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2020 Astros Minor League Thread

Discussion in 'Houston Astros' started by tellitlikeitis, Dec 15, 2019.

  1. prospecthugger

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    Yeah, I couldn't figure out much rhyme or reason to the QC roster. It looks like Gusto's promotion was a reaction to Flaer Gonzalez taking a spot on the GCL roster after missing the 2019 season, and Jervic Chavez moving from the GCL to the NYPL. I would think it's encouraging that Gusto specifically got moved up, but I'm not sure it means anything. Gonzalez was signed on the same day for the same bonus as Luis Garcia and Vallente Bellozo, so that's something I guess.
     
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  2. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    Great catch. It looks like then that the QC and Fayetteville roster moves were just to accommodate the 35 man limit in the short season rosters; I’m assuming there is a rule that at some point all players in the Org must be on a roster.

    So basically all the rosters are bunk and the only meaning that can be drawn from them is which players were protected from or exposed to the minor league phase of the Rule 5 draft.
     
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  3. prospecthugger

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    I feel much more confident in determining that a player was protected than determining that they're exposed. The AAA roster only holds 35, while teams can protect 38 players from the minor league portion and a number of memebers of the AAA squad are already on the 40 man roster, so wouldn't need to be protected again. It doesn't look great for Valdez and McKee since they got moved off the roster and are eligible, but players like Ferrell or Donato who were eligble and stayed on the AA roster might have been protected. There's also a bunch of low level minor league players from other teams that got moved up to Texas league teams right around that same time, so I assume that some of the AA roster is protected.
     
  4. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    https://www.houstonchronicle.com/te...wants-to-make-Astros-farm-system-15252439.php

    Not a ton of substance, but Click does make a point about having players who might not have received a big bonus but who otherwise have talent. To me it begged the question: would anyone be willing to trade Jose Urquidy, Bryan Abreu, and Taylor Jones for Corbin Martin, JB Bukauskas, and Seth Beer? The point of the hypothetical is to illustrate that those 3 prospects still in Houston’s system were all small-bonus unheralded signees, but have (at least arguably) equal value to the 3 high round picks Houston gave up to acquire Zack Greinke.

    If a farm’s Top 30 is a 5 year rolling group of players acquired via the draft and international signings, each Org’s Top 30 would include 5 prospects drafted in each of the top 5 rounds of the Rule 4 draft, plus 5 international signees who were ranked among the Overall Top 30 in their J2 class. Obviously as prospects develop they will slide up, down, in, and out of those rankings, but generally I believe that holds true. If that is the case, then Houston really only lacks 3 first round picks from that strata:

    1st rd picks (2): Whitley, Lee
    Int’l Top 30 (5): M Sierra, C Perez, Lorenzo, Nova, Leon (expected to sign 7/2)
    2nd rd picks (6): Dawson, Matijevic, Schroeder, J Perez, Kessinger, Taylor
    3rd rd picks (5): Emanuel, R Ferrell, Ivey, Brewer, Pena
    4th rd picks (4): Barber, McKenna, Adcock, Solomon
    5th rd picks (4): Toro, Brown, Deason, Perry
     
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  5. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    Looks like the draft will be 5 rounds, with $20k max on undrafted signees.

    With <200 kids getting drafted there will be a lot of undrafted talent (seniors who aren’t good enough for the top 5 rounds, underclassmen who have no interest in school at any price); teams that do the work well will be big winners in this draft. That combined with the inevitable strengthening of the 2022 draft is a small positive for Houston.
     
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  6. rocks_fan

    rocks_fan Rookie

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    Yeah, but we're also going to be without 40% of this year's draft picks, thereby missing out on the top-most tier of talent. I hope the scouting department is on their game, they're going to have to make up for a big loss. I guess the "glass half full" way of looking at it is that there's going to be a lot of talent available to go after.
     
  7. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    I think they will still have the comp pick in the 2nd rd. But if you have to lose a 1st and a 2nd rd pick, the year to do it is when there is way less data on the prospects and the draft is shortened forcing a lot of the best talent to delay entrance.
     
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  8. rocks_fan

    rocks_fan Rookie

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    Yeah, I think they still have the comp pick so there's that. I agree the prospects have one year less of data for clubs to look at, but scouting departments still have years of data at hand for the major prospects. It's the late development guys this is going to hurt the most. That's going to lead to a bigger crapshoot than normal on the UDFA market. Also, while yes I imagine most prospects will have that extra year, that's going to lead to a smaller pool of so called "can't miss" prospects.

    I guess there's two ways this could go. It'll be interesting to see which way it will go. I just think missing two picks out of 5 (or 7 if you count the comp rounds) is going to hurt more than missing two out of 40 (or 42).
     
  9. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    Updated Astros mock draft Id like:

    2: 3B Gage Workman, ASU
    3: IF Zavier Warren, CMU
    4: 2B Trei Cruz, Rice
    5: C Kale Emshoff, Ark LR
     
  10. J.R.

    J.R. Contributing Member

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    Domestic amateurs often are a bargaining chip for Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association, so why should this time have been any different?

    A bigger negotiation is expected next week, a negotiation in which the league is almost certain to ask major leaguers to accept further salary reductions by citing the need, at least initially, to play without paying customers because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The decision by the league to reduce this year’s amateur draft from its customary 40 rounds to five has the look of a warning shot — or, to put it in gentler terms, a clear statement by the owners that they believe their financial position is bleaker than the union and many fans probably think.

    In the meantime, a sport that loves to promote its “Play Ball” program for youth will draft 150 players instead of the usual 1,200 and limit the bonuses for passed-over players to $20,000 plus the cost of a potential college scholarship. In the words of agent Scott Boras, “We probably should have bought a billboard that said, ‘Go play other sports after Little League. Goodbye.’”

    Baseball will survive, but farm systems will be thinner, compromising organizational depth once minor-league baseball resumes, probably next year. The league does not expect to permanently lose talented young players who would have turned professional this year; high school players will go to college, and college juniors can return to school and enter next year’s draft, which will be at least 20 rounds. But forgive all the baseball people who consider the message both deflating and self-defeating.

    The league argues, not unreasonably, that these are extraordinary times. A $10.7 billion industry is shut down. Commissioner Rob Manfred and the rest of the league’s senior staff accepted 35 percent pay reductions. Most teams have yet to guarantee their employees will be paid beyond May 31, and some already have implemented furloughs and pay cuts.

    The draft represents another potential area of savings. Some teams believe money set aside for amateurs who are at best years away from the majors should go toward saving the jobs of existing employees. The counterargument: The draft is the most cost-efficient way of finding talent, and the minimal savings will not justify the potential sacrifice to the game’s future.

    The league initially considered not holding a draft at all, then combining the classes of 2020 and ’21 next year. The March agreement between the owners and players established a minimum of five rounds and kept signing bonus values the same for 2020 as they were in 2019. Those bonuses, however, will be heavily deferred. Teams will pay drafted players a maximum of $100,000 this year, with 50 percent of the remainder coming on July 1, 2021 and the other 50 percent on July 1, 2022.

    The union does not technically represent amateurs; the draft is collectively bargained because draft-pick compensation is attached to free agency. Agreeing to adjusted rules in March helped the union secure concessions for major leaguers on service time and a $170 million guarantee even if the season is canceled (money that otherwise will be used as an advance if play begins). The league followed with a proposal for a 10-round draft that would have reduced signing bonus values by half in rounds 6-10. The union said no.

    Going from half-bonuses to full bonuses in rounds 6-10 would have cost each club a maximum of roughly $500,000, or less than the average salary of a major leaguer. Even at the full price of approximately $1 million per team, Boras says, “If you get one major leaguer out of those five players, you more than make up for the cost.”

    The union likely would have accepted similar restrictions for the 2020 payouts as it did in rounds 1-5. But by refusing to accept the league’s offer – or negotiate off it – the union effectively denied 150 players the opportunity to be drafted and turned down a potential $15 million in bonuses for those players. The picks in rounds 6-10 would have been under no obligation to sign; they could have declined if they did not like the bonuses they were offered.

    Many who represent major leaguers, though, believed they had reason to push back, particularly when they already had made concessions in the draft. They did not want to set the precedent of altering the March deal, knowing the league will likely seek a similar opening next week and ask for additional sacrifices. They also anticipated that the league might simply accede to the wishes of club officials who wanted a draft of longer than five rounds.

    But, no, the league was not going to budge, either. So now, both sides must deal with the consequences of their negotiating postures. It is impossible to know whether players who have worked their whole lives for this moment now might pursue another athletic path or find their baseball career permanently altered in other ways. Perhaps the number of players affected will be negligible, as the league seems to believe.

    Still, for all the front-office emphasis on efficiency, the draft often produces unexpected outcomes, with teams over- and under-valuing players every year. The list of players who became stars after getting picked in the sixth round or later is not insignificant, and many others from those rounds are major-league contributors as well. According to Sportradar, of the 1,410 players who played at least one major-league game in 2019, 1,046 entered the league through the draft and 483 of those — 46 percent — were taken in the sixth round or later.

    One thing seems certain: Few quality players will sign for $20,000. They’ll prefer to remain amateurs and enter a later draft or pursue another career option. A high-revenue team conceivably might stock up on such players — 50 would cost $1 million — but to what end? Teams also might be unlikely to skirt the rules with under-the-table payments or other illegal inducements to undrafted players. If those players are willing to sign for such a small amount, they probably were not worth the risk of getting caught breaking the rules.

    Again, it’s the message that is confusing — or disturbing, depending upon your perspective. The owners promote MLB as the highest level of baseball, yet they are willing to dramatically cut back on the draft, if only for one year, when they already are losing top athletes to other sports.

    Reducing the draft to five rounds makes one thing clear: The owners will spend only what they believe is necessary, even if it means playing hardball with the union.

    With the national economy reeling, it would behoove both sides to quietly partner for the betterment of their sport. But the bigger fight, the one over major-league salaries, is on deck.
     
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  11. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    I do think a shorter draft is really bad for the sport. Drafted players have a lifetime connection to the sport/league. That pays dividends far beyond whatever the prospect contributes as an mlb player. Even if they reduced the number of minor league teams (which makes sense, assuming those franchises couldn’t sustain themselves financially), they could have guys drafted after the 20th round or so simply stick in the complex for an extended tryout then get cut if they didn’t make an impression. There would be very little cost to the teams, and surely those players would prefer that to never having been drafted at all.
     
  12. awc713

    awc713 Member
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    This Luke Little fellow out of San Jac is going to be the steal of the draft. Huge LHP. Get him in an Astros uni, Click!

     
  13. No Worries

    No Worries Contributing Member

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    I see a huge positive.

    The undrafted kids will get to decide where they go. The undrafted players are going to sign for the same money, so there will be no bidding war.

    The Astros are good at player development, which should be a strong selling point for the Astros. The 5-10 round talent in this draft will likely go where they are the best fit. Instead of only getting 5 players from the 5-10 talent pool, a team like the Astros could sign 10-15.

    For example, all of the high spin pitchers who are not drafted in rounds 1-5 will certainly be on the phone with the Astros.
     
  14. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    My only worry is that agents, coaches, and trainers will play a bigger role for undrafted talent. I am not sure how Click factors in but under Luhnow I don’t think most agents and coaches thought very highly of the Astros; however folks like driveline I think would steer their prospects to advanced orgs like Houston.
     
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  15. awc713

    awc713 Member
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  16. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    My hope is that Click is more hesitant to release guys because he hasn’t had as much time to evaluate them, but that may be wishful thinking. Could easily be 40+ guys released from Houstons farm.
     
  17. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    Per Jayne Hansen/Instagram, Brett Adcock and Justin Ferrell were released. Adcock (4th round) is the highest Astros draftee from 2016 to be released so far.
     
  18. awc713

    awc713 Member
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    Very interesting read. Wouldn’t mind scooping up some minor leaguers! Maybe we can find some diamonds in the rough.

     
  19. Snake Diggit

    Snake Diggit Member

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    Draft in 12 days, current mock wishlist:

    71: SS Alika Williams, AZ St.; IF Hayden Cantrelle, ULALa; 3B Gage Workman, AZ St.
    101: RHP Jack Leftwich, UF; LHP Sam Weatherly, Clemson; OF Joey Wiemer, Cincinnati
    131: RHP Gavin Williams, ECU; RHP Jeff Criswell, UM; C Michael Rothenberg, Duke
    160: C Brady Smith, UF; UT Jacob Young, UF; IF Zavier Warren, WMU
     
  20. J.R.

    J.R. Contributing Member

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