Before They Were in the HOF, They Were Prospects
Hall of Fame baseball players weren't always Hall of Famers. There was a point when they were merely prospects trying to make it big. Get an inside look at what the scouts had to say about some of the best players to play the game. Some of these are very accurate and other scouts probably should have been fired.
- May 26, 1952, by scout Dewey S. Griggs
"Great pair of hands, seems relaxed at all times and a good wrist hitter. Has a tendency to run on his heels. Needs experience. Negro ballplayers as a whole are front runners in my estimation. When ahead, they look very good and very bad when behind. However this boy looks very good and if he can make the plays to his left and right, he could be the answer. I feel that he has the ability.
- May 15, 1954, by scout Bill Zinser
"Very good prospect, also a very good hitter. Has averaged 16 strikeouts per game this season. Aptitude—very good. Outstanding aggressiveness. Definite prospect. Tall, muscular, quick reflexes, well-coordinated. Going to University of Cincinnati on a scholarship. Not interested in pro ball until he graduates. Also plays first because of hitting ability."
- July 15, 1956, by scout Frank Fahey
"This boy attends Creighton. He has not had much pitching experience, but has nice loose arm and can throw hard. Will be a junior at Creighton this fall."
Player's Strength: Good loose arm and fastball. Also shows good curve ball, but not consistent.
Player's Weakness: Inexperience and control.
- November 5, 1952, by Al Campanis
"Well built, fair size, good ability. Will mature into a big man. Attending high school, but plays with Santurce (Puerto Rican League). Has all the tools and likes to play. A real good looking prospect! He has written the commissioner requesting permission to play organized ball."
Arm: "A+" -- good carry
Fielding: "A" -- good at this stage
Hitting: "A" -- turns head, but improving
- August 15, 1958, by scout Al Monchak
"This boy has a very fast swing—may develop into a good hitter—left-handed pitchers give him trouble at this stage—arm may be questionable."
Player's Strength: Fast bat and speed
Player's Weakness: Doesn't know strike zone
- March 27, 1965, by Tom Lasorda
"Well built with good actions. This boy showed a real good fastball with good life. Has real good command of point of release. Boy has slider type of curve, but could improve as he has good arm action and should be able to come up with good curve. Boy has plenty of desire to pitch and want to beat you."
- Spring Training 1968, by Reds Manager Dave Bristol
"Give him a couple of years and he'll be the best around. Does everything we ask of a catcher. Outstanding arm and catches ball good. Tough kid who can catch everyday. Has good, quick stroke with the bat, with some power. Tends to get on his pitchers a little too much, but this is only a minor flaw. One of the best to come along in a long time."
- July 7, 1969, by scout Vedie Himsl
"Saw this boy play six games in the Central Illinois Collegiate League. Well-build boy with quite a bit of ability. A steady type player—one you keep looking for him to do more. He could be a little more aggressive all around, in the field and at the plate. Throws the ball well when he throws overhand—has tendency to drop his arm down to the side and does not throw as well from there. Needs to charge ground balls more. At the plate, he takes a good cut; short swing and has strong arms. He did some switch-hitting in practice but did not see him hit left-handed in any of the games. Has been blessed with better than average ability—just must work a little harder and he could develop into a good player. The more I saw him, the more I liked his chances."
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© 2014 William
William (author) from America on May 22, 2014:
Haha, I know right? And I've always loved Lasorda. That man knows his baseball.
CJ Kelly from the PNW on May 22, 2014:
Great hub. Very interesting. Can you imagine mentioning someone's race in a scouting report? Wow. I found Lasorda's take on Seaver to be great. Voted up.