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umphrey

Michael Zunino C SEA

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I'm targeting this guy heavily. Drafted out of college 3rd overall by the Mariners in 2012. He mashed last year between R, A-, and AA. Just needs Smoak or Morales out of the way, I think he gets called up this summer.

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I'm targeting this guy heavily. Drafted out of college 3rd overall by the Mariners in 2012. He mashed last year between R, A-, and AA. Just needs Smoak or Morales out of the way, I think he gets called up this summer.

As of right now, the catchers that are in front of him are Montero and Ronny Paulino. I think you will see Zunino around mid-season. I would have to say someway, somehow Smoak gets traded at some point, which would probably mean someone out of Montero, Morse or Morales is going to move to first base. Zunino is already better defensively than Montero behind the plate, but you will likely see him get more seasoning to start the year.

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Mariners may sign Shoppach as well, but it HIGHLY unlikely he does anything to affect Zunino. If Zunino hits even close to how he hit last year, he'll be up before the all-star break.

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opening day catcher

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The guy has 15 games above A-ball, there's less than 5% he breaks camp with Seattle even if he tears it up in the Spring, they have way too many 1B/DH types to be moving Montero to one of them at the start of the year. Montero will catch 4-5 days a week, while DH'ing 1-2 games with Shoppach behind the plate. Bryce Harper had 143 games at the same levels as Zunino and he couldn't break camp with Washington; Trout had 291 games in the minors and 40 more in the majors and still couldn't make the Angels starting 25-man roster.

June? Maybe. April? Don't bet on it.

Great pick in a Dynasty, solid pick in a Keeper, wasted pick in a Redraft.

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Before people get too crazy about his 2013 prospects, I'd echo a couple of points:

1. Catchers take a TON of time to reach their peak - barring Posey & Piazza, C's have shown they need 2-3 years at the MLB level to reach their ceiling (or close to it). Learning the gamecalling side of things, and working on D, scouting other team's hitters, working with your pitchers - it takes a ton of development - which is at the expense of the bat side of things.

2. SEA likely recognizes they aren't contenders - so getting both an extra year of service time by waiting 3+ weeks is almost a foregone conclusion - especially since they signed some more "established vets" as placeholder C's to help spell Montero (Exhibit A - Shoppach). Frankly, waiting until July to get the Super-2 avoidance is a strong likelihood here, given how high his future ceiling is at.

3. Safeco's walls are being moved in - but again, it's murder on RH power hitters. Keep that in mind.

All of that said, he's clearly a great dynasty prospect. I agree he's got a special skill set - don't know if it's Posey-esque, but it's clearly the best since Wieters (a great case example of how long it takes to develop). If he was going to DH a lot, or play 1B like Montero, and he was in a great home park, I'd say he's a great 2H stash. But in SEA, well, in redrafts I agree it's getting carried away.

Guy's future is very bright, but 2014+ is a much more realistic ETA for FBB impact - I think the ASB 2013 is entirely possible, but keep in mind the issue of C development (Posey is the exception to the rule....Piazza was a legend, but he was also weak D-wise <which in a way, explains partly why he was great out of the gate, too - before Piazza fans shower protests, still a HOF bat, no argument there>...)

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The guy has 15 games above A-ball, there's less than 5% he breaks camp with Seattle even if he tears it up in the Spring, they have way too many 1B/DH types to be moving Montero to one of them at the start of the year. Montero will catch 4-5 days a week, while DH'ing 1-2 games with Shoppach behind the plate. Bryce Harper had 143 games at the same levels as Zunino and he couldn't break camp with Washington; Trout had 291 games in the minors and 40 more in the majors and still couldn't make the Angels starting 25-man roster.

June? Maybe. April? Don't bet on it.

Great pick in a Dynasty, solid pick in a Keeper, wasted pick in a Redraft.

Trout was no where near as polished as Zunino is. But yeah, I fully don't expect him to start the year in the majors but I see a June 1st call up. He does not belong in the minors.

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He will not be starting the season with the big league club. Eric Wedge was asked that question on the radio up here in Seattle last week and his response was not a bats chance in hell.

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The guy has 15 games above A-ball, there's less than 5% he breaks camp with Seattle even if he tears it up in the Spring, they have way too many 1B/DH types to be moving Montero to one of them at the start of the year. Montero will catch 4-5 days a week, while DH'ing 1-2 games with Shoppach behind the plate. Bryce Harper had 143 games at the same levels as Zunino and he couldn't break camp with Washington; Trout had 291 games in the minors and 40 more in the majors and still couldn't make the Angels starting 25-man roster.

June? Maybe. April? Don't bet on it.

Great pick in a Dynasty, solid pick in a Keeper, wasted pick in a Redraft.

Trout was no where near as polished as Zunino is. But yeah, I fully don't expect him to start the year in the majors but I see a June 1st call up. He does not belong in the minors.

With catchers, game-calling and defense count for far more than you are giving credit.

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He might not call a great game but I think he's fantasy relevant as a hitter as long as he's up in the bigs

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Dude is on fire. He's hitting over .500 with 7 of his 8 hits going for extra bases (3 homers, 3 doubles, and a triple). If Montero keeps struggling with the bat, it won't be long till Zunino is called up I'd think.

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MZ having a great 1st week. Say hello to your #5 hitter on June 1st protecting Morse. Mike & Mike, broadcasting live.

Some ?s for dum dum leagues:

When will Yahoo have their write-up on him alerting the masses? April 29th, his #s will cause the hype a month early

Nickname? Baby Z or Mikey Latte (he's here to wake up the lineup)

When to pick him up? May 10th & stash

Fan club? Zunino Banditos

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Another 3 run blast straight away CF. No wind.

It was actually a grand slam.

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Another 3 run blast straight away CF. No wind.

It was actually a grand slam.

My bad. And Im actually at the game haha. Was too late to go back and edit.

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Another 3 run blast straight away CF. No wind.

It was actually a grand slam.

My bad. And Im actually at the game haha. Was too late to go back and edit.

No worries. And I'm totally jealous that you get to see him and the rest of the M's kids in person!

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Over in the MLB forum, Im in the Gattis Fan Club big time. This is my boy in the MiLB forum. Just a few observations from last night. Having watched hundreds of MiLB & college games, however, I realize watching one game of a guy doesn't mean anything.

* Blast was a 1st pitch FB. Towering shot to CF, 405 ft.

* Two "Dave Kingman-like" pop ups, the last one off Okajima. Just missed them. You can always tell power with the height of the popups. No F bombs either, just a frustrated hand clap & sprinted to 2B in case they were dropped.

* Two ugly Ks of curves in the dirt from a LHP. Had to run one out to 1B. Yes, he runs like a C. Not Montero slow though.

**Athleticism: On one of Hultzens Ks, ball bounced off him towards 3B dugout. Sprinted and picked up ball just in front of on deck circle. As he was sliding, he used his shin guards as a sled and then used his right knee to spin on to make the throw to first. Absolute tie, runner safe. Very impressive.

**Posey had to transform his SS body to a C through squats and such. Zunino has the prototypical short, low squat big butt C body. You'd know exactly what position he plays when he got off the bus.

I can't wait for this guy to come up.

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Over in the MLB forum, Im in the Gattis Fan Club big time. This is my boy in the MiLB forum. Just a few observations from last night. Having watched hundreds of MiLB & college games, however, I realize watching one game of a guy doesn't mean anything.

* Blast was a 1st pitch FB. Towering shot to CF, 405 ft.

* Two "Dave Kingman-like" pop ups, the last one off Okajima. Just missed them. You can always tell power with the height of the popups. No F bombs either, just a frustrated hand clap & sprinted to 2B in case they were dropped.

* Two ugly Ks of curves in the dirt from a LHP. Had to run one out to 1B. Yes, he runs like a C. Not Montero slow though.

**Athleticism: On one of Hultzens Ks, ball bounced off him towards 3B dugout. Sprinted and picked up ball just in front of on deck circle. As he was sliding, he used his shin guards as a sled and then used his right knee to spin on to make the throw to first. Absolute tie, runner safe. Very impressive.

**Posey had to transform his SS body to a C through squats and such. Zunino has the prototypical short, low squat big butt C body. You'd know exactly what position he plays when he got off the bus.

I can't wait for this guy to come up.

Love the first hand insight. Thanks bbythepier. This helps all out in getting ahead of the pack.

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Do you guys think there is no chance he is called up before june right?

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Do you guys think there is no chance he is called up before june right?

There's definitely a chance, but Zunino would have to force the Mariners hand. They already have problems on the big league roster, so that part is taken care of. Montero would ideally not be a catcher, and Zunino could move him to 1B/DH. And while Seattle is unlikely to compete in 2013, I don't see them completely writing off the year. So a hot Zunino could force a move. Just not likely to happen this quick. So I wouldn't bank on an early call up.

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He's been sucking for a few games now. He's striking out way too much (13 times in only 40 at bats) with only 3 walks in that period. So after his hot hot start, his average is now down to .250 since he's not making any contact. The M's will do well to leave him down for a couple months to work this out (assuming he can) as he's not going to do anybody any good if he gets called up and can't make enough contact at the big league level.

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He's been sucking for a few games now. He's striking out way too much (13 times in only 40 at bats) with only 3 walks in that period. So after his hot hot start, his average is now down to .250 since he's not making any contact. The M's will do well to leave him down for a couple months to work this out (assuming he can) as he's not going to do anybody any good if he gets called up and can't make enough contact at the big league level.

40 ABs is too small a sample size to glean anything from, good or bad.

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He's been sucking for a few games now. He's striking out way too much (13 times in only 40 at bats) with only 3 walks in that period. So after his hot hot start, his average is now down to .250 since he's not making any contact. The M's will do well to leave him down for a couple months to work this out (assuming he can) as he's not going to do anybody any good if he gets called up and can't make enough contact at the big league level.

40 ABs is too small a sample size to glean anything from, good or bad.

That's not true at all. Contact rates stabilize very quickly for hitters (kind of like strikeout rates for pitchers). The "small sample size" meme running rampant throughout fantasy analyst circles in the last five years or so has really gone too far, in my opinion. There are plenty of things you can ascertain from small samples, and contact rate is one of them. Also, I've read plenty of scouting notes on Zunino so far into the season, and they all agree on the contact issue.

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He's been sucking for a few games now. He's striking out way too much (13 times in only 40 at bats) with only 3 walks in that period. So after his hot hot start, his average is now down to .250 since he's not making any contact. The M's will do well to leave him down for a couple months to work this out (assuming he can) as he's not going to do anybody any good if he gets called up and can't make enough contact at the big league level.

40 ABs is too small a sample size to glean anything from, good or bad.

That's not true at all. Contact rates stabilize very quickly for hitters (kind of like strikeout rates for pitchers). The "small sample size" meme running rampant throughout fantasy analyst circles in the last five years or so has really gone too far, in my opinion. There are plenty of things you can ascertain from small samples, and contact rate is one of them. Also, I've read plenty of scouting notes on Zunino so far into the season, and they all agree on the contact issue.

bodhi is correct... k rates and bb rates stabilize (very quickly) at ~60 ab's and ~120 ab"s, respectively

http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/525600-minutes-how-do-you-measure-a-player-in-a-year/

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