Prospecting

SniderTORONTO – Just killing some time until I head out tonight to the Jays’ annual Reverse Draw charity event, where Vernon Wells, Jeremy Accardo and Dustin McGowan will be making an appearance (though the crowd may be paying more attention to the magicians and showgirls expected to be in attendance, according to the press release that went out).

Anyway, I stumbled upon some top prospect lists just now and figured I’d relay where some of the Jays up-and-comers fall. The constant on all the lists I’ve seen, and this comes as no surprise, is Travis Snider (pictured right with Class A Lansing).

Baseball Prospectus has Snider ranked No. 7 on a list of their Top 100 prospects. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he’s the only Blue Jays rep on the list. Meanwhile, the Yankees and Red Sox have five and seven players on the list, respectively. On Keith Law’s Top 100 list on ESPN.com, Snider also ranks seventh and left-hander Brett Cecil ranks 63rd.

On MLB.com’s top 50 prospects list, Snider drops to 15th overall and is the only Toronto farmhand on the list. In the Sporting News fantasy preview mag I have in hand at the moment, Snider is 37th on a list of 50 prospects who could have an impact in 2008. In the mag’s Top 10 such prospects for ’09, Snider ranks fifth.

Snider will be in Dunedin with the big leaguers this spring as a non-roster invitee. If he keeps progressing as he has since being drafted, Snider could be a September callup this year. Coming up earlier than that could happen, but is unlikely. In ’09, Snider will probably make a push for a job with the Jays at some point. Maybe a left-field platoon of Adam Lind and Snider will be used at some point in ’09. Time will tell how soon Snider forced Toronto’s hand.

11 Comments

JP receives criticism on this in Rob Neyers blog as well. 7 years in for JP and 1 guy in the top 100. Sounds grim. Does anyone know what that list looked like Before JP got there? I did a quick search on Baseball Prospectus and didn’t find a list for 2000.

Janssen, Hill, Lind, Marcum and Litsch are all J.p.’s and in the majors. That’s not bad in my opinion but it’s definitaly not spectacular either. You can make the arguement that isn’t good enough from a guy that claimed that he can compete with a $50 million payroll. Personally though, as long as the team has a great season this year i’ll forgive the guy. If they don’t though his time in my mind should be up.

you know what, considering where this team was when JP came to Toronto, he has done one **** of a job. i find that the rumblings to “fire JP” are completely misguided and have no support whatsoever. Critics should keep in mind that the Jays compete in the richest division in baseball. the fact that JP decided to come here says alot about him and the fact that he turned down a offer to be the Red Sox GM says even more. do people actually think there is a guy who could do a better job than JP? newsflash: there isn’t. If the scouting staff isn’t seeing the prospects, thats their problem, maybe the scouting staff is seeing the prospects, and the minor league affiliates are developing them. anybody who wants to argue that please try, Johan Santana was a rule 5 choice for Minnesota, David Ortiz the Same for Boston. These guys weren’t cant-miss prospects.

Justin, what about this winter, when JP let both Lee Gronkiewicz and josh towers go without us recieving anything, when he had trade offers for both of them?? Don’t get me wrong, JP did a great job in the latter part of the winter, but some of those trades, ie Scott Rolen and David Eckstein, just fell into his lap. I think Ricciardi is not a great GM but he does the job as well as anyone trained by Billy Bean would be able to do.
But, to blame Ricciardi for bad draft choices is unfair. That also reflects the work of the scouting and coaching, with the mindset of the athlete being a wild card in any case. Riccardi only plays a part. Maybe Uncle Teddy should look at the entire scouting wing. Or maybe JP just is getting unlucky in recent years. I dunno.

Cheers

sorry, i must have missed something somewhere…what was the trade we could have had with Josh Towers?

Or, for that matter, who was offering anything for Gronk?

We were offered a midlevel prospect for Towers, but youre right, Gronk had no offer. My mind is warped by the talk that we probably COULD have gotten somethign for him.

Who made an offer for Towers? I know there are people who don’t think JP is that bright. But really, even if he knew he was going to non-tender Towers, do you not think he would take ANYTHING for him? I’m sure JP would have taken a new ball bag in exchange for Towers. Doesn’t make sence to me.

So where did Adam Lind place in the prospect rankings ???

Are the Jays ever going to do anything with Lind ?

Seems like other teams could use either him or Reed Johnson.

I think Jordan will back me up, because this subject was discussed before. There was no serious offer for Towers, or the Jays would have pulled the trigger. As for Gronkiewicz, you can only protect so many players in the Rule 5 draft. We lost Gronkiewicz, we picked up Wells. Much as I liked Lee, he probably didn’t have a future with the Jays anyway. Their pitching staff would be a pretty hard nut to crack right now.

GNORMAN, I’ll back you on the Towers comment with a mailbag item I ran on Jan. 21:

When Josh Towers was released in December, there were reports that the San Diego Padres showed interest in him during the Winter Meetings. If so, why would the Jays release him and receive nothing, when they could have traded him to San Diego for at least a low-level prospect?

– Michael B., Elmira, Ontario

If the Jays were approached with any trade proposals for Towers, you can bet they considered dealing him. By not tending a 2008 contract to Towers, who was eligible for arbitration, it should be evident that any offers the Jays did receive weren’t convincing enough to pull the trigger.

San Diego’s interest must have been limited anyway, considering Towers appears set to sign with the Rockies for a base salary of $1.8 million. It’s not as if the Jays didn’t net any kind of return by releasing Towers, either. The move saved Toronto around $3 million, which the club then used to help sign free-agent shortstop David Eckstein.

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