I missing something about his bat? Because defensive catchers with questionable bats are littered throughout every level of the minors.

#5 Bob Sacamento

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:07 AM

I was just about to post this but you beat me to it.

The #3 or #4 ceiling for Jorge probably sounds a little disappointing to many of us that have been following him.

Really? I've seen him a few times (GCL last year), he's got the stuff and can put it where he wants that's for sure. Physically, he is very lanky, as an outsider, he reminds me of former Cub RHP Juan Cruz

#6 Badsmerf

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:13 AM

That is disappointing about Jorge. How does a 19 year old that can touch 96 with good action, a plus secondary pitch only have a 3/4 ceiling? From the videos on youtube I've watched, I really like this delivery. Obviously I'm not an advanced scout and the videos can only offer so much, but this is the first I've read about heavy arm action. I've had him as my adopt a prospect for 2 years now so I've probably followed him closer than most.

We should get a better idea next year when he faces better competition. He is still pretty young and will fill out his 6'2" 170 frame as he gets older. Coming out of the DR scouts thought he was raw, but had projection. If he can continue to add some velocity to his FB and improve his change-up, I still feel his ceiling is a top of the rotation arm. I'll remain optimistic until proven otherwise.
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#7 nicksaviking

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:18 AM

Lars (MN): What kind of ceiling does Felix Jorge have?
Clint Longenecker: He likely has the ceiling of a No. 3, but that is just that, a ceiling if everything clicks. A No. 4/5 is more likely, as is a bullpen arm.


One of my bigger pet peeves with these scouting wonks. Guys with good breaking balls, 96 mph heaters and most importantly a strong K% rarely are 4/5 pitchers. They usually end up at the top of the rotation, in the bullpen or flame out completely. They are almost always boom or bust.

A 4/5 arm is generally the definitive mediocre pitcher. Low strikeouts, hopefully a competent innings eater who will simply give the team a chance to win. A 4/5 is Eades, Baxendale or Darnell.

Seriously, I think these guys just hedge their bets and think, "Well he's either going to be a stud or in the bullpen so I'll split the difference and call him a #4," which they identify as the half way point between Ace and set up man.

Edited by nicksaviking, 27 September 2013 - 09:29 AM.


#8 gunnarthor

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:46 AM

When scouts talk about #1's or 3/4 etc, they are usually using a grading scale based on stuff. A true ace - Kershaw, Santana - is pretty rare. That pitcher should have 2 plus pitches ie above avg (60 on the scouting scale). But, besides just a strong pitch, they also need advanced command and control of the zone. Santana had that perfect change up put he also had a very good fastball and his slider was at least avg if not better. He pounded the zone and his k/bb rate was very good.

A #2 starter is also pretty rare. They should also have two advanced pitches but maybe a little less control/command. Sickels pointed to guys like Cain, Greinke and Bumgarner as current #2's.

A #3 is a really good pitcher. He has one plus pitch (60 on the scale) and two avg pitches to go with it. The Jorge write up seems to suggest that he might develop one 60 pitch (breaking ball) and that his fastball seems to be at least avg. If he can develop his change up to avg, he's a #3 type. If things fall below that, he's a #4 or maybe a bullpen arm.

Defining 1-2-3-4-5 Starters - Minor League Ball

And it should also be pointed out that this isn't a perfect thing - it's a tool for scouting. Not results. Brad Radke had a better career than Josh Beckett despite Beckett usually being considered a #1 or 2 type pitcher and Radke being the definition of #3. But that article should give you a pretty good idea of what scouting services (BA, minorleague ball, Klaw, BP etc) are thinking when they say a pitcher is a backend guy or future ace.

#9 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:53 AM

That is disappointing about Jorge. How does a 19 year old that can touch 96 with good action, a plus secondary pitch only have a 3/4 ceiling? From the videos on youtube I've watched, I really like this delivery. Obviously I'm not an advanced scout and the videos can only offer so much, but this is the first I've read about heavy arm action. I've had him as my adopt a prospect for 2 years now so I've probably followed him closer than most.

We should get a better idea next year when he faces better competition. He is still pretty young and will fill out his 6'2" 170 frame as he gets older. Coming out of the DR scouts thought he was raw, but had projection. If he can continue to add some velocity to his FB and improve his change-up, I still feel his ceiling is a top of the rotation arm. I'll remain optimistic until proven otherwise.


I tend to agree. Those are some nice combinations and he should be an above average pitcher. It sounds like really needs to get one more plus pitch into his arsenal before you can call him a top of the rotation guy, but the fact that he's 19 means that's still quite possible... that and he could in theory still add a tick or two to his pitchers.

#10 nicksaviking

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 10:42 AM

When scouts talk about #1's or 3/4 etc, they are usually using a grading scale based on stuff. A true ace - Kershaw, Santana - is pretty rare. That pitcher should have 2 plus pitches ie above avg (60 on the scouting scale). But, besides just a strong pitch, they also need advanced command and control of the zone. Santana had that perfect change up put he also had a very good fastball and his slider was at least avg if not better. He pounded the zone and his k/bb rate was very good.

A #2 starter is also pretty rare. They should also have two advanced pitches but maybe a little less control/command. Sickels pointed to guys like Cain, Greinke and Bumgarner as current #2's.

A #3 is a really good pitcher. He has one plus pitch (60 on the scale) and two avg pitches to go with it. The Jorge write up seems to suggest that he might develop one 60 pitch (breaking ball) and that his fastball seems to be at least avg. If he can develop his change up to avg, he's a #3 type. If things fall below that, he's a #4 or maybe a bullpen arm.

Defining 1-2-3-4-5 Starters - Minor League Ball

And it should also be pointed out that this isn't a perfect thing - it's a tool for scouting. Not results. Brad Radke had a better career than Josh Beckett despite Beckett usually being considered a #1 or 2 type pitcher and Radke being the definition of #3. But that article should give you a pretty good idea of what scouting services (BA, minorleague ball, Klaw, BP etc) are thinking when they say a pitcher is a backend guy or future ace.


And that's great, a system is clearly needed to fairly evaluate pitchers but they should not be matching their grading scale to the anticipated rotation slot. Instead they should be ranked, say, A B C D E. Plenty of pitchers with three above average pitches are command pitchers and not overpowering. These guys tend to be 4/5 arms.

My arguement is that the more swing and miss you have, the higher you generally pitch in the rotation. Often strikeout ability goes hand in hand with a strong repertoir, but it's not necissarily a requirement. When you don't have three strong pitches and your overpowering stuff can't keep you at the top of the rotation, you usually end up in the bullpen or AAA, not the 4/5 slot.

#11 TRex

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 11:23 AM

And that's great, a system is clearly needed to fairly evaluate pitchers but they should not be matching their grading scale to the anticipated rotation slot. Instead they should be ranked, say, A B C D E. Plenty of pitchers with three above average pitches are command pitchers and not overpowering. These guys tend to be 4/5 arms.

My arguement is that the more swing and miss you have, the higher you generally pitch in the rotation. Often strikeout ability goes hand in hand with a strong repertoir, but it's not necissarily a requirement. When you don't have three strong pitches and your overpowering stuff can't keep you at the top of the rotation, you usually end up in the bullpen or AAA, not the 4/5 slot.


<with tongue firmly in cheek.

I would imagine that, since the scouting scale is probably over 100 years old, it pre-dates our fascination with 'rotation slot'... do you presume they need to change their scale because of us?

#12 Badsmerf

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 12:10 PM

When scouts talk about #1's or 3/4 etc, they are usually using a grading scale based on stuff. A true ace - Kershaw, Santana - is pretty rare. That pitcher should have 2 plus pitches ie above avg (60 on the scouting scale). But, besides just a strong pitch, they also need advanced command and control of the zone. Santana had that perfect change up put he also had a very good fastball and his slider was at least avg if not better. He pounded the zone and his k/bb rate was very good.

A #2 starter is also pretty rare. They should also have two advanced pitches but maybe a little less control/command. Sickels pointed to guys like Cain, Greinke and Bumgarner as current #2's.

A #3 is a really good pitcher. He has one plus pitch (60 on the scale) and two avg pitches to go with it. The Jorge write up seems to suggest that he might develop one 60 pitch (breaking ball) and that his fastball seems to be at least avg. If he can develop his change up to avg, he's a #3 type. If things fall below that, he's a #4 or maybe a bullpen arm.

Defining 1-2-3-4-5 Starters - Minor League Ball

And it should also be pointed out that this isn't a perfect thing - it's a tool for scouting. Not results. Brad Radke had a better career than Josh Beckett despite Beckett usually being considered a #1 or 2 type pitcher and Radke being the definition of #3. But that article should give you a pretty good idea of what scouting services (BA, minorleague ball, Klaw, BP etc) are thinking when they say a pitcher is a backend guy or future ace.


Thing is, Santana was left unprotected by the Astros when he was 20, thus allowing the Twins to grab him. If the Astros had known that he would go on to develop into a 2 (3) time Cy Young winner I highly doubt they would have done that. When prospects are young, have good stuff, have had success, and have room to fill out I have a hard time pigeon holing them to a back of the rotation arm. Especially when they have proven to miss bats: 8.7 K/9 in the DSL in 2011, 9.6 K/9 in the GCL in 2012 and 10.6 K/9 in 2013 in the Appy.

Anyway, minor quibble at this point. He has a long way to go still.

P.S. No way Matt Cain is a #2 pitcher. Dude averages 200 IP a year with an ERA of 3.35. You exclude him out of a definition of an Ace, and you are effectively narrowing the field to almost only potential HOF pitchers, which is much too narrow a definition for me (Oxtung and I had a thread about this very subject).
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#13 gunnarthor

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 12:21 PM

Thing is, Santana was left unprotected by the Astros when he was 20, thus allowing the Twins to grab him. If the Astros had known that he would go on to develop into a 2 (3) time Cy Young winner I highly doubt they would have done that. When prospects are young, have good stuff, have had success, and have room to fill out I have a hard time pigeon holing them to a back of the rotation arm. Especially when they have proven to miss bats: 8.7 K/9 in the DSL in 2011, 9.6 K/9 in the GCL in 2012 and 10.6 K/9 in 2013 in the Appy.

Anyway, minor quibble at this point. He has a long way to go still.

P.S. No way Matt Cain is a #2 pitcher. Dude averages 200 IP a year with an ERA of 3.35. You exclude him out of a definition of an Ace, and you are effectively narrowing the field to almost only potential HOF pitchers, which is much too narrow a definition for me (Oxtung and I had a thread about this very subject).


Two points
1. Santana was a surprise (although Houston was pretty good, they needed their roster for playoff teams and the rule v thing was one less year of protection). But he's the exception. Kevin Goldstein in baseball prospectus noted that Cliff Lee and Santana were about the only two aces that were really surprises. And both were lefties. But when scouting types are evaluating someone, they are trying to make future predictions. So Jorge might be a #3 but he might never get passed A+. A #3 placeholder on him is the scouts best prediction at this time. He can improve. One example would be Nick Blackburn. He went from basically nothing to a #3/4 put on him.

2. This is a scouting tool so results don't really matter much. Radke pitched a lot better than a #3 but that's what his stuff was. As Sickels comments show, the #'s work better from a scouting POV than it does in the ML where results tend to matter more. There are exceptions to everything but this is what scouts mean when they tag someone with a label. Being tagged a #2 doesn't mean that Cain isn't having a HOF career, it just means that, in scouting eyes, he lacked (at least when Sickels wrote this) something to make him a #1.

#14 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 01:03 PM

I can see the reasoning for him being a #3. His fastball is a plus and his curve and change both look like average pitches. His control is pretty good, but he'd somehow have to make his curve or change a plus to be a #2.

#15 MichiganTwins

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 02:19 PM

I thought that was a good article. It puts things into perspective. I like that being a potential #1 is hard as well.

#16 Oxtung

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 11:02 PM

Since Smurf brought it up I'll clarify my position a bit.

I differentiate between Aces and #1 starters. To me Aces are the elite of the elite, the guys that are in the conversation of "Cy Young Award" more often than not. Kershaw, Lincecum (pre-2012), Santana, etc... there are probably only 6-10 guys I consider Aces at any point in time.

On the other hand #1 starters, while they might be in the Cy Young conversation for a year or two, are not consistently dominating. This isn't a knock, there are many very good pitchers that fall into this category like Greinke and Sabathia. Without looking again I would say there are perhaps another 10-15 pitchers that fit this description. So all told there might be about 20 pitchers that are true top of the rotation pitchers IMO.

#17 howieramone1406390264

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 07:03 AM

Turner? I didn't realize the Appy League was so starved for potential. Is all the love about his defense or am I missing something about his bat? Because defensive catchers with questionable bats are littered throughout every level of the minors.

He hit well for 2 years at the JUCO level and very well in the tough SEC. Prior to the draft, they said there was disagreement on his hit tool, and a team that thinks he will hit will probably draft him. I don't see an automatic comparison to Butera, just because he's outstanding defensively. The Twins were obviously looking for catchers, this is one of 3 we took in the first 10 rounds. I think he's a fast riser, but I really don't count on 3rd round picks.