Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Top Prospects Series - Pitchers

Get ready for a trend down in scoring the next few seasons - there are a LOT of really good pitchers starting their ML careers soon. Lots of close calls here - the poll on this one should be interesting.

1. Eswalin Camacho, SP (SEA, Sea 16 IFA - $20MM): I'm just guessing here since my ADV is useless and there's no development pattern to go by, but with just a little improvement in ratings from where he is now he'll be our top pitching prospect. Pinpoint control, almost un-hittable for righties, and a broad assortment of good (not great pitches). If he has weaknesses (and I'm not sure he does), it's that he's a mere mortal against lefties and he's somewhat a flyball tosser. ** Started writing this before he was promoted, so technically I guess he's not a prospect. But it's my post so I can break the rules if I want.

2. Keith Caldwell, SP (PIT, Sea 15 #1 pick): only 2 pro years and he'd be a quality ML pitcher now. Might end up with both splits 90+...4-seamer and cut fastball are grade A. Will rack up some pretty good strikeout numbers. Although his control will be OK, it's what will keep him from being the best of this crop.

3. Albert Velazquez, SP (BAL, Sea 14 IFA - $20MM): Features a splitter and slider that murder righties...very good control and velocity, and keeps the ball down well. Lefties will at least have a chance, but that's the only flaw.

4. Del Redondo, SP (LA Dodgers, Sea 13 #1 pick): tough lefty has everything. He has great control, is really tough on lefties and battles righties effectively. Sets up his out pitch - an unhittable old-school palm ball - with a good 4-seam fastball. Everything sinks - put a good infield defense behind him and he's going to put up great numbers.

5. Steve Davenport, SP/RP (KC, Sea 14 #2 pick): might have better stuff than some of the P's ahead of him here, but his STA/DUR is going to limit his innings some. But good pitching is good pitching - he brings outstanding velocity, great control, a killer vR and 2 exceptional pitches. Lefty batters will get their licks in occasionally, but it's a minor complaint.

Honorable mention: Midre Johnson, CHI; Sherman Lidge, TB; Chris McBride, HOU; Joel Iorg, SD; Kevin Chong, MIN

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