Future Forty Update
It’s a few days early, but the September update of the Future Forty is now available. There’s some shuffling in the top 5, as Jose Lopez passes Clint Nageotte and Travis Blackley. The poor showings in Seattle haven’t helped the confidence of either pitcher, and I’d been contemplating moving both down for a while anyways. Their performances in the big leagues seemed completely out of line with their Triple-A numbers, but park effects could have been skewing our expectations.
Nageotte at home: 31 IP, 16 H, 13 BB, 28 K, 2.03 ERA
Nageotte in all PCL parks besides Cheney Stadium: 49 2/3 IP, 62 H, 22 BB, 35 K, 5.98 ERA
Blackley at home: 51 IP, 35 H, 19 BB, 45 K, 1.59 ERA
Blackley in all PCL parks besides Cheney Stadium: 59 1/3 IP, 65 H, 28 BB, 35 K, 5.76 ERA
Cheney’s a good pitcher’s park, but those are ridiculous splits. Sample size comes into play, and I’m not trying to say that Nageotte and Blackley aren’t good prospects anymore. I do, however, think that their Triple-A performances weren’t as impressive as first appear, and we all believed they were rushed anyways. At this point, neither has conquered the PCL, and both need a good deal more work before they see the majors again.
Also, Bucky Jacobsen and J.J. Putz lost eligibility and have found their way off the Future Forty. Josh Womack and Bryan LaHair played their way off the list. Three new arms appear in the 30-34 range, led by converted catcher Rich Dorman, who is posting eye-popping K numbers but just can’t throw strikes consistently. Newly claimed Brett Evert and non-drafted free agent signee Brandon Moorhead also make their first appearances on the Future Forty. Oswaldo Navarro finishes out the list at #40, coming back to the list after dropping off earlier this year.
You’ll note the brief comment about Mike Morse being suspended. This is one of those cases, like Rett’s “personal issues”, where I don’t feel like it benefits anyone to reveal the details of what happened. It’s a fairly serious issue, and I’ve been asked to keep this one to myself. On stuff like this, I think it’s a reasonable request, and therefore, I’m going to do so.
This will likely be the last appearance on the Future Forty for Lopez and Madritsch, who will see their rookie eligibility expire fairly soon. Removing those two from consideration, the M’s farm system over the offseason is going to rank among the bottom tier, despite King Felix’s presence. There’s a pretty serious lack of impact players througout the system. Thank you, Frank Mattox.
Also, interestingly, despite the sentiment that the system is rich with arms and not so much with bats, the Future Forty is split right down the middle with twenty pitchers and twenty hitters. 14 of the top 22 prospects are hitters. I’d say that sentiment has long past lived out its truthfulness. This is no longer a “pitching rich” system.