Carey: Diamond Mining the 2015 Hall of Fame class

From SABR member Ross Carey at Replacement Level Podcast on December 1, 2014:

The Baseball Hall of Fame (in conjunction with SABR) launched its Diamond Mines exhibit last year. The exhibit and its corresponding web database have scouting reports for over 4,000 players from more than 400 scouts.

Last year I used these scouting reports to take a look at some of the notable newcomers on the 2014 Hall of Fame ballot. I thought I would do the same with the 2015 class.

Randy Johnson– Drafted in the 2nd round (36th overall) of the 1985 draft by the Montreal Expos.

In 1985 shortly after being drafted by the Expos Johnson was playing in an Instructional League game where he was scouted by Larry Monroe. Monroe pitched for the White Sox in 1976 and later became a scout for them. Monroe was not in love with what he saw from Johnson at the time. The first comment he made about him not surprisingly focused on his gigantic 6’10″ frame but he also noted that Johnson’s curveball/slider was “too big.” He reported that Johnson “gave away his changeup” and that he was “inconsistent with all of his stuff.” In fairness, he praised Johnson’s fastball calling it “Major League caliber.” He also noted that Johnson was a  “poor fielder with no move to first base” and that he “didn’t see enough consistency to like him as a Major Leaguer, even though he had the arm.”

In 1990 Johnson was scouted twice (at least) by Scott Reid who was working for the Cubs at the time. Reid played outfield for the Phillies in 1969 & 1970. On his report dated October 1st he praised Johnson remarking he had “great potential and plus stuff.” He also noted that “he needs better command.” He placed a check mark in a column asking if the player observed could help his team. His follow up report dated December 1st echoed his praise for Johnson.

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Originally published: December 1, 2014. Last Updated: December 1, 2014.