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Old 08-11-2014, 12:45 PM   #26 (permalink)
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To me this is between a few players but not necessarily a first rounder. Daniel Norris was SUPPOSED to be an impact-type arm when he was drafted. He's made some nice adjustments but has he really improved over what they thought he'd be at this point? Tapia gets my vote as he was a low-level international FA who truly broke out. He was a risky signing who's now showing more than they thought when the Rockies spent a modest amount on him in the International Free Agent Market.
Not really, Tapia was supposed to be good. Bleachers had him #5 behind Gray, Butler, Dahl and herrera and ahead of McMahon who they had #6. Even the roto guys had him ranked #84 way back in january...notice right around the rankings of DJ Peterson, Betts, Berrios, Swihart, etc. He was expected to be good.

2014′s Top 125 Prospects | Roto Analysis

Colorado Rockies' Top 10 Prospects for 2014 | Bleacher Report
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:45 PM   #27 (permalink)
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I gotta plug my guy Trevor Story. Had a rough go his first time in high A Modesto slashing .233/.305/.394 with a .700 OPS. He repeated the level this year and hit .332/.436/.582 with a 1.017 OPS to earn himself a second half promotion to AA Tulsa.
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:03 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Not really, Tapia was supposed to be good. Bleachers had him #5 behind Gray, Butler, Dahl and herrera and ahead of McMahon who they had #6. Even the roto guys had him ranked #84 way back in january...notice right around the rankings of DJ Peterson, Betts, Berrios, Swihart, etc. He was expected to be good.

2014′s Top 125 Prospects | Roto Analysis

Colorado Rockies' Top 10 Prospects for 2014 | Bleacher Report
Tapia was signed for a modest amount and ranked about 20th on the FA list that season. He wasn't supposed to be this good. I believe his signing bonus was under 200K compared to the millions Cardona or Nunez received that season.
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:10 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Tapia was signed for a modest amount and ranked about 20th on the FA list that season. He wasn't supposed to be this good. I believe his signing bonus was under 200K compared to the millions Cardona or Nunez received that season.
Yes he's been a find for them and one of the best international signings from 2010 but everyone predicted a good season from him before this year so it's not a shock to see him performing. Lets see him in AA before getting excited. His road stats aren't nearly as impressive as his home stats. McMahons are more balanced and thus to me still a better prospect (i've seen them 3-4 times this year).
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:20 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Yes he's been a find for them and one of the best international signings from 2010 but everyone predicted a good season from him before this year so it's not a shock to see him performing. Lets see him in AA before getting excited. His road stats aren't nearly as impressive as his home stats. McMahons are more balanced and thus to me still a better prospect (i've seen them 3-4 times this year).
I understand where you're coming from, and I agree I need more pro data on Tapia. But the question was about most improved. My overriding thought is that one can't say a first-round larger-bonus guy like Daniel Norris is the most improved when there are players like Tapia out there who were very risky propositions in retrospect who worked out better than expected.

There may be others like Tapia to consider, but taking a former-first-rounder as the answer to this question isn't accurate in my opinion. (This is not pointed at you specifically).

Frankly, I wouldn't put Clint Coulter near this question either. He's improved....yes. But we expected him to hit like this.
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:48 PM   #31 (permalink)
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A few to consider in no particular order:

Mookie Betts - guy rocketed up the top 100 this year with his on base streak and consistent domination of Minor League pitching. Easily belongs on the list of Most Improved.

Jorge Soler - Maybe not most improved as a player, but certainly has improved his stock as much as anyone. He was the best hitter in the Minors for the month of July. Better than Bryant, better than everyone. Only a matter of time before his card prices take another big jump. I see Soler as a .285/30HR/100 RBI guy when he settles into the Majors, and when you take into consideration that he'll have the chance to hit in the same lineup as Baez/Castro/Bryant/Rizzo/etc., his overall offensive line could make him an all star very quickly.

Josh Hader - This guy has had a crazy season, maintaining a very impressive line as a pitcher in the Cal League and it seems like no one is talking about him. He's only a few months older than Hunter Harvey and was playing in a level higher, and he put up better numbers than Harvey. Harvey gets the edge with overall upside, but Hader has been tough. Only knock is that HOU has used him as a reliever, although it seems that's simply how they get all their starters the innings they need and he will be a starter long term.

Arismendy Alcantara - Another Cub who has always been good but truly broke out this season, earning him a spot on the Big League Club. He could end up being a Curtis Granderson type, who fields his position well and fills the stat sheet with 30+ doubles, 15+ triples, and 20+ homers. What's crazy is that he may actually be stuck hitting in the bottom part of the lineup due to all the upcoming talent the Cubbies have on the way.

Jon Singleton - Substantial improvement from last year's disappointing season...power is legit and only question now is whether he can keep the Ks under control at the Major League level enough to be an impact bat long term. At worst, he's still going to hit 25+ homers each year although in a Sammy Sosa/Adam Dunn way....striking out a lot and sacrificing average for power. At best, he's a .270ish hitter who will take his share of walks and has the potential to hit 40 homers during his peak years.

Tyler Glasnow - It's not a surprise what he's doing this year, but he has gone from very good last year to pure dominance this year. It's hard to imagine a top 25 without Glasnow. This is what people want in a pitcher...a guy who is going to dominate and strikeout double digit batters in a big chunk of his starts.

Michael Lorenzen - Another guy no one seems to be talking about despite a phenomenal first full pro season. What people overlook is that he's also converting to be a starting pitcher for the first time. He has been very impressive and should only continue to look more and more dominant as he refines his secondary pitches. Why I can still get his big color autos for cheap is beyond me, but I'm not complaining. Lorenzen is going to be a good one.
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:53 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Hader is a good one. Singleton I never liked.
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:12 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Josh Bell....
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:20 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Tyler Austin for me. Went from a top Yankee prospect to a guy who had a bad wrist and couldn't hit for power or average. Started out hitting .205 this year through May.

In the last 2 months, he's hitting .360 with some power and might just find his way to NYY in September. Still only 22, hope he can make a dent as a Yankee.
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:32 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Gotta Give Lewis Brinson a look
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:38 PM   #36 (permalink)
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There are a lot of good names already listed.

Blake Swihart took huge steps forward this year in terms of power.
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:14 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Tyler Austin for me. Went from a top Yankee prospect to a guy who had a bad wrist and couldn't hit for power or average. Started out hitting .205 this year through May.

In the last 2 months, he's hitting .360 with some power and might just find his way to NYY in September. Still only 22, hope he can make a dent as a Yankee.
he definitely picked it up but man he has been disappointing for this yankee fan since his 2012 breakout yr which saw him jump like 3 levels.

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Gotta Give Lewis Brinson a look
thats a good one

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There are a lot of good names already listed.

Blake Swihart took huge steps forward this year in terms of power.
him too, i think he's the top ranked catcher now, right? or is hedges still higher?
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:23 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Tapia has some pretty suspicious home/road splits. Plays his home games at high elevation Asheville. Of course, next year he'll be in the Cal League, so he'll keep having inflated power numbers.

54g 363/399/547 HOME 8HR
51g 300/374/375 AWAY 0HR
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:28 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Yes he's been a find for them and one of the best international signings from 2010 but everyone predicted a good season from him before this year so it's not a shock to see him performing. Lets see him in AA before getting excited. His road stats aren't nearly as impressive as his home stats. McMahons are more balanced and thus to me still a better prospect (i've seen them 3-4 times this year).
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Tapia has some pretty suspicious home/road splits. Plays his home games at high elevation Asheville. Of course, next year he'll be in the Cal League, so he'll keep having inflated power numbers.

54g 363/399/547 HOME 8HR
51g 300/374/375 AWAY 0HR
That's exactly what I was saying and why we will have to wait till AA to really see what kind of player he is. McMahon's SLG% is actually higher on the road than at home which is complete opposite of Tapia and why i like McMahon better.
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:54 PM   #40 (permalink)
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That's exactly what I was saying and why we will have to wait till AA to really see what kind of player he is. McMahon's SLG% is actually higher on the road than at home which is complete opposite of Tapia and why i like McMahon better.
no we won't, we can just buy this off season and sell next year
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:16 PM   #41 (permalink)
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no we won't, we can just buy this off season and sell next year
No kidding. High contact guy in the Cal League is like a perfect recipe for a spike in HR numbers.
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:57 PM   #42 (permalink)
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no we won't, we can just buy this off season and sell next year
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No kidding. High contact guy in the Cal League is like a perfect recipe for a spike in HR numbers.
I agree you can still make alot of money on Tapia but I'm not sure he's as good as the numbers say right now.
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:06 PM   #43 (permalink)
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Has to be Daniel Norris.
THISSSSSSS

2012 - 8.44 ERA
2013 - 4.20 ERA in Low A
2014 - 2.25 - 136 K's to 35 BB's. Started in High A and promoted twice

If anyone says they saw this coming after the horrendous 2012 season, well, I don't believe you

***My second pick would be Jorge Soler. Dude is straight up BEASTING
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:12 PM   #44 (permalink)
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Essentially this could be looked at as a "who has moved up the prospect lists the most" kind of thread, right?

If so, here are a few that stick out to me:

Mookie Betts-went from solid prospect to top end prospect all in less than 1 year

Daniel Norris-really struggled until this year, when everything started to come together. Not surprisingly, he is rocketing up prospect lists, and justifiably so

Josh Bell-Went from someone who was borderline top 100 to top 50 almost everywhere. He's got a very good hit tool, and if the power starts to show up in games, watch out. He could have a similar track as Gregory Polanco.

Joey Gallo-Went from top 50-100 guy, to a universal top 20 guy, as high as 3 or 4 I believe. The adjustments he made at Hi A are really impressive, considering he was bumped from Low A last year to Hi A this year. Cut down on the K's in a big way, and walks went way up--not to mention the obvious power. Yes, AA has been a challenge, but who didn't expect that? A power prospect like him, one who has struggled with K's, isn't going to breeze through 2-3 levels in a year. I can't imagine the Rangers envisioned him being at AA for half the year, and as I've said in other posts--anything he does in AA is gravy, the performance in Hi A means that his year was/is successful.

There are others, for sure--but those are 4 that come to the top of my mind.
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:23 PM   #45 (permalink)
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Daniel Norris no question. Surprised is autos are still less then 10$
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:35 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Is the correct answer...KRIS BRYANT?
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:37 PM   #47 (permalink)
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Is the correct answer...KRIS BRYANT?
U nailed it!
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