As luck would have it, I got some inside dope on three of the Reds' top four prospects from a scout from another organization. The dope came via one of my best baseball contacts. The news is not good.
Aroldis Chapman (Baseball Prospectus #1): On Chapman, the scout said he was a big stretch for the money. He's only got 1 and 1/2 pitches and there's a question about his make-up. He's probably a reliever down the road.
Todd Frazier (BP #3): May not become a regular player. He may not have the power to play a corner position, which is where his skills are leading him.
Yonder Alonso (BP #4): His struggles against left handers are real. He even struggled with lefties in college.
Mike Leake is BP's 2nd ranked Reds' prospect.
The Reds have not had a great reputation for drafting/signing and developing guys. For example, their first pick in the 2007 draft, Devin Mesoraco, did not even make BP's top-15 prospects. That's unexcusable. (Frazier was their second pick that year.)I hope this scout is wrong, but the Reds may be in for a decline in the farm system. I'm less worried about Frazier and Chapman than I am about Alonso.