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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The Nats' second round pick in 2010, lefthander Sammy Solis brings a competent fastball and reasonable curve from a delivery that's almost sidearm, but it's his straight change that is his best, and that's the plus offering that should be his ticket to MLB success. He took a solid step toward that future in 2011, when he worked his way up from A-ball into high-A Potomac, posting a 6-2 record with a 2.72 ERA and a nice 1.28 WHIP at the higher level.
More Scouting Book Info on Sammy Solis
SB 221 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 222 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A mature prospect capable of playing on an MLB roster right now, Jacob deGrom is a wiry righthander from Stetson with a plus fastball and developing stuff. A converted shortstop, deGrom is still learning his secondary pitches. He seemed to blossom in 2013, blasting his way up to AAA in record time. After abandoning the hard slider, and with it his obvious bullpen ticket, he seems to have found a good handle on a natural curve, and if he can throw it with consistency, he'll get a look in MLB sometime soon, either as a spot starter or long reliever.
More Scouting Book Info on Jake deGrom
SB 223 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A Cuban outfielder who signed late in 2012, Baltimore prospect Henry Urrutia is a line-drive hitter with pretty good discipline (for a Cuban hitter). The son of Cuban star Ermidelio Urrutia, Henry lacks plus speed but isn't a liability on the basepaths, and while it's a question how much power he'll show in US ball, his .397/.461/.597 and twelve homer line in his final year in Cuba sure looks good from here. Of course, our rational side is more impressed with the 32:23 walk-to-strikeout ratio. He'll be tested in AA this year, though he may start in A ball first.
More Scouting Book Info on Henry Urrutia
SB 224 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An thin but athletic southpaw with a nasty breaking ball to complement a well-controlled fastball, ex-Nationals prospect Robbie Ray projects as a potent bullpen weapon once he builds up his strength a bit. A 12th round draft selection, Ray has looked a lot better than that, striking out 86 A-level hitters in 105 innings of work at Potomac last season. He's still a couple of years away from any potential dominating performances in the Majors, but he's certainly a valuable asset, considering how quality lefty relievers are so hard to come by in MLB.
More Scouting Book Info on Robbie Ray
SB 225 BA SC BP SN ES ML 97
A classic 'tools' player, BA's 2007 Youth Player of the Year Tim Beckham seemed like a safe pick for Tampa Bay as the #1 overall pick of the 2008 draft, if you can ever consider high school players 'safe'. While he's still a year or two away from breaking into the big leagues and some of the shimmer has faded from his aura, he's been making measurable progress on the farm, increasing his baserunning smarts and showing improving patience at the plate in the last two seasons.
Beckham still shows most of the hands and footwork needed for shortstop, too, and he hasn't yet physically outgrown the position, though he may need to move to second base to make way for Tampa's hotter shortstop prospects. If that happens, his bat might still carry him anyway: Beckham still has very quick wrists and an effortless-looking swing that could translate to 'easy power' down the road. He probably won't be the same superstar he was once projected to be, but he could be a useful piece of an MLB club soon.
More Scouting Book Info on Tim Beckham
SB 226 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A righthanded fireplug of a pitcher with the kind of name headline-writers dream about, Brewer prospect David Goforth is a U Mississippi alum drafted way back in 2011's 7th round. With a short, strong arm, Goforth can hit 99mph on the gun, though he's better when he switches to a darting cut fastball at about 92mph. His change and curve aren't anything special, but it shouldn't matter: everything about Goforth screams power reliever.
More Scouting Book Info on David Goforth
SB 227 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A handsome, linebacker-like outfielder from Stanford, Austin Williams is one of the premium offensive prospects available in the 2013 MLB Draft. Williams passed on the Cardinals out of high school, electing to attend Stanford instead. As a college hitter, he's shown exceptional discipline and on-base ability (almost .400 in his sophomore year), coupled with good speed and developing power that hasn't yet translated into light-tower shots, but probably will. With a strong college performance near the end of the season, he rose into the second round of the draft, where he was snapped up by hitting hungry Seattle.
More Scouting Book Info on Austin Wilson
SB 228 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A late-blooming pitching prospect who's just now learning to pitch from his very big and strong frame after recovering from shoulder surgery a couple of years back, the Nationals' own Nathan Karns looks like he could step up into MLB soon. In 116 innings split between low and high-A ball last season, the right-handed Karns showed mastery of his 98mph fastball, turning in a scintillating 2.17 ERA, 1.01 WHIP season. A new ability to throw a quality curve for strikes and a developing change also helped him strike out nearly twelve batters per nine innings of work. A bit under the radar thanks to his advanced age, Karns could be a surprise savior if the Nats suffer injury this year. If not, he's on track for a storybook rookie debut at the age of 26 next season.
More Scouting Book Info on Nathan Karns
SB 229 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Aaron Blair, a 21st round selection last season, spent the interim playing Cape Cod baseball before returning to the 2013 draft. Blair, a power righthander, can reach 95mph with his fastball, and it often looks better than that thanks to his better-than-average change. He doesn't yet command his curve with the same confidence he brings to other offerings, but overall he's a good pitcher, not just a raw arm, and he should continue to develop in the years to come.
More Scouting Book Info on Aaron Blair
SB 230 BA SC BP SN ES ML
220 to 230 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013