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Wander Franco, SS, TB


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He's playing in the Florida State League.   (Qualified) League leaders in BA: 1. Larnach .316 2. Stevenson .298 3. Sugilio .288 Franco .333   (Qualified) League

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hope it is as they say and no big deal but you  never know:

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Rays shortstop prospect Wander Franco is currently dealing with discomfort in his right bicep.

Franco, 19, is crushing the ball in the Dominican League with a .350/.435/.500 line. The injury does not appear to be serious, and he's considered day-to-day at this point. Unanimously considered the top prospect in baseball, Franco has a chance to make a significant impact as soon as this summer, and is worth keeping an eye on in redrafts. 

Source: Escogido Baseball                Nov 22, 2020, 4:05 PM ET

 

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Man there is so much uncertainty with Franco. Will there be a MiLB this year? If not, will they promote him to the MLB (can't have him wasting another year doing nothing)? If they do have AAA, will he just be forced to stay down the entire season because the Rays are like that (take their time/get more financial control of his prime years)?

I'm now getting conflicting reports that his launch angle could pose a problem and that his power still really needs to develop. So maybe we're looking at 20-25 HRs?

Franco's K% is incredible but other players have done similar things (JoRam for example).  JoRam posted sub-10%  K-rates in the minors too. Even if Franco becomes JoRam, is that really a "generational talent"? Am I underselling Franco? 

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6 hours ago, Ecofolux said:

Man there is so much uncertainty with Franco. Will there be a MiLB this year? If not, will they promote him to the MLB (can't have him wasting another year doing nothing)? If they do have AAA, will he just be forced to stay down the entire season because the Rays are like that (take their time/get more financial control of his prime years)?

I'm now getting conflicting reports that his launch angle could pose a problem and that his power still really needs to develop. So maybe we're looking at 20-25 HRs?

Franco's K% is incredible but other players have done similar things (JoRam for example).  JoRam posted sub-10%  K-rates in the minors too. Even if Franco becomes JoRam, is that really a "generational talent"? Am I underselling Franco? 

The potential delay/cancellation of the MiLB season is something that will affect all prospects negatively if it happens. But like you said, if that happens I can’t see the Rays holding him at an alternate site two years in a row. I think his ETA for ‘21 would depend on if MLB alters anything as far as service time standards go like they did in 2020 or possible injuries to Adames, Lowe, or Diaz.

The talent is there with Franco, and if his bat-to-ball skills are what scouts say they are, launch angle will likely work itself out over time. Juan Soto’s LA last year was 4.6 degrees and Tatis Jr.’s was 8.7 according to Fangraphs, and both had pretty decent years. Don’t get too fixated on one stat. Sometimes launch angles improve as players age/mature too.

As far as him being a ‘generational talent’, I’m bullish. The ‘generational players’ we’ve seen over the last 20 years include Bonds, Miguel Cabrera, Pujols, and Trout. I could see Franco meeting or exceeding numbers that they put up in their best years (though likely with less speed than prime Bonds or Trout). The statistics that get me the most excited about prospects are K/BB ratio, and age and success relative to that of competition. Franco checks both of those boxes. He has dominated every level, while being 3-4 years younger than his peers at each stop, and his K/BB numbers speak for themselves. That says something very positive. 

I believe as long as he’s healthy, Franco will be fine and you might be underselling him a bit. On-base skills like what he appears to have are rare, and set up the potential for a lot of positives.  

If all his skills translate and progress as some think, and assuming health and production of teammates around him, I could see his ceiling being something like 120 runs, 35 home runs, 120 RBIs, 20 steals, .330 BA, and .450 OBP and him being a top 5 player for the next decade. Maybe more, maybe less, projections like this are anyone’s guess.

This could look pretty silly in a couple years, this guys still just 19 after all.

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1 hour ago, alowe1275 said:

If all his skills translate and progress as some think, and assuming health and production of teammates around him, I could see his ceiling being something like 120 runs, 35 home runs, 120 RBIs, 20 steals, .330 BA, and .450 OBP and him being a top 5 player for the next decade. Maybe more, maybe less, projections like this are anyone’s guess.

this is a joke right? its so hard to tell around here.

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7 hours ago, Ecofolux said:

Man there is so much uncertainty with Franco. Will there be a MiLB this year? If not, will they promote him to the MLB (can't have him wasting another year doing nothing)? If they do have AAA, will he just be forced to stay down the entire season because the Rays are like that (take their time/get more financial control of his prime years)?

I'm now getting conflicting reports that his launch angle could pose a problem and that his power still really needs to develop. So maybe we're looking at 20-25 HRs?

Franco's K% is incredible but other players have done similar things (JoRam for example).  JoRam posted sub-10%  K-rates in the minors too. Even if Franco becomes JoRam, is that really a "generational talent"? Am I underselling Franco? 

Would 20-25 homers be a disappointment? I expect many XBH but what about this smallish, possibly injured middle infielder with a level swing plane makes anyone think hes cracking 35 homers? He hit 10 in ~120 A-ball games in 2019

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2 hours ago, Shamrocks said:

this is a joke right? its so hard to tell around here.

Not a joke. Which is why I said ceiling.

2 hours ago, Shamrocks said:

Would 20-25 homers be a disappointment? I expect many XBH but what about this smallish, possibly injured middle infielder with a level swing plane makes anyone think hes cracking 35 homers? He hit 10 in ~120 A-ball games in 2019

Not a disappointment at all in my opinion, considering it would likely come with a good average and obp, steals, and with good counting stats depending on the lineup around him.

Jose Ramirez is 5’9” and has hit up to 39 home runs in a season.

Jose Altuve is 5’6” and has hit up to 31.

Mookie Betts is 5’9” and has also hit up to 31.

Lindor is 5’11” and has hit up to 38

The point being that size doesn’t necessarily correlate to home run/power totals. There have been hitters taller/bigger than all of the players I just mentioned who never came close to those home run numbers. Perceptions of size and how well a swing will translate to the big leagues can lead to errors in judgment. The best players make adjustments throughout their careers to maximize their skillsets, and minor league numbers (particularly homeruns and stolen bases) often can be drastically different in the majors vs the minors. 

Is he injured? I don’t know, but the Rays doctors said there was no structural damage and he has been participating in baseball activities for a while now based on his social media stories and posts, so I would guess he’s doing okay.

I’m betting on the talent shown by Franco thus far and his advanced hitting approach against older competition. I threw out 35 home runs as a ceiling, and I stand by that on a potential best case scenario.

Projecting prospects is extremely difficult because so many things can change/happen. I think we would all agree he seems to have an excellent hit tool and above average power. I’m excited to see how he does.

 

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i just dont think the ceiling of "peak Mookie Betts" is that realistic, maybe thats the point of ceilings. agree plus plus hit tool and plus plus eye, i dont know if i buy plus game power yet but im happy to be proven wrong. he will probably get a few HR every year just for making good contact

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14 hours ago, Shamrocks said:

i just dont think the ceiling of "peak Mookie Betts" is that realistic, maybe thats the point of ceilings. agree plus plus hit tool and plus plus eye, i dont know if i buy plus game power yet but im happy to be proven wrong. he will probably get a few HR every year just for making good contact

 

I don't disagree but the "peak Mookie Betts"  wasn't a realistic outcome for Mookie Betts either.

 

I know prospects live has already moved Kelenic #1 over Wander.

Edited by brockpapersizer
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1 hour ago, brockpapersizer said:

 

I don't disagree but the "peak Mookie Betts"  wasn't a realistic outcome for Mookie Betts either.

 

I know prospects live has already moved Kelenic #1 over Wander.

Gotta admit, that surprised me.

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3 hours ago, dan said:

Gotta admit, that surprised me.

 

I think more than it has to do with Wander it has to do with Kelenic not being a unanimous elite elite prospect by some.  Like a buddy asked me if he should buy a Kelenic card. I know very little about cards. I asked him if the Wander Franco version of that card was ridiculously more expensive than the Kelenic one, he said yes, so I'm like, then yeah maybe it's a buy.

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5 hours ago, brockpapersizer said:

 

I don't disagree but the "peak Mookie Betts"  wasn't a realistic outcome for Mookie Betts either.

 

I know prospects live has already moved Kelenic #1 over Wander.

and I dont understand that, kelenic is pure projection, IMO cant really even claim to be the best SEA prospect

 

This, from BP:

 He’s got a very good chance to be at least a plus hit, plus power player based on his improved bat path and move to the ball. He has an advanced plate approach, and because of that and how quickly he advanced in 2019, we’re confident he’ll hit in the majors, about as confident as we can be for a prospect who hasn’t played in the majors yet and has fewer than 100 plate appearances in the upper minors.

 

"Very good chance to be plus hit plus power" at a corner OF spot over "double plus hit, plus power with BB>K as a middle infielder", i just dont see it. Others are ranking him and/or JuRod over Franco...I think its just lack of movement overall, hard to keep interest in the same lists going forward. Theres no way Wander isnt still the top prospect, or at least he hasnt done anything to lose it

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Just now, Shamrocks said:

and I dont understand that, kelenic is pure projection, IMO cant really even claim to be the best SEA prospect

 

This, from BP:

 He’s got a very good chance to be at least a plus hit, plus power player based on his improved bat path and move to the ball. He has an advanced plate approach, and because of that and how quickly he advanced in 2019, we’re confident he’ll hit in the majors, about as confident as we can be for a prospect who hasn’t played in the majors yet and has fewer than 100 plate appearances in the upper minors.

 

"Very good chance to be plus hit plus power" at a corner OF spot over "double plus hit, plus power with BB>K as a middle infielder", i just dont see it. Others are ranking him and/or JuRod over Franco...I think its just lack of movement overall, hard to keep interest in the same lists going forward. Theres no way Wander isnt still the top prospect, or at least he hasnt done anything to lose it

 

1) BP kinda sucks, maybe they are right here.

 

2) In terms of the SEA prospect, sure I agree he might not be the best one, but if I had a list, you'd get 2 SEA guys in the top 3.  Just because there's another great Seattle dude doesn't mean anything about Kelenic, just means the Mariners have 2 super elite prospects.  You could have said Bo Bichette isnt even the best prospect on his team a couple years ago, and that looks bad right now.

 

3) I like Kelenic a lot.  Not sure I'd have him over Wander, but it would not surprise me at all if Kelenic had a monster year as soon and basically did what Bichette did with maybe less expected steals.  I'll say this and as @fawkes_muldersays "meme me if I'm wrong", but I'd take Kelenic over Franco for 2021 and has a better shot at ROTY.  Career wise, could certainly go either way.  I've fallen a bit out of prospects recently with no season but my 1-2-3 for dynasty is probably Wander-Kelenic-J-Rod

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/30/2021 at 10:30 AM, killa3312 said:

Prospect fatigue with a year off and no minor league season so people nitpick. No way Kelenic is better than Wander as a prospect.

 

This. 100%.

Kelenic is amazing. But Wander is generational.

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This seems so crazy to me, i get Wander Franco has better defensive value, and Eric isn't talking about a fantasy league, but that's a trade I'm making every day.  Soto is a Trout level hitter. I own no shares of Soto and multiple Wander Franco's.

 

 

Fayyaz: Given the choice right now, would you rather have Juan Soto or Wander Franco for six years (i.e. ignoring that Soto has two years on the clock already)? I feel like we forget that Soto debuted at a younger age than Franco is now/will debut

 

 
1:05
Eric A Longenhagen: man, that’s tough. I don’t have a confident off-hand answer for you.
 
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9 hours ago, brockpapersizer said:
This seems so crazy to me, i get Wander Franco has better defensive value, and Eric isn't talking about a fantasy league, but that's a trade I'm making every day.  Soto is a Trout level hitter. I own no shares of Soto and multiple Wander Franco's.

 

 

Fayyaz: Given the choice right now, would you rather have Juan Soto or Wander Franco for six years (i.e. ignoring that Soto has two years on the clock already)? I feel like we forget that Soto debuted at a younger age than Franco is now/will debut

 

 
1:05
Eric A Longenhagen: man, that’s tough. I don’t have a confident off-hand answer for you.
 

I am trading all my Wander shares for any Soto share.

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On 2/17/2021 at 8:40 AM, pan55 said:

Trout is generational, Acuna is generational, Soto is generational. We will see whether Franco is generational, but that is a very high bar.

 

If we're talking about all of those players prospect pedigree, Wander comes out in front by a good margin. He is being dubbed as the greatest prospect ever. 

Obviously those guys have far exceeded their prospect billing (especially Soto) and who knows how Franco will. I am just talking about how they players were viewed prior to playing an MLB game.

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