Thursday, January 24, 2008

Dusty Brown's More Than Just A Good Porn Name

It could be the name of a major league catcher some time soon. Here's a somewhat recent article on the Red Sox prospect. Brown's a 25-year-old righty, who was promoted to Triple-A Pawtucket last year. He may be the best defensive catcher in the Red Sox system, and from what I've heard he's got a heck of an arm.

I would be surprised if he wasn't brought in to compete for the back up catcher job in Spring Training. And even if he doesn't win it outright, he might could be awarded it later in the year if Mirabelli continues his poor hitting. Brown's a clear underdog, having been drafted in the 38th round of the 2000 draft. But he's doing better than expected, having hit .268/.344/.453 last year in Portland.

8 comments:

jb said...

Projecting Clay Buchholz

[quote]
http://www.rotoauthority.com/2008/01/the-clay-buchho.html

It's not easy to figure out a good projection for phenom Clay Buchholz. We only have 61.3 innings spent above Double A. Buchholz absolutely dominated in 86.2 innings at Double A. He threw a no-hitter in the bigs. Scouts and stats both love the 23 year-old.

However, no major projection system will commit to anything better than a 3.98 ERA and 1.35 WHIP. He's projected to throw 135 innings, tops. What gives here?

I'm not sure how other systems come up with their IP. I've got Buchholz at 165. Are people projecting low innings totals because of Tim Wakefield's presence, or because of Buchholz's shoulder fatigue at year's end? He tossed 150 innings in '07; it's hard to see why he shouldn't add 15 on top of that. And I'm fairly certain that he can outpitch Wake.

Projected peripherals:

8.5 K/9
3.3 BB/9
8.6 H/9
0.85 HR/9
Result: 3.86 ERA and 1.32 WHIP

Believe it or not, that would rank as the most optimistic Buchholz projection out there. But he seems capable of more than this. After K/9s over 12 in the minors, why can't he whiff a batter an inning? With a BB/9 of 2.3 in Double A, couldn't his control be better? And the hit and HR rates are pretty much just conservative guesses (and still less conservative than other systems).

All told the above numbers would be worth $11.25, ranking him 42nd among starters for me. I have Yovani Gallardo at $15.89 currently. I stated pretty firmly that Gallardo would out-earn Buchholz by $10 in '08; I have officially changed my stance (hey, it's January, I'm allowed). I have to say, though, that Buchholz seems to have a lot of possible variance. ERAs anywhere from 3.50 to 4.50 would not surprise me. And an IP count of anything from 100-180 seems possible too. On the other hand Gallardo seems a good bet for 180 innings and an ERA under 4.00.

Buchholz is more in the Blanton/Bonderman/Wainwright range of value. Clay is going 197th. Blanton is going 193rd, Bonderman 159th, and Wainwright 173rd. Buchholz seems to be going around the right spot.
[/quote]

Royal Rooters said...

Thanks for the link, that was an interesting article. I was never all that surprised by the low innings projections for Buchholz as I don't think they're a negative judgement on the pitcher, but rather a testament to the depth of the Red Sox pitching staff. I don't know of a single other team, where their sixth starter's most negative projection is an ERA of 4.50.

Not only do I think that the Red Sox will start Buchholz in the minors, but barring a long-term injury to a starter, I think the Red Sox will give Buchholz time off in the season. That way they can use him as a starter in September and October.

On the other hand, I'm not sure what the Yankees are going to do with their young starters. Hughes and Chamberlain are both likely to reach what would be normal innings limits for prospects some time in September. What will they do then? Will the Yankees not use their two best pitching prospects at the most important time of the season, or will they opt to risk injuring their pitchers, and possibly see their production fall as well as they tire? They're putting themselves in a very tough position by counting on these pitchers for full seasons. They aren't capable of pitching full seasons, and he's making it very difficult to give them time off to manage their innings.

For all the talk of how much the Yankees value their prospects, they sure haven't treated them as such. They said they were going to let Hughes develop in Triple-A, then they got desperate and rushed him. Chamberlain had all of 40 AA innings and all of 8 AAA innings. Kennedy had all of 48.2 AA innings and all of 34.2 AAA innings. If any of these pitchers manage to adjust smoothly to the majors, they'll be doing so despite the treatment of the Yankees. A lot of Yankees fans talk about how great Cashman has been at drafting these guys, but I've yet to see or hear one mention how poorly he's managed their use.

Michael said...

your obsession with the yankees has grown tiresome for me...

Royal Rooters said...

Michael, that's a little ironic coming from a Yankees fan who's the most frequent commenter here. Just sayin...

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