Monday afternoon news and notes Doug Gray July 8, 2013 7 Comments Both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus came out with some midseason prospect lists today. Baesball America came out with their Midseason Top 50 prospects. There were only two Reds on the list and I bet you can guess who they are. Robert Stephenson, who pitches tonight for the Dayton Dragons, comes in at 27th on the list. That is quite a jump for him as he was 56th coming into the season. I still think he should be higher. Billy Hamilton dropped down the list some, coming into the year ranking 20th overall. He is now ranked 36th on the list. Baseball Prospectus came out with a Top 50 prospects list a little more than a week ago by Jason Parks. Today they came out with another Top 50 prospects list, but this one is a Top 50 Fantasy Baseball prospects list. Certainly a different kind of list than a pure prospects list since it will ignore any and all defensive value other than a position you play and that whole on-base percentage thing doesn’t come into play since normal fantasy stats don’t include walks. With that said, plenty of prospect followers only follow prospects because of fantasy baseball purposes. Billy Hamilton comes in at #5 on this list, though he is labeled as a high risk due to his bat. Robert Stephenson comes in at #28 on the list and also carried a high risk label, though there isn’t much of a reason given. My guess is that it is simply due to his currently being in the low minors rather than the high minors. Then there is this, that isn’t entirely related to the minors: The Reds are apparently one of three finalists for the services of Jeff Francoeur. You know, the guy who has hit .228/.278/.364 over his last two seasons. He is a worse offensive player than Zack Cozart in that time frame and is no longer anywhere near a good defender (unlike Cozart). I simply can’t see what he can bring this team other than a right handed bat…. but does being right handed matter when you can’t hit? 7 Responses The Duke July 8, 2013 Why would we bring in a guy who his worse than Heisey? Doug Gray July 8, 2013 For whatever reason, this organization has some fascination with guys who will literally swing at anything thrown to the plate. Tom July 8, 2013 Not to nitpick, Doug, but the issue isn’t with the guys who swing at anything. It’s with the all the guys who swing and miss at anything thrown to the plate. And it happens a lot on the Reds. Doug Gray July 8, 2013 By and large, swinging at pitches in the zone results in high rates of contact for every one of our hitters. It is the guys who swing at the crap outside of the zone that is a problem. Not only do you swing and miss more, but when you do make contact, it is bad contact. Brandon Phillips has a higher average on balls both inside the zone and outside of the zone than Joey Votto does this year. The problem is, he swings so often at crap outside of the zone that his low average on those (while still being higher than what Votto hits on balls outside of the zone) drags his average down so much. While Votto, who hits less on strikes and less on balls out of the zone swings at so little that his average hardly suffers. *I should note that when I say average, I am only accounting for balls put in play. So only pitches that are contacted account for the averages stated above* Kevin July 8, 2013 A Free-agent Feeding Frenzy For the Free-swinging Frenchy? Fuhgetaboutit. Mac624 July 9, 2013 Not shocked we are pushing for Francoeur. The current club is an absolute mess, so why not add to it. Injuries have killed us and with almost all our minor leaguers that we would trade having very down years, its not like we can be major buyers at the trade deadline to get a bug bat or another arm. Even if we make the playoffs, its not like we can beat anyone with this current bunch. Jimmer July 9, 2013 Too bad on Francoeur. Would have made a great #2 hitter.