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Chat: AL Central Top 10 Chat

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Monday January 13, 2020 1:00 PM ET chat session with AL Central Top 10 Chat.


This chat will be to discuss the AL Central Top 10 Prospect Lists.

AL Central Top 10 Chat: Let's talk about some AL Central prospects but probably mostly your fantasy teams

muldoonangus (South Dakota): You are higher on Nick Gordon than maybe some reviewers are. Do you think he can be a valuable utility guy in the majors, or maybe even a significant trade chip in a major trade?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: I think the former is more likely than the latter. He's disappointed as a pro relative to where he was picked, but he's a solid enough middle infielder that can hit a little bit and run a little bit. There's sneaky pop for his size. He's not an amazing prospect but the profile is 45ish.You might get a team to bite on the draft pedigree, but as I note in the blurb, that feels like a long long time ago now.

dougotto (Chicago): Assuming Alex Kirilloff moves to 1B primarily, would you rather have him or Andrew Vaughn?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: Vaughn, and the 101--coming in a bit--will reflect that.

Rollie FIngers (Oakland, CA): Who you got? James Karinchak or Andres Muñoz?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: Ooh that's a fun one. It's a broadly similar profile--Munoz wasn't list eligible on days of service--Just absolutely off you power stuff with concerns about short-term strike-throwing. This isn't as scientific as I'd like, but I slightly prefer Karinchak's breaker and while nothing in his delivery is low effort, he feels like a guy who can hold up better over the medium term throwing everything that hard. The general volatility of relievers wipes the margin out and if you picked Munoz, I couldn't really disagree.

muldoonangus (South Dakota): You are higher on Cole Sans and lower on Blayne Enlow that most. Is that because one has performed above expectations or the other has performed below expectations?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: I don't think there's much of a gap between them. Sands' secondaries and command are a tick better, but both have averagish starting pitcher projections. It's a very deep system.

ironcityguys (daBurgh): How long before ChiSox 2B prospect Nick Madrigal entrenches himself on the South Side? Any rookie projections for 2020?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: Madrigal is a polished college bat, a top-five pick that hit almost .340 in the upper minors last year. If you have designs on competing, you should probably just start him Opening Day over Leury Garcia. I'd expect the White Sox to keep him down for the clawback. I'm very curious to see how this plays out and I imagine he's a difficult projection given the uniquely high contact rate.

Unagi (The Hills): Given the expected innings restrictions, how do you see Michael Kopech faring in his actual rookie season?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: So this is one of those questions where I need to see how he actually looks now, but assuming he's back to the pre-injury form--and he'll be over 18 months off surgery by Opening Day--I'd expect 120 innings of good stuff, command wobbles and an ERA somewhere in the 3.50-4.00 range.

JK (Boston): I didn't expect him in the top 20, but was Burdi considered for the personal cheeseball? I'm curious if there's a sense of the odds of him still becoming a late inning RP.

AL Central Top 10 Chat: I do love me some cheddar, but Burdi has never thrown more than 38 innings in a season and hasn't been healthy and good since 2016. That said, relievers are volatile so sure, but I would guess it would be a burn hot and short tenure of late-inning dominance. Also was going to be difficult to get Jarrett off of Alec Hansen as the Cheeseball.

Ben (CA): Thanks for chatting today. It’s always appreciated. How much better of a prospect is Daniel Johnson than Lamonte Wade?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: Significantly more upside given the tools profile. Wade was over on days of service, but he might have snuck in somewhere at the back of the Twins list based on upper minors performance and proximity. Limited ceiling here and he strikes me more as a bench outfielder. That might be how Daniel Johnson ends up as well, but there's pop that just isn't in Wade's skill set.

P (The Middle): You do realize that by having one AL Central chat instead of a chat for each team in the division you are feeding into the idea that these teams don't matter as much and aren't worthy of as much attention, right?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: The individual team chats weren't particularly well atteneded for the most part and I've been in Annual/Futures Guide book crunch for a month so I tried to clear my calendar some. Nothing personal against Middle America.

muldoonangus (South Dakota): Jorge Alcala gets no mention. Is he a non factor as far as a prospect, or are the Twins just deep enough that he can't get into this group?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: He's a pretty good relief prospect that was on the end of the list at various points and ended up getting bumped of as I went through drafts. Speaks more to the system depth than him as a prospect, although he's more of a 95-and-a-slider guy than a late-inning arm. Would have made plenty of other lists tho.

stevegoz (Chicago): Thoughts on what the White Sox rotation looks like in early June? Is that when we see whether Reynaldo Lopez, late-inning reliever is a thing? Or does the likelihood that Cease and Kopech rarely pitch into the sixth to preserve their arms and Gio Gonzalez is as limited as he was last year (he exceeded 5.0 IP in only two of his 17 starts!) mean we're going to see some planned tandem games involving these latter three pitchers?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: They could, and arguably should, try and get creative here. Could try some tandem stuff, use some openers. There's also not as much depth as you'd like given the durability concerns on the staff. The O/U on Ross Detwiler and Bernardo Flores starts could be dangerously high.

P (The Middle): Just giving you a hard time - I figured it was a combination of it being a busy time of year and question volume for the team-specific chats. Thanks as always for hosting this. My question is how did everyone seem to miss on Arraez? He didn't hit a lot of homers, so it's not like the ball impacted him a ton. Just an outlier? Can he do it again?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: I don't think he's a true talent .330 hitter, but basically no one is nowadays (heh, maybe Nick Madrigal), and even if the batting average regresses some he's still a useful guy. The short answer on Arraez is he only really only offered the hit tool in terms of value as a prospect, so you really had to believe he'd hit .300+ in the majors, and that's a big ask on any hit tool projection. It's very difficult to know how that kind of bat will play against major league stuff until it does. This happened with Jeff McNeil to a certain extent as well.

muldoonangus (South Dakota): Would Lewin Diaz, Jaylin Davis, Prelander Berroa, and Kai-Wei Teng all be included here if not traded last year at the deadline?

AL Central Top 10 Chat: First two yes, in the next ten somewhere, Diaz higher by bit. The other two just miss.

AL Central Top 10 Chat: We kick off the NL Central with the Cubs on Wednesday.

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