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February 3, 2012

BaseballInstinct looks at Sox prospect RHP Jeffrey Soptic

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ February 3, 2012 2:30 pm
Tags: , ,

Mike Koepp:

The Stuff

Gas, cheese, heat. These are the best tools in Jeffrey Soptic’s arsenal. He takes advantage of his size and at 6’6″, he should get stronger as he develops. I don’t need to tell you that a guy who can hit a consistent 96 mph throughout an entire inning, let alone an entire start, is rare. If the MLB was full of them it would be a little too rough for the hitters. Soptic’s main issue has been to learn to pitch low in the zone with his fastball. It’s currently very flat despite the plus velocity.

His slider is a pitch that can flash plus, which is promising but he really needs to develop it further and gain more consistency. It would be to his advantage to work on a nasty sinker for those batters sitting on the fastball.

The Mechanics

Jeffrey Soptic has a smooth and easy delivery and uses his size and arm strength to deliver his high 90s, and at times 100 plus, velocity. His mechanics are solid and sound; no need for polishing in that area especially since he profiles so well at the back of the pen.

Soptic pitched 2.2 innings in Bristol after he got drafted in June 2011:

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2011 20 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 0 1 .000 0.00 3 0 1 0 0 1 2.2 2 2 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 14 1.500 6.8 0.0 6.8 6.8 1.00
1 Season 0 1 .000 0.00 3 0 1 0 0 1 2.2 2 2 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 14 1.500 6.8 0.0 6.8 6.8 1.00
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table Generated 2/3/2012.

Here are his stats from Johnson County Community College (Junior College):

Year GP IP R ER Hits SO BB ERA W L
2011 15 56.0 39 28 41 58 31 4.500 7 6
2010 14 44.1 40 25 51 48 41 5.076 5 2

Here’s his signing report (Baseball America report, 3 John Sickels reports, Pine Tar Press report, videos, stats).

January 27, 2012

FutureSox’s 2012 Preseason Top 25 White Sox Prospects

Matt Cassidy:

1. Nestor Molina, RHP     [NEW]
2. Addison Reed, RHP     [Previous Rank: 2nd, no change]
3. Simon Castro, RHP     [NEW]
4. Tyler Saladino, SS     [Previous: 9th, +5]
5. Trayce Thompson, OF     [Previous: 3rd, -2]
6. Jacob Petricka, RHP     [Previous: 4th, -2]
7. Hector Santiago, LHP     [Previous: 16th, +9]
8. Keenyn Walker, OF     [Previous: 7th, -1]
9. Eduardo Escobar, SS     [Previous: 6th, -3]
10. Dylan Axelrod, RHP     [Previous: 19th, +9]
11. Jared Mitchell, OF     [Previous: 5th, -6]
12. Andre Rienzo, RHP     [Previous: 11th, -1]
13. Jhan Marinez, RHP     [NEW]
14. Gregory Infante, RHP     [Previous: 14th, no change]
15. Erik Johnson, RHP     [Previous: 17th, +2]
16. Charlie Leesman, LHP     [Previous: 15th, -1]
17. Pedro Hernandez, LHP     [NEW]
18. Andy Wilkins, 1B     [Previous: 13th, -5]
19. Scott Snodgress, LHP     [Previous: UNR]
20. Brandon Short, OF     [Previous: 12th, -8]
21. Jeff Soptic, RHP     [Previous: UNR]
22. Kevan Smith, C     [Previous: 24th, +2]
23. Ozzie Martinez, SS/2B     [NEW]
24. Ryan Buch, RHP     [Previous: 18th, -6]
25. Michael Blanke, C     [Previous: 32nd*, +7]

January 1, 2012

BaseballInstinct looks at Sox prospects 3B Rangel Ravelo and RHP Jeff Soptic

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ January 1, 2012 8:30 pm
Tags: ,

BaseballInstinct:

356°. Jeff Soptic, RHP White Sox 4/8/1991  - Soptic is a radar gun darling, with the ability to light it up triple digits. A big frame and easy action with that velo is something you can’t teach. He was hit hard in CC though and has to learn to pitch low in the zone. Might be best suited to learn a sinker and develop his slider. Projects as a RP due to well below average secondaries. ETA 2014.

Stats:

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2011 20 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 0 1 .000 0.00 3 0 1 0 0 1 2.2 2 2 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 14 1.500 6.8 0.0 6.8 6.8 1.00
1 Season 0 1 .000 0.00 3 0 1 0 0 1 2.2 2 2 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 14 1.500 6.8 0.0 6.8 6.8 1.00
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table Generated 1/1/2012.

and

339°. Rangel Ravelo, 3B White Sox 4/24/1992 - The 2010 sixth-round selection utilizes a short, compact swing that allowed him to hit for average in both the Rookie-level Appalachian League (.384) and the Low-A South Atlantic League (.317), figures made even more impressive when considering he was just 19 years old.  He’s a good defensive player and while he’s yet to display any power, many believe it will develop.  ETA 2014.

Stats:

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB
2010 18 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 48 187 173 17 44 9 1 1 21 0 2 9 25 .254 .291 .335 .626 58 7 0 5 0 0
2011 19 2 Teams 2 Lgs A-Rk CHW 63 252 234 21 79 16 1 0 34 2 1 14 31 .338 .381 .415 .795 97 2 3 0 1 0
2011 19 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 20 78 73 10 28 7 1 0 13 2 0 2 12 .384 .410 .507 .917 37 2 2 0 1 0
2011 19 Kannapolis SALL A CHW 43 174 161 11 51 9 0 0 21 0 1 12 19 .317 .368 .373 .740 60 0 1 0 0 0
2 Seasons 111 439 407 38 123 25 2 1 55 2 3 23 56 .302 .343 .381 .724 155 9 3 5 1 0
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table Generated 1/1/2012.

December 29, 2011

John Sickels’ Top 20 White Sox prospects for 2012

John Sickels:

1) Nestor Molina, RHP, Grade B+: Acquired from the Blue Jays for Sergio Santos, and immediately became Chicago’s first or second-best prospect. I think he can remain a starter. Molina was a big topic of discussion earlier this month.

2) Addison Reed, RHP, Grade B+: The best closer prospect in baseball thanks to superior command of 93-97 MPH fastball and devastating slider. You can make a case to rank him ahead of Molina, if you think Molina will be a reliever.

3) Tyler Saladino, SS, Grade C+: 2010 seventh round pick out of Oral Roberts developed from draft sleeper into solid prospect. Good power for a middle infielder, and has some idea about the strike zone, scouts like his work ethic. Main issue now is if he can stick at shortstop, and I think he has a decent chance to do so.

4) Trayce Thompson, OF, Grade C+: Highest-ceiling bat in system, tapping into his power now and making good progress on defense. Kills lefties but has serious contact problems against right-handed pitching. Struck out 172 times while repeating Low-A. Has the tools to be a star slugger but also carries a high risk of failure.

5) Hector Santiago, LHP, Grade C+: Came out of nowhere to reach the majors (briefly) in 2011 thanks to development of a new screwball to go with 90-95 MPH fastball. Third pitch still needs work and it is unclear if he starts or relieves in the long run, although recent rumors indicate the Sox will continue to start him. Projects as number three/four starter if third pitch develops, or a power relief arm.

The best closer prospect in baseball” comment helps explain Sergio Santos’ trade.

December 16, 2011

Fangraphs’ Top 15 2012 White Sox prospects

Marc Hulet:

2. Nestor Molina, RHP

BORN: Jan. 9, 1989
EXPERIENCE: 5 seasons
ACQUIRED: 2006 non-drafted free agent (Toronto)
2010-11 TOP 10 RANKING:
Off

SCOUTING REPORT: I came very close to ranking Molina No. 1 overall in the White Sox system. As a Jay, he would have ranked in the six to eight range – which tells you a little bit about the depth of the two systems. Some online publications have referred to Molina as a “control pitcher” which has a negative connotation and implies that his stuff is below average. While the Venezuelan has plus control, his stuff is at least average – if not better. He has an 87-93 mph fastball and a potentially plus splitter that is his out-pitch. He also has a decent slider.

YEAR IN REVIEW: When his breaking ball improved to the point where the Jays organization felt it could be at least MLB average, Molina was moved into the starting rotation for good in 2011. He had a breakout season and reached double-A. The 22-year-old hurler spent the majority of the season in high-A where he posted a 2.45 FIP (2.58 ERA) in 108.1 innings. He showed his outstanding control by posting a walk rate of 1.16 BB/9. Molina also sent a large number of batters back to the dugout shaking their heads (9.55 K/9).

YEAR AHEAD: Molina received five late-season starts in double-A and showed that he was far from over-matched: 0.47 FIP, 0.82 BB/9, 13.50 K/9. He probably needs about half a season at double-A before moving up to triple-A and could be ready for the Majors by the end of the season. Chicago tends to be overly aggressive with some of its pitchers so I wouldn’t be shocked to see Molina in triple-A to begin 2012.

CAREER OUTLOOK: Molina has the makings of a No. 3 starter at the MLB level. The big question for him is his durability. Originally an outfielder, he was moved to the bump permanently in 2008 and has pitched more than 100 innings just once (2011). There is also some concern over his delivery and that, unless it gets smoothed out, he’ll be a high-leverage reliever at the MLB level.

For the other prospects hit the link.

December 14, 2011

BaseballInstinct’s 2012 Top 10 White Sox prospects

George Utter:

1. Nestor Molina, RHP 01/09/1989 H: 6’1” W: 180 – (Nathaniel’s take) Nestor Molina had a breakout season in 2011, posting unbelievable strikeout-to-walk ratios at both High-A Dunedin (115/14 in 108 1/3 IP) and Double-A New Hampshire (33/2 in 22 IP). Originally a third baseman/outfielder, Molina converted to pitching in 2008, and wasn’t even a starting pitcher until this season, so his huge year caught many by surprise. While Molina’s pure “stuff” isn’t quite as good as his numbers suggest, it’s no slouch, either: he works at 89-94 mph and boasts a very good splitter.  Molina will probably start 2012 in either Double-A or Triple-A, but he’s very polished and should end up in Chicago at some point during the season. Don’t be surprised if Chicago initially lets his two pitches work in relief upon his reaching the majors.

Our Video

Our Instinct: We had Molina #3 in our Blue Jays Top 10 and scouted him ourselves.  Tom Belmont took the above video of Molina in July, and it’s been used on several notable sites.  We love what Molina brings to the table, but as Tom said in his Prospect Instinct|Nestor Molina article, he’s not going to be an ace, nor does he have the body to be a workhorse in the middle.  He figures to be a nice fit as a #4, however, as Nathaniel suggested, he could end up in the White Sox bullpen.

Reports for the other prospects (2. Addison Reed, 3. Tyler Saladino, 4. Trayce Thompson, 5. Jeff Soptic, 6. Jacob Petricka, 7. Rangel Ravelo, 8. Kevan Smith, 9. Jared Mitchell, 10. Keenyn Walker, and Dylan Axelrod) at the link.

September 4, 2011

MLB Bonus Baby’s 2011 White Sox draft review

Matt Garrioch:

Erik Johnson was the bulldog ace for California this season. He is 6’2″, 240 and is a workhorse who can run it up to 94 or 95. He has a good change and a nice breaking ball as well. His mechanics are erratic and he isn’t overly athletic but at worst he will be a good set up man. He could be a #3 guy and eat 200 innings if everything works right for him and he can iron out his mechanics a little.

Jeff Soptic, a righty out of Johnson County CC in Kansas, has a rocket for an arm. He can hit triple digits but he is another raw product. He flashes a plus slider and with the velocity he has, he looks like he could be a back of the bullpen kind of guy. He could be a #2 starter if he improves his command and develops an average changeup. …

July 14, 2011

White Sox sign 3rd round draft pick RHP Jeff Soptic

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ July 14, 2011 7:30 pm
Tags: , ,

Gonzales @ CT:

The latest signee is third-round pick Jeff Soptic, a 6-foot-6 pitcher from Johnson County Community College in Kansas. Baseball America is reporting Soptic’s signing bonus at $320,000.

Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Height: 6’06″
Weight: 210
Born: 1991-04-08
Hometown: Leawood, KS
Class:  J2 (2nd year in Junior College)

Scouting reports:

Baseball America:

Few pitchers in this draft can light up a radar gun like Soptic can, but his lack of consistency likely will keep him out of the first couple of rounds. The 6-foot-6, 220-pounder’s arm works easily, as he effortlessly delivers fastballs at 93-96 mph and peaks at 100. Velocity is the one constant with Soptic. His four-seam fastball is fairly straight and gets hit harder than it should. He’ll flash a plus slider at times, but it’s below-average more often than not. His changeup is a distant third pitch. Unless he can significantly improve his control and secondary pitches, Soptic probably will have to settle for being a reliever as a pro. Nevertheless, his arm strength and body are hard to ignore. Drafted in the 43rd round out of high school by the Royals but unselected when he maxed out at 94 mph as a freshman, Soptic will attend Missouri if he doesn’t turn pro.

John Sickels:

This 6-6 right-hander scrapes 100 MPH with his fastball and has a promising slider. Although somewhat unrefined as a pitcher, his upside is huge and his arm strength is as good as anyone else’s in the draft. He could easily go in the supplemental round to a team looking for a high-octane arm to harness.

John Sickels:

Big guy with a mid-90s fastball and good slider. He has a University of Missouri commitment and might end up there if he doesn’t go high enough this year. 4.50 ERA with 58/31 K/BB in 56 innings, 41 hits; command issues are the main problem.

John Sickels:

Clocked as high as 100 MPH, but slider and changeup are inconsistent. Very high upside in his 6-6 frame but needs polish.

Pine Tar Press:

The Royals drafted Soptic 2 years ago in the 43rd round out of Shawnee Mission East High School. The 20 year old RH is still very projectable and was throwing 93 on a very cold baseball day (38 degrees) the day I saw him pitch. His fastball lacked the movement you would want with a power pitcher and he complimented it with a 83-84 mph slider.He did not throw a change the day I saw him but I am told he has a serviceable one.

Here are his Junior College Stats; from NJAAA:

Year GP IP R ER Hits SO BB ERA W L
2011 15 56.0 39 28 41 58 31 4.500 7 6
2010 14 44.1 40 25 51 48 41 5.076 5 2

and from

Year IP AB RS ER BB SO HITS HR HP WP W L S AVG ERA WIN% GP G WHIP CG GS Shut
2011 56.00 256 39 28 31 58 41 5 9 7 6 0 .190 3.50 53.8 15 15 1.29 3 10 0
2010 42.67 230 40 25 41 48 51 3 2 0 5 2 0 .273 4.10 71.4 14 14 2.16 1 13 0

And here’s a 1 and a half minute video of Soptic:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykOFyErInF8

And a 3 and a half minutes video of Soptic:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tUhYieJunk

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