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.

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