This was originally a response to the "Do the Astros have a mid tier farm system" I kind of went on a rant, and I want people to see it, and mainly spark discussion/debate. Before reading this, know that I'm a mega Astros fan, and I just want what's best for the organization. Also, I realize that the farm system has come back from the dead under Heck and Co. , but as I'm prepared to argue - not nearly enough.
--- Ok, so if Chris Wallace hits at AA like he did in low - A he's a top 100 prospect. I also think Chase Davidson is the real deal, and will move quickly - probably to High A. I could see him being similar to Jonathan Singleton last year. This is based on his power potential and well... just a feeling I guess.
... Springer will definitely be in the top 100, so will Altuve. Villar is still young and has all the tools, so I could see for making a case for him. MIer is interesting and going to Lancaster now, and maybe he finally finds his stroke and his confidence there. DDJr is a pretty big dissapointment so far, but could bust out any day. And finally, Ovando got mentioned by Badler on one of his tweets going 1-4, if Ovando does ANYTHING (like a .250 avg, couple of homers) as a 17 ? year old in the GCL -they will put him in the top 100) Here's hoping he will.
This is best case scenario however. Realistically, Springer will make the top 100. Um... that's it.
Desmond Jennings (10th rd), Dominick Brown (20th), Wil Myers (3rd), Brandon Belt (5th), Matt Moore (8th), Jon Singleton (8th), John Lamb (5th), Dee Gordon (4th), Chris Archer (5th), Jarred Cosart (38th), Dellin Betances (8th), Anthony Rizzo (7th) - These are guys in the top 50, the poster above me posted.
Like the poster above said - we need to be aggressive as hell in signing these International guys. The Braves, Yankees and Rangers are stacked with these guys, and you know what? We basically started the whole trend. We need to be spending like the Pirates and Yankees down there. We did well last year, but we need to be a top spender down there. This years class is better than last years, and we should expect to see several high profile signings.
Also above, the poster comments we need to be hitting on our mid round selections - I totally agree. It's very concerning that after 3 drafts we have borderline top 100 talents in the system STILL. I have been questioning Bobby Heck and Ed Wade since (well, honestly since we took Castro over Smoak) but mostly since the 09 draft. I understand drafting for depth, but I look at these drafts and one word comes to mind - LACKLUSTER.
We haven't produced guys that are mentioned above. Why? Because we didn't want to spend the $$$ on them? That's a sh***y excuse. I think there's a couple of possibilities.
One, we're still cheap as all hell under Drayton and Tal. Two, our scouts are not very good. Headed by Bobby Heck and Ed Wade, they're reaching for guys who they think might not be there at their next pick? What kind of philosophy is that? Three, We're taking high ceiling guys (sometimes) but we don't have the coaching, or maybe we have some kind of old flawed system that these kids are not responding to. Four<strong></strong>, It's a mix of all these, and that's just unacceptable.
I can get behind taking HS kids. I can get behind taking high ceiling athletes. But when NONE of them have really panned out - like BA even said, there's something wrong. Other than Lyles last year, Villar was our only other top 100 - AND HE WASN"T EVEN DRAFTED BY US. Let that sink in. That sucks.
I KNOW our minor league coaching has something to do with this, but talent shines through. If we would have drafted Betances in the 8th round in 08? 09? I'm pretty sure his talent would be eveident and we would have a top 50 prospect, but we didn't - and I hold Heck and Wade accountable. I guess we have "depth" now, but Dammit man, we could've gotten a few stars in the process.
To be fair, I liked our 11 draft for the most part. There are still reaches, and older mediocre college players -who will probably turn into older mediocre AAAA players, but overall there's much more potential. So this is 4 drafts for Heck and Co. You would think we would be in the middle farm ratings. But... we're probably not going to be. Sooo...
I think along with Wade (which is almost certain) we must show HEck the door too. If this past draft is awesome then that's great, but the rest look pretty bleak. Now, we upgrade. Get someone high up from the Braves, or Red Sox or Rays. They continually have good farms. There's a reason for this - other than the sabermetrician -btw, do we follow or even have one?
Yes, Heck (and Zrudelianak - Mariners GM) produced some heavy hitters in MIlwaukee, but they didn't produce much pitching. Some might say they got lucky on a few picks. I say move on! Don't be afraid to hand Heck his walking papers! There are better head scouts out there, we just have to pay and pry them away.
Finally, I know it takes time to build a farm. Time. Time. Time. That's all we hear. But look above ^^^ Look at the 100 list. 08. 09, 10 draftees on there. Aren't you jealous? I am. Why can other teams have multiple 09 picks on there? There's take time too, don't they? Depth? Nothing changes the fact that we could have picked Mike Trout in 09, and "depth" or not - he would be a superstar. Period. Yes, it takes time, but it's been 4 drafts, three years and we want results, and I mean stars (Altuve was not drafted by Heck or Wade) not "depth". Time's up.