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Impressions of Seid thus far


This will be Bruce Seid's fifth draft at the helm. What are everybody's impressions thus far?

 

I personally think it is too early to grade the guys from the last draft but based on results thus far I think you'd have to give his 1st round picks the following grades; Arnett (F), Covey (INC), Jungmann ©, Bradley (D). Granted there is more to a draft than the first round, as a guy like Mike Fiers has shown, and it's a lot easier picking in the first ten or so picks as Jack Z often had the luxury of doing as opposed to Bruce who hasn't gotten to pick higher than 12th, but even with that said I think the seat has to be getting a little hot.

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Up until the previous draft Seid has been below-par when it came to selecting in the first round. However, he's been very good with the later rounds, with good picks such as Jimmy Nelson, Mike Fiers, Tyler Thornburg, etc. The previous draft seems to be his best one yet, with Coulter and Taylor quickly showing results while Roache offers tantalizing potential. My biggest gripe about him was the 2011 draft in which they passed on Fernandez, Guerrieri, Barnes, and Stephenson (all of them seems to have a ceiling of a #2 pitcher or higher) to get Jungmann and Bradley. Jungmann, albeit solid, is unspectacular and looking at the results seems like a back of the rotation starter. Bradley has struggled mightily, although he could have been playing injured the whole time. Overall in the first round of the 2011 draft it seemed as if he was specifically trying to find guys that were going to get to the majors quickly, regardless of stuff, potential, etc. Of course, that's only my honest opinion.
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Yeah I'm still pissed about 2011. I think just about everyone viewed Jungmann/Bradley as "safe" and more likely to end up middle of the rotation guys. The thinking was they were close to the bigs and could arrive as early as this year. Obviously that's not the case. I was really high on Guerreri and I still don't understand why, with 2 1st rounders, they didn't draft one safe and one high-upside, albeit risky guy. Sure they took a risky guy in the 2nd (Lopez) but I think that was a lot more risky than someone like Guerreri, or any other HS pitcher from the states.
This is Jack Burton in the Pork Chop Express, and I'm talkin' to whoever's listenin' out there.
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Well, I just posted in the 2013 Draft topic that 8 of the 10 1st rd picks have been College players. Covey a non-signed pick so only Coulter the lone HS aged player picked in 1st rd. 72 of MiLB's top 100 prospect watch are of HS Aged draftees vs 28 College exp. draftees. Kinda tells you right there Seid is picking on the opposite spectrum 8-2 vs 3-7.

Taking away 2012 as incomplete the three drafts prior and next 2 HS Hitters/Pitchers taken to each pick

Jungmann: OF Brandon Nimmo,RHP Jose Fernandez,RHP Tyler Beede,C Blake Swihart

Bradley:RHP Tyler Beede,C Blake Swihart,RHP Taylor Guerrieri, SS Jake Hager

2010:

Covey was a HS pick Next College B/P were:RHP Hayden Simpson, 2b Kolbrin Vitek. HS's were:OF Jake Skole,RHP turned 3b Kaleb Cowart

2009:All College so next two HS B/P

Eric Arnett:SS Nick Franklin,CF Raymond Fuentes,LHP Tyler Skaggs,RHP Brooks Pounders

Kentrail Davis:LHP Tyler Skaggs,SS Chris Owings,RHP Brooks Pounders,CF Everett Williams

Kyle Heckathorn:RHP Brooks Pounder,CF Everett Williams,SS Mykel Givens, LHP Andrew Oliver

 

Looking that over, that is

Nimmo:Low A to date

Fernandez:High A 2era for Minors

Beede:Nothing prospect to date

Swihart:#72 Prospect pre 2012

Guerrieri:#90 Prosepect pre2012

Hager:A Ball to date

Simpson:High A 6+ERA

Vitek:AA to date

Skole:High A

Cowart:#46Prospect 100+Rbi last year as a 3b in minors

Franklin:#22Prospect

Fuentes:AA to date

Skaggs:#9 Prospect

Pounders:High A to date

Owings:AA to date

Williams:High A to date

Givens:A ball

Oliver:7 ML Starts for Detroit already 0-5 7+era

 

So That's 3 top 50prospects 3more top 100 prospects vs. 1 top 100 prospect. 2009 burns missing Skaggs and Franklin.

I can see people argue on well Franklin wasn't a need since Brewers had Escobar and Cowart because they had Lawrie, but the argument is you draft BPA regardless of position.

He may have finally got it last year but he had the comfort of 3picks and chose only 1 Coulter HS aged pick.

I don't know what it is about College players failing to their draft selection....Maybe it's Mental? Playing in your age group being the best on the field. Get drafted go to A ball and 18/19 years olds are making you look like how you made all the opponents look like in College? And it just defeats them?

 

But to me it's clear a need to draft more HS players than College. Since 2000, looking at 1st rd picks, once you get past the 5,6,7th college pick players, It's a Vast Majority of busts,Replacement level ML careers. Arnett was 13th college picked in 09. Jungmann/Bradley were the 7th and 8th college drafted in 2011 Roache was the 13th college drafted but as a top 15 pick projection that has him as 6th or better.

 

This team needs to wake up to these facts since they aren't top 10 pickings anymore and turn to drafting HS players as the College players aren't turning out.

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Well that's when there are better HS options than college options. If there's a college guy that's able to mash 30 home runs or hit 97 on the gun with a decent breaking pitch compared to a HS guy that's only getting it up to 91 and is just pure projection or is only hitting at gap power, I would prefer the college guys. Of course that scenario won't happen very often, but that is the case where the college option is better.
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FYI Tyler Beede is a sophomore at Vanderbilt and could be a top 10 overall pick for what looks to be a loaded 2014 draft class. he was up to 96/97 last fall, and should be the Commodores Saturday (No. 2) starter this spring on a team that has legitimate national championship aspirations.

 

And part of the reason for drafting college guys is that they develop more quickly in regard to trade value. I'm almost positive Gord Ash is on record stating this, possibly Melvin too.

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Touki Toussaint is the main name to remember among the 2014 class of prep pitchers. Very loose, live arm with a quick-twitch frame reminiscent of Doc Gooden. He was up to 97 down in Florida for our big tourney in Jupiter last October with an equally nasty curveball. It's easy to see him throwing harder, more consistently, which is scary to think.

 

Nicholas Gordon, son of Tom and brother of Dee, is ranked high given his bat and actions at SS, but he can pitch too, with a similar impressive 1-2 punch as his father. FB has been up to 94-95 and curve is a hammer. He will start his career as a SS as it stands now, but has the arm to fall back on if all else fails.

 

LHP Justus Sheffield is the younger brother of Jordan who is eligible this year. Not quite the same lithe, live frame, but I saw him up to 93 last October and he shows a pretty good sense for pitching for his age.

 

RHP Bryce Montes De Oca is a monster at 6-7, 265. He was up to 95 in Jupiter, but didn't show good command or feel for offspeed stuff.

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I guess the question is, "How much do the failures of Arnett and Covey reflect on Seid?" I don't think anyone can begrudge him for what happened with Covey. The guy had an unknown health issue that seemed to be found out literally last minute. Arnett is a bit more of a black mark on his track record.
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Therein lies the dilemma. You want to give the guys he has drafted time to develop. But at the same time given Milwaukee's market size and financial realities you can't really afford to let a guy helm 5 or 6 drafts and come away without anything more than role players and second division regulars, which unfortunately is where I feel like we're headed on our current track.
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I guess the question is, "How much do the failures of Arnett and Covey reflect on Seid?" I don't think anyone can begrudge him for what happened with Covey. The guy had an unknown health issue that seemed to be found out literally last minute. Arnett is a bit more of a black mark on his track record.

 

Gonna jump around here some so I just quoted the whole thing at once.

 

First, I absolutely despise how contracts/physicals work in baseball. A physical should happen immediately after the draft and prior to any contract negotiations, to me that's just basic common sense. How can you negotiate in good faith if you don't know the athlete is fully healthy? Families will overreact to a type 1 diabetes diagnosis, and I don't mean to downplay it's severity, but with modern medicine life does go on. I've coached kids who were diagnosed on the verge going to college to play sports and the reaction in every case has been a quick step back from everything, but then eventually the child and parents realize it's all about routine and things start moving forward again. Of course if you're diagnosed a week before you have to sign a professional contract you are going to walk away, there's just not enough time to process everything and start moving forward again.

 

Second, Covey would have ended up being a bad pick where as Rondon was the right pick and didn't get signed. The Brewers are still struggling to identify high upside HS pitchers that will have any kind of MLB career. Z at least hit on Gallardo, Rogers (I hope), and Odorizzi. Granted they were too far apart and Rogers has been hurt way too much, but what does Seid have in his pocket from a pitching standpoint? Especially in the early rounds?

 

I do like Thornburg but I don't like his mechanics so much, Nelson has always scared me, Bradley flopped out of the gate, and I despised the Jungmann pick. Sure there's some 2/3 potential in that group, and I'm pulling hard for Thornburg, but Nelson has always struggled with control, Bradley was pitching with Wolf type velocity as a mid 1st rounder, and Jungmann doesn't look to be anything special either.

 

As TLB said, I want to like Seid, I always find his interviews in the booth and on radio to be informative and worthwhile. He seems like a very likeable dude, but from a pitching standpoint I don't like his draft philosophy at all. I will say I like a couple of last year's early round draft positional picks very much, but I would like some pitchers with high upside that we can get excited about and could maybe one day turn into stars.

 

Drafting college pitchers to be 3s in the rotation with 1st round picks doesn't excite me at all and yes I do understand the value of any kind of MLB career vs no MLB career. I also understand that college players are much more likely to reach MLB. However, as I've often stated we won't get impact talent drafting college players in the middle to late part of the first round, impact players in that range tend to be HS players that pan out. I don't want to rehash literally dozens of posts on the subject, but I don't want to turn into Oakland or Toronto who drafted a bunch of high floor players which killed their farm systems and set them back on the MLB level as well.

 

Finally, I find the Brewers lack of activity internationally to be appalling. The high bonus babies they signed were terrible so far with the exception of Peralta, and only singing a couple of players each year isn't going to get it done. It's much better to take a shot with 4-5 400K+ latin kids each year than blow $10 million on some aging middling pitcher. If even 1 of those kids pan out you save tremendously on the backend of the deal. I really don't understand why the Brewers are so obsessed with spending up front where everyone can see it. To compete long-term Milwaukee needs to be more savvy with their money than that. Spend more to develop young talent and it will pay off tremendously on the back side.

 

I don't give a hoot about appeasing the fan base with signings like Ramirez that are as much about saying "see we are trying to win" as much as they are about production. I don't want the Brewers to spend money just to spend it, maxing the payroll every season is fiscally stupid. I do want them to spend wisely and draw as much value as possible out of each signing if they do play around in FA.

 

I guess I look at it like this... for 1 year of Suppan the Brewers could have signed 5 of the biggest signing bonuses in Latin America, they could have plucked every "it" player down there. Maybe you land a Profar in 2009, or a Montero in 2006, or Sano in 2009... most of the best Latin signings seem to be right around where the Brewers top out in that 500K range, but I'd rather take a shot throwing 1st round money at some high upside prospect than I would spending high 7 figures for likes of Suppan, Wolf, Davis, Looper, etc. The veterans might help you win now, but they won't put your franchise over the top and I desperately want to win a World Series. However I also believe that you need at least 3 legitimate 2s in your rotation to do it.

 

While I do like that Seid has focused more on pitching, I don't like the lack of upside through all levels of pitching in the minors. For example, we don't have a single LHSP with a big arm, not one at any level, how is that even possible? Looking around baseball just about every organization has 2 guys with the potential to be #1s if they work out, where's that in our system? The Cards have 3 players to be legitimately excited about, Cincy also has 3, Pit has 4 and 3 in the top 50, the Cubs added one of the best scouting directors in baseball, have drafted well recently as I really like Baez, and made a nice international signing in Soler.

 

Every organization in our division has better impact talent higher in the system than we do and unfortunately that's an indictment of what Seid and Brewers have been doing with the farm system. The Brewers might have a better MLB team today, but what about 2 years from now? If Melvin doesn't cycle some more veterans into younger impact potential talent like with the Greinke trade I just don't see Milwaukee maintaining any kind of legitimate success. We're simply way too top heavy with players approaching or in their 30s making maximum coin, we need more even distribution of talent and pay relative to production and age, and if Seid isn't able to draft/sign young impact pitching then we better trade for it when we can.

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Well said, TC07. The fact that the Brewers failed to realize Rodon's potential and that they weren't willing to pony up for him in the 2011 draft (where they COULD overspend at will) is just downright disappointing. They picked the seemingly "surefire" picks in Jungmann and Bradley as they skipped over high upside guys like Stephenson, Fernandez, and Guerrieri and ended up with a guy who's played terrible and a guy who's looking more like a #4 starter. They were willing to shell out millions for guys like Suppan but they can't go over $1 million for high upside and relatively cheap international guys. Sure, the HS guys and international guys have a greater likelihood of flaming out but the Brewers aren't gonna compete consistently for a long time with aging veterans and #3 and #4 starters. They need young pitchers that can be strikeout pitchers and they need young hitters that can be good contributors in a major league lineup. Even when getting young guys the possibilities are small, but that possibility is greater than when they sign aging back of the rotation starters and drafting potential #4 starters.
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I guess I look at it like this... for 1 year of Suppan the Brewers could have signed 5 of the biggest signing bonuses in Latin America, they could have plucked every "it" player down there. Maybe you land a Profar in 2009, or a Montero in 2006, or Sano in 2009... most of the best Latin signings seem to be right around where the Brewers top out in that 500K range, but I'd rather take a shot throwing 1st round money at some high upside prospect than I would spending high 7 figures for likes of Suppan, Wolf, Davis, Looper, etc. The veterans might help you win now, but they won't put your franchise over the top and I desperately want to win a World Series. However I also believe that you need at least 3 legitimate 2s in your rotation to do it.

 

While I do like that Seid has focused more on pitching, I don't like the lack of upside through all levels of pitching in the minors. For example, we don't have a single LHSP with a big arm, not one at any level, how is that even possible? Looking around baseball just about every organization has 2 guys with the potential to be #1s if they work out, where's that in our system? The Cards have 3 players to be legitimately excited about, Cincy also has 3, Pit has 4 and 3 in the top 50, the Cubs added one of the best scouting directors in baseball, have drafted well recently as I really like Baez, and made a nice international signing in Soler.

 

Every organization in our division has better impact talent higher in the system than we do and unfortunately that's an indictment of what Seid and Brewers have been doing with the farm system. The Brewers might have a better MLB team today, but what about 2 years from now? If Melvin doesn't cycle some more veterans into younger impact potential talent like with the Greinke trade I just don't see Milwaukee maintaining any kind of legitimate success. We're simply way too top heavy with players approaching or in their 30s making maximum coin, we need more even distribution of talent and pay relative to production and age, and if Seid isn't able to draft/sign young impact pitching then we better trade for it when we can.

 

Well in order for the Brewers to get talent back they are going to have to trade talent. Gallardo is really the only tradeable piece that the Brewers have right now and to be honest Gallardo is gone once he hits FA there is no way the Brewers are going to be able to compete with the Red Sox and the Yankees who will have a lot of payroll available to them when Gallardo is a FA. After this season the Brewers need to trade Gallardo as the draft hasn't really worked out all that well in terms of impact players as of right now. Not going to turn this into a trade suggestion post but the Brewers either need to draft better (possible but not likely) or sign some international talent (probably not going to happen at all).

 

Right now there is no cycling of talent. While I liked the last draft as the Brewers actually went with some athletic players pitching is still rather blah its good but nothing that screams #1 or Ace type of a pitcher right now.

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To have had the #12 picks in '11 and to have gone so safe with Jungmann & Bradley is pretty indefensible. That's where the potential #1 type(s) that could be in the system should've come from. Man, that stings badly.
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Well, as far as the cycling of talent, I'd like to think that if the team is in the tank around the All-Star break, Melvin will seriously consider dealing the likes of Hart, Weeks, etc. I'm not sure ownership will allow it (and I've been pretty pro-Attanasio for the most part). Time will tell, though.

 

I agree that I would have liked to see more aggressive picks in last year's draft. As far as international talent, my assumption was that the cost of international scouting was prohibitive in the past. I'm not sure that's still the case...you look at what teams like Pittsburgh are doing, and it doesn't seem like it should break the bank for a successful franchise like Milwaukee.

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The Pirates I'm sure are far more envy in what the Brewers have accomplished through their scouting and player development systems, and probably learned a lot over the years, than vice versa. If the Pirates are successful, just the like the Brewers have been, it will be because they nailed their early picks such as Cole and Taillon just like the Brewers did with Prince and Braun. I know you were speaking more to their international efforts, but it's not like those signings are the ones pushing the Pirates on the brink of snapping 20 years of losing.

 

As for Rodon, yes it's frustrating that the Brewers drafted him only to see his velocity spike and have the pieces fall into place so quickly. However, keep in mind that they took Rodon in the 16th round. It's not like he's a true candidate for the ones labelled "the ones that got away," and any criticism the Brewers receive for that in my opinion is unfair.

 

I do agree with the Brewers being too conservative with their pick of Jungmann. Not of Bradley, though, at least not to the same extent. I'm still confident in Bradley's arm, the pieces just need to be pulled together after a disappointing debut season. If he doesn't work out it's not because the Brewers were conservative.

 

Jungmann on the other hand never profiled to be more than a 3/4 starter. One could argue that there's nothing wrong with that, but with 2 first-round picks in the teens, I agree that you have to go for the home run.

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I hope for the next draft Seid tries to go for the home run with the pick. With the depth the Brewers have in their farm system, I don't see a reason why we shouldn't take a risk. Hopefully a guy with good raw tools or a guy with a good fastball and curveball combo.

 

I really hope that last year's draft is a start of a new trend. Instead of being conservative about the picks the Brewers went with guys who had tremendous talent but had some things to prove (Coulter and Taylor are high schoolers and need to face better competition and develop whereas Roache was injured), and essentially did the best they could with their late-round picks.

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In regards to impact talent, look at a team like the Mets. They struck gold by trading a few guys that they didn't even draft in the first place, and are now one of the top systems in baseball after mediocre drafting.

 

Yes, you should rely on your drafting, but it's not all that matters regarding impact talent. The Brewers have several guys they could hit big on. Maybe you couldn't get a Beltran for Wheeler type of deal but you could get something good for Hart, Weeks, Ramirez, and probably even Maldonado. Gallardo would definitely get a nice haul as well.

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In regards to impact talent, look at a team like the Mets. They struck gold by trading a few guys that they didn't even draft in the first place, and are now one of the top systems in baseball after mediocre drafting.

 

Yes, you should rely on your drafting, but it's not all that matters regarding impact talent. The Brewers have several guys they could hit big on. Maybe you couldn't get a Beltran for Wheeler type of deal but you could get something good for Hart, Weeks, Ramirez, and probably even Maldonado. Gallardo would definitely get a nice haul as well.

 

But you have to be a pretty bad team and/or have a GM willing to do that. The Brewers aren't terrible so they don't need to trade off all their valuable pieces and even if they were, Melvin isn't the type of GM that usually makes those trades. He has almost always just let guys go in FA or waited until the absolute last minute (i.e. trade deadline of last year of contract).

 

I wish he would make more trades when guys have a year or 2 left on their contract and could bring in big hauls. This year with Hart would have been absolutely perfect. He had a full year left, was relatively cheap, was very productive and we had replacement options (Gamel/Green/even Morris).

This is Jack Burton in the Pork Chop Express, and I'm talkin' to whoever's listenin' out there.
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If he doesn't work out it's not because the Brewers were conservative.

 

I wonder how much of the blame is due to poor player development. It just seems like some organizations can turn many players into gold. For example, the Cards just keep producing talent for the MLB team, yet they often draft in the lower third and don't have ton's of supplemental picks. Yet they never seem to have a shortage of players to add to the major league roster. Just like Dave Duncan seems to be able to make any pitcher into Cy Young, it seems the Cardinals have the ability to identify and correct player weaknesses much better than other organizations. It just seems that there isn't a lot of player development success in the Brewer system. We either seem to hit on a player right away or the player just never puts it together.

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One thing that has dissappointed me with the Brewers drafts lately is they seem to only look at a positional players ability to hit, not his overall "Five Tool" abilities. Everyone in baseball knows the Brewers have been on of the best offensive clubs year in and year out during Melvins tenure, but one of the worst defensively, also. And every year at draft time, there are several players that we pass on that are accomplished on all aspects of the game that are taken by another club within a couple of picks (Lewis Brinson by one pick last year comes to mind) so that we can draft another "masher" that is allergic to leather (both Clint Coulter and Tyrone Taylor were very good to great offensively, and pretty much an embarrasment defensively). I just wish that we put a little more premium on defense, too.
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And every year at draft time, there are several players that we pass on that are accomplished on all aspects of the game that are taken by another club within a couple of picks (Lewis Brinson by one pick last year comes to mind) so that we can draft another "masher" that is allergic to leather (both Clint Coulter and Tyrone Taylor were very good to great offensively, and pretty much an embarrasment defensively). I just wish that we put a little more premium on defense, too.

 

What? Both Taylor and Coulter are not an embarrasment defensively. I am not sure what you are going off of but both of these two are very athletic and should become more than adequate at whatever position they will play. Coulter may not stick at catcher but that wont be because of his defense there. It will be more along the lines of the Brewers wanting his bat in the lineup sooner rather than later. Coulter will probably become an average to an above average defensive 3B in my opinion. He is far from what you have described his defensive abilities.

 

Drafting based on defense should be the very last thing being evaluated as defense can be taught while athleticism can not be.

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And every year at draft time, there are several players that we pass on that are accomplished on all aspects of the game that are taken by another club within a couple of picks (Lewis Brinson by one pick last year comes to mind) so that we can draft another "masher" that is allergic to leather (both Clint Coulter and Tyrone Taylor were very good to great offensively, and pretty much an embarrasment defensively). I just wish that we put a little more premium on defense, too.

 

What? Both Taylor and Coulter are not an embarrasment defensively. I am not sure what you are going off of but both of these two are very athletic and should become more than adequate at whatever position they will play. Coulter may not stick at catcher but that wont be because of his defense there. It will be more along the lines of the Brewers wanting his bat in the lineup sooner rather than later. Coulter will probably become an average to an above average defensive 3B in my opinion. He is far from what you have described his defensive abilities.

 

Drafting based on defense should be the very last thing being evaluated as defense can be taught while athleticism can not be.

I guess "embarrasment" was maybe a little hard. I understand that they are both great athletes, it's just that for both of them their bats are definitely ahead of their gloves. There is a distinct possibility that each, especially Coulter, may still be in Helena this season because of the need to continue to advance their defensive skills, even though it's obvious that their hitting skills are ready for the next level.

 

I also didn't mean that we should look to defensive first players, only that if there is a player, like Lewis Brinson, available that is advanced for his age offensively AND defensively that it would be nice to take those guys once in a while instead of guys known mostly for their hitting skills that don't always have defensive abilities to match. And for what it's worth, I would also love to see Coulter end up at third eventually if catching doesn't work out.

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