Tag: MLB500

B/R MLB 500: Top 150 Starting Pitchers

After checking in with the guys behind the plate, the next stop for the B/R MLB 500 is the guys they do business with the most: starting pitchers. 

We have 150 starting pitchers to get to, and they’ll be scored like so: 30 points for Control, 25 points for Whiffability, 25 points for Hittability and 20 points for “Workhorse” factor for a total of 100 points.

The Control category mainly concerns how good guys are at finding the strike zone and limiting walks. But it also considers command within the zone and if pitchers are good at toying with the zone.

The Whiffability category considers how good guys are at missing bats. The focus will be on what kind of stuff they’re working with and how good they are at using it to get hitters to swing and miss.

The Hittability category is a little different. Missing bats is great, but pitchers can also help themselves by manipulating contact. Guys who can get ground balls are ideal, but we’ll also be looking at proneness to home runs and line drives and for guys who just seem to have a knack for not getting hit hard.

Lastly, the Workhorse category is what it sounds like. It evaluates pitchers’ capacities for eating innings, which is not just a matter of endurance. Efficiency also helps. So does good health. And a track record.

On that note, we’re not doing a separate category for health this year. Any injury concerns we have will be applied to the category (or categories) that stand to be impacted.

Also note that a score in the middle (i.e. 15/30 or 12/25) denotes average, not failing. And while the discussion will be centered on 2014, we also have one eye on 2015. B/R prospect guru Mike Rosenbaum has thus provided some scores and scouting reports for a couple MLB-ready starters, and we’ll also be looping in a couple big-name pitchers who will be returning from injuries.

Lastly, any ties will be resolved with the following question: “If we could pick only one, who would it be?”

When you’re ready, you can read on.

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B/R MLB 500: Top 35 Third Basemen

The B/R MLB 500 series has just one position on the infield left to visit: the hot corner.

Like first base, third base is a primarily offense-oriented position. But since third base is undoubtedly a more important defensive position than first base, we came up with the following scoring system.

Third basemen get 30 points for hitting, 30 points for power, 10 points for baserunning, 20 points for defense and, like all players, 10 points for health. Add it all up, and you get 100 points.

As always, hitting entails more than just what happens after the ball leaves the bat. Results do count for something, but so does the process. Each player’s approach will be taken into account.

Power is less complicated, but results will be taken into account just as much as scouting reports. A player may have tremendous natural power, but his score will be lowered if he has a hard time making it show up in games.

For baserunning, it’s all about whether a guy can steal bases and how well, and whether he can get around the bases better (or worse) than the average player.

Defense is also simple. How well can a guy do the things third basemen are supposed to do, and can he do anything extra?

For hitting, power, baserunning and defense, keep the following in mind: A score that’s 15 out of 30 is not a failing score. That’s an “average” score. Anything better is above average. Anything worse is below average.

As for health, that’s basically 10 free points unless there’s a reason(s) to dock points. The scoring is subjective, but the general rule of thumb is that a player is only getting less than five points if he has a potentially career-altering injury.

Lastly, here’s a reminder that the whole idea is to round up guys we’d want on a team in 2014. That means top prospects who could potentially make an impact are in play, and they may be ranked higher than you think. And if there are any ties, the edge goes to the player we’d rather have.

That’s all there is to it, so let’s put this thing in third gear and get to talking about third basemen.


Note: All prospect write-ups/scores were created by B/R’s MLB Prospects Lead Writer, Mike Rosenbaum.

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