Churchill: Evaluating 101

First off, I am not a scout. To me, the only scouts are those that work for clubs. That doesn’t mean, however, that others outside the game itself aren’t good — sometimes better — at evaluating a player’s present and future skills and abilities. It’s up to you to decide how valuable one’s assessments are. Second, it’s important to remember there is more than one right evaluation of a player, a player’s tools and his future. Sans the ridiculous, that is. Lastly, context is important in the evaluation game. Nothing…

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The Dipoto files

Since taking over the reins of the Seattle Mariners’ baseball operations, GM Jerry Dipoto has maintained a frenetic pace while he reshapes the team’s roster. To date, he’s added 17 new players and shipped one of them – reliever C.J. Riefenhauser – in the deal that sent slugger Mark Trumbo to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for catcher Steve Clevenger. Considering that major league baseball’s Winter Meetings kick-off next week, observers of the Mariners are curious to see if Dipoto will continue to aggressively add new assets to the major…

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Oregon State’s Hendrix One To Watch

There are players that slip through the cracks in the First-Year Players Draft. Those players become much better professionals than any of Major League Baseball’s 30 clubs expected, and for various reasons. Seattle Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager is one recent example. Seager was a third-round pick six years ago, but has been so solid and reached the majors inside of two years, suggesting any Re-Draft would have him going in the top 10. Seager outplayed his profile because he didn’t sit and wait for a break or for someone…

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Rodgers, Tate top draft rankings

The 2015 Major League Baseball amateur draft is now just over one month away. While this year’s class has been recognized as a weaker crop of prospects in recent years, and lacks an elite talent such as a Bryce Harper, there are several noteworthy players projected to go in the first round. The Arizona Diamondbacks hold pick No. 1 and it’s unclear as to who they will be selecting. In part because there is no real consensus top pick, but also due to the fact that their strategy and who in fact is…

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Repositioning Seattle’s future

The 2015 Major League Baseball amateur draft is just three months away and, based on the reader feedback to Jason A. Churchill’s recent “MLB Draft: 2009 ReDraft” article, the annual draft is a passionate subject for many of Seattle’s baseball faithful. One aspect of the draft that will probably garner more attention than necessary will be the positions played by the team’s higher draft choices. For example, if the Mariners drafted a shortstop in the early rounds of the 2015 draft, would fans be in an uproar because the team…

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Aiken to be draft eligible in 2015

After being selected No. 1 overall in the 2014 amateur draft, Brady Aiken thought that he was about to become a member of the Houston Astros organization with a $6.5 million signing bonus. But an abnormality in his elbow showed up during his physical and the two sides wound up not agreeing to terms. It was unclear what the left-hander’s next move would be, but on Thursday we got an answer. According to ESPN’s Keith Law, Aiken will head to Florida and pitch for the postgraduate team at IMG Academy in Bradenton….

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Mariners must nail No. 6 pick

Under GM Jack Zduriencik and scouting director Tom McNamara the Seattle Mariners have drafted well. Among the selections that have made some sort of contributions in the majors include starting third baseman Kyle Seager, regular left fielder Dustin Ackley, starting shortstop Brad Miller (No. 62, 2011) starting catcher Mike Zunino (No. 3, 2012), two frontline starting pitchers in James Paxton (Rd. 4, 2010) and Taijuan Walker (Comp A, No. 43, 2010), with Stefen Romero (Rd. 12, 2010) and Dom Leone (Rd. 16, 2012) also seeing big-league time. Others include Stephen…

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Draft Prospect Watch: Hoffman vs. Fisher

Entering the D-1 season’s second week it seems most of the country came away wanting more from the top prospects. While it’s obviously far too early to make any assessments, the anticipation still runs wild and that’s not bound to change this weekend. The weather generally plays a significant role for half the season, depending on what part of the country your’re in, and it wiped out a lot of what North Carolina State had scheduled. That didn’t stop shortstop Trea Turner from putting up numbers nor southpaw Carlos Rodon…

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