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A writer who never saw Jack Morris pitch watches him in action for the first time and comes away even less convinced that the traditionalist case for his candidacy should earn him a call to Cooperstown.

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January 22, 2007 12:00 am

Future Shock: Kansas City Royals Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

Three fantastic prospects occupy the 1-3 slots, but is there any depth in the Royals' farm system?

Excellent Prospects
1. Alex Gordon, 3b
2. Billy Butler, lf/rf
3. Luke Hochevar, rhp
Very Good Prospects
None
Good Prospects
4. Chris Lubanski, of
5. Ryan Braun, rhp
Average Prospects
6. Danny Christensen, lhp
7. Brent Fisher, lhp
8. Tyler Lumsden, lhp
9. Mitch Maier, cf/rf
10. Jeff Bianchi, ss/2b













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January 19, 2007 12:00 am

Future Shock: Detroit Tigers Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

A young Detroit Tiger is pretty much Kevin's favorite animal. It's like a tiger and a prospect mixed, bred for its skills in baseball.

1. Cameron Maybin, cf
DOB: 4/4/87
Height/Weight: 6-3/200
Bats/Throws: R/R
Drafted: 1st round, 2005, North Carolina HS
What he did in 2006: .304/.387/.457 at Low A (445 PA)
The Good: On sheer athleticism and tools, Maybin is the total package, with a brutal home park hurting his nonetheless impressive numbers, as evidenced by road line of .333/.416/.517. Excellent hand-eye coordination and big time raw power that should begin to show up more in games as he improves his pitch recognition. Plus-plus runner who almost effortlessly covers the outfield from gap to gap and has a strong arm.
The Bad: Maybin has trouble with breaking balls, and is prone to chasing pitches, which led to a lofty strikeout total. He needs to improve the accuracy of his throws.
The Irrelevant: In 11 at-bats with the bases loaded, Maybin had three singles, a double, two grand slams and 16 RBI.
In A Perfect World, He Becomes: A healthy Eric Davis.
Gap Between What He Is Now, And What He Can Be: High. Maybin will likely start the year in the Florida State League, which means the power surge might have to wait another year.









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January 16, 2007 12:00 am

Future Shock: Cleveland Indians Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

With the young talent the Indians have on the big league roster, no wonder Kenny Williams is trying to restock his farm system.

Excellent Prospects
1. Adam Miller, rhp
Very Good Prospects
2. Chuck Lofgren, lhp
3. Trevor Crowe, cf
Good Prospects
4. John Drennen, cf
5. Brian Barton, cf
6. Tony Sipp, lhp
Average Prospects
7. Wes Hodges, 3b
8. Brad Snyder, rf
9. Rafael Perez, lhp
10. Scott Lewis, lhp














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January 9, 2007 12:00 am

Future Shock: Boston Red Sox Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

After dealing away last year's NL Rookie of the Year and a pitcher who threw a no-hitter, you can bet the Red Sox will be slower to part with the remaining jewels in their farm system.

Excellent Prospects
1. Clay Buchholz, rhp
Very Good Prospects
2. Jacoby Ellsbury, cf
3. Michael Bowden, rhp
Good Prospects
4. Jason Place, cf
5. Daniel Bard, rhp
6. Bryce Cox, rhp
Average Prospects
7. Dustin Pedroia, 2b
8. Craig Hansen, rhp
9. Kris Johnson, lhp
10. Justin Masterson, rhp














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January 5, 2007 12:00 am

Future Shock: Baltimore Orioles Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

Most of the top Orioles prospects weren't even born for the first three Star Wars movies, but that doesn't lower their ceilings.

Excellent Prospects
1. Brandon Erbe, rhp
2. Bill Rowell, 3b
Very Good Prospects
3. Pedro Beato, rhp
Good Prospects
4. Garrett Olson, lhp
Average Prospects
5. Radhames Liz, rhp
6. James Hoey, rhp
7. Nolan Reimold, rf
8. Kieron Pope, lf
9. Jeff Fiorentino, of
10. Pedro Florimon, ss














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December 19, 2006 12:00 am

Future Shock: Pittsburgh Pirates Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

Interesting arms give the Pirates hope that they'll contend at some point.

Excellent Prospects
1. Andrew McCutchen, cf
Very Good Prospects
2. Brad Lincoln, rhp
3. Brent Lillibridge, ss
Good Prospects
4. Neil Walker, c
Average Prospects
5. Todd Redmond, rhp
6. Brian Bixler, ss
7. Josh Sharpless, rhp
8. Mike Felix, lhp
9. John Van Benschoten, rhp
10. Justin Vaclavik, rhp














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December 1, 2006 12:00 am

Future Shock: Los Angeles Dodgers Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

Having a nine-RBI game at the major league level doesn't even make you one of the top three prospects in a stacked farm system.

Excellent Prospects
1. Clayton Kershaw, LHP
2. Andy LaRoche, 3B
3. Scott Elbert, LHP
Very Good Prospects
4. James Loney, 1B
Good Prospects
5. Jonathan Meloan, RHP
6. Josh Bell, 3B
7. Preston Mattingly, 1B
Average Prospects
8. Blake DeWitt, 2B/3B
9. Bryan Morris, RHP
10. Chin-Lung Hu, SS














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November 17, 2006 12:00 am

Future Shock: Cincinnati Reds Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

A farm system that is in no way deep can at least thrill Reds fans with the best prospect tandem in the game.

Excellent Prospects
1. Homer Bailey, RHP
2. Jay Bruce, RF
Very Good Prospects
3. Joey Votto, 1B
Good Prospects
4. Drew Stubbs, CF
5. Johnny Cueto, RHP
6. Travis Wood, LHP
7. Sean Watson, LHP
Average Prospects
8. Milton Loo, SS/3B
9. Chris Valaika, SS
10. Paul Janish, SS














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November 8, 2006 12:00 am

Future Shock: Arizona Diamondbacks Top Ten Prospects

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Kevin Goldstein

Kevin kicks off his winter prospect mongering by reviewing one of the most productive systems in the game.

Excellent Prospects
1. Chris Young, CF
2. Justin Upton, CF
3. Carlos Gonzalez, RF
Very Good Prospects
None
Good Prospects
4. Miguel Montero, C
5. Alberto Callaspo, 2B/SS
6. Dustin Nippert, RHP
7. Mark Reynolds, 1B/2B/LF
8. Brett Anderson, LHP
Average Prospects
9. Micah Owings, RHP
10. Emilio Bonifacio, 2B

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October 16, 2006 12:00 am

Future Shock: Monday Morning Ten-Pack

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Kevin Goldstein

Kevin checks out the newsmakers in the winter leagues.

\nMathematically, leverage is based on the win expectancy work done by Keith Woolner in BP 2005, and is defined as the change in the probability of winning the game from scoring (or allowing) one additional run in the current game situation divided by the change in probability from scoring\n(or allowing) one run at the start of the game.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_18 = 'Adjusted Pitcher Wins. Thorn and Palmers method for calculating a starters value in wins. Included for comparison with SNVA. APW values here calculated using runs instead of earned runs.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_19 = 'Support Neutral Lineup-adjusted Value Added (SNVA adjusted for the MLVr of batters faced) per game pitched.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_20 = 'The number of double play opportunities (defined as less than two outs with runner(s) on first, first and second, or first second and third).'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_21 = 'The percentage of double play opportunities turned into actual double plays by a pitcher or hitter.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_22 = 'Winning percentage. For teams, Win% is determined by dividing wins by games played. For pitchers, Win% is determined by dividing wins by total decisions. '; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_23 = 'Expected winning percentage for the pitcher, based on how often\na pitcher with the same innings pitched and runs allowed in each individual\ngame earned a win or loss historically in the modern era (1972-present).'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_24 = 'Attrition Rate is the percent chance that a hitters plate appearances or a pitchers opposing batters faced will decrease by at least 50% relative to his Baseline playing time forecast. Although it is generally a good indicator of the risk of injury, Attrition Rate will also capture seasons in which his playing time decreases due to poor performance or managerial decisions. '; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_25 = 'Batting average (hitters) or batting average allowed (pitchers).'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_26 = 'Average number of pitches per start.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_27 = 'Average Pitcher Abuse Points per game started.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_28 = 'Singles or singles allowed.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_29 = 'Batting average; hits divided by at-bats.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_30 = 'Percentage of pitches thrown for balls.'; xxxpxxxxx1160988517_31 = 'The Baseline forecast, although it does not appear here, is a crucial intermediate step in creating a players forecast. The Baseline developed based on the players previous three seasons of performance. Both major league and (translated) minor league performances are considered.

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February 22, 2004 12:00 am

Prospectus Roundtable: Top 50 Prospects, Part II

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Baseball Prospectus

Wright or Marte, Marte or Wright. I love 'em both. I've put Andy Marte ahead for the moment, because of the 10-month age difference and because scouts seem to like him a lot more, but I really feel strongly that David Wright's as complete a prospect as there is in the game. I'd love to hear comments comparing the two, and Nate, I'd love to see what their PECOTA comps look like. Nobody else is that impressive. Dallas McPherson put up some serious numbers last year, and while some of that was in The Hangar in Rancho Cucamonga, he hit .314/.426/.569 in Arkansas. He doesn't have a great defensive reputation, but it's not terrible either, and he clearly outhit everyone else on this list. I don't know if anyone else deserves Top 50 consideration. I know people love the Greek God of Walks, but he hit .165/.295/.248 in Triple-A, over a 32-game sample. Of course, his full-season OBP was still .446, so... Chad Tracy hit .324 and his defense took a big step forward, but he doesn't do much more than hit singles, and it was Tucson. I respect that he's had two good seasons in a row, but he was in El Paso in 2002, so I'm not sure that means anything either. And as much as I hyped him a year ago, I have to concede that Brendan Harris may not be quite as good as I thought he was. But he's still a better prospect than almost anyone gives him credit for.

Baseball Prospectus Top 40 Prospects Roundtables:
2003 Part II
2003 Part I
2001


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