Cutnpaste: – Mookie, Sickles on Flores, Prospect Success, More Flores, and Gino Cimoli

Mookie Wilson:

As a leadoff hitter, he struck out far too often and didn’t take nearly enough walks. But that was what speedy leadoff hitters did in the late 1970s and early 80s (see: Omar Moreno, Mickey Rivers, Al Bumbry, Bake McBride, Lou Brock, et al). It was a different time, so it’s hard for the youngins to understand, but basically it worked like this: you put a guy with disruptive basestealing skill at the top of the lineup, regardless of OBP, because if he gets on base he’ll wreak havoc with the minds of the pitcher and catcher, break their concentration, and induce more fastballs thrown — to the best hitters in the lineup (#3 and #4). The strategy doesn’t make sense now, because MLB talent is diluted and the pitchers stink. But back then, when pitchers dominated, it wasn’t the worst strategy in the world — no matter what Bill James says.  

Sickles on Flores:
see the Mets as having a below average farm system at this point. They have some interesting players certainly, but even their best prospect (Wilmer Flores) has some question-marks and isn’t a certain impact player. He has the natural ability to be one, but there are a lot of questions about what his development path will look like, what position he will play, etc.. He is so young he could develop in any number of ways. The system will look better a year from now if players such as Matt Harvey, Vaughn, Aderlin Rodriguez, or Juan Urbina can live up to their full potential, Harvey in particular. They have a few prospects that would interest other teams, but they are not dealing from depth, and that limits their trade options.  

Prospect Success:

•About 70% of Baseball America top 100 prospects fail. •Position player prospects succeed much more often than pitching prospects. •About 60% of position players ranked in Baseball America’s top 20 succeed in the majors. •About 40% of pitchers ranked in the top 20 succeed in the majors. •About 30% of position players ranked 21-100 succeed in the majors (with the success rate declining over that ranking range from about 36% to about 25%)  

Wilmer Flores:
Flores looked like a star as an 18-year-old at the dish last season, showing great power, a good eye, and a smooth swing. His athleticism makes him a logical shortstop—but given his size—third base, first base or right field seem like the likely destinations for him. He’s definitely quite a-ways off from where he will end up, but right now, things are looking very good for this sweet-swinging teen.  

Gino Cimoli:
When Gino Cimoli stepped in the batter’s box at Seals Stadium on April 15, 1958, major-league baseball was born on the West Coast. Cimoli was a Brooklyn Dodger but a San Franciscan at heart. He was inserted atop the lineup by manager Walter Alston, who knew the significance of the North Beach legend and kid from Galileo High School becoming the first big-league batter following the Giants’ and Dodgers’ relocation from New York. Cimoli died Saturday morning of kidney and heart complications. He was 81  


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