This ‘N That

Young-Il Jung is shut down until fall ball due to a strained right forearm.

Before I get back to processing Tempe Angels photos …

I was amused to read in the local papers this morning that Jon Bachanov and Young-Il Jung were injured. No, I wasn’t amused that they’re injured. I was amused that posted this information weeks ago, but only now are the mainstream media getting around to noticing.

I interviewed Bachanov on July 21. You can listen to the interview in the Audio Gallery. Jon told me at the time about his injury.

Young-Il had departed Orem when I was there in early July. Owlz manager Tom Kotchman talked about the injury in an interview on July 9.

I’ve been meaning to mention the red-hot Greg Porter, who’s lit up the PCL since his promotion to Salt Lake in late June. Greg has a 20-game hitting streak at home. Overall, his AVG/OBP/SLG at Salt Lake are .357/.415/.532. In 11 games this month, his numbers are .395/.435/.419. But as I often warn, beware of the Franklin Covey Syndrome, where the 4,500-foot elevation distorts numbers. At home, his numbers are .443/.482/.646. On the road, the line is .267/.349/.413. As I often preach, context is everything.

Kinda disappointed that the Angels didn’t sign Matt Harvey. According to the news stories, the Angels’ position was that their offer was equivalent to mid-first round money and was very generous for a third-rounder. But context matters here too.

First, the only reason Harvey fell to the third round is that he had Scott Boras as an advisor. No one wanted to mess with Boras.

But the main point I wanted to make is that the Angels have set the precedent many times for paying large bonuses to players drafted in lower rounds because they were considered a tough sign.

The Angels selected 1B/3B/RHP Mark Trumbo in the 18th round of the June 2004 draft. He was considered unsignable because he’d committed to USC. But the Angels gave him a reported $1.425 million bonus to sign.

In the June 2006 draft, the Angels selected RHP Jordan Walden in the 12th round as a draft-and-follow. After waiting nearly a year, the Angels signed him for a reported $1 million bonus.

If the difference was indeed only $1 million, and if Harvey was indeed one of the best high school pitching prospects in the nation, then I think the Angels should have made a more attractive offer at the last moment. Perhaps they hoped Harvey would cave just as Jered Weaver did. But the difference was that Weaver shot himself in the foot when he failed to return to Cal State Long Beach for his senior year, leaving him with no choice but to play independent ball or go back into the draft. Harvey had the option to go to the University of North Carolina, although he won’t be eligible again until after his junior year. Harvey can circumvent that restriction by transferring to a junior college, which many players do.

With Bachanov and Jung suffering injuries (hopefully they’re minor), I’d like to see another power arm at the bottom of the system. Harvey would have been that arm. Take those three and add them to Walden, and you have quite a pool of young pitching talent in the pipeline.


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