John Fay has this article in the Enquirer with the above title. It should be titled “Drafting a high-school pitcher is risky,” and someone should post it prominently in the Reds front office, preferable on GM Dan O’Brien’s door.
Then maybe we’ll quit seeing the likes of Ty Howington and Chris Gruler. One of the benefits of selecting a college pitcher is that the pitcher will have already shown some ability to stay away from injuries by pitching three years of college ball. While many high school pitchers may have a higher upside, college pitchers are more of a known commodity. Much less risky.
Most teams have realized this already, but the Reds haven’t. I’m afraid my favorite club is stuck hopelessly in the past as new information has come to light.
Regarding Gruler: a friend of mine is an outfielder in the Indians minor league system. He told me a couple of months ago that he played with Gruler in Arizona. He said Gruler was one of the worst pitchers there, and he was getting smacked around by everyone (including my friend, who will be in high-A ball for the Indians this year).
He said that the general consensus out there was that Gruler would never make the majors. Now, we know that players aren’t always the best judge of these things, but it’s interesting nonetheless.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.