Baseball America's Jim Callis held a prospect chat on Wednesday, and here are some excerpts.
Mary (Harrisburg, PA): Harper hasn't exactly dominated here as of yet. Are you confident he'll adapt?
Jim Callis: Harper is still well ahead of schedule as an 18-year-old in Double-A. Shoot, he could stay there for the next two years and still be ahead of schedule. I'm not worried. Making the jump from low A to Double-A is difficult for anyone. He's still going to be a superstar. Wouldn't surprise me at all if he's in Washington's lineup in less than a year.
That is my assumption as well. I think Harper will be up in Washington by June 2012. In AA thus far, he is hitting just .171-.256-.171 with 2 runs, 2 RBIs and a SB in 11 games. He will come around.
Shane (Miami): Another week and more mashing by Jurickson Profar. Have scouts given you any comps for this guy, or what kind of ceiling are we looking at for him?
Jim Callis: I haven't heard a good comp and I won't force one. But I will say the list of five-tool shortstops in the minors begins and ends with Manny Machado and Profar.
Profar is hitting .282-.386-.523 with 10 HRs, 46 RBIs, 56 runs and 12 SBs in 76 games in Low A as an 18 year old. Wow. He is also walking more than he is striking out. Sounds like it is time for him to be moved up.
More BA chat excerpts after the jump:
Chris (Richmond): Castellanos. Are you buying or selling? he seems to have really turned a corner.
Jim Callis: Been buying ever since I saw him at the Under Armour Game two years ago. He has been hitting well, especially considering his home ballpark and league. One of the best third-base prospects in the entire minors.
Castellanos is hitting .297-.336-.437 with 6 HRs, 55 RBIs and 41 runs in 91 games in Low A this season. Could he be trade bait for a starting pitcher.at the trade deadline?
Bevan (SLC): Jim, Yonder Alonso/Yasmani Grandal/B prospect for James Shields. The Rays promote Moore to take Shields spot, and get a very good (and inexpensive) 1B & C of the future. Who says no to this deal?
Jim Callis: That type of trade would make a lot of sense for both clubs. Maybe with Todd Frazier as the third prospect? Would the Reds give up Billy Hamilton? That said, premium starters are so hard to find, that the Rays would be more likely to say no. They might want a better prospect to headline the deal. It would be hard to deal Shields and not get someone who'd make an immediate impact in Tampa Bay.
I think this proposed deal makes a lot of sense for both teams. Alonso can't stay in AAA forever, and he is as close to being major league ready as any prospect out there. Grandal could move fast as well if he can improve the apparent receiving problems.
Rick (NY): Thoughts on Ryan Lavarnway's future in the bigs?
Jim Callis: Still not sure he'll be more than an adequate defender behind the plate, and he'll have to work to stay in tip-top shape so he can do that, but he's doing it. He's hitting so well that at some point soon the Red Sox will have to see what he can do. Gut feel is he's more of a backup C/1B/DH type than an everyday C.
Lavarnway is hitting .376-.447-.736 with 11 HRs, 31 RBIs and 25 runs in 33 AAA games this season. Wow. He hit well in AA as well-.284-.360-.510 with 14 HRs, 38 RBIs and 35 runs in 55 games.