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Chat: Steve Givarz

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Monday June 20, 2016 4:00 PM ET chat session with Steve Givarz.


Steve is a member of our prospect team, covering the Florida State League. Ask him about the All Star Game that happened this past weekend!

Steve Givarz: Good afternoon all! Sorry that we didn't start sooner, needed some more time to get this up! http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=29579 Let's get started!

TrickDaddy14 (YTown): Ronald Acuna and Tyler O'Neill... Both are available in my dynasty league (deep minor rosters).... What do they both project in the future?

Steve Givarz: I'll start off by saying that I do not play fantasy baseball, nor will I be able to provide great insight. Luckily Scooter Hotz is chatting tomorrow so ask him!


I'll make one quick point on Tyler O'Neill; I saw him in the Arizona Fall League and I wasn't especially high on him. A very muscular swing, lacked defensive value, and wasn't sure about his contact ability. Apparently he found what I said and wanted to prove me wrong.

grant (Chi): Is a hot dog a sandwich?

Steve Givarz: Of course it is. So is a gyro, a hamburger, your favorite wrap, as well as falafel.

As described by the Earl of Sandwich, a sandwich is a form of food between bread. He wanted to make sure he was nourished as he was gambling.

Scott (CT): I know he's not in the Florida State League anymore, but I'm curious about Joe Jimenez. He's dominated everywhere, and with the Tigers needs for a strong bullpen arm, can you see him coming up soon? I honestly know very little about him, and am hoping you've seen him and can let us know what you see. Thanks for the chat!

Steve Givarz: I have seen him! You can check out my eyewitness report on Joe Jimenez right now!

Long story short the stuff is LOUD. Potential 80 Fastball, 65/70 Slider at times, 55 control.

He could be in the major league bullpen if necessary. If they are competing for a playoff spot and he keeps pitching well in AA, then I imagine he will be in the majors soon.

Hey Arnold (The Stoop): Who wins in a fist fight, you or Grant Jones? What about running the 60? Or a drinking contest?

Steve Givarz: Why must we resort to violence? Grant Jones is a valued friend of mine.

I would still smoke him in a 60-yd dash.

Larry (NC): Who is the best team you have seen in your scouting life?

Steve Givarz: I will preface this by saying that I have not been scouting for that long. I have probably been unaware of the talent of other teams while at games.

But I will say 2014 Myrtle Beach Pelicans. I did my summer internship down there and attended far too many games. Here are the major leaguers from that team: Joey Gallo, Cody Ege, Odubel Herrera, Hanser Alberto, Alexander Claudio, Keone Kela, Chi Chi Gonzalez, Andrew Faulkner, Abel De Los Santos.

While these guys are not in the big leagues yet, they will be soon: Nick Williams, Lewis Brinson, Chris Bostick, Jorge Alfaro, Ryan Cordell, Jose LeClerc, Samuel Wolff

And some other interesting guys with value: Preston Beck, Victor Payano, Kellin Deglan, Michael De Leon, Christopher Garia, Chad Bell

Man was that team loaded...

David (Atlantis): Hey Steve. As a member of a prospect team is there a specific type of player you seem to be more inclined to? Some former members have been more inclined towards Dominican hitters & some others with pitchers with good change ups.

Steve Givarz: I don't believe so. Over time I have gotten away from the "grinder" kinds of players, that while I personally enjoy watching, don't provide much value to big league teams.

If I had to pick I would say I enjoy watching LHP's with plus control cut through lineups faster than a butter knife in "I Can't Believe its not butter!"

Jim (MKE): Any thoughts on recently promoted Jon Perrin for Brevard? He tore up the MWL (was too good for the league) and seems to have a decent start so far in the FSL despite a drop in K's.

Steve Givarz: I have not seen Jon Perrin yet. Brevard will be back in Tampa next weekend and if he is slated to pitch I would like to go see him. I did enjoy an interview he did with David Laurila on Fangraphs a while ago on if he got into law school he was ready to quit baseball.


Jeb (Iowa City): What are your thoughts on Kevin Newman? Seems to have an elite hit tool.

Steve Givarz: I would agree with you! My eyewitness on Kevin Newman just went live!

Andrew (Boston): Have you heard anything about Nats lefty Tyler Watson? He hasn't allowed an earned run in 18.1 innings to start his career.

Steve Givarz: I had to phone a friend for this one.

Big LHP, signed for $400K to get out of his commitment to Loyola Marymount, still very raw, FB velo is upper 80's low 90's, CB is getting there. Young kid but sounds promising!

Dalton Leslie (Des Moines): How much would the Indians get back for Lindor?

Steve Givarz: Why are they trading Francisco Lindor?

Artie (Pittsburgh ): Amed Rosario. What's your take? Future first division starter? Where would he be on top prospect lists right now?

Steve Givarz: A lot of Amed Rosario questions in the queue, is he doing well or something? I joke.

I have not seen him or St. Lucie yet as the scheduling forced me to pick between Fort Myers in Lakeland, or St. Lucie in Tampa during the same week...I picked Fort Myers.

Thomas Desmidt will have an eyewitness report up on him soon though!

Bsg (Tucson): Who has the brightest future Clint Frazier, Victor Robles, Bradley Zimmer, Nick Williams, or Austin Meadows? Who is more likely to reach their potential? Thank you

Steve Givarz: Brightest: Victor Robles, Clint Frazier, Nick Williams, Bradley Zimmer, Austin Meadows
You could put those 5 in any order and I don't think you would be wrong.

Likely: Austin Meadows, Bradley Zimmer, Victor Robles, Nick Williams, Clint Frazier
I think Meadows is the safest of this bunch, Robles is still very young and hasn't faced any competition above A ball. Williams and Frazier both tantalize with promise but need to cut down on strikeouts.

cracker73 (Florida): Can you give me the names of a few prospects, outside of the Top 101, that have the highest upside?

Steve Givarz: LHP Ian Clarkin, RHP Tyler Mahle, SS Kevin Newman

BC (Urbandale): Do you think miguel montero's leadership and great pitch framing is enough to keep him in front of Contrearas for much longer? Also, anyone that thinks the Cubs trading Schwarber for a few months of Chapman is insane. and needs their head examined.

Steve Givarz: There isn't much playing time for Contreras with Ross catching a couple guys exclusively and that Montero does have a track record of success. Ross is gone after this year so I imagine next year will be Willson-mania.

Leonard (None of your business ): Could you tell us what should we think about the performance of Cody Reed so far this season? (I refer to the Arizona one) Is his performance something we should be paying attention to as legitimate or is it more smoke & mirrors?

Steve Givarz: I have not seen this Cody Reed myself.

James Fisher had an eyewitness on Reed earlier this year

Wilson Karaman did take him in our 2014 Re-draft though and was ecstatic with it.

In terms of smoke and mirrors, the CAL League tends to expose guys like that rather quickly so we will see.

Amed Rosario (St. Lucie): Why am I still here? The Mets didn't challenge me early, I've had a great season to this point-and the All-Star break has passed. Wouldn't it be logical for me to head up to Binghamton now?

Steve Givarz: Don't leave yet! I want to see you in Lakeland July 21-24th!

Rosario is still quite young and it would be a rather aggressive assignment to send him to AA at this point. I think he would be fine but let's not rush ourselves here.

Bob (NYC): Steve, any thoughts about when we will see Jorge Mateo in the Bronx?? Will he be playing second base?? Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Steve Givarz: Right before his first game at 2B in his career, Yankees GM Brian Cashman talked about increasing his versatility so that he could be more valuable.

You can't move Didi Gregorius off SS, he is too valuable defensively. Mateo would be fine at 2B if needed. I wouldn't be shocked if he started seeing time in the OF soon.

Jim (Texas): Mitch Keller and Ke'Bryan Hayes could be headed to Bradenton later this year. What are your thoughts on those two?

Steve Givarz: My thoughts on them are that I would like to see them in Bradenton this season. I don't have much on either player.

Adam McInturff does have thoughts on Keller though.

fawkesmulder (Zzyzx): How legit is Brayan Hernandez? Obviously a small sample, but he's slaying the summer league right now.

Steve Givarz: Let's slow down a bit here. Small sample size caveat applies here. Plus the DSL is the lowest rung of baseball.

Bob (Northern Hemisphere ): Is Migue Andujar turning into a name we should keep an eye out for? Or was his start this year due to him just repeating the level?

Steve Givarz: Miguel Andujar I also wrote up!

Long story short he does have intriguing tools including a plus arm, plus run, and potential plus raw. He still has some volatility given his age and that he hasn't been tested against upper level competition yet.

Igor (A bar): Adalberto Mejia just got promoted to AAA & pitched well in his debut. What should we think on him going forward?

Steve Givarz: I saw Mejia in the fall league, here was my report on him.

55FB, 45SL, 60CH, 50Control, 50Command

Large frame with XL stocky build, looks closer to 230/240 than 195. Weight will have to be watched as he progresses, pitches from the middle of the rubber, simple delivery with lack of momentum, needs to use body more instead of just arm, smooth clean arm action with fair arm speed, throws from a 3/4 slot, tended to drop slot. FB 90-92 T93, fair sink on pitch, command fair. CH 83-86, best pitch, thrown at arm speed and has late movement and bottoming out, was comfortable throwing in any count. SL 82-84 T86, shorter pitch with lack of depth, fair action, primarily to LHH, wasn't commanding well. Could see as a 5th starter/Swingman role

zachasman (Columbus): Do you expect Austin Meadows to be a consensus Top 10 prospect across the board on the next round of mid season Top 100 updates? How high would you personally put him?

Steve Givarz: I have not seen Austin Meadows so I can not comment on if he is a Top 10 prospect. We are also working on our Midseason top 50 so I can not comment on where he will place.

DJ (Dallas): Steve, thanks for the chat. Where do you see Jurickson Profar fitting in for the Rangers long term?? Or do you think he will be moved for help at other positions??

Steve Givarz: I would say he is athletic enough for any position (outside of C) on the diamond. It all depends on where the bat takes him and how well his arm has bounced back.

He doesn't really have that much trade value to other teams though. It's like an episode of Pawn Stars where someone brings in some supposed valuable item but you haven't brought in your expert to verify if its legit or not. I mean, if it is what he claims to be (a former top prospect in the game) then you potentially have a goldmine. If its a fake...then you have scraps.

Eric (Philly): Top Prospect in 2018? 2019?

Steve Givarz: 2018, some guy in A ball.
2019, some guy who might be overseas or in High school.

Ian (NYC): How long until baseball expands again? Where will it be? Is there enough interest in Europe?

Steve Givarz: I doubt it expands for a while, I doubt owners want to cut more into their revenue pie, plus pay more in revenue sharing.

Logistically you couldn't do Europe but it is interesting. The game is growing over there and they have sent players from countries you wouldn't expect are in the US playing! For example:
The Twins have a player from Moldova- RHP Vadim Balan
The Yankees have a player from Poland- LHP Artur Strzalka
The Reds had a former player from Slovakia- LHP Jakub Izold
The Pirates have players from Lithuania (RHP Dovydas Neverauskas), India (LHP Rinku Singh, RHP Dinesh Patel), South Africa (SS Gift Ngoepe)

Plus there have been players from Germany (Donald Lutz), Italy (Alex Liddi) and other places to have major leaguers. It's exciting to see the game grow world-wide.

Alexei (At work): Jacob Nottingham has started to hit as of late in AA. What should we be looking for out of his development this year & how does he compare with the other catcher prospects in your opinion?

Steve Givarz: Nottingham's development will hinder on if he can stay behind the plate or not. Otherwise he is just not that interesting as a prospect. Overall the minor league catching crop is weak...Francisco Mejia was supposed to be a guy at the top, Willson Contreras might not be an everyday catcher, Alfaro still frustrates, McGuire has a light bat, Gary Sanchez might not catch either. If a guy has offensive potential they might move that player quickly off catching because its a longer track with a lot of bad directions it could take.

Ronnie (Nebraska): When does Joey Gallo get called up for good and what do you see his future ceiling as?

Steve Givarz: Well as long as Beltre is at 3B it won't be there. His value is so much lower at 1B that they need an OF spot to open up before he is called up for good. Problem is that Nomar Mazara guy is pretty good and has a lockdown on RF. Shin-Soo Choo and Josh Hamilton are making a lot of money, so there isn't an everyday spot for him yet.

Justin (Des Moines): What are your thoughts on Cole Tucker?

Steve Givarz: My thoughts on Cole Tucker is that he is being pushed very aggressively given he missed a full season to a shoulder injury. Unfortunately Bradenton doesn't come up to my area (Lakeland and Tampa) again this season so I might have to make a special trip to catch them again.

Baseballdeity (Heavens): Do you see Frances Martes future role as a starter or reliever?

Steve Givarz: It would be a really good starter if he could stay there...But I think he would also be a lights-out closer which is where I think he ends up.

fawkesmulder (Zzyzx): Brock Stewart is doing very well for the Dodgers. Obviously older than competition, but is there any shot for him being an MLB level pitcher?

Steve Givarz: He certainly has been impressive no? Phoned in a friend again. Kind of a kitchen sink guy, L 3/4 slot with a 93-94 FB, a cutter, slider, changeup, sinker. Nothing grades out highly but he is competitive and throws strikes so he has a chance based on that.

Jose (Maryland): Felix Jorge. What it is hi ETA? Is he a starter or reliever long term?

Steve Givarz: I will have an eyewitness up on Felix Jorge soon, I promise.

Jerry (Earth): Care to provide any thoughts on the seasons of Derek Fisher & Ryan McMahon so far in AA? Is it crazy to say/hope of a role 6 ceiling for each?

Steve Givarz: I saw Derek Fisher in the AFL and I would say you are crazy to think of a Role 6 kind of ceiling. There is a lot of swing and miss, nor is he a gifted defender. I haven't seen McMahon but we did place him 36th in our preseason top 101, and give him a Role 55 in our Rockies Top 10 prospects.

Mark (google): Aristides Aquino Good power and arm but whats the rest of the package? future mlb role?

Steve Givarz: I also wrote up Aristides Aquino in an eyewitness! His profile still has a lot of volatility given how young he is and how aggressive he is at the plate. At his peak he hits a lot of home runs while you don't talk about him defensively.

Peter (LA): Did you play college ball? What team did you never like facing?

Steve Givarz: I did not play college baseball. My skills never appeared at any level. I did work with the Ohio University baseball team while I was in school. Man Kent State was always tough to face, especially that 2012 team...David Starn was untouchable, Ryan Bores was a gopher-killer, Tyler Skulina threw really hard and had no idea where it was going, David Lyon, Jimmy Rider, George Roberts, and Derek Toadvine were all impossible guys to get out. Plus a bullpen of Brian Clark and Josh Pierce were untouchable at the time.

Greg (Ny): Which mets prospects do you like and why? How many first division regulars? Thanks a ton, Steve

Steve Givarz: I have not had a chance to see St. Lucie yet. I have been told that Amed Rosario is a GUY. I would talk to Thomas Desmidt for all mets related questions.

Steve Givarz: All right after two hours I must depart. I want to thank everyone for joining me this afternoon. I also want to thank Craig Goldstein, Wilson Karaman, and everyone else for helping me a ton with my big piece that went up today. Let's do this again soon.

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