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A Look At Daryl Thompson

According to Hal McCoy, Reds rookie Daryl Thompson will make his big league debut tomorrow in Yankee Stadium.  Talk about trial by fire.  Thompson, 22, has just four Triple A starts under his belt.  Three weeks ago I mentioned that Thompson deserved a shot over Homer Bailey, and now he's getting it.

At both Double and Triple A this year, Thompson has demonstrated superb command with strong K/BB ratios.  He posted a 3.25 ERA in Triple A, but it was marred by just one poor start.

Fantasy leaguers just want to know whether Thompson will succeed in the Majors.  Baseball Prospectus' Kevin Goldstein gives a strong scouting report:

His low-90s heater can touch 95 and features a bit of cutting action, while his changeup is plus and his curveball solid.

On the other hand, McCoy talked to an NL scout who said, "That kid is not ready for the majors, not even close."  And Baseball America didn't regard Thompson highly enough to include him among the Reds' top 30 prospects.  They seem warmer on him now, calling his fastball "explosive" in May.

Thompson may have fallen off the radar due to '05 labrum surgery.  McCoy says Jim Bowden thought he was "sticking it to the Reds" when he sent Thompson over there in the big Clayon/Bray/Majewski/Harris/Kearns/Lopez/Wagner swap!  Bowden reportedly didn't think Thompson would last.

Who to believe?  At the least, pitching prospects seem more likely to hit the ground running than position players.  I wouldn't use Thompson against the Yankees.  But after that, he'll get the Blue Jays, Pirates, and Nationals if no one is skipped and he remains in the rotation.  So he's worth a speculative pickup if you have the bench room.

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