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What I’d really like to see is a Major Leaguer go to Cuba to play.  Kevin Youkilis grows out his beard another five inches, jumps in a raft and paddles to Havana.  He tears up the Cuban Leagues on a steady diet of fastballs and plantains.  This could end the Cold War for good. (It might already be over.  I’m not good at history.)  Dayan Viciedo is the latest Cuban prospect to defect (actually Aroldis Chapman is the latest; whatevs, it’s an introductory paragraph).  With his defection… (Speaking of which, talk about a word that had nothing going for it.  You don’t want a defect in anything, unless you’re defecting from somewhere… I found that interesting.  Semantics?  Perhaps.) Dayan hit well in spring training and people were saying that the White Sox had done it again with a Cuban prospect, just like Alexei Ramirez; this was before that was an insult.  Early on, Viciedo struggled in the minors (Scouting the Unknown went over Dayan’s minor stats in June), then turned things around a bit as the season progressed.  So can Dayan Viciedo help your fantasy baseball team in 2010?

I’m going to say doubtful with a chance of “not at all.”  As with other recent Cuban raftees, Viciedo likes to swing the bat and doesn’t do much walking.  In his first year of the minors at Double-A, he had a .317 OBP with 89 Ks to 23 walks.  He can probably have success with this approach, because he do what he do.  His line drive percentages went up in the 2nd half of the year, showing he was making better contact.  Really his terrible April brought everything down.  Interesting (to me, at least), in April he had his lowest line drive rate and highest fly ball rate as his numbers suffered.  The Akron Chapter of Speculating on Small Sample Sizes says, maybe he was trying to do too much in his first month of minor league ball.  He’s still (supposedly) only 20 years old.  Another year (or at least a half year) will do him good.  Best case scenario, two to three months in Triple-A and a mid-summer call up.  Worst case scenario, we don’t see him until 2011.  Outside of keepers, I wouldn’t bother with him in your March 2010 drafts.

33 Responses

  1. Stephen says:
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    I am not sold on Dayan Viciedo for anything next year. He isn’t Braun/Longoria/Wieters – not with the bat of glove, not yet at least. Let’s grant that he is truly 20, I don’t see him in the same group as Justin Upton or even Delmon Young of several years ago (maybe he is the next Delmon Young). I don’t know. I should be in bed and write this again later.

  2. big o says:
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    http://www.couchmanagers.com/baseball/

    @Simply Fred:
    you’re a maniac .
    the link (above) might provide a diversion .

    @ ALL
    anyone interested in a SLOW draft …. starting around thanksgiving … ???
    you MIGHT want to get acquainted with couchmanagers pre-season rankings.
    some surprises .

    @ Grey :
    re : dayan
    i drafted this guy last year in one of my keeper leagues .
    i guess , a major portion of his acclimation to life in the states is spent finding host families for each stop along the way , during his minor league developmental stage .
    it’s important to find someone who can cook rice and beans , every day ,
    and walk him around the local wal-mart .
    2011 looks to be his coming out party .

  3. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Stephen: Delmon might not be that far off, which at this point is not a compliment.

    @big o: Ah… The ol’ Wal-Mart’s too big to play baseball the first year in the minor leagues story.

  4. Tony says:
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    @big o: @Simply Fred: ya that formula/equation/math insanity sauce is crazy! My head hurts….

  5. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @big o: Yes, certifiably. Clearly, I needs me some diversions. I feel the love. Thank you! (Grandkids provide a little of that diversion 3 days a week.)

  6. big o says:
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    @Grey:
    2 or 3 years ago , bill “spaceman” lee put together a tour group
    that went to play some exhibition baseball in cuba .
    don’t know how you’d track it down , but it was a fascinating documentary
    that aired on the NESN channel .
    maybe one of your web experts can provide a link ??

  7. Stephen says:
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    @Grey: Considering Delmon Young just turned 24, I wouldn’t write him off. I was reading over at Rotoworld (or their link to their NBC Blogs) that none of the Phillies stud hitters were even called up before they were 25 (this specific article was talking about Brandon Wood and his “few” chances). Hitters take a long time to mature. It isn’t necessarily a negative compliment to say Dayan Viciedo would turn out like Young. However, getting called up and hitting like Young would be. I would wait at least another two years before I would write off Delmon Young and maybe even three. He should have stayed in the minors a little longer than he did to work on his plate discipline and his defense. Gotta give the young stud prospects more than a couple of seasons to prove themselves when you call them up so young.

  8. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @big o: Put Bill Lee in Cuba into Google.

    @Stephen: Yeah, agreed, but that’s why I said at this point it’s not a compliment.

  9. Joe Girardi

    instead of pitching a 4th starter he is pitching all his other starters for the rest of the series on 3 days rest – he is leading 3 – 1 —– He sucks as a manager

  10. Dayan Viciedo – he got off to a slow start because he was catching up on I love Lucy Episodes

  11. Fred Mertz was thinking of drafting him

  12. Steve says:
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    If I’m the Yankees’ 4th or 5th starter, I’m getting pretty sick of running to Wendy’s to get CC another Big Bacon Classic.

  13. royce! says:
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    @Simply Fred: It’s astounding that Arroyo is top 10 on your list and Billingsley is #40. I was really thinking of Bills as a sleeper because of his rough second half, but if his WHIP for his ten best consecutive starts was 1.35, perhaps I need to rethink my position. Not that I’m gonna go draft Arroyo above Johan or Lester, but you know what I mean.

    @everyone: Has anyone seen an infield shift with a speedy runner on first? I know hindsight is 20/20, but that seemed ill-advised.

  14. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Ha!

    @royce!: I’ve seen Hanley stay at short and have to cover third with a runner on, don’t remember if the runner was fast. Probably not very fast.

  15. Steve says:
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    Utley deserves to have someone get HIM some hookers when this is all over.

  16. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Only they can touch his hair.

  17. Steve says:
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    @Grey: If I’m a Philly fan, I’m wanting to touch his hair right now.

    I suspect though that all this is doing, is throw into greater relief their failure to get the job done last night.

    If that makes any sense at all.

    New Zealander’s baseball question of the day – watching Damon come around to score, why don’t baserunners take much tighter line around the bases? Would save distance/time surely? Or is it not woth the slow-down to make sure they run a tight line?

    Or am I the only drop-kick that even cares?

  18. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @royce!: I double-checked the numbers. Ran a different set of 10 for Bills–1.40 WHIP. Arroyo finished the season with 6 games in August and another 6 in September; 1.99 ERA and 1.83 ERA, respectively with 4 wins in 6 starts. You won’t hear me recommending to draft Arroyo over Santana. However, not sure that is a valid comparison. In that CBS mock that I have been following, Arroyo has not been drafted through 19 rounds. Cust Kayin’ that he might be a good value if he falls that far in your draft.

    Grey would be a better resource regarding prospects of Bills returning to form.

  19. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @Simply Fred: Edit: with 4 wins in LAST 6…

  20. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @Tony: The math/formula stuff is just there to comfort you that I worked hard to get as close as possible to how the performances would actually impact a roto team. It’s OK to skip that stuff and just peruse the list to see where your guy(s) stand.

  21. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Hmmm. CC might have to go get his own burgers for the next couple.

  22. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: They try to cut the base so they run the shortest distance. I saw Damon’s but I don’t remember it being an unusually wide turn.

  23. Steve says:
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    @Grey: I guess going wide-ish (to my eyes anyway) around second lets him take a straighter line into third and probably makes up any time lost.

    I’m sure they know what they’re doing ;-)

  24. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: @Steve: Pettite was not exactly Worldseriesish was he?

  25. Steve says:
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    Sorry for repeating myself, but the longer this game goes, the implications of the Phils not having won last night loom larger and larger.

  26. Steve says:
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    @Grey: He can touch MY hair now.

  27. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: You mean Burnett?

    @Steve: Ha! Yeah, the Phils should’ve won it last night, but if they can win this game and steal game six, game seven would be anyone’s. They obviously need to win this one.

  28. Mark says:
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    Viciedo definitely had trouble with his transition to American baseball. That was obvious, as seen by his bad start. One thing that should be noted is his massive power. He is very very very strong and naturally hits the other way. Birmingham is also a big time pitchers’ park, so moving up to AAA Charlotte should not be that tough of a change for a batter. He fielded his position terribly, but has a canon arm. Don’t consider him any kind of MLB factor next year.

  29. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Well, they did it. Just gotta keep doin’ it.

    Now would be a good time for Hamels to find himself.

  30. big o says:
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    are you guys watching the same teams that i’m seeing ?
    cliff lee , ace , …. the only one to take the mound on normal rest …. just got lit up for 5 runs !!!
    if he was racking up fantasy stats for you , you’d be crying in your soup .

    @Steve:
    now would be a good time for hamels to find himself in the peace corps .

    cust keepin’ it real .

  31. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Mark: Thanks for the insight!

    @Steve: It would be a good time, indeed.

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