Monday, January 21, 2013

DrB's 2013 Giants Top 50 Prospects #33: Roger Kieschnick

Roger Kieschnick, OF.  DOB: 1/21/1987.  6'3", 220 lbs.   B-L, T-R.

AAA:  .306/.376/.604, 15 HR in 222 AB.
DWL:  .228/.308/.391, 4 HR in 92 AB.

Roger Kieschnick was off to a great start to his 2012 season in Fresno when he fractured his left shoulder crashing into the LF wall trying to catch a ball.  The injury, which is not expected to have any long lasting effects kept him out of the Fresno lineup until late August.  He then went to the DWL to get in some of the AB's he missed out on in the regular season.

Kieschnick has been one of the Giants better power hitting prospects since he was drafted in round 3 of the 2008 draft, the same year Buster Posey was taken in the first round.  His main problem as a prospect is that he has lost the better part of 2 developmental seasons to injury which leaves him at age 26 with no clear path to the majors in the organization that controls his destiny.  Having said that, LF in 2013 is probably far from a done deal in SF and I could see Kieschnick drawing a long look in Spring Training and getting called up if he's tearing it up in Fresno and the Giants MLB options in LF are stinking it up.

Roger K also has tools.  Speed is probably his weakest asset, but he can cover a corner OF position and not be a negative.  He has a great throwing arm.  He has solid power.  The hit tool may be marginal, but he's done well when healthy.  I probably should have ranked him higher as he likely has about as much chance as Francisco Peguero of winning a MLB job within the next 2 years.  He better do it in that window, though, or time will run out on him.


  1. Eh, his injury history is what complicates any prognostication on where to rank him. I think we can all agree that based on what he has shown so far, he should be higher, but given his history, that's why he's so low. I think you pegged everything just about right with him.

    Personally, I've liked Roger more than Francisco as a prospect up until last season, as Peguero never really impressed me. And I know it was just small sampling, but what Pegs did in the majors in his short audition was an outlier, both stealing and defense. And I frankly thought Roger basically earned a call-up mid-season and had he not been injured, probably would have gotten the call when Melky got busted, so it was not like he fell in my eyes.

    I'm excited about the competition for LF, call me a prospect extremist, but with Blanco probably battling it out with Pegs and Roger K, I think that could be an engrossing battle for playing time in LF in 2013 that could last deep into the season. Torres probably will get some shot as well, but I have to think Blanco will be considered the incumbent, but that Pegs and Roger K will be battling for a spot on the first, one, and two, will get a shot at grabbing LF, as Blanco was not that great offensively last season, just OK enough given his defense. But Pegs, as I noted - wow! - if he could continue that to any significant degree, he could be a fan favorite quickly.

  2. Looking at his contact rates through his career, I think Roger K was selling out for power in the PCL trying to get enough hype to get promoted. He will always have his share of Ks, so he's not going to have the greatest BA, but he might just get a shot this year. I go back and forth about who I like more, Peggs or Kieschnick. If Peggs isn't going to play CF, I think I might like the proven power of K over the potential of P. Kieschnick might have an advantage on the throwing arm, although that's pretty close. But the injury history (its even in his BA scouting report - runs into walls!) is spotty for Roger. That back injury was a killer to his development. Its a testament to his will that he came back from it, and the Giants putting him on the 40 shows they do place some faith in him. Big season coming up, for both OFs.

    1. Speaking of going back and forward, the Giants won because of more defense and (not always by desgin, I guess) less power.

      That would suggest Peggs.

      But then, that's one area we could use some help. So, does it suggest Roger K?

    2. Unless Peggs matures and adjusts, his BA will be very close to his OBP. Against advanced pitching, we have no idea what it means until they try. But based on their minors stats, Peggs has a sizable lead on BA, so they might work out similar OBPs in the end. But Kieschnick has a big lead on the power front. And Peggs has had his knee operations, so they are both actually huge injury questions. It was encouraging to see Peggs steal bases in his cup of coffee, after basically being told not to run during the year. But back to that BA for a sec, Roger K has 379 Ks in 1573 PAs, compared to Peggs 433 in 2582 PAs in the minors. So 1K more PAs roughly, almost the same Ks. But hold on, Roger K has more walks! 112 to 95, 1K less PAs.

      I don't think Roger K's defense is that bad at all. Peggs will be more of a death to fly balls guy, but Kieschnick has that Nate the Great thing going on, where he gets injured big and small. Most likely to run into walls. That's a double edged sword right there.

      I think its great we have both these prospects, and they're at least as interesting as the AAAA legends of yore: Linden, Ortmeier, Bowker et al.

    3. Don't forget Niekro, or farther back, Minor, Lancellotti, heck, even Decker and Mark Leonard.

      Yeah, BLSL, Peggs seem to have the edge since he has the stellar defense, but he's got a similar skill set to Torres (but strikes out much less most probably, while less power, but most of all, much younger), while Roger can provide power off the bench, which is missing from our bench. Huff and Pill were our power off the bench last season, so the Giants did have that element before.

      But the Giants have been pretty consistent about only giving out rewards if you earn it, so Roger will have to beat out Peggs, if he wants that power spot. I think it'll be the better spring performance that gets the spot.