This wasn’t from this week but I had missed it. Pinstripe Alley did a talk with John Sickels who covers all the minors for SB nation. He had some interesting things to say about the minors.
Over at Fangraphs Marc Hulet did a recap of 2014 Yankees minor league system. Here is the highlights from Marc.
A Minor Review of 2014: YankeesThe Graduate: Shane Greene, RHP: Greene is proof that scouting is not an exact science. The right-hander flew under the radar for five minor league seasons due to inconsistent results. His stuff took a step forward in 2014 and he could be in the Yankees’ starting rotation for years to come thanks to his combination of velocity, movement and sink on his offerings.
The Riser: Luis Severino, RHP: Severino’s mix of velocity and above-average control allowed the 20-year-old hurler to fly through three minor league levels in 2014: Low-A, High-A and Double-A. I was big on this pitching prospect prior to the 2014 season and ranked him as the 11th best prospect in the system but I definitely didn’t expect him to take such a huge step forward. He could reach the Majors in 2015.
The Tumbler: Mason Williams, OF: Williams’ light was shining bright after the 2012 season but he stumbled in 2013 while splitting the year between High-A and Double-A. He returned to Double-A in 2014 and saw him OPS bottom out at a paltry .593 in 128 games. Interestingly, strikeouts are not a major issue for Williams; rather, it’s his lack of hard contact, as well as poor pitch selection.
The ’14 Draft Pick: Jacob Lindgren, LHP: Lindgren won’t be the first 2014 draftee to the Majors (the Royals Brandon Finnegan took care of that) but he likely will be one of the first three to five players to arrive — assuming he stays healthy. His nasty stuff could make the Yankees’ bullpen very scary in less than a year’s time when he complements David Robertson and Dellin Betances.
The Lottery Ticket: Luis Torrens, C: Torrens, 18, was on my radar at the beginning of 2014 when I ranked him as the 15th-best prospect in the system and he’s attracted even more attention after a solid offensive season in the New-York-Penn League. He needs additional polish behind the plate but he threw out 42% of runners trying to steal on him at that level.
Tucker Blair over at Baseball Prospectus did a chat and he discussed Greg Bird plus linked to his eye witness account from earlier in the year.
Pete (Detroit): Simliar question about Greg Bird and the AFL. I read your eyewitness report. Yankees fans may look at him and see Mark Teixeira 2.0 … that may be insane, but my question is that his stats seem to be better than a 45 OFP second division player?
Tucker Blair: Bird is an interesting one. I think it is safe to say I would be on the lower end when it comes to valuing Bird. When I saw him at Double-A, it was a first-base only prospect with average bat speed and a swing that was more brauny than fast-twitched. I had concerns about the discipline against off-speed. However, this was my snapshot in that series, and I have talked to other scouts and BP members that had varying opinions on Bird. This is the most interesting aspect of player evaluation, as we all see players at different stages and are likely to have differing opinions. I have grown on Bird even since reading that report, but I still think he is more of a second division talent rather than a truly impact 1B.