Wednesday, February 20, 2013

"Let's Talk Prospects" - Hunter Morris

Jeffrey Hunter Morris


  • Born 10/7/1988 (age 24)
  • Hometown: Huntsville, AL
  • Height: 6'2
  • Weight: 200
  • College: Auburn University
  • Selected by the Brewers in the 4th round (129 overall) of the 2010 Amateur Draft
  • Finished last year: AA Huntsville Stars

After an impressive career at Grissom High School where he hit .470 with 46 homers, Morris was selected in the second round of the 2007 Amateur Draft by the Boston Red Sox. Morris didn't sign with the Sox and decided to attend college at Auburn instead, where he continued to put up impressive numbers, winning SEC Freshman of the Year in 2008 and SEC Player of the Year in 2010. After being drafted by the Brewers, Morris has improved every year in the system and had his best year in 2012 for his hometown Hunstsville Stars, hitting .303 with 28 home runs and flirting with the Triple Crown on his way to winning Brewers Minor League Player of the Year and Southern League Player of the Year awards.

Scouting report:

As a hitter, Morris has a pretty smooth lefty swing with some uppercut motion that can get a little long at times. He has good raw power and his hit tool has improved significantly since joining the Brewers organization, but his approach at the plate is best described as aggressive and he'll need to improve his plate discipline to be any more than an average regular. Despite good bat speed, he had struggled against lefty pitching in the minors and it's difficult to see that changing at the major-league level.

As a defender, Morris is a good athlete that moves well laterally and possesses an adequate throwing arm. An outfielder in high school, he had a tough time making the transition to first base and was error-prone early on in his minor league career, but cleaned up his mechanics in 2012 and now appears that he can be at least average at the position. 

At this point, Morris' potential as a major leaguer isn't particularly high due to his approach and platoon issues, the most likely outcome being that he should able to carve out a role as a platoon player in the mold of Brandon Moss or Mitch Moreland. However, Morris has worked exceptionally hard to reach his current prospect status after being viewed as more of an organizational player early on, so if he continues to improve his game it's certainly possible that he could become an above-average regular.

What's ahead:

Morris was likely going to begin the 2013 season with AAA Nashville, but the injury to backup first baseman Mat Gamel has thrown a wrench in that plan. With Gamel out for the season and starting first baseman Corey Hart set to miss the first month or two while recovering from knee surgery, Morris is now in the mix to be the starting first baseman on opening day, and assistant GM Gord Ash has already given Morris a vote of confidence. Considering his competition will likely be Bobby Corsby (who sucks), Taylor Green (who's not very good) and Alex Gonzalez (who's never played the position in a major-league game), Morris' chances are probably pretty good. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


With Spring Training all up ons, it's not only time for real baseball but pretend baseball. Thus, we at The Book of Gorman bring you the first annual Book of Gorman fantasy baseball league(s). So if you like fantasy baseball and you want to attempt to school some third-rate bloggers, now's your chance! If you're interested, either email me at or DM me your email on twitter. Don't worry about getting in, we'll create as many leagues as are necessary to get everyone in, and the drafts won't start until the week before the start of the regular season (March 31st). If only certain days work for you as far as drafting, let me know in the email/message, and I'll try and set you up in a league that will draft those days. I chose ESPN as the provider, because Yahoo sucks and is bad. As for the leagues themselves, here are the rules:

  • Please play out the season, even if your team sucks. A league with dead teams is no fun.
  • Your team name must be clever. "Team Johnson" is lame (unless you mean it as a double entendre) 
  • Trash talk is fine, but don't get personal. This is for fun, not creating enemies.
  • Have fun.

And here's the scoring

  • Live draft, snake fashion
  • Head-to-head (because rotisserie is bland)
  • Ten-team leagues, depending on number of responses (if we get 48 entrants, we'll just go with four 12-team leagues, etc.)
  • Waiver system for free agents
  • Daily transactions (10 moves per week limit)
  • 29 roster spots. They are as follows:  
First Base
Second Base
Third Base
Corner Infielder (1B/3B)
Middle Infielder (2B/SS)
Outfield (5 slots)
Utility (2 slots)
Starting Pitcher (5 spots)
Relief Pitcher (4 spots)
Pitcher (2 spots)
Bench (4 spots)
DL (2 spots)
  • There are ten scoring categories (five offense, five pitching) They are:
Home runs
Slugging percentage
Runs created (runs + RBI)
Net stolen bases
On-base percentage

Saves + holds
Quality starts

The scoring categories are not traditional, but I chose those ones because I feel it more reflects what is valuable in actual baseball. While the categories may be different, it shouldn't really change strategy a whole lot; you still just want good players. So if you are interested, let me know. And once again, have fun. 


Sunday, February 10, 2013

"Let's Talk Prospects" - Mitch Haniger

I was hoping to get started on this feature earlier this month, until I realized just how busy my schedule was going to be lately.

From now through Opening Day, The Book of Gorman is going to highlight the best and brightest prospects in the Brewers' system. Our goal is to help you learn a little more about who these players are, where they come from and what role you should expect them to fill on the big league club one day.

So without further ado, here's our first prospect...

Mitchell E. Haniger

  • Born 12/23/1990
  • Hometown: Santa Clara, CA
  • Height: 6'2" 
  • Weight:180 lbs
  • College: Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
  • Selected by the Brewers as a supplemental pick in the 1st round (38th overall) of the 2012 Amateur Draft.
  • Finished last year with: Low-A Wisconsin Timber Rattlers

Hailing from California's Bay Area, Mitch Haniger has grown up with the game of baseball. He comes from a big baseball family with his brother, Jason, and cousin both being drafted by major league teams. Haniger gained some recognition as a senior at Archbishop Mitty High School (CA) when he hit .364 with a school record 12 home runs, and found himself ranked 73rd on Max Preps' Best Senior list in 2009. He was drafted out of high school in the 31st round that year by the New York Mets, but did not sign, choosing instead to play college ball at Cal Poly.

Haniger's success continued at Cal Poly, where he earned many awards throughout his collegiate career. During his first year in 2010, Haniger won the Big West Freshman Player of the Year award, and as a Junior in 2012, he took home Conference Player of the Year honors after leading the Big West in home runs (13), RBI (64) and slugging percentage (.626).

Following his final year at Cal Poly, the Brewers drafted Haniger with the 38th overall pick of the 2012 MLB Draft and assigned him right out to their Low-A affiliate, the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. Haniger appeared in just 14 games for the T-Rats after suffering a season-ending knee injury on July 5th, but still showed promise in his brief-stint by accumulating an .808 OPS with 5 extra-base hits over 49 ABs.

Scouting report:

Haniger has a mature approach to the game at this point, which means he could move quick  through the Brewers' system. He has solid contact ability, good power and average speed, making him a fairly balanced player offensively. On defense, Haniger has above-average arm strength and good enough instincts to handle all three outfield positions.

Haniger profiles as more of a high-floor player with a relatively limited ceiling. None of his offensive tools are really exceptional, and though he has the prowess to handle center field, it's likely that his limited speed will land him in a corner outfield position down the road.

That's not to say Haniger couldn't be a good player, though. The issue mostly lies in that his bat profiles better in center field, but scouts are doubtful he can stick there long term. He has the ability to be a plus defender in right field, and if he can add a little more power to his offensive game, he has a chance to be a solid everyday player.  

Should Haniger fall short of his potential, he could be a versatile 4th outfielder with some pop, which is still a valuable asset on any team. Overall, there's certainly a lot to like about Haniger, and having a good work ethic can take a player with his skillset pretty far.

What's ahead:

Haniger is likely to pick up where he left off last season by starting 2013 with the Timber Rattlers. If he has a good showing in spring camp (especially with his health), though, he could find himself getting assigned right away to the Brevard County Manatees at the Advanced-A level.

As mentioned before, there's a good chance that Haniger moves fast through the system regardless of where he starts, so it's possible we could be seeing him with the big league club as early as 2014. It certainly appears that if all goes well health-wise from here on out, the future could be pretty bright for Haniger.