Rod-A: The Roderick Arias Thread

jon abbey

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From mlb.com:

Scouting grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 55 | Run: 55 | Arm: 55 | Field: 55 | Overall: 55

The top international prospect in the class, Arias is an extraordinary talent and the consensus No. 1.

There’s a lot to like about the teenager. Starting on the defensive side of the ball, Arias has plus arm potential. His throws are accurate and effortless, and he’s always in a position to make the throws. His arm is strong from any angle. He also shows good footwork with soft hands and above-average range.

At the plate, he exhibits above-average bat-to-ball skills and strike zone awareness. He shows good plate discipline and doesn’t swing and miss often. He shows power from both sides of the plate, especially by the right side. There’s good opposite-field power from the left side, and the overall package that could develop into a plus-plus hitter.

On the bases, Arias can score easily from first base and second base showing very good anticipation and awareness. He consistently runs the timed 60-yard run in 6.5 seconds, which is above average.

https://www.mlb.com/prospects/international/roderick-arias-703149
 

jon abbey

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From Fangraphs in December (although I can't find this on the site somehow):

"Arias looks like a typical top-of-the-class shortstop. His skill foundation (high-probability shortstop, viable hit tool from both sides supported by in-game performance) combined with his body projection creates lots of positive potential outcomes, the best of which would be Arias' maturation into the Goldilocks Zone, where he'll have added strength via maturity to hit for power, while also staying agile enough to play shortstop. That's the type of outcome that would yield a star player. If an aspect of his offensive profile falls short, the possibility of him either hitting or hitting for power while staying at shortstop would mean Arias becomes merely a solid big leaguer. Arias shares body and swing similarities with Cleveland shortstop Bryan Rocchio (the Rocchio of right now, not Rocchio when he was Arias' age), rolling his hands and elbow through contact in a way that enables airborne contact to all fields. There are hit/approach elements the industry can't be sure about until it sees Arias face pro-level pitching for an extended stretch, but he's been considered at or among the top players in his class for a few years after performing in a showcase setting."

Rocchio is 21 and their #58 MLB prospect overall, it is crazy they are equating the two as far as hitting currently. I get the sense that Arias right now is ahead of both Dominguez (a CF) and Alex Vargas (who Fangraphs still has as their #67 overall prospect even though NY never promoted him to low A last year).
 

Scoops Bolling

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From Fangraphs in December (although I can't find this on the site somehow):

"Arias looks like a typical top-of-the-class shortstop. His skill foundation (high-probability shortstop, viable hit tool from both sides supported by in-game performance) combined with his body projection creates lots of positive potential outcomes, the best of which would be Arias' maturation into the Goldilocks Zone, where he'll have added strength via maturity to hit for power, while also staying agile enough to play shortstop. That's the type of outcome that would yield a star player. If an aspect of his offensive profile falls short, the possibility of him either hitting or hitting for power while staying at shortstop would mean Arias becomes merely a solid big leaguer. Arias shares body and swing similarities with Cleveland shortstop Bryan Rocchio (the Rocchio of right now, not Rocchio when he was Arias' age), rolling his hands and elbow through contact in a way that enables airborne contact to all fields. There are hit/approach elements the industry can't be sure about until it sees Arias face pro-level pitching for an extended stretch, but he's been considered at or among the top players in his class for a few years after performing in a showcase setting."

Rocchio is 21 and their #58 MLB prospect overall, it is crazy they are equating the two as far as hitting currently. I get the sense that Arias right now is ahead of both Dominguez (a CF) and Alex Vargas (who Fangraphs still has as their #67 overall prospect even though NY never promoted him to low A last year).
I would be exceptionally surprised if Arias is rated ahead of Dominguez, who was much more highly regarded when he was signed, and I would be mildly surprised if he was put above Vargas given Vargas has already proven some hitting capabilities at a pro level and is a better defensive prospect. Not commenting on the Yankees specifically here, but people need to treat international signees with extreme skepticism; there is remarkably little correlation between international free agents' signing bonus and their future WAR. Keep in mind these are kids being signed after the equivalent of their sophmore year in high school; check out stuff like PerfectGame's rankings of prep players a couple years prior to their draft year, versus where the classes end up by the time they reach the MLB draft. Simple maturation causes huge variance in outcomes; for every Miguel Sano there are 3 or 4 Kevin Maitans. This is something I've had an issue with Kevin Goldstein in particular about for years, and Eric Longenhagen is in a similar boat, in that both are easily seduced by young athletes with huge ceilings...who have yet to prove they can even play passable baseball at a professional level. They have a tendency to get infatuated with best outcome maturation, not recognizing that at this age physical maturation can just as easily be hugely detrimental (maturation can make you slower, less explosive, etc). Until they've played in the US, none of these kids should ever be considered anything more than a 40+ FV player, the risk profile is simply too extreme until you have a pro sample in US ball (DSL numbers can and should be ignored).
 

billy ashley

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Requisite disclaimer that Scoops already highlighted, this is of course a very good signing for New York. They're adding a guy who would be tracking towards a top 15 pick in an upcoming draft if he were American (admitting of course that there is a lot of variability inherit to signing 17 year olds).
 

jon abbey

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Sure, those caveats are all legit, although with the Covid delays, Arias is 17 1/2 as opposed to Dominguez's 16 and 5 months when he signed in 2019, so a bit more mature.
 

billy ashley

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Yeah. This is pretty much getting a highly touted hs prep player with first round upside a year before they are drafted.

It's worth being excitement for as Yankee fans.
 

crow216

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short version: he’s a prospect and nothing is guaranteed

The write ups are pretty awesome on this kid, so yea, definitely excited to see what he can do in the system. The Yankees better put a couple of these kids at 3B and 2B. SS is getting crazy.
 

jon abbey

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Nothing is guaranteed with veterans either.

Peraza and Volpe (and Oswaldo Cabrera) are the ones within 1-2 years of MLB, the others are all quite far away. Sweeney is likely to be a 3B, I think.