Klawchat, 7/21/17.
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Keith Law
2:16
Two steps forward, six steps back. Klawchat.
Jeremy
2:17
If Michel Baez performs in High-A as as well as in Low-A, do we start taking him seriously?
Keith Law
2:17
It'll really depend more on the secondary stuff than on performance.
Preston
2:18
What's a realistic return for the Cubs if Candelario is the lead to a package of prospects? Certainly not high-impact RP like Britton, right?
Keith Law
2:18
I don't think so, but I've always been a little bearish on his defense. He can hit though.
Erix
2:19
Hey Keith. Last week you mentioned Connor Greene as a fringe top 50 prospect. I'm curious as to what the reports on him are. Scouting the stat line (I know) shows little swing and miss, and too many walks (but an elite groundball rate). Thanks!
Keith Law
2:19
He's been up to 98 pretty regularly and will at least flash above-average secondary stuff. Still not fully filled out physically either.
Lance
2:19
First time, long time.  Can you explain Justin Smoak?  How has he turned in to what you thought he'd be after being terrible for so long?  Is it sustainable?
Keith Law
2:20
The explanations I've heard - e.g., that he's finally feeling like he can be himself as a hitter, rather than trying to prove his worth or justify a lineup spot every day - are not terribly satisfying. So, no, I can't.
john w
2:20
What's a realistic timetable for Mejia to contribute in the next year and a half-ish? And what's a reasonable expectation if he's included in a deal? Not asking for names necessarily, just wondering what Cleveland's options realistically are.
Keith Law
2:21
I'd demand a Quintana-level return. Mejia is certainly comparable to Eloy as a prospect, and you could argue he's more value as a trade asset right now because he's closer to the majors. If you believe Mejia will become even an average receiver/framer, then he might be the #1 prospect in the minors.
Drew
2:21
What is your future projection for Jamie Barria? Guy is looking pretty good so far.
Keith Law
2:21
Starter stuff, reliever delivery & command.
David S
2:21
Are you familiar with the band Ghost? If so, what do you think? I saw them open for Maiden and found them quite interesting in a good way.
Keith Law
2:22
I like their music quite a bit, but the whole Satan-worship gimmick is puerile.
Kevin
2:22
There seem to be more wide-ranging views on the Phillies rebuild than any other club. This likely stems from the fact they have very good depth (and upside, i.e.  Sixto), but lack the "can't-miss" top prospects other clubs have. On a scale of 1-10, how confident are you they could compete by 2019-2020?
Keith Law
2:22
I agree with your assessment of their system, but I don't think they're contending in 2019 unless they add significant talent from outside the organization - like signing a major free agent to supplement what they already have.
Benjamin
2:22
Thoughts on twins prospect Ricky De La Torre?
Keith Law
2:23
Ricardo? I'd refer you back to my reports on him before and right after the draft.
Jake
2:23
Do the Cubs have the pieces necessary to acquire Gray, Darvish or Verlander?
Keith Law
2:23
I would not think so.
Tom (NYC)
2:23
Hi, love the chat, and thanks for answering the question. Assuming Smith and Rosario graduate this year, what is your opinion of the NYM minor league system going forward? Also, relative to your last offseason ranking, are there any guys notably rising or falling in their minor league ranks?
Keith Law
2:25
It'll be thinner without those guys - I don't think they've drafted or signed players of quite that caliber the last two years - but I still am fairly bullish on guys like Szapucki (as long as he's healthy), Alonso, Gimenez, even Dunn, who is still just 21 years old.
John
2:25
Thanks for the chat Keith! Was wondering about the inactivity of the Padres in the trade market thus far. Have you heard anything from your sources that teams are shunning San Diego, or are they truly just holding out for a big return?
Keith Law
2:25
I've never heard of anyone "shunning" a team with players to trade.
Nick
2:26
Beltre for Devers. Who says no?
Keith Law
2:26
Both.
Dave53
2:26
Thanks for doing the talk in Berkeley two nights ago.  (You and I spoke about Dillon Maples.)  Food question: Two friends and I will soon take our ninth annual minor league baseball trip.  This year, we'll be in your area, with stops in Bowie, Aberdeen, Frederick, Hagerstown, and on up to Scranton.  Our daily pattern is a hearty breakfast, followed by beer and bar food for the rest of the day.  I couldn't find anything on your website, but do you have any breakfast recommendations along our route?
Keith Law
2:27
I know Michael Voltaggio has a place or two in Frederick, but otherwise, I'd suggest you veer off into the larger cities you're passing like Baltimore and Philly.
Nick
2:27
Seems like this Adzolay has really picked it up this year. Think he's a top 100 type, and where do you see his ceiling?
Keith Law
2:27
Had I continued past ranking 50 names, he would have been in the next ten.
JR
2:28
I know you consider the Tim Tebow "expirament" a publicity stunt (and I totally agreed with that take); but have you been surprised he has done this well?  I pretty much thought he would just wash out.  It was interesting to hear that he was consciously being an opposite field hitter.  I figured that was probably because he just lacks bat speed... but it also could indicate a player who can adapt and play within himself.  I've got the feeling now that, unless he quits, he will eventually get a September call up.  Probably for t-shirt sales of course but still, way better than I ever expected.
Keith Law
2:29
He does lack bat speed, or any other useful tool except pull power. If they call him up, it's an insult to every other player in the minors. Bill Veeck is dead. Let's leave the marketing stunts  in the cemetery too.
Biscuit
2:29
Would the Nats ever consider calling the Angels and offering a deal centered around Trout and Turner?  No timetable yet for Turner, but hard to envision him helping a ton again this year, especially with wrist injuries tending to linger. Maybe Nats ask for Simmons back as well, and send a few prospects back to the Angels.
Keith Law
2:29
Every week, I get questions about the Angels trading Trout, and the answer is always the same: The owner has made it clear he's not trading him. Fin.
The Bilmo
2:29
Kershaw or Koufax?
Keith Law
2:29
Kershaw.
BJ
2:30
Fair to say Javier Guerra is a bust.  Heard reports that he can't hit breaking balls.  Numbers don't lie .226 20 BB 100 K
Keith Law
2:30
He's had a very significant health issue the last year-plus. If you feel good calling him a "bust" for that, be my guest.
Nick
2:30
Andrew Pullin - Why does he continue to get no love? Not a Phillies fan by any means, but love what he's done the last 2 seasons at each stop. Thought he'd sneak on to at least 1 top 100 sheet, since he should be getting a call up this fall (or risk being lost...).
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