Friday afternoon news and notes Doug Gray March 22, 2013 26 Comments Jason Parks has up the Reds top 10 Prospects at Baseball Prospectus. That marks the final Reds prospect list that will be worth watching of the “offseason”. Parks is known to be a “ceiling” guy for the most part, and his list has the usual names. Here is his top 10. CF Billy Hamilton RHP Robert Stephenson LHP Tony Cingrani RHP Daniel Corcino RHP Nick Travieso LHP Ismael Guillon OF Jesse Winker OF Jonathan Reynoso RHP Kyle Lotzkar RHP Dan Langfield A bunch of pitchers and three outfielders crack the list. There really are no surprises on the list with the Top 5 guys being the same group as everyone else from the other prospectors (Baseball America, John Sickels, Myself). To see the scouting reports you must be a subscriber, but if you are, go check it out. Now that we have all of the big Top 10’s, here are the players who made an appearance between the lists from Baseball America, John Sickels, Baseball Prospectus and my list listed in order of most points (on a 1-10 scale for each list): Player BA JS BP RML Total Billy Hamilton 10 10 10 10 40 Robert Stephenson 9 9 9 9 36 Tony Cingrani 8 8 8 5 29 Daniel Corcino 7 7 7 8 29 Nick Travieso 6 5 6 7 24 Jesse Winker 5 6 4 6 21 Kyle Lotzkar 1 4 2 4 11 Ismael Guillon 4 1 5 0 10 Jonathan Reynoso 3 0 3 0 6 Dan Langfield 2 3 1 0 6 Henry Rodriguez 0 2 0 3 5 Yorman Rodriguez 0 0 0 2 2 Tanner Rahier 0 0 0 1 1 The Reds reassigned Armando Galarraga to minor league camp today. Expect him to be starting for the Bats in two weeks when the season starts. A likely reliever for Louisville, Mark Prior, has an article up on Reds.com about his performance Thursday. As I noted on March 1st when he signed, his stuff is still good enough to work in the Major Leagues when it is on the top of it’s game. Consistency and control have been problems for him since his shoulder surgery back in 2006. If you read the Reds.com article linked above, you can see that his shoulder was damaged in multiple ways when he had it repaired, so coming back for him was even tougher than normal shoulder injuries which are notoriously difficult to come back from. 26 Responses redsfannorth March 22, 2013 I know that the conversation about what is ture #1 is lengthy and diverse, but what more does Stephenson need to do for his potential outcome to be a #1? I think/hope that by the end of this season, he has continued to excel and is in that potential #1 conversation. Doug Gray March 22, 2013 I don’t have a clue what it takes to have a “#1 ceiling” at this point. If Stephenson doesn’t have it, I can’t figure out who does. Starter who can throw up to 100 MPH with a very strong breaking ball and a good change up? MK March 22, 2013 Why not #1. Does Stephenson have one skill set that is absolutely better than every other player in the organization? In other words the fastest fastball, the best curve ball etc. Although maybe the best total package but not sure the best in any category. Plus maybe have success above Low A. On the other hand Hamilton might have the greatest speed in all of the minors, not just the Reds. Plus he has had success at AA. He deserves to be #1 at this point. redsfannorth March 22, 2013 Sorry MK, I meant a #1 starter inot #1 on the list. And it is future potential after all – I think he has all of the ingredients to be a #1 starter on a first division team. Proving it at a higher level will wake up the rest of the prospect world. Lots of the gurus has said he could be much, much higher on lists next year. MK March 22, 2013 You are correct on that one. I think they always defined Homer as a #1 and Stephenson has as much or more than Homer at the same point. fromcubawithluv March 22, 2013 Now that Lotzker is officially a reliever would you have ranked him lower? If so, curious how much lower. Doug Gray March 22, 2013 Absolutely. I would probably have had him in the teens somewhere. 13-16 sounds about right. MK March 22, 2013 Chapman to the pen. It is official. Justin March 23, 2013 I’m thinking Chapman moving back to the bullpen could have as much to do with this glut of starting pitchers we have moving up as anything. I’d rather have Chapman as a closer and one of these guys break out Cueto style than have Chapman starting and that same prospect toiling in the minors. redsfannorth March 23, 2013 If that is the thinking of the Front Office, then they wasted a lot of money on Broxton. As the article from a few days ago suggested, make a plan and stick with it. We may be better off with Leake/Corcino/CIngrani starting in the 5th spot and Chapman closing from a total talent perspective, but not ever trying Chapman as a starter is a massive waste of talent in my opinion. I have said it on this board before – if we dont think he is a starter, then trade him for an impact player, because if another team values him as a starter his value would be VERY high. Not nearly as high as a closer. 44reds March 23, 2013 I agree that on paper not starting Chapman is a dumb decision. I continue to be frustrated with the organization’s inability to think in a modern way. However, the one thing that seems to be overlooked by many is that Chapman may not have the mental package to handle this transition, particularly if he was against the move. The transition to starter would no doubt be fraught with challenges and lessons, a proposition that is scary for an immature, “complex” player that didn’t want to make the transition in the first place. From this perspective, keeping him a closer might be the right move. The greater crime, as many have pointed out, is that the “right hand” of the Reds seems to have no idea what the “left hand” is doing. We paid Broxton closer money, while having a cheaper, younger, arguably better set-up man in Hoover. This is further compounded by Ondrusek’s inexplicable contract. Now we have to contemplate sending one of our top 3 relievers to AAA because he may not have a spot. These are inexcusable sins for a small market team. RobL March 23, 2013 While Broxton is receiving closer money, his contract is not bad. If he puts up a good season, the reds could flip him to a team in need of a closer. Things are not set in stone. And while people complain about the money being spent, they should be glad that they are actually spending money. The reds have no needs that need to be addressed, and have depth at AAA. MK March 23, 2013 Since for the most part Chapman’s contract is up after 2014 (player option for $5 million in 2015) does keeping him in the pen give the Reds a better shot at resigning him for less and keeping him longer? wanderinredsfan March 23, 2013 Not sure about your timeline. I thought Chapman was under control through 2016. BTW, Just stumbled upon the Reds’ game today on a Texas Fox affiliate through DirectTV. Love Latos’ arm slot this spring; way more over the top than I ever recall. MK March 23, 2013 Boy Votto really put a charge in that hanger didn’t he? Doug Gray March 24, 2013 I just saw a picture where the ball supposedly landed. If that picture is accurate, that baseball went 500 feet. Krozley March 24, 2013 I think once he becomes arbitration eligible, the remainder of his contract becomes a bonus and he is then under control for 3 more years with the contract amounts negotiated. Papelbon got over $6MM his first year of arb. a few years ago, then went $9 and then $12. His free agent contract then was 4 years $50MM ($12.5 a year). i would think Chapman would be on a similar path with another good year as closer. As a starter, he may have been more of a $4M, $8M, $12M arb path, but then have a much bigger FA deal waiting for him, provided he succeeded to expectations. MK March 23, 2013 Accoring to MLBTradeRumors.com – Infielder/outfielder Cody Puckett has been traded from the Reds, with whom he has spent his entire career, to the White Sox, Puckett himself tweeted. In return, the Reds will receive a player to be named later. hunr4redsoct March 23, 2013 I wish Cody luck in his fresh start, I met him and his family at the hotel pool last week in Goodyear. The Duke March 24, 2013 …or cash MK March 24, 2013 Nice Enquirer article on Derrick Robinson. Looks like a nice addition to the organizations depth. Great speed, great defense, switch hitter. Could be a great bench player in the future and a Plan B for 2014 if Billy’s bat doesn’t come along this season. Will be great speed at the top of the Louisville line-up. Billy then Derrick, could be 200+ steals between them. Probably the reason Puckett is now part of the Sox. http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20130323/SPT04/303230076/Reds-Robinson-turning-heads Doug Gray March 24, 2013 I really hope he isn’t starting in Louisville. They have a DH spot, use it and work him in, but he is a guy with 26 extra base hits between the Texas and Pacific Coast Leagues in his last two full seasons. I think there is a chance he could be a future 5th outfield because he can run, play defense and he seems to get the strikezone (at least in the past, his spring has him with 12 strikeouts and 1 walk in 43 plate appearances…. and as they say “that ain’t good”). Still, he shouldn’t start over any of the Billy Hamilton, Felix Perez, Ryan LaMarre, Bryson Smith, Donald Lutz, Josh Fellhauer or Steve Selsky (assuming he heads to AA) group. MK March 24, 2013 As I see it if the Reds had to recall an outfielder form the minors, at least early in the season he would be the guy. I guess if they considered Felix Perez, Ryan LaMarre, Josh Fellhauer and Steve Selsky rated ahead of him they would be getting the spring training big league at bats, and big league per diem Robinson wouldn’t be getting them. I know they purged the organization of several outfielders at the end of spring training last year. That could happen again and maybe started with Puckett. Doug Gray March 24, 2013 I don’t think Selsky or LaMarre would do anything better than Robinson at this point, and Selsky doesn’t have the defensive chops that Robinson does either. But all are better hitters than Robinson has shown to be in the past and outside of Selsky, the rest of that group can also play all three spots in the outfield. As I said, Robinson may have a MLB future, but I also just can’t make a justification to start him over any of those guys. Looking at AAA, he would have to start over Hamilton (no chance), Perez (who clearly outhit him at the AAA level in a much more pitcher friendly league last season), Phipps (I will listen to that one, though I think both are guys who should be AAA #4 types because there are too many warts on each guys ledger), LaMarre (he is similar to Robinson, but with more power to go with it). I just don’t know where he fits in there unless they send LaMarre back to AA, which would send Selsky back to A+, and still leave AA’s outfield very crowded for players who all deserve playing time. peppe March 24, 2013 Mesoraco No 2 Catcher MK March 24, 2013 Bad news about Mark Berry. Kind of a downer for the beginning of a potential championship season.