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Ryan Lavarnway


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#1 Bigpupp

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Posted 15 July 2010 - 06:12 PM

C/DH Ryan Lavarnway

Posted Image

Age: 22
Born: August 7, 1987 in Woodland Hills, CA
Height: 6-4
Weight: 225
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Drafted: 6th round, 2008
How Acquired: Draft
College: Yale
High School: El Camino Real (CA)
Signed by: Ray Fagnant
Rule 5 Draft Eligible: 2011-12

SoxProspects Scouting Report
Intelligent catcher with plus power. Makes great contact, outstanding plate discipline. Slightly closed, crouched stance. Attacks mistake pitches. Squares up on the ball very well, power goes to all fields. Catching skills are a bit undeveloped, but he has a soft glove with a decent arm. His release is slow and he's been inconsistent with blocking balls in the dirt. Sturdy frame. That being said, he hasn't worn out his knees too much as he's only been a full time catcher since 2007. May not have the range to play outfield or the agility to play first base. Team leader. Led NCAA in batting average in 2007. In 2008, Lavarnway missed a lot of time due to a wrist injury. Came back in 2009 to lead the organization in home runs.

SoxProspects Page
MiLB Stats Page

Edited by Bigpupp, 16 July 2010 - 11:17 AM.


#2 Bigpupp

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Posted 15 July 2010 - 06:15 PM

I really have no idea how he didn't have a topic already, but I'll start it up.

Lavarnway Promoted to AA


Catcher Ryan Lavarnway and first baseman Jorge Padron are expected to be promoted from High-A Salem to Double-A Portland on Thursday.



Ryan's final stats from Salem
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
SalCAR82304.289.392.487.87966881801463624410

Ryan's defensive stats at Salem
GEPBSBCSCS%
C3737321836%
DH45-----

Edited by Bigpupp, 16 July 2010 - 11:17 AM.


#3 Mugsys Jock


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Posted 15 July 2010 - 10:04 PM

I've always felt his nickname should be "The Project".

Ryan "The Project" Lavarnway.

Anyhow, I'm not usually one to root for Yalies, but he really has taken a step this year. Happy for the promotion.

#4 Shore Thing

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 07:46 AM

Couldn't ask for a much better start. After his first 7 games at Portland, Ryan is at .444/.531/.556 (3 BB and 6 K's). Nice to see.

#5 RoDaddy

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 08:21 AM

Right now, he looks the second coming of a young Jonathan Still... or is it Damian Sapp? But you're right, he is off to a great start, with an OPS now over 1.

#6 Beomoose


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Posted 24 July 2010 - 12:56 PM

Having never seen him in person, I'm curious as to how he looks defensively. He can rip, but are his catching tools developing at an acceptable rate?

#7 AgentOrange

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 01:16 PM

Right now, he looks the second coming of a young Jonathan Still... or is it Damian Sapp? But you're right, he is off to a great start, with an OPS now over 1.


Still's A+ numbers were greatly inflated by playing in Lancaster, and he never really hit in AA.


Having never seen him in person, I'm curious as to how he looks defensively. He can rip, but are his catching tools developing at an acceptable rate?


Soxprospect's Chris Mellen saw him catch on Thursday and had this to say:

The questions come when talking about Lavarnway's defense as a catcher. His skills are average as a whole, showing limited range behind the dish, a slightly below-average arm, and stiff reactions on balls he has to move to. There were times balls popped out of his glove, he stabbed at pitches on the corner, and just looked rough in general behind the plate. Lavarnway did show a quicker release when throwing a runner out and keeping consistent with his technique can help his arm out. With well below-average speed and rigid body actions, it is tough to project him into a potential corner outfield spot or at first base down the line. Most, if not all, projection as to his future defensive position is tied into with how much more improvement he can make catching, where he has made strides since signing with the organization. With his bat's potential, rounding into an average defensive catcher at the major league level would increase the likelihood he could consistently start for a big league team, a likelihood that is a little bit cloudy right now. He is also going to have to shorten his swing to maintain higher contact rates to keep from becoming an "all-or-nothing" hitter against better competition. Lavarnway has tracked pretty quickly through the low minors and shown the advanced hitting skills that reports indicated when he was drafted, and in the process pushed himself up the catching depth chart within the Red Sox system. Dedicated to his craft, followers can expect him to put the time into improving as a receiver, and there is some room for him to grow at the position. Double-A will be a big proving ground for Lavarnway and should show whether he can take a step forward behind the plate to answer the questions surrounding his defense.



The whole thing is worth reading, as Mellen also evaluated Lavarnway's offense.

Edited by AgentOrange, 24 July 2010 - 01:33 PM.


#8 someoneanywhere

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 01:39 PM

I'd second that take, having watched him extensively in Greenville. The key in that report is its emphasis on athletic stiffness. Lavarnway will not impress anyone looking for fluidity. Even his swing is almost robotically stiff in the manner of the classic big-lug slugger. He's a Giambi, I think, in the best case. You play his bat. You can run him out there with a glove every now and then, but at the big-league level you'd rather not do that if you can avoid it.

#9 Bigpupp

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 09:02 PM

As others have stated, Ryan has had quite a good start in AA, and here are the stats...


Ryan's first 10 games at Portland
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PorEAS1038.368.455.447.9028143001412400


#10 Brianish

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 09:59 PM

That's a pretty sexy set of numbers, no matter how you slice it.

Now I just want him to catch well.

Edited by Brianish, 25 July 2010 - 09:59 PM.


#11 Danny_Darwin

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 07:00 PM

I know we don't want to have this discussion quite yet, but is there any reason to think moving him to first base would be a terrible idea? Seems like the bat will play there.

#12 Brianish

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 07:05 PM

May not have the range to play outfield or the agility to play first base.



#13 Bucknahs Bum Ankle


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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:10 AM

Also, he'd lose a ton of value by making a switch to 1B.

From EV's thread: Fun With Davenport Peak Translations

Awesome stuff. What does Lavarnway look like as a 1B/DH?



Catchers moving to 1B lose .034. He's just another guy as a 1B, an elite prospect as a C.

Here's the adjustment table, which is based on the TrA of regular players, not everyone who plays the position:

C +.017
1B -.017
2B +.004
3B -.001
SS +.014
LF -.008
CF +.006
RF -.005
DH -.017



#14 amfox1

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:24 AM

Right now, he looks the second coming of a young Jonathan Still... or is it Damian Sapp? But you're right, he is off to a great start, with an OPS now over 1.


What to look for is how his plate discipline holds up.

Still

2007 K/BB - 103/105 (545 AB+BB) - 80% Greenville/20% Lancaster
2008 K/BB - 111/65 (521 AB+BB) - Lancaster
2009 K/BB - 148/44 (551 AB+BB) - Portland

K/BB ratio went entirely in the wrong direction as he moved up levels.

Lavarnway

2009 K/BB - 113/50 (516 AB+BB) - Greenville
2010 K/BB - 75/50 (395 AB+BB) - 87% Salem/13% Portland

So far, rates are trending in the right direction. Lavarnway appears to be a more advanced bat than Still

#15 Shore Thing

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 12:49 PM

What to look for is how his plate discipline holds up.

Still

2007 K/BB - 103/105 (545 AB+BB) - 80% Greenville/20% Lancaster
2008 K/BB - 111/65 (521 AB+BB) - Lancaster
2009 K/BB - 148/44 (551 AB+BB) - Portland

K/BB ratio went entirely in the wrong direction as he moved up levels.

Lavarnway

2009 K/BB - 113/50 (516 AB+BB) - Greenville
2010 K/BB - 75/50 (395 AB+BB) - 87% Salem/13% Portland

So far, rates are trending in the right direction. Lavarnway appears to be a more advanced bat than Still


I don't like the Still comp. Ryan's overall career minor league numbers are .284/.377/.504 compared to Still's .256/.355/.450 AND he's playing AA at age 22 while Still played AA at 24. Ryan's bat has to be considered much superior.

#16 Quintanariffic

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 04:19 PM

I don't like the Still comp. Ryan's overall career minor league numbers are .284/.377/.504 compared to Still's .256/.355/.450 AND he's playing AA at age 22 while Still played AA at 24. Ryan's bat has to be considered much superior.

Very different amateur pedigree as well. Lavarnway's SLG-alone in his sophomore and junior campaigns at Yale were comparable to Still's entire OPS in the equivalent years. At least from a statistical perspective, the only similarities were that they are both mid-round college picks who had/have a questionable ability to remain at catcher.

#17 rglenmt

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 04:31 PM

If the Red Sox can be accused of this, it seems like with Ryan Lavarnway and to only a slightly lesser extent, with Lars Anderson, the Sox are grooming 2 DHs. Although Lars is still playing 1B on a regular basis with PawSox, Anthony Rizzo is so much better defensively and seemingly more power, Rizzo is likely to bypass Anderson as the Red Sox futre 1B and Lavarnway had been at Salem as the backup catcher to Tim Federowicz and is now with the Sea Dogs, as the backup to Luis Exposito. Unless Dusty Brown, Mark Wagner, Luis Exposito and Tim Federowicz are injured for a lengthy period of time, fans should not expect Lavarnway to get much experience behind the plate. Maybe the Sox will send Lavarnway to the Arizona League in the fall, but that seems unlikely.

#18 Bigpupp

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 10:29 PM

I'll update his stats after his next start, but here is a story about Lavarnway, including him getting a concussion on August 1.

#19 Brianish

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 11:29 PM

If the Red Sox can be accused of this, it seems like with Ryan Lavarnway and to only a slightly lesser extent, with Lars Anderson, the Sox are grooming 2 DHs. Although Lars is still playing 1B on a regular basis with PawSox, Anthony Rizzo is so much better defensively and seemingly more power, Rizzo is likely to bypass Anderson as the Red Sox futre 1B and Lavarnway had been at Salem as the backup catcher to Tim Federowicz and is now with the Sea Dogs, as the backup to Luis Exposito. Unless Dusty Brown, Mark Wagner, Luis Exposito and Tim Federowicz are injured for a lengthy period of time, fans should not expect Lavarnway to get much experience behind the plate. Maybe the Sox will send Lavarnway to the Arizona League in the fall, but that seems unlikely.


I don't recall hearing much about Lars being a notably bad fielder. Below average, maybe, but if we didn't have a slick sonofabitch like Rizzo right behind him, I don't think a lot people would be fretting at the idea of Lars at 1B.

#20 Bigpupp

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Posted 10 August 2010 - 11:53 PM

Seems as though Ryan has hit his first set of troubles in AA. Here are the stats from the last 10 games:

Ryan's Last 10 Games (Jul 26-Aug 10)
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PorEas1040.125.205.300.50545102712400


The HR's are obviously a good thing to see. Everything else, not so much. Hopefully this is a minor bump in the road for Ryan.

#21 pokey_reese


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Posted 27 August 2010 - 09:31 AM

SSS, but Ryan Lavarnway continues to hit well and show great plate discipline despite the jump to AA. If he has an OPS of .850-.900 with around 200 ABs in Portland at the end of the season, could he be in line to leapfrog Exposito in the system? They are the same age, Ryan just went to college so he has less experience in pro ball, and it isn't like there is anyone blocking him in AAA. Looks like this kid could be with the Paw Sox before the ASB next year, which isn't bad for a guy who started in A ball this season.

Of course, it is one thing for the bat to be ready, and another for his catching skills to be there. Still, he can learn those as well at AAA as at AA.

#22 JakeRae


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Posted 28 August 2010 - 06:33 PM

SSS, but Ryan Lavarnway continues to hit well and show great plate discipline despite the jump to AA. If he has an OPS of .850-.900 with around 200 ABs in Portland at the end of the season, could he be in line to leapfrog Exposito in the system? They are the same age, Ryan just went to college so he has less experience in pro ball, and it isn't like there is anyone blocking him in AAA. Looks like this kid could be with the Paw Sox before the ASB next year, which isn't bad for a guy who started in A ball this season.

Of course, it is one thing for the bat to be ready, and another for his catching skills to be there. Still, he can learn those as well at AAA as at AA.

If they think it will take longer than a year for his defense to be ready, there is no reason to rush him to AAA. If he takes 2 more years to be ready defensively, it will be better to have him spend a good chunk of next year in AA to avoid him getting stalled at AAA for too long and getting frustrated.

You are right that he could just as easily work on his defense in AAA. But, that could mean 2+ years in AAA, which could hurt him psychologically and stall his development.

#23 Quintanariffic

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 12:19 AM

If they think it will take longer than a year for his defense to be ready, there is no reason to rush him to AAA. If he takes 2 more years to be ready defensively, it will be better to have him spend a good chunk of next year in AA to avoid him getting stalled at AAA for too long and getting frustrated.

You are right that he could just as easily work on his defense in AAA. But, that could mean 2+ years in AAA, which could hurt him psychologically and stall his development.



Well, he he had 3 BB in 3 PA this evening, bringing his line in Portland to .282/.397/.504 in roughly 155 PA. Unless he completely shits the bed in the last few weeks of the season, I don't see how he isn't the #1 catching prospect in the system come next year. It will be interesting to see if they pair Ryan or Expo with Wagner at Pawtucket next year (presumably Dusty Brown will be elsewhere).

#24 Brianish

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 12:43 AM

I don't think anyone's saying he's not the #1 catching prospect in the system. But there's prospect rank, and there's distance from the big leagues. He's certainly got the best bat (given how little we know about Ibarra), but the work he has to do on defense might mean he takes longer than Exposito. Hell, he might ultimately make it up as a DH/1B/Occasional C in the vein of Mike Napoli.

#25 Beomoose


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Posted 29 August 2010 - 01:05 AM

Why introduce him to a new level of pitching at the same time they're trying to dial up his defense? If they're treating Ryan as a serious catching prospect, I think he'll stay in AA and work towards more time behind the plate.

#26 JakeRae


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Posted 29 August 2010 - 02:47 AM

Why introduce him to a new level of pitching at the same time they're trying to dial up his defense? If they're treating Ryan as a serious catching prospect, I think he'll stay in AA and work towards more time behind the plate.

This is my main argument said much more concisely.

Additionally, Exposito makes much more sense starting the season in AAA because he is actually on the major league depth chart at catcher next year. Lavarnway's defense keeps him off that list. Exposito may or may not be as good a prospect as Lavarnway (I give a slight edge to Ryan) but he is much closer to being MLB-ready due to the fact that he is a well-rounded player. Lavarnway's bat could be special for a catcher, but he's a long ways away from achieving the VMart/Posada level of defensive aptitude that will allow him to use that bat in the majors. Keeping him in AA for a while longer gives him the time he needs to, hopefully, get there.

#27 Cuzittt


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Posted 29 August 2010 - 06:32 AM

SSS, but Ryan Lavarnway continues to hit well and show great plate discipline despite the jump to AA. If he has an OPS of .850-.900 with around 200 ABs in Portland at the end of the season, could he be in line to leapfrog Exposito in the system? They are the same age, Ryan just went to college so he has less experience in pro ball, and it isn't like there is anyone blocking him in AAA. Looks like this kid could be with the Paw Sox before the ASB next year, which isn't bad for a guy who started in A ball this season.


Leapfrog Exposito as a DH prospect? Sure. As a catching prospect? I don't see it. He can't leapfrog anyone as a catching prospect until he actually plays more than half of his total games played at the position. According to B-R... at Portland he has seen 13 games behind the plate with 22 at DH. I assume this does not take last nights game into account (another DH appearance). He also saw more time at DH than at Catcher at Salem.

Exposito is still the number 1 catching prospect in the season. The bigger question is how close is Lavarnway to Anderson as a DH prospect.

#28 Shore Thing

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Posted 02 September 2010 - 09:58 AM

The bigger question is how close is Lavarnway to Anderson as a DH prospect.


He certainly seems to offer more than Lars.





Ryan Stats from Portland
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PorEAS39140.293.408.529.937244190833372500


#29 judyb

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Posted 02 September 2010 - 10:16 AM

He certainly seems to offer more than Lars.





Ryan Stats from Portland
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PorEAS39140.293.408.529.937244190833372500

That actually looks pretty similar to Anderson's first 41 games in AA 2 years ago.

41 G, 133 AB, 163 PA, .316/.436/.526, 27 R, 42 H, 13 2B, 5 HR, 30 RBI, 43 SO, 29 BB

Edited by judyb, 02 September 2010 - 10:23 AM.


#30 Shore Thing

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Posted 02 September 2010 - 01:58 PM

That actually looks pretty similar to Anderson's first 41 games in AA 2 years ago.

41 G, 133 AB, 163 PA, .316/.436/.526, 27 R, 42 H, 13 2B, 5 HR, 30 RBI, 43 SO, 29 BB

Unfortunately, Lars has also had periods of massive suck. His AA and AAA overall numbers:

AA - 177G, 642 AB, 746 PA, .262/.359/.414, 19 HR, 173 SO, 99 BB
AAA - 110G, 396 AB, 449 PA, .265/.345/.434, 10 HR, 105 SO, 44 BB

Pretty pedestrian. Maybe he's just a .780 OPS guy? I don't see him ever developing into a DH for the Sox.

If a player with questionable defensive skills were to put up numbers like this, then I'd be optimistic:

AAA (age 20) - 119G, 434 AB, 485 PA, .288/.355/.505, 19 HR, 87 SO, 46 BB (2010 season)

#31 IKONOS

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Posted 03 September 2010 - 12:15 AM

Unfortunately, Lars has also had periods of massive suck. His AA and AAA overall numbers:

AA - 177G, 642 AB, 746 PA, .262/.359/.414, 19 HR, 173 SO, 99 BB
AAA - 110G, 396 AB, 449 PA, .265/.345/.434, 10 HR, 105 SO, 44 BB

Pretty pedestrian. Maybe he's just a .780 OPS guy? I don't see him ever developing into a DH for the Sox.

If a player with questionable defensive skills were to put up numbers like this, then I'd be optimistic:

AAA (age 20) - 119G, 434 AB, 485 PA, .288/.355/.505, 19 HR, 87 SO, 46 BB (2010 season)




I like Lavarnway and like your enthusiasm for him but you are selling Lars short here. I don't disagree that he had an awful 2009 but his 2010 season overall is pretty good. He did very well in AA to start the season and after getting to AAA he had couple of months of adjustment period. After the initial adjustment period he was excellent since the all star break posting a line of .306/.358/.503 good for a 0.861OPS. He still has some development left, but still is young for AAA.

#32 Bigpupp

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Posted 10 September 2010 - 11:37 AM

Ryan had quite the year in Portland after all. Almost everything was right in line with the season he put up in A ball.

Ryan's final stats from Portland
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
POREAS44158.285.395.494.888254590839422600


Ryan's final stats from 2010
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
SAL-PORCAR-EAS126462.288.393.489.88291133270221021047010


#33 Bigpupp

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 12:49 PM

Ryan will be participating in the 2010 Arizona Fall League.

#34 Bigpupp

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 12:50 PM

Ryan racked up quite a few awards this season. For the second straight year he was named Soxprospects.com Offensive Player of the Year, Offensive Co-Player of the Year by ESPN Boston and was also named to the Soxprospects All-Star Team.

I didn't adopt Ryan until after these awards, but I'll go ahead and mention them now: Ryan was also named Player of the Week for April 12-18 and August 23-29 and named Player of the Month for April and June.

#35 ForceAtHome

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 03:40 PM

Regarding the Lars Anderson/Ryan Lavarnway debate, it's worth noting that Anderson is actually younger than Lavarnway despite being in the system for a couple years longer.

Although Lars only picked up 71 PA in Double-A this year (due to dominating the competition), he put up slash stats of.355/.408/.677/1.086 at a younger age than Lavarnway. I would still prefer Lars as a pure DH prospect. I agree that he's being sold short here in this discussion. Yes, his stock has fallen, but it's fallen from much higher than anywhere Lavarnway has ever sniffed (and in my opinion, remains higher).

#36 rglenmt

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 11:15 AM

It seems like the Managers at Salem have been inclined to have Federowicz do most of the catching there and Lavarnway DH and at Portland have Luis Exposito do most of the catching and again Lavarnway be the DH. It strikes me the Red Sox need to extensively evaluate Lavarnway duting his catching training in Arizona this Fall and make a decision regarding a position. Either Ryan Lavarnway should be a catcher, a 1B or a DH, but he needs to get a lot of training at C or 1B which, to date, it seems like he has not had.

#37 Bigpupp

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Posted 29 October 2010 - 07:08 PM

Ryan's First 10 games in the AFL
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PEJAFL1038.289.417.421.83861120177900


#38 doctorogres

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 12:46 PM

The continued production is great, but, as always, has anyone gotten a chance to see his catching?

#39 doctorogres

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Posted 02 November 2010 - 02:22 PM

Lavarnway is hitting .267 with a .414 OBP and .378 slugging mark while catching for the Javelinas. Lavarnway enjoyed a strong second pro season in the Sox minor league system, hitting .288/.393/.489/.882 with 22 homers and 102 RBI while splitting the season between High-A Salem and Double-A Portland. The Sox sent him to the AFL in large part because they wanted him to get more work behind the plate, following a season when he split catching duties for most of the year with teammates Tim Federowicz (in Salem) and Luis Exposito (in Portland).




Source: http://www.weei.com/...g-stars-arizona

Also interesting (and unrelated):

Iglesias is the youngest position player named to the Rising Stars Game, and the second youngest player overall, behind only 19-year-old Yankees pitching prospect Manny Banuelos.


It doesn't look like anyone's actually adopted Jose (?!), but I unfortunately don't have time to get the ball rolling on that right now.


#40 Bigpupp

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Posted 28 November 2010 - 04:27 PM

Thought I would update this to show Ryan's final stats from the AFL
Ryan's stats from the AFL
TeamLeagueGABAVGOBPSLGOPSRH2B3BHRRBISOBBSBCS
PEJAFL2182.268.380.415.795152230312161600


#41 The Mainahh

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 11:12 PM

Any ideas whether he will start at Portland next year or make the move up to Pawtucket? Does he get stuck in Portland due to the 1b/C combo of Lars and Luis in RI?

#42 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 02 December 2010 - 03:21 AM

Any ideas whether he will start at Portland next year or make the move up to Pawtucket? Does he get stuck in Portland due to the 1b/C combo of Lars and Luis in RI?


I don't think first base is really a consideration for Lavarnway. SoxProspects projects him to start at Portland which makes sense given he played just 44 games there last year and only 16 at catcher. Federowicz hasn't hit a lick over low-A so Lavarnway should get plenty of reps to hone his catching skills. For the time being it's not so much what level he's at as how he looks behind the plate.

#43 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 20 February 2011 - 05:36 PM

Lavarnway's gotten some nice mentions of his power at the plate and some very complimentary words about his work ethic behind the plate from Gammons on NESN this weekend.

#44 Clears Cleaver


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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:32 PM

Keith Law chimes in onLav:

Can't catch. Bat only. RT @carts13: @keithlaw any chance Lavarnaway can make it to the majors as catcher or is he purely a bat?

#45 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:50 PM

Jeez, the guy's only been catching a couple years.

Retrotweet from June 1948

KLaw-1
This Berra kid can't catch and he sure is ugly. How do we have these great phones but only clunky b/w Philcos?

#46 SoxScout


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Posted 09 March 2011 - 09:09 PM

Law said the same thing after watching him in the AFL

2. Talked at length about watching Lavarnway in the AFL, said while the Red Sox FO might be completely true saying he got much much better behind the plate this year, there is no way he catches in the majors. Also said doubtful he could play 1st base, and bat isn't good enough to DH. His arm is average and he is just slow behind the plate, saying he is big and in good shape, just has no twitch in anything he does and that won't develop.

http://sonsofsamhorn.net/topic/61461-alex-speiers-minor-details-podcast/page__view__findpost__p__3257997

#47 SumnerH


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Posted 09 March 2011 - 11:22 PM

Law said the same thing after watching him in the AFL

http://sonsofsamhorn...ost__p__3257997

This is not meant as snark; I don't follow people who scout the minors enough to know their records:

As a casual observer, pretty much the only other minor league commentary I know from Keith Law is him declaring that Youkilis was a borderliner who might make a decent bench player, and that Pedroia would never stick in the major leagues. Those are obviously huge whiffs. Does he have a record of good scouting calls that makes him worth listening to wrt minor league scouting?

#48 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 09 March 2011 - 11:34 PM

This is not meant as snark; I don't follow people who scout the minors enough to know their records:

As a casual observer, pretty much the only other minor league commentary I know from Keith Law is him declaring that Youkilis was a borderliner who might make a decent bench player, and that Pedroia would never stick in the major leagues. Those are obviously huge whiffs. Does he have a record of good scouting calls that makes him worth listening to wrt minor league scouting?


Looking back through the Clay Buchholz prospect thread, Law said in spring 2007 that he had an average fastball, but also said in November of 2007 that he had the best changeup in baseball. I'm sure he's a mixed bag like every other scout who hits on some and misses on others.

#49 doctorogres

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 03:33 PM

Lengthy prospect preview up on SoxProspects. They're pretty positive on his development over last year. I think the real question is regarding his ceiling-- will he be able to keep on improving and progressing with his defense at a good rate, or is he reaching the limits of his abilities?

Ryan Lavarnway
Position: Catcher
2010 Team: Portland Sea Dogs
2011 Projected Team: Portland Sea Dogs
Opening Day Age: 23

Strengths: Advanced offensively, Lavarnway has emerged as one of the top hitting prospects within the Red Sox organization, showing the knack for being able to make consistent hard contact at every stop thus far in his career. Hitting out of a closed and crouched stance, he attacks pitches with high confidence due to his honed understanding of the strike zone and patient approach when working counts. With a shorter swing, Lavarnway generates the type of batspeed able to handle high velocity offerings and is extremely dangerous when able to extend on fastballs out over the plate, often driving them with authority up the middle and to the opposite field. An early need for him when entering the system, he’s been able to close up his hole on the inner third of the plate and turn on pitches with much more frequency to enhance his pull power. Possessing exceptional strength and fluidity with using his lower body to generate power, Lavarnway profiles to hit for plus power as he continues to put the finishing touches on his overall game within the upper levels of the minors. Showing the ability to shorten his swing down and not try to do too much when hitting with two strikes, he’s been able to adjust well to the more advanced pitching he has seen since entering Double-A. A tireless worker and dedicated to improving his craft, Lavarnway has developed the reputation as a player who is committed to putting the work in to push himself to the highest level and get every ounce out of his talent.

Development Needs: While showing great strides with improving his defensive game behind the dish, Lavarnway still has a lot of work to go in rounding out towards an average defensive catcher down the line. On the stiff and rigid side, he’s not overly smooth when going after balls and shows limited range from side to side. His margin of error with handling pitchers is reduced and due to his overall inexperience catching his reactions are still behind the curve. With an average arm, he’s very dependent on his throwing mechanics, which has been an area he has made the most improvement with since signing with the organization. Presently, Lavarnway’s ultimate defensive ceiling as a catcher is around an average defender at the major league level and he’ll need to make a strong push to fulfill that projection in the next couple of seasons. Much of whether Lavarnway can crack a lineup as a full-time starter rests in how much more defensive progression he can make and show he can overcome his limitations behind the plate. Possessing excellent pitch recognition, his finishing work offensively lies with improving how he handles off-speed pitches and lying off advanced breaking balls that sweep down and across the plate. Further work with tightening up against those offerings should allow Lavarnway to produce enough contact and make him that much tougher for opposing pitchers to work against.

2011 Outlook: A non-roster invitee in Spring Training with the big league team, Lavarnway’s main focus in the spring will be centered on his continued work to improve defensively. Once returning to minor league camp, an assignment back with Portland looks likely to allow him to continue polishing his overall game and prove that he’s completely mastered the level. After showing that he was very comfortable in the Eastern League in 2010, Lavarnway should pick up where he left off and produce very strong offensive numbers as the season gets going. Added consistency and limiting his streakiness will be an excellent sign that he is making progress with putting the final touches on his offensive package. With everything going as planned, Lavarnway has a high chance to begin contending for a promotion to the Triple-A as the summer starts to heat up. At some point this season, it will be tough to hold his bat back and he’ll need the test against International League pitching to continue pushing his offensive skills. Whether his defensive skills are ready remains a big question, but an assignment with Pawtucket during the season is a good tell that they have been progressing. 2011 should prove to be an intriguing season to follow Lavarnway and if the trends remain in the same direction, he can show that he's not too far off in the horizon from helping the major league team in some capacity as early as this season.



#50 jsinger121


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Posted 20 March 2011 - 12:48 AM

He took James Shields deep on Friday at the minor league complex in the AAA game.

Edited by jsinger121, 20 March 2011 - 12:49 AM.