Ask Professor Parks your prospect questions before he heads for Florida.
Jason Parks: I'm watching FC Spartak Moscow vs SL Benfica. Let's talk prospects.
lewish (WA): can you discuss the difference in leaking and glide in a hitter, my sense so far is leak has to do with the front side, and glide has to do with keeping the hands back, but I'm not sure of that or even if there is a difference? Thanks!
Jason Parks: Basically, yes. Let's start with the hands. You want them to move back and glide forward (for trigger) with ease and fluidity. Whether or not the hand load is too deep or shallow depends on the hitter, but ideally you don't want either; rather, you want to be as efficient as possible, easing the hands back and then easing them into the swing transition. Rushing or falling behind in the process will directly affect the swing and the timing.
With the hips and the weight shift, you want to stay in rhythm with your hands. If you open the hips early or leak to your front foot in your weight shift, you will be playing catch-up with your hands. It all has to work together to be effective. You can see how easily it is to get out of whack.
xavier (texas): What does Gary Brown's future look like after an uneven performance at AA?
Jason Parks: Player development can often scar the skin, and 2012 wasn't all that pleasant for Brown. If he can learn and rebound from it, he will be better served going forward. I think the level exposed some weaknesses in his game, and some of those can be corrected via adjustment. Brown has a legit major league future, with a plus defensive skill-set. The bat is the difference between a 4/5 OF and a major league regular. I think the bat is better than the 2012 stats indicate, but I don't think its as good as the 2011 numbers suggested. I think the bat has a chance to play as average, which should be enough to keep him on the field.
sitdancer (DC): Do you think Shohei Otani's decision to come to the US right out of high school will make it an easier transition to American baseball than if he first turned pro in Japan? Do you have some scouting reports on him to assess how he compares to stateside high school pitchers?
Jason Parks: Sure; I think getting into a pro dev system early is key. The kid obviously has sharp stuff, but like a stateside high school arm, the transition to pro ball can bring about realities that suppress the power of the arsenal. Some arms are able to refine command and build a secondary arsenal without losing their raw velo, while others lose some of the intensity on their FB. We have no idea what the process will do to Otani's stuff, but that kind of arm strength is impressive, and any team that is lucky enough to acquire him will be better for the addition.
da levy (cleveland in the time of the assassins): Thanks for your efforts, as always, Jason. I was wondering if you could riff on Oakland's Chris Carter. When players like Hosmer and Moustakas fail initially at the highest level, I tend to see that as a positive; they're learning how to fail, which is part of the game. Most prognosticators still see a similar caliber player to that which they saw in the minors. Carter has had a tougher path. What type of career do you think he has in store?
Jason Parks: I've never been that high on Chris Carter. He certainly performed better than I thought in 2012, but the swing and miss in his game still gives me some concern. He has a ton of power, and if he can make enough contact and show good secondary skills, the Ks won't matter much. Personally, I'm still not a big believer in Carter, but he does bring home run power to the table, and its worth giving him ABs. I always saw him as a AAAA type, but he will no doubt prove me wrong and hit 30 bombs in 2013. I also thought the 2012 A's would lose 100 games, so what do I know? That org constantly makes me look bad.
Erik (Longwood, FL): Professor Parks,
With the season-long hubub of Stephen Strasburg's successful return from injury, I recall the sad case of Mark Prior and his derailed career. The popular party line when Prior was actually a good pitcher was that "all the scouts say he has perfect mechanics". Now that he's been released from his 5th (?) organization, there are plenty of people who look back and readily point out some pretty substantial problems with Prior's mechanics. Problems that, you would think, are now so obvious that it's curious that anyone at the time would have claimed Prior was so mechanically sound when he was not.
So this begs a couple of questions. Did we all just hear what we wanted to hear and nobody who really mattered in baseball was actually saying that Prior's mechanics were sound? Or did scouts and industry professionals really just miss the mark so badly? Or is the truth somewhere in the middle, and the consensus in the industry is that Prior was in the same boat as many other pitchers in having a few flaws, but they didn't want to change him (because that's easier said than done) and he was just unlucky in being hit hard by the same injury bug that gets many other pitchers?
And lastly, are there any lessons in the Prior story that can be applied to Strasburg? Maybe the lesson with him is that few people not named Greg Maddux have perfect mechanics, lots of pitchers get hurt, and we need to stop freaking out about them before or after the fact?
Jason Parks: Every pitcher is different. You can look at bad mechanics and raise the red flag, and then watch that pitcher throw 200 innings a year without an issue. Arm injuries happen, and pitchers break for a variety of reasons, and more often than not, our injury projections aren't on the same level as our tool projections. It has to be player specific. Some pitchers just make it work, while others can look clean and effortless and then the arm explodes and lands in the fourth row on the lap of a crying child. What caused it? Was it bad mechanics after all? Was it the result of overwork? I'm not fond of the mechanical revisionists who cry foul after the fact. It's easy to be right when you don't have to worry about being wrong.
A.C. Slater (California): Thanks for the chat Jason. Do you see any top of the rotation arms in the cubs system? Seems like they are loaded with low ceiling #5 or middle relief types. Are there a few names to watch for?
Jason Parks: I don't see any high-ceiling arms. I'm working on the Cubs list right now for the BP prospect rankings, so I don't want to tip my hand, but let's just say that the system is very top heavy and very bat heavy. They have a few arms that have the stuff to take steps forward in 2013, and I will identify a few of those arms in the prospect report.
Nick (Michigan): It's almost awards season! Who are your MLB picks for the following:
1. Best hair (head)
2. Best hair (facial)
3. Best customer of Old Country Buffet
4. Manager most likely to have read any of the Twilight books.
5. AL MVP.
Jason Parks: 1) Verducci 2)Motte 3)Billy Butler 4) Jim Tracy 5) Miguel Cabrera (oh...sheeeeet)
temple (madison, wi): What kind of ceiling does Trevor Rosenthal have?
Jason Parks: It's high. The arm strength is obvious, but the delivery is ultra-smooth and the arm works very well. His delivery is very Oswalt-like, which I enjoy very much. I think he can start, but I understand the allure of keeping him in the 'pen going forward. His arsenal isn't crazy deep, as he relies heavily on the FB. But he does know how to pitch, and I think he could develop into a #3 starter type. Of course, he could also pump near elite FB in short-bursts, which helps his secondary stuff play up and makes him a monster. He has closer's stuff, and based on the reports of his makeup, he also has the fortitude for high leverage. Interesting situation. The Cardinals are good at drafting.
utdavidson (Austin): For comparison purposes, can you give examples of players who have extremely long swings that have found ways to be successful?
Jason Parks: For the most part, it takes a longer, leveraged swing to deposit the ball on the other side of the fence. Hitters with short strokes and crazy power are the rare ones. Take most power threats with big Ks and big power numbers. They aren't going to hit for average because they don't keep their bats on a linear plane in the zone and they aren't looking for contact; rather, the big power guys are looking to create loft in their swing, and they are looking to tap into their raw strength via leverage. Not every power hitter is created equal, and as I mentioned earlier in this chat, sometimes it just works and sometimes it just doesn't. Chris Davis can generate quality bat speed, but that swing can get very long. When he is off his timing, he can't anything and the power doesn't play. When he can make it work, he can hit 30+ bombs despite the swing and miss. It all depends on the hitter and how they work within their weaknesses.
Peter Jennings (NYC): Is Profar SUCH a sure thing that the Rangers should consider trading Andrus (a proven commodity, and at SS, a rare one at that) for pitching or an OF?
Jason Parks: I wouldn't trade Elvis because he is a better defensive SS than Profar, and his bat should be superior for at least a few seasons. Profar has the higher ceiling because he has higher offensive upside [read: more power]. But Elvis is still a stud. Unless the Rangers get an offer that blows them away, I'd rather roll with Andrus at the 6 and Profar at 2B.
Dave (CA): Does Rymer Liriano have plus raw power? Ive heard he's a batting practice hero but it hasnt really showed up in his numbers at this point.
Jason Parks: Sure. Easy 6 raw power, but it doesn't play at 6 in game action yet. That's the thing about power potential that people often forget or overlook. Power flows from the hit tool, which makes sense because you have to make contact with the ball in order to drive the ball. A hitter can gave monster raw strength and put on massive BP shows that make scouts cry and swoon over the glory they just witnessed. But if you can't hit in game action, or can't produce bat speed without selling out, or can't generate the necessary loft and backspin against live pitching, you can have all the raw power potential in the world and it wont mean shit. Power potential and where power plays are two different animals. At this stage of the game, Liriano's power is all about the potential.
Gregory Polanco (Pittsburgh, in two years): Hey, Jason! I think I'm gonna be a star. Your thoughts? Thanks.
Jason Parks: Not many stars in the major league sky, but you have a chance to be visible to the naked eye.
Mark Prior (Land of dissemblers): Just to clarify, for Erik from Longwood: Anyone and everyone who says *now* that they saw my injuries coming, and that they knew I had bad mechanics, even when I was healthy and extremely effective...is full of crap. They are simply lying, Erik. You will not find a single source, anywhere, who expressed concerns about my mechanics when I was healthy. Besides, I broke down because I had five starts in Sept., 2003, with pitch counts of 131, 129, 124, 131 again, and 133. (All but one without any extra rest days either before OR after.) I was never the same. My question, Jason, is what if any pitch limit would you put your minor league arms, if you were a Player Development Honcho? Thanks!
Jason Parks: I wouldn't establish blanket pitch limits because every arm is different. I think developmental systems need to be tailored to the individual as much as possible.
DEbner315 (Syracuse): Was Buster Posey dropping a #want the highlight of your career?
Jason Parks: No.
Thomas (CA): Do you think Grant Green has a spot on the A's 25 man roster on Opening Day? With Sizemore at 2B and Donaldson at 3B, I can see him as the utility guy.
Jason Parks: I think he could be a super-utility type; a player capable of playing multiple spots on the diamond, including center field and the left side of the infield. Valuable player to have, and that value spikes if he can hit.
steve (Syeacuse): Do you think John Lamb can put himself back on the map this year?
Jason Parks: Yes. I don't think he will be on the Top Prospect Map, but he could put himself back on the Player with Major League Potential Map. I think the Royals need to put as many players on that map as possible.
Paul (DC): Is an upside projection/comparison of the Marlin's Christian Yelich someone like Nick Markakis?
Jason Parks: Yeah, I think Yelich profiles as a .285+ hitter with 10-15 HR and a ton of doubles. It's also not out of the question that he develops into a .300 hitter.
kok (TEXAS!): Jurickson Profar for Oscar Taveres + Tyrell Jenkins -- why WOULDNT the Rangers (and/or the Cardinals) do this?
Jason Parks: Depends on player evaluation. If you think Profar is a future superstar at a premium position, you don't trade him. If you think Taveras is a future .300/30 type, and Jenkins is a major leaguer with some impact potential, then it would change the debate. I can think of several reasons both pro and con for a prospect swap like this. When in doubt, lean towards the guy you know the best, the player you have made the investment in.
knockoutking (East Texas): so the question we all want to know: what are you drinking?
Jason Parks: Club soda with a heavy stack of ice; lime wedge; nice glass
brian206 (Brooklyn): Are you any good at baseball? I am not questioning your credentials or anything i am just curious about whether or not you can take what you know to look for mechanically in a hitter or pitcher and translate it to yourself.
Jason Parks: I'm 35 years-old and have a badly damaged left knee, so I'm not translating anything to anything. When I was younger, I was very good at baseball, playing shortstop at the select level in Texas. I think I have a good idea of what makes a good player, but not based on my own playing experiences as much as its based on watching players at the professional level who are exceptional. I know what it is supposed to look like.
Manny Machado (Baltimore): Where will Carlos Martinez start the season next year? Will he be in the rotation by September?
Jason Parks: I assume he starts back in Double-A, but that's not my call. I think there is a better chance that he is in the 'pen next September, but only because of the instant impact factor rather than a move that's indicative of his long term future. Scouts still seem to be mixed on his role, and I'm still leaning towards him being able to start.
Lil' Sebastian (The Barn): What does it mean when people say Darin Ruf has dead hands?
Jason Parks: They aren't electric or especially fast or fluid. They are just hands.
utdavidson (Austin): Did you watch the debate last night? The one between Oscar Taveras' ceiling and the laws of physics? It got pretty heated, with both sides calling the other a liar
Jason Parks: Oscar Taveras vs. bayonets and horses
Paul (DC): Are you sure there is no vodka with that club soda and lime wedge? For me, vodka tonics have to have a lime. Lemon wedges simply fail to compliment.
Jason Parks: I'm not a big vodka fan. I don't like the smell.
xxx (yyy): does Barca have enough to overcome Real Madrid? their injuries on the back 4 worry me...
Jason Parks: No shirt, no shoes, no Puyol
Mike (Argentina): If you were a gambling man, and making bets on where Otani ends up, where would you put your money?
Jason Parks: Texas Rangers
Kevin (Miami): What are your thoughts on Garrett Gould
Jason Parks: He's solid, but not special. I didn't like the way his body looked this fall. It appeared doughy. It was also 100 degrees, so I might have been hallucinating
Vodka (Your Liquor Cabinet): The feeling is mutual.
Jason Parks: I don't have any vodka in my liquor cabinet. My apartment is the size of a liquor cabinet. I don't drink as much as people seem to think. I enjoy drinking bourbon and I enjoy drinking mezcal. Those are my jams.
fredlummis (Houston): Do the Astros have any outfielders on the farm who deserve a shot at the big club in spring training? This year's crop of prospects (Schafer, JD Mart, Bogu, etc.) did not exactly establish themselves.
Jason Parks: No. Help is not on the way. Springer should get there eventually, assuming he learns to stop swinging so hard that his shoes explode off his feet killing already dying children in the first row of the stadium; Grossman is a 4/5 for me at best; Santana is boom or bust, with a lot of swing and miss and plus power. It's not OF heavy.
xxx (yyy): who was the best defensive player you saw this year?
Jason Parks: On the prospect side? Lindor at SS; Engel Beltre plays a pretty defense in the OF; Austin Hedges behind the plate; Tom Verducci showed some serious defense when I approached for a little touchy touchy
xxx (yyy): what is your non-playing season writing plans looking like?
Jason Parks: Prospect rankings, and perhaps a Gary Lutz inspired piece of fiction, most likely about Tom Verducci's existence
Johnson (IL): Can you explain why you see Miller as a better prospect than Rosenthal?
Jason Parks: Sure. I like the size and I like the arsenal. I don't think they are far apart as prospects/players at this stage, though. I look at it this way: I'm starting a team and I have to pick either Miller or Rosenthal for my organization. I'm taking Miller because I like the ceiling just a little bit more. He's also a Texan.
utdavidson (Austin): Safe to say that Rangers will still be in top 10 systems with graduation of Olt and Profar?
Jason Parks: Neither player has graduated yet, at least as far as I am concerned. Both will appear on the Rangers list. If I were to remove those two, yes, I would still rank their farm in the top 10 because of the overall depth, but they would be closer to #10.
knockoutking (East Texas): If I am looking to get a bottle of mezcal for a friend -- what brands would you recommend looking in to?
Jason Parks: Los Danzantes is my favorite
EngelFan4LifeYo (Frisco): Is Engel Beltre's defense good enough for him to have a major league career, even with his problems at the plate?
Jason Parks: Yes. He can play all three spots at an above-average level, with excellent range, a very good glove, and a very strong arm.
Kirby (Minnesota): Now that they've gotten some professional experience under their belts, who was the best player taken in the 2012 draft?
Jason Parks: Way too early to say.
m4 (m5): what two players would you like to see debate each other in a presidential debate?
Jason Parks: Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera
R.A. Wagman (Toronto): Jason - what on-field in-game elements do you attribute to managing? In your view, how many (or what range) wins/losses can a manager be responsible for in a season? Thanks.
Jason Parks: Managers need to be hyper-aware of the ebbs and flows of the physical and emotional current of the roster. It's much easier to manager from the laptop and from outcome than to manage in the moment. I dont think managers receive enough credit for their role in the process. I think in-game managerial decisions could account for +/- 5 wins? Maybe? I don't know. But I do think the personality management has a bigger impact than we can measure.
jose (stl): how long would it take you to grow a beard like Motte?
Jason Parks: A few months. I'm a man. I can grow a beard.
iorg34 (Peshawar): Will Billy Hamilton have success in MLB? What would you do with him in 2013?
Jason Parks: Yes. I'm still a Billy Hamilton fanatic, but I've come a long way towards seeing his major league future. The speed is special, and I don't think that is lost on anybody at this point. The bat has improved, and that's the biggest factor here. If he can sting the ball, and give his legs a chance to make things happen, he has a chance to be a legit impact player and not just an impact base runner. Moving to CF will help his overall value, as the skill-set should eventually play at plus rather than as fringe-average or below, like it was at SS. Hamilton is a throwback player, the type to hit .280+ with twice the tripes as homers, 80+ steals a season, and at least solid-average defense in CF. His wheels could give him special range, which could make him an even better defensive force than I'm giving him credit for.
nicklocarno (sfa): Which player/players has/have the best walk-up music in baseball? The worst? What would your song be before your hypothetical at-bats?
Jason Parks: I don't pay attention to walk-up music. I'd walk-up to different stuff, depending on my mood. I'd select tracks from the Beatles, Ween, New Order, and the Frogs. If I closed games, I'd walk to the mound to Pantera, "Cowboys From Hell"
m4 (m5): care to elaborate on the Miggy Cabrera MVP choice?
Jason Parks: If I was a pitcher, he's the hitter I would want to face the least. I understand and respect the statistical metrics that paint Trout as the superior player. He is certainly the best all-around talent in the game. But I don't think value should be restricted to any one approach or any metric that happens to have a popular flavor. I think you can determine value in a number of ways, and I think when it comes to the MVP award, the question of value and what that means is nebulous, and therefore subjective and specific to the person attempting to make assign that worth. For me, the hardest thing to do in any sport is to hit a baseball, and on the offensive side of the coin, its what takes you to the majors, keeps you in the majors, and allows you to excel in the majors. Just from that reductive view, I'd take Cabrera. I also don't give a shit if you or anybody else disagrees. You can take Trout as your MVP. It's not a bad choice. He's incredible. But there isn't a right or wrong answer, and those that suggest there needs really bother me. Ultimately, I don't know why people chase binary conclusions with such vigor. I like debate and I like opinions that differ because of personal point of view. It makes the game fun.
utdavidson (Austin): Does Otani project as a starter or late relief arm?
Jason Parks: He's 18; I haven't seen him; he's not even in a pro system yet.
BWooster (Finland): Any baseball book you can recommend, for the off season?
Jason Parks: "Why Michael Couldn't HIt" by Harold L Klawans, M.D. It's not just about baseball, but you will like it. Trust me.
xxx (yyy): any advice articles coming out in the near future?
Jason Parks: Soon. I plan on working on a few when I'm in Florida this week. The problem is keeping them PG when the questions always start off beyond that.
xxx (yyy): your last meal would consist of:
Jason Parks: Chicken Fried Steak; cream gravy; mashed potatoes; fried okra; Texas toast; unsweetened iced tea
pat (kc): who is set to make the biggest jump in prospect status in the royals system this year?
Jason Parks: Two players: RHP Miguel Almonte and SS Aldaberto Mondesi. I will push to have both in the top 10 in that already deep system. They are impressive talents.
fredlummis (Houston): What kind of power potential do you see in Jonathan Singleton?
Jason Parks: 7 raw; most likely to play at 5 early, but should tick up as he matures as a hitter.
Jesse (Pittsburgh): Have you figured out why guys like Hak Ju Lee randomly drive Gerrit Cole's fastball over the fenced area? I find it hard to believe he randomly gets hit so hard with such monster stuff.
Jason Parks: Good question. A good fastball is more than just velocity. It's like a pretty smile. Sure, it can make everything better, and against certain competition, a good smile can clean up the room. But quality hitter can square velocity, which makes movement, deception, and location big parts of the overall fastball equation, especially at the major league level. If they can see it, and it stays true, hitters with bat speed and/or fast triggers can put the barrel on it. If the pitch has some wiggle, the velo plays up even more because the barrel to ball relationship will become more difficult to establish.
Joe Hamrahi (Boss) (Around the corner): Hey, are you checking any bags or only bringing carry-ons on the plane??!!
Jason Parks: I'll be checking a bag because I take my packing seriously and I don't like to pack light just to fit a bag in the overhead compartment. I also like to bring oversized bottles of lotion and various shampoo/condition products.
Drogba's Ghost (Somewhere in China): As Chelsea falls behind 1-0 to Shaktar my question for you is if you could convert any soccer player into a baseball player who would you pick and why?
Jason Parks: Puyol. Why? C'mon. #wet
Ashitaka1110 (Houston, TX): Who do you take; Nicholas Tropeano or Michael Foltynewicz? NiTro has had more success, at a higher level, and is only a year older than Folty.
Jason Parks: The Astros will be the first team up in the BP prospect rankings, and this debate just occurred when compiling the list. Tropeano probably has the best CH in the org, but the ceiling isn't all that sexy. Folty has a a slightly higher ceiling and is younger, so when you get into that interchangeable range that exists between 9-15, going with the guy with the slightly higher ceiling makes the most sense. I originally had Tropeano ahead of Folty, but later reversed that stance.
utdavidson (Austin): If I get a tramp stamp tattoo of your face, can I be the "BP Chat Questioner of the Week"?
Jason Parks: Yes. You can probably join the prospect team.
mj (toronto): Do you think Christian Bethancourt is a full time player in his prime, or does he profile as more of a backup catcher?
Jason Parks: He has the skill-set to be a very good starter, but it takes more than just raw tools to make it. I've questioned his #want in the past, and after a dismal offensive ceiling, its hard to see anything beyond a backup, and even that isn't a given if the bat doesn't improve.
utdavidson (Austin): Does Patrick Swayze have the coolest mullet ever?
Jason Parks: Its a quality piece of hair. Kurt Russell in Big Trouble in Little China brings some heat as well.
xxx (yyy): how many SBs would Billy Hamilton have averaged a year if he played in the 80s?
Jason Parks: Probably around the same as he would now. He's going to run a lot, and if the % remains high, I doubt he faces much team restriction.
kcboomer (KC): Royals deep system?? You are kidding right. Other than Perez they haven't produced anything but a few relief pitchers in years.
Jason Parks: I didn't say anything about producing major league talent, although that is always the goal. They have a lot of quality talent in their org, from the complex league to the upper-minors. It won't be easy to crack the Top Ten in the Royals system this season. They have depth.
modofacid (philly): If you're the Mets, do you give a job to Jordany Valdespin next year? At what position? Does he have a first division ceiling?
Jason Parks: I'm not sure. Depends on all available options. I wouldn't consider him a first-division talent, no.
utdavidson (Austin): If a child came to your apartment for Halloween in a Martin Kove mask, what treat would you give them?
Jason Parks: If a kid came to my apartment on Halloween, I would probably ask him to leave as quickly as possible because my neighborhood sucks and kids are easy marks.
Jake (DC): What kind of effect does Pablo Sandoval's weight have on his playing style? Obviously it makes him a below average runner, but would he be a better player if he weighed 200 pounds instead of 2000?
Jason Parks: He would be different, yes, but he's also the type of athlete that wears his weight well. He's clearly fat, but he makes it work. Again, it comes down to the individual. Not every overweight individual has the natural athleticism and coordination to make their fat work in a professional environment.
justiniodiddly (Chi): And when it comes to differing opinions, can't there be a good case for Verlander as MVP as well? He is responsible for a larger % of at bats than Cabrera is, and he has a huge impact on things like the bullpen, etc.
Jason Parks: Sure. He wouldn't be my first or second choice, but its hard to find a better pitcher in the game.
justiniodiddly (Chi): And when it comes to differing opinions, can't there be a good case for Verlander as MVP as well? He is responsible for a larger % of at bats than Cabrera is, and he has a huge impact on things like the bullpen, etc.
Jason Parks: Sure. He wouldn't be my first or second choice, but its hard to find a better pitcher in the game.
Bud Selig (New York NY): Who, in your opinion, has the biggest penis in baseball? My pick would be Derek Lee or CC. Sabathia, but I could see Neftali Feliz possessing a 80 grade wanger. Your thoughts?
Jason Parks: I just thought this was funny. It seems so earnest, right?
EngelFan4LifeYo (Frisco): Who has a better MLB career...Engel Beltre or Craig Gentry?
Jason Parks: EngelFan4LifeYo. Even odds that this is actually Engel Beltre
Rob (Madison): Jason, thank you for that wonderful answer to the Cabrera question. The faction that tells a fan "you're wrong because my advanced stat says so" is one of the least attractive parts of the saber community. We need your voice of reason, more now that we've lost KG. Question, what does the international market look line this off season?
Jason Parks: I think strong baseball opinions have a tendency to turn people off, regardless if they have root in stats or scouting. Again, it often comes down to the futile hunt to establish what is right and what is wrong. I've said this before, but the more I learn about baseball, the more I realize how little I actually know. There is so much to learn and appreciate about the game that it seems like such a waste to pour cement in the holes of our own opinions. I think we should always be open to different means and methods.
pmuehlenkamp (Cincinnati): Obviously, Billy Hamilton is the Reds #1 prospect. Who is in the running for #2?
Jason Parks: Robert Stephenson is legit. He will be high on that list.
xxx (yyy): Care to comment on Big Tex burning down?
Jason Parks: I wasn't happy about it.
Jim (WA): Are you still high on Jorge Bonifacio and impressed with his hit tool? Somehow in my memory your quote stated that a scout murmur about Bonifacio's hit tool and even power potential. Whether that's true or false, let's talk about Jorge.
Jason Parks: Bonifacio was a KG favorite, but I like him as well. I don't like the athletic profile, but he has bat speed and legit power potential. The raw power is very impressive, and several scouts have suggested he can stand with some of the big boys in the minors in that department. I'm not THAT high on his power, but Ive seen him launch a few bombs, so I can see the case.
knockoutking (East Texas): any hope (at all) of you appearing as a host/co-host on any other BP, or non BP, related podcast?
Jason Parks: I'd like to start a prospect podcast in 2013, but I haven't had time to think about it.
Guillermo (Montevideo, Uruguay): What does a person from the US make of a sport absolutely devoid of statistics like soccer? I mean, I grew up with it, but you ppl kinda didnīt. Just askin'
Jason Parks: Soccer has plenty of stats, but that's not why I'm drawn to it. I like the kinetic pace and fluidity of the game, and the #grace and coordination required to play at a high level. I could watch soccer all day long. I love it.
knockoutking (East Texas): best meal you have had in the last 12 months?
Jason Parks: Gatlin's in Houston with some BP friends. It was a brisket sandwich with sausage on top, served with dirty rice and beans. I loved it.
pmuehlenkamp (Cincinnati): Donald Lutz is tearing up the AFL right now; he is near the top of almost every hitting category. What is his ceiling?
Jason Parks: I have an article about Lutz (and a few other AFL warriors) coming out tomorrow on BP.
Okay, here's the deal. I've answered 72 questions, but I have 165 left in the queue. I need to run a quick errand in preparation for my trip tomorrow, but I'd like to continue this chat when I get back. I'm going to step away for 30 minutes (max), but I'll answer for another few hours when I return. Deal? Stop back by.
JayT (San Francisco): Who is the best power prospect in the minors right now? Are there any guys that you could see having 80 power in the majors?
Jason Parks: Guys like Miguel Sano, Joey Gallo, and Javier Baez have huge power potential
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): How good is Jairo Beras? Are the Juan Gone comparisons legit?
Jason Parks: No. He's taller than Gonzalez and doesn't have a mustache. He's raw. It's hard to tell what he is yet because the Rangers haven't messed with his swing. He has a lot of raw power.
For me, It's Profar, Brinson, Guzman, Beras
rmunter (Washington DC): What's the general scouting world's view of Brandon Crawford's defense?
Jason Parks: I think it depends on the scout and at what point in the year that saw him. He made a lot of improvements to his defensive game as the year progressed. I have mixed feelings about Crawford. To me, he's the type that makes plays look harder rather than making them look easier. Some defenders are so natural, and athletic, and fluid that even high-difficulty plays look routine. Crawford makes a play and it takes every ounce of his being and people can witness the effort so it looks like he showed a lot of #want in the act, which I'm sure he did. Elvis Andrus makes the same play and it looks routine and common.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): Have you soured a bit on Guzman or is Brinson a Justin Upton starter kit?
Jason Parks: I haven't soured on Guzman at all. Brinson isn't an Upton starter kit. If you have to force a comp, force Cameron Maybin instead. Brinson is a lot of fun to watch. He can play a very good center field, he can run, and he can square balls. It s nice package.
Mike (Utica, NY): Can David Dahl be Mike Trout lite?
Jason Parks: Please stop.
Josh (St. Louis): What are Kolten Wong and Oscar Taveras' possibilities of starting the year with the big club in 2013?
Jason Parks: Not very good. I don't see a clear path to the majors for Taveras in 2013, unless an off-season trade or injury opens up an opportunity. I think he reaches the level, but I don't think he breaks camp.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): You alluded to Baez having huge raw power, with his improved defense increasing his likelihood of sticking at ss....are we looking at the Future Number 1 Prospect in baseball?
Jason Parks: Not likely. Baez has incredible talent; major league talent. But he is very loose right now; he swings at anything and everything and doesn't know how to slow the game down yet. The raw tools are great, and he does have a chance to stick at SS. He won't have the best range, but his hands are excellent and his arm is very strong. Depending on what his body does during the maturation process, a shift to 3B seems like an option. The bat is the game changer. He has 30+ power in that stick, with some of the best bat speed you will see. But he's wild right now. If he wants to refine and mature on the field, he could be an all-star. If he wants to go crazy and swing max-effort at every offering, well, he isn't going to develop as planned and he will fall apart as he advances. He has a long way to go, but the ceiling is scary.
Bill (New Mexico): Not a prospects question, but any thoughts on that weird thrice-batted ball that Hunter Pence hit last night?
Jason Parks: I love Pence. He has to be a top 3 player to watch in baseball. It's just abnormal. I've watched that video 100 times. What a freak show.
OscarT'sboydungeon (Chicago): If you're the Cardinals, do you bring up Taveras early next year, or let him play in the minors and get his at bats? Might be a good thing for him to split time with Beltran and learn from those guys.
Jason Parks: I think he needs steady ABs, so I' rather see him playing everyday in Triple-A than riding the pine in the majors, getting sporadic opportunities. He still has a lot to learn, especially in the field and on-base, so playing is paramount right now.
John (Blacksburg): Could you see Anthony Rendon hitting 25 bombs in his prime?
Jason Parks: I don't see that. I can see a ton of doubles and a high batting average, but I don't see that kind of power. I was thinking he could be a .285+ hitter with good OBP skills, 10-15 bombs, and a ton of doubles (ceiling)
lewish (WA): Zunino of Mariners, intially I heard his D was his strength and we have to see how the stick progress...now seems I am hearing the opposite...what do you see/hear?
Jason Parks: I think he's balanced, which is what could make him an all-star. His tools aren't loud, but he's solid with the glove and the stick, and that kind of talent is rare behind the plate. I don't think he's a middle-of-the-order hitter, but a high quality 6/7 hole type with good defensive skills. That's a great package.
Kate (Waco): What do you do about Kinsler, if you have the best-case-senario of Andrus-Profar SS-2B?
Jason Parks: I'd move him to 1B to help save his legs and allow him to focus on the bat. When Olt plays 3B in that lineup, all four spots would be occupied by former/current shortstops. That's pretty cool.
matt (LA): Is Rymer Liriano kind of like Vladimir Guerrero with Mike Trout speed and Jeff Francouer's arm?
Jason Parks: Yeah, kind of like that. Also, I'm kind of like Tom Verducci.
SMcEwen (Winnipeg): I remember when you wrote about the Yankees this system your thoughts on Angelo Gumbs. Are you still as high on him, or how much has your opinion changed?
Jason Parks: I still like his athleticism and his bat speed. His approach needs work and he needs a lot of refinement, but you can't teach bat speed like that.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, Tx): If Hamilton can be had at 4yrs 22/mil is he a Ranger?
Either way, who is your pick to sign Greinke?
Jason Parks: He can't be had for that, and even if he could, I'm not sure he would be a Ranger. Greinke will sign with the Braves.
Luke (Baltimore): How do you see Manny Machado's bat developing next year, assuming he stays healthy and gets a full ~650 PA at the big league level?
Jason Parks: His development will take a step forward, but that doesn't mean his offensive production will mirror that progression. Once the book circulates, Machado will have to make secondary adjustments or face the realities of playing at the highest level. He is going to struggle, and it might look bad at times. Patience. Most young hitters take time to develop, and Machado's ceiling is extremely high. Very talented kid, and he knows how to stumble and respond, so I think he has a good chance to survive a tough full-season.
scott (saint louis): You rock. Thanks for the frat chat!
Jason Parks: The frat chat You don't know me very well, apparently, Bruh
Trevor (PA): Trevor May, 22yrs old and just finished first AA level with unimpressive stats. I mean, 9.1 K/9 is fine but the mechanical inconsistency (per Bradley Ankrom)is worrisome. No.2 ceiling, yay or nay?
Jason Parks: Young pitchers have mechanical inconsistencies. That's not a deal breaker. They are often working on things that the average eye can't determine, and that can lead to setbacks and uneven performances. I'm not that high on May, meaning I don't quite buy the #2 ceiling. I think he can develop into a major league starter, and has the profile to log innings. It's not a special arm, but that's a big value player if he can become an innings chewer.
Bryant (San Diego): Does Cory Spangenberg's rough year have anything to do with his injury, or is he just struggling to adjust to more advanced pitching?
Jason Parks: I can't speak to how much the injury affected his season, but that kind of stuff is usually a factor. Advanced pitching is probably the biggest factor, though. The talent steps up at every level. Stay ahead of the wave or get smothered.
Mannequin Hand (around the apartment, somewhere): Don't forget to pack me!
Jason Parks: I usually don't travel with my mannequin hands, but I won't rule it out.
Patrick (Boston): Who is the odds on favorite to establish himself as the number one prospect in baseball 12 months from now? The guy who could make the big leap in 2013. Miguel Sano, Francisco Lindor, Addison Russell all come to mind.
Jason Parks: Lindor if the bat explodes, but I don't really see it happening like that. I think it will be a tools freak that happens to put it together. Those are the #1 types. Like if a guy like Buxton or Starling explode.
Scott (Saint Louis): Automatic spell check isnt great on my phone. Frat was supposed to be great. My mistake...
Jason Parks: You are forgiven. Please drink from my bosom to complete the bond.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): Jorge Alfaro, 70 arm, 65 power, 60 hit?
Jason Parks: 80 arm; 70 raw power potential; 5 hit
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): Bryce Harper's incredible first year wasn't given that much attention. Do you see .280, 30+hrs, .365 OBP, and 25 SB for him next year?
Jason Parks: I don't think he hits 30+ bombs yet, but it will happen soon. Maybe it happens. I don't know. I think he's an easy 20-20 type, but like any player, he will need to make the next adjustment after pitchers adjust to him.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): So you think Guzman is Tony Clark....why not Adrian Gonzalez?
Jason Parks: Because he's more similar to Tony Clark, especially the physical dimensions. He's a hard player to peg because he's so young. I see the hit tool, and I think he could hit for average with very good secondary skills. He's limited to 1B, but he works his ass off and he should be able to develop into a quality glove. The power is the swing state, as he could be a 10-15 type with a lot of doubles or he could take the step where the power plays at 25+. I see him as a .285+ gap hitter with 10/15 bombs and a bunch of doubles. But its so early in the process and that projection could change a bunch.
kbs (key largo): People reference Mark Prior's pitch counts, however he was hit in the elbow by a line drive, flipped up in the air on the base path by Marcus Giles and landed on his shoulder, and one injury dealt with his Achilles. I think it was mostly bad luck.
Jason Parks: Yeah, too many factors at play to throw blame on one specific villan.
Ashitaka1110 (Houston, TX): If Brett Wallace struggles next year (his K% makes one think he might) and Jonathan Singleton is tearing up AAA (off to a nice AFL start right now), how soon before we see him get the call?
Jason Parks: I know a guy in the Astros front office. I'll ask around....
Hank (Atlanta): re: Jason Parks: ~Greinke will sign with the Braves.
Would you elaborate on this? It means something, right? Is Greinke already tired of Disney land? Good for Braves but I thought Braves weren't a luxury club to have this type of No.2 talent from FA market.
Jason Parks: I can't elaborate on it because my answer lacked depth. I have no idea how Greinke sees the world, much less the FA market. It's all just speculation until it isn't. I think Atlanta makes sense, but I really have no idea.
lewish (WA): I read a fascinating article today in BP by Jorge Arangure on Dominican players,skills, tools, and developement...that does the piece almost no justice, but have you scouted in the Dominican, and if you read the piece do you have any comments?
Jason Parks: I thought it was an excellent piece. I enjoyed it quite a bit. Jorge is a very talented writer, a very good source on the complexities of acquiring and developing Dominican talent, and a very #dry FIFA player.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): Excluding Perez, any pitcher in the Rangers system have the raw stuff to project as a 1 or a 2?
Jason Parks: Including Perez, I can't think of a single pitcher in the Rangers system that projects as a #1 or a #2 starter.
NC (SF): Not saying I disagree about Brandon Crawford, but regardless of how he looks doing it, he does seem to make the plays. I don't see much where I think "ooh, he coulda/shoulda had it". Am I just missing the ones a better SS would make? Or is it "he's really good, but he makes it look so hard we need to dock him a few points"?
The range of opinions on his defense seems awfully wide, and I'm not able to judge why...
Jason Parks: How he looks while executing his craft plays a very large role on how we determine the worth of the play in relation to other plays. It's a visual connection that occurs whether or we think about it or not. The fluidity and #grace of a particular athletic movement can convince us (based on the visual understanding of those movements) that one action took more effort or ability than the other, when in reality, one just appeared to look more difficult because of the visual photographs we take and how we relate those images to a scale of difficulty.
stewbies (Rochester, NY): Astros farmhand LHP Patrick Urckfitz is teaching my 6 year old baseball this fall. A super nice guy. Is he a legitimate prospect?
Jason Parks: Is he a legitimate prospect? He's a super nice guy.
Scott (Seattle): Last year, KG said Jarrod Parker "could be a 4, could be a 2." Did his 2012 lead you to believe he's more likely to be a 2 than a 4?
Jason Parks: Yes. He was better than I thought he could be.
Kevin Smith (FunWash, AR): Are you moving to Dekalb for your new job?
Jason Parks: No. I live in a real city
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth, TX): Neftali with a knuckler?
Why hasn't anyone capable of 95MPH developed a knuckleball? I know the pitch would be easy to recognize but the change in velocity from 95 to 75 could be devastating right? not to mention the ability to go deeper into games?
Jason Parks: Because pitchers who can throw 95 mph don't need a knuckleball. It's not exactly an easy pitch to just throw into an arsenal for shits and giggles.
webberoo11 (Las Vegas): Is Deshields blocked at 2b? What is the likelyhood that he moves to CF?
Jason Parks: DeShields has played 24 games at the High-A level. He isn't blocked by anybody right now. Players aren't blocked until they are actually ready for the majors and don't have a path to the level.
Bryant (San Diego): What is the rarest tool/position combination in baseball?
Jason Parks: Plus hitters with plus defense behind the plate.
modofacid (philly): Jason, any soccer sites you are partial to?
Jason Parks: I have several bookmarked, but I dont go crazy unless its transfer rumors, etc. I prefer to read World Soccer or 442 in magazine form.
xxx (yyy): what player surprised you, based on the scouting reports/tidbits you received on him?
Jason Parks: I'll start with the Astros because I just finished researching their system. Rio Ruiz. Um, he has some fans and they love the potential of his bat. I wasn't expecting that sort of love.
Hoegaarden (San Jose, CA): Have you seen Addison Russell play? Any thoughts on him based on your observations or from talks with others in the know?
Jason Parks: Yes. He's very, very good. He can really swing it. Very instinctual hitter.
Eddy (Bosnia): I'm about ready to give up on Lindor as my The Next Profar. How high is the offensive ceiling really? Is he going to derive most of his value defensively? How do you feel about a Renteria-esque comp for the bat?
Jason Parks: Why does he have to be the next Profar? The offensive ceiling isn't the same as Profar's. I don't see the same type of power potential, but he should be able to hit for average, use the gaps for doubles, and steal some bases. Put that offensive package on a 6+ defender at shortstop and you have something special.
jlarsen (chicago): Which "big-name" prospect seems most likely destined for failure, either due to glaring problems that are overlooked due to overall product or bad org. that he's currently on?
Jason Parks: Failure usually has more to do with the player than the org. Most fail to reach their ultimate ceiling. I think Gary Sanchez is a big-name prospect that could flameout. He has a huge ceiling and I love the bat, but the next report I get hyping his makeup will be the first. You want to know why talented players most often fail? Makeup, or lack thereof.
Roy Munson (1978 Iowa State bowling champ): Do you think Shelby Miller's pure stuff is good enough for him to have a chance of developing into a true ace?
Jason Parks: Nope. It takes more than just stuff. Being an ace is about putting it all together and being consistent with the high-end results over an extended period of time. You dont flash being an ace. You either are an ace or you aren't an ace. It's not a casual label. Aces are bred from their own history.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth): About Byron Buxton, can he be Eric Davis?
Jason Parks: Probably not.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth): Does Profar live up to the hype in 2013? Assuming Hamilton walks, Profar starts correct?
Jason Parks: Profar has already lived up to the hype by being the best prospect in baseball and reaching the majors as a teenager. Hamilton will most likely walk, but I don't think that guarantees Profar anything.
stewbies (Rochester, NY): What's Casey Kelly's ceiling?
Jason Parks: Solid #3 starter
lewish (WA): plus hitter with plus defense behind the plate...Salvador Perez potentially?
Jason Parks: Yes. Perez is awesome.
temple (madison wi): I've read a few articles commending Kyle Gibson. I would really like to know how you see his ceiling.
Jason Parks: I see a #4 type. Mature arm, versatile arsenal, good command profile. Lacks intense stuff, but should develop into a quality major league starter. I just don't see a bigger ceiling.
frampton (Oakland): Re the (way) earlier question about long swings, check out film of Willie Mays some time. For a guy 5'11", that was some long swing, and he did better than all right.
Jason Parks: Willie Mays also loves pancakes and makes his own syrup
utdavidson (Austin): Because of positional strength and organizational need, would a D'Arnaud for Profar swap be close enough in value for both teams to consider? Would you consider it if you were in the Rangers organization? Do you still have that sweet Brooklyn beard that makes you look like cool Nate Silver?
Jason Parks: Brooklyn beard? The rest of the world scares me. I don't currently have a beard, but I dislike shaving, so I assume one will pop up soon. It will look the same as my Texas beard looked when I lived in Texas. (That is, before Texas outlawed the beard and they were forced to move to Brooklyn to avoid persecution).
joseconsuervo (America): This chat is so #wet
Jason Parks: I'm starting to get hungry and tired of using my fingers
Ed (MN): Can Parmelee be. a big league contributer for the Twins?
Jason Parks: I could be a big league contributor to the Twins
Guillermo (Montevideo, Uruguay): When you talk abot Profar power, do you see him consistently hittin 30+ bombs in the majors? Less? More?
Jason Parks: Less. Big average, legit OBP skills, 20+ HR potential, lots of doubles and triples.
NC (SF): (Not arguing - still just really curious)...
On Brandon Crawford, again: isn't the point to "make all the plays", whatever "all" is? It's great if you can look like Ozzie while doing it, but do we care if you don't if the result is the same? Or is the concern that while he might be fine now, it can't last?
Jason Parks: Yes. Making plays is what ultimately counts, but my point was about the visual connection we form with certain movements and how that influences how we relate and compare the difficulty and subsequent value of said play. Making the plays is all that actually matters, but we don't watch baseball games just to see the end result of actions. We watch baseball to judge the process and execution of those actions as well.
sykklone (IA): Higher ceiling, Trevor Story or David Dahl?
Jason Parks: Dahl for me
Milby (SF): If Rey Ordonez and Ozzie Smith met on a Mediteranian cruise and 9 months later had a left handed baby boy, would anyone give him a legit chance to stay at SS?
Jason Parks: This actually happened. Sadly, the kid washed out of baseball before the little league level, so we will never know what might have been.
Mike ('Merica): Eric Davis.... how good could that dude have been if he were able to stay healthy?
Jason Parks: HOF. First ballot.
myshkin (Santa Clara, CA): So far, the public reports on Jorge Soler seem at least cautiously optimistic. I know it's too soon to say anything definitive, but are the industry folks who thought his contract was way above his worth changing their minds some?
Jason Parks: He could be a monster that scares opposing pitchers like Daniel Craig scares my heterosexuality
temple (Madison, Wi): Have you seen Puig play? The Dodgers paid enough that they have to think he is going to be a top talent. Do you think he will play in the MLB this year.
Jason Parks: I walked by him during the fall instructional league, but that's it. He could be very good, yes. I can't speak to his developmental timetable, but the reports have been promising, so he might be able to move fast.
Steve (Winnipeg): How much has Daniel Norris' stock fallen over the past year? With the plus stuff still kicking around and the delivery issues, the similarities to Aaron Sanchez in some regards seem high.
Jason Parks: He's young. His stock is going to ebb and flow as he goes thru the developmental process.
David (Va Beach): The Cubs have a ton of 2B prospects right now. Between Watkins, Torreyes, Amaya, and Bruno, which one has the best chance to be the Cubs longterm answer? Or is Alcantara or Hernandez a better bet, to be moved off SS and wind up there?
Jason Parks: There aren't many 2B prospects, in my opinion. There are failed SS, but the stand alone 2B type isn't all that common. They have to be able to hit to have a lot of value, and the above list isn't all that promising to me. I've always liked Torreyes, but I saw more of a utility profile than a major league regular
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth): Pound for Pound, loudest contact from a prospect? Not the hulks like Sano etc.
? who am I missing?
Jason Parks: Taveras had the loudest contact I heard in 2012
stewbies (Rochester, NY): Had you actually heard of Patrick Urckfitz before my question?
Jason Parks: No.
Chris (between the keyboard and the chair): More on Salvador Perez...I remember you saying a couple of chats ago that every time you see him he shows you something you didn't think he could do. Why do you think that absolutely nobody thought he could be this, or anything close to this? He was in no way a hyped prospect. The Royals were clearly quite high on him, but to the prospect-y guys that was only so much team hype for it's own guy.
Jason Parks: Some guys you just need to spend more time watching in order to get it. Some players dont do it day after day, game after game, so you only catch flashes and sometimes [we] write those flashes off as just flashes, rather than previews of fire. Orgs know their talent, and it was clear that the Royals were aware of what they had in Perez early on.
Kevin (San Diego): I know KG loved him, but how did you feel about Yoenis Cespedes prior to 2012? Did he exceed your expectations, and is there an MVP candidate in there?
Jason Parks: I didn't think anything about Cespedes before 2012. After watching him ST, I knew he was legit, but I didn't think he would be this good this soon. He needs to refine the offensive approach, but the power is so legit that he does have MVP type of promise.
Mike (Utica, NY): You going to try to break the chat record?
Jason Parks: I'm not sure what the BP chat record is.
R.A. Wagman (Toronto): What Performance enhancing drug are you using to achieve this level of finger stamina and mental durability acuity?
Jason Parks: I have #want
sykklone (IA): Clayton Blackburn or Kyle Crick?
Jason Parks: Blackburn
rangerfans2 (RyanW): Can you recall a specific story where a prospect you were watching that put you an awe, knowing you were looking at a future superstar?
Jason Parks: Every time I watch Jorge Alfaro take BP or infield. He's a star if he wants it.
Mike (Utica, NY): True or false, will Trout and Harper win multiple MVP's by the time they are done?
Jason Parks: Sure. Why not. It doesn't matter, but they both have the talent to win multiple awards.
Facebook (Myspace): At what level would Billy Butler be the best choice to play SS? D1 College? High school? Rec league softball?
Jason Parks: The Waffle House Company Team
Steve (Oregon): Any opinion on that Chris Young Heath Bell Cliff Pennington trade? And is Yordy Cabrera worth paying attention to?
Jason Parks: Interesting move for the Dbacks. I'm not high on Cabrera. I don't believe in the stick.
PointNiner (MissTheShow): Can you get Goldstein to come back just to do the podcast with you? I don't even care if you don't talk about baseball.
Jason Parks: I talk to KG on a very regular basis on a variety of subjects, so I'm all set.
mj (boston): Some thoughts on Jackie Bradley Jr? Is he a top 3 prospect in the Sox' system?
Jason Parks: I really like him. BP's Chris Mellen has written some excellent reports on Bradley, and based on what I've seen and what I've collected from Chris, yes, I'm quite high on Bradley.
utdavidson (Austin): Would you ever date a woman who ate a pickle from the ice cream truck? What if her nickname was Sweet Pea?
Jason Parks: I'm not really looking to date ever again. That's why I got married. Dating is lame shit.
knockoutking (East Texas): what player(s?) impressed you the most in Fall Instructs?
Jason Parks: Royals RHP Miguel Almonte was excellent. I really liked him. Dodgers SS Corey Seager was also impressive. He will end up at 3B, but he can really swing the bat.
OscarsJockStrap (Undies): Do you think he is large, xl or XXL?
Jason Parks: I like that the location is "Undies"
Mike (Utica, NY): must be a boring evening in NYC for you to stay on this long?
Jason Parks: I'm flying to Florida for the Perfect Game tournament, so I wanted to offer up a lengthy chat today.
Milby (SF): I am still waiting for a situation where - with no one on base - Joe Maddon pulls an extreme shift, and the catcher stands in the field of play.
Jason Parks: Where the catcher crouches behind the pitcher. Post-modernist shifting
pat (kc): just got my Sal Perez authentic jersey in the mail....It makes me feel #wet
Jason Parks: As it should.
I have 207 questions still sitting in the queue. What the hell is wrong with you people?
ChoppertoChipper (Edmonton): Enjoying all your twittering and writing, it keeps getting better and better. I miss your voice. If only there was some way for me to hear it. Could you please provide updates for the following: New Bear Coat, A new potential podcast, is rum and OJ still the drink of choice, will the full frontal BP calendar be available in time to stuff stockings? Thanks.
Jason Parks: Thanks. I'm working on the full-frontal calendar. It's a tough sell.
Nelly (OK): What is Mike Montgomery's biggest issue, in your opinion, other than trying to look like a robot on the mound instead of just letting the ball fly with his natural throwing motion...
Jason Parks: Well, the issue you mentioned is pretty legit. I think a lot of Montgomery's issues are mental. I've seen the stuff look solid-avg to plus, but the execution just wasn't there. It was a bit schizophrenic
JAC34 (Charlotte): Am I the only one who can see a resemblance between the swings of Ken Griffey Jr and Robinson Cano?
Jason Parks: I've never thought about it, but a pretty swing is a pretty swing, and those are both pretty swings.
Theo (Texas): All things considered, Tom Milone was pretty good in 2012 even without any velocity. Can he keep that up?
Jason Parks: I don't think so.
Will (Rochester): What are your feelings about Gregory Polanco and Alen Hanson? Who has the better chance of reaching his respective ceiling? Also, do you see any other prospects making a jump like that in the Pirates system this coming year?
Jason Parks: Both are legit prospects, although I'm not sold on Hanson at SS. Polanco, on the other hand, I can buy in CF. I'm not sure if I'd rank either player above Josh Bell, who I feel has the highest offensive ceiling of the three. Very close. All three are top ten guys in that system.
Gary LaPlante (Mean streets of South Windsor, CT): Why do baseball players have horrible taste in music? It seems as if baseball has a higher percent of bad taste in music when compared to the general population. Am I just imagining this? If I'm not why is this? Is it because most baseball players are your typical jock stereotype, and jocks as a whole have bad taste in music?
Jason Parks: Because [most] professional athletes don't have time to spend their formative years smoking weed and getting into cool music at their leisure. They listen to what it is played on the radio or at stadiums. They don't have time to develop and refine much taste if they want to get ahead on the field. Again, not all of them fit into this box.
Beau (SF): Who has the better career: Pete Kozma or Joe Panik?
Jason Parks: Kozma.
You People (BP Chat): Everything is wrong with us.
Jason Parks: As we approach hour #6, I'm losing steam.
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth): Carlos Correa.....Manny Machado ceiling?
Jason Parks: What is Manny Machado's ceiling? We don't know that yet.
JohnRonB (Chicago): Who's fastball graded higher, Rick Vaughn or Nuke LaLoosh? My money is on Wild Thing...
Jason Parks: I dont know. Vaughn's FB looked a bit straight. I preferred LaLoosh's mechanics; lots of moving parts, but the late hand break added some deception to go along with the big velo.
mrenick (Little rock): So what do you see as Machado's probable ceiling?
Jason Parks: He's going to hit for average (.285+) and power (25+ bombs) to go along with quality defense on the left-side of the infield. He's a superstar if he stays healthy and consistent.
Tim Carvin (NYC): This chat is still going on? That is downright Patriotic.
Jason Parks: #America
rangerfans2 (Fort Worth): Why is Josh Bell being overlooked?
Jason Parks: Because he didn't play very well or very often in 2012. It's not personal.
pat (kc): any other surprises on the Royals top ten?
Jason Parks: Yes. I'm going to grant Hosmer eligibility and rank him #1 in order to build up his confidence and prove to him that I care.
Mike (Utica, NY): Where would Jose Fernandez rank in your tier of pitching prospects?
Jason Parks: Pretty high. Not a top ten talent for me (yet), but in that next crop of guys that are still on the way up.
JohnRonB (Chicago): You're the best Parks, keeping the #want strong with the additional hours of the chat. #respect
Jason Parks: Please send help.
iorg34 (Jalalabad): Think Brett Jackson will have a career as a starting outfielder?
Jason Parks: I do. He will always wear the swing and miss like a birthmark, but if he can show some power and better on-base skills, he should offer enough defensive value to stay in a major league lineup.
Guillermo (Montevideo, Uruguay): This chat rocks
Jason Parks: This chat sucks and I hate my life.
Or (Denton): Is Mike Olt a Ranger next April?
Jason Parks: Yes.
Brian (Texas): Now that Ozzie has some free time, he might be on board for a podcast...
Jason Parks: I'd love to do a podcast with Ozzie.
Andrew (IL): As someone who was very high on Christian Villanueva while in the Rangers organization, would you be able to touch on what type of player he the Cubs got in return? Does he have 1st division potential? Would he be able to handle 2nd base?
Jason Parks: I've seen him play 2B, but I think [athletically], he is a better fit for 3B. He has a very good glove, with clean actions, and a strong arm. His bat isn't all that special, but he has good hands and shows quality bat speed. I don't think he's big batting average type, but he might be able to achieve the .265-.270 range, with 10-15 bombs. Not a first division talent, but a steady major league regular if everything clicks. Big makeup as well. Works very hard. Good kid.
Jason Parks (brain): why do you hate me?
Jason Parks: Because you are my best friend and the biggest creep I know
raygu1 (Burlington, NJ): is this still going on?
Jason Parks: Nope. I'm calling it quits. 175 questions were answered, and over 375 were asked.
Jason Parks: You guys brought serious #want. Many thanks for participating. I'll be on a scouting trip for a week, and then the BP prospect rankings will start after the WS. You will be seeing a lot of me. Tom Verducci's face on a sweet pillow and I'm out.