Kevin Goldstein completed a chat on Friday over at Baseball Prospectus, and here's some of the more interesting tidbits from it:
jamin67038 (Wichita, KS): Derek Norris' ceiling in the majors? .260/.380/.450?
Kevin Goldstein: I'd take at least 20 points off that batting average and therefore all three.
The newly acquired prospect for the A's, Norris has shown power (.236 ISO) and the ability to draw a walk (77 last year), but somehow managed to hit just .210 while doing so last year. It doesn't appear that he's likely to hit for a particularly good batting average, but his numbers should still play well as a fantasy catcher.
SenatorsGuy (DC): Jean Segura - one year removed from the move to SS - what are the comments on his ability to stick at SS?
Kevin Goldstein: He's one year removed, but he barely played because of the hamstring issues, so we need more data. Early returns were promising however.
Segura was coming off a season in 2010 where he hit 10 home runs and stole 50 bases in the Midwest League, but missed a majority of last season due to the injuries. If he can stick at shortstop AND show that he can return to form when healthy, he could be right behind Machado and Profar as the #3 shortstop prospect in all of baseball.
Steve (California): Trevor Bauer, I've heard ceiling of #1 and floor of #3 (barring some horrible breakdown), you agree? Also do you think there is something behind all the long-toss workouts? Do you think it actually makes a pitcher more durable? How much stock do you put in it?
Kevin Goldstein: I'd go with No. 2 ceiling and No. 4 floor, but some people define those differently. As for the long-tossing, I think it's much ado about nothing. It works for him, and nobody should change what he does, but it's not some revolution.
Bauer was recently rated as the #3 prospect for 2012 by our own Craig Goldstein, and as the #4 prospect for 2012 by me as well. I doubt highly that he won't be pitching in the Majors for the Diamondbacks by the end of the season.
jaymoff (Salem): Where does Trout start the year? I feel that if he isn't playing everyday he should be back in AAA, even if it's unnecessary from a developmental standpoint. Do you agree? Do the Angels?
Kevin Goldstein: Trout is not finished, so playing every day actually IS necessary from a developmental standpoint. I think the Angels agree, and I think they start him at AAA.
Between the logjam that's in the outfield for the Angels and the fact that he did not play in AAA last year, I tend to agree that he will start the season there. If he performs even remotely like he has at every other stop in the minors, he seems likely to force the issue before too long.
Luke (Nawlins): Long term do you pick Teheran, Miller, or Darvish?
Kevin Goldstein: Darvish.
It's hard to argue with the numbers that Darvish posted when in Japan, regardless of whether or not the quality of competition is lower. I had them Darvish, Teheran and Miller when I did my rankings earlier in the winter.
Josh (San Clemente): Josh Byrnes said the other day that they measured Rymer Liriano's ball-off-the-bat speed and it was comparable to guys like Mike Stanton. Obviously he doesn't have 80 power, but can he hit more than 30 HRs or is his power more line-drive oriented?
Kevin Goldstein: Exit velocity is one thing, but not the only thing that sends a ball out. Loft and backspin matter as well. I think Liriano will be an 18-20 HR type.
An 18-20 home run potential WITH speed? This is an outfielder who stole 66 bases last year. While he's not likely to steal more than 40 in a season, the idea that he could be a 20-30 hitter could provide a ton of value to fantasy owners. It remains to be seen what kind of effect playing in Petco could have on him, but the future looks bright.