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Prospectus - Top 11 Prospects


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Haven't subscribed for a few years and everything else is behind their wall. Goldstein seems pretty sharp and here's his take on our system:


November 20, 2009

Future Shock

Indians Top 11


by Kevin Goldstein


Five-Star Prospects

1. Carlos Santana, C


Four-Star Prospects

2. Lonnie Chisenhall, SS

3. Alex White, RHP

4. Jason Knapp, RHP

5. Nick Hagadone, LHP


Three-Star Prospects

6. Hector Rondon, RHP

7. Lou Marson, C

8. Jason Kipnis, OF/2B

9. Carlos Carrasco, RHP

10. Michael Brantley, OF

11. Zach Putnam, RHP


Four More:


12. Jess Todd, RHP: Todd is a short, squat reliever acquired from the Cardinals, and one who reached the big leagues in short order, but his ceiling is probably as a seventh-, maybe eighth-inning set-up man.


13. Nick Weglarz, OF: Two years of non-performance have dropped him significantly, as a ton of walks can only get you so far. As a first baseman or left fielder, Weglarz needs to show more.


14. T.J. House, LHP: He was an over-slot lefty from 2008 who showed solid stuff in his full-season debut; he’s a good breakout candidate.


15. Jason Donald, SS: He's always been a bit overrated, and profiles best as a nice utility type.


1. Carlos Santana, C

DOB: 4/8/86

Height/Weight: 5-11/190

Bats/Throws: S/R

Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2004 (Dodgers)

2009 Stats: .290/.423/.530 at Double-A (130 G)


Last Year’s Ranking: 2


Year in Review: One of the top catching prospects in the game, Santana only helped his reputation with a monster showing in his first year at the upper levels.


The Good: Santana's bat is so special that if he was a first-base prospect, he'd still be elite. His approach is big league-ready, as he never swings at a bad pitch. As one scout put it, "When he does finally swing, special things tend to happen." His power is plus to plus-plus to all fields, and for a player with his strength, he maintains an outstanding contact rate. He's a solid defender with above-average arm strength.


The Bad: Santana still has a lot of work to do in the areas of catching that are difficult to measure on the stat sheet. He needs to call a better game, improve his game management, and improve his English-language skills in order to communicate better with pitchers and coaches. His release is a bit long, which makes him easier to run on. His intensity works against him at times, as his tendency to overreact to calls and stare down umps can grate, even on his own teammates.


Ephemera: The wide-bodied Santana played two games at second base in the Gulf Coast League during the 2005 Gulf Coast League season, and a third game there as late as 2008 at High-A Inland Empire. While he played five positions as a Dodger, he's only caught since coming to Cleveland.


Perfect World Projection: All of the tools and skills are there for Santana to be a perennial All-Star.


Path to the Big Leagues: Lou Marson will start ahead of Santana on the organizational depth chart, but that won't last long.


Timetable: Santana will begin the year at Triple-A, but he should reach the majors at some point during the second half of the 2010 season. New manager Manny Acta, as well as the recently hired Sandy Alomar Jr., are both Latin American-born players who turned into leaders, and they could prove to be essential mentors for Santana.


2. Lonnie Chisenhall, 3B

DOB: 10/4/88

Height/Weight: 6-1/200

Bats/Throws: L/R

Drafted/Signed: 1st round, 2008, Pitt CC (NC)

2009 Stats:.276/.346/.492 at High-A (99 G); .183/.238/.387 at Double-A (24 G)


Last Year’s Ranking: 10





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I don't think the national types will be too kind to us this year, I'm looking forward to Lastoria's top thousand or so prospect list.


And as much heat as Shapiro takes, at least we have a stocked farm system. There are some impact names in that list and it doesn't even include guys like Kelvin De La Cruz...or LaPorta, Perez, Sipp etc that are in the bigs. Could be worse.

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  • 1 month later...

And BA's top prospects came out a few days ago.


1. Carlos Santana, c

2. Lonnie Chisenhall, 3b

3. Nick Hagadone, lhp

4. Jason Knapp, rhp

5. Michael Brantley, of

6. Nick Weglarz, of

7. Hector Rondon, rhp

8. Carlos Carrasco, rhp

9. Alex White, rhp

10. Jason Kipnis, 2b/of


Best Hitter for Average - Michael Brantley

Best Power Hitter - Nick Weglarz

Best Strike-Zone Discipline - Carlos Santana

Fastest Baserunner - Delvi Cid

Best Athlete - Michael Brantley

Best Fastball - Nick Hagadone

Best Curveball - Alexander Perez

Best Slider - Nick Hagadone

Best Changeup - Carlos Carrasco

Best Control - Hector Rondon

Best Defensive Catcher - Carlos Santana

Best Defensive Infielder - Jason Donald

Best Infield Arm - Carlos Rivero

Best Defensive Outfielder - Jordan Henry

Best Outfield Arm - Matt Brown





One thing you notice - on the Prospectus list too - is that the draft might finally be becoming a strength for us. Chisenhall is a true impact bat, and there's differing opinions on White, but he seems like a much better prospect than the Sowers..es and Huffs of the world. TJ House and Eric Berger are looking like good starting pitchers, too. Let's hope with a top-5 pick this year we keep it up.


And here's Paul from the Diatribe with some highlights from the subscriber-portion of BA's rank.


On the BA list, there were not too many surprises among the Top 10 when you realize that BA has always been higher on upside (read Alex White at #9 without having thrown a pitch as a professional) and what “could be” than what really is. The most exciting news, by far, is that the BA folks are VERY high on both Santana (#1) and Chisenhall (#2), with author Ben Badler saying later in the subsequent chat that he sees Santana as the second best catching prospect in MLB (behind only the Giants’ Buster Posey, the 5th overall pick in the 2008 draft), and sees The Chiz as the second best 3B prospect in MLB (behind only the Pirates’ Pedro Alvarez, the 2nd overall pick in the 2008 draft). Seeing as how the team is just waiting to promote Santana to the parent club (probably sometime in June) and figure to have a void at 3B after 2010, when Peralta’s option isn’t picked up, they’re some nice prospects to dream on.


Past those two exceptional positional prospects, BA ranks the two power arms netted this summer (Nick Hagadone and Jason Knapp) as #3 and #4, injury-history considered, which is likely more of an indication of these two players having high ceilings as much as anything else. There’s a lot of good stuff in the list, but beyond those top 4, I’m not going to look too deeply into the rankings as that’s not generally my area of expertise and because, frankly, much of the ranking and the information on the Tribe top prospects comes as nothing too new as it is covered so extensively by Tony Lastoria on a nearly everyday basis.


And a less exciting bit on Mitch Talbot...


On the topic of the player who came to Cleveland in exchange for ShopVac, Harry Pavlidis at THT has a piece titled “Pitching Prospects who could be Keepers” looking for arms that don’t immediately jump off of the page as stud prospects, but instead who are “strike-throwing, bat-missing, groundball pitchers who don't give-up home runs”. After a brief explanation of how he fine-tuned the criteria, he came up with 29 pitchers who exceeded the minimums that he was looking for and among them was a name that may just “Unleash the Fury”:


Talbot had a cup of coffee with the Rays in 2008, and was sent to Cleveland to complete the Kelly Shoppach deal over the winter. Talbot projects fairly well and has one of the best lines of this group of 29. We'll see how that translates, but Indians fans should pay attention to Talbot this March.


I still hold my irrational contempt for Talbot, mainly because of his status as being out of options and his lack of MLB experience (which are wildly related), but it’s an interesting counterpoint to those (ahem…me) who were so quick to dismiss Talbot. My irrational contempt for all things related to Mitch Talbot has less to do however, with Talbot and more to do with something I hope to explain once I ever get around to posting the third part of the “Forward Thinking” series (remember that…oh, 2 months ago) on the rotation. As a little appetizer, trust me that part of it has to do with the players who show up as the Indians 7th and 8th best prospects (as determined by Baseball America this week) in Hector Rondon and Carlos Carrasco and how I'd prefer to see innings go to them over the likes of Talbot and even Sowers and Ambriz, all three of whom are out of options and figure to be on a long MLB leash, or even in the rotation coming out of Goodyear, as Castrovince imagines.



Link to Talbot article...


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