Notes on Domonic Smith, Nick Williams, Cody Reed and more.
Nick Williams has progressed nicely with patience and discernment at the dish this season. He has gained the ability to be selective and not miss his pitch when he sees it. He looks steady and calm in the box, exuding a quiet confidence that wasn’t always observed early in the season. From his setup in the box to taking pitches, it is very noticeable that he’s comfortable and tracking pitches well. From his approach and selectiveness, to his quick hands, he looks unbeatable at the dish right now. -Colin Young
Cody Reed used a fastball heavy arsenal when I saw him earlier this month. There’s plenty to like with Reed: he throws strikes, has some feel for pitching, can spin a curve, and uses his change up to keep hitters off balance. Unfortunately, he isn’t throwing in the mid-90’s like he did in high school — he was 89-91 with the fastball in my viewing — and his command is well behind his control. There are also body concerns: he’s listed at 6-foot-3, 245 pounds and, well, he doesn’t look a pound shy of that. He could develop into a backend starter, but my bet is that he winds up in the bullpen at some point where he may be able to get some velocity back and where his funky arm action will play up. -Brendan Gawlowski
The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.
Not a subscriber?
Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.
Notes on Raimel Tapia, Kevin Comer, Balbino Fuenmayor and more.
Raimel Tapia isn’t ever going to develop more than average game power. He has the bat speed to make up for his lack of strength, and he’ll grow into his frame more, but his swing mechanics create serious topspin on the ball, keeping it from carrying. Everything hit hard to the pull side has serious downward action. It is tough to clear the fence consistently that way. –Jeff Moore
The difference between Futures Game power and Major League power is jarring and important to remember.
Amid the ruckus of a bustling city, the biggest and brightest baseball stars, along with their minor league counterparts, gathered to show off their incredible skills. One flight, four hotel rooms, two states, and seven Ubers later, I made my way into a decked out Great American Ballpark for All-Star Workout Day. The extra flair in and around the stadium, along with the excitement of the crowd, made it easy to forget that a team 15 ½ games out of first place resides here.
Notes on every single player from the World roster
Ketel Marte, SS, Seattle Mariners – Marte had a solid if unspectacular showing during BP, spraying line drives and showing off the quick wrists that give him a chance for a plus hit tool when all is said and done. He picked up hits from both the left and right side of the plate, but unfortunately was thrown out twice; once on a caught stealing and once on a quality throw frome Michael Conforto. The upside doesn’t match some other names here, but he should be a starting middle-infielder someday, more than likely at second base.
Nick Williams, Kyle Schwarber, Lucas Giolito and others propelled Team USA to a loud victory.
A once minor event, the Futures Game has erupted into a festival of pomp and circumstance, unrivaled on the prospect landscape. Part Mardi Gras, part NFL Combine, its national exposure has grown correspondingly with the increased focus on the prospect scene.
Notes on Alex Jackson, Nick Burdi, and some unknowns that you should know.
The natural inclination with a 6-foot-10 pitcher is to see if he can start, given the way his size should be able to handle the workload; but Twins RHP Aaron Slegers is destined for a relief role and could excel in a bullpen if used properly. He’s not overpowering with his fastball, but his size allows for good extension and his slider could be a difference-maker against right-handed hitters. –Jeff Moore
With broad shoulders on a skinny frame, Jordan Holloway shows plus arm speed; though he features a hard, inverted foot landing and significant arm stab to go with his stiff delivery and drive. His fastball sat 92-94, T95 with boring action and he offered a well-below average curveball and change-up, both of which need serious refinement. He projects as an up-and-down reliever who will rely heavily on his power sinker. —Tucker Blair
Notes on Franklyn Kilome, Jorge Mateo, Willy Adames, Carson Sands and more.
Jorge Mateo continues to wreak havoc on the minor leagues, but are we certain he isn't the second coming of Billy Hamilton, whose inability to get on base has mitigated his base stealing abilities against better competition? Without any power, Mateo will have to hit close to .300 in order for his legs to really hold any value. He’s a threat when he does get on base, but those legs aren’t scaring anybody in the batter’s box. The hit tool really has to play in order for this to keep working.
Ali Sanchez is a big league bat, but he's not the Mets catcher of the future. The bat speed will ensure that he hits enough to handle left field, but his lack of arm - the same thing that limits his utility as a catcher, also limits his positional flexibility. It would be nice if he could play third base, but his arm won’t play there either. And the Mets don't need him in left field with Brandon Nimmo firmly entrenched as their leadoff hitter, making him expendable. Anybody who can hit will find a place, but he’s blocked on the Mets roster for the time being.
Notes on Raimel Tapia, Matt Purke, Duane Underwood, some new draftees, and more.
Raimel Tapia (Rockies) still shows raw center-field defense. He took an inefficient route on a high fly ball to the gap and came up two steps short, leading to a double. Two plays later he botched a routine groundball single and amplified the mistake with a sloppy, hurried recovery and wide throw to allow an extra base. These were the same kinds of issues he had in April (and May), and the lack of discernible defensive growth over the course of the season is concerning. —Wilson Karaman
Matt Purke (Nationals) displayed a three-quarters arm slot with average arm speed; delivery is much more rigid and stiff than I remembered from last season; still falling off the mound on delivery; FB sat 89-92 mph with mild arm-side run; pitch flattens out at the higher velocity band; SL hangs in the zone at 78-80 mph; well-below-average offering; 83-85 mph CH lacks any feel or fade and was telegraphed out of hand; I see an org arm at this point. —Tucker Blair
At the plate, Santana’s calling card is power, which he has to all fields. In the five games I’ve seen him play, he’s bashed three homers, including two over the right-field fence on elevated fastballs on the outer half of the plate. Unfortunately, the rest of the tools play down due to poor pitch recognition, a willingness to expand the zone, and a questionable approach. The last part was evident in a game I saw last Sunday.
On a high school mound in Florida, Chris discovered someone amazing.
Living in St. Petersburg, FL, I don't have to travel too far or look too hard to find special talent on the field. Never did I imagine, though, stumbling upon a player quite like this. He is, simply, the perfect example of #want.
Roman Quinn, CF, Philadelphia Phillies (Double-A Reading)
Quinn is a switch-hitting center fielder with 80 speed. It’s an easy burner 80 run, too; speed without effort. It plays both on the basepaths and in the field, but on both sides he’s excelling on raw speed and not polish. In the outfield he gets good jumps but his reads and jumps are below average. I still see an above-average defender because he can run down his mistakes. Quinn also has a plus arm, throwing very well for a center fielder. He has a compact, athletic build with a short upper body and short arms.
Quinn has a quiet approach at the plate, typically seeing a lot of pitches and fouling balls off. He has a strong idea of the strike zone and doesn’t expand his zone early in the count. It's a line-drive swing plane and plus bat speed. It’s a contact-oriented, front-foot swing and I see this profile playing well out of the leadoff spot—though it could also be dangerous at the bottom of the order where he could run often. This is a swing with a short and simple gather, load and stride. Quinn showed me good feel for the bat head and used the whole field, hitting balls where they were pitched and taking what the pitcher gave him. He handled velocity fine, but I do imagine these swing traits would leave him fairly vulnerable to plus spin and soft. That’s mitigated some by strong pitch-identification skills. It’s a more fluid and natural swing from the right side, but there’s a bit more leverage and pop from the left. The power grades out as well below average, which isn’t a surprise given Quinn’s size, swing plane and hitting mechanics. He’s certainly capable of punishing mistakes and should be good for 6-10 homers a year with a good amount of balls into the gaps. Bat speed and the ability to consistently barrel up balls will lead to extra-base hits. Further, Quinn’s wheels will turn outs into hits, singles into doubles and doubles into triples. He was a pleasant surprise. He’s got more bat than your typical 80 runner type. With small stature, well below-average pop and a speed-heavy profile there is some risk here. I see a role 55/above-average player as a switch-hitting, leadoff/sparkplug center fielder.