Jeter Downs

billy ashley

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Man… if he can show this in AAA next season then the farm is truly stocked. Where do guys like Blaze Jordan and Nick Yorke even fit?
I like Downs a lot and think that his slide in the rankings, while justified, have to be tempered by the fact that this was a very strange 24 month period for Downs (and everyone else). 2021 was the first time Downs has s struggled and he was in AAA with almost no AA experience.

He's absolutely a really good prospect, he's just not a top 100 prospect because it's hard to rank him that high after such a putrid season.

Overall, he's never been a loud tools guy. He profiles as a MLB average runner, hitter, fielder, and power hitter. If he does all that at 2B or SS, that's a really solid player.

As for Yorke and Blaze. Yorke is clearly ahead of Downs at this point (he's kind of the opposite Downs, in which he's a stand-out hitter, and questions everywhere else). Yorke will almost certainly be listed in every national top 100 list this off-season. Jordan is super exciting, but pretty far behind Downs, IMO. In that his profile carries a lot more risk (bat first 1B - though he's played 3B so far). He had an encouraging debut, but he's behind Downs (and JImenez. If I wanted to be crazy, I'd argue that I like what I've read of Miguel Bleis above Jordan as well, but that's probably a shade or 9 too aggressive.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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I like Downs a lot and think that his slide in the rankings, while justified, have to be tempered by the fact that this was a very strange 24 month period for Downs (and everyone else). 2021 was the first time Downs has s struggled and he was in AAA with almost no AA experience.

He's absolutely a really good prospect, he's just not a top 100 prospect because it's hard to rank him that high after such a putrid season.

Overall, he's never been a loud tools guy. He profiles as a MLB average runner, hitter, fielder, and power hitter. If he does all that at 2B or SS, that's a really solid player.

As for Yorke and Blaze. Yorke is clearly ahead of Downs at this point (he's kind of the opposite Downs, in which he's a stand-out hitter, and questions everywhere else). Yorke will almost certainly be listed in every national top 100 list this off-season. Jordan is super exciting, but pretty far behind Downs, IMO. In that his profile carries a lot more risk (bat first 1B - though he's played 3B so far). He had an encouraging debut, but he's behind Downs (and JImenez. If I wanted to be crazy, I'd argue that I like what I've read of Miguel Bleis above Jordan as well, but that's probably a shade or 9 too aggressive.
Seems that pushing both Jordan and Yorke to corner OF spots makes some sense- maybe not Jordan though if his defense is truly that horrible.
I’m bullish on Jiminez as a great future CF
 

nighthob

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Yorke has elite bat to ball skills and burgeoning power. I liked Downs a couple of years ago and I like him now, but I’m fairly confident that the only way he beats out Yorke long term is if someone trading a Devers level talent wants Yorke. People are acting like Yorke is Michael Chavis (he isn’t) and Downs is the next Marcus Semien (he isn’t). Yorke got moved off short due to shoulder surgery. Is he fast? No. But neither was Dustin Pedroia (and, no, I’m explicitly not saying that Yorke will be that good, just that you don’t need elite speed to be a good defensive 2B). I’m pretty sure that Yorke takes over 2B in late ‘23 and Downs gets moved as a hugely valuable trade chip for upgrades elsewhere.

As for Jordan, he’s playing 3B now and has a decent arm. You can always move him to LF if you have to. The fact that he made middle A as an 18 year old (he’s slightly younger than Marcelo Mayer) makes him nigh on untouchable at the moment. That sort of power in someone that young you hold on to.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Totally legit question- are there examples of prospects who had a season as bad as Downs had at AAA (190/272/333) and became good major leaguers?

He had the worst stats of anyone who played for the Woo Sox this year. Arauz, who is the same age, put up 245/326/365.
 
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nighthob

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I’m not sure that you’d find many equivalent examples. The 2020 season was unprecedented and Downs ended up skipping AA after spending the year playing at the alternate site. Nick Yorke clearly thrived under identical circumstances, but he’s also a better prospect. Downs’ greatest value comes from being cost controlled for six+ years. If he’s nothing more than an average player he’s a hugely valuable trade chip.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Totally legit question- are there examples of prospects who had a season as bad as Downs had at AAA (190/272/333) and became good major leaguers?

He had the worst stats of anyone who played for the Woo Sox this year. Arauz, who is the same age, put up 245/326/365.
Jose Iglesias right off the top of my head.

Omar Vizquel.

I'm sure it's a trend.
 

The Gray Eagle

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Before today, Downs has played 2 games each at 2B and SS. It's good to see that he is still playing SS and hasn't yet moved down the defensive spectrum.
I also didn't realize that he was 18 for 21 in SBs this year at Worcester and has 87 steals in his minor league career.
 

nvalvo

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Totally legit question- are there examples of prospects who had a season as bad as Downs had at AAA (190/272/333) and became good major leaguers?

He had the worst stats of anyone who played for the Woo Sox this year. Arauz, who is the same age, put up 245/326/365.
Downs had 405 PA this season — remember, the AAA season was almost a month shorter than usual. And Downs hit pretty well in his last 60 or 70 PA in September.

So we're really looking for is equivalents for his (picking an end date) ~340 PA of ~.550 OPS. And that sort of thing doesn't feel terribly unusual.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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What is impressive with the HRs is that the GS and the one from Thursday were to Right/Right-Center. It isn't him selling out trying to pull bombs.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Downs had 405 PA this season — remember, the AAA season was almost a month shorter than usual. And Downs hit pretty well in his last 60 or 70 PA in September.

So we're really looking for is equivalents for his (picking an end date) ~340 PA of ~.550 OPS. And that sort of thing doesn't feel terribly unusual.
Thank you , good points- there are enough extenuating circumstances surrounding his dreadful season that help put it into contact and make it easier to rationalize, I think. Its been a very unique few years. Great to see him starting off so well in the AFL- imagine having some success and getting some confidence back can’t hurt.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Downs had 405 PA this season — remember, the AAA season was almost a month shorter than usual. And Downs hit pretty well in his last 60 or 70 PA in September.

So we're really looking for is equivalents for his (picking an end date) ~340 PA of ~.550 OPS. And that sort of thing doesn't feel terribly unusual.
It was his last 35 PA. He went 11/31, .355/.400/.581 on a .409 BAbip with 2bb/8k.

The previous 34, he had an OPS of .502.

So It was 365 PA of ~.550 OPS and 35 good PA in September.

There also isn't really any sugar coating his 2021 season. He was putrid.
 

SouthernBoSox

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It was his last 35 PA. He went 11/31, .355/.400/.581 on a .409 BAbip with 2bb/8k.

The previous 34, he had an OPS of .502.

So It was 365 PA of ~.550 OPS and 35 good PA in September.

There also isn't really any sugar coating his 2021 season. He was putrid.
And now add 21 at bats at .517/1.048/1.565 with 5 bombs and 8 walks with 6 K's. Being really really good in 55 at bats out of 420 isn't nothing, especially considering the circumstances and that he is improving.

He remains a very strong bounce back candidate in repeating AAA.
 

Cesar Crespo

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And now add 21 at bats at .517/1.048/1.565 with 5 bombs and 8 walks with 6 K's. Being really really good in 55 at bats out of 420 isn't nothing, especially considering the circumstances and that he is improving.

He remains a very strong bounce back candidate in repeating AAA.
Yeah he could bounce back.

FWIW, the AFL is probably easier than AAA.
 

Just a bit outside

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The Fangraphs Chin Music podcast put the level of pitching in the AFL at A+ to AA. The lost year really seems to have hurt Downs who could have used a year at AA. Lets hope he catches up to AAA in a repeat year and is ready for MLB in 2023.
 

nvalvo

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It was his last 35 PA. He went 11/31, .355/.400/.581 on a .409 BAbip with 2bb/8k.

The previous 34, he had an OPS of .502.

So It was 365 PA of ~.550 OPS and 35 good PA in September.

There also isn't really any sugar coating his 2021 season. He was putrid.
I have no intention to sugar coat. It was bad. But the question is how unprecedented this degree of badness is for an uninjured position player who goes on to be a good major leaguer. And all I am saying is that if we think of it as a "full season" we will find fewer comps than if we think of it as 365 PA. It's a tricky thing to search for, but here are two I came up with just wracking my memory.

Josh Donaldson — a future MVP — had a .217/.276/.349 stint in A ball that was about 250 PA long. Not quite as bad for not quite as long.

José Ramirez had a weird season in the minors where his power just vanished. He went from being a .300/.400/.500 type in A ball to .272/.325/.349 in AA. That was 533 PA. Again, not quite as bad; again, a guy who has finished in the top 3 in MVP voting three times.

Those are two very good hitters having very bad stretches in the minors. I'm not sure if they're quite as bad as Downs.
 

Cesar Crespo

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I have no intention to sugar coat. It was bad. But the question is how unprecedented this degree of badness is for an uninjured position player who goes on to be a good major leaguer. And all I am saying is that if we think of it as a "full season" we will find fewer comps than if we think of it as 365 PA. It's a tricky thing to search for, but here are two I came up with just wracking my memory.

Josh Donaldson — a future MVP — had a .217/.276/.349 stint in A ball that was about 250 PA long. Not quite as bad for not quite as long.

José Ramirez had a weird season in the minors where his power just vanished. He went from being a .300/.400/.500 type in A ball to .272/.325/.349 in AA. That was 533 PA. Again, not quite as bad; again, a guy who has finished in the top 3 in MVP voting three times.

Those are two very good hitters having very bad stretches in the minors. I'm not sure if they're quite as bad as Downs.
There are a lot of SS who didn't hit in the minors but had decent careers. I'm not sure what the reports are on Jeter's defense though. Maybe he has some intangibles too.

He also looks to be a completely different hitter in the AFL. Maybe he changed something.
 

shaggydog2000

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There are a lot of SS who didn't hit in the minors but had decent careers. I'm not sure what the reports are on Jeter's defense though. Maybe he has some intangibles too.

He also looks to be a completely different hitter in the AFL. Maybe he changed something.
Like the pitching he's going against? He may not have been ready for AAA this year. That doesn't ruin him as a prospect, but does lower expectations.
 

nvalvo

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Like the pitching he's going against? He may not have been ready for AAA this year. That doesn't ruin him as a prospect, but does lower expectations.
The thing about this is that reportedly, AAA pitching was really poor this season, which was given as a reason for the slow adjustments made by basically all of the touted rookie position players who weren't Wander Franco or Jonathan India.

Still, I poked around in the box scores. Downs his five HR off four pitchers:

Hans Crouse, 22 and has had two MLB starts for the Phillies. SP who was a pre-'19 top-100 prospect.
2 off R.J. Freure, 23 and in AA for the Astros. RP with high walk and K rates.
Evan Fitterer, 21 and in A ball for the Marlins. SP.
Kyle Hurt, 23 and in A ball for the Dodgers; RP with big K/9 numbers.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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He’s now 9 for 43 in the AFL, a .209 average. But 5 homers, 4 singles, 14 bb and 13k, so he’s got a .962 ops. And a .160 BABIP.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Having more than half your hits leave the yard will do numbers on the ol' BABIP.
Count the HR as hits and his BAbip goes up to .367. I'm not sure what use that is though. Having half your hits leave the year doesn't affect BAbip at all.