CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

<< Previous Article
The Week in Quotes: 3/... (03/28)
<< Previous Column
BP Unfiltered: The Bre... (03/27)
Next Column >>
BP Unfiltered: Communi... (03/29)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Expanded Horizons: Div... (03/28)

March 28, 2011

BP Unfiltered

The Twins Land Diamond

by R.J. Anderson

Whenever a team decides to trade for the rights to a Rule 5 selection, the cost is often reasonable: an organizational soldier, cash, or a live arm on the farm. The trade between the Braves and Twins brings a better return than usual.

The object of the Twins’ desire is Scott Diamond, another undrafted amateur signed by the Braves.  It’s easy to try and force a Brandon Beachy comparison, but that would be off base. Diamond is a command southpaw who lacks a knockout pitch. The Twins’ decision to trade for Diamond’s rights suggests they were uncomfortable with the idea of throwing him into the big leagues.

Heading to the minors would probably be best for Diamond. He reached Triple-A last season only to see his strikeout rate dip (from 7.9 per nine to 5.3). On the bright side, Diamond’s strong groundball and walk rates remained steady (around 50-55 percent and under three per nine, respectively). There is a sizeable difference between fooling batters in the low minors and those in the majors and that could submarine any hopes Diamond has of becoming a big league starting pitcher. John Perrotto captured a scout’s thoughts in which the fellow suggested Diamond is, at minimum, a big league left-handed specialist. That’s not a bad floor for a lottery ticket to have, but Diamond’s upside seems limited.

As Kevin Goldstein wrote, Diamond possesses the attributes (command and arsenal depth) Minnesota values higher than most organizations. Evidently so, as the Twins parted with their 2009 second round pick and 12th best prospect –according to Goldstein’s rankings—in order to secure Diamond’s rights.

Billy Bullock is a large fellow with a hot fastball that can flirt with the upper 90s. Bullock spent half of 2010 in Double-A and struck out nearly 15 batters per nine. Impressive, no doubt, but he also walked six per nine. Bullock has the physical package you look for in a late inning reliever, the question is whether his control can improve –or at least become tolerable— once his strikeout rates begin to slip as he further ascends the organizational ladder. The Braves seemingly get the pitcher with the higher upside here, albeit the one with the lower floor too.  

Rule 5 draft picks are not the typical grounds for a challenge trade, but the Braves and Twins are two of the best when it comes to developing players. If nothing else, watching how these two pitchers develop should prove interesting.

R.J. Anderson is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see R.J.'s other articles. You can contact R.J. by clicking here

Related Content:  Scott Diamond

2 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
The Week in Quotes: 3/... (03/28)
<< Previous Column
BP Unfiltered: The Bre... (03/27)
Next Column >>
BP Unfiltered: Communi... (03/29)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Expanded Horizons: Div... (03/28)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Pitching Backward: The Guy Who Makes Scherze...
Fantasy Article Fantasy Team Preview: Los Angeles Angels of ...
Premium Article Rumor Roundup: Upton and Ubaldo in One Ugly ...
Premium Article Pebble Hunting: Hank Aaron's Hypothetical Fo...
Premium Article Raising Aces: Free Agent Pitchers: The Top T...
Premium Article Moonshot: A New View of Plate Discipline, Pa...
Premium Article 2015 Prospects: Cincinnati Reds Top 10 Prosp...

MORE FROM MARCH 28, 2011
Prospectus Hit List: AL Pre-Season Hit List
Premium Article On the Beat: Braves' New World
Fantasy Article Team Injury Projection: Colorado Rockies
Fantasy Article Team Injury Projection: Seattle Mariners
Premium Article Expanded Horizons: Diversifying Doug Melvin
Fantasy Article Fantasy Beat: Value Picks at First, Third an...
The Week in Quotes: 3/21-3/27

MORE BY R.J. ANDERSON
2011-04-04 - Painting the Black: Dissecting Britton's Deb...
2011-03-31 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Five Bold Prediction...
2011-03-29 - BP Unfiltered: Unfamiliar Names in Familiar ...
2011-03-28 - BP Unfiltered: The Twins Land Diamond
2011-03-27 - BP Unfiltered: The Brewers Add Morgan
2011-03-24 - Premium Article Painting the Black: The Unwalkables
2011-03-24 - BP Unfiltered: The Slowey Situation
More...

MORE BP UNFILTERED
2011-03-29 - BP Unfiltered: Comparables and Upside
2011-03-29 - BP Unfiltered: Unfamiliar Names in Familiar ...
2011-03-29 - BP Unfiltered: Community Playing Time Foreca...
2011-03-28 - BP Unfiltered: The Twins Land Diamond
2011-03-27 - BP Unfiltered: The Brewers Add Morgan
2011-03-27 - BP Unfiltered: Opening Night in Chicago
2011-03-25 - BP Unfiltered: Depth Charts Update 3/25
More...