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April 14, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Baseball America's Jim Callis

Jim (San Francisco)

Are you worried about your golden child Dustin Ackley's start?

Jim Callis
  (2:03 PM)

Yes, I've given up on Ackley because 22 pro at-bats indicate he's not very good. I jest, of course. He's still going to win a big league batting title some day. Can't tell you how many scouts told me he's the best college hiter they've seen in the last 20 years.

Justin (PA)

The ceiling for Domonic Brown is______________.

Jim Callis
  (2:03 PM)

All-star, on a regular basis.

Zio (Midwest)

It's being reported that the Nats are officially going to pick Harper in June, stating that they see him as being "head and shoulders" above the rest of the crop. If true, will his signing bonus eclipse Strasburg's?

Jim Callis
  (2:09 PM)

I don't doubt that they see him head and shoulders over everyone else, but nothing with the draft is 100 percent certain in mid-April. Injuries or signability could change their direction. Strasburg was a better prospect, but Harper has more leverage because of his youth and ability to re-enter the next three drafts. I think they'll be similar in that they're so talented they'll get offered too much money to turn down. Right now, I'm guessing Harper gets a big league deal worth between $10 million and $12 million, and he signs it at 11:58 p.m. ET on deadline day.

Ryan (Milwaukee)

Theoretically, if you're trading a franchise star like a Fielder (or say a Mauer, had it come to that) would you be more in favor of trying to land the one elite (say top 10) prospect in return for him, or would you rather try and land multiple guys with varying levels of preparedness and upside to spread the risk around a bit? Or do you simply have to go for the best projected return value, no matter how that comes?

Jim Callis
  (2:10 PM)

I think you have to get the best projected return, in whatever form. You win with stars and superstars, so I'd rather have the elite prospect if everything else is equal.

ZackG (Berkeley )

What's a best case scenario for Nationals prospect Jeff Kobernus? What level does he reach this year and can he turn into a very good regular like the crosstown Brian Roberts? Also what kind of defender do you expect him to be at 2nd?

Jim Callis
  (2:12 PM)

It's realistic to hope he can become a solid regular, don't see him quite as good as Roberts has been. Probably tops out in high Class A this year. He has the athleticism to be a good second baseman once he gets more experience there.

Brandon (AZ)

With Chris Carter charging in Oakland do you think Beane could look to trade Daric Barton? They need to clear first to get the most value out of Carter right? Would Barton net a big return or are 1st baseman a dime a dozen?

Jim Callis
  (2:12 PM)

I'm not a Barton fan, don't think he has much trade value.

Zeke (Houston)

Who are the best college hitters that could be around with a late first round or 2nd round pick in this year's draft? Are there any guys close to the big leagues but who may not be have huge star potential?

Jim Callis
  (2:14 PM)

In that area, you could be looking at guys like Clemson outfielder Kyle Parker, Ball State second baseman Kolbrin Vitek, West Virginia shortstop Jedd Gyroko (he'll change positions in pro ball) and Virginia Tech outfielder Austin Wates. All would be nice values there.

Ray A. (San Diego, CA)

The San Francisco Giants seem to have a glut of young catchers with promise: Buster Posey, Tommy Joseph, and Hector Sanchez. At some point the Giants would probably have to trade Joseph or Sanchez right?

Jim Callis
  (2:15 PM)

Not necessarily. Joseph hits well enough to play another position and Sanchez is far enough away right now so it's not really an issue.

Andy young (Lower burrell pa)

Do you think the penguins can repeat as Stanley cup champs.

Jim Callis
  (2:16 PM)

Sure, but I'm rooting for my original (Washington) and current (Chicago) hometown teams.

Justin (DC)

Jim,Do you guys have any idea yet of what the Blue Jays have in Hechavarria? Thanks!

Jim Callis
  (2:17 PM)

From what I've heard, comparing him to another Cuban defector (Jose Iglesias, Red Sox), Hechavarria has a better bat but isn't the same Gold Glove-caliber defender. Should be able to stay at shortstop, sounds like a very interesting player.

Dale (Detroit)

Ignoring his bonus demands, is Ranaudo still a top 5 pick after his injury? Will teams shy away from him not that he has had an arm issure?

Jim Callis
  (2:18 PM)

It all depends on how he performs down the stretch. If he's the old Anthony Ranaudo, I don't think his early season issues will bother teams much.

Tyler (Harrodsburg, Ky)

Jim, what are the chances that a guy like Drew Pomeranz jumps into the discussion as the #1 player taken in the upcoming draft? Do you see him possibly leaping over Bryce Harper and Jameson Taillon?

Jim Callis
  (2:19 PM)

Pomeranz is having such a great spring that it wouldn't stun me to see him being the first college pitcher drafted. But I don't think he goes ahead of Harper or Taillon unless signability becomes a major factor.

Danny (Washington DC)

Is there a Jim Callis video out there of you drunk slamming Kevin Goldstein so you could just get the "expletive" story and then saying that you'll never get Badler on the field? That would be hilarious...

Jim Callis
  (2:20 PM)

Wow, this is way over my head . . . I'm lost here.

Kevin (NY, NY)

Just wondering what you think about Cole from California (spurned the Yankees 2 years ago by choosing to go to college.) What kind of prospect is he at this point?

Jim Callis
  (2:21 PM)

UCLA RHP Gerrit Cole projects as one of the top three picks for next year's draft, along with Rice 3B Anthony Rendon and Texas RHP Taylor Jungmann. I should throw TCU LHP Matt Purke in there too.

Joe (Minneapolis)

Hi Jim. I am very excited by some of the young arms down in Lakewood and Clearwater this Spring. Cosart, May and Hyatt to name a few. Is the BA team bullish on these prospects or should I temper my enthusiasm?

Jim Callis
  (2:21 PM)

Color us bullish. The Phillies system has been thinned out, but they still have a lot of intriguing, high-upside players in the lower levels of the system.

Tim (Virginia)

Jim, if I had to bet, I'd say the Pirates take Pomerantz at number 2, assuming the Nats take Bryce. They already have two of his former staff-mates in the system and I think they are still hesitant to take a HS arm with a first rounder. Would Pomerantz be a poor choice at number 2 in your opinion?

Jim Callis
  (2:22 PM)

Not a poor choice, just not the best choice.

Jim (Vermont)

Is Nomar a HOFer? His peak years were pretty stout (and I'm a Yankee fan).

Jim Callis
  (2:22 PM)

Not quite for me. Similar case to Don Mattingly (and a better one), but for me, he wasn't a great player for long enough.

Matt (Mohegan Sun, CT)

How soon until Montgomery (KC) goes to AA? I know it's only two starts but 19:1 K/BB and 0.42 WHIP seem pretty strong.

Jim Callis
  (2:24 PM)

If he keeps this up, he'll be in Double-A by the end of May, if not sooner. J.J. Cooper was at his game yesterday and raved about it: http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/?p=8304

Tom (Los Alamos)

Jim, whats you opinion on the Lee-Halladay trade after seeing Halladay's first two starts and knowing Lee is missing the first month of the season? Did the Phillies get a great deal here?

Jim Callis
  (2:24 PM)

I'd rather have Halladay than Lee, but I don't think the Phillies got enough for Lee. My opinion on that hasn't changed.

Jim Callis
  (2:26 PM)

Just got several "24"-related questions that spoiled a major death for me! Guess that's fair for my inadvertant spoiling over the years. Fairly telling that I almost never watch "24" live any more.

Jason (Muskegon, MI)

Matusz or Anderson?

Jim Callis
  (2:27 PM)

Very, very tough. Pretty much a coin flip for me. I'll say Anderson.

Mike (Washington, D.C.)

When Strasburg finally gets called up, do you see Storen already there or coming in with him?

Jim Callis
  (2:27 PM)

I bet they promote them in tandem.

Tim (Missouri)

Ethan Martin or Jacob Turner?

Jim Callis
  (2:27 PM)

Turner.

Mike (Corpus Christi, Texas)

I'm a Reds fan, so I'm excited about the prospect of having a solid young starting pitcher in the rotation. That said, i've watched Mike Leake pitch in College, and now in the Majors, and don't see that much to be excited about. In terms of velocity, location and movement, his "stuff" doesn't seem all that different than that of Bronson Arroyo.....not too exciting!! Thoughts?

Jim Callis
  (2:28 PM)

His stuff isn't exciting, but the way he commands it is. I don't think Leake will be star, but I think he can be a solid mid-rotation pitcher.

Dan (CT)

Jim, At what point do the Yankees have to take action for Jorge Posada not being able to throw out a base stealer? Could you see him being the full time DH by the end of the year with Johnson gone and Montero up platooning with Cervelli (Or some similar arrangement)?

Jim Callis
  (2:31 PM)

I think they'll continue to trade defense for offense. I eventually expect Posada and Montero to share time at catcher and DH. Posada's substandard defense may make it easier to accept Montero's.

Jim (Los Angeles)

Lightning round....Zack Wheeler or Matthew Moore

Jim Callis
  (2:31 PM)

Not lightning round yet. But my answer is . . . Moore.

Brett Anderson (Oakland)

How long before people start paying attention to me like they did for Zack Greinke last year?

Jim Callis
  (2:35 PM)

Keep pitching like this and it will happen.

CC (Atlanta)

Is Craig Kimbrel the Braves future closer or is that expecting too much?

Jim Callis
  (2:36 PM)

No, that's my best guess at this point too.

Ben (Leland Grove, MO)

Better lefty in five years' time -- Matzek, Chapman or Montgomery?

Jim Callis
  (2:36 PM)

Matzek.

Matt (Chinatown)

Just how good is Nelson Cruz, really?

Jim Callis
  (2:38 PM)

He's more solid regular than star, his all-star selection last year notwithstanding. And his .458/.533/1.250 start notwithstanding. Those look like Bryce Harper numbers!

David (Dallas)

What if you throw Martin Perez into Ben's question? Better lefty in 5 years -- Matzek or Perez?

Jim Callis
  (2:40 PM)

I would take Martin Perez.

Dan (Chicago)

The weird post by Danny in DC from before was referring to the news about Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, making fun of Bill Parcells, saying that he only brought him in to get a new stadium, and then saying that Tim Tebow would never see the field... just helping clarify the context behind that poster's statement - I don't think he knew you were all about baseball, and not really a football guy.

Jim Callis
  (2:40 PM)

Thanks. I love football, but that one went over my head.

Ryan (Ashburn, VA)

Jim, There seems to be mixed reviews on Harper as the #1 pick. What's your opinion?

Jim Callis
  (2:41 PM)

I think he's clearly the No. 1 talent in this draft. Ridiculous power, chance to catch, athleticism to at least play RF if he can't catch. I envision a future .270 hitter with 40-HR power.

Dan (chicago)

Latos or Buchholz for the next 3 years

Jim Callis
  (2:42 PM)

Let's start the lightning round now, as my hunger is affecting my ability to focus . . . Buchholz.

Steven (ATL)

Who has the better career, Colby Rasmus or Domonic Brown?

Jim Callis
  (2:43 PM)

Rasmus.

Arin (Ca)

Neal or Tabata

Jim Callis
  (2:43 PM)

Interesting . . . Tabata.

BK (West LA)

Better prospect: Trevor Reckling or Fabio Martinez?

Jim Callis
  (2:43 PM)

Martinez intrigues me more.

Jason (St Louis)

If the Red Sox elect to not pay big money to Victor Martinez, as they shouldn't and Theo is no dummy, where could you see him ending up? Certainly not the NL and most of the DH spots in the AL are either locked up or on thrifty teams. I think he may be in for a rude awakening this coming off season.

Jim Callis
  (2:44 PM)

I think he goes back to Boston, which won't have a better option at catcher.

chris (Falmouth MA)

Will Chad Bettis be a 1st round pick even though he is projected as a reliever? Why would a team use their top pick for a possible setup man or closer when they could get someone like an everyday position player or starting pitcher. Seems like that would not be good value. Thanks Jim

Jim Callis
  (2:44 PM)

I think he's more of a sandwich/second-round pick for exactly that reason.

John (New York)

Better player in 5 years: Montero or Posey

Jim Callis
  (2:46 PM)

Montero. The bat is that special.

Jose (Honduras, by way of Connecticut)

Matt Moore or Alex Colome?

Jim Callis
  (2:46 PM)

Moore.

Taylor (CO)

Strasburg or Lincecum in 5 years?

Jim Callis
  (2:46 PM)

In 2015, Strasburg.

Scott (Fayetteville, AR)

Is Brett Eibner gonna get drafted as a Pitcher or CF? Also, is Zack Cox the first college position player taken?

Jim Callis
  (2:47 PM)

I think more teams like Eibner as a pitcher, but it's not a landslide and he could go either way. Excluding junior college players (Bryce Harper), Cox has a chance. His main competition is Cal State Fullerton SS Christian Colon. Tell your Razorbacks to go easy on my alma mater this weekend.

David (Dallas)

Buerhle's opening day play or the field?

Jim Callis
  (2:48 PM)

Buehrle will be tough to top.

Erich (CT)

So you envision Harper to be a future Adam Dunn? Well, that's not a number 1 pick to me.

Jim Callis
  (2:54 PM)

1) If he can catch, that's an easy Hall of Famer. 2) Guaranteed .270/40 HR hitter would be a No. 1 pick in most drafts. At worst, Dunn was the fourth-best player to sign out of the 1998 draft (Sabathia, Holliday, Drew).

Nico (MPLS)

Sean Rodriguez or Skip Schumaker for the rest of this year?

Jim Callis
  (2:54 PM)

Rodriguez.

Jason (St Louis)

Albert Pujols for a third mvp in a row or the field?

Jim Callis
  (2:55 PM)

It would be silly to bet against Pujols.

Mike (Lake Forest, ca)

Don't you think you overvalue porspoects too hhly over proven major leaguers. Strasburg over Lincecum??? Lincecum has back to back Cy Young awards already. How much better could Strasbu really be unlessyou think hes going to be one of the best of all time.

Jim Callis
  (2:55 PM)

Five years from now, Lincecum will have a lot of mileage on his arm, so I worry a little from that standpoint. That's why I took Strasburg.

Jim (San Francisco)

Game 7 of the World Series. Who in the game right now do you want starting for you?

Jim Callis
  (2:56 PM)

Zack Greinke.

Bill (Pittsburgh)

Brett Wallace or Chris Carter or Logan morrison - please rank

Jim Callis
  (2:56 PM)

Morrison, Wallace, Carter.

Benji (San Antonio)

Carlos Santana (9-20, 4-HR): In the Show before or after June 1st?

Jim Callis
  (2:57 PM)

Before. But no reason to call him up to make him arbitration-eligible a year early.

Eamon (DC)

Boston has allowed the 4th most runs in the AL. Beckett and Lester have gotten shelled, and Papelbon is still enamoured with his fastball which is looking straighter and slower (by 2-3 mph). Should I be unconcerned, mildly concerned, worried, or looking for a stout branch to sling a rope over?

Jim Callis
  (2:58 PM)

Unconcerned. Way too early.

Trent (LA)

What % of questions today have been: ___________ has started the season either outstanding or terrible, so that dictates they are a star or bust?

Jim Callis
  (2:58 PM)

Way too many. See the last one.

Baron (Large, PA)

Lightning Round: Beatles or Dylan? Thanks

Jim Callis
  (2:59 PM)

Beatles.

Jim (San Francisco)

Outside of Pujols, bases loaded, Game 7 of the Series. Who do you want up at the plate?

Jim Callis
  (2:59 PM)

First two names that jumped to mind were Ichiro and Derek Jeter.

Joe (Minneapolis)

But if you pick Greinke the bullpen will blow the game in the 8th-9th!

Jim Callis
  (3:00 PM)

I didn't know I had to take the Royals' bullpen with him!

Brent (Vancouver)

Bryce Brentz or Michael Choice?

Jim Callis
  (3:01 PM)

Choice.

Jim Callis
  (3:01 PM)

I must go get some lunch or pass out, so I choose lunch. See you guys next week.