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June 22, 2012 9:10 am

The Prospectus Hit List: Friday, June 22

1

Jason Wojciechowski

Rangers at the top, Padres at the bottom, extremely important Xavier Nady factoid in the middle.

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April 24, 2012 3:00 am

Western Front: Five Giant Themes

11

Geoff Young

What do Bruce Bochy, Xavier Nady, Brandon Belt, Tim Lincecum, Barry Zito, Matt Cain, Mike Krukow, and Mark Grant have in common?

Nady, Bochy, Belt
My wife and I drove from San Diego to Emeryville last weekend to make an appearance at the final stop on the BP2012 book tour. The event was a blast because, really, what beats hanging out with friends, talking about baseball? Watching a game, I suppose. Or playing. If we'd had people sign waivers, maybe we could have gotten a wiffle ball game going. But probably not.

I had prepared trivia questions in case we ran out of things to discuss. We didn't, but since I've already written the questions, here are their answers. They all have a Bay Area theme:


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The Indians' pair of deals do them all sorts of good, the Pirates finally get off the pot, while the Dodgers have an answer, but may need to ask another question.

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As mentioned in yesterday's Daily Prospectus, one of the best perks of an Arizona Fall League trip is seeing the players up close. Watching a Josh Karp curve fall off the table or seeing Chip Ambres staying back long enough to drive the ball enhances a fan's enjoyment of the game immensely. With that in mind, here are a few player observations from my recent trip to Arizona.

As mentioned in yesterday's Daily Prospectus, one of the best perks of an Arizona Fall League trip is seeing the players up close. Watching a Josh Karp curve fall off the table or seeing Chip Ambres staying back long enough to drive the ball enhances a fan's enjoyment of the game immensely.

With that in mind, here are a few player observations from my recent trip to Arizona. I won't be covering everyone here. Some guys I didn't get to see, others I barely saw, others didn't interest me enough to cover. If you have questions about AFL players not mentioned here, just drop me a line. Also keep in mind, the comments come equipped with the standard caveats of small sample size, personal observation bias and my future as a scout being dubious at best. Still, watching some of the top prospects in person formed a more complete picture in my mind, as I hope it does for you.

Catchers

          Justin Huber (NYM): Didn't look all that comfortable at the plate for the most part, though he did nearly take Luke Hudson's head off with one shot up the middle. Fairly agile for a big man behind the plate. His defense is the best part of his game right now, though he's shown some power in the minors. One of the youngest players at AFL at age 20, so there's hope for development. Still, needs plenty of work on his offensive game.

Kevin Cash (Tor): All-world defensive player. In one game, I got a complete look at his skills. Though it was a botched hit-and-run, he gunned down a would-be basestealer by a mile, confirming the lightning-quick release we'd heard about in the scouting sessions. On one play, he didn't properly block a ball with a runner on third, the only negative I'd seen. Cash then sprinted to the backstop, and sliding, from his knees, falling away from home, fired a knee-high strike to the pitcher covering for the out. His bat was another story. Seemed to have trouble pulling the ball, and showed a long swing for someone with only moderate power. Fully recovered from the broken hand he suffered in August, he should be the Jays' starting catcher next season on his defense alone, even if it's not by Opening Day.

John Buck (Hou): A masher. Showed good pop to left and right field, hitting the ball hard several times. He rarely walked in AA, something he'll need to correct to take the next step. Still, he'd be a better choice than Brad Ausmus tomorrow at 1/16 the price.

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