It is that time again! Time for Batavia, Johnson City and the Gulf Coast League to get started. And it is time for me (after the jump) to throw some cold water on any excitement you may have generated for getting to see the stats on these new (and old) players.
Short season results can be aberrational for many reasons. We have had players like Nick Longmire who have torn it up in short season ball, but have not even come close to those results in the following years.
There is also the issue of the growth curve for these players. Most of them are between 18 and 22 years old and are still growing as baseball players. These results (and scouting reports) could be totally null and void in a few short years or even months. Some of these players, including 2nd round pick Carson Kelly, have started professional baseball within a month of their high school graduation.
Additionally, the competition in these games is often poor, and usually variable from pitcher to pitcher and batter to batter. The GCL is basically an organized scrimmage. Some players are playing against other players that are 4 years their junior.
I’m not telling you to stop checking the box scores and the DFR, but just be mindful of the early numbers. The numbers are part of a much larger picture, that we have not gotten all of yet. A few of these players will last the trials and tribulations of the minor league development system and will be able to get to the majors in or around five years from now.