Prospect Chat: Jason Parks on Kyle Drabek, Starling Marte, and Jesus Montero

Jason Parks held a chat on Wednesday over at Baseball Prospectus, and here's some excerpts from that:

Bored Security Guard (Dallas (not by the Lobby Pool)): Will Kyle Drabek recapture his former ability and contribute in 2012, or a later date? Skills still there?

Jason Parks: I'm not really sure. I think the stuff is still there. If he can find some consistency with his mechanics and his head, I think he can contribute at the major league level. He's a competitor, so let's see how he responds to failure.

Hopefully he'll be able to rebound somewhat, but last year's numbers were unbelievably brutal (55 walks in 78 MLB innings), so it definitely remains to be seen.

Seth (PA): In your opinion would you package Starling Marte for a young 1B since it has been such a black hole for the bucs? What kind of player do you think Marte will become?

Jason Parks: I wouldn't trade Marte for a 1B unless that 1B could hit in the middle of a lineup. I'm very high on Marte. Could end up being a first-division player, although some believe that is optimistic. He's an up-the-middle regular at worst and that has a lot of value.

Marte's name keeps coming up as another young outfielder on his way to Pittsburgh, and it may make some sense for the team to explore moving one or two of them for other needs. That said, OF prospects who are likely to stay in center don't grow on trees, so moving him would have to be for a proven talent of some sort.

Spirou (Montreal): Your thoughts on Zach Wheeler ? Having watched a lot of footage,I for myself believe his ceiling is as high as some the higher ranked pitching prospects in the game.

Jason Parks: He has an electric arm, but he needs to harness that electricity and encourage more feel. I think his ceiling is very high, and I really like the arsenal. It will take time to refine his command and he could stumble a bit in the process.

The Mets did well to acquire Wheeler in exchange for Carlos Beltran, and Wheeler seems likely to start the 2012 season in AA for the organization.

Kelvin (Oak Park): How high are the ceilings of Gerrit Cole and Drew Pomeranz?

Jason Parks: Cole could be a #1 and I rarely feel comfortable putting that distinction on a player. I see Pomeranz as a potential 2/3 type

Pomeranz will likely rank higher on my RHP prospect list for 2012, as he seems to have at least a decent shot of making the team out of spring training. Cole is the better one long-term though.

yankeesbg13 (Indianapolis): Everybody has been hearing all of this hype about Yu Darvish. Daisuke Matsuzaka got all this hype too, and look what happened to him. Do you think Yu will be the real deal?

Jason Parks: I think Matsuzaka was the real deal as well. He just couldn't maintain it. I think people forget that he had a couple good seasons. Was he everything that was advertised? No. Will Darvish be the real deal? I think he has a more realistic chance of sustainable success. A see a very good #2 starter.

Darvish has posted better numbers in NPB than Matsuzaka did when he was there, and is still younger as well. I agree with Jason that people tend to forget that Matsuzaka did have a couple of good seasons. The problem remains that the drop-off was so far and so fast that it's hard to remember that sometimes.

Anello (Chicago): In your opinion, do you think Jacob Turner is the real deal, or Rick Porcello 2.0?

Jason Parks: Rick Porcello 2.0 isn't exactly a bad thing, but I get the point. I think Turner's the real deal.

Porcello 2.0 seems like no value for fantasy owners, but there is still upside. I think Turner will start 2012 in AAA, and could see a callup at some point during the season.

David (Tigard): Hi. Assuming he stays with the Yankees next year, what mix of playing time do you see Jesus Montero getting this year? In other words, how many games does he play at DH vs. catcher vs. other positions? Also, Cashman keeps talking him up as a viable catcher. Do you see this as solely an attempt to boost trade value or is he just saying nice things about his player? Surely he can't be serious, based on what I saw last year.

Jason Parks: I don't see Montero as a catcher, but I know some very smart people who think its possible (at least). The kid can really hit and he needs to be playing at the major league level in some capacity. Either play him or trade him. Long term, he's a DH.

The consensus seems to remain that Montero needs to be playing, and that if they can make him work as a catcher, better for everyone involved. It remains to be seen whether or not that can be done though. I think he'll end up with catcher eligibility for this year, and probably end up as a DH only for next year unless he is traded.

Sanchez101 (Santa Barbara, CA): Forget the catching aspect - what's Montero projection and ceiling as a hitter (all we ever hear is 'not a catcher but can really hit') I need more specifics? Can he have a Prince Fielder-type production? Is that a bad comparison? Who is?

Jason Parks: I don't think he will offer Prince Fielder-like production, but not many hitters can boast to that level of force. Montero has a chance to hit for average and power, something like a .300 hitter who can jack 30 bombs. That's a fantastic hitter.

.300 with 30 homers!?!?! There weren't that many players who did that last year (10 by my count, plus 2 who hit .299 and 2 who hit 29 homers). If he could actually stay at C, he could be a top 25 pick in my opinion.

Mike (Dover): More likely to occur: Matt Moore fans 250 over a season (any point in his MLB career), or Bryce Harper hitting 50 HR over a season in the same time frame. Both going to happen?

Jason Parks: Both could happen. That's scary, isn't it?

Not what I wanted to hear. One owner in one of my long-time dynasty leagues owns both of them, Mike Trout, and Stephen Strasburg. Scary thought for all of us owners.

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