Scouting reports are a snapshot in time. Hours after I posted 20 such reports earlier in the week, I wanted to go back and fix a few. Not because I spelled something wrong (that’s what editors are for), but because I got a few calls and e-mails and my perceptions of a couple players changed. That’s the tough part about publishing something so final; knowing when to let it go.
Normally, I would just let the last article be a snapshot in time of what I knew at that point and whatever revisions I collected would be pointed out the next time I wrote. The problem is, sometimes there’s a glaring error that becomes apparent quickly and needs special consideration. In this case, it was shortstop Jean Carlos Batista. A couple e-mails to scouts weren’t returned until after the article was posted, and the gap between what I had been told before and what I learned after posting the article was big enough that I wanted to point it out separately. I had Batista as a solid all-around shortstop that figured to get a bonus in the low six figures, then more scouts checked in and I realized I was underselling him by a large margin.
Scouts look at Batista’s projectable frame (6’1, 170) and smooth switch-hitting stroke and mention Carlos Beltran, seeing possibly 20 home runs annually coming down the road. They mention his speed, glove, arm, and footwork are all solid, allowing you to easily project him as a shortstop at higher levels. One even noted that he looks like Derek Jeter in the face (the version that was a good defensive shortstop, no doubt). This type of five-tool talent gets well over the $150,000-$300,000 bonus range I referenced in the prior article. After consulting some sources, it appears Batista already has multiple offers over $500,000 on the table, and there is legitimate chatter that he will get over $1 million when all is said and done. The Dodgers, Rangers, A’s, Indians, and Yankees are believed to be the front-runners.
Who are the other players who have changed my opinion? I’d rather not point them out now; this post is about how I’m always getting a slightly better feel for the talent and pointing out one big example. I will say that there are two guys from Monday’s article that are trying to drop their agents, one because his market seems to be dropping, and another because his market seems to finally be rising and he wants a better negotiator for his big pay day. There’s never a boring day in the July 2nd signing period.