Notable Quotables — Thoughts on the Top 100: 41-50
By Jake Seiner / MiLB.com
The Minor League season has come and gone, and sadly, that means Notable Quotables will be heading into hibernation until the games start up against next spring. We’ll still have plenty of regular content, both here on the blog and over at MiLB.com, but to celebrate the end of the 2013 season and the temporary end of this column, we’re going to bring you a “Best Of” from this summer featuring each of MLB.com’s Top 100 prospects.
Below, you’ll find prospects 41-50 (also see: 51-60, 61-70, 71-80, 81-90, 91-100). And over the coming weeks, we’ll bring you more thoughts and reflections from and about the best prospects in the game.
A quick note: Though we managed to feature just about every Top 100 prospect this season, there are a few who evaded our eyes/tape recorders for one reason or another. In that case, rather than leave you hanging, we’re going to drop in one fun fact or statistical quirk of note that hopefully reveals a little something about the player.
41. Bubba Starling, OF, Kansas City Royals –
Starling reviewing his disappointing first half in June:
“My average has not been the best. … Part of me thinks I’ve been late and that I’ve not been getting my foot down. Early in the season, I was too late and I was trying to do too much. I just tried to slow things down.
“I was not seeing the ball well. I just need to be consistent at the plate and get my pitch and put a good swing on it. I have to stay back on the ball. When I’m late, I try to hurry up and that’s when I’m early.”
42. Jesse Biddle, LHP, Philadelphia Phillies –
Reading pitching coach David Lundquist on Biddle’s 16-strikeout performance in April:
“Tonight what I saw was maybe as dominant a start as I’ve seen in my career as a coach. … I mean, when you’re talking command-wise and his overall stuff, that’s probably as good as you’re ever going to see at this or any level of the game.
“He’s a one-of-a-kind kid. … He’s fun to be around and fun to work with all the same.”
43. Kyle Crick, RHP, San Francisco Giants –
Crick on his approach and improvements made in 2013:
“Lately, my curve is working well, but I usually go with whatever feels best before the game and what is working in the game. … I’m learning a lot more about pitching and how to get people out, instead of just throwing the ball. I’m more relaxed, and when I am behind in the count, I can throw a strike and get back into the counts.”
44. Joc Pederson, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers –
Chattanooga manager Jody Reed on Pederson’s intuition:
“He has a feel for the game that is rarely seen at that age. … He has incredible instincts. I played against Ken Griffey Jr. when he first came up, and he reminds me a little of Junior in that way. Only a few players have it. Look at Mike Trout and Bryce Harper today. I’m not comparing Joc to players like that, but he has that special feel for the game and it’s fun to watch.”
45. Jake Marisnick, OF, Miami Marlins –
Marisnick on his relationship with fellow Miami prospect Christian Yelich:
“There is a friendly competition. … We push each other, whether it’s in the weight room, on the field, wherever. I definitely think it is a good thing for both of us.”
46. Allen Webster, RHP, Boston Red Sox –
Opponents hit just .190 against Webster in 21 Triple-A starts this summer, marking the right-hander’s lowest batting average against at any stop in his Minor League career. He also struck out 9.9 batters per nine innings with Pawtucket.
47. Raul Mondesi, SS, Kansas City Royals –
Lexington manager Brian Buchanan on Mondesi’s defensive abilities:
“His instincts for a 17-year-old are incredible. … He’s smooth around shortstop. He can make plays on his backhand or forehand. He can do it all. The biggest thing for a shortstop is instincts, and his body control when he’s diving and making plays — it’s impressive for such a young kid.”
48. Corey Seager, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers –
Dodgers vice president of player development De Jon Watson on Seager’s game:
“We also love the kid’s makeup and his work ethic. He has an unbelievable passion for the game. … We also like the way he plays — he understands the pace of the game. He has an internal clock of the actual flow of the game, which is really nice to see in young players. He has a very advanced approach to hitting. We’re excited to have him in the organization.
“Right now, he’s a shortstop. … We’ll let the game tell us when it’s time for a move. He could stay there. Right now, his first-step quickness is still good and he’s handling the position well. He understands how to play the position. We like what we’re seeing right now at shortstop, and we’re going to leave him there for the time being.”
49. Andrew Heaney, LHP, Miami Marlins –
Heaney on the process of recovering from a lat strain:
“I’ve never had to deal with an injury before. I’ve actually been pretty lucky with health before this. … But after getting back to throwing and lifting, I had to basically simulate Spring Training all over again while the other guys were playing.
“It was a long process, and you kind of get angry being across the street from those guys here in Jupiter, who are playing every night. I’d rehab during the day and then go over and watch from the stands. It’s tough. “
“I’ve gotten the chance to face big league pitchers like [Chris] Capuano [on Friday]. Some guys who have been in this league for a long time, their one goal is to get you out. It’s been good, a really good learning experience here so far.”