Jessica is a prospect writer for BP, focusing primarily on the Florida State League.
Jessica Quiroli: Really sorry to anyone who tried to join in! I'm here after some technical issues.
Andrew (City of Brotherly Love): Worried about JP CRawford? Can he better then Francisco Lindor?
Jessica Quiroli: Not at all. He's developed at a good pace. Not a bad start in Triple-A, right? *wink* Prospects don't always develop as we envision, but he's responded to the pressure positively. And for a kid who will be playing in front of tough Phillies fans & media, that's going to be important.
A Tortuga for All Seasons (Jackie Robinson Ballpark): Favorite FSL stadium and why?
Jessica Quiroli: Tampa Yankees. I have to admit I've spent the most time covering games there. The way they pay tribute to past Yankees and just the layout is really beautiful.
Bob (NYC): Do you have any reports on Kevin Taylor (StLucie)? MIer the Mets plucked out of the Indy league iirc... currently tearing it up in the FSL.
Jessica Quiroli: I'll see St. Lucie for the first time next month. I covered a lot of the Mets guys in New York Penn League, however, and a few of those guys, like Brandon Nimmo, are rising fast.
ROSS (TORONTO): whats accessment of Christian Stewart, power and OBP look off the charts, will he play in majors
Jessica Quiroli: I saw Stewart in GCL and, man, he's a strong kid. Whether or not he can translate those skills to the majors is still too early to tell, but he's killing it in Florida State League with 14 HRs. I look forward to seeing how he handled more challenging Double-A pitching.
BC (Urbandale): Do you think current Cubs rotation is good enough as is to win it all? Or do they need back end of the rotation help?
Jessica Quiroli: I've only watched them once this year, but it seems to me their offensive issues are the thing. The rotation is so solid, though. Lester's been super exciting.
mordecofe1 (NYC): Harrison Bader looks very interesting, but I'm a bit worried about the plate discipline. That said, he did have the 2 level jump and when he does make contact it's hard. Think it's something he can overcome in the majors?
Jessica Quiroli: Well, let me talk about this from my own experience of watching other players make those jumps. The 2-level jump is always hard & provides a big test for players, particularly High-A to Double-A. If you can hit/pitch consistently in Double-A, you may not need time in Triple-A. When I covered Kyle Drabek, he looked like he was major-league ready in Double-A. But, obviously, he ran into a lot of issues. Similar to say Jesus Montero, who looked like the future middle-of-the-order power bat for the Yankees, and, again, nope. Plate discipline issues are normal, especially if a player is making a big jump, or skipping a level. If he's making hard contact, he's likely running into some bad luck.
Ernie (Flint, MI): Jessica,
What do you think of Felix Jorge ?
Does he profile as a starter ?
Jessica Quiroli: I haven't seen Jorge pitch yet! I'll know more in the next month.
Ben (Washington DC): Is victor Robles the top prospect next year?
Jessica Quiroli: I don't know but he's a fun baseball story. The tools! And he's so young, that imagining everything less raw, more polished in the next few years is exciting.
Keith (Farmington, CT): Thanks Jessica. What is the ceiling for Christin Stewart's hit tool? Can he be an average hitter eventually in the majors?
Jessica Quiroli: I'm sure there are better experts for this question haha But I'll say that he's hitting for power, racking up the home runs in pitcher-friendly FSL. He's also making good contact. I believe his average was fairly good last year. He's also drawing walks, so he's exhibiting good patience and pitch recognition. I'll see him a bit more in June to have a better assessment of where he's at now.
Frenchy (Dearborne): Dom smith? Thoughts?
Jessica Quiroli: I don't know if you mean the earlier issue with the lack of hustle or potential, but on the first, I like the way he handled that situation. He took responsibility. There are players who don't check their ego, especially young guys first getting to the majors, and he showed a lot of maturity and heart when Collins reprimanded him. As for his potential, he tore through the FSL last year. He's doing well in Double-A after a bit of a slow start in Bing.
mordecofe1 (NYC): Right up your alley! Amed Rosario - should he be bumped up to AA, or think he should stick around the FSL for a while longer, since he's so young? More power in that stick to come?
Jessica Quiroli: I'd love to see him get a shot at Double-A this year. He's played 41 games in FSL this year, but with a full season in the league last year, he could be ready for a bigger challenge. We never know until they get there!
Jeb (IC): Tell us about Kevin Newman....
Jessica Quiroli: The short answer: He's dominating FSL pitching. Maybe there were concerns last year, but not at this point.
Jessica Quiroli: Thank you to everyone for their patience at the start & for the awesome questions. I'm sorry I couldn't get to them all. But I hope to chat again soon! Thanks again.