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 big power lefty from Kent State who's already had TJ surgery, Diamondback prospect Andrew Chafin was an A-round selection in the 2011 draft, though many expected him to go sooner than that. His fastball is a 94mph offering with a nice natural sink, perfect for Chase Field, and he locates it well inside and out to frustrate all types of batter. His secondary pitches, a curve and slider, are average and a bit erratic, but he'll have time to refine those, along with his underused and underdeveloped change. While he closed during his early days in college, he should now be considered a middle-rotation candidate as long as his bionic arm stays attached.
More Scouting Book Info on Andrew Chafin
SB 381 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Virginia Tech third baseman Chad Pinder, drafted in 2013's second round by the Oakland A's, Chad Pinder is known for an advanced hitting approach and ability to hit to all fields. His power is of the gap variety for now, and his speed is so-so, but his solid defense and demonstrated ability to adjust to better pitching portends well for his future in MLB.
More Scouting Book Info on Chad Pinder
SB 382 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Yet another offense-first outfielder in the Tiger system the improbably-named Austin Schotts is a smallish player with a gritty demeanor and an impressive stick. Schotts slashed a nice .310/.360/.452 in his first taste of the professional game last year, earning a late-season promotion to A-ball. We'll watch him smash through that level in 2013, then see how he handles higher levels next season.
More Scouting Book Info on Austin Schotts
SB 383 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An unsexy pickup by the Rangers at the bottom of the second round of the 2010 Draft, California righthander Cody Buckel was overlooked by many scouts due to his small stature, but he certainly shows pitching ability. His real ability was on display at AA Frisco in 2012, however, as he struck out 68 hitters in 69 innings of work, (10 starts) while walking only 23. Not bad for a 20-year old.
Buckel's fastball picked up a tick or two, but still seems to max out at not much more than 94mph, though he controls it well and mixes in three other pitches that are all pretty advanced for his age: even his proto-change looks better than you'd expect from such a young pitcher. Of course, he's still a small guy with a whiplike delivery and a high strikeout rate, so no matter how well he does, you know what most scouts are thinking: future closer.
More Scouting Book Info on Cody Buckel
SB 384 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A second-round pick by the Rockies in 2014, righthander Ryan Castellani is probably an excellent fit for Colorado, as his repitoure is tailor-made for Coors Field. Castellani works from a 94mph sinker, which he throws about 70 percent of the time, mixed with occasional changes and breaking balls that look a lot better than average for prep pitchers. He's likely to add size and strength as he fills out, so as long as his mechanics remain in check, he should be a safe bet to reach MLB as a mid-rotation workhorse in a few years.
More Scouting Book Info on Ryan Castellani
SB 386 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Drafted but unsigned by the Red Sox in 2011, Daniel Gossett went to Clemson instead, and that's where he sharpened his game to its current sparkle. Gossett is a control pitcher who nonetheless complements his pinpoint fastball with a hard breaking slider. One of the better changeups in college ball keeps hitters honest, which is important, because that 92mph fastball won't blow many away. Some scouts look at his smallish size and relegate him to the bullpen immediately, and it's true that his slider could be devastating in short use, but the A's (who drafted and signed him in 2014) will try their best to keep him as a rotation candidate unless he pitches his way out of contention.
More Scouting Book Info on Daniel Gossett
SB 387 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A third baseman with a cannon arm that can touch 98mph, it should come as no surprise that many scouts want to see Oakland prospect Matt Chapman converted to pitching ASAP. The Athletics haven't made any official plans public, but it seems wisest to keep growing Chapman as an everyday player, while keeping that arm available as a backup plan. As an offensive force, he's raw but shows flashes of greatness, occasionally making the sort of ringing hard contact that makes coaches look up from their clipboards. The key word there, however, is occasionally: most of his moonshots to date have come in batting practice; he's not nearly consistent enough in-game to be an everyday bat, at least not yet, despite what seems to be superior strike-zone knowledge and judgment. As a raw talent, he's fascinating, but a wait-and-see approach is very much in order here.
More Scouting Book Info on Matt Chapman
SB 388 BA SC BP SN ES ML
An infield prospect from the Washington system, the fast-rising Zach Walters is at least MLB-bench ready right now, which is probably what inspired the Indians to snatch him up at 2014's trade deadline. Walters, who's competent across the infield but best-deployed at third thanks to his strong arm and quick feet, could also fill in at shortstop if necessary. Walters showed a bit of power in AA last season, slashing .293/.326/.518, which puts a nice frosting on his traditionally solid on-base game. He maintained most of that even after a bump to AAA (.269/.304/.399), which shows that he's got the skills to survive, if only as a bench player.
More Scouting Book Info on Zach Walters
SB 389 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Headline writers the world over are definitely praying for him to become an MLB closer one day, but right now Scott Blewett has all the makings of an innings-eating starter. Drafted by Kansas City near the end of 2014's second round, Blewett is a very big pitcher with a fastball that isn't quite as heavy as you'd expect, at least not yet: give him a couple more years to work on that. He shows a curve and change that at times look MLB-ready, though he doesn't have near the consistency to lean on them much, especially as he tires in later innings. Now a member of the Royals, he'll be working on that command and stamina in one of the better farm systems for just that.
More Scouting Book Info on Scott Blewett
SB 390 BA SC BP SN ES ML
380 to 390 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013