Top Baseball Prospects for 2015
Now updated for 2015'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 first-round selection by the Giants in 2006, Kiker has been up and down during his development as a Ranger, and lately there's been a little more down than up in his game. He still has a real plus fastball, which once touched 97 but today lives closer to 94, and a better than average changeup. The Rangers need to see him focus and sharpen his command before promoting him.
More Scouting Book Info on Kasey Kiker
SB 221 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A smart control lefty with a 91mph fastball and better than average change, McGeary won't overpower anyone, but he has shown advanced, Glavine-like command of his pitches and can add and subtract with professional acumen. He's a tasty tease to debut in the Washington rotation come 2015 or so, but first he'll need to work his way back through high and double-A ball after suffering injuries and setbacks the last two season.
More Scouting Book Info on Jack McGeary
SB 222 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A solid but unspectacular righthander in the Oakland system, James Simmons is a mature prospect who still has a shot at MLB, but only if many cards fall his way. Leaning heavily on his heavy 92mph fastball and a workable change, he needs to add a significant third pitch if he's to make it in the rotation. At present, his curve and slider are below average offerings.
More Scouting Book Info on James Simmons
SB 223 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A compact, powerful bat with an explosive short swing, youngster Angel Salome probably isn't a long-term catching option anymore, but he's still an interesting prospect. He's a bit rough around the edges, but there's not much keeping Salome from putting on a Mariner-blue chest protector right now, if only as a backup.
More Scouting Book Info on Angel Salome
SB 224 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A two-way player drafted by the Cubs as a pitcher in 2008, Randy 'Jay' Jackson is a sturdy righthander with a heavy 93mph fastball and an average curve. Jackson went 8-14 with a 5.34 ERA in 26 starts with AAA Iowa this season. Originally selected by the Cubs in the ninth round of the 2008 Draft, he's got some 2013 sleeper potential as a fifth (or sixth) starter, but if the Cubs need a power righthanded arm in the bullpen sooner than that, the kid they (should) call 'Dawg' could get a look-see a lot sooner than that.
More Scouting Book Info on Jay Jackson
SB 225 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Widely seen as the best high school athlete available in the 2009 draft, outfielder Donavan Tate drew comparisons to Tim Beckham for his tools-to-the-wall talent and approach. Unfortunately, his progress since then has been eerily similar to Beckham's in terms of disappointment. The Padres will probably continue to move him slowly, one level per year, until he's ready for the Bigs around 2015. He's raw, of course, and very young, but he has a big, strong build and a swing that looks suited to major league power someday, once he fills out and adds muscle. Of course, San Diego's ballpark would hide so much of that anyway, so Tate might be better off working on his base-stealing skills: his success rate is still atrociously poor.
More Scouting Book Info on Donavan Tate
SB 226 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A very big, sturdy lefthander from California, Hobgood is a fastball-curve pitching machine who projects as an innings-eating workhorse someday. He's a few years away, though, and he'll definitely need to develop a changeup before he can be set loose on advanced hitters. His velocity, a concern in 2010, improved in 2011 and 2012, though he's still struggling with command and conditioning issues. Since he's still got all the raw stuff he ever showed before, though, a new coach or a random light bulb could turn him into a top prospect overnight. A frustrating bundle of potential.
More Scouting Book Info on Matt Hobgood
SB 227 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A Vanderbilt product from Carefree, Arizona, righthander Brett Jacobson showed sky-high potential but fell to the Tigers in the fourth round of the 2008 draft due to some rough college outings in his junior season. He's been around since, but still reeks of potential far beyond his own results. That 95mph fastball has hard sink, and the combination of his max-effort approach and deceptive over-the-top delivery always suggested a bullpen role in his future. He'll need another year or two of coaching before he's in any kind of game shape.
More Scouting Book Info on Brett Jacobson
SB 228 BA SC BP SN ES ML
If any prospect ever needed a nickname, it's ex-Cub righthander Chris (J) Carpenter. A big 6-4 power arm out of Kent State, Carpenter's early Tommy John surgery kept him dangling until the 2008 draft's third round. Carpenter, who we're now calling CJ, was deployed mainly as a reliever in Chicago, and his very big fastball certainly works good in that context, sometimes breaking 100mph in short use. When he dials it down to the 94mph range for longer outings, though, he gets additional movement and sink, contributing to a high ground ball rate that might be more beneficial (and more democratic than all those boring, fascist strikeouts.)
CJ's breaking balls are similarly two-faced: his very good slider is highly effective as a bullpen weapon, while his underappreciated changeup, a quality pitch in its own right, beckons him back to a starting rotation someday. He's ready as a capable MLB reliever right now, but a little time and care could make him better. If he can curtail his command issues even a little, for example, and throw all his pitches both on target and with effect at the same time, he could be a premium arm. But as long as his ability to harness his stuff is dodgy, he seems locked-in as something of a tweener. Sometimes change itself is good, of course, so maybe a new coaching and training regime in Boston can help shake him into a better configuration, one in which his potential can be maximized.
More Scouting Book Info on Chris Carpenter
SB 229 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A nasty lefty who's gained velocity along with body mass, the now overpowering Dominican Pedro Figueroa is looking to break into the rich ranks of top Oakland pitching prospects. He's struck out 388 hitters in 431 minor league innings to date, though he's been doing that without much finesse, as his 1.45 WHIP and high walk rate demonstrate. His secondary pitches haven't been great, but 99mph heat from the left side is enough to be very very valuable, as his 2012 callup should demonstrate. He'll probably start 2013 in the minors but almost certainly see MLB time again later in the season.
More Scouting Book Info on Pedro Figueroa
SB 230 BA SC BP SN ES ML
220 to 230 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013