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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Starlin Rodriguez is another product of the St Louis farm system and Random Baseball Name Generator. A solid fielder who could play shortstop if called upon, he's more suited to second base, where his soft glove and quick reflexes shine. At bat, he has a short, quick stroke and the kind of discerning eye that should help him hit for a high average in his career, with a little bonus pop of power to boot. On the bases, he's a plus runner and smart base-stealer. It's an open question whether the infield-rich Cards can find a place for him to play, but even if they need to move him to the outfield, his bat should play at the MLB level.
More Scouting Book Info on Starlin Rodriguez
SB 471 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Another in the endless parade of young hitters with question marks in the Mariners' system, Triunfel has slipped a bit from his high-flying days of hype, but remains intriguing because of his advanced batting development at an early age. While he lacks real power, he does have line-drive stroke and an ability to work to all fields.
A fiery competitor when he first came to the USA, no teenage shortstop looked as close to big-league-ready since Hanley Ramirez. Of course, due to Triunfel's plus arm and below-average speed, he's already been moved to third base, with right field or even first base possible as future stops on the spectrum... especially if his body continues to fill out. He's a couple of years away from growing into his real talent (and body), but he remains a significant prospect asset, epecially in the offensively-weak Mariners system. With five hits (including two doubles) in ten MLB games last year, he looks competent as a bench component now, though another full year of AAA might help him bloom into more than that. Still, time is running out quick: he'll be 23 when camp breaks.
More Scouting Book Info on Carlos Triunfel
SB 472 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A third-round selection in the 2012 Draft, Aaron Shipman is a fast and toolsy outfielder in a system that's absolutely overflowing with outfield talent. He's younger and further away than most of the other top-level talent in the system, but he's also one of the few who really looks like a centerfielder rather than a corner, and he did his darndest to stand out last year in Low-A Vermont, slashing .385/.303/.689 in a full (short) season.
While that's a heck of a line, we're actually more impressed by two finer points: he was caught stealing in only three of twenty attempts, and he showed such a good eye at the plate that he walked more often than he struck out. Those are two indicators of advanced ability and maturity that we love to see in young players, and they impress us more than gaudy numbers in a weak league. That's also probably why we feel that Shipman is worth more than the usual by-the-way mention he gets in most discussions of Oakland prospects. But it might also be his winning smile that won us over.
More Scouting Book Info on Aaron Shipman
SB 473 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Yup, that's a good name for a Texas ballplayer, even one born in Seattle. Austin Wates has a compact, line-drive swing from the right side that's done about all he can do in the minors: that .304/.375/.429 line at AA Corpus Christi last year is enough to indicate his future: he'll be playing in Minute Maid Park by the end of 2013.
If he wants to get there sooner than September, of course, he'll need to show he can perform reliably with the same sharp eye and quick hands that have kept him on the radar. His mix of a good eye and near-plus speed, with a little power on top, could play well enough to play everyday in a poppy Astros lineup come 2014, too.
More Scouting Book Info on Austin Wates
SB 474 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Puerto Rican prospect Neftali Soto is a toolsy infielder who's growing up fast in the Reds' power-packed farm system. After looking like the future of the franchise in 2011, he took a step back in 2012 at AAA Louisville with a meh .245/.313/.400 full-season line. He did manage 14 homers and 30 doubles, however, showing that he hasn't lost his power stroke. His increasing size and strength knocked him out of third base contention, as expected, but he's a useful enough 1B-RF bat, and he could be a decent DH with another ballclub. But as long as he keeps hitting, that'll be just fine.
More Scouting Book Info on Neftali Soto
SB 475 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A better pitcher than the one who gave up 21 runs in 24 innings for the Red Sox in 2011, righthanded Kyle Weiland (sic) opened a new book on his career with a fresh chance with the Astros a year later. A pitcher who's always had superior stuff without much ability to control it, he always seems one corner-turn away from being a premium arm. His 95mph sizzler has nasty natural movement that comes in extra-nasty thanks to the downhill plane his motion projects. His cutter moves even more than that at the cost of four or five miles per hour, while his curve can, on a good day, keep even good hitters honest. He's been primarily a starter to date, but many would like to see him in a relief role, where he could throw even harder.
More Scouting Book Info on Kyle Weiland
SB 476 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A tall, athletic righthander drafted by the ever-gambling Blue Jay scouting department (2nd round, 81st overall in 2012), California native Chase DeJong's fastball currently tops out around 92mph, but many scouts like his potential to improve on that as he fills out his body. He's also got what some say is an advanced head for the game. The Blue Jays had better hope so, because reports on his stuff are not eye-popping.
More Scouting Book Info on Chase DeJong
SB 477 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A switch-hitting third baseman with line-to-line power, Bobby Borchering has attracted comparisons Chipper Jones comparisons since way back in high school. Recently moved to the outfield, he remains a viable offensive force for the near future. Traded to Houston at 2012's deadline, he should get an opportunity to show off his smooth swing for the Astros in the very, very near future.
More Scouting Book Info on Bobby Borchering
SB 478 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A smallish closer candidate in the Padres minor league system, U Missouri alum Matt Stites ran his high-90's fastball right through the Midwest League in 2012, posting this insane performance line that contains no typographical errors: 50 innings, 0.74 ERA, 0.58 WHIP, 60 strikeouts and (wait for it) 3 walks.
Stites complements his heat with a 'changeup' that still clocks in the high 80's and a breaking ball that's either a 12-7 slider or a hard curve, depending on your school of thought. Either way, it's devastating when it comes in unannounced. Despite his smallish stature, Stites has all the confidence and swagger you expect from a quality relief pitcher. He's shown no fear of any hitter, at least not yet. As the top relief prospect in the Padres system, and with all due respect to the outstanding Huston Street, it wouldn't be a shock to see Stites closing games by the end of 2014.
More Scouting Book Info on Matt Stites
SB 479 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A highly-prized prospect for his combination of power and speed, Rodriguez was a free-agent prize when he was stolen by the Reds as a Latin American free agent in 2008. A very young and very raw talent, he probably has the highest ceiling of any hitter in the Reds' system... but he's a long way from polished or proven. Before he can move up through the minors, he'll need to learn to hit breaking balls, and to stop swinging at everything he can reach. He slashed .271/.307/.430 at A-level Dayton in 2012 before being promoted to high A, with six homers and seven steals in 65 games. He's still a year or two away from the Bigs, though, so hold your horses.
More Scouting Book Info on Yorman Rodriguez
SB 480 BA SC BP SN ES ML
470 to 480 of 650 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013