There’s a whole lot more of Jason Parks– whose name I keep mistakenly writing with an “e,” for some reason– and Kevin Goldstein than there is Keith Law in this post, but I’m too lazy to create a new graphic featuring the Baseball Prospectus pair, so… Law on the mountain it is.

Anywho, following the release of BP’s top 11 Jays prospects list, Goldstein and Professor Parks had a nice bit of Jays discussion on their podcast, and Parkes answered a bunch of questions about them in his most recent chat.

Highlights are below, as well as all your Jays-related, and Jays-related-ish, tidbits from Keith Law’s Thursday chat at

The BP Podcast…

After Goldstein notes that the list of Jays three-star prospects goes 20 players deep, and Parks says that he thinks they’ve got the best system in the game, they get to the nitty gritty. Travis d’Arnaud is “an all-star waiting to happen, year after year after year,” Parks says. “Best catching prospect in baseball,” Goldstein adds. “I think he’s going to be a monster,” Parks says.

“Gose can fuckin’ do everything,” Parks tells us. “If you could go above 80, you could go above it for Gose,” he says of his arm. The hit tool is obviously the issue that might hold him back. “In a perfect world he could be a lot like– another former Blue Jay– I think he could be a lot like Devon White,” Goldstein adds. “A guy with power and some speed and he’d strike out 140 times every year.”

“This guy knows how to pitch at such an advanced level at such a young age,” Parks says of Justin Nicolino, who is the pitcher among the numerous high-end Jays pitching prospects that excites him the most. “He knows how to manipulate a baseball while still throwing strikes.” Goldstein adds that it’s “hard to find 19-year-olds with a 60 changeup.”

“He is able to manipulate his fastball– he’s able to change speeds on his fastball, he’s able to locate his fastball in and out, up and down. He’s able to throw the changeup against both lefties and righties. It’s a true– I never say this about young pitchers, but it’s not 60 projected, I think he actually has a 60 pitch,” Parks says.

“The breaking ball is not there yet, and it may never get there, but it may not have to get there,” he adds. “I think this is a guy who is not going to stumble a lot on the way up.”

Matt Dean is Goldstein’s pick for the most intriguing prospect in the system: “a classic third base profile,” he says, who slid in the draft for signability reasons, and who the Jays went well over slot for. There’s a shortage of third base prospects who look like they will stick at the position and show something with the bat, they add.

The BP Chat…

Xavier (Texas): Bigger offensive upside: Gose or Marisnick?
Jason Parks: Gose lacks the hit tool to project as a plus hitter, although his power is legit and the rest of his tools make me weak in the knees. Marisnick has the potential to hit for both average and power, so Im going to give him the edge.

Ed (Winnipeg): How could you let Goldstein rate Marisnick ahead of Gose? HOW? I thought you were cool, man.
Jason Parks: I really like both players, and Gose obviously has crazy tools, but I think Marisnick is the better prospect right now. He is more balanced at the plate, with a better hit tool that will continue to play as he climbs. Gose is an athletic freak, but I have concerns that the hit tool will limit his success at the plate. In the field, Gose can do just about anything he wants, with tons of speed and one of the strongest arms in baseball. It’s close, but I’d give the nod to Marisnick as well.

Mike (utica): what is your take on noah syndergaard, justin nicolino, and daniel norris. Who do you like the best and what is their ceilings?
Jason Parks: I really like all three, but I prefer the lefties, especially Nicolino. Being able to manipulate the ball while maintaining control is an art that even major league pitchers struggle with. Nicolino might lack crazy great stuff, but his pitchability is quite advanced. Given his projectable frame, I think the stuff will continue to improve as well. He could be a monster. Huge fan.

Kyle Drabek (a deep dark hole): Shoot straight with me. What are my chances of making it?
Jason Parks: Depends on your definition of making it. I think you can pitch in the majors, once you adjust to the failures of the past. It’s one of the hardest obstacles to overcome. I think you can do it. Will you ever be a #1 or #2? Probably not. But you can contribute at the highest level, and that will have value. Plus, you are a Texan. Suck it up and get back on the horse.

C.J. (Milwaukee): Does Anthony Gose’s hit tool have enough #want to afford him the opportunity to showcase those tools as a major league regular?
Jason Parks: It needs to improve, but it only needs to find average utility for the speed/power to elevate his offensive profile. If the hit tool finds a way to play at the major league level, Gose could be an all-star.

tjco1990 (KY): How would u rank these 3 young high ceiling arms….Daniel Norris, Tyrell Jenkins and Noah Syndergaard? Long way to go but their upside in enormous. Thanks Professor
Jason Parks: Norris, Jenkins, Syndergaard

Steve C (Toronto): Fill in the blank: Kyle Drabek will win ___ MLB games in his career.
Jason Parks: 50

Bobby (Toronto): I’m very disappointed in the Jays off-season due to having horrible owners. Give me 3 reasons why I should spend my hard earned money to buy season tickets this year. [Note: Waaaahhhhh!!!!]
Jason Parks: Reasons 1,2,3: The team has talent and will be competitive despite not landing Darvish or Fielder.

John (Denver, CO) [Note: really?]: How would you compare/contrast Rosario, Mescadoro, and D’Arnaud?
Jason Parks: D’Arnaud is the complete package and the best of the bunch. He could be an all-star on a regular basis. Mesoraco and Rosario are close for me, with Mesoraco getting the edge because of his dreamy eyes.

Andrew Stoeten ( [Note: Not me, just presumably some failure of a shitstain hoping to embarrass me after I didn't quibble with Mike Wilner giving Alex Anthopoulos a B+ on the radio last week.] What letter grade would you give AA’s performance as a GM so far? What would you like to see him improve?
Jason Parks: GMs can always improve, which isn’t to say that AA’s performance has been bad. I think he is an intelligent, creative GM that is trying to remain competitive in one of the hardest divisions in the game. I love the org”s approach to amateur talent acquisition.

Mike (Utica, NY): Can Nicolino become a Cliff Lee or Cole Hamels type pitcher if he hits his ceiling?
Jason Parks: CLiff Lee only became Cliff Lee after he failed and then made the necessary adjustments. The basic answer is no. Those guys are aces and its unlikely that Nicolino develops to that level. He has a huge ceiling, but there are very few aces.

Nolan (San Jose): Is it fair to say the Jays have the best farm system in baseball?
Jason Parks: I happen to think they have the best system, but I love high-ceilings and toolsy projections.

Mike (Utica, NY): If Marisnick can stay in center, can he become what Rocco Baldelli should have been?
Jason Parks: Not bad. Some people think he can stick and some think he slides to RF. He’s certainly a legit five-tool talent.

jhardman (Apex, NC): Can you give me your thoughts on the long term value of these third base prospects: Moustakas, Chisenhall, Olt, Lawrie. And whether they will stay at 3B.
Jason Parks: Lawrie has made himself into a better defensive player, but its never going to be great. My rankings: Lawrie, Moose, Chisenhall, Olt.

Zooey (LA): The Jays make the playoffs at least once in the next 3 seasons, True or False?
Jason Parks: I’d like to say true, but I believe the answer is false. Sorry.

Layin’ Down the Law…

Wes (PA)
Any hope for a Drabek rebound in 2012?
I think so. Vegas was really not the right spot for a guy who was overthrowing when he got into trouble – the harder he tries to throw, the worse his command, and the worse the breaking ball gets.

Craig (Toronto)
Jose Bautista recently said in a interview that he’s been tested for PED’s 16 times since his 2010 season but only 3 times prior. Is MLB going to start burning suspected witches soon too?
I just saw that this morning – MLB should be ashamed if that’s true. They’re falling prey to that same thinking about how you can tell who’s using PEDs just by looking at the back of his baseball card.

Brandon (OC, CA)
Keith… really enjoy your columns, podcasts, food tweets. I’m particularly looking forward to your prospect article… without giving too much away, does it seem to you that AAA and AA are much thinner in talent and depth than in years past? Keep up the good work.
They absolutely are. I’m finding my top 100 is loaded with high-upside guys from A-ball or below.

ar (philly)
can’t believe people are still defending the howard contract. whatever. what’s your opinion on the 6-7 year pitching contracts that hamels is in line for?
I can’t imagine ever giving a pitcher 7 years. I suppose there’s some situation where you are in a short window, and figure you’ll go for it over the next two years and will live with the risk … and if your owner is OK with that, sure. But it flies in the face of everything I believe to be true about player valuation and projection.

Bret (Toronto)
Is it reasonable to project Anthony Gose to become similar to the player BJ Upton has been the past few years?
They’re not that similar.

sweat (Calgary, AB)
Do you think AA and the Jays are on the right path to providing a team that can compete for a playoff spot for years to come? A lot of the local ‘reporters’ seem to be furious the Jays didn’t sign Fielder.
Yes, they’re on the right path. You need to ignore those reporters more or less permanently, because that is straight-up rabblerousing.

JJ (Liberty Twp, OH)
Worst free agent contract given out this winter?

Comments (56)

  1. So much to be excited about here, yet I keep going back to that 50 career wins projection for Drabek and it bums me the fuck out. 

  2. If D’Arnaud becomes an All-Star year after year after year, I could care less if Drabek wins 5 games let alone 50.

    I love all the Marisnick talk. 

  3. Zooey (LA): The Jays make the playoffs at least once in the next 3 seasons, True or False?Jason Parks: I’d like to say true, but I believe the answer is false. Sorry.

    So much for the rebuild !!  Goodbye Jose.  Now what ?

  4. Yeah but what if he does that in two years, and then yells “fuck you haters” and retires  like a king. #glasshalffull

  5. Haha, really? “Now what”? 

  6. Or he wins all 50 in one season and then after throwing the winning WS pitch his arm literally drops off his body and drags itself away because of all the abuse it suffered that year…

  7. sigh. too true. disappointing, but the writing was on the wall with the lack of prime time moves this offseason.

    still gonna be a fun team to watch; wonder if AA will actually be around to see the ‘potential’ realized….

  8. we all fantasize that zooey deschanel has an interest in the jays

  9. Because the writing’s on the wallllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    The writing’s on the waaaaaaaaaaaallllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

  10. There’s so much to be excited about here. Patience is key. 

    Look, we all want these guys to develop overnight and have an all-star at every position. But that’s not how it works. It’s a good thing that rabble-rousing reporters and mouthbreathing fans aren’t running the team. They’d be just like JP Ricciardi and Gord Ash, i.e. the most recent objects of their scorn, before that mantle was passed to that cheap-fuck-water-carrier idiot Alex Anthopoulous.

    Holy shit, unless you’re going to be dead in 3 to 5 years, relax. The goods are coming.

  11. I’m really looking forward to watching all these players develop as the Jays miss the playoffs for the next three years.
    Honestly, who wouldn’t want to watch the Jays this season when there are so many prospects several years away from the majors?

    I, for one, advocate patience and restraint in building a baseball team, as well as in life. Taking awesome drugs and fucking countless hot women may lead to short-term gratification but just imagine how much you would later regret those actions. I know that if I live my life according to God I will be rewarded for all eternity.
    Likewise, many people wanted Prince Fielder and we’re willing to sacrifice the economic value on the later years of his contract for a wild and crazy next few seasons. That would like spending a couple months’ salary on an eight-ball and a team of horny hookers instead of staying home and reading your bible.
    Alex Anthopolous is God. If we have faith in His plan we will have endless championships in the future.
    All you non-believers are going straight to Hell.

  12. Good breakdown on a positional basis for the AL East.

  13. swag swag swag swag im da besssssssssss

  14. Lots to quibble with there.  And very consipcuously chose not to include Cordero in Jays bullpen because the signing isn’t official yet.

  15. His breakdown not mine. What do you have to quibble with outside of Cordero’s exclusion? Do you think including Cordero and taking Litsch out makes the Jays pen better than the Yanks? I’m not making my own judgement, I’m just asking.

  16. Good read. Thanks. 
    Dont agree with everything, obviously. But its nice to put things into perspective and see that the Jays actually stack up pretty nicely even in the division from hell. Especially considering this team is still very much a work in progress and with so much wiggle room in terms of moveable pieces, which we have been led to believe AA is going to try to package into upgrades at the trade deadline.
    Jesus….is it fucking spring yet?

  17. State of the franchise is a fucking joke, they just answer questions we’ve heard the answers to a million times. Why not ask something original? Like…why the fuck can we never watch Jays batting practice? Or…do you plan on hitting Thames 2nd in the lineup again this season, and if so, why?

  18. “State of the franchise is a fucking joke”

    Other than some dumb questions, it’s been pretty interesting.

    Beeston just said they’re looking at trying to put natural grass in there.  I don’t believe that’s ever been discussed before.  In fact I think there are some older Beeston quotes where he said it was out of the question.

    Also, AA seemed to be implying that the Jays offered more money and years for Beltran than the Cards did, but he didn’t want to DH or play on turf.  (At least it seemed like that, what with AA’s hypotheticals).

  19. Haha I’m watching and am aware of all the answers. It has gotten a little more interesting, but I feel the questions could be a little more non-media stories related. Somebody should punch the guy who asked for more Canadians.   

  20. “Somebody should punch the guy who asked for more Canadians.”

    YES.  Agreed.

  21. Reading between the AA speak, it seems like the Jays haven’t made moves yet because teams wanted Lawrie and Alvarez in deals.

    AA is really hammering the ‘the offseason isn’t the only time you can make deals’ line.

  22. Awesome question about interleague play, followed by great answers imo. Nice to see!

  23. Wow…guy says AA greatly overpaid for Colby. What in the fuck is wrong with these people?

  24. Didn’t AA pay the Phillies an extra 5 million to get top prospects? If Drabek turns out to only win 50 games , that would be a huge disappointment with his pedigree.

  25. Holds with what  he he’s been saying all winter. Look for lots of action come July.

  26. Yeah, but looking at the trade overall, D’arnaud and Drabek seem to have essentially swapped ‘star’ projections.  At the time Drabek was can’t miss, and Darnaud was viewed as the third best prospect in the deal by some margin.  Plus Taylor for Wallace for Gose looks good right now.

    So, I think you’ve got to be relatively pleased with the trade overall (right now), even though Drabek has regressed to this point.

  27. I guess money doesn’t correlate with intelligence after all.

  28. I think when it’s all said and done Gose is going to make that deal look great. Thinking his hitting will take a big leap forward this year.

  29. Perhaps outside observes realize that other teams in the AL will upgrade their teams such as the Angels & Rangers so it will be hard to get the 2nd wilcard.

    As it stands now, the Yankees, red Sox , Angels & Texans have a chance at either the division or the 2 wildcards each years. The Jays could pass the Rays in a few years

  30. Interesting about the natural grass.

  31. Don’t really get what your saying…why would one guys opinion mean anything? and why would that be the end of the rebuild? And why would Jose be gone?

  32. Somebody should have asked them about signing Manny after AA admitted they didn’t have a “bonafide cleanup hitter.”

    I did like Farrell’s reference to a platoon when talking about the lineup, though, even if it had nothing to do with Lind. That’s a good sign. Both Tampa and Boston will be making good use of platoons this season in their lineups.

  33. “As it stands now, the Yankees, red Sox , Angels & Texans have a chance at either the division or the 2 wildcards each years.  The Jays could pass the Rays in a few years”

    They could trade away Marisnick, Niccolino, Hutchinson, Syndergard, Gose and Darnaud tomorrow if they wanted to and probably get enough in return that they’d be expected to win 90+ games in 2012. 

    I don’t think they should do that, but my point is that with this farm system and young core of this team it’s silly to act with certainty that the next few years are write offs.

  34. Just the fantasy is almost enough to turn me hipster.  lol

  35. That might have been your least annoying post ever, you typically-retarded fucker. Keep it up.

  36. Holy Fuck Rust, his name is Jason Parks not Nostradamus nor Mayan Calendar – HE MAY BE FUCKING WRONG, CHEER THE FUCK UP. Or do you think the Red Sox won the 2011 World Series because everyone thought they would after they traded for Adrian Gonzalez and signed Carl Crawford.

  37. We have to know the “Grass in the Rogers Centre” is a bit of a smoke screen.

    There are so many reasons it won’t happen – the cost to actually properly drain the floor, installing lighting which will actually allow the grass to grow – giving up all sorts of ancilliary revenue opportunities because grass is installed (no more monster truck rallies, U2 concerts, motocross, Argo games, etc.)…

  38. If the Jays realize that they will not be able to make the playoffs over the next 3 years , & Bautista realizes the same thing, & Bautista decides he wants to be on a playoff team, then A & Bautista will agre to trade him for some shiny new prospects in 2013.This will allow AA to delay the rebuilding a few more years until AA’s prospects can contribute to the Jays.

  39. I think AA will see what the team can do on the field in 2012 & re evaluate the situation. Anything under 85 wins means that they should try to rebuild again without Bautista. It seems that Beeston will veto any deals for top free agents. Luckily for Beeston several free agents won’t come to Toronto even if AA offers them more money. Beeston looked like he wanted to be at a  proctologist appt rather than face the fans. He was antagonist tonight againt fans who wanted a Fast forward to success.

  40. Beeston is horrible at managing expectations. He expects to make the playoffs 2 or 3 years out of the next 5? Why would he say that?

  41. Not trying to be a dick, but I’ll take the opinion of Beeston (or the engineering types he employs) on the possibility of natural grass in there over yours.

  42. Also, if Beeston threw the natural grass thing out there without believing there’s a chance it could happen – after all the shit this offseason about misleading the fans on high payroll etc – then he is nuts.

  43. Why not? If you add high ceiling guys like Gose and d’Arnaud and whatever else you get via trade and free agency next year then that’s perfectly reasonable if it comes together. Hopefully Rogers does their bit when asked. A lot will depend on guys like Hutchison, Morrow and Alvarez stepping it up and performing though.

  44. Agreed. Rogers won’t want to lose the evenue from the other events to justify the cost of getting grass for the Jays. Rogers has owned the stadium since 2005. If they wanted grass they would have done it by now.

    Beeston is behaving like a used car salesman.

  45. He shouldn’t be allowed to make any public comments on the Jays. AA & Farrell are far smoother.

  46. Get serious. Don’t you think the grass issue hasn’t been analyzed since 1989? Beeston came up with this idea a few hours before the presentation in order to excite fans. I suspect they will issue a press release in several months indicating the engineers say it isn’t feasible

  47. “Anything under 85 wins means that they should try to rebuild again without Bautista”

    That’s such an arbitrary absolute statement.  

    Imagine the Jays heading into the last 3 games series of the year, sitting on 84 wins..  Is AA going to say “Well guys, if we win at least one of these next 3 games I say we keep Bautista and the status quo.  Hope we don’t get swept though, cause then I think we should trade him and push the timeline to 2016. Remember we agreed on that magic 85 number”

    The only way they should trade Bautista is if he demands it, or if the young major league core of the club (Lawrie, Romero, Morrow, Escobar, Rasmus etc) basically fall to shit, and they feel they have to wait for the next wave of low A prospects to have a chance at the second wild card (which over the last decade, would have taken around 90 wins).

    Odds are, the Jays as is probably win 84/85 games in 2012 and don’t seriously threaten.  But you can’t tell me this club which has won 85 and 81 games over the past two years, which has the #1 farm system, and has a load of players who are in phases of their careers where they theoretically are improving ,doesn’t have a shot to at least come within striking distance of 90 wins (say 85+).  Even less so in 2013.  There’s no need for a step back/reload.

    This new feeling among fans that the next few seasons are pointless now because the Jays didn’t sign Fielder or Darvish is nuts.  They might trade Hutchinson, Gose and Syndergard for Garza in Spring Training for all we know.  Wait and see.

  48. “Beeston came up with this idea a few hours before the presentation in order to excite fans”

    Thanks for sharing this huge scoop with everyone!  Wow, how did you get this inside information?

  49. Look – I have no idea if grass is possible or not.  But I’m not going to pretend I have enough knowledge about the logistics of it to give a definite answer.  I also don’t think that just because the Jays had an offseason where fans feel mislead, that somehow Beeston is some Machiavelli who is just outright lying to the fans about the fact that they’re looking into it.  Really, that’s silly.

  50. “why the fuck can we never watch Jays batting practice?”

    I’m sorry, but I’ve seen the Jays do batting practice many times. Usually with some of them signing autographs at the time (though I haven’t taken part in that bit). I’m sorry if you’ve missed out, but they do it often enough to not really be an issue. I’ve noticed you’ve commented on this a couple of times in the past couple of days, but you’re hitting at a non-issue. Your luck has just been lousy for days when they’ve opted out of BP after the gates opened.

  51. Regarding the grass issue, Mike Wilner’s blog has audio from the post SotF media scrums. Beeston pretty much rules out grass until the RC can be a 100% baseball venue. 

  52. The link for wankers too lazy to find it themselves. 

  53. It comes down to the finances. Why would Rogers put in grass when they can make way more money by simply keeping it as is?

    There’s little reason to believe even half the things Beeston says about anything, we already know this.

  54. Well, I guess we’ll see re grass.  I’m hopeful it’s a genuine consideration, and I think it’d be too dumb a move to intentionally mislead.  But who the hell knows. We’ll see.

  55. LOL that is a fucking ridiculous statement on your behalf. I’ve talked to many people unhappy with the batting practice situation. “batting practice many times”…? No. It may happen from time to time that I have been unlucky to catch, but the NORM is the Jays go first and the gates aren’t open. And stop saying wanker, you live in fucking Canada.

  56. Gose needs a better “hit-tool”?  Perhaps this means his overall batsmanship requires improvement? I do not know this jargon, “hit-tool”.

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