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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A Dominican phenom who was hotly pursued by the Mariners and Yankees for several years, young Edward Salcedo finally signed a free agent contract with the Atlanta Braves in the spring of 2010, more than making up for the team's absence of a first-round pick in the 2010 Draft. A big, strong infielder with soft hands and a very quick bat, Salcedo is currently a gap-to-gap line drive hitter, though his size and strength project out to significant power in the future, as scouts who compare him to Hanley Ramirez and Alex Rodriguez are applying only a little exaggeration.
The (certified) 20 year old appears talented enough to stick at shortstop, despite a sloppiness that comes with youth, but if he doesn't, his bat is so advanced that he will remain a top prospect, even at third base or in right field. His prime won't really start until 2014 or so, though he could get a look-see sooner than that.
More Scouting Book Info on Edward Salcedo
SB 141 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A college ace at Georgia Tech, lefthander Jedidiah Custer Bradley compiled a three year record of 18-11, 4.62, though it was his 7-3, 3.49 final season that got him a ticket to the first round of the MLB draft, when he was selected 15th overall by Milwaukee. While his 94mph heater isn't anything special, his advanced command of the changeup is what moved him to the highest levels of the draft, and it's that same change that will get him to MLB sooner or later. Probably sooner.
More Scouting Book Info on Jed Bradley
SB 142 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Casey Kelly is big, strong pitcher who came to San Diego from Boston in the Adrian Gonzalez trade. Young Kelly is already 6-3 and 200lbs, with more size and strength to come as he fills out.
He took an uncomfortable step backwards with the Red Sox back in 2010, which probably precipitated their sudden willingness to part with the once-untouchable asset, but his stuff is still there, just waiting for his ability to catch up: Kelly's fastball was rated the best heatuh in the Red Sox system in 2010. And so was his curve. And so was his changeup. Put all that together with his plus control, and it seems pretty clear we're looking at a possible Padres success story. Like any pitching prospect, he needs luck on his side to stay healthy, and if he gets that, he'll be a solid number two or three starter, and maybe even a future ace.
More Scouting Book Info on Casey Kelly
SB 143 BA 45 SC 75 BP 77 SN ES 60 ML
Cheslor. A Nicaraguan third baseman who seems skilled enough to stick at the position, the Royals' young slugger looked pretty darn good in his first look at A-ball in 2011 before falling a bit back to earth in 2012, though to be fair to the man, he was one of the youngest players in the league. He'll spend some time in higher A ball this year, most likely, and if all goes well be hitting AA pitchers every day in 2014. After that, well, it should be a lot of fun ahead in KC in the years to come.
More Scouting Book Info on Cheslor Cuthbert
SB 144 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A slight shortstop with plus instincts, Arizona prospect Chris Owings could see a move to second base in the near future. Signed out of high school in South Carolina after being selected 41st overall in the 2009 draft, Owings is a gap-to-gap hitter with a bit of pop. He's decent defensively, and shows above average speed on the bases. He's not a likely All Star, but he could be a competent bench or utility player in the bigs at any time.
More Scouting Book Info on Chris Owings
SB 145 BA SC BP 81 SN ES ML
We see a lot of great names here at Scouting Book, but every once and awhile there's still one that makes us do a double-take. This offensive-minded infielder's name (nephew of Indians coach Rouglas) is really named Rougned (RYOO-nyed) Odor. We're hoping that was a little less teaseworthy for a kid growing up in Venezuela than it would have been in Lubbock.
An All-Star for the Venezuelan National Team in 2009, Odor is a short infielder with good fielding instincts, a strong arm, and a sweet swing from the left side of the plate. He's a long way from the majors, with a whole life of A-ball ahead of him first.
More Scouting Book Info on Rougned Odor
SB 146 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An Iron Mike style strike throwing machine from Venezuela, righthander Jose Campos looked awfully polished in his first taste of Yankee ball in 2012, averaging a 1.15 WHIP across five A-league starts before succumbing to injury. Campos's 95-98mph fastball comes with pinpoint control, making him more of a strikethrower than a stuff pitcher at present... not that that's anything at all to complain about.
If he can grind his way through the A levels this year while refining his course curve and so-so slider, and can maintain even half his crazy strikeout to walk rate, he should be primed for AA in 2013. Seattle was so full of premium pitching prospects that they decided to shed Campos in the effort to pick up slugger Jesus Montero in 2012's spring. In New York, Campos can and should still simmer another year or two.
More Scouting Book Info on Jose Campos
SB 147 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The best batting eye in the Marlins' system, ex-National Jake 'The Choirboy' Smolinski is a slow-growing outfield prospect that a few scouts seem to have forgotten about, though not for any good reason. A solid all-around player, he'll pop a few homers and steal a few bases, but the .388 OBP with 78 walks (!) he posted at Jacksonville in 2012 is pretty much the story on what he will give the Marlins.
Smolinksi's lack of stature (it's not hard to guess what his detractors call him) or of a standout tool might bore scouts, but he does pretty much everything well, with a mix of average-to-better tools across the board, including tasty morsels of both power and speed that should play well on the ragtag Marlins roster. He deserves a spot on the depleted Marlins roster; we like left field.
More Scouting Book Info on Jake Smolinski
SB 148 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A lefty who can touch 96mph with a sizzling fastball, Toronto's Daniel Norris is a bit of a sleeper who should be gaining a lot more attention in the months and years to come. Norris already complements his heat with a hammer curve that can be devastating, and if he manages to get a third pitch up to even major-league average, he'll be an ace on a team known for discovering gems.
More Scouting Book Info on Dan Norris
SB 149 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A big power lefty from Kent State who's already had TJ surgery, Diamondback prospect Andrew Chafin was an A-round selection in the 2011 draft, though many expected him to go sooner than that. His fastball is a 94mph offering with a nice natural sink, perfect for Chase Field, and he locates it well inside and out to frustrate all types of batter. His secondary pitches, a curve and slider, are average and a bit erratic, but he'll have time to refine those, along with his underused and underdeveloped change. While he closed during his early days in college, he should now be considered a middle-rotation candidate as long as his bionic arm stays attached.
More Scouting Book Info on Andrew Chafin
SB 150 BA SC BP SN ES ML
140 to 150 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013