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 quality lefthander who rose to attention via an outstanding performance in the Dominican Summer League, Rockie prospect Jayson Aquino is one of the safer bets in the system. With a solid, durable frame and an easy arm action, it's easy to see him moving up the system swiftly. His fastball lives in the low 90's with good movement and plus command, and his slider/curve (we're not sure what to call it yet) looks promising, but what's most exciting about Aquino is his changeup, one of the best in the Colorado system. When a player this young already has a change this good, it's a very very good omen.
More Scouting Book Info on Jayson Aquino
SB 371 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A high school pitcher already touching 92mph with a lively fastball, Phillies prospect Shane Watson also has a real plus curveball that could play well if he learns to disguise it a bit better. His change isn't anything at all yet, but as he's still some distance from Citizen's Bank, he'll have time to work on that.
More Scouting Book Info on Shane Watson
SB 372 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A strike-throwing righthander from the Dominican, Ariel Pena is a pitcher who uses a combination of raw heat and deceptive stuff to embarrass hitters. Spending most of 2011 at high-A Inland Empire, Pena went 10-6 while striking out almost 11 batters per game, mainly with his wipeout slider, though he did also walk nearly five. That mix of unhittable and wild has always been attached to Pena, though he's shown control improvements of late.
The good news when fishing for further upside with Pena is that after his 98mph fastball, the pitch he has the next-best handle on is a low-90's sinker, not the electric but erratic slider: that mix portends a future in the rotation, rather than the bullpen duty often assigned to hot but wild young arms.
More Scouting Book Info on Ariel Pena
SB 373 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Georgia high schooler Austin Meadows is an outfield phenom who will attract a great deal of first round attention in MLB's 2013 first-year player draft, if not first overall. A phenom with five tool talent, Austin is one of the fastest baserunners in the country, with speed that would make him one of the fastest players in pro baseball if he can get the rest of his game to half that level. His swing is promising, featuring a smooth and easy load with the makings of real plus power from the left side. He's been compared to players like Andre Ethier and Jacoby Ellsbury, and not without reason: few ballplayers blend across-the-board abilities like this. The only thing that might keep him from a minor league roster is 2014 is his commitment to Clemson University.
More Scouting Book Info on Austin Meadows
SB 374 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A high school outfielder expected to be drafted in the first round of 2013's draft, Clint Frazier is a five-tool athlete with an advanced bat for such a young player. Some scouts disaparage his small size, but his athleticism and performance rival (and in some cases exceed) his more universally-praised teammate Austin Meadows.
More Scouting Book Info on Clint Frazier
SB 375 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Max Kepler-Rozycki is a big, strong, German-born outfielder deep in the Minnesota Twins system. He gets high marks from scouts for his instincts, baseball build and raw tools. At the same time, he's very young and hasn't established much of a baseline in professional play yet: we haven't yet seen him in anything higher than Appy-League play (.262/.347/.366 in only 191 at-bats). In that time, Kepler showed decent contact ability and good speed, coupled with some pretty rough but promising defense. He's been tested in each outfield position, and seems most comfortable as a left-fielder, though that has to be written in the faintest of pencil at this point. Give Kepler a couple of years, then check back to see whether he's blossomed enough that we can start making puns about stars yet.
More Scouting Book Info on Max Kepler
SB 376 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A powerful left-handed bat in a Tiger system bereft of powerful prospects, outfielder Danry Vasquez is a tall Venezuelan with a propensity to swing at everything and hit most of it. While he looked overmatched in a brief taste of A-ball in 2012, his earlier track record and plus bat speed both suggest that he should be a solid hitter a couple of years from now. How and where the Tigers deploy him will dictate whether he'll be a fast-rising and useful asset, or a slow-developing but ultimately more valuable one.
More Scouting Book Info on Danry Vasquez
SB 377 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A second-round pick after two years at Oregon State, catcher Andrew Susac is the most promising backstop in the San Francisco minor league system. Behind the plate, he's a quality receiver with a strong arm, and he's very likely to remain a catcher in the future. At-bat, he's a solid gap hitter with a whiff of possible power to come, even if he's a bit swing-and-missy at present. Despite the college experienced, he's still a couple of years away from MLB. The Giants, of course, have no need to rush him.
More Scouting Book Info on Andrew Susac
SB 378 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A towering righthander who's as good at intimidating hitters as he is at actually throwing baseballs, Pirate prospect Tyler Glasnow might not be as well-known as some of Pittsburgh's other pitching prospects, but his ceiling is just as high. He doesn't command it perfectly, but isn't afraid to use it inside as well as outside, which is enough to keep hitters skittish. Glasnow shows a big curve on occasion that's impressive when it works, and a changeup that's rough but promising. He's firmly a prospect of the 'good stuff, needs to master it' type. Another couple of years of easy repetition is all that's needed here. Give him 500 more innings.
More Scouting Book Info on Tyler Glasnow
SB 379 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A big, lanky pitcher from California, Justin DeFratus has quietly climbed up an admittedly short prospect ladder to land among the top ranks of Phillie relief prospects. Today he's probably the best closer the team has available in the minor leagues. He's had two short tastes of major league life, and looks capable under pressire. Despite his small-town personality, he doesn't seem easy to rattle. If Jon Papelbon falters in Philly, he should be ready to ascend, and given the nature of both Papelbon and Philadelphia, we have to think those odds aren't very long. His official team bio claims he's a switch hitter, but we don't expect we'll see him digging into the box from either side very often.
More Scouting Book Info on Justin De Fratus
SB 380 BA SC BP SN ES ML
370 to 380 of 650 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013