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Chat: Jason Parks

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Wednesday April 04, 2012 1:00 PM ET chat session with Jason Parks.


Jason joins you for a want-filled marathon chat to discuss Opening Day, his spring training diaries and other adventures in Arizona, and (most likely) Martin Kove.

Jason Parks: I'm watching Red Dawn and my #want level is high. Let's do this. Powers Boothe is a real man.

Xavier (Texas): Better career: Drew Pomeranz or Rubby de la Rosa?

Jason Parks: Drew Pomeranz

ttt (Work...): What are you drinking?

Jason Parks: Coffee. It's chilled.

Michael (Topeka): Have you been able to see Jorge Bonifacio? If so, on a scale of Marge Schott - Martin Kove, how sexy is he?

Jason Parks: I have. He's much closer to Martin Kove, but he's not that close to Martin Kove. I liked him, though. He has tools; good power potential/ good hit/ very good arm/ present athleticism. He's a legit corner OF prospect.

ttt (Manhattan): Who would you rather have? Hosmer + Pedro Alvarez or Lawrie + Belt?

Jason Parks: Hosmer+ anybody is probably going to trump Not Hosmer + anybody.

Tucker Blair (Baltimore): I recently discussed the Taylor Teagarden/Randy Henry trade with you. Was wondering what benefits does a club like the Orioles see in a trade like this? A potential upside guy with a live arm for a player whom is probably nothing more than a backup C, in which the Orioles really didn't have a strong need for.

Jason Parks: Backup catchers have value, especially guys like Teagarden, who have ++ game calling ability. At the time of the trade, the Orioles were in the middle of a front office shakeup, and the people tasked with the responsibility of the trade might not have been sold on Henry or aware of his upside, thus making him an ideal piece to include in such a trade. I can't speak to the specifics because I wasn't there, but Baltimore gave up a talented arm that has major league potential.

Dave (Syracuse): I'm currently unemployed and living at home until June. The silver lining is Bryce Harper being sent to AAA-Syracuse. What should I look for when I watch him, and are there any other guys I should be watching closely?

Jason Parks: Triple-A will present a challenge to Harper because those arms have experience and can manipulate a baseball. He needs to face a lot of breaking stuff in order to prepare for the highest level. It will be good to fail a little, and then recover and take the next step forward. When watching Harper at that level, watch how he adjusts to the off-speed stuff. Can he shorten his swing with two strikes? Can he keep his hands back when fooled? Can he fight off quality until he works himself into a mistake? He won't be in Triple-A for very long.

Jaffe's Mustache (Los Angeles): Ok, spring training is over. So where do you and Patricia head next? If you and Patricia are going your seperate ways, would you mind sharing her number. I really like a good listener.

Jason Parks: Patricia was really a Dominican prospect that wishes to remain nameless.

Bucky (NY): I think your watch is broken.

Jason Parks: I don't wear a watch, but if I did wear a watch, I would wear a watch that worked.

ttt (Work): How high on the Verducci's hair scale is Alfaro's arm?

Jason Parks: 8

Rob (Alaska): Hey, Jason. Thanks for the chat. So I've noticed a lot of similarities in what I'm hearing about Francisco Lindor relative to Jurickson Profar a year ago: does everything well, supremely polished for the age, lacks a huge offensive ceiling. This year Profar revised our expectations of him, particularly. I guess I'm trying to understand whether this well-rounded, extremely solid/polished skillset plays up (above expectations), or whether it was a true tools-based breakout. And of course I'm wondering whether the same might be expected of Lindor. Thanks for the chat and the dispatches from Arizona. I loved the bit about the dog.

Jason Parks: Here's the thing with Profar: I don't think his breakout season altered his ceiling, at least not in my mind. What it did was raise his floor, which was already very high. Profar is a first-division shortstop waiting to happen, and he might be an all-star shortstop before the music stops. His floor is basically a starting major leaguer at a premium defensive position. He is going to be very good. The only question is how good is how soon? Lindor is similar in the sense that his floor is remarkably high, and his current polish and maturity allows those that have seen him in person to paint an accurate picture of the type of player he is going to be. Like Profar, Lindor has everything you want to see in a starting SS at the major league level; instincts out the ass, + arm, + glove. Add to the mix a very good bat, a very mature approach, and some pop. It's a great combination. They are both going to play in the majors for over a decade. They are the shortstops of the future.

Gene (Los Angeles): Did you get a chance to see Tyrell Jenkins pitch this spring? I ask because I don't recall you telling Patricia anything about him. Also, who has the best bone structure on FC Barcelona? We all know who has the best hair.

Jason Parks: The Cardinals play in the Grapefruit league during the spring, so I didn't see them this time around. I plan on visiting Florida during the GCL. I'm a big Tyrell Jenkins fan, though.

The best bone structure on Barca belongs to Puyol. He also has the best hair, the wettest hair, the wettest body, and the most #want.

sitdancer (DC): What are the chances we'll see Profar in the big leagues before 2014? And how do you see the Andrus / Profar situation play out? Is one of them going to switch position or will one of them be moved via trade?

Jason Parks: I think there is a good chance that Profar gets a cup of coffee at the major league level in 2012, with a good chance to be a feature player on the 25-man roster in 2013. Andrus is a great player, but he is going to be a very young man when he reaches free agency, and given his skill-set, set to receive a payday that will make him one of the highest paid players at his position. That's fantastic news for Elvis, and not a disaster for the Rangers, who have a player waiting in the wings that some believe will eclipse Elvis on the field. Right now the Rangers have a good problem. It's much easier to maneuver around too much talent than not enough talent. These things have a way of working out. Either Elvis gets traded after the season, or Profar and Elvis find homes on the same field. I'm hoping for the latter, because that would be a double-play duo people would pay money to see in action.

Peeig13 (The Second City): If you could change one thing about the podcast (beside forcing Kevin to drink beer sans fruit) what would it be?

Jason Parks: I appreciate all the effort KG takes to not only put the show together, but acquire the music (and the permission to use the music). But if I had to change one thing, I'd change the music. We don't really have similar tastes. I'd like to bring in more variety, like country, rap, metal, prog, etc.

Patricia (Back in AZ): Have you seen my red panties? Also, which pitcher has the highest ceiling - T Walker, S Miller or T Bauer?

Jason Parks: 1.) I haven't. 2). Taijuan Walker has the highest ceiling of that group. He has that rare #1 potential.

Klochner (MN): Ever seen Deadwood? Powers Boothe is awesome in it.

Jason Parks: I have. I thought it was pretty good. Powers Boothe is awesome in everything. I might go as Powers Boothe for Halloween.

Fred (WI): How big a difference is there between Ronald Guzman and Jeimer Candelaria?

Jason Parks: I think there is a big difference between all the players in baseball; each is unique despite sharing similar skills. Guzman is younger and has a different body/athleticism. He could stand 6'6'' and it's unlikely he plays anywhere other than 1B. Candelaria is a better athlete, although he might grow into 1B as well. Both have mature approaches at the plate, with good contact and drive in their swings. Guzman has the higher ceiling in my opinion, with 6/7 on the hit/power tools. Candelaria has already produced in game action, and might be a step or two ahead in the developmental process. Both are high on my list, but I've seen a ton of Guzman and he is fantastic.

PSzucs (Kingston, Ontario): How does it feel to be following DePo?

Jason Parks: It feels like leather pants

Frank Furter (Bun): It is NFL draft season - Would you be as interested in baseball scouting if the sport lent itself to immediate impact by draftees/signees? Or is it all about the space to dream for you?

Jason Parks: Not all scouting is about dreams; that's only one aspect. I enjoy scouting in general, whether that means watching 17-year-olds on the backfields or major leaguers under the bright lights. The scouting and the approach is different, but the challenges still exist and that is what drives me. In my opinion, it's easier to dream and project than it is to watch a proven player and properly diagnose his deficiencies. Advanced scouts probably have the best eyes for weakness on the planet. I'm not to that level, of course, but I've grown in that regard in recent years. I love it all.

matt (kansas city): I've finished brewing the beer for the podcast, but KG won't respond to my email asking for shipping instructions. Did I call your bluff on this or something? How soon should I give up on Mike Montgomery?

Jason Parks: Tell him you are a fedora salesman with a noisy punk band that plays three chords. I bet he responds with urgency. Don't give up on Montgomery. It takes time. He has a chance to be a solid number two/three starter at the major league level. It just might not happen in 2012. He has a few mechanical hurdles to scale, but the stuff is there.

Matt (Arlington): Are Keith Laws' predictions of Darvish winning AL ROY AND CY remotely feasible? And Ronaldo has WAY better hair than Puyol.

Jason Parks: Feasible? Yes. His stuff is very, very good. Ronaldo has a better face and better offensive skill, but his hair requires a team of experts to style. Puyol was born wet and wild. You can't style that much #want.

John (troma): Better QB: Romo or Aikman?

Jason Parks: Romo probably has better numbers, but Aikman was under center for three Super Bowls. No contest for me. AIkman.

Wendy (Madrid): The ETA for Wil Myers is 2012, but Gordon just had a breakout season and the Royals signed Fancoeur to an extension. What is the plan for Myers? Would you rather have him or Domonic Brown?

Jason Parks: 2012 is possible, but Myers might not be a full-time contributor until 2013. At that point, you can re-evaluate the outfield situation. The Royals need arms more than bats, so a trade could always clear space.

I'd take Myers over Brown. Myers is going to be a 6/6 type of hitter.

faztradamus (Work): Yohander Mendez (Rangers) and Yordano Ventura (Royals)... what kind of ceilings are we looking at?

Jason Parks: Different types of players. Mendez is 16-years-old and has yet to pitch stateside; he will probably start in the DSL in order to build arm strength. Ventura is a flamethrower, sitting in the 96-99 range, and has touched over 100 before. The delivery looked better this spring, and the breaking ball actually broke. Mendez's ceiling is still very abstract, but he could have three above-average pitches on a well-proportioned and athletic body all from the left-side. Ventura lacks the same physical projection, but has a near 80-grade pitch in his arsenal. I think he could be a major league reliever, perhaps a closer if a secondary pitch steps up.

Don H. (Oak Park): Fantasy Question: In a dynasty league I can send Chris Sale, Banuelos and Bubba Starling, and cash for BJ Upton and two 1st round draft picks (which are like gold in this league). I rebuilt my team and have an OF of Trout-Gary Brown- Harper (we use LF, CF, RF), and my pitching is stacked to the point where Sale and ManBan wouldn't make my 5-man rotation. Is the trade worth it, or is Starling > my expectations suggest?

Jason Parks: Fantasy Question: Todd Bridges or Gary Coleman? I have a keeper league and I can only protect one of them.

Matt (NJ): Hey Jason, really have enjoyed your spring training articles. Was wondering how you'd rate the gloves of three glove-first SS in the news this spring Freddy Galvis, jose iglesias and andrelton simmons? Any 8s here? Any of them have a chance to to be anything beyond an 8/9 hole hitter?

Jason Parks: Thanks. 8s are very rare. You will see some 8s on the glove of Iglesias, but even the best gloves struggle to live up to that elite grade. I don't see anyone in that group that profiles above an 8/9 hole hitter. You can dream of the what-ifs, and there are always what-ifs that take a player from the present to the future, but I don't see the type of stick necessary to hit atop a major league lineup. But if the gloves prove to be 7+ tools, the skill-set in the field will buttress the offensive deficiencies.

AMetsGuy (Edinburgh): Do you think it likely that Jordany Valdespin could stick in center field and be a good contributor there? Do his tools match up better there than in the middle infield?

Jason Parks: It's possible. He has more than enough athleticism to handle the position, and the arm gives him a valuable weapon. He's doesn't have a left-side of the infield glove, so the outfield makes a lot of sense, actually. I'm a fan.

ttt (Work): Thoughts on Ryan Adams? Not Bryan Adams, come on, he's Canadian.

Jason Parks: I don't have a problem with Bryan Adams. My 8th grade girlfriend gave me a Bryan Adams cassette for our two week anniversary. It was sappy Bryan Adams, but I made it work.

Tim (Seattle): I enjoyed the Paul DePodesta chat yesterday. I also enjoyed the podcast when Kevin asked about your state of mind and you talked about making the transition of living baseball everyday in Arizona and the impending transition back to New York.

Jason Parks: Thanks. This chat is better than DePodesta's chat. Nobody asked him about the red panties worn by his fictional muse. I win by default.

Chris (Cincinnati): Is there a tougher A level rotation than Gerrit Cole, Jameson Taillon, Colton Cain? They are stronger than many AA rotations.

Jason Parks: That's nasty. Two Texans in one rotation? Also, some guy named Gerrit Cole? That's not fair to other teams. I can't wait to see that team in action. Nasty.

matt (fargo): Can Levi Michael make it to double A this year? And will he stick at short?

Jason Parks: Yes; I'm not sold that he can. I think he ends up at 2B, and becomes a solid-average type at the position. He's a total gamer and he gets the most of his tools, but he's not a player I see excelling on the left-side of the diamond.

Kevin D Smith (Little Rock, AR): What do you think about my fantasy team?

Jason Parks: I like it. Who is on it?

ttt (Manhattan): Who is the greatest rapper of all time? Notorious BIG? Tupac? Nas?

Jason Parks: Bun B

Simon (Toronto): How confident are you in profar's bat profiling as above average in the major league. Would a 300/400/500 split be a reasonable expectation or do you think he'll hit for less power?

Jason Parks: I don't think Profar is going to slug .500. He has a plus-plus hit tool, and his approach is extremely refined, so .300/.400 is entirely possible at some point. I think he could hit 10-15 homers eventually, but will be more of a gap-to-gap doubles hitter. Given his defensive skill-set at either SS/2B, hitting for average, getting on-base, and showing decent pop will make him a well above-average player.

Charles (Scottsdale): Why did you stay in Surprise, Arizona in March? Don't you know that Scottsdale is where all the action is?

Jason Parks: I prefer the West Valley because it puts me closer to Rangers, Royals, Reds, Indians, Mariners, Padres.

Scottsdale has a much better scene, especially for nightlife, but I wasn't in Arizona to have a good time. I wanted to hit as many games as possible, hit as many workouts as possible, and write as many reports as possible after I got home. I didn't want any distractions.

Tim (DC): Does someone have to actually be born from Texas to increase their value? What if they are from Kansas or somewhere and went to UT? Does that help or does that not count?

Jason Parks: It helps, but being born in the state trumps all. My brother was born in Idaho. He returned home as an infant and has spent the rest of his life in the state, but it's still a very sore subject. If I need to hit below-the-belt, I'll bring up Idaho.

Jerome (T Hills): I have a farm system draft coming up for an NL only league. Is Starling Marte worth the pick?

Jason Parks: Maybe. Look at this picture of Bill Duke instead: http://www.wearysloth.com/Gallery/ActorsD/4978.gif

Steven (Madison): How would you rank these 3 in ceiling: Kyle Zimmer, Michael Wacha and Marcus Stroman? Thx

Jason Parks: I really like Zimmer, but I haven't seen enough to rank the players with any accuracy. It depends on how you value rotation horses vs potential late-inning arms. Did you prefer the electricity of a late-inning arm or the safety of a solid-average number 3 that chews innings? I tend to lean towards electricity.

Matt (NJ): what happened to mike montgomery? Is it just a problem repeating his delivery or has the stuff taken a step backwards? Any guess on what happens with him?

Jason Parks: He has some mechanical inconsistencies, which isn't uncommon given his length. It will just take time. When he can stay over the ball and maintain his release point, his stuff is very good. The fastball shows some life in the low-90s and will touch higher. The curveball plays well off the fastball and has some depth to it. The changeup has good action and deception, making it effective against RH. If the command is sharp, Montgomery is still the arm that prospect lovers celebrated in 2010. When he's off, well, he's not very good and the stuff is softer and hard to locate. I think he irons it out, but that might be a slow process. He's still young.

mike (utica): can you see a pitching prospect raising his stock this year like taijuan walker did last year?

Jason Parks: Sure. When stuff exists, the threat of magic is always upon us. Take a guy like Tyrell Jenkins. The stuff is there for an explosion.

Behemoth (Scotland): What are your thoughts on the Jairo Beras situation?

Jason Parks: I'd rather not comment on the specifics of the situation, but I'd like to comment on something about the situation that has been bothering me. Lost in the drama is a young kid who just wants to play baseball. This kid is from an area where talented youth often gets exploited and taken advantage of, and most of this occurs before major league teams are able to involve themselves in the process. I don't know how old Beras is, and the sad truth is that I really doubt that Beras actually knows how old he is. Think about that for a second. This isn't a baseball story. This is the story of a kid who might get screwed because of a baseball story. I don't care if he ends up with the Rangers or the Yankees or the Diablos Rojos del Mexico. I just want the kid to be allowed to sign for his worth, come to the United States, and play the game that will allow him to change the fortunes of so many people in his existence. This kid shouldn't be punished. It pisses me off.

Joshua (Seattle): Jason, I know you like White Sox system questions. Given the new rules that govern draft and international spending, how much longer will it take for them to at least get their farm system to average? On one hand, they never paid over-slot for prospects but, on the other, they now can't start doing so.

Jason Parks: The White Sox have actually been able to develop major league talent in the past, despite having an approach that doesn't find them throwing money at high-ceiling players. Now that the rest of baseball has to play on their field, I'm sure they can build the farm back up to the average level. It might take some time, as their system now is as weak as it possibly could be, but a few good drafts and they will jump back into the pack. It's not hard to be average; rather, it's hard to be exceptional at either extreme.

Kyle Dekker (Saint Paul): Eric Hosmer over/under 26 homers this year? I've got a case of Schell's Firebrick Ale riding on it.

Jason Parks: 25 homers in 2012; 30+ homers in 2013

Japhet Amador (Distrito Federal): Am I the fattest baseball player you've ever seen? I'm definitely pushing 4 bills at this point, that's some serious #want.

Jason Parks: I've seen you in person since 2010 and you keep getting fatter. I remember when you weighed 210. You are definitely over 300 at this point, and could approach 400 in the future. Look, I like the food in D.F. as well, but damn guey. Step away from the table. Your bat speed is gasping for air.

Steve McManaman (Some Merceyside Bar): Spurs finish 3, 4 or 5 this year?

Jason Parks: 4

Greg (boston): Do you prefer pro or amateur scouting?

Jason Parks: I prefer early pro (complex league).

sportspopery (cubicle hell): If you had to choose for a trade-preference list, would you prefer Tyler Skaggs, Archie Bradley, or Trevor Bauer?

Jason Parks: Bradley. He could be very special. He has the highest ceiling on that list.

Bill Simmons (Grantland): Are the Red Sox even going to win 85 games this season?

Jason Parks: Yes, they will win over 85 games. Shouldn't you be in the back yard pouring water on your prose?

Will T. (Raleigh, N.C.): When attending a minor league game, what are some basic things to look for when scouting a player?

Jason Parks: It has to start with the body. Where is it now, what will it look like in the future? Is the player athletic in their movements? How easy it for them to repeat those movements? After the body, start looking at the tools. Look for how they work now and how they might work in the future. When you build a skeleton of a player, you start with the body and work your way out.

Andrew Stoeton (drunkjaysfans.com): Brett Lawrie will be in the Hall Of Fame by 2033, True or False?

Jason Parks: False. He's a damn fine player, and I think he will have a damn fine career, but not many damn fine players who have damn fine careers make the hall of fame.

geo (lunch): Royals have been using Hosmer in RF a bit this spring so they don't have to bench Billy Butler during interleague. Adam Foster tweeted last night that Hosmer is already a better defensive OF'er than Wil Myers. You buy? (Hosmer has only had two plays in right.)

Jason Parks: Hosmer's a very good athlete and a mature player, but I think it's a bit sensational to make that suggestion on such a small viewing sample. Some people just like to say things to get people talking. I get it. Hosmer might be a better defensive outfielder than Myers, but I've only seen a very small sample size. He certainly has the tools to be better. I've seen a lot of Myers and I don't think he's terrible out there.

hankfiddich (Indianapolis, IN): Which chapter(s) did you write for the big BP '12 book?

Jason Parks: I can't say. I wrote multiple ones.

DCoopYM (Amarillo, TX): Hey Jason - enjoy all your writing. My question is about Robbie Ross, I knew of him in the minors, but really want to know the scoop now that he's on the big league roster. What about him turned so many heads this spring? Do you see him staying in Arlington long term? What about his stuff makes him effective? Go.

Jason Parks: Robbie Ross was the same pitcher this spring that he has been in the past. From a low-slot and a high leg, Ross can disguise his release, which allows his 89-92 mph fastball to jump on hitters. The pitch has natural cutting action and sink, which makes it difficult to lift and effective against both RH/LH. His slider is another plus pitch, normally thrown in the mid-80s with some tilt. He attacks hitters in the zone with his arsenal, breaking bats and missing barrels. He lacks size and his third pitch is fringy, but the two pitch mix is major league quality. As nice and gentle as Ross is off the field, he's as ruthless on it, challenging hitters and owning his stuff. If the third pitch comes around, he could become an innings-eater starter. But for now, he's a major league reliever, and that will push him forward in the developmental process. You can't simulate the major league experience at the minor league level.

Phil (Pittsburgh): 1)Have you ever heard any negative stories or anecdotes about the Pirates' developmental system? 2)Do you ever see the advances in weight training, nutrition and medicine ever pushing or changing the values of the scouting scale?

Jason Parks: 1.) I hear stories about every system. Some are based on fact and some are just stories. 2) I don't. I think players will continue to get bigger and faster, but the 20/80 scale (for the most part) is on a bell curve, so the evaluators will adjust to the pool of talent.

thebeej21 (Houston): Who should the Astros take with the number 1 pick Appell, Gausman, Zunino, Buxton, Giolito?

Jason Parks: Appell

Behemoth (Scotland): Tell me someone obscure who you think has a chance to be really, really good.

Jason Parks: Brewers infielder Orlando Arcia

mo2rose (toronto): what Jays prospects turns on your baseball hormones the most and why?

Jason Parks: Marisnick: Tools
Nicolino: stuff and extreme pitchability
Syndergaard: Stuff/Texan

stevenpsu78 (York pa): What are you hearing about Oscar Taveras? Potential stud or lack of #want?

Jason Parks: Potential stud. His swing is going to bother scouts up the chain, and he's also going to hit all the way up the chain. It's not always pretty, and he swings the bat like he's trying to kill someone breaking into his home, but it works.

Hopjake (Kansas City): out of the 2011 draft who breaks out the most this year?

Jason Parks: Lindor becomes the top positional talent in the class; Bradley passes the arms.

Hopjake (Kansas City): Which team is going to have the best rotation in the minors?

Jason Parks: Bradenton (Pirates)

ttt (Manhattan): Have you ever thought about interviewing someone on the podcast and having Kevin sit in the background? I think you should interview Jorge...

Jason Parks: I haven't thought about it. I like to drift into thought during the interviews. It's how I stay sane. Interviewing Jorge will not keep me sane.

Bombo Rivera (Montevideo): How does Ronald Guzman compare to other teenagers you've seen on back fields over the years? How would you characterize your optimism? Wild? Cautious?

Jason Parks: He's one of the best. My optimism is measured, but I can ramp it up should the need arise. The kid is going to struggle along the way, and that reality has a tendency to disappoint people. Attach yourself to the Guzman bandwagon while you can. It's going to get bumpy, but the finish line is superstardom.

tommybones (brooklyn): Anyone notice the irony in Red Dawn... local insurgents using "terror" tactics against an invading superpower's army? And we're rooting for them. Classic.

Jason Parks: I;ve spent a considerable amount of time in my life digging into the DNA of Red Dawn. I might quit BP in order to further explore the subject. It's fascinating.

Bryant (San Diego): Domoromo, Tate, Rincon - who ends up having the greatest impact on a MLB roster?

Jason Parks: Tate. He's still a game-changer if he reaches his ceiling. That's an impact that can felt. Domoromo and Rincon might contribute, but any impact would be minimal in scope compared to Tate. I haven't given up on him yet. He was really good when I saw him this ST.

rblunck (Chicago): Wolverine!

Jason Parks: It's basically the cast of the Outsiders dropped into Colorado and tasked with fighting Russians and Cubans in violent gunfights. It's simply the best.

Not JT (Riding): Which young arm in COL has a better season this year? Nicasio or Pomeranz?

Jason Parks: Pomeranz. He's going to be a monster.

LoyalRoyal (Kansas): Do you see a significant rebound in Adam Dunn? Best guess at HR and OBP...

Jason Parks: I did. I saw bat speed; he pulled inside velocity (94+) on several occasions without cheating. I think he's going to hit for power again. OBP has never been an issue. He could hit 30+ bombs.

LoyalRoyal (LV, KS): While your man-crush on Bubba Starling has been obvious, what are the odds on the Royals regretting Bundy (who I felt was #1 on their draft board) not falling one more spot as most draftniks thought?

Jason Parks: Well, they needed arms, so I think they are always going to dream of Bundy falling to #5. But the player that is really going to hurt is Archie Bradley, who the Royals let slide to #7. Bradley is going to pitch atop a major league rotation someday, and the Royals don't have an arm in the system that can boast of that future. I understand going for Starling; he could be an elite player. That said, for a team that needs arms, Bradley might have been too good to pass up.

jahoffmn (chicago): Which is more impressive, Puyol's #wet or Messi's #want?

Jason Parks: #wet always trumps #want

Kelvin (Brookfield): Besides watching Drake/Wheelchair Jimmy on Degrassi (and Small Wonder, Mr. Belvedere, et al.) what modern TV shows do you view?

Jason Parks: I watched Breaking Bad. That's about it. I'm not home all that often, and when I am, I tend to stick with the shows I'm already comfortable with like Mr. Belvedere.

beaker (georgia): better probability to hit ceiling -- guzman or akins

Jason Parks: This might be a bit shocking given his age and current level, but Ronald Guzman has a better chance of reaching his ceiling.

Josh (Chicago): Favorite Delillo work? Why?

Jason Parks: Libra. The way he moves the characters around the narrative is just brillant.

Jeff (Springfield): How do you feel about the Cards having Taveras and Rosenthal make the jump to AA to start the year out. Too much to soon?

Jason Parks: No. It's good to push talented players. Double-A is a big jump, and it will probably force the players to deal with obstacles (failure) that they aren't familiar with. Failure and response to failure is a huge part of the developmental process.

Bill (New York): I just received a warning from my boss because I was reading this chat during work hours. I'm now on my break and on my iPhone and I wanted to mention how much of an asshole my boss is.

Jason Parks: I just wanted people to see this. I need to get a refill on my drink. I'll be back i n 3 minutes.

Dennis (LA): What do you see as James Paxton's upside and when do you see him contributing in the majors?

Jason Parks: Solid number three starter capable of delivering a beauty when his secondary stuff and command is in sync. I think he could contribute to the major league squad now out of the 'pen, but should get a taste at some point this season. He's good.

Martin Cove (Cobra Kai Dojo): Johnny would have been an excellent Wolverine.

Jason Parks: Zabka? Cmon. Swayze would have hated Zabka. Swayze was a greaser. Zabka was a rich kid.

Tango (Seattle): Long time Podcast fan, first time participant: I'm ready to be one of the fool drive my ass off to see minor league talent, at least in Washington. Point me to some must see so that I don't regret shit in McDonalds on the way.

Jason Parks: Spokane will be loaded with talent. The new CBA should push more draftees to the short-season leagues in 2012. It should be a good time.

JoeTinker (Chicago): You sure you don't want to hear about my fantasy team? I have Lindor and Bradley

Jason Parks: I'm listening...

yeamon (Champaign, IL): "Boys! Avennnnge me!" But seriously, do you share KG's love for Gary Brown? And do you think he will reach MLB this season?

Jason Parks: I really like Brown, yes. He has a major league quality skill-set at a premium position. I have some questions about the bat against major league pitching, but I always have those questions. He could reach the majors this season.

Alex Anthopoulos (Cleveland): 2+ years later, should I be happy with what I got in return for Roy Halladay?

Jason Parks: There isn't a return big enough, in mu opinion.

jaymoff (Salem, OR): If Jorge Alfaro takes more than 15 BBs this year is the year considered a success?

Jason Parks: I'd like to see the approach improve, as it will help the overall offensive skill-set. Not setting any statistical markers, though. I just want to see progression.

greg (Boston): Who are better athletes? Tennis players or soccer players?

Jason Parks: Soccer players are the best athletes in the world.

DF (Wilmington, NC): Did you see Billy Hamilton in AZ? I didn't realize he was even there but he got into a game briefly in the last week or so. Where was he before that?why would he not get any action until so late in ST?

Jason Parks: Yes, late in camp. I didn't see him in games early. I'm not sure why he wasn't getting JiC (just in case) looks. It depends on the team. Sometimes its better to get reps on the backfield than to sit on the bench at the big boy field.

Keith (Chicago): Jason, what team is going to win The Stanley Cup this season?

Jason Parks: The Nambla Ice Warriors

Hip2Hops (Seattle): How long before Teheran lands in ATL rotation for good? How bad was his spring?

Jason Parks: I dont think it was that bad. I think Teheran lands in ATL to stay at some point in the summer, and he makes all the bandwagon jumpers look like fools come 2013. It's easy to forget how young he is and how much development he still requires. I urge people to stay with this kid. He has the stuff to make a difference in a major league rotation.

Don (San Juan): Would you as a writer rather have a smaller fanbase that really gets and enjoys your work, or a larger fanbase that doesn't get you at all, but thinks it's cool and trendy to say they read your work?

Jason Parks: I'd rather have a smaller fanbase that really gets my work. The second option pays more, but is empty.

Smithy (LA): Kate Upton, Lily Carter, or Gracie Glam?

Jason Parks: Backdraft is now on AMC

Jim (Kansas): Thoughts on "The Pale King" (if you've read it)?

Jason Parks: I read it. I liked it, but I found myself analyzing and assigning ownership to individual lines. It felt strangely inauthentic and I wasn't able to fully invest in the work.

Or Moyal (Denton): The Rangers' starting outfield next year is...

Jason Parks: Ian Kinsler, Leonys Martin, and Nelson Cruz

yeamon (Champaign, IL): You should know, I've been employing an algorithm that tracks Actual Baseball Content on this chat, and you are well over 60% at this point. Congratulations, my friend.

Jason Parks: I watched Trading Places earlier this morning. 80-grade classic. Brought back memories of youth.

Rob (Iraq): Jason, I don't have a question but I wanted to thank you for your wonderful articles, chats, and podcasts. It helps the day go by quicker over here.

Jason Parks: You are welcome. I appreciate it.

Rick (MN): Is it wrong that I'd rather watch the Twins' Low-A team rather than the actual Twins?

Jason Parks: No, that's probably a good idea.

Vanessa (Sweden): Will the Blue Jays be the best 4th place team in baseball again?

Jason Parks: I assume so. They just don't have enough to eclipse the top 3. I think they would walk away with the AL Central.

Steven (Toronto): Is there any chance we get a BP related event in Toronto this season? Or perhaps a live recording of the podcast in Toronto?

Jason Parks: I'd love either. I'd be all in.

Wendy (Madrid): Would it makes sense for the Royals long term to make Hosmer the RF and Myers the 1B if Hosmer is the better athlete?

Jason Parks: Sure. I can see that. Or Myers could play LF if Gordon needs to move to 1B. Lots of options. When it comes to Myers, its about his bat. He's not a bad athlete and he will develop into a decent RF, but his value is tied to the stick.

Matt (Tx): How can Powers Booth shoot an RPG through the open window of a Soviet helicopter and it NOT blow up?

Jason Parks: That's a very special skill. #Booth

Scott Lucas (Newberg Report): Do I really know what I'm doing or do I just rehash minor league box scores?

Jason Parks: You really know what you are doing. You put in the time on the backfields of Arizona. You put in the time at various minor league parks. Legit.

DCorriveau (Toronto): Do you ever go to Florida for ST instead of Arizona?

Jason Parks: Not for ST. In Arizona, everything is very close together; can see every team/most facilities. Hitting Florida for GCL.

pavaexpress (Northern VA): Will you be dead before the pirates break .500? If so, can I have your job?

Jason Parks: Depends on when I die. I think the Pirates will find .500 in the next few seasons. You can have my job now. You just have to show more #want than I do.

jaymoff (Salem, OR): Most impressive prospect no one is/was talking about prior to Spring Training but will be soon enough?

Jason Parks: Cubs infielder Javier Baez. The bat could be special.

Milby (Das Biergarten): I understand that the significance of spring numbers falls somewhere between very little and balls - but for a minor leaguer, does their approach, on a scouting level, against significantly more advanced pitching mean something? I'm thinking specifically of Starling Marte - who put up good numbers, and also demonstrated his tools in live action against big league pitching. Gotta count for something, right?

Jason Parks: Excellent comment. Yes; anytime a younger, inexperienced player can face an older, more experienced player, the younger player will benefit immensely. That's why scouting ST is so important. You get to see match-ups that don't normally exist, and the information you can extract from those match-ups is invaluable.

Daniel Norris (Florida): Do I have number 2 starter upside?

Jason Parks: You do.

Tim (DC): This round of CL has sucked. Next round almost has to be good though. I have a feeling that the final won't be another El Clasico.

Jason Parks: I'm betting on another El Clasico, with Real emerging as the champions

Sidney (Pittsburgh): You're the Owner of the Pirates and they finish below .500 this season, would you fire Neal Hunington? If not, at what point does the major league record matter?

Jason Parks: The major league record always matters, even when we say it doesn't. If the Pirates tank, and some of the moves that Huntington made to better the team fall flat, he needs to answer for those failures.

Mike (Dover AF Base): Kove shoots up with Horse-engineered HGH, True or False: Rapture ensues.

Jason Parks: I believe this is true.

thebeej21 (Houston): Barring injuries, who has the better career, Trout or Hosmer?

Jason Parks: Great question. Hosmer, but it's going to be close. Trout is going to bring big defense, big speed, and lots of hits. Hosmer is going to hit for average and power. Both should be perennial MVP candidates

Vern (Philly): Who ends up having the better career, Harper or Lawrie?

Jason Parks: Another great question: Harper, but it might be considered a failure because he doesn't become the greatest player in the history of baseball. Lawrie is going to make a few all-star teams, and could challenge for an MVP at his peak. Harper is going to hit 50+ homers on multiple occasions and win multiple MPV awards.

Allen (San Diego): Tebow is now a Jet. Did NY get about 8.134% more Christorific?

Jason Parks: Nah. We have a way of deflecting that stuff in the city.

Jack (Boston): Why exactly are Texans so proud of Texas? I'll grant you chili, brisket and Austin but everything else just seems like Missouri with a dash of oil money classing it up. You're an artist that split for Brooklyn, I think deep in your heart of hearts you agree.

Jason Parks: Deep in my heart, I'm still a Texan. It's hard to explain why Texans feel such pride in their roots, but we all do and we all know what it means.

Keith Law (Arizona): Why wasn't I invited to the BBQ? Would food did you serve?

Jason Parks: This is why.

michaelmcduffe (canada): Edward Salcedo. One of the few minor league players the 2012 BP Annual attached the word 'superstar' to in any context. Is his ceiling really that high?

Jason Parks: I didn't write the comment. I disagree that his ceiling is a superstar. He could develop into a very good bat, but I don't see a superstar skill-set.

Stephan (Vancouver): Have you ever been to Canada before?

Jason Parks: Yes. Several times.

Mike W (Chicago): What's the aggregate score of Barca - Chelsea?

Jason Parks: 4-2 Torres fails to score.

faztradamus (work): In power order: Harper-Stanton-Sano? All 8's?

Jason Parks: Harper and Stanton are 8. Sano could be an 8 if everything goes as planned. Not many 8s in the world.

Hoot (a Great Lakes city): How determined is Jesus Montero to be a superstar?

Jason Parks: How determined are you to reach your ceiling? It's very difficult for an outsider to determine. The majority of people in the world fall short of the ceiling their gifts suggest is possible. Montero won' likely be the exception, but he will still become a damn fine hitter.

Xander Bogaerts (Wicked Boston): Where do I end up defensively?

Jason Parks: Right field

Ryan (Washington): How much longer is this chat going to go on for? I get off work in 35 minutes.

Jason Parks: I'm feeling strong. I might take until until 6, which would be a five-hour chat

Soft (Florida): Is your brother a Hermit ?

Jason Parks: Soft.

DFW BB (Lone Star State): Jason anyone in the Rangers farm system with #1 Starter potential?

Jason Parks: I don't think so.

Dennis (LA): Thank you for answering my earlier question. Assuming Michael Pineda's shoulder is OK, what do you see as his upside? Chances of achieving that upside?

Jason Parks: NUmber two starter, capable of chewing a ton of innings and blowing people away when it comes together. I'm still a huge fan of Pineda and I hope he is healthy.

glp (not telling): As a Missourian who has been to Texas multiple times, I would like to assure Jack in Boston that Texas is nothing like Missouri.

Jason Parks: Chat war

Gaby (Houston): What in the world happened to Brett Wallace? This site and Baseball America hyped him up as a plus plus college bat before he was drafted.

Jason Parks: I think he was. He didn't make the secondary and tertiary adjustments that are necessary to find success at the major league level. They adjusted to him, and he was left twisting in the wind. If the bat speed can return to form, he can rebound.

edwardarthur (Illinois): I've often seen reference to "good velocity for a lefty". Are lefties graded differently and, if so, is it just because of rarity, or does a velocity of X actually play up for a lefty?

Jason Parks: Lefties (generally) get a little extra love on the fastball grade than righties. If a lefty is throwing 90-92, their fastball might be assigned plus velo whereas a righty would not. People like lefties more than righties. They are the chosen ones.

ttt (Manhattan): Any thoughts on Luis Heredia? Reports seem to be that he's really showing something despite only being 17. Where do you think he will start the season?

Jason Parks: He could be a special arm; a legit number 1. He still has to learn how to actually pitch, using a diverse arsenal in sequence. The fastball is already quite good, and the secs will get there. The Pirates will probably take it slow with Heredia, as the arm is very young and the arsenal still immature. He will be worth the patience.

Steven (Boston): Can Brandon Jacobs eventually crack the BOS lineup? Is there room if Bogaerts ends up in RF?

Jason Parks: I don't think Jacobs will crack the Boston lineup. The bat could be good, but he's limited defensively and I don't see the bat being THAT good in the end. On the other hand, Bogaerts bat will force the issue and find a way to get time on a roster.

John (Chicago): I have the BP annual with Dunn on the cover in my bathroom. I read it there. I understand that so many voices go into each section, but I really miss bylines.

Jason Parks: I wouldn't mind it. I want people to know that I wrote certain things.

jungy brogan (northwest): besides lindor and profar, who else projects to be a top-flight SS in the minors?

Jason Parks: Nobody else. Machado could play the role for while, but he might end up at 3B. I like his bat more than either Profar or Lindor. Hak-Ju Lee has the stuff to stay at the position, but he isn't in the same class. It's a very rare group; a top commodity in the game.

poldytow (Boston, MA): Jason, Ignoring contract, if you were running a team, would you rather have 32 year old Albert Pujols or 22 year old Eric Hosmer? In what year do you think Hosmer will become better than Pujols?

Jason Parks: Contract aside, I'd prefer to have Pujols for the next two or three seasons, and then Hosmer every year after that. If I were running a team and had to build around a player, I'd go Hosmer. He will challenge for an MVP before he leaves Kansas City

Diego (Milan): What shows more #want: Puyol's #wet locks, or my colonial magnificence?

Jason Parks: Very close, but #wet always beats #dry

Jordan Akins Dad (USA): Jordan Akins. What up?

Jason Parks: Great user name. Great athlete that has started taking the steps to be a great baseball player. Long way to go, but damn that ceiling is high. It's Matt Kemp high.

Silv (NY, NY): What the hell is going on with Jason Heyward?

Jason Parks: I wish I knew. I keep waiting for the next step forward and I keep getting another step back. Frustrating.

Quentin (Chicago): So how do you feel about Roger Clemens claiming to be a Texan, yet he was born in Ohio??? Or better yet, St. Louis claims David Freese as a native son, yet he's from Texas...

Jason Parks: Clemens has put in the wrench work necessary to earn my respect on the Texas front. That said, he wasn't born on Texas soil, so I have to judge him accordingly.

Ben (LA): What are your thoughts on Diego Forlan? He's a marvelous looking man and displays lots of #want

Jason Parks: Lots of Forlan questions today, which I enjoy. I love Forlan. His #dry colonial appearance can control the box and his #want is unquestioned. I just wish he was younger and healthier.

Jordan (Driving to Bucknell): If you could only watch one player not named Hosmer take batting practice and one pitcher throw a bullpen for the rest of your life, who would it be ? Prospect or Major Leaguer.

Jason Parks: Bryce Haper or Josh Hamilton for batting practice; Yu Darvish or Trevor Bauer for bullpens.

ttt (Manhattan): Did you read the Slate article on minor leaguers? http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2012/04/minor_league_union_thousands_of_pro_baseball_players_make_just_1_100_per_month_where_is_their_c_sar_ch_vez_.single.html Shouldn't they be paid more?

Jason Parks: I'll check it out.

RoughRiders (Frisco): What is your opinion on Olt? Any chance that the Rangers make room for him at 1st next year?

Jason Parks: Olt is a fantastic 3B, who would only be a 1B if you really needed his bat in the lineup. He clearly has more value as a 3B, but that position is unavailable in Texas. I still see Olt as a trade chip, one that could net the Rangers an arm or a bat at the deadline. If he is to be a 1B for the team, I think his value takes a hit but the stick should produce enough to justify the move.

Milby (Biergarten): Fun question - if Rey Ordonez had been left handed, would he still have been an above average defensive SS?

Jason Parks: Awesome question: The answer is no. The throws between 3B/SS would sink him.

Don H. (Oak Park): When is Dallas going to get a professional football team?

Jason Parks: Please send us your address so Joe Hamrahi and I can show up at your doorstep with a free copy of BP 12 and a free trip to the emergency room of your choice. But to answer the question: I'm not sure. I'm not happy with the results since Jerry took over all football operations.

Stephan (Vancouver): What Canadian cities did you visit? Was it for scouting reasons?

Jason Parks: Not scouting reasons. Been to Montreal several times.

Mikael (NY): Had Josh Hamilton never turned to drugs or alcohol, there'd be no discussion who the bets player in baseball is, right?

Jason Parks: Well, in 2010 he was the best player in baseball, even with the history of drug and alcohol abuse. If he stayed clean from jump street, yes, I think Hamilton would be viewed as one of the best players of the generation.

faztradamus (work): What's a "realistic" estimation of what Bubba Starling could do at his peak? .300/30(hr) seems to be a fugure you feel comfortable throwing on guys (Rendon, J. Montero- in previous chats). Think Starling can reach that? What about the wheels?

Jason Parks: Not sure about the average, but he could hit 30+ bombs, steal 30+ bases, and play well above-average defense in centerfield. That's the ceiling. That's an elite ceiling. The problem is that his floor is very, very low.

Mike (Utica, NY): Who do you think can be the pitcher of the next generation, Kershaw, Moore, Strasburg, other?

Jason Parks: Kershaw now and Kershaw in the future.

Mike (Utica, NY): Jake Skole, do you think he has a future with the Rangers?

Jason Parks: Sure, as a fourth outfielder in 2015

Cards fan in SF (in SF): Does Matt Adams have a shot at becoming Cards' 1B? If so, how does he perform?

Jason Parks: Yes; his bat is legit. His body is very big, but it doesn't prevent his bat from working very well. Could be the full-time guy at the position by 2013.

Mike (Utica, NY): You ceiling of Harper makes him sound like the next Mantle. Who has a higher ceiling Harper or Stanton?

Jason Parks: Harper.

yeamon (Champaign, IL): BP's Neil deMause just published an article on Slate, making the case for the A's moving to Brooklyn, NY instead of San Jose. What would you think of having Moneyball in your backyard (probably next to Juan Deli)?

Jason Parks: I know people in the org, so I would enjoy having them in my backyard. They would still finish 3/4 for the next five years.

Matt (Austin, TX): Best part of Red Dawn, for me, was when they pissed in the radiator. As a kid, this was poiniant.

Jason Parks: It meant something, I know. It spoke of defiance on multiple levels. I think I pissed in my parent's radiator at some point during that summer. I believe I was punished severely.

Karl (Chicago): More Spring Training drunk driving shenanigans. Are there no taxi cabs in Scottsdale or Sarasota? Should the next CBA include harsh punishments for DUI convictions, say a 50-game suspension? Which is more serious, applying some steroid cream or drunk driving?

Jason Parks: Driving drunk is more serious. It's a big problem. I'd like to see baseball crack the whip with this issue.

jared (mass): What is your take on robbie erlin joe wieland? See them having a impact

Jason Parks: Both will have an impact this season, and Wieland could end up coming back to bite the Rangers in a big way. His stuff continues to improve, and the kid is a competitor.

Josh (Toronto): Is unrealistic to suggest that Bryce Harper is the best prospect, in terms of ceiling only, in the history of baseball?

Jason Parks: Its very realistic to suggest that.

Rick (MN): John Stamos?

Jason Parks: Beach Boys reunion?

Mike (Utica, NY): What's your take on Eddie Rosario, can he make it at 2nd and what is his ceiling?

Jason Parks: I think he can handle 2B; athleticism is present/enough arm/awareness. I think his ceiling is probably a solid-average regular with a chance for more if the bat reaches its potential. Not a superstar.

Donovan (St. Pete's): Does Matt Adams comp favorably to Prince Fielder (bat, power, body)?

Jason Parks: No. He has a good bat with some pop. He doesn't have Fielder power; he isn't going to hit 50 bombs at the major league level. He's just a guy with some power who might hit enough to be a major league regular. Fielder is one of the best power bats in baseball.

ttt (Manhattan): What is more valuable, a catcher who is an offensive 5 and a defensive 6 or a short stop who is an offensive 5 or a defensive 6?

Jason Parks: Great question: For me, it would depend on the player and makeup of the team in question. I'd be tempted to go with the shortstop because its very difficult to find a 6 shortstop with a 5 bat.

Mike (Utica, NY): Do you think Harper can hit 20 HR's this year I have a 20-1 bet that he will and I would get 400 if he does?

Jason Parks: I don't think so. I don't think he will get enough opportunities.

jared (mass): Followup question Erlin #3 ceiling?? Wieland #2 ceiling Or am i wrong. Thank u for the lengthy chat

Jason Parks: Erlin will be a guy that we undersell and then he adjusts and makes us look foolish. I'd say 3/4 with Erlin and 2/3 with Wieland.

Dennis (LA): You are an animal! Do you think Chris Sale can become a successful starting pitcher? If so, what is his upside?

Jason Parks: I prefer him in the 'pen because of his delivery and his arsenal. He has tremendous upside because he has very good stuff, but as I said, I don't see it staying consistent in a rotation over the course of a full-season.

faztradamus (work): Is Gordon Beckham ever going to repeat his rookie season, or is he the girl that peaked in high school?

Jason Parks: Standard rant: It all comes down to adjustment. The talent that made Beckham as first-round pick and allowed him to find success early on in his career still exists. He just needs to adjust so that those attributes can find utility on the field. I think he finds it again.

Shawn (CA): Do you think Sonny Gray can stick in the rotation? With McCarthy and Colon sure to be dealt, how long until Gray, Parker and Peacock are up for good?

Jason Parks: I do. I assume that rotation is very young by this fall.

John (Pittsburgh): What players do you receive the most questions about?

Jason Parks: Jurickson Profar, Robbie Grossman, and Bryce Harper

Mike (Utica, NY): Does the power begin to develop this year for Nick Castellanos?

Jason Parks: I think it will start to tease, but it won't fully erupt until Castellanos reaches Double-A

Tim (Seattle): Do you ever have flashes of revelation about the Seattle farm system from your existential quest in Arizona?

Jason Parks: I like watching the Seattle farm system; always have. Lots of talent on every field. They up the challenge by removing the names on the back of the jersey, so you actually have to scout by sight and not reputation. It's difficult, but I like it.

Mike (Utica, NY): Have you heard of any spring reports on the Jays arms Nicolino, Syndergaard, Hutchinson, and Norris? What's your perfect world ceiling for Nicolino and Syndergaard?

Jason Parks: I have heard several reports, and most of them were glowing. I think both Nicolino and Syndergaard could be #2 types. The reports on Nicollino have been downright masturbatory.

kramer (anytown): independent of results, best prospect you've ever seen?

Jason Parks: Clayton Kershaw in the minors was pretty stupid good. On the offensive side, I'd have to say Bryce Harper. I'd like to say someone unique, but he has two 80 tools as a teenager and he can bring them into games. It's not normal in any way. He's the best.

Francois (Toronto): Archie Bradley v Taijuan Walker... who you got?

Jason Parks: Walker.

carp1626 (MO): Hosmer and Harper enter the Thunderdome, who leaves?

Jason Parks: Hosmer. He's Koveian tough

ttt (Manhattan): Thanks for answering all of my questions today. What are you drinking (almost 4 hours later)?

Jason Parks: Almost five hours. I'm drinking the fumes of my remaining #want.

Marcus (Vancouver): Is there any chance Vancouver ever gets a MLB team? This city is too big and wealthy to only have a Low A team.

Jason Parks: I'd love to see a team in Vancouver. I'm not sure of the likelihood, but I'd support it.

Tim (Seattle): I think Bun B is a great rapper but I give Scarface credit for being my highest rated Texas rapper. He would be a 77 on a 20-80 scale and Bun B is a 74

Jason Parks: What about Z-Ro?

joe (tx): Ramon Mendez ceiling?

Jason Parks: I see him as a reliever, but I've also seen him flash three pitches before. The arm itself is very easy and extremely fast, and it makes it easy to dream on the plus-plus velocity in bursts and the sharp slider. I think he ends up in the 'pen, and I think the ceiling is an 8th inning type with some closer potential if the command sharpens up.

JD's corner (Your screen): Travel back 2 years, Nolan brings you in for an executive decision....no pressure JP Do you give Cliff Lee the extra year or let him walk & why?

Jason Parks: I was nervous about the year at the time, but pitching is a premium and if the check writers gave me the go-ahead, I'd sign Lee to the deal. Having Lee on your team gives you a chance in any series. He's what teams covet the most.

Tim (Seattle): Is it possible that Pablo Sandoval will compete for NL MVP?

Jason Parks: I don't think so. I think sportswriters secretly judge fat people.

Mike (Utica, NY): What doesn't make Nicolino a #1 ceiling starter?

Jason Parks: The stuff is really good but it plays up with feel, which I'm not bashing; it's actually quite awesome. But #1 starters are rare, and the majority of them have easy plus fastballs that can overwhelm hitters. If the fastball ticks up during the developmental process its possible, but there is nothing wrong with a #2 ceiling.

Jason Parks: Still a few hundred questions left in the queue, so you guys provided the #want. I tried to get to as many as possible before my hands started to cramp, but alas, I failed. I'll do another chat very soon. So much to talk about. Thanks again. You guys were 70-grade today. Take care

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