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Brian Johnson

Born: 12/07/1990 (Age: 24)
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Height: 6' 4" Weight: 235
High 3/4 left-hander; average arm speed; easy arm action with full extension. Full windup; clean hand break letters high; medium pace; repeats delivery very well but not very athletic. Tough pick up; deceptive front side with high glove arm and hides ball. Mature, durable frame with no projection left; good size and pitches with downward plane. Works exceptionally fast between pitches; throws strikes; keeps hitters off balance.
Evaluator Al Skorupa
Report Date 06/22/2015
Affiliate Pawtucket Red Sox (AAA, Red Sox)
Dates Seen 04-27-2015; 05-14-2015; 06-08-2015
OFP/Risk 50/Very Low
Realistic 50; #4 Starter
MLB ETA Late 2015
Video No
Pitch Type Present Grade Future Grade Sitting Velocity Peak Velocity Report
Fastball 50 55 86-91 92 Above average life; sink and tail; good plane; induces weak contact as well as missing bats low; flattens out when thrown up and very hittable. Excellent command; spots fastball both sides of the plate; regularly works in and out with fastball; plus feel for setting up hitters.
Curveball 50 55 69-75 1/7 downer; somewhat soft with inconsistent spin; average movement. Plus-plus command; plays with depth; locates as strike, chase, back door and back up; comfortable throwing to left-handers and right-handers in any count. Misses bats, but more a product of pitchability than raw stuff.
Slider 40 45 77-82 2/8 shallow slurve; varies in depth and sometimes acts more as a cutter; not a swing and miss offering. Throws for strikes, but doesn’t locate as well as CB.
Changeup 45 50 79-84 Sink and fade; above average life. Good feel for pitch; thrown with same arm speed as FB. Induces groundballs and weak contact.

50; #4 Starter. Johnson pitches with below average velocity, only solid average stuff and no real plus offering, but his feel for pitching and FB command causes both his individual pitches and whole profile to play up. Johnson could have a long career as a command and control back end starter, but without a big fastball or an out-pitch, Johnson’s margin for error is small on any given day.

Luiz Gohara

Born: 07/31/1996 (Age: )
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Height: 6' 3" Weight: 210
Huge frame, listed at 210 but looks closer to 250; future weight gain could put undue pressure on legs; high leg kick; 3/4 arm slot; upper body often out of sync with legs; head stays balanced; splays front leg between stride and foot strike; plus arm speed; loose arm; release point varies; hides the ball well; stays on top of the ball; falls downhill; spine tilt; does not field position well.
Evaluator Brendan Gawlowski
Report Date 06/30/2015
Affiliate Everett AquaSox (Short Season, Mariners)
Dates Seen 6/18/15
OFP/Risk 60/High
Realistic 50; backend starter or setup reliever
MLB ETA 2019
Video No
Pitch Type Present Grade Future Grade Sitting Velocity Peak Velocity Report
FB 60 70 92-95 97 Sat 92-94, but regularly mixed in 95 and 96; easy velocity; downhill plane; stays on top of the ball; two-seamer features plenty of tail; poor command of the pitch, particularly from the stretch; showed ability to consistently throw fastball for strikes out of the windup; induced several whiffs in the zone; maintained velocity throughout six inning start.
CH 40 50 84-85 88 11-5 break; shallow depth; high velocity did not permit significant break; flashed average with more depth when thrown a bit slower; maintains arm speed well; can throw the curve for strikes.
CB 30 40 82-84 84 Best ones showed depth and tumbled out of the zone; inconsistent execution, as most of them were straight and elevated in the zone; arm speed consistent with the fastball; can throw change for strikes.

There's a tremendous gap between where Gohara is now, and where he could be if he learns to harness his potent offerings. He'll dominate short-season competition with just the fastball, but will need to work on his curve and changeup, both of which were generally flat and featured limited movement. Consistent arm speed gives him a good foundation to develop both pitches, but each will require considerable repetition to become average offerings. More importantly, he's shown a very limited ability to hit his spots, and will need to substantially improve his command if he's going to turn over a big league lineup multiple times. At 18-years-old he's young enough to improve in both facets, and I'm encouraged that he looked substantially better in my viewing this year than when I saw him last season.

Sean Manaea

Born: 02/01/1992 (Age: 23)
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Height: 6' 5" Weight: 235
Build: Tall and big frame; sturdy with efficient weight distribution; power bottom; physically maxed.

Mechanics: 3/4 arm slot; plus arm speed; slight stab; slight spine tilt; loose and easy arm; moderate drive; easy effort; clean landing; tempo issues; top and bottom half will get out of sync and cause command to waver; pickoff move is a weapon; delivery times ~1.40 – 1.50.

Evaluator Tucker Blair
Report Date 06/30/2015
Affiliate Wilmington Blue Rocks (High A, Royals)
Dates Seen 6/29/2015
OFP/Risk 60/Moderate
Realistic 55; No. 3/No. 4 SP
MLB ETA 2016
Video No
Pitch Type Present Grade Future Grade Sitting Velocity Peak Velocity Report
FB 55 60 91-94 94 Velocity: 60/60
Movement: 60/60
Command: 40/50

Consistent velo; downhill plane; boring action; deception; below-average command; works agressively in all four quadrants; loses command when he loses tempo and begins to open up and alter arm slot.

SL 55 60 82-85 86 Movement: 60/60
Command: 45/50

Replicates arm speed; sharp bite with tilt; deception; swing-and-miss chase pitch; release points currently inconsistent.

CH 45 50 83-84 84 Movement: 50/50
Command: 40/50

Replicates arm speed; moderate arm-side run; moderate tumble; feel and deception; uses against LHH and RHH; inconsistent release points and command; continued repetition and consistency in mechanics will help boost this offering.


Manaea has three average or better offerings and an easy delivery. He has a loose arm and hides the ball well out of his hand. He is an advanced arm and would be close to the majors if not for the shoulder injury that sidelined him earlier this season. The only issue is the command, which coincides with his ability to maintain tempo and hit the checkpoints in his delivery

Round Drafted: 1st round (34th overall), 2013. Signed for $3.55 million
Why: Seasoned arm with three potential average or better pitches; quick moving SP.

A.J. Reed

Born: 05/10/1993 (Age: 22)
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Height: 6' 4" Weight: 240
Primary Position: 1B
Secondary Position: DH
Behemoth; physically maxed-out 6-foot-4, 240 pounds; barrel-chested with broad, thick shoulders, wide base; Ruthian gait; sneaky coordination and athleticism despite limited mobility and dexterity.
Evaluator Wilson Karaman
Report Date 06/09/2015
Dates Seen 4/9, 4/11, 4/23, 4/25, 6/4, 6/5
Affiliate Lancaster JetHawks (High A, Astros)
MLB ETA Risk Factor OFP Realistic Role Video
2017 High 55 45/second-division 1B/DH, power bat off the bench No
Tool Future Grade Report
Hit 50 Wide base; balanced crouch; loose hands high to back ear and east/west waggle; indirect bat path takes an inconsistent shape; moderate, inconsistent load; short stride, generates significant torque and separation with front shoulder; bars arm when he over-extends; polished approach; disciplined in and out of zone, has plan of attack; willing to shorten swing and use the whole field; hangs in against same-handed pitching; tracks spin well; fringe-average raw hit tool should play up thanks to patience.
Power 65 Raw is double-plus, BP sessions are shows of force; elite strength, bat speed limited to above-average by slower hips and long rotation from deep coil; extends early, looks to drive on the outer half; LCF power alley, strength to muscle the ball out without ideal contact; can get to inner-third pitches; shows ability to get himself into position to maximize in-game power.
Baserunning/Speed 30 4.48, 4.36, and 4.44; moves better under way, well below-average pick-up and foot speed; takes good angles rounding first on doubles.
Glove 45 Below-average at present; moves decently around the bag with some notable mobility given size; below-average lateral quickness, footwork is raw, slow into cross-over; range is limited, average hands on balls he can reach, handles short-hops.
Arm 55 Plenty of arm strength, pure velocity may be 65; poor body control throwing on the move; slow to get into throwing position, footwork lags; potential for above-average utility with additional reps.

Reed is exactly the kind of advanced power bat that has little to prove in the California League. His raw strength and collegiate polish are a recipe for the kind of Herculean numbers he's produced thus far, and we're not going to be able to draw too many conclusions about his power utility until he gets challenged by better sequencing and fastball location at higher levels.

It's a three-true-outcome profile, and there will be ample swing-and-miss in his game thanks to an inconsistent load paired with modest bat speed. But Reed's approach is among the more advanced I've seen in the league and he shows a rare ability among hitters with his kind of raw power to get to it in games. He demonstrates patience, working counts well and attacking with a selective aggression. He's not passive and shows a willingness to both jump on early fastballs and take strikes on pitches he can't do damage on.

Though his large frame presents some limitations, Reed's intelligence in the box couples with his top-shelf strength to produce light-tower power. I'm bullish he can continue to bring a sizeable chunk of the power into games against advanced pitching and produce value despite a fringy defensive profile. The production will get discounted for the time being on account of both league and ballpark context, but Reed has legitimate impact offensive potential and projects as a potential middle-of-the-order bat in a good lineup.

Josh Hart

Born: 10/02/1994 (Age: 20)
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Height: 6' 1" Weight: 180
Primary Position: CF
Secondary Position:
Smaller frame; athletic build with quick-twitch muscles; looks smaller than listed height; very slight projection.
Evaluator Tucker Blair
Report Date 06/30/2015
Dates Seen 8 Games April – June 2015
Affiliate Frederick Keys (High A, Orioles)
MLB ETA Risk Factor OFP Realistic Role Video
2017 High 50 40; 4th OF/Below-Average Regular No
Tool Future Grade Report
Hit 50 Above-average bat speed; quiet hands; quick and loose wrists; moderate barrel control; drops back shoulder at times; mild load and leg lift; swing can become reliant on upper half; moderate approach that has improved since last season; ability to recognize spin; does not always make hard contact; struggles to barrel ball.
Power 20 Well-below average raw power; linear swing; swing is not conducive for power in any phase.
Baserunning/Speed 55 4.15 – 4.20 home to first; gets out of box poorly; agility and burst in OF; speed plays on basepaths.
Glove 60 Displays quick bursts and agility; efficient routes and reads; instinctual player; sometimes too aggressive.
Arm 40 Below-average arm strength; lacks carry; accurate throws.

Hart has a natural feel for hitting, and his barrel skills have been on display during my viewings. He is going to hit, but the lack of in-game power is a concern and will hinder his overall value. At the very least, Hart is going to provide value as a depth or bench option solely on the defense alone. There is still a wide gap between Hart's current and future hit tool.

Round Drafted: 1st round (37th overall), 2013. Signed for $1.45 million.
Why: Feel for hitting with the potential to hit for average and provide plus defense in CF.

Chance Sisco

Born: 02/24/1995 (Age: 20)
Bats: Left Throws: Right
Height: 6' 2" Weight: 193
Primary Position: C
Secondary Position:
Athletic build; slender frame with room for mild muscle growth.
Evaluator Tucker Blair
Report Date 06/30/2015
Dates Seen 6 Games April – June 2015
Affiliate Frederick Keys (High A, Orioles)
MLB ETA Risk Factor OFP Realistic Role Video
2017 High 50 40; Bench Player/Below-Average Regular No

Looks lazy at times but plays the game loose and easy. Does not work well with the Frederick pitching staff.

Tool Future Grade Report
Hit 55 Above-average bat speed; quiet upper half; loose and quick wrists; smooth and easy swing; moderate barrel control; minimal load; very mild leg lift; does not use bottom half; solid approach; recognizes spin; uses entire field and sprays the gaps.
Power 40 Average raw power; starting to backspin ball more; swing has slight leverage; will play down in-game a full grade.
Baserunning/Speed 40 4.32 home to first; fringe-average runner now; likely to lose a step with continued growth.
Glove 30 Footwork is a mess; athleticism does not correlate behind the dish; struggles to block pitches; stabs at pitches; looks to constantly be out of sync with his pitchers; no progression in two years of watching.
Arm 40 Average arm strength; plays down a grade in-game; choppy footwork and long release; pop times 2.10 – 2.20.

Sisco can't catch. After multiple viewings in consecutive seasons, I see no progression and little evidence that he will be able to handle a long-term role behind the plate in the majors. The bat has been the carrying tool, with a strong approach and contact ability. He's athletic enough to play 2nd, 3rd, or corner OF, where the bat will need to hit its potential for there to be value as a regular. The risk is still high with Sisco and he is a volatile prospect due to the defensive concerns.

Round Drafted: 2nd round (61st overall), 2013. Signed for $785,000
Why: Feel for hitting; potentially athletic enough to play C; chance for average or higher hit tool and power.

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FYI - on Gohara, either the Pitch Types or the descriptions are reversed for his off-speed pitches (the one labeled CH describes his curve, and the one labeled CB describes his changeup...)