John Sickels had a question and answer session yesterday on his site. 1 question per user so I took my question and asked this:
Doug – So far this season he has sat 90-94 MPH with his FB and hit as high as 97 MPH. If he has turned a corner in terms of his FB after recovering from his shoulder surgery, how legit of a prospect can he become?
Sickels – I have liked Thompson since he was in high school: I Shadow-drafted him for my fake Twins farm system. If he’s fully healthy and can sustain that velocity, he could end up being an impressive pitcher…number 3 starter possibly. That’s a big if and assumes durability which he has not shown to this point. He might end up as a really good short reliever.
I tend to agree with him. Thompson has the chance to be someone real good for the team, but he needs to really show that he can do it for a full season and maintain his stuff throughout. So far, it is looking really good though.
Yesterday the first Baseball America Hot Sheet came out and like I noted, Daryl Thompson was nowhere to be found despite a very impressive line. I talked to him briefly about it and here is what he had to say on Thompson:
We’ll definitely be trying to track down more on Thompson…If he actually hit 97 that would be the best velocity we’ve ever heard about from him pre- or post-surgery. My sense is that with two Reds in the top five it was hard to get a third Red on…but if he keeps it up he’ll be there. Heck, Brandon Waring and even Juan Francisco were candidates as well…Reds have a number of guys producing right now.
I think we will be hearing more about Thompson from around the prospecting world soon enough if he continues.
Homer Bailey is getting some praise from former teammate Chad Moeller. There have been times in the past where Moeller, while a teammate of Bailey would not say a lot about him and C Trent Rosecrans made note that you could tell a lot by what Moeller wouldn’t say. Here is what Moeller had to say in The Citizens Voice about Bailey in his last start:
“I caught him some last year and that’s the best I’ve seen him,” Moeller said. “Command, velocity, his fastball was kind of cutting across the strike zone. That was a different pitcher than I saw last year.”
I watched the game and Moeller is telling the truth. His velocity wasn’t as high as it has been in the past, but still was good as he got up to 96 MPH. Bailey has been working on a cut fastball and a slider along with his mechanics this year, it looks like they are beginning to pay off.