Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Josh Kroeger Report

Josh Kroeger, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks
Drafted 129th Overall (4th Rd), 2000 Draft, HS, San Diego, CA
Bats L/Throws L
22 YO, 6'2", 200 lbs

The Diamondbacks have an interesting dilemma to sort out. They have too many good young corner outfielders, especially now that they've moved Scott Hairston. Kroeger is among that fleet. He's a kid with a lot of power potential and good numbers in the upper minors at a young age. Based solely on that, there's not much to argue with. However, he still needs to do quite a bit of work on his plate discipline and he's moving down the defensive spectrum as he fills out.

He was drafted as a quick, athletic center fielder with a good arm. He's a capable right fielder for the foreseeable future as he's lost quite a bit of that speed, but still is in possession of good range for a corner OF and a nice arm. It would have been nice if he could have stayed in center since his best long term competition would be Luis Terrero. In right, he's fighting with Jon Zeringue, Carlos Quentin, and Sean Green's albatross contract. In left, you have Luis Gonzalez, Hairston, and Conor Jackson.

2004 El Paso: .331/.393/.588, 28 2B, 4 3B, 9 HR, 21 BB, 48 K, 245 AB
2004 Tucson: .332/.376/.587, 23 2B, 0 3B, 10 HR, 15 BB, 47 K, 208 AB
2004 Arizona: .167/.182/.222, 3 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 1 BB, 21 K, 54 AB
pre-2005 mL Career: .290/.343/.444, 134 2B, 23 3B, 41 HR, 143 BB, 433 K, 1977 AB

His patience at the plate is noticeable. It was still bad enough to be easily exploited by Major League pitchers in his brief late season trial.

I know I've complained about this before, but you're about to get it again. It is almost impossible to get a really good read on Diamondbacks hitting prospects. El Paso, Lancaster, and Tucson are all great hitters parks, among the best in baseball. That improves this year, as El Paso is replaced by Tennessee. That doesn't help us with Kroeger much though.

Kroeger is a good prospect with the possibility of growing into a very good player. Everything hinges on that walk rate though. He makes good, hard contact with everything in the zone, can play a good right field. And he looks like the power could keep coming as his body matures. Stay tuned.

ETA: Early 2006
4 Stars



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