Good randomly generated collection of characters from Bay City Ball on Conor Gillaspie, who knows how to control the strike zone, and is still just 24. He had an above-average year in Fresno, so why aren't we more excited about him?
Maybe "excited" isn't the right word. The better question: Why is he an afterthought, then? At least, that's how I've been viewing him, lumping him in with the Dan Ortmeiers of the world. He's the beacon of plate discipline in the system, though. Which is a loaded statement in a couple of ways, but it's true.
When Bill Mueller was 23, he put up a .302/.435/.425 line with a BB/SO ratio of 103/47 in 544 plate appearances. That was more impressive than what Gillaspie did in his age-23 season last year -- .297/.389/.453. Well, it's more impressive until you consider that Mueller was in A-ball, doing that in the California League, while Gillaspie did his work in AAA.
Am I saying that Gillaspie will leave the Giants and lead the AL in hitting in a few years? Of course I am. Those who forget history are doomed to be force-fed cliches. But the larger point is that Gillaspie has the tricky part down already -- he can walk, and he doesn't strike out a lot. There's no guarantee that the doubles power will develop, but Mueller's ISO was worse at the same age, two levels lower.
Starting to think he could be a decent hitter one of these days. It looks like the corners are locked up for the next few years, so the Giants will have to figure something out if he forces the issue. BCB suggests trying him at second. Sounds good to me.