Cincinnati Reds 2012 Draft Review Doug Gray January 24, 2013 40 Comments With some guys already in Arizona and preparing for the year, it seemed like a good time to take a look back at the 2012 Reds draft. Rounds 1-5: Nick Travieso (RHP), Jesse Winker (OF), Jeff Gelalich (OF), Tanner Rahier (3B), Daniel Langfield (RHP), Jon Moscot (RHP) and Mason Felt (LHP). The Good: Jesse Winker has one of the best debuts of any draft pick in recent memory after finishing at or near the top of the Pioneer League in average, on-base percentage and OPS. Dan Langfield posted a 2.68 ERA with 54 strikeouts in 37 innings for Billings. Jon Moscot posted a 2.88 ERA with 26 strikeouts in 25 innings for Billings. The wait and see: Nick Travieso didn’t get much time in games, throwing just 21 innings with the AZL Reds. He has solid peripherals. The bad: Jeff Gelalich played with an injury and struggled to post a .714 OPS in a hitter friendly league with iffy plate discipline. Tanner Rahier struggled as he posted a .577 OPS in the hitter friendly Arizona League, though his peripherals were solid. Mason Felt never made his debut as he was recovering from Tommy John surgery and then subsequently had a terrible car accident that he is expected to recover from. Rounds 6-10: Joe Hudson (C), Beau Amaral (OF), Seth Mejias-Brean (3B), Daniel Pigott (OF) and Jeremy Kivel (RHP). The Good: Seth Mejias-Brean showed off skills he never showed in college games and was among the league leaders in several offensive categories in the Pioneer League. Beau Amaral hit .295 with good plate discipline and stole 20 of 22 bases he attempted. The wait and see: Daniel Pigott hit .308 and slugged .452, but his plate discipline was poor as he drew just 6 walks with 28 strikeouts. The bad: Warming up for the season, Joe Hudson suffered what wound up being a season ending wrist injury. Jeremy Kivel never made his debut as he is recovering from a torn ACL that he suffered earlier in the spring while in high school. Rounds 11-20: Nolan Becker (LHP), Brent Peterson (SS), Luke Moran (RHP), Ben Klimesh (RHP), Nick Routt (LHP), Jose Ortiz (C), Jackson Stephens (RHP) and Austin Muehring (RHP). The Good: Brent Peterson hit .291/.377/.383 with 15 steals for the AZL Reds. The wait and see: Luke Moran was a mixed bag as he posted a 4.75 ERA and gave up more hits than innings pitched, but walked just 9 and had 42 strikeouts in 36 innings. Jose Ortiz hit .359/.469/.538 with 8 walks and 10 strikeouts in 49 plate appearances for the AZL Reds. Jackson Stephens posted a 4.64 ERA in 21.1 innings with just one unintentional walk (3 total walks) and 22 strikeouts. The bad: Nolan Becker struggled in 13 games for Billings as he posted an 8.44 ERA with 14 walks and 20 strikeouts in 16 innings. Ben Klimesh struggled as he posted a 6.99 ERA with more hits than innings, though he also struck out 38 in 28.1 innings. Nick Routt posted a 4.76 ERA with Billings in 22.2 innings, but he walked 17 batters with 22 strikeouts as he struggled with his control. Austin Muehring posted a 7.53 ERA in 14.1 innings with 14 walks and 10 strikeouts in the Arizona League. Rounds 21-30: Jordan Remer (LHP), Avain Rachal (2B), Mike Saunders (RHP), Sean Lucas (LHP), Joey Housey (RHP), Mo Wiley (RHP) and Adam Matthews (OF). The Good: Avain Rachal hit .297/.364/.415 with 12 walks and 24 strikeouts in 132 plate appearances. Sean Lucas posted a 2.27 ERA between Billings and Dayton in 31.2 innings with just 5 walks and 29 strikeouts. Mo Wiley posted a 2.45 ERA serving as the Billings Mustangs closer with 6 walks and 26 strikeouts in 18.1 innings. Adam Matthews hit .325/.407/.470 in Arizona with 16 walks and 24 strikeouts. The wait and see: Mike Saunders posted a 3.05 ERA between Arizona and Billings in 41.1 innings while walking 19 batters and striking out 31 batters. Joey Housey posted a 6.08 ERA in 13.1 innings between Arizona and Billings, though his ERA ballooned from one poor outing as he struck out 16 and walked 4. The Bad: Jordan Remer posted a 5.50 ERA in 18 innings with 19 walks and 19 strikeouts for Billings. Rounds 31-40: Michael Salter (RHP), Richard McCaffrey (LHP) and Zach Vincej (SS). The Good:Michael Salter posted a 2.86 ERA between the AZL Reds and Billings Mustangs in 44 innings with 15 walks and 46 strikeouts. Zach Vincej hit .336/.393/.434 with Billings. The wait and see: Richard McCaffrey posted a 4.39 ERA between Arizona and Billings in 26.2 innings with 5 walks and 27 strikeouts. Overall Thoughts It is obviously far too early to actually put any kind of grade on the draft. With that said, there were several disappointing debuts from the 2012 class, a few outstanding debuts from the class, several injuries and a few intriguing guys as well. On the position player side of things Jesse Winker had the best debut of any of the draftees when taking into account his age and where he played along with his stats. I would say that Seth Mejias-Brean had the most surprising debut given that he hit all of one home run in college and then went out and hit eight in his debut with a wooden bat. On the pitching side of things I would say that Dan Langfield probably had the best debut, though several others are right there with him. The most surprising debut probably is a toss up between Sean Lucas and Mo Wiley who were later round picks who went out and dominated out of the bullpen for their respective squads. 40 Responses wanderinredsfan January 24, 2013 With all the Justin Upton rumors swirling around, it got me imagining a scenario where he would wind up in Cincy. Would a package of Hamilton, Corcino, Ryan Wright, and Ondrusek get it done? Put Upton in CF and let him bat 4th in the line-up. Move Choo to LF and make every effort to sign him next offseason, thereby securing our lead-off hitter. Then move Ludwick whenever possible, preferably before his value drops. Sure would be a potent line-up for the next few seasons. Foxbud January 24, 2013 Upton is not worth this package. I am not sure he is worth going after at all IMO. You can talk yourself to death in the winter. All this team needs right now is AAA depth in case injuries occur. So far Jocketty is doing a good job of adding some AAA depth. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 I agree. I want no part of either Upton. On paper this team is set. Still, that’s not a guarantee. Injuries and non performance could cloud things up. You have to build your team around those 2 things not happening. Walt and company have done a excellent job in that respect. They have set the table well. The rest depends on what happens on the field. This is the best team since the Big Red Machine in my opinion. Overall, the pitching staff on this team may be better. The position players are no contest. The only place we are better is CF or RF (depending on where Bruce plays). 1B is close to equal(Votto/Perez). Doug Gray January 24, 2013 The pitching staff last year had the best team ERA+ in the Majors spanning the last 10 years. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 No one is as good as Gullet was in 1975 and 1976. The rest of the staff tilts toward the current staff being better. Chapman may wind up being as good or better than Gullet. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 In 75 and 76 Gullett posted ERA+ of 149 and 117. Johnny Cueto over the last two years has been at 171 and 152. Cueto has been much better. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 Gullet was more of a true stopper to me despite the numbers. Cueto gets roughed up all along. I don’t remember Gullet getting roughed up much at all. Chapman is better in that regard(closer) than either. It remains to be seen if he can do the same as a starter. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 Gullet wasn’t nearly as good as Cueto was. Perhaps it seems he was more of a stopper because he had an incredible offense behind his good pitching? Jimmer January 24, 2013 The question I think is whether you would rather have 1 year of Choo and two years of Ludwick or 3 years of Upton (and possible multiple years of Trevor Bauer. The Reds could have put together a package to get Upton and Bauer, but chose to go with Choo/Ludwick. I’d rather have Upton/Bauer, mainly because I don’t see Ludwick putting up last years numbers ever again. Stock January 24, 2013 Assuming he is healthy Votto is without a doubt a better player than Perez was in 1975/1976. Cozart could match Concepcion’s 1975/1976 offensive production. Choo is better than Geronimo and Bruce is better than Griffey. Hannigan/Meso can’t match Bench’s 1975 production but his 1976 stats are within reach. I could even see Ludwick matching Foster’s 1975 stats and approaching his 1976 production. The only places where the 1975/1976 BRM production was clearly superior is 2B, 3B and C (1975 season). Doug Gray January 24, 2013 I don’t know if that would have done it or not, but I would do it. I have been a big fan of Upton for a while now. bore & stroke January 24, 2013 Travieso is raw and needs alot of development but I trust reds development staff considering so many home grown pitchers reds have on current roster developed in recent years. Am i crazy or does Winker seem like he could have a yonder alonzo type profile? Both are below avg athletes, slow, questions about power projection, left handed, 1B or LF, plate dicipline. Look forward to see what Langfield can do at dayton, Rahier at Billings. The Duke January 24, 2013 I’m betting Langfield goes straight to Bakersfield like Cingrani did last year. Dayton has plenty of arms (Stephenson, Guillon, Moscot, Cisco, Mugarian, and could conceivably see starts from Routt, Klimesh, or Becker) Doug Gray January 24, 2013 I think you could get that vibe from Winker, but that isn’t a bad thing. I am still convinced that if you put Alonso in a better park, he would be Sean Casey in his prime (.300/.380/.500) and very valuable. Petco simply crushes guys and Alonso went about changing his swing in order to try and avoid power because he knew Petco would take it away. Zman24 January 24, 2013 Alan, I agree with most of your analysis of the comparison between BRM and current team. Votto vs. Perez is not close. Votto much better hitter and fielder. Tony benefitted from being on such a talented team. He did not produce near those numbers when he was traded and played with less talent. His best years offensively aren’t as good as Votto’s. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 Perez was older when he was traded and his waning stats were probably more due to that than his surrounding cast(although I agree that the lessor cast would lower anyone’s stats). Perez’s peak years were around 1970 to 1976. Rose played better as he aged than any of the stars of the BRM. Morgan only had a few great years(all with the Reds). MK January 24, 2013 Not going to compare Perez and Votto, but to say Perez’s talents were diminished when he left the Reds? He was 35 (in an era where 35 was a very old big leaguer), and his batting average was .281 for Montreal career, after hitting .283 for Reds career. At age 38 drove in 105 runs and hit 25 HR for Boston. jim t January 24, 2013 Doug, just thought I’d throw this out there. Amir Garett got about 7 minutes of playing time during the Rugters/St. Johns game. They are recruiting Jermaine Lawarence very hard who who further diminsh his minutes if he signs with the Redmen. Ironically UC is recruiting Lawrence very hard as well and most speculate it is between UC,St. Johns and UNLV. I’d say there is a good chance Amir may want to commit to baseball fulltime after this year. Really like his potential. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 It has been interesting to follow along with. Basketball is his first love, or at least more important love. Never discount that. With that said, despite being a top college recruit, he was never viewed as a top NBA recruit. With diminished playing time, it could be interesting to see what he decides to do. MK January 24, 2013 Don’t know if Garrett is in the doghouse or just got beat out but he didn’t start when I watched Monday afternoon. He really got his butt chewed at one point for loafing and not playing both ends of the court. Did not like to see the lack of effort. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 Doug, The software locks up when you try to update your post. It has happened twice with me today. Alan Doug Gray January 24, 2013 I don’t have any control over that software. The only thing I could really do would be to disable it. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 It’s back working now. Correction. It doesn’t work for the same prior post. It works for other posts. Alan Horn January 24, 2013 Upton was traded to the Braves per mlbtraderumors.com. Foxbud January 24, 2013 Good. That is one story I will not miss for the rest of the winter. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 They just got much, much better. That is a scary team. tim January 24, 2013 And they only had to give up Prado and a couple bags of peanuts?? How does Arizona go from getting really good talent from Seattle to this from Atlanta??? Doug what would the Reds have offered to equal the Braves package in terms of talent?? Doug Gray January 24, 2013 Randall Delgado isn’t technically a prospect at this point, but he is a premiere arm. It wouldn’t surprise me if he were somewhere between Stephenson and Cingrani in terms of value. Prado is a tough guy to get a read on his value from a Reds standpoint because I think he is probably worth what a Todd Frazier is, but the contract situation makes it all tougher. Then the other prospects are in line with Henry Rodriguez/Kyle Lotzkar according to the grades that John Sickels gave guys. MK January 24, 2013 Doug. Thanks for those comparisons that brings it together. Not so bad for Arizona. I would be hard pressed to trade Stephenson, Frazier, H-Rod and Lotzkar in that deal. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 What if you substituted Cingrani for Stephenson? MK January 24, 2013 Not sure but would be more likely. However there are reasons I still would question. 1. Kills the payroll. 2. Creates a real whole at third base which I am not sure could be filled as well due to #1 and a lack of persons available. 3. Continues to deplete an organizational weakness of left-handed pitching and good left handed hitting. wanderinredsfan January 24, 2013 Would be a steal. Jimmer January 24, 2013 Keith Law said Delgado is a 5th starter. Doug Gray January 24, 2013 He also said Aaron Harang was a #4 starter when he was in his prime. I wrote an article last weekend about the difference in fiction and reality when it comes to pitching “profiles”. This is a perfect example of one right here. Delgado, last year, at age 22, was in line, outside of the innings pitched, was a #3/4 pitcher. Herbie January 25, 2013 I’m a fan of the move for Arizona, even if it’s just for a year I feel like people are generally undervaluing Prado. I’m not really all that scarred of Atlanta, Doug. Atleast offensively. It’s a bit of a flawed comparison, but to relate their batters’ profiles in the manner you profile starters; according to everyone’s WRC last year they wouldn’t have anyone that profiles as a #3-4 hitter, kind of run producer. In general terms though, I think they have a handful of questions on offense and any improvements have been offset by the loss of Chipper Bourne and Prado. Doug Gray January 25, 2013 As a Reds fan, I am not really scared by any teams out there. Our team is awfully good in their own right. Still, Jason Heyward and Justin Upton could both turn into monster hitters this season and if they do, that team is going to be fine offensively. Toss in 175 innings from Kris Medlen and things are starting to look real interesting down there. You do have to wonder about their infield defense though. Several question marks, though Simmons at SS could be a game changer on that side of the field. Herbie January 25, 2013 Yeah, they definitely have a lot of potential to have a fearsome offense but I’m just skeptical because every single batter on that offense is volatile, green or both. The three guys they’ve replaced were all very consistent offensively. Alan Horn January 25, 2013 The Braves are my 2nd favorite team. The team now has a lot of low contact hitters with power who strike out a lot. They are like we were last season with no apparent lead off hitter. I don’t like the balance of the team at all. They plan to play Francisco against RH pitchers. His surrounding cast is the worst mix to play him with. So many strike out a lot like he does. He needs to be mixed in with predominately contact hitters in my opinion if he is to be successful. Six players in the lineup struck out 25% of their ABs or more last season. Actually Justin Upton and Freeman were slightly less. Francisco SO 36.5%, Uggla 32.1%, Heyward 25.9 %, B J Upton 29.5%, Justin Upton 21.8% and Freeman 23.9%. That along with no true lead off hitter is not a good thing . Herbie January 25, 2013 I was trying to think of a team in recent memory with such a bad k rate and a bunch of mashers. they’re the 2010 dbacks. According to what metric you want to judge them by they’re average to mediocre. I usually don’t pay too much mind to k rates of batters if the power is there, but I think they’ll have a tough time sustaining an offense full of mashers, especially if Freeman and Simmons aren’t able to further develop and bring balance to the lineup. Alan Horn January 25, 2013 You can usually play a couple or three, but 6?? That is not a good mix. Most of the time you are depending on the HR. The Diamondbacks have alluded(since the trade) that Justin has a bad attitude/work ethic. I know B. J. does from watching him play in the minors. Work ethic is part of Francisco’s problem also. I like balance in the lineup(which the Reds should have more of this season with Stubbs gone and Choo added). If you make contact a lot of things can happen versus swinging for air.