Top Baseball Prospects for 2013
Now updated for 2013's Top Prospects
Scouting Book's Top Prospects list is a Combined List, a calculated summary of the overall valuations of the entire prospect universe.
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SB 130 BA SC BP 94 SN ES ML
A nominal third baseman, Texas prospect Joey Gallo should probably be considered a first base or DH prospect, as his fieldwork isn't anything that will get him into MLB anytime soon. His bat his tremendous though, with huge power to all fields, probably more than any other prospect in the system: that 1.169 OPS in Rookie ball portends a step up to A-levels in 2013. With a long swing and iffy judgement, though, he's got some development to do before he's ready to join in the Texas thunder.
More Scouting Book Info on Joey Gallo
SB 131 BA SC 95 BP SN ES ML
A second round (2011) draft pick of the Atlanta Braves, shortstop Nick Ahmed moved to the Diamondbacks when the team removed Justin Upton's salary and headaches from their makeup. A sharp-hitting, well-heeled infielder who's progressing rapidly, he's the shadow on Didi Gregorious's heels, and he could be a starting shortstop in MLB by late 2014.
More Scouting Book Info on Nick Ahmed
SB 132 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An 11th round selection by the Dodgers back in 2010, outfielder Joc Pederson has already far exceeded the expectations of most scouts. A late signee, he didn't really taste pro ball until 2011, when he raked a .353/.429/.568 line at rookie-level Ogden in the Pioneer League, impressing coaches with his work ethic and ability to use his raw tools effectively: the young man stole 24 of 29 bases and played an intelligent, competent outfield while being tested at all three positions.
Last year, Pederson was bumped to high-A Ranco Cucamonga and rose to the challenge, posting an impressive .313/.396/.516 line and stealing another 26 bags. He did, however, fall victim to better pickoffs and stronger catchers at the higher level of play, as he was caught fourteen times. A patient hitter who isn't afraid to take his walks, Pederson is well on his way to becoming a well-rounded ballplayer who should be above-average in all aspects of the game. There might not be an obvious space for him in L.A. right now, but baseball has a way of making space for those with talent enough to get them to the Show in the first place. If he puts in another year like his last two, he'll be on top of the prospect lists next time around.
More Scouting Book Info on Joc Pederson
SB 133 BA SC BP SN ES ML 85
A slight righthander who gained a lot of attention with a blisteringly hot first half of 2011, Thornburg looked really good at AA Huntsville in 2012 (3.00, 1.08, 71:24) and pretty darn acceptable after a promotion to AAA Nashville (3.58, 1.35, 42:13). He's been striking out more than a batter per inning for a few years now, which means it's just about time to give him a chance in MLB. Later this year.
More Scouting Book Info on Tyler Thornburg
SB 134 BA SC 79 BP 100 SN ES ML
A righthanded pitcher from San Pedro de Macoris, DR (his parents must have missed the shortstop delivery truck), Alexander Colome is a right-handed pitcher in the Rays system. Improving his control somewhat last season, Colome struck out 90 and walked 43 in 92 innings split between AA and AAA
His 94mph heat is probably enough to guarantee a comfy career all on its own, but it won't have to: his second pitch is a power curve that's almost ready, though the control could still improve further. He could see time in an MLB uniform this year, though 2014 would be a sweeter target.
More Scouting Book Info on Alex Colome
SB 135 BA SC 98 BP SN ES 81 ML
Originally drafted by the Rangers, Righthander Joe Wieland is today a premium Padres pitching prospect with his sights set squarely on San Diego. A tall and thin kid with easy gas, Wieland works comfortably at 90-94mph, spiced with a genuine plus curve. Even his change shows above-average flash.
With exceptionally good command and control, he brought all that quality stuff to bear in 2012, making six starts for the Padres and posting a veteran-looking 1.27 WHIP and 24:9 strikeout to walk ratio. A fly-ball/strikeout pitcher, he should improve further in 2013 and fit perfectly into San Diego's style of play, not to mention that ballpark. If he's not in the rotation to open 2013, he will be by the end of the season.
More Scouting Book Info on Joe Wieland
SB 136 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Don't let that ugly .175/.303/.342 line from his Wrigleyville cup of coffee influence you too much. Brett Jackson is still a toolsy centerfielder who will have a chance to blossom in slow-growing Chicago. A well-rounded player without a single defining skill, the .297/.388/.551 line he stroked at AAA Iowa in 2011 is more typical of his results in pro baseball to date. Jackson's mix of plus speed and mature plate discipline portends a leadoff role, though his developing power might make him slot into the six hole just fine, too. He's primed and equipped for an opportunity in MLB, probably the only Cubs prospect really ready to do so, so he should get another chance in 2013.
More Scouting Book Info on Brett Jackson
SB 137 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Nobody expected young Josh Bell to sign in 2011, which is probably why he fell to the Pirates in round two of the draft. But one should never underestimate the allure of five million shiny dollars, and young Bell shocked other managers by inking with the Pirates and passing on the University of Texas. Bell immediately became the biggest bat in a Pirate system that's very lacking in offensive muscle, but his primo status doesn't only come from relative dearth: he's a valid top prospect all on his own merit.
More Scouting Book Info on Josh Bell
SB 138 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Victor Sanchez, the prize of the international free agent market in 2011, is a big-armed righthander who's growing up in a Seattle system that's positively overflowing with that particular blessing. A gifted athlete with a loose, easy motion and natural movement on his ball, he was a star in Venezuela from the time he was 12 years old, dominating hitters four years older than that with a 90mph fastball and a downright unfair curve. As a sixteen year old in showcases, Sanchez demonstrated he could hit 92 with that heater, not to mention the beginnings of a slider that has since blossomed into a genuine plus pitch. He's even shown indications of a working changeup, which is remarkable in such a young pitcher.
In his first taste of American ball at low-A Everett in 2012, Sanchez went 6-2, 3.18 over fifteen starts, striking out 69 hitters in 85 innings of work. He's still very young, of course, and his body will need to grow in just the right way to support the workload his arm is about to encounter. But right now he looks like the best Latin American pitching prospect we've seen since Julio Teheran, who was himself probably the best since some guy you may remember named Felix.
More Scouting Book Info on Victor Sanchez
SB 139 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Now an outfielder for the Athletics, ex-USC shortstop Grant Green had a chance to be the #1 overall draft pick in 2009 until Stephen Strasburg's moment carried him into the top ranking. Green has an above average arm and plus range, and he seems to have taken to the outfield very well, though of course his prospect status takes a hit from the move to a less-valuable position.
From grass or dirt, though, remains a big but agile fielder with leadership skills, superior plate discipline and the makings of above-average power. Green hit .291/.343/.408 in AA two years ago and an even better .296/.338/.458 in AAA last season, which means he's ready to become one of the many moving parts in Bob Melvin's complex Athletic machinery at any time. He's still got a couple of rough edges, both in the new business of outfielding and the old business of baserunning smarts, but the biggest pieces of his game are already well in place, which means it's full steam ahead for Oakland in 2013.
More Scouting Book Info on Grant Green
SB 140 BA SC BP SN ES ML
130 to 140 of 650 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013