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2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers

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Offline  2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#1

Posted: May 23, 2015, 7:23 PM Post
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With the lack of catching prospects in the Brewers system, I took a look at some of the college catchers in the draft and there are a few of them that are really intriguing and perhaps flying under the radar. I don't have access to a ton of scouting reports, so perhaps some who are more educated in that department can lend a hand.

1) Austin Rei, C, Washington (likely at #55, unlikely still available at #90) - I think he's flying under the radar because he missed half of this season to thumb surgery. He's not a huge power hitter, but he's a high OBP guy and supposedly is a very good defensive catcher. Posted a .441 OBP this season and a .408 OBP as a sophomore. Was All-Pac-12 defensive team as a sophomore and had a .981 fielding % as a sophomore and a 1.000 fielding % this season. Did this against good competition in the Pac-12. Bats right.

2) Austin Allen, C, Florida Tech (likely at #90, may be there at #121) - obviously his stats are inflated by lower level competition, but a .421 BA and .473 OBP at any level of college is good. Seems to be decent defensively as he only made two errors (.991 fielding %) this past year. Had a .429 OBP as a sophomore. He's a bigger guy (6'4", 220), and it's always nice when you can find a catcher who hits LH. Lucroy didn't go to a big school.

3) Taylor Ward, C, Fresno State - (likely at #55, unlikely at #90) - another guy who doesn't have a ton of power but good OBP (.297 BA, .403 OBP this season). Ward also put up a good OBP as a sophomore (.395).

4) Paul DeJong, C, Illinois State - (likely at #90, may be there at #121) - another good OBP guy (.427 in 2015, .430 in 2014), has also played all infield positions. He did make a bunch of errors, but I don't know what position(s) they were at. Would be intriguing if he could play C or 3B. Bats RH.

Wondering if those who have more access to scouting reports could chime in on these guys. Other than Stephenson, I don't know much about HS catching prospects so if those same folks could chime in on the HS guys that would be appreciated too.

As for drafting catchers, I don't know about drafting them in the first round. Seems like if you draft a guy with an advanced bat, teams want to move him through the system quickly and so they move them off of catcher. Two of the three best catchers in the NL (Lucroy and Molina) were 3rd and 4th round picks, so you don't necessarily have to spend a 1st on a catcher. Looking at these college guys, they might be able to get a good one in the 2nd-4th and still go pitching/3B with their first 2-3 picks.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#2

Posted: May 29, 2015, 11:55 AM Post
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My feelings on catchers is they're limited to 130games ceiling roughly on a season. Have all the reason to get banged up injured. Foul balls, swings that result in a follow through bat to the head.
Nevermind the grueling squats have on the body...Lucroy's second half swoon?

For these reasons I'd never take a catcher in first 2 rounds. They just aren't exceptional enough vs drafting a quality everyday position player or a #3 or better SP vs what you can get replacement level in FA for less than 5mil a year. And they're at least proven replacement level catchers vs drafting a high ceiling lotto ticket who easily can flame out or require being moved off from Catcher defensively in the first place.
Snag a talent 3rd-5th rd if one is there or just wait another season.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#3

Posted: May 29, 2015, 1:15 PM Post
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A pitcher handles the ball on every pitch, making him the most important player out there - catchers handle the ball on every pitch that isn't hit somewhere, they also call the game back there, and they have a spot in the lineup - the importance of the position can't be overstated.

I do agree that the position will always be very demanding, I like the rules change to cut down collisions, but even if a guy never took a foul tip, he still has to squat for nine innings to get paid, and of course he's going to get fouls, backswings, etc.

I would never hesitate to take a great catcher in round one, like the Giants did with Buster Posey before they won three of five World Series, but more importantly, I would try to keep a pipeline going at the position. Since the position is so important, and since the shelf life of a catcher can be cut short, I would take one in the first five rounds, every year, all the time.

I wouldn't worry so much about moving the guy to a different position later, I just consider that to be another reason why you need to keep 'em coming. If he's a great hitter, he was worth a top pick, even if he winds up at another spot., and at least you got a few years out of him behind the plate.

EDIT: I would treat catchers like NFL running backs - use age 30 as the cutoff line. If you've got a Hall of Famer, maybe you extend that a couple of years, but for the most part, expect them to break down at that point. I have no problem taking a catcher in round one, but I'd be much more cautious about giving a 28-year-old catcher a new 5-year contract.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#4

Posted: May 30, 2015, 12:01 PM Post
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awesome write-up by the spindly one.....Florida Tech is where it's at


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#5

Posted: May 30, 2015, 6:06 PM Post
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Honestly, I'd like to get a couple. It reminds me of when we had Salome and Lucroy on the way. As I recall (off the top of my head), Salome was initially further along, but Lucroy ended up being the guy. I like that we doubled down.

I like what I am hearing about the Leal kid, but he's a low level draft pick who's doing well. I want a couple more really good prospects at catcher.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#6

Posted: May 30, 2015, 10:18 PM Post
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We had some nice depth for a bit. Minors had Salome, Lucroy, Fryer, Corporan, Maldonado...all of whom have been in MLB except the mysterious Salome. I'm still a believer that I'd rather not draft catchers early. I'd rather sign a journeyman or hope a 15-30th rounder pans out than waste a pick on a player that would be ranked much lower at any other position.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#7

Posted: May 30, 2015, 10:38 PM Post
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I agree no Catcher should be drafted in the first 3 rounds but also not sure we lack depth at the catcher spot.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#8

Posted: May 30, 2015, 11:15 PM Post
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I think you take the best player available and if Buster Posey is sitting there then you better draft him. If he's one of the best hitters in the draft and far and away the best talent on your board make the pick. If he's a C great, if he turns out not to be but can still hit, just as good.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."
- Plato
"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."
- Plato


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#9

Posted: May 31, 2015, 4:53 PM Post
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Another college catching prospect that should be available in rounds 7-13 is Kevin Martir of Maryland. Catcher's build (5'11", 215), he hit .327 with a .425 OBP (29 BB and 10 HBP in ~265 PAs). Only four errors on the year, a .992 fielding %.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#10

Posted: June 01, 2015, 11:33 PM Post
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speaking of Eric Fryer, he's had a nice minor league career. Too bad we only got Chase Wright for him


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#11

Posted: June 07, 2015, 6:44 PM Post
Posts: 477
Draft strategy 101

Pitchers catchers, and short stops only, please.

Pitchers need to be half of your picks, mostly starters. They have a unique skill set.
Catchers also have a unique skill set. they also can be converted to 3B, 1B and RF.
Short stops also play the most important defensive position, next to catcher. They can be converted to 3B, 2B, and any outfield position.

On a side note. Make most of them if not all left handed or switch hitters. Just the geometry of the game.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#12

Posted: June 09, 2016, 6:48 PM Post
Posts: 477
Let's draft a few catchers, ss and starting pitchers.


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Offline  Re: 2015 catching prospects and drafting catchers
#13

Posted: June 18, 2016, 3:36 PM Post
Posts: 477
I like the multiple catchers in the 2016 draft. Some good short stops and a few third baseman, and looks like quality college arms. Overall a good job!


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