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Chat: Brendan Gawlowski

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Wednesday July 13, 2016 3:00 PM ET chat session with Brendan Gawlowski.

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Brendan is a member of our prospect team, covering the International and Northwest Leagues.

Brendan Gawlowski: Hey everyone, sorry I'm running a little late. Lets talk baseball, prospects, Arsenal, or whatever.

sdsuphilip (Philip): What do you consider the Mariners top 5? Guessing Lewis at 1?

Brendan Gawlowski: I'd actually take O'Neill in the top spot, with Lewis not that far behind. It's a strong top two, and resurgent seasons from Peterson, Jackson, and Gohara have really helped turn the system around. Top five: O'Neill, Lewis, D. Jackson, A. Jackson, Gohara. Could make a good case for DJ in the fifth spot.

Steve (Chicago): Give us some Dylan Cease hype. Have you caught him on a start yet?

Brendan Gawlowski: I did; article coming later this week.

JM (CT): Please project Bradley Zimmer's expected stats as a major leaguer. Think he will arrive next season?

Brendan Gawlowski: He should be ready in some capacity next year. I'm curious to see if he starts hitting better against lefties; if he doesn't, that really changes his future outlook. I'm not punting on your question, he still has that .280-20-30 upside, but he won't reach it if he's a liability against LHP's.

Cal Guy (Cal): Hi Brendan, What is your assessment of the Giants' 2016 draftees on the S-K team, especially the trio of OF (Reynolds, Quinn and Brusa) and Krook?

Brendan Gawlowski: You know, I haven't seen SK yet. I'll have a bunch on them when they roll through Everett. I did see Krook make a start this spring while he was at Oregon, and I really like the value SF got. He could have a 70 curve and a 60 fastball from the left side: that kind of guy usually doesn't last to the fourth round.

Marctacoma (Old School): Who are the best NWL prospects you've seen this year? Who's really surprised you?

Brendan Gawlowski: Lewis and Cease are the two best so far. My favorite is an outfielder in the Cubs system named Chris Pieters. He's a converted pitcher, and while he's raw as hell on the bases and in the field, he has a smooth stroke and some pop. I'll certainly be following.

For a bad surprise, Seattle's fourth round pick Thomas Burrows is sitting well below the velocity he hit in college.

username49 (Ohio): With the promotions of Mejia and Kreiger, is Lynchburg one of the most talented teams in the minors? Their pitching is a little weak outside of Sheffield, but that lineup 1-9 seems to be filled with upside.

Brendan Gawlowski: Yeah they're super fun. Honestly, they may not get a *ton* of value out of the crop, but there's legitimate interest up and down the lineup.

Jay (Azul, NM): Dalton Pompey just recently came off of the minor league DL. If he hits the ground running, do you see a quick promotion for him to help fill in while Joey Bats is out?

Brendan Gawlowski: With the caveat that I don't follow Toronto's system super closely and that Pompey is a bit off my radar now that he's no longer prospect eligible, this looks like a situation where Carrera's performance will dictate Pompey's role.

Ethan (Colorado): What kind of major league player do you expect David Dahl to become?

Brendan Gawlowski: First division regular in center field.

Marctacoma (Old School): Project both Arsenal and Tottenham's point total for the 16-17 season, if you would.

Brendan Gawlowski: 75 and 71 respectively.

nb (philly): Hey Brandan - Thanks for the chat. Chances are nobody has had a tougher road to the NWL than Gustavo Cabrera. He's still just 20 but had a terrible injury. Would you still consider him a prospect? Thanks!

Brendan Gawlowski: Still a prospect, yes, although I was surprised with how aggressive the Giants were with his initial assignment this year. For those of you who don't know about his backstory, Andrew Baggarly wrote a tremendous feature on him: http://www.mercurynews.com/giants/ci_29688837/san-francisco-giants-top-prospect-starting-over

Eric (Seattle): Thoughts on Kyle Lewis'Potential? How good can he be?

Brendan Gawlowski: Easily a big leaguer, very likely a starter, potentially a first division regular. I'll have a report on him soon, and I'd go 50/60 realistic/OFP. Maybe even 55/60.

sdsuphilip (San Diego): You a believer in the guy who spells his last name Paddack?

Brendan Gawlowski: Yep.

Keith (Farmington, CT): Thanks Brendan. Should we be concerned about Eloy Jimenez's walk rate, or just blown away by his overall performance at 19 in Low A?

Brendan Gawlowski: The latter. He may never walk a lot but he doesn't have to.

Marctacoma (Old School): Fill in the blanks: Over the past 5 years, college baseball talent has gotten _____. Over the past 5 years, the gap between a major college conference and the Northwest League has _____.

Brendan Gawlowski: Static or maybe slightly better due to smarter training; grown. Several teams with NWL affiliates send some really interesting kids out here.

fawkesmulder (Zzyzx): 2 Questions: First of all, if the BP top 50 list was written AFTER the Futures game, I assume Eloy Jimenez would have made an even more drastic jump? How high? I feel I gotta treat him like a t10 prospect, with all arrows pointing up. Second of all, how impressive was Chih-Wei Hu in the Futures game? He looked MLB ready with a lot of movement on his pitches. Same thing for Carson Fulmer.

Brendan Gawlowski: I'd hope the list wouldn't change too much after just one game. That said, I was driving the Eloy bus. I had him just outside the top ten on my personal list.

Steve (Philly): You had a very favorable OFP on Luiz Gohara last year. Has your opinion of him changed much based on what you've seen or heard?

Brendan Gawlowski: If anything, I feel better about his ability to reach his ceiling. The arm strength is there, and he flashes the kind of offspeed that could get him to the big leagues as a starter, but he has a really laid back personality and hasn't always taken his conditioning or preparation seriously, and that's not a great sign. He's been better in that regard this season, and in the one game I saw of his, he threw the ball really well.

bkobs (Boston): What type of prospect is Dawel Lugo? He's been on fire the last 2 weeks.

Brendan Gawlowski: I'm the low man on him. I don't think he stays at short, and I don't like his approach. He has his supporters though, and some very good evaluators see a big league regular; maybe it's my problem, not his.

James (CA): Best pitching prospect in the minor leagues?

Brendan Gawlowski: I like Reyes.

Bob (Duluth, MN): Even Blind Willie McTell can see Dylan Cozens is putting up monster counting stats so far this year in AA. Why isn't he in LeHigh already in your opinion? Does he still have red flags attached to his approach, hole is swing, something like that?

Brendan Gawlowski: Lot of swing and miss in his game, and there always will be. If I had to guess, I'd say the Phils are waiting until they know he won't get eaten alive by the good offspeed he'll see in Triple-A.

Hub (Cali): Who are the short season guys you're most interested in this year? Dermis Garcia for example is off to a hot power start and is one guy I'm liking.

Brendan Gawlowski: Three true outcomes extraordinaire! I won't get to physically see him this year, but I'm real interested to observe how Will Benson fairs over the rest of the year. Less his stats - who cares in the AZL - than whether he starts taking better at bats and starts making more contact.

Chilly (The road): Eloy Jimenez has gotten a lot of pub recently, and rightfully so in my mind. Offensively, do you think he can be an above average player? Something in the mold of a left field version of Adam Jones perhaps?

Brendan Gawlowski: Could have more power, won't have Adam's legs. I think I get what you're going for in the high dingers-few walks sense though, and yes, it will be kind of like that.

Eric (Philly): Next BIG prospect nobody is talking about?

Brendan Gawlowski: Jeren Kendall.

Frank (LA): If eligible where would Lourdes Gourriel Jr. rank in the prospect rankings?

Brendan Gawlowski: I really don't have my ear on Cuban players or July 2nd stuff; sorry.

BC (Urbandale): Do the Twins or Braves make the playoffs first?

Brendan Gawlowski: Braves, and it might not take that long.

Leslie (Downtown Des Moines): My indians are big time beasts. were going to win every major award this year and win it all. i bet you anything

Brendan Gawlowski: They were my preseason champs, but if you want to bet ANYTHING on them, email me an offer and I'll take the field.

sdsuphilip (Philip): Next year's college class looks better currently for 2017 draft than usual, right?

Brendan Gawlowski: It does. I should ask Chris Crawford to confirm, but my understanding is that 2017 is the best crop since 2011.

Mason (Texas): What are your thoughts on Ozzie Albies as a future 2B/SS for the Braves?

Brendan Gawlowski: If the hit tool translates, he probably slots in at second alongside Dansby. Should be a fun middle infield.

DocRoe (DC): Is Drew Ward a 1st division starter for you at 3b or do you have him as a 2nd div 1b type?

Brendan Gawlowski: I'm a little light on him. It sounds like he's more of a first basemen long term, and I don't know if he has the bat to be a regular there.

Cal Guy (Cal): Brendan, I don't see him mentioned much on prospect sites but Miguel Gomez has done nothing but rake during his career. Do you see him as a potential Kung Fu Panda 2 in SF?

Brendan Gawlowski: He can hit a little bit, but he's not that kind of player. He's 23 in low-A; Pablo was hitting .330 in the big leagues at 22.

Amed (Rosario): Amed Rosario! Tell me what your thoughts are!!!

Brendan Gawlowski: Lot of Rosario questions in the queue: I'm always a little nervous of players whose offensive value is totally driven by their hit tool. It's the hardest tool to evaluate, and if it ends up a little light of expectations, it's hard for a player to recapture that "lost" value somewhere else. That said, I've heard good things, and he'll stick at shortstop.

Duke (Winterset, Iowa): What kind of stats should we expect from recently promoted Zach Eflin in Philly? Do you think the league will figure him out the second time around, or does he have enough pitchability to a solid MLB and fantasy starter? Cheers

Brendan Gawlowski: Solid but unspectacular; I'm not fantasy expert, but I wouldn't lean on him.

Marctacoma (Oly): If MLB could bring back one skills competition for fun and to spark more interest in the All Star weekend, what would it be?

Brendan Gawlowski: I don't know exactly how it would work, but I'd love to see a bunch of elite bat control/hit tool guys in a "target practice" type of drill.

seddrah (Seattle): More likely to be traded this year: Dan Vogelbach, Kyle Schwarber, none, or both?

Brendan Gawlowski: Vogelbach; don't see the Cubs moving Schwarber while he's on the DL.

Steve (Philly): Let's say, hypothetically, that you are scheduled for a prospect chat at the same time as a competing(?) website. Would you treat it as a competition? If so, what will you do to win? I'm grading your make-up based on your answer.

Brendan Gawlowski: There are a lot of really smart people out looking at prospects, and I think there's value in searching around and talking to people about the leagues and players they cover regularly, whether at this website or another.

Truganini (CO): Give me a trade package you'd accept for Mike Trout.

Brendan Gawlowski: I wouldn't trade Mike Trout. There are a lot of teams that have the pieces to make a hypothetical deal work -- obviously, as the Angels organization is worse than most throughout the league -- but if I'm LAA's GM I'd try to restock the farm system however possible, embrace a rough 2017 and 2018, and look to compete again in the final years of Trout's deal.

Spencer (Texas): What can you tell me about these 3B prospects: McMahon, Ryon Healy, Dozier.

Brendan Gawlowski: Dozier's a little rough at third but he has big pop, and can drive the ball out the other way; jury is still out on Healy I'm bummed Nasheville doesn't head up to Tacoma this season but I was encouraged to see him turn on a couple of really good fastballs in the futures game. Don't think he's an impact guy, but he can hit a little and that always gives you a chance.

Chris (London): So many prospects/value pieces in a straight draft league: Currently in 2nd and looking to trade some to make the 'run'. Who should I look to move? All players being kept deep in the draft. 3 years of Dahl, Otani, Brad Zimmer, C. Frazier, Robles, 2 years of Moncada, Darvish, Raul Mondesi, Profar, 1 year of Peraza, Syndergaard. Thanks.

Brendan Gawlowski: I never read the stories that Parks would type when he got a behemoth fantasy baseball question he couldn't answer, but I'm sympathetic to the approach.

majorthomas (Texas): Is Alex Dickerson a big league starter?

Brendan Gawlowski: I don't think so.

sam (Utah): What kind of paths (timelines) do you see for Kyle Lewis and Tyler O'Neill

Brendan Gawlowski: O'Neill will be knocking on the door next season. If all goes well for Lewis, he could be ready by 2018. I wouldn't panic if it was a little longer though.

Jake (McCandles, TX): Does recently promoted Edubray Ramos have the chops to close in Philly and do think that will happen this year? Thanks...

Brendan Gawlowski: I want to see him miss more bats first.

Jay (LA): Do you see Hoskins and Cozens spending much more time in Reading or will we have to wait until next year to see them in Lehigh?

Brendan Gawlowski: Couple of questions about these guys today: I don't know a ton about their respective situations since I never see them play, but in general, the difference between Double-A and Triple-A isn't HUGE. Staying in Double-A all season doesn't really alter their MLB ETA.

JIm (Kansas): Do you see the Phillies making room for Nick Williams in the near future and is he ready for the bigs?

Brendan Gawlowski: I think he could use a little more seasoning.

edwardarthur (Illinois): Drew Hutchison -- Quad-A pitcher, or real improvements?

Brendan Gawlowski: It's tough to tell with a guy who was tasked with improving his command. I know that's not the authoritative answer you were looking for, but I haven't seen him pitch this year and he's the kind of guy where the answer to your question won't show up in his Triple-A numbers.

Trampler (the fields): Alford was one of my favorites coming into the year. His mysterious knee injury really seems to have derailed his season. Are you high on his future potential?

Brendan Gawlowski: You have to worry any time a guy has a lost season, especially someone like Alford who has already missed development time earlier in his professional career. I'm more pessimistic than I was five months ago.

That Tenor who messed up the anthem (Hiding from the other Tenors): About a month into the short season season, are there any Northwest League breakouts you feel could be legit?

Brendan Gawlowski: I'm not sure breakout is the word I'd use -- most of these guys either just got stateside or just became professionals -- but there are a few guys I certainly like ahead of their draft spot, including a couple of flier types. For two, I'll go with Matt Festa (8th round, tiny bonus) and Blaine Prescott (Texas's 28th rounder last year). Festa has four distinct pitches that he can throw for strikes and he touches 93. Prescott is a bit error prone at second base, but his actions are ahead of his glove and he barreled everything in my looks.

DP (Bluegrass State): Brendan, does Cody Reed take a step forward in the second half? The K potential is really intriguing from a fantasy standpoint...

Brendan Gawlowski: Which Cody Reed?

Jubbs (Smacktown): Alec Mills is flying under the radar. Do you think he can be a 50+ role player as a starter for my Royals or am I being too much of a homer? Thanks for the chat man.

Brendan Gawlowski: You know, I just missed him, he was still in NW Arkansas when Omaha came north. My understanding is that he's a little light of that. Good changeup, not sure he'll miss enough same-side bats.

DP (Bluegrass State): The on that calls GABP home! Sorry!

Brendan Gawlowski: I think he struggles while he learns how to attack righties. He's already showed growth in that department, incorporating his changeup -- which is actually a useful pitch -- and working in a bastard of a cutter but I think it'll be bumpy for him in 2016.

Steve (NY): At what point do you think we'll see Desmond Lindsay in game action, and what do you expect to see when he's out there?

Brendan Gawlowski: Looks like he's getting in games in the GCL right now.

Steve (SD): Have you gotten to see Luis Urias at any point? He's having a remarkable season for someone so young for his level.

Brendan Gawlowski: Not in-person but I've caught some of his outings on television. Impressive pitchability for his age to be sure.

Bullpen (San Diego): Who ends up being the 'stopper' for the Pads? Maurer, Buchter, or maybe Quackenbush?? Maurer's current numbers don't give much reason for optimism.

Brendan Gawlowski: Two years ago, I'd have said Maurer. Of those three, I think it's Buchter right now.

Donnie (Ohio): Has Mookie Betts climbed the ladder to the tier that Trout/Harper are in?

Brendan Gawlowski: No.

Matt (KY): Josh Hader, Reynaldo Lopez, and Amir Garrett seem to have similarities in their profiles with similar volatility. Which of those guys is your preference long-term? Why?

Brendan Gawlowski: I'll take Lopez on upside, even if he's not a lock to remain a starter. Hell, none of them are.

Jquinton82 (NY): What's going on with Forrest Wall this year, ceiling still the same or is the shine coming off?

Brendan Gawlowski: Timing is off, he's making worse contact, and striking out more. I'm concerned, but he is young for the level.

Jerry (Earth): Any chance you will get to see Greifer Andrade at all? I am a sucker for recent J2 signings.

Brendan Gawlowski: I did. Very raw, and I had no problem with him getting sent back to the AZL for more consistent at-bats.

Brendan Gawlowski: Ok folks, that's all I have time for today. Thanks for stopping by, and I'm sure we'll do it again before too long.


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