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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A low nineties fastball doesn't usually mean much, but when you can bring it from the left side along with a high-quality curve and changeup, you're well on the road to success in MLB. Mariner prospect Tyler Pike looked very good in 2012, striking out 57 in only 50 innings of rookie ball. He won't be up anytime soon, but if he lives up to his early promise, he'll be striking out his share of major leaguers sooner or later. In the mean time, he will be given every chance to refine that arsenal in a minor league rotation for the next four years or so, with the bullpen as an easy backup plan: there's no shortage of job options for a lefthander with quality stuff.
More Scouting Book Info on Tyler Pike
SB 311 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Vanderbilt's best starter in his last season of work there, lefthander Sam Selman leans on a mid-nineties fastball, which he commanded well enough to strike out more than a batter per inning. That fastball won't be enough for MLB, of course, so expect Selman to work on his cutter and change in the minors for a good season or two before he's ready for action in KC. If the Royals have the patience to leave him in a starting rotation, mid-2015 is his most likely arrival timeframe. Of course, with strikeout ability like Selman has from the left side... well, it's going to be hard to keep him out of a bullpen role if the Royals find themselves in a pennant race. Visions of David Price, 2008 edition, spring easily to mind here.
More Scouting Book Info on Sam Selman
SB 312 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An offensive-minded infielder from Japan's Pacific League, Kensuke Tanaka slashed .300/.350/.363 with in 505 plate appearances last season for the Nippon-Ham Fighters. Widely known as a solid glove man, he also showed plus speed and basestealing ability early in his career, though that has faded as he's matured.
More Scouting Book Info on Kensuke Tanaka
SB 313 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Onelki Garcia (Speck) is a very large Cuban lefthander with a very big strikeout fastball. In Cuba's major league (Serie Nacional) in 2009-2010, Garcia made 15 starts and posted a 3.40 ERA with 74 strikeouts in 85 innings. Of course, he also walked 51. Surprisingly subject to the MLB draft after living in legal limbo for a year, he was selected by the Dodgers in round three. Garcia features a 96mph fastball that is occasionally good, but shows little movement and often comes in erratic and flat due to his awkward delivery. His curve tells a similar story, only more emphatically: it's occasionally great, with flashes of true plus movement, but usually mediocre. nobody's seen much of his changeup yet. He only threw two innings at Rancho Cucamonga last season, but in those two innings, he struck out four batters. The Dodgers obviously see something special in Garcia, though, and are expected to break him down before building him back up again, hopefully with some cleaner mechanics.
More Scouting Book Info on Onelkis Garcia
SB 314 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Cal Poly's Friday starter in 2014, Philadelphia draftee Matt Imhoff is a tall, strong lefthander who uses his height advantage to slice fastballs down and in on hitters with controlled abandon, frequently mixing in a slider that's more of a cutter. He's got that ever-elusive changeup to develop further, but he's otherwise a very good pitcher, with superior command and control, and no visible weaknesses.
More Scouting Book Info on Matt Imhof
SB 315 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The Indians' Bob Feller Award winner in 2011, smallish righthander Chen-Chang Lee projects as a potent bullpen weapon for the Indians in the near future. Lee was signed as an international free agent after gaining attention at the 2008 Olympics, but lost a year to TJ surgery recently that dropped him from many radar screens.
Lee is a hard-thrower with good command of a genuine plus slider that he delivers from a deceptive low angle. He's probably a middle-reliever, though he could be a very good one of those: just the thing a manager always wants to have, in order to get through a high-leverage batter or two.
More Scouting Book Info on Chen Chang Lee
SB 316 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A big, lefty-swinging slugger from Dominican Republic, Ranger prospect Ronald Guzman put together a decent Sally League debut in 2013, slashing .272 /.325/.387 as an eighteen year old while playing a competent first base. His offensive tools are good ones, with a quick, line-drive angle of attack and swing mechanics that keep his body square on the ball for maximum effect. His game-sense and savvy earn high praise from scouts, and it shows in his preference to hit the ball hard to all fields rather than spend every at-bat reaching for the bleachers like so many young sluggers. Though he's a below-average runner, he's not much of a liability on the bases thanks to his heads-up style of play. He needs some polish and experience, but he looks like a decent first base option for the Rangers once Prince Fielder turns into a full-time DH.
More Scouting Book Info on Ronald Guzman
SB 317 BA SC BP SN ES ML
One of the top international prospects in the Milwaukee system, young shortstop Orlando Arcia looked a little bit too good for the Dominican League last summer, slashing .294/.387/.459 with six homers and thirteen steals in two months of action. He also walked more often than he struck out. Big and strong for his age (hmm), it looks like he has a lot of room left to fill out, which might move him off shortstop, where he's raw but capable.
More Scouting Book Info on Orlando Arcia
SB 318 BA SC BP SN ES ML
One of the very best college catchers of 2014, Giant prospect Aramis Garcia draws rave reviews for not just his ability, but his baseball intelligence. A lean, powerful line-drive hitter, he's expected to grow more into a slugger as he fills out. Behind the plate, he looks solid: a good defender with excellent maneuverability and blocking skills, his arm is better than average. What we're really looking forward to, though, is how he learns and handles the art of game-calling: Garcia is the kind of catcher who will be a student of both pregame strategy and in-game tactics, and he's likely to outsmart a lot of hitters throughout his career.
More Scouting Book Info on Aramis Garcia
SB 319 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A young phenom infielder currently raising eyebrows in the Cleveland system, Dorssys is a 2012 IFA signee that the Indians brass is cautiously excited about. Dorssys destroyed rookie ball as a 17 year old, outclassing his teenaged opponents to the tune of an ungodly .355/.404/.610 batting line. He was a bit of a mess in the field, making 20 errors in only 31 Rookie League games at short, but we like to think he'll develop enough glove to at least man second base. He does display quick feet and a strong arm, so the Indians will give him plenty of time to soften up those hands in the next couple of years. Expect him to spend all of 2013 in A ball, and if he dominates those pitchers, AA in 2014 and MLB soon thereafter. Of course, there are many opportunities to stumble along the way, so temper your excitement for now.
More Scouting Book Info on Dorssys Paulino
SB 320 BA SC BP SN ES ML
310 to 320 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013