Tag:

Mailbag

Mailbag time.

https://twitter.com/24joliver/statuses/502498586849181696

And Matt asks:

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This is a follow-up to Friday's post about Dominic Smith's power production in Savannah this year.

The quick summary: above-average first basemen hit generally hit for more power in their age 19 seasons than Smith has shown this year with Savannah. Some of Smith's output has to do with Grayson Stadium, but even his road performance is pretty far below the average of the group in terms of key offensive indicators.

So, onto the mailbag:

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To submit questions to our weekly mailbag, use the contact form on the site, or use the twitter-wheel. I also respond to many questions that don't make the site if the answers are short and quick.

? Eric Olesh (@eolesh) April 25, 2014On the disabled list. After leaving his final spring training start on March 27 with pain in his triceps, Mets doctors later diagnosed him with a strained lat. This is now the third year in a row that the 2011 second round pick has missed time with an injury. Mazzoni had?elbow neuritis?last April and arthroscopic surgery on his knee in August 2013. He also missed a start in late July 2012 with a?finger issue.?

Tags: Cory Mazzoni, Dominic Smith, Mailbag, Toby Hyde
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Is Cam Maron a better prospect than Travis d'Arnaud? A recent PECOTA ranking of prospects on Baseball Prospectus thinks so.

Andrew Koo at Baseball Prospectus?revives Nate Silver's old PECOTA Takes on Prospects series. PECOTA's top 100 ranked Maron as the No. 80 prospect. Four spots later, d'Arnaud shows up. Checking in at No. 95? Noah Syndergaard.

Up near the top, PECOTA has Kevin Plawecki at No. 11. Rafael Montero is No. 37 and Steven Matz No. 63.

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Q: Scott writes:

Toby, did Akeel Morris really strike out ALL NINE batters he faced in 3 innings of work the other night? ?Can you make even a brief post on what you saw and how he managed to do that? ?Thanks.

Tags: Akeel Morris, Brandon Nimmo, Jacob deGrom, Mailbag, Toby Hyde
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Steve from Red Hook writes:

Would you trade for Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry? And if so, what would be the most you'd be willing to give up to get him?

Tags: Brooklyn, Mailbag, NBA, Nets, nets, Q&A
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Sean from New Paltz, New York writes: I'm excited that now that the Nets are getting healthy, this is the time where they'll finally turn into the team we expected them to be. What do you think? Are these last two games the real Nets? Or is this just a mirage against weak opponents?

Nets fans are searching for something to be positive about (justifiably so) in this mess of an early season and?the ?win over Boston certainly is a place to start. It was probably the best this team has played all year. With Deron Williams coming back, and Paul Pierce surprising everyone with an early return, it looks like we can finally see what this team is all about. I still need to see Andrei Kirilenko on the floor, but beggars can't be choosers, I suppose.

That said, with all the optimism coming from the D-Will return, I would still pump the brakes a bit and not go too crazy with a single two-game winning streak. ?I want to see them win tonight against a road weary Clippers team that is coming off a game last night in Boston.?If they can play with the same energy and passion as last game tonight and grab another win it could make me start to think that maybe they have found something.

Tags: Brooklyn Nets, deron williams, Mailbag, Nets, nets, paul pierce, Q&A, Brian Erni
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John asks:

Is Gavin Cecchini on the verge of a make or break year as a prospect? He had a solid average in a pitcher friendly NY Penn League, but his power numbers are really lacking. ?A lot of reports I read are down on him, and was just wondering your take Toby. ?Thanks.

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You asked us questions last week, this week we answer.Dom LongoDo u think the Isles stick with the current goalie tandem throughout the season? Or do u think they trade for one (Miller) or call one up? (Nilsson) ThxRight now goaltending is an interesting question. Nabokov had an extremely shaky performance on Tuesday night and it sounded like after the game Capuano was more open to play Poulin. But I don?t think that means that the tandem will really change. Nilsson may get called up if he?s performing really well and Poulin isn?t, but I don?t see the Islanders trading for a goaltender.I'd agree with what Christian said and would further say that trading for Ryan Miller doesn't make sense, unless you know you're re-signing him. He's a pending UFA, so it would be self-defeating to pay for him in trade with the risk of losing him a few months from now. Backing up the Brinks truck in the off-season is likely the smartest move.John from MassapequaWhy does Capuano continue to let PMB take Brock Nelson's line up spot? And then put him on our power play? Is he getting us to the cap floor and that's the reason because aside from that I don't see it.?John, I think Capuano is giving the free agent signings every chance to prove themselves, though from Nelson?s play it?s hard to say that he shouldn?t be in the lineup. But that?s not to say Pierre-Marc Bouchard has played terrible either. And the Isles are over the cap, so playing PMB is not in anyway a cap move.Bouchard had a rough start to the year and deservedly took criticism for that. But it makes no sense to throw a guy off the team after three games. Lately, PMB is turning it around with three points in four games and is second on the team in possession.Derek in London, UKHow many games do you think the Isles will play in NVMC per season after they move to Brooklyn? Is there a chance we could see a significant number of games played at NVMC after a renovation??The Isles will play six games at a renovated Nassau Coliseum. No more than that from what everyone involved has been saying. Unless the team moves back to Long Island, which I DON?T see happening, then they will only play six games there.jon from njAt what point does the organization either 1) promote De Haan to take the place of Hickey/Strait 2) Promote Strome to take the place of Regin/Bouchard 3) Trade some of these chips for an established d-man or goalie?Something has to give, because this defense is horrendous.?De Haan is coming off an injury last season and it seems they?re giving him time to develop in the AHL. With Strome it is the same sort of thing, minus the injury, but the Islanders aren?t trying to rush anyone up into the NHL. I still don?t think De Haan is ready just yet, but Strome will be the first called up if/when things don?t work out with Regin or Bouchard.As for a trade of some sorts, I still don?t see one coming yet. Garth Snow and the rest of the Isles organization is confident in the prospects and pieces they have in place.Unfortunately, the D and goalie issues are ones that could have been solved in the off-season and weren't. That said, the D will get better with prospects in the pipeline but that will still take another year or two. All the guys from the 2012 draft still need some time.Ray CifelliI feel like the isles organization thinks that they are "almost there" after last season. I think they have a good while of development yet to do and as a HUGE fan it is so frustrating seeing 18 and 19 year olds all over the league excelling and we are not playing our youngsters. (sorry) my question is, why are we not playing our young studs?As I said earlier, I think the team is worried about rushing their young players. They don?t want to make the same mistake they made with Josh Bailey, but Brock Nelson and Matt Donovan are both guys who have proven they?re ready for the NHL. They?re getting their chance, and it?s only a matter of time before Ryan Strome is called up from Bridgeport. Management is playing it safe at the moment.Carl from CanadaHow long of a leash does Capuano have this season? & does Ratner have any say in the decision making with Wang. i.e team decisions? As the new landlord you would have to think that you would want the owner to bring a premium product to his arena.I don?t think Capuano really has a leash. Barring some terrible losing streak, his job is safe. As of right now, Ratner has no say in hockey operations. However, considering all the news that has come out about the deal to bring the Islanders to Brooklyn, it?s hard to imagine that Ratner and Barclays Center brass won?t have some say? At the very least you know they?ll want to see some improvements and money invested into the on ice product.Ratner & Co. don't have a say in hockey operations, but with the Barclays taking the brunt of the risk for fluctuations in revenues, that should make them heavily invested in the success of the team. They seem like a very smart bunch and my guess is they have that figured out.RobWhy does Garth Snow refuse to address the 1st line RW for Tavares and lack of a top 4 defenseman? The team is $14 million under the cap. We need a legit top line RW and top 4 dman. This team will not make the playoffs unless Garth addressees these issues!?I agree, defense especially at the moment. The Islanders defense has not been what it has needed to be and during the offseason that was something that needed to be addressed. However I don?t think it is because Snow won?t address those issues, it is that he has faith in the guys he has there.I think Trots said it best; imagine Mike Bossy on Tavares' wing. This needs to be addressed before it's too late.@JimmyShnoogenIf the Islanders were to look to make an in-season trade, which would take priority: A high caliber goal-scorer or a young, reliable goaltender with potential, that will be able to step in for Nabokov if/when he gets burnt out later in the year?My pick would be neither. I?d say the priority would be defense. That has been the Islanders biggest weakness so far. Yes I know Nabokov has had some rough games, especially his last one, but his defense has not given him much help at times. And there are certain defensive guys on the roster that have not played as well as they should be or need to be.Have I mentioned lately I'm concerned about the goaltending? No, because Nabokov had a nice start to the season. Tuesday night was the first real bad game that Nabokov had and the team's offense kept them in it. Kevin Poulin should get a chance, Nabokov is not the long-term solution and the nice start is likely an illusion. This is a situation that needs fixing and a Bernier or a Schneider would be nice right about now but those ships have sailed. Steve HamermanBlown 3rd period leads have always seemed to haunt the Isles for as long as I've been watching them. How and when can they eliminate this problem and take the next step to closing teams out? And not leaving possible points to make the playoffs behind.It?s all a part of that maturation process. The Islanders are still a young team and that will come with time where they fully close out teams. They?ve shown in the past that they can do it, but now it?s doing it on a consistent basis. As guys continue to mature in their game, it will become easier to do.The blown leads are frustrating, but if they can fix that they could be golden. They've been in every single game this year. If they can fix this issue, or the goaltending, or the defense, they should have no problem making the playoffs in what appears to be a very, very soft Metro Division. TomI feel that Strait should be benched or waived and Is there a player that is NHL ready to step in and take over his position from Bridgeport.Aaron Ness or Calvin de Haan may be the best options as far as prospects ready to make the jump. And out of those two, I?d say give Ness the shot. I?m sure I?m in the minority on that opinion, but I still think de Haan could use some more time in the AHL.There's not much of an answer right now in Bridgeport. I've been trying to watch most of their games and De Haan doesn't seem ready, or at least needs to shake off rust (remember Okposo for the first year after his injury?). I don't know that Ness' ceiling is particularly high. The best defensive prospects in the system appear to be Andrey Pedan, Griffin Reinhart and Ryan Pulock. The latter two we definitely won't see this year and Pedan still needs more time, too. There's a lot of defense in the system, but most of it is still a year or more away.DaveyThe Isles seem to play better with Carkner in the line-up, with Strait struggling so much why not try Donovan & Carkner as the 3rd pair?Davey, you?re one of the few fans I?ve ever heard say the team plays better WITH Carkner in the lineup. Considering the Islanders struggles on defense I?d be willing to try the combination, but Carkner hasn?t necessarily been great defensively either.? I would be more inclined to bench Carkner than Strait. I think Carkner has struggled more than Strait so far this season.
Tags: Islanders, mailbag, Kevin Schultz

 

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Matt asks:

I was hoping you could provide us with a post updating some of our top ranked players with injuries. ?Any updated on Mateo, Fulmer? What about Tapia? Is he injured? ?I have not seen any game lines for him.

 Oh, I can. Tapia burned his non-pitching hand, but he returned over the weekend, and lasted only one third of an inning.

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JP writes:

 

Can you give us a little info on Juan Carlos Gamboa? I don't seem to hear much about him, but he's putting up good numbers in Winter Ball. What's his future in the organization look like? ?Thanks!
 

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Kevin asks:

Being that the Mets are so cost conscious, and have young promotable minor leaguers, can you explain how compensation works at the major league level for a promoted minor leaguer or someonoe signed to a minor league contract but has an spring training invite and makes the 25-man roster?
 

Ooh, I do know the answer. Whenever a player is in the big leagues, he will receive a prorated portion of the big league minimum. In 2013, the MLB minimum will be $490,000. When he is in the minors, he receives his minor league rate.

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Kevin Asks:

 

How far out do you see the following Mets pitchers as being Big League rotation ready?

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Alex writes:

I am surprised we have not heard any rumblings about possibly moving Ike Davis to the OF, particularly RF. I understand that he is a very good defensive 1B and that he may not match that defensive value in RF but he did play both positions in college as well as while in the minors, and reports when he was drafted had him throwing 90 off a mound so his arm should work fine there. The reasoning for moving him would be that for the most part, and particularly at this moment in MLB history, it is way easier to acquire around 30 HR at 1B then it is in the OF. Of course, Murphy could then move to 1st if they wanted to add a 2B or SS instead. Not saying this is what should be done but I am surprised I have not heard it as an option at all. - Alex

You haven't heard any rumblings about moving Ike Davis to rightfield because it's a really bad idea. Ike Davis belongs at first. It's really that simple.

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Michael asks:

With the arod situation, could the Yankees now be players for david wright?

Highly unlikely. Lets review the basics.

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John asks:

Hey Toby, I know it\'s a little early, but exciting to think about. ?Any idea who the Mets might look to take in the 2013 draft? A lot of mocks have them looking pitcher at Bobby Wahl. ?You\'re thoughts?
Yali asks:

Does the Mets 11th pick of next years draft get protected since they basically are only drafting 11th because the Pirates were unable to sign the 9th pick of last years draft?
Yali's question first. No, the Mets' 11th overall pick is NOT protected this year. The rule is that the top 10 picks are protected. In 2013, that includes the teams with the nine worst overall records, and the Pirates, who pick up a compensation pick for failing to sign their 2012 first rounder Mark Appel from Stanford. The Mets finished with the 10th worst overall record at 74-88. The 2013 draft order is here at MLB Trade Rumors.

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[tweet https://twitter.com/garik16/status/249173977099014144]

Mets farmhands will put up sweet-looking numbers in Las Vegas. Everyone does. The average hitter will see his numbers rise 25% moving from Buffalo to Vegas. Adjust accordingly. I wonder whether some types of hitters are helped more than others. I have not crunched the numbers, but often extreme environments help or hurt one handed hitters more than others.

As with pitchers however, pay attention to walk and strikeout rates for hitters. One key early question for 2013 will be whether Matt den Dekker can improve on his 6.4 K/BB ratio (90 K/14 BB in 77 games in 2012).

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Ben asks:

Does the Vegas deal change Alderson's and DePodesto's strategy in regards to Wheeler?

 

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Joseph asks:

With the lack outfield prospects in the Mets Farm System, what are your thoughts on Aderlin Rodriguez shifting to left field and provide a possible power outfield bat? Being blocked by David Wright and Ike Davis, this looks like a good fit if he can play the outfield.

I think this is a really bad idea. Aderlin Rodriguez is 20 years old and is currently working at third base for advanced-A St. Lucie.

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Kevin asks:

I saw that?Havens?rode the pine well this past weekend (sarcasm intended). Where is the organizations stance with him?

Since his rough first 30 days after injury return, he seems to hae performed o.k., but he still is in AA and turns 26 this fall.

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Mailbag time!

John asks:

As someone who watches Aderlin Rodriguez's at bats, how lost does he look against lefties? ?He is only hitting .127 against them. ?I'd be interested in your take on his chances of being anything more than a platoon guy or pinch hitter. ?He seems to be making great strides this year, but those splits are pretty serious.

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With Josh Thole headed back to NYC to be evaluated for a concussion, the emails rolled in about the potential replacements on the farm.?Here's the takeaway: there are no good options. Josh Thole is valuable on his own, and the 2012 Mets will dearly miss his production while he's away.

 

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Sun writes:

I love your page. I was wondering if you ever thought about doing a top 10 ranking each week where you could have prospects move up or down depending on how there doing recently or if a new prospect burts onto the scene, like ESPN does with nba rookies or teams each week. I know it may be time intensive but I and probably a lot of other people would look out for each week
 

Sun, I don't have any interest in doing updated rankings on a weekly basis. I just don't think one week of baseball carries that much significance in either the Major or minors. It would be a constant exercise in painful, small sample-size theater. The scouting information does not change that dramatically either. I've never even done an in-season re-ranking of Mets prospects. Perhaps, this year, I'll do a set of shorter rankings on the eve of the June draft.

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Hank writes:

i like jordany i like him alot but what is going to happen with him. id like to see him starting in cf this year. but i realize that probably wont happen but how long until he will be ready. you have seen him alot more then me. how long dose it take for someone to learn a new position and be ready to start at citi. and lastly am i just way off base will he even be the starting CF in buffalo with kirk in right and lowen or baxter in left or will the mets leave him at second what are your thoughts.
First things first. Valdespin will go to AAA Buffalo. Sandy Alderson suggested the other day that he would play multiple positions so lets say he mostly plays second base and centerfield with a little bit of shortstop mixed in. ?And yes, when Valdespin plays center in Buffalo, Kirk Nieuwenhuis will likely move to right.

As for how long it takes a guy to learn a new position, it depends on the player, and on the position. In Valdespin's case, in center, there's really a chance he could be a competent outfielder in relatively short order - say a few months if he really works at it. He's fast underway and has a good first step, two very important attributes for center field. Valdespin has a slight head start because he started taking fly balls in winter ball. Primarily, he'll have to learn how to make reads off the bat. Secondly, he'll need to learn some of the mechanics and the footwork of the longer outfield throwing motion, the right way to make corrections on the move, and scoop grounders.

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This is round two of questions about my recently completed Top 41 Prospects Series.

 

Philip Mohr asks:

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I solicited questions about my recently completed Top 41 Prospects list. This will be the first of a series.

 

Stalkinghorse asked:

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Joe asks:

I'm just doing some free thinking but wouldn't it make sense for the Mets to consider some?position?changes for some of their more prominent minor leaguers?

1. If Fernando Martinez's knees are bad couldn't he be switched to 1B? If he could stay healthy there (and recover his batting stroke) he might be a more valuable trade chip for the Mets.

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Way back in 2011, I suggested ending the year by answering your questions. ?We're still doing it to begin 2012. Also, anytime is a good time to ask questions via email or the contact form.

So, here we go.

Matt Kaufman asks:

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I'm answering questions you asked to finish up the year around here.

JMPavio asks:

Is Fernando Martinez as incapable of playing the outfield as the New York Post reported last week?
 

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Yesterday, I asked what you wanted me to write about. ?So today, I'll answer some questions.

Sandygetsabminussofar asks:

Oakland recently dfa'd powell+miller, as a result of the gonzalez+cahill trades...any chance that the mets are interested in some cheap younger players with professional experience (rather than foolishly giving up something significant for a seth smith)? Also, with the understanding that every GM values every player differently, now that we have seen what gonzalez+latos got back for their teams, if niese could even come close to that, how can the mets not pull the trigger, if they are offered similar value?
 

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From the email and the twitter.

From the email, Kevin asks:

I recently read that Wilmer?Flores?played a few games at 2B in the Caribbean.? I'm curious if this move comes from the direction of the Mets front office, the coaching staff of that particular team, or some combination of both.? Basically I am wondering how winter leagues handle things like this.
Basically, winter league teams play to win their games. ?In this case, manager Don Baylor thought that playing Alberto Gonzalez at shortstop and Wilmer Flores at third most days was the best infield alignment he had. Flores has played 13 games at third this year in the Venezuelan Winter League, two and third and two at second. ?When he played second, Sean Burroughs played third. ?By the way, Burroughs, who was once a very well regarded prospect is 31.

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Mailbag, Bad Idea Trade Division:

From Steve:

If Scooter Gennett were in the organization, would he jump to the front of all second baseman? I'm thinking the Brewers may need a bat to replace fielder, and we have more than enough thirdbase prospects (not to mention blog fav Daniel Murphy). ?Would you listen if the conversation started with David Wright for Scooter Gennett and Jonathan Lucroy?
No. ?Why?

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It's mailbag time. This one was prompted by my post about the implications of age for high school hitter in the MLB draft including Brandon Nimmo and Phillip Evans.

Friend of the blog, and relatively frequent email correspondent ?Peter G. writes:

Toby:

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Dave asks:

You know what happened to pitcher Steve Matz? I know he missed the 2010 season due to TJS, and that he was scheduled to pitch this summer in SS or rookie ball. I can't find any stats on him though, did he miss the 2011 season as well?
Yup, Steven Matz, who had Tommy John Surgery in May of 2010, was scheduled to return during the 2011 season, but had a setback, including elbow soreness, and did not pitch in competitive games in 2011. ?The full recovery time for Tommy John surgery is 12-18 months, and my unscientific observation is that younger pitchers seems to take on the longer side of that period with more side effects in their recovery.

 

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It's been too long since I've done a mailbag around here, so lets take one from my email and one from twitter with a focus on position players.

 

Brian W writes:

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"H.W." practically screams at me:
You have not written anything about Gee over his last two starts against what you would call ?"real" major league lineups! ?The best era logged in first 4 mlb starts by a Mets pitcher since 1995 and you don't have anything to say?? ?Why?? ?You owe this kid an apology for your lack of being a prognosticator!! ?You need to look beyond the stat line. ?Go back and look at the film of him being a pitcher. ?Keeping the mlb bats guessing by not throwing what they would normally look for even in a hitters count. ?Plus, he sets them up. ?He undisputedly (sic), has had successin 4 quality starts at the mlb level. ?So, suck up your pride and tell

everyone you were wrong when you said it would be ugly or you didn't believe it would go well.

Couple things here.

Tags: Analysis, Dillon Gee, Mailbag, Toby Hyde
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It seems like people like using the new "contact" in the upper right on the new site design.? That's cool.? I'm going to be running a multi-part mailbag this week starting with Reese Havens.? I encourage you to use the contact box over yonder.? I try to respond to most email written in coherent English pretty quickly.

Q: Anthony asked about Reese Havenss:

It seems like he was injured a long time ago. Has he been shut down for the

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So I should do more mailbags than? I do, but this one comes at an excellent time to repimp the new design and tackle a question I get a lot.

Stephen Writes:

Hey Toby,

Just started reading the blog, love getting info on how the youngin's are doing. Good writing, very readable format.
I was wondering if you have a mid-season top-10 (or more?) prospects. I read that Puello is climbing your list...now that the trading deadline has come and gone and we, by and large, have all of our minor leaguers still, along with Niese and Davis graduating to the big league club, what does your top prospect list look like now?
Stephen,

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I need to thank everyone who's been emailing questions in the last few weeks since our last mailbag here.? The vast majority of questions I've received have been about Brad Holt, Eddie Kunz and Wilmer Flores, with Holt absorbing the most attention.

Please email me questions here.? Include name and hometown please for mailbags in the future.

Kevin asks:

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I neglected a mailbag last week, but I wanted to answer both of these questions.? We'll have some cool content this week: some interviews and a special guest analysis.? As always, email me here.

Tags: Ike Davis, Mailbag, Reese Havens, Toby Hyde
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This week's mailbag focuses on the secondbase position in the Mets system at the A-ball level.? I run mailbags pretty much whenever I feel like it, but at a minimum, I will aim for at least once weekly this season.? As always, you can use the comments section for questions, or email me directly.? I prefer to use the comment section for quicker responses.....

A few points before we get started about secondbase.? First, secondbase is kind of the hybrid position.? Guys who play second usually end up there for one of the following reasons: they lack the overall athleticism (hands and feet) for SS, they don't have the arm for either position on the left side of the diamond, or they don't have the power to profile as the typical 3B.? While it's easy to write about what secondbasemen are not, they also have to cover a fair amount of range on the infield, possess sure hands and the toughness to hang in at the bag on doubleplays.? Secondly, whereas minor league shortstops who don't become starters can find a home as a 2B or utility player, the same is not the case for 2B who usually lack the versatility to handle other positions capably.

Nate W asks:

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I was impressed by the depth and breadth of the questions I received late last week regarding the Top Prospects Series. I'm going to chop my answers up into a couple of different mailbags, so if your question isn't answered here, be patient over the next few days. If you have other questions, please drop me a line here.

Would Junior Guerra have made your top prospect list before his failed drug test? Does he have any future whatsoever after he returns from his suspension?

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AS writes:

I know this seems like a stupid question but can you just, as a favor, break down the mets minor league system teams. What I mean is order them from Mets down to the lowest level... I don't know what GCL means... I understand the basics of single a, double a, triple a, but I don't know all of the in between levels and lower levels than single A... I didn't know hitting under .200 in any possible league was acceptable.
ED: The last line refers to Javier Rodriguez.
And so, Toby responds:

The Mets farm system consists of the following seven domestic teams, ranked from closest to the big leagues to farthest away:

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Disregarding the Marbury saga, there remains one vacant spot on the roster that Donnie can fill. While Knicks fans (myself included) would love to see Ewing jr. get the shot he rightfully earned, the most pressing need is clearly for a guard. How long does Donnie sit on his hands and when he does finally make a move do you think it'll be to add a big (Ewing jr.) or a guard a la D-league? -Mike K.

It's a great question Mike. I've said for a while that Donnie could be trying to turn Mobley's roster spot, once it's officially available, into a possible two-for-one deal with Steph. Some outlets have picked up on it. It makes total sense. So, if that were the case Ewing would be out for now but he's right on top of the Knicks list of players to add. Ewing is a talent, and no one's been higher on him than this site, except maybe Donnie himself. I think the kid will get a shot, I'm just not as confident as I once was that it's here. He's an NBA player. One thing hasn't changed, Marbury is the first domino. BTW go Danes!

Hey Tommy- Danillo - his best asset is his cockiness - he may look confused sometimes on the court but not scared or nervous!! being confused is only normal for a rookie even more for an international rookie!! his shot is pure as Allan houstons his only setback can be injuries!! his cockiness is what u need to survive in new york. - Pavlos Georgy

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Once again thanks to all those who have taken the time to send me questions, I've tried my best to answer all of them.

So let's take the opportunity, again, to open up the lines of discussion. I really enjoy the level of intelligence that each and every one of you possess, so fire away.

Please send them to theknicksblog@gmail.com, or by simply dropping them in the "contact theknicksblog" bin on the left.

Tags: TKB Mailbag

I was wondering what the roster may look like in 2010.? I am of course in favor of signing LeBron along with Wade or Bosh (I would prefer Wade).? But along with the two signings who else may still be on the roster?? I was thinking it would be nice to surround LeBron with a PG like Nate and a big man who can dominate the boards like D Lee.? An acquisition of a defensive center like a Dalembert type player would also be ideal.? Got any ideas?

Dan Robstad

Thanks Dan,

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So it just came to my attention that the "Contact theknicksblog" section was a complete disaster. I never received any of the comments or emails until today, we had the wrong email address set up. But there was a total of close to 400 and for that I am very humbled.

So thank you.

And please keep them coming. Any older comments or questions that you'd like to ask, feel free.

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Thanks to all who submitted questions. I'll be answering one on today's "KnicksBlog Minute." I may not get a chance to get to them all today, but please keep sending them in. You all are some real savvy fans, and I appreciate that very much.

Okay so let's get started.

What with all the speculation flying around about what the Knicks need to do in order to get under the salary cap to make a run at Lebron James after the 2010 season, it seems like there?s a common misconception that they?re only one bad contract away from being able to do it, when it seems like the truth of the matter is, Walsh will have to shed MULTIPLE bad contracts AND concede letting ?the younger players like Lee, Robinson and Chandler walk if he?s going to be able to lure Lebron to the Garden. Can you guys set the record straight once and for all and give us a few scenarios outlining EXACTLY what needs to be done to sign Lebron outright? - Jesse

Yeah! This is how you start this thing Jesse. That's what I'm talking about, great question. Ok, we've been studying this thing alot and there are certain variables that are undefined, but let's do our best. According to the salary cap, a team has to get under the cap for every dollar they want to spend on a free agent. So in other words, if Lebron wants $25 million the Knicks need to be $25 million under the cap. The cap for this year is 58 million and it's been going up year after year, so let's guess that in 2010 it'll be in the 61 million range. Heading into the 2010 offseason the team will be at 45 million and need to make decisions on Nate and Lee. Let's say Nate gets 5 million per and Lee gets 8 that takes you to 58 million, but if they don't extend Collins you can wipe off his 2.7, so you'd have roughly 6 million to spend. Chandler is safe until 2011-12.? Obviously if you kept Curry and Crawford and moved ZBo's 17, you'd have 23 but that doesn't take into account the draft picks. So in essence what I'm saying is to keep Nate and Lee they have to find a way to trade ZBo or the combination of Curry, Crawford and Jared Jefferies. If the can rid all 4, that's $46 million off the books leaving you with Gallinari (3), Chandler (2), Lee (8?), Nate(5?) and a handful of draft picks (8 mill?)? ( $26 millionish?) with the idea of maybe signing Duhon (6?) So you've got 32 million to sign a few. The question is can they rid, Curry, Crawford, Zbo and Jefferies...Yes, it's complex and why patience is key.
Do you think that Stephon Marbury can re-start his career, after this year when he is with a new team? - Justin M.
Justin, frankly I'm not sure. The thing that I've always said about Steph is that he's never been taught the little things to be a solid role player. He's an awful half court defender. On the ball he can't get over screens, and if he's guarding a two guard he has trouble with size. Defense is more than just effort, and you'd wish that he had been coached at some point during his career. Sure, he can help a really good team like the Spurs, but does he mesh with Parker, Duncan and Manu? Or the Celtics? Do they want to risk their chemistry? I think his best bet is to forget he's Starbury, go to the Spurs if they'll have him, and learn from? Pop.
Which players on the roster do you think figure into the Knicks' plans moving forward?

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