Top Baseball Prospects for 2014
Now updated for 2014'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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Jeimer Candelario is a corner infield prospect who's been rapidly moving up the planning charts for the Chicago Cubs. After showboating in the DSL as a seventeen year old in 2011, Candelario found his level in A ball in 2012, slashing .281/.345/.396 with 20 extra-base hits in 71 games with Boise. The following season, at A-level Kane County, Candelario produced at a respectable .256/.346/.396, easily adjusting to the better pitching. Questions linger about whether Candy can really handle the defensive requirements of third base. If he can't, there's a different question: can he hit with enough power to man first base productively? These questions will get answered over the next couple of years as he attempts to work his way into high and double-A ball. Lots of upside here, though there are many potential pitfalls along the way, too.
Full Scouting Report for Jeimer Candelario
SB 201 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The Topps Player of the Year for the (A-level) Midwest League in 2011, outfielder Rymer Liriano is a five-tool talent on the fast-track to major league duty in San Diego. His 2012 numbers (.251/.335/.377) might look inferior to his track record, but it was the youngster's first crack at AA, so it's actually pretty impressive. The Dominican native's award-winning minor league career is a tantalizing showcase of speed and power, just the thing the Padres could use at the top of the order. If he lights up AA pitching this spring, he could be in the majors by midseason. If not, he's still a near-lock for the 2014 lineup.
Full Scouting Report for Rymer Liriano
SB 202 BA SC BP SN ES ML
One of baseball's top college hitters in 2010 (.344/.481/.656 at Clemson, with a homer every 12 at-bats), outfielder Kyle Parker is a big part of the Rockies plan to pump up their offense as they return to contention in the years to come. Parker, who slashed .308/.415/.562 with 23 homers in 102 California League (high-A) games, has plus power from the right side hat will only look better in Coors, and soon. Like many of the best Rockies prospects, he's due to arrive for real sometime in 2014, though we should see a taste of him in September.
Full Scouting Report for Kyle Parker
SB 203 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.
Full Scouting Report for Brett Jackson
SB 204 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A smart ballplayer who makes up for iffy tools with good skills and a hard-working approach to the game, Cleveland outfielder Tyler Naquin has a pretty lefthanded swing that can already pepper the gaps, with the potential for more power to come as he grows into his body a little. In the field he has a good glove and a strong arm, good enough for a corner spot already.
Full Scouting Report for Tyler Naquin
SB 205 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A strong, squat hitter with a wide open stance and plus bat speed, Cal-Poly's Mitch Haniger looks like a solid part of a future Brewer offense. With accolades from all sides concerning his athleticism and professional demeanor, Hanny's only real shortcoming is a lack of speed, though good instincts and a strong arm have served him well in outfield duty to date. While there's never a shortage of possible road bumps on the way to MLB, he sure looks like a future star from here.
Full Scouting Report for Mitch Haniger
SB 206 BA SC 80 BP SN ES ML
A sturdy righthander first drafted by the Orioles out of high school in 2010, Alex Gonzalez reentered and was selected by the Rangers in 2013's first round. Working from a consistent 3/4 arm slot, Gonzalez repeats his delivery very well, mixing a mid-90's fastball with a superior, late-breaking slider. Seen by some as a reliever, his future as a starting pitcher will hinge on whether or not his changeup, currently below-average, can be refined into a reliable offering. One big plus in his favor: he's known for maintaining his good stuff deep into ballgames.
Full Scouting Report for Alex Gonzalez
SB 207 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Pitching prospect Trevor May, a sometimes-forgotten part of the December 2012 trade for Ben Revere, has seen his spotlight turn a bit brighter thanks to his arrival in an organization well-known for developing quality arms.
Not that he needs all that much more development: as a Phillies prospect, May was already showing three good pitches with regularity, and he's already had some pretty eye-opening success at low levels of minor league ball. He stumbled a bit when first faced with higher level batters, but that sort of adjustment period is common, and it shouldn't scare the Twins or their fans. May remains a very solid and still-developing athlete. His fastball is a standard 92-94 offering with heavy sink, and his secondary pitches (a hammer curve and a straight change) are almost ready for more advanced hitters.
Full Scouting Report for Trevor May
SB 208 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The Sox second-round pick in 2009 out of high school, outfielder Trayce Thompson is a 6-4, 200 pound righthanded masher from Rancho Margarita, California. The son of ex-NBA player Mychal Thompson, Trayce is a high-quality athlete with a solid set of tools. Both his power and speed project as possible plus tools. Hopefully, the shortage of quality players on the Chicago farm won't force the Sox to move him too quickly, because while he's ready enough, he'll be even better with a bit more grooming.
Full Scouting Report for Trayce Thompson
SB 209 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A dominant closer at Texas Tech, Rockies righthander Chad Bettis is exactly the right kind of pitcher to survive at Coors Field. He mixes a heavy and loose fastball with just enough of an effective mid-80's slider that prevents hitters from making square contact... the scariest kind of contact.
His time in the minors to date has been no challenge at all. Most recently he racked up 184 strikeouts in 170 innings in the high-A Cal League, posting a lovely 1.10 WHIP in doing so. He's being groomed as a full-time starter, at least for now, and he still has to master AA, but at this rate, he'll be banging on the door in Colorado in 2014.
Full Scouting Report for Chad Bettis
SB 210 BA SC BP SN ES ML
200 to 210 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013