Monday, December 3, 2012

Around The Horn 12/3: Team Prospect Rankings, Clinton Hollon, Stephen Gonsalves

- John Sickels over at Minor League Ball posted his Top 20 prospect rankings for the Chicago Cubs, with Javier Baez topping the list.

- Big League Futures put up a scouting report on Kentucky prep pitcher Clinton Hollon, who is also a Kentucky commit.

- The Seattle Mariners have one of the best farm systems in baseball and Baseball America posted their Top 10 prospect list with Mike Zunino taking the coveted top spot.

- Stephen Gonsalves is one of the best prep pitchers in the 2013 class and Baseball Prospect Report has a scouting video up on the lefty.

- Baseball Prospectus posted their Top 10 prospect list for the Kansas City Royals and not surprisingly they have Wil Myers at No.1.

- Mike Rosenbaum at Bleacher Report posted his Top 10 prospect list for the Toronto Blue Jays, with stud catcher Travis D'Arnaud topping the list.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

2013 MLB Mock Draft 1.0

With over half a year left until the 2013 MLB Draft, here is our first stab at a mock draft. These rankings were made based on who we believe each team will pick and roughly where we believe each player will be drafted.

1. Houston Astros - RHP Mark Appel, Stanford

No. 8 overall pick in 2012 Draft is unanimous favorite to go to Houston at this point.

2. Chicago Cubs - LHP Seth Manaea, Indiana State

Hard-throwing lefty had a meteoric rise after dominating Cape Cod League.

3. Colorado Rockies - OF Austin Meadows, Grayson HS (GA)

5-tool left-hander has 30/30 potential with plus defense after a stellar summer.

4. Minnesota Twins - RHP Ryne Stanek, Arkansas

A 2010 3rd-rounder, reaches the mid-90's with plus movement on FB with a plus slider.

5. Cleveland Indians - OF Austin Wilson, Stanford

Plus power/arm from 6'5" 245 lb outfielder with good speed; Swing can be a bit long

6. Miami Marlins - OF Clint Frazier, Loganville HS (GA)

Uber-athletic outfielder with ridiculous bat speed starred in the Under Armour All-America game with fellow Georgia prep Meadows.

7. Boston Red Sox - RHP Kohl Stewart, St. Pius X HS (TX)

Two sport commit to Texas A&M has projectable body, smooth delivery, and plus stuff.

8. Kansas City Royals - RHP Jonathan Crawford, Florida

Threw no-hitter against Bethune-Cookman in NCAA Tournament; 4-pitch mix includes mid-90's heater.

9. Pittsburgh Pirates - RHP Bobby Wahl, Mississippi

Strong righty has great mechanics in easy delivery with potential for three above-average to plus pitches.

10. Toronto Blue Jays - 3B Kris Bryant, San Diego

Possibly the best power hitter in this draft class, should be good enough to stick at 3rd Base.

11. New York Mets - C Jeremy Martinez, Mater Dei HS (CA)

Plus defensive catcher has the potential to be an above-average hitter with power at next level.

12. Seattle Mariners - LHP Trey Ball, New Castle HS (IN)

Athletic 6'6" Texas commit is top prep lefty in draft class; Has excellent projection to go with promising change-up.

13. San Diego Padres - 3B Colin Moran, North Carolina

Polished hitter with above-average power would be a doubles machine at Petco.

14. Pittsburgh Pirates - SS Oscar Mercado, Gaither HS (FL)

Plus-plus fielder already, has a smooth swing; Scouts are divided on his power potential.

15. Arizona Diamondbacks - OF Justin Williams, Terrebonne HS (LA)

Strong left-handed hitter as a quick swing that generates plus power.

16. Philadelphia Phillies - C Reese McGuire, Kentwood HS (WA)

Outstanding defensive catcher has an excellent approach a the plate with power potential; Toss-up between him and Martinez for top prep catcher.

17. Milwaukee Brewers - RHP Karsten Whitson, Florida

No. 9 overall pick in 2010 sits 93-95 with a plus slider; Change-up and command could use improvement.

18. Chicago White Sox - 1B/OF Dominic Smith, Serra HS (CA)

Relatively polished hitter with 30+ homer potential, should be athletic enough to stick in the outfield.

19. Los Angeles Dodgers - LHP Stephen Gonsalves, Cathedral Catholic HS (CA)

Projectable lefty who has potential for three above-average or better pitches.

20. St. Louis Cardinals - RHP Clinton Hollon, Woodford County HS (KY)

Impressive 4-pitch mix for a prep pitcher, includes a 91-94 fastball with movement.

21. Detroit Tigers - SS J.P. Crawford, Lakewood HS (CA)

Quick athlete should be able to stay at short and has smooth lefty swing.

22. Los Angeles Angels - LHP Marco Gonzales, Gonzaga

Crafty polished lefty had a phenomenal summer with Team USA.

23. Tampa Bay Rays - OF Aaron Judge, Fresno State

6'7" outfielder has huge power potential and good speed could move up with a big spring.

24. Baltimore Orioles - RHP Brett Morales, King HS (FL)

Has a low-to-mid 90's fastball with a plus change and developing breaking pitches.

25. Texas Rangers - C Chris Okey, Eustis HS (FL)

Solid tools across the board, could end up as the best catcher in this draft.

26. Oakland Athletics - 3B Travis DeMeritte, Winder Barrow HS (GA)

Top prep 3B prospect plays plus defense and has good power potential in his bat.

27. San Francisco Giants - A.J. Vanegas, Stanford

Reliever in college can pump mid-90's fastballs and has the durability and stuff to be a starter in pros.

28. Atlanta Braves - 1B/3B Dominic Ficociello, Arkansas

Lanky switch-hitter has a great line-drive swing but there are questions about his power.

29. New York Yankees - LHP Rob Kaminsky, St. Joseph's HS (NJ)

Local lefty already has a plus curveball and can bump it up to the mid-90's.

30. Cincinnati Reds - RHP Ryan Eades, LSU

LSU righty had a great summer at the Cape with superb command of a solid 4-pitch mix.

31. Washington Nationals - RHP Dustin Driver, Wenatchee HS (WA)

A durable, athletic prep pitcher who has good command of a low-90's fastball and solid slider.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Around The Horn 11/26: Houston Astros, Trey Ball, Mike Rosenbaum

- Baseball America posted their top 10 prospects for the Houston Astros, led by 2012 No.1 overall pick Carlos Correa.

- Baseball America's Nathan Rode reported that the Toronto Blue Jays will be holding a 12-team tournament at the Rogers Centre in September for college eligible players from Canada.

- Baseball Prospect Report posted a scouting video of New Castle HS (IN) LHP Trey Ball who is expected to be one of the first prep players taken in the 2013 Draft.

- Bleacher Report's Mike Rosenbaum put in a lot of work today ranking the 5 best pitching prospects for 2013, the top 10 Atlanta Braves prospects, the top 10 San Francisco Giants prospects, and the top 10 MLB prospects to watch during the winter ball season.

- Top Prospect Alert posted their Detroit Tigers 2013 Top 20 Prospects with Nick Castellanos taking the top spot.

- Baseball Prospectus posted their Top 10 prospect list for the Florida Marlins and despite the influx of prospects from the mega-trade, Jose Fernandez remains the No.1 guy.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Austin Meadows Draft Profile

Name: Austin Meadows
Position: Outfielder
Year: Senior
School: Grayson HS (GA)
Bats/Throws: Left/Left
Height/Weight: 6'3"/ 205
D.O.B.: 05/03/1995
College Commitment: Clemson University

Scouting Report: Georgia is typically a hotbed for athletic prep outfielders, and this year is no different with Austin Meadows heading the 2013 class. Meadows looks the part of a superstar on the diamond and the lefty's exciting 5-tool package reminds scouts of Colby Rasmus. The Clemson commit showcased his 6.31 60 time and 30 home run potential in leading his team to a victory in the Under Armour All-American Game. Meadows has all of the physical tools and baseball fundamentals to be the first prep player selected in the 2013 Draft. With that being said Meadows does have some kinks to work out in his swing and he could use his lower-half better. Once a MLB team gets their hands on him however, he should have no troubles fixing any mechanical problems with his swing. If he reaches his full potential, Meadows will be a perennial All-Star in the outfield capable of 30/30 numbers.

Future Grades:




Tuesday, October 23, 2012

2013 MLB Draft: Top 10 Catchers

Starting off our set of Top 10 rankings for each position in the 2013 MLB Draft, we take a look at the top catchers heading into next year. The 2013 crop is almost completely dominated by prep catchers as many as five of them could be selected in the first round.

1. Jeremy Martinez, Mater Dei HS (CA)
2. Reese McGuire, Kentwood HS (CA)
3. Zack Collins, American Heritage HS (FL)
4. Chris Okey, Eustis HS (FL)
5. Nick Ciuffo, Lexington HS (SC)
6. Anthony Sherlag, Marist HS (GA)
7. Logan Koch, South Mecklengburg HS (NC)
8. Ronnie Healy, Jupiter HS (FL)
9. Jonathan Denney, Yukon HS (OK)
10. Jake Wise, Arkansas

Best of the rest: Brian Navaretto, Matt Roberts, Zane Evans, Adrian Chacon

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Miami Marlins 2012 Pre-Season Top 15 Prospects

Here is my Top 15 Prospect list for the Miami Marlins. The stats are from the 2011 season unless otherwise noted.

1. Christian Yelich, OF - 461 AB, .312/.388/.484, 15 HR, 77 RBI, 55 BB, 102 K, 32 SB 5 CS (A)

The easy choice for #1 here, Yelich showed his impressive skill-set in A ball last year. He has adapted very well to the outfield and he really has very few weaknesses right now. Miami is just praying he continues this success because he is easily the best prospect they have right now.

2. Marcell Ozuna, OF - 496 AB, .266/.330/.482, 23 HR, 71 RBI, 46 BB, 121 K, 17 SB 2 CS (A)

Ozuna has a very nice power/speed combo although the power was just a little down last year. He obviously needs to improve his strike-zone discipline but Yelich and him will provide an entertaining outfield in Jupiter.

3. Jose Fernandez, RHP - 13-1, 1.35 ERA, 93 IP, 51 H, 21 BB, 134 K (HS)

The big bodied 2011 1st-round pick has a fastball that reaches the mid 90's to go along with three other average or better pitches. He is old for a player right out of high school so I expect to see him start the year in Greensboro and he could move up quickly with good performance.

4. Matt Dominguez, 3B - 325 AB, .258/.312/.431, 12 HR, 55 RBI, 24 BB, 50 K, 0 SB 0 CS (AAA)

The story never changes with Dominguez, a Gold-Glove talent at 3B who just doesn't seem to hit enough to get an opportunity to show his defensive skills at the Major League level. He will go back to New Orleans while Hanley moves over to the hot corner in Miami.

5. J.T. Realmuto, C - 348 AB, .287/.347/.454, 12 HR, 49 RBI, 26 BB, 78 K, 13 SB 6 CS (A)

Quite possibly the most athletic player in the Marlins system, Realmuto showed some good power potential in 2011 along with the ability to hit for average. Needs some work behind the plate but has the tools to be an above-average defensive catcher.

6. Rob Rasmussen, LHP - 12-10, 3.64 ERA, 148.1 IP, 140 H, 71 BB, 118 K (A+)

An undersized lefty who struggled with control last year, Rasmussen has above-average secondary offerings which give him #3 starter upside. Could see a move to the bullpen in the future if his command doesn't improve.

7. Chad James, LHP - 5-15, 3.80 ERA, 149.1 IP, 173 H, 51 BB, 124 K (A+)

James is slowly but steadily improving and could be poised for a breakout year. If all works out he has the upside of a #2 starter with a plus fastball and solid secondary offerings.

8. Mason Hope, RHP - 2-0, 3.29 ERA, 27.1 IP, 27 H, 7 BB, 31 K (RK)

Overshadowed by 1st-round pick teammate Archie Bradley at their Oklahoma HS, Hope still has considerable upside and he really impressed with his command in his professional debut.

9. Adam Conley, LHP - 6-7, 3.50 ERA, 108 IP, 113 H, 27 BB, 83 K (College)

Drafted in the 2nd-round out of Washington State, Conley has a plus fastball for a lefty and a promising change-up that gives the Marlins another southpaw on this list with good upside.

10. Kyle Jensen, OF - 471 AB, .299/.373/.524, 27 HR, 76 RBI, 53 BB, 137 K, 1 SB 0 CS (A+/AA)

Jensen's future is 100% tied to his bat and he is going to need to continue to hit as he is already almost 24 years old. Will garner more respect if he continues to put up these numbers at the higher levels of the minors.

11. Charlie Lowell, LHP - 10-5, 2.79 ERA, 103.1 IP, 84 H, 40 BB, 124 K (College)

Lowell was a star at Wichita State and he is yet another lefty who has #3 starter potential with three above-average pitches. He is probably the safest bet to make the Majors as a starter of all the lefties on this list.

12. Jose Urena, RHP - 4-7, 4.33 ERA, 72.2 IP, 74 H, 29 BB, 48 K (SS)

Urena throws strikes with a plus fastball, but he has a long way to go with his secondary pitches. A full-year pitching at Greensboro will go a long way to proving whether he belongs on this list or not.

13. Noah Perio, 2B - 488 AB, .295/.323/.406, 6 HR, 52 RBI, 19 BB, 64 K, 15 SB 6 CS (A)

I am not as high on Perio as perhaps some other people are as I just don't see him having the tools to make it at the higher levels. He showed polish at the plate last year and will continue his progression at High-A.

14. Jose Ceda, RHP - 3-1, 1.36 ERA, 24 SV, 39.2 IP, 30 H, 13 BB, 53 K (AAA)

Has a big arm and he is ready to contribute in the back of the Marlins bullpen right now. With improved command he could easily be the closer of the future for Miami.

15. Austin Brice, RHP - 6-0, 2.96 ERA, 48.2 IP, 32 H, 33 BB, 55 K (RK)

Was very hard to hit in the GCL as Brice is a big righty with a plus fastball. Needs a lot of refinement especially with his control but you have to be excited about his potential if you're a Marlins fan.


Mark Canha, 1B - 384 AB, .276/..374/.529, 25 HR, 85 RBI, 59 BB, 85 K, 7 SB 3 CS (A)

Canha has always been a very underrated hitter even in College and all he did was rip the cover off the ball in Greensboro. Already turned 23 so he will be expected hit, but is a valuable 1B prospect if he keeps up the production.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Pittsburgh Pirates 2012 Pre-Season Top 15 Prospects

Here is my Top 15 Prospect list for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The stats are from the 2011 season unless otherwise noted.

1. Gerrit Cole, RHP - 6-8, 3.31 ERA, 114.1 IP, 103 H, 24 BB, 119 K (College)

The 2011 #1 pick has 3 plus pitches and he maintains his high 90's velocity deep into games. The only question is his command as it is just average right not, but that still doesn't drop him off the top spot. Could be in the Pirates Opening Day rotation in 2013.

2. Jameson Taillon, RHP - 2-3, 3.98 ERA, 92.2 IP, 89 H, 22 BB, 97 K (A)

Taillon still put up very good numbers despite being limited to mostly working on his fastball command in West Virginia. Expect him to take off as he incorporates his devastating secondary pitches more in-game.

3. Starling Marte, OF - 536 AB, .332/.370/.500, 12 HR, 50 RBI, 22 BB, 100 K, 24 SB 12 CS (AA)

Marte dominated this spring but still got sent down to AAA. He is showing power now to complement his plus hitting, plus speed, and plus-plus arm as he has the potential to be the complete package in the outfield. The only question for him is if he can improve that BB/K ratio, but he should still be very productive even if it stays where it is.

4. Josh Bell, OF - 96 AB, .552/.687/1.073, 14 HR, 55 RBI, 48 BB, 5 K, 19 SB 3 CS (HS)

Bell was the talk of the 2011 draft, signing for $5 million as 2nd round pick after saying he was definitely heading to Texas. He has plus hitting ability and plus-plus power potential from both sides of the plate. There are high expectations on his shoulders, but he has the talent to easily fulfill them.

5. Luis Heredia, RHP - 1-2, 4.75 ERA, 30.1 IP, 28 H, 19 BB, 23 K (RK)

Heredia has ace potential right up there with Cole and Taillon, but he is a long way away from fulfilling that ceiling. He already throws in the mid 90's and he has four potential above-average to plus pitches with a smooth delivery for a 6'7" 17-year old.

6. Robbie Grossman, OF - 490 AB, .294/.418/.451, 13 HR, 56 RBI, 104 BB, 111 K, 24 SB 10 CS (A+)

Grossman had a breakout year repeating High A+ ball, becoming the first minor league player since Nick Swisher to have 100 runs and 100 walks in a year. He then went to the AFL and continued to dominate. Grossman is recovering from a hamate injury, but he is expected to move to AA where his bat will really be tested.

7. Stetson Allie, RHP - 0-2, 6.58 ERA, 26 IP, 20 H, 29 BB, 28 K (SS)

If any other player put up these numbers they wouldn't even be considered a prospect, but Allie gets a pass because he has elite stuff on the mound. Reports so far this Spring are that his command is greatly improving, so I will give him the benefit of the doubt for now, but I think ultimately his road to the Majors is as a closer.

8. Kyle McPherson, RHP - 12-6, 2.96 ERA, 161 IP, 137 H, 27 BB, 142 K (A+/AA)

A late bloomer, McPherson had a phenomenal 2011 culminating in being named the Pirates Minor League Pitcher of the Year. He throws 3 solid pitches with excellent command and is very close to Major League ready.

9. Tony Sanchez, C - 402 AB, .241/.340/.318, 5 HR, 44 RBI, 47 BB, 76 K, 5 SB 5 CS (AA)

Sanchez struggled mightily last season after an injury-plagued 2010. Reports are he is hitting the ball with more authority this spring and he is still an above-average defensive catcher, but he needs to have a good year to get back into the top prospect picture.

10. Jeff Locke, LHP - 8-10, 3.70 ERA, 153.1 IP, 143 H, 55 BB, 139 K (AA/AAA)

Locke really came on late in the year dominating the International League in 5 starts before getting roughed up a bit in his debut in Pittsburgh. He looks like he could be a solid #4 starter with good command of four pitches and should see time in the Majors at some point in 2012.

11. Nick Kingham, RHP - 6-2, 2.15 ERA, 71 IP, 63 H, 15 BB, 47 K (SS)

Kingham, like most young Pirate pitchers, focused mainly on fastball command in his first professional season and had a very nice season. He showed the potential for a plus curveball, so Kingham is a player to watch this year as he incorporates more pitches in his arsenal. 

12. Zack Von Rosenberg, RHP - 5-9, 5.73 ERA, 125.2 IP, 143 H, 23 BB, 114 K (A)

Von Rosenberg got lit up by HR's during the first half of the year, but showed improvements late in the year and had a very good BB/K ratio. He is still very young and I think last year's first half struggles may have just been a slight bump on his developmental path. A player to watch for 2012.

13. Colton Cain, LHP - 6-8, 3.64 ERA, 106.1 IP, 92 H, 31 BB, 81 K (A)

Cain had some mild success in West Virginia last year, he throws a low 90's fastball with an improving curveball. One of those guys who could jump up 7 spots or drop off this list entirely depending on how he develops this season.

14. Bryan Morris, RHP - 3-4, 3.35 ERA, 78 IP, 72 H, 33 BB, 64 K (AA)

Morris had some success with a move to the bullpen and I think this is his future role with the organization. With a mid 90's sinker and power slider, Morris could pitch in Pittsburgh sooner rather than later.

15. Alen Hanson, SS/2B - 198 AB, .263/.352/.429, 2 HR, 35 RBI, 21 BB, 34 K, 24 SB 6 CS (RK)

Hanson is extremely young and raw at the plate, but he has plus speed, gap power, and solid actions at SS. A player I really want to see produce in full season ball.


Jarek Cunningham, 2B - 310 AB, .258/.320/.516, 15 HR, 51 RBI, 17 BB, 82 K, 5 SB 2 CS (A+)

Cunningham shows excellent power from the 2B position and he has enough athletic ability to play the position at the Major League level. The real question with him is can he make improvements on his poor strike-zone discipline and make enough contact to use that power.