Inking Lefties: Noel Arguelles and John Parrish

Three days ago we learned that LHP-John Parrish signed a minor league contract with the Royals.  Today we got word that LHP-Noel Arguelles has officially signed with the team.

I don’t have much to add on Arguelles signing since I devoted a fair number of words to the news back on December 7th, but I am glad that it is finally official.  Noel is now on the 40-man roster, and will be invited to spring training though he has no shot to make the major league roster according to Dayton Moore.

There’s no chance for him to make our Major League team out of Spring Training. We don’t expect that, we don’t anticipate that. He’ll start somewhere in our system — he’s 19 years old, so it’ll be like getting a sophomore in college basically.

Click here for Dick Kaegel’s post on MLB.com and here for Sam Mellinger’s post on Kansas City.com.  Kaegel reports that the deal is for $6.9 million, while Mellinger reports that the deal is for $7 million with $2 million in incentives.  Either way it is money well spent by the organization.  Both speculate that Noel will likely start the season in High-A with Wilmington which seems about right since Danny Duffy, Mike Montgomery, and Aaron Crow should open in Double-A.

~~~~~

Parrish is now 32-years old and joins the Royals organization after missing the entire 2009 season after having surgery to repair a torn labrum.  He was a 25th round pick of the Orioles in the 1996 draft.  In addition to Baltimore, Parrish has also pitched in the Mariners and Blue Jays organizations.  He has logged 751.2 innings in the minors with a 3.54 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, and 9.0 SO/9.  In 207 games in the minors he has started 101, but also has 10 saves to his credit.

In addition to his time in the minors, Parrish has also spent parts of seven seasons in the majors.  His time in the bigs has been spent in the pen, and he has only 16 starts spread out among the 174 games he has pitched in.  The career stats in the majors are mediocre:  4.54 ERA, 1.69 WHIP, 7.3 SO/9, and 99 ERA+.  From 2003-2005 he had a 3.10 ERA in 119 IP which was his best stretch.  His ERA+ during that run was 236 in 2003, 133 in 2004, and 136 in 2005.

Parrish last pitched in the majors in 2008 as a part of the Blue Jays and finished that season with a 4.04 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, and 105 ERA+ in 42.1 IP.  Those innings came as a result of 6 starts and 7 relief appearances.  A pretty respectable showing, but that was before his shoulder surgery.

Like Arguelles, he was invited to spring training, but apparently he actually has a chance to make the team according to Jin Wong.

He’ll be tried as a starter but could make the club in any role.

Instead of making the opening day roster, Parrish will find his way to Omaha.  Assuming he can bounce back from shoulder surgery, which is far from a sure thing, he’ll be fortunate to make a brief appearance in Kansas City later in the year.  The Royals have assembled a fair amount of Triple-A pitching depth through a slew of minor league contracts this offseason, and competition to pick up any available ML innings figures to be fierce.  He is a lefty so he has an advantage, but I anticipate that Hughes and Osuna will hold their own if they stay healthy.

In addition to his spring 2009 shoulder surgery, he also missed part of 2005 and the entire 2006 season recovering from Tommy John surgery.  He also missed the entire 2002 season but I was unable to track down why he missed that season.  Parrish is the type of guy you root for, but I don’t anticipate that he will make any contribution to the Kansas City Royals.  Hopefully he can recapture some success in Triple-A and parlay that success into an opportunity to make a big league team in 2011.

~~~~~

Two lefties.  One 19, one 32.  One is part of the future, one is just trying to extend his career and make it back from another injury.  Neither figures to contribute to the major league team in 2010.

(Wally Fish is the lead blogger for Kings of Kauffman and FanSided’s MLB Director.  Subscribe to his RSS feed and add him on Twitter to follow him daily.)

Topics: AL Central, Baseball, John Parrish, Kansas City Royals, KC, MLB, Noel Arguelles, Royals

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  • http://www.jaysjournal.com Jays Daze

    I’m torn as to whether signing Arguelles to that contract makes sense for the Royals. In a way, they have to try something, regardless of age, to make the team better, but is 5 years too short a period of time for the contract? Unlike Aroldis who can step into a rotation if it’s weak enough, Arguelles doesn’t have that much experience or talent. Besides, I’m fairly certain that both Aaron Crow and Danny Duffy would get a shot at the rotation before Arguelles would. In a way, it seems to me that Arguelles replaces Daniel Cortes in the minors – or what the Royals had actually wanted to get out of Cortes when they drafted him.

  • Wally Fish

    Daze,
    I love your work. That said, I completely disagree on Aroldis. I’ve read many reports that Argulles is the better prospect and Chapman is far from advanced. There is zero chance Chapman can step into a ML rotation anytime soon, and if he does he will get absolutely lit up. Anyone who says otherwise is buying into hype and not reality. Aroldis has had very little success internationally and the team that signs him will probably be wasting a lot of money.

    Arguelles has a more advanced arsenal, better control, and a better feel for pitching. His talent is in the ballpark of Chapman, and the Royals landed him for 1/2 to 1/3 of the investment it is going to take to land Aroldis.

    Noel could be pitching in the majors at some point in 2012 and then they’d have another 2 years on his contract with a controlled salary. I believe he would then go into arbitration for his 6th year before becoming a free agent. No matter how you slice it, signing Arguelles was an excellent move by the Royals. He would have been a surefire top 5 pick if he had been in the draft. $7 million dollars for that type of talent is certainly within reason for any team.

    Crow will arrive in KC late in 2010 or at some point in 2011. Montgomery shouldn’t be too far behind him. Duffy, Melville, Lamb, Sample and to a lesser degree Dwyer (not enough data on him in pro ball yet) all look like they have a shot, but the attrition rate of pitching prospects is such that you can never have too many.

    Cortes has a million dollar arm and a $0.10 head. I’m guessing Arguelles will fare better on and off the field when all is said and done. For what it is worth, the Royals didn’t draft Cortes, they got him from the White Sox in the Mike MacDougal trade.

    I was actually pretty happy the team traded Cortes, but I wish the return had been something better than Yuniesky Betancourt. Especially since the Mariners were looking to basically give Yunie away.

  • http://jaysjournal.com Jays Daze

    I always enjoy your pieces as well Wally, but we obviously got different information and feelings on these 2 guys. I’ll finish up my side of the chatter with this: if Aroldis is actually behind Noel in talent and readiness for MLB, why is it that KC was the only team bidding for Noel while there are reportedly 14-15 that were interested in bidding on Aroldis and 5 who actually put more than double what KC gave Noel on the line for him? I’m not saying scouts are always right – as made obvious by the draft each year, but from what I can tell most teams like Aroldis much more than Noel.

    I’ll be very surprised to see Noel surpass what KC already has in terms of minors SP in Crow-Duffy-Montgomery-Melville who should do well to support Greinke in the near future. That’s a kudos to KC for having so much SP minors talent, not a knock on Noel.

    Just a Jays fan observation – nothing more!

    Cheers Wally, and keep up the good work eh!

  • Wally Fish

    Jim Callis had this to say about Chapman on BA, “Chapman never has dominated Cuba’s Serie Nacional. He’s much more of a thrower than a pitcher.”

    Another BA writer compared him to Royals 2001 1st round pick Colt Griffin and that is not a name you want to be compared to … ever.

    John Manuel has “tempered his expectations for him”

    IMO, he’s more hyped than Arguelles because AC allegedly threw over 100 mph in Cuba and he has more experience on the international circuit. Because of that fact, and since he is almost 1.5-2 years younger, Noel isn’t as well known.

    It is worth noting that the highest I’ve seen Chapman on the radar guns (via reports) since defecting has been 97. Noel tops out at 96 and throws an easy 94. I’ve never seen either guy pitch obviously so I have no frame of reference. I therefore have to rely on what I read from various sources and consider the credibility of each of those sources.

    IMO, Arguelles signed for less because he was in the shadow of Chapman. The Royals were very wise to move quickly on him and get him signed before Aroldis signed. If Noel was still on the market after Chapman, his price would have escalated.

    No matter what happens going forward it is a pretty safe bet that Noel provides the Royals better value than whatever team lands Chapman. I saw teams were up over $20 million on him now. Which to me is just crazy.

    As is always the case, time will tell … who knows both could wind up being great.

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