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Chat: Jeffrey Paternostro

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Thursday January 21, 2021 12:00 PM ET chat session with Jeffrey Paternostro.

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Jeffrey Paternostro is the Lead Prospect Writer for Baseball Prospectus.

Jeffrey Paternostro: Someone in this household (I wont name names) got me up at 1:30 and 6, but we will chat as long as the coffee holds up.

prhood (St. John's, NL): You have ranked Kirilloff considerably lower (#71) than either HQ (#17) or BA (#18). How come? What did you observe that dropped him so low?

Jeffrey Paternostro: I can only speak to our process, and we've generally been more muted on the ultimate offensive upside as he has yet to really strike a balance between his early career swing which was geared more for contact with a flatter plane, and more recent tweaks to try and unlock more pull power that have led to some hit tool concerns as he ends up flying open. Keanan has seen him extensively his last two real seasons and written about it on the site. That, combined with the obvious corner profile--and some first base risk--keeps him more in the "above-average regular" tier for us

draftbrew (Wisconsin): How much further down an expanded list (beyond the 101) until we could expect the first Brewers' prospect sighting?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Turang just missed the just missed this year, so somewhere between 125-150 probably.

Devil Ray (Tampa): Thoughts on Josh Lowe and Heiriberto Hernandez? Did they have any traction. Thanks

Jeffrey Paternostro: Lowe was on the long list, but behind several other Rays that were closer to making it. Hernandez really isn't in consideration for us yet until we see the bat against better arms and have a better idea where he's going to stand in the field. Wouldn't be shocked if he's at least in consideration next year though.

Buff (Colorado): Given the questions about his hit tool, what gives you the confidence to rank Robinson as highly as you do? How were the reports from the alt site and instructs?

Jeffrey Paternostro: They were good enough to keep him roughly where he was last year. Maybe down a bit if you consider attrition and graduations around him. It was a steep learning curve for him at the AS, but by the end of they year the reports were good enough to keep him about the same as last year. It's high end upside due the potential elite power down the line.

dabu7 (Queens): Among the Mets top-3, who do you see having the most realistic upside? Do you think all have top-20 overall potential?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Allan is the most likely to click and end up in a Shane Baz or Grayson Rodriguez type range after a real season. Top 20 might be pushing it at least for 2022, but if you told me he was at some point one of the five or so best pitching prospects in baseball, well it's not impossible. It's weird to say no on mauricio who has been and is the highest ranked, but for some reason I'm less confident on him coming off a badly needed lost season. Alvarez? Well, it's tough for me to rank a non-elite catching prospect in the top 20, and I don't think he ever quite gets there. But weirdly you could make a case he's more likely to be Top 50 than Allan, given intrinsic pitching prospect risks.

jugdish (Faber): Thoughts on Michael Busch -who is the 2b in l/a in 2021/2022. Taylor/muncy/lux/mcKinstry/Busch?

Jeffrey Paternostro: I don't think there's a huge rush on Busch given the present infield depth and his lack of game reps. Bat might be good enough to force the issue at some point though, and he's the kind of guy you can have stand in a few different spots.

Quincy (Ames): What do you make of the far away prospects the cubs picked up-preciado,mean, and cassie

Jeffrey Paternostro: I liked Caissie a lot coming out of the draft, Mena and Preciado certainly have 2021 breakout potential, although the instructs reports were only "fine" on both.

Mike in Vero Beach (In the Sunshine): Hi, Good Job as always..., can you tell me if Andy Pages got any love, there are many good Dodger prospects and it seems that each source has their favorites. Also so I can sleep tonight, could you tell me where Gavin Lux would have ranked had he not lost his eligibility. Regards, Mike

Jeffrey Paternostro: Not really in a Top 101 sense, although we did like him coming into the year. Another one where the shape of the season made it hard to pin him down to the point to push him as hard as one might have liked.

Philly Fan (Philly): Please fill me in on your opinions and thoughts on Bryson Stott, and how close he might have been if at all. Thanks, Ill hang up and listen. PF

Jeffrey Paternostro: He's probably Top 150ish. It's just not a profile that particularly excites me, and he looked pretty average post draft for Williamsport. Got some positive reports from 2020 on the bat, and there's no real weakness here in the profile, it's just not a lot of upside, and he kind of feels like the infield version of Haseley.

Biff hooper (Bayport): Edwin rios looks pretty interesting- what to make of the dodgers 3b long term with rios hoesse vargas.?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Long term I'd expect Vargas, but it's pretty reasonable to want to sign someone to push that out a few more years.

Quincy (Ames): So, who did really pop at the alternative camps other than Busch and hedbert perez?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Abrams and Witt, although it doesn't show up as a big ordinal jump, 25ish to firmly top ten is a larger projection gap than some bigger ones further down the list. Quinn Priester is going to be a just missed for us but you can add him in. Evan Carter for the Rangers I'll be writing about as a potential 2022 Top 101 guy in the Ten Pack on Monday. If you want to count LIDOM here, Jeremy Pena probably moved a few extra spots off his performance there. I do hesitate to frame it as "popping" since we don't really know what we have here until we see it over the long haul in games. But it's the actionable information we have this year.

Baseball is Pretty Cool (IL): Of the prospects after the top 50, who would you say has the highest ceiling?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Jordan Walker, Erick Pena, Noelvi Marte, maybe someone like Austin Hendrick. Gabriel Arias and Jordyn Adams if the bat clicks.

John (Central Ohio): Thoughts on the states 2 top SS prospects, Garcia and Rocchio. What did your intel and opinions lead you to? Was Rocchio penalized for not playing and was Garcia penalized because he did play? :):) Thank You, John

Jeffrey Paternostro: Haha, more or less yeah. Rocchio will end up on our just missed list, and we really don't have any reason to think he's a markedly different prospect than last year, but we do have reason to believe some guys are better which jump him, it's also the type of profile you want to see produce at every level, and when that doesn't happen, you readjust some. Again, not fair and the difference between 98 where he was last year, and 107 or whatever this year just isn't really significant. On Garcia, he had a kind of unfair assignment, but I worry about that swing even when his overall game is more major-league ready.

Dominique (Francona): Do you see masyn Winn of the cards as a ss or pitcher? If a ss what’s the upside/projection?

Jeffrey Paternostro: They are going to try and develop him as both. It feels like generally these profiles advance faster as pitchers than position players, but it's also been a while since an org has really committed to developing a two-way prep. The frame is more shortstop than pitcher, as Keanan discusses on Monday's Cardinals list, but given the raw pop and athletic tools, he could be above-average there.

Old Timer (Raleigh): If Tyler Soderstrom was being developed as a non- catcher position player, would he make the top 101? thanks

Jeffrey Paternostro: I think we more or less have him projected as one. He's a Just Missed as well, but more just because of the limited pro track record. If we really thought he was a catcher, he probably makes it, as you could certainly make a case that he was the second best bat in the prep class behind Veen.

ari blum (ny): What was wrong with Garrett Mitchell?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Nothing a fairly significant swing change to unlock more game power won't fix. He might actually get there too, but given the present stroke, it was hard to make a case for the bat carrying him to the back of the 101. He's broadly in that 125-150 tier with Turang. If you wanted to throw him in the high-upside outside of the top 50 guys, sure, although I'd prefer Hendrick as 2020 draftees go.

uncasf1 (Raleigh NC): The A's have zero prospects in the top 101. Other than Soderstrom, is there anyone with potential to make this list in the future? thanks

Jeffrey Paternostro: Well Puk was close, but he's either going to graduate or be hurt again, so he's not really a 2022 candidate. Puason and Buelvas are the two obvious guys that could rise quickly. And Jeff Criswell could end up one of our third starter types ranked 79th or thereabouts.

Mick (Keon): Who’s up first and who you like better Edward cabrera or max Meyer?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Probably Cabrera given he was closer by the end of 2020, but Meyer is also functionally a major-league ready arm, so it might depend on who's on turn when someone gets hurt, or if they need a short-term bullpen bump.

Buff (Colorado): When does the Dynasty list come out?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Next Wednesday

Bob (Prince): How well has cherington done with the rebuild. Seems like he’s done okay with what he had to work with.

Jeffrey Paternostro: I suppose that is fair. I liked the Gonzalez pick and the deals they've made are all fine as far as it goes (and the Marte one could even end up looking quite good in the end) but "what he had to work with" is doing a lot of work there, as the org has higher level systemic problems.

Jason (Nashville): Sorry if this was answered somewhere that I missed, but did Jo Adell not qualify?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Adell along with a few other guys that weren't strict PA/IP cutoffs got bumped by the new rookie eligibility rules they added to account for the 2020 season.

uncasf1 (Raleigh): Jeter Downs. I am surprised he did not make it given he actually has an extensive professional track record for you to evaluate. Any noteworthy flaws that kept him off the list? thanks

Jeffrey Paternostro: He will also be on tomorrow's Just Missed list, but the short of it is we think he's probably a second baseman and we worry the approach will limit his hit tool at higher levels.

Jason (Boston): Does Andrew Vaughn stat at 1B or move to DH? And what’s his upside as a hitter?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Given the amount of corner bats on the south side right now, I think he ends up rotating through both. He's fine at first, and I wouldn't be shocked if they try him in an outfield corner (although strictly speaking I don't endorse that). The reasonable upside here is something like .300, 30+ home runs.

Jeffrey (Toobin): Any reports on how Nolan Gorman looked at the camps? Think he’ll be up in 2022?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Reports were louder in Spring than at the Alternate Site, but no reason he can't be a 2022 factor with a good start to the year--and I'd expect he's done enough to get AAA reps if that is the only level that opens on time.

Ames (Quincy): Robert hassell- more of a high floor guy? Kotsay-ish? Or is there more there?

Jeffrey Paternostro: I hesitate to ever call a prep bat high floor. It's a more advanced bat than you'd expect with perhaps some tweenerish concerns though. It's also one of those profiles where if everything gets to above-average, it plays up past the sum of its parts. Also not for nothing but Kotsay's three year peak was as a four-win player. Sign me up for that with most draft picks.

Fred whitfield (Cleveland): Do you see g perdomo developing any power to speak of or is he just a nice ba/ obp guy

Jeffrey Paternostro: I think he can develop enough to make the slugging start with a 4, but it's not going to be a driving force of the profile.

Jim mcintyre (Cincinnati): Do you see Marco Luciano at short or 3b/ outfield?2022 or 2023?

Jeffrey Paternostro: Maaaaaan, third base but don't hold me to that this time next year. 2023 is more likely than 2022 but not impossible.

Jeffrey Paternostro: Okay I'm also at the mercy of when naptime runs out. We can talk more about the list next week if you like, and we still have a couple more weeks of team lists to run through.


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