The list is out. The Cardinals have 6:
This entry was posted on Tuesday, February 21st, 2012 at 1:26 pm and is filed under Prospect rankings. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
If Matt Adams rakes this year in AAA, it will be hard for BA to justify leaving him off a 2nd straight year.
The Rangers, A’s and Padres were the only other teams with 6 players on the list.
Swagerty and Rosenthal are both close to breaking into top 100 lists too. I’m not sure why the Cardinals are sticking with Swag out of the pen, but he seems to be gaining traction within the prospect community (outside of Cards fans). Rosenthal would probably get more hype if he’d been a higher pick. Plus, I would have to imagine either Tilson or McElroy,Jr. could be sniffing around these lists by next year if they are able to put together decent season in 2012.
Actually, it’s already been reported that Swagerty will continue to start. In case you missed it last week:
Is there a reason to take Swagerty out of the rotation other than fast tracking him to the majors? He’s had success as a starter and has three pitches, I don’t see the advantage of making him a reliever
There’s a couple reasons:
1. Before turning pro, he was a reliever, spot starter, and catcher. He is not used to a true starter’s workload, which is one of the reasons he was moved to the bullpen during last season.
2. Several scouts at the time of his drafting pointed to the effort in his delivery combined with his frame as something that would regulate him to the bullpen in the majors. I would say many still see him as a future closer. That delivery is another reason why they’re being careful with him; he’s more prone to fatigue than, say, Trevor Rosenthal.
Last season was his first in his career in which he was used a lot as a starter. His innings total last season was 93.1 in 36 games (12 starts). At Arizona State, his innings total was 58 in 2009 and 37 in 2010. Over 59 games appeared in those two seasons, Swagerty started a grand total of 5 games–all in 2009.
Nice post. On the other hand, Swags was effective as a starter last year. With 3 decent pitches and his propensity to challenge hitters, he looks to add value as a starter. He probably should continue developing as a starter, particularly since 2013 is murky after Shelby Miller when looking for replacements for Lohse/Westbrook.
It would be an easy move to the pen for him. The pen is, however, pretty crowded these days. Nice problem to have. Finally, if the pen is too crowded, Swags trade value would the sky high in 2014 were he to have significant success starting in ’13.
Actually, in the scouting reports that FR posted on Swagerty at the time of his drafting, scouts noted his aggressiveness would suit him better as reliever than starter (most likely in that he doesn’t pace himself well to handle a consistent starter workload).
As I noted, Swagerty had only 12 starts last season overall. That’s not a ton to go on performance-wise. In his first four starts, he pitched 6, 7, 6, and 6 innings. In his final 8 starts (2 at Quad Cities, 6 at Palm Beach), he pitched 5, 5, 5, 4.2, 5, 5, 5.2, and 6 innings. I’m not sure if he was in a piggyback rotation, but it’s obvious that they’re bringing him along slowly and that he really hasn’t been tested yet as a full-on starter.
By the time Swagerty is ready for the majors, the pen may be less crowded than the rotation. Relievers have a much shorter shelf-life than starters, and while Sanchez, Salas, Boggs, Scrabble, Motte and Lynn look to be good for a bit, Sanchez already has had shoulder trouble and Scrabble and Lynn are probably 2013 candidates for the rotation. Reifer and Cleto may be candidates to replace them, but Reifer is coming off of TJ surgery and Cleto needs to solve his command issues.
As a reliever, Swagerty is probably the best closer prospect the Cardinals have in their system. As a starter, he’s a project because of his mechanics and approach, but worth the risk because of his ability. Either way, he’s an interesting prospect, and it’s not surprising to see some talent evaluators really ranking him high.
I thought the idea with Swagerty was that he could be an effective back-of-the-rotation starter, but he would make it to the big leagues sooner as a relief pitcher and could be a closer down the road.
Jim Callis said Lynn was close to landing in the top-100:
Is that what that tweet says?
Looks like it to me.
McElroy was a pretty big reach in the 3rd round. No way he makes any top 100 lists next year unless he has a MASSIVE season which, given his rawness, seems unlikely even in short-season ball. Probably much more likely he sinks without trace in all honesty.
Totally agree. Don’t understand the McElroy hype. Reminds me of the Darryl Jones pick. Could turn out great if he puts it all together but chances are he wont.
Of course it would not be surprising to see them break Swags in as a reliever on the major league level and try Lynn/scrabble in a starting role, since recent Cardinal teams have used the bullpen as an apprenticeship.
I am always a little surprised when Cox and Jenkins are rated ahead of Adams
I find it easier to justify rating Jenkins higher, simply because he’s a pitcher with tremendous upside. However, I would rate Adams ahead of Cox at this point. If Adams were the 1st-round pick instead of Cox, would they be rated differently? I would have to say yes.
The problem is that Adams has to OPS about .100 points higher at the big league level to make up for the position differential.
I see your point, however, I would argue we don’t even know what position Cox will play in the majors. This is just my opinion, but I think Adams is a safer bet to contribute at the big league level. Therefore, I would rate him higher than Cox.
Baseball America believes that Cox will stay at third and be average defensively, so obviously, that’s not an issue for them.
Also, Cox actually has options if 3rd base doesn’t work for him. Adams doesn’t–he can’t play any other position other than 1st base, so if he fails to hit enough to be league average overall, he’s pretty much a DH prospect, which won’t put him ahead of guys like Cox or Jenkins.
I understand that Adams is limited to 1B/DH. Still taking him over Cox, though. I could be dead wrong, but I believe in Adams more.
…well…that’d be true if Cox and Adams were considered equally adept defensively at their respective positions; according to the numbers at Hardballtimes, Cox was a near-disaster with the glove last year, and Adams was above average at the cold corner. (B-Prospectus has Big Matt rated a fine gloveman, as well.)
I attended approximately 15 games in Springfield last year. Cox isn’t great shakes with the glove, but he seemed average. I’d also say he improved over the course of his time in Springfield. ‘Near disaster’ is off base IMHO.
Adams moves really well for a big guy (in the field and on the bases). Even though it understandably may be hard to believe without seeing it, I would rate him above average defensively at first base. He’s not, and probably never will be, elite, but doesn’t have defensive shortcomings in my mind.
I’ve seen Adams in person and his footwork at first was abominable. He does run well but I would strongly disagree with him being above average defensively.
Reply fail. My comment was supposed to be a response to Carioca.
Why the hell is Yu Darvish considered a prospect? I understand he meets the “rookie” requirements, but he’s already played in a big league league. Profar over Miller? Besides the fact that the ETA is ridiculously optimistic, he’s a smallish SS who really hasn’t hit great. He’s hit decently well, but not great. I don’t understand how you can rank a 19 year old shortstop that is two to three years away from being ready and played slightly above-average at Low A ball over a 21 year old pitcher who dominated AA ball last year.
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