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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SB 60 BA 35 SC 35 BP 85 SN ES 68 ML 47
The first son of Niceville, Florida, Milwaukee prospect Jimmy Nelson is an enormous bear of a pitcher pulling himself up the minor league system. After dominating the high-A Florida League with a 2.21, 1.082, 77:25 performance, Nelson moved up to AA Huntsville at midseason. While his numbers against more advanced hitters suffered, Nelson's always been good at challenges, so watch for him to step up again in 2013. Nelson works with a nice matched fastball and slider that he commands well, though his control isn't quite up to snuff. Some scouts think his delivery is too busy, but it's difficult to be certain.
What we do know is that his changeup doesn't change much, and can't be counted on in a pinch, which means Nelson becomes a two pitch pitcher under pressure. With his size and intimidation factor, that sounds like a future reliever to us.
More Scouting Book Info on Jimmy Nelson
SB 61 BA 96 SC 76 BP SN ES ML 83
He might sound like a designer of cheap neckties, but prospective Ranger catcher Jorge Alfaro has been making a name for himself in the damp northwest rather than the fashion outlets in airport shopping malls. A big strong right-handed bat, the still-teenaged Alfaro looks likely to stick behind the plate, where he exhibits a cannon arm of increasing accuracy. His game-calling skills are a long way off, but if that .320/.430/.750 Sally League line from 2012 is a real indicator of his potential, the Rangers will be content to wait it out.
More Scouting Book Info on Jorge Alfaro
SB 62 BA 54 SC 27 BP 41 SN ES 44 ML 39
A slappy, scrappy, switch-hitting wheels player, Pirate prospect Alen Hanson was a low-visibility 2011 IFA signing from the Dominican, but one that earn more kudos for htose ever-impressive Pittsburgh scouts. Hanson would probably get more attention if his name included an Alvarez or Concepcion in there, something that looked more Latin and less Nordic. (At least 'Alexi'. Something. Make an effort, kid!)
Alexi is said to have the quick hands and feet necessary to stick at shortstop, but he also has a quick everything-else: plus speed is clearly his main offensive weapon. Power may never come, depending on how his slender frame fills out, but he's already showing superior on-base skill, and the Pirates should already be delighted with his development, no matter when he finds the ceiling.
More Scouting Book Info on Alen Hanson
SB 63 BA 76 SC 61 BP SN ES 74 ML 67
Nobody expected young Josh Bell to sign in 2011, which is probably why he fell to the Pirates in round two of the draft. But one should never underestimate the allure of five million shiny dollars, and young Bell shocked other managers by inking with the Pirates and passing on the University of Texas. Bell immediately became the biggest bat in a Pirate system that's very lacking in offensive muscle, but his primo status doesn't only come from relative dearth: he's a valid top prospect all on his own merit.
More Scouting Book Info on Josh Bell
SB 64 BA SC BP 77 SN ES 97 ML 74
A raw high-school talent with one of the liveliest arms in any system, Haitian-born Touki Toussaint has a violent delivery and absolutely electric stuff: his 95mph fastball has natural movement yet can still reach 98mph, while his plus curve is a real knee-buckler. His changeup is still developing, naturally, but he already seems unafraid to use it in any count. As a point of fact, Toussaint doesn't seem to be much afraid of anything, an attitude that should help him mow down hitters, especially in the low minors. If he can refine his delivery enough to repeat his pitches without spinning out of whack, he'll rise up to be an ace in the Majors one day. Even without the polish, though, he could be an effective relief pitcher in very short order, despite his young age.
More Scouting Book Info on Touki Toussaint
SB 65 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A big pitcher with an even bigger fastball, Michael Foltynewicz is a teenaged right-hander who scrapes 6-foot-6 and 220, with a heavy, moving fastball that can touch 98. Striking out 125 in 152 innings of Sally League work is a nice hint at what he can do, but the high contact and walk rates he also logged are the indicators that he's not reaching his potential yet. He's still raw, and a couple of years away, but definitely worth watching closely.
More Scouting Book Info on Michael Foltynewicz
SB 66 BA 59 SC BP 43 SN ES 70 ML 54
The Mets first round pick (13th overall) in 2011, outfielder Brandon Nimmo earned his high draft pick with superior tools and excellent projectability, thanks to his strong, mature physical frame. Nimmo slashed a respectable .248/.372/.406 in low-A ball, and should spend 2013 working up to higher A levels. He's still young, but in an offensively weak system, he could move quickly and land in New York before 2015.
More Scouting Book Info on Brandon Nimmo
SB 67 BA SC BP SN ES 92 ML
A big, strong third baseman in the Matt Williams tradition, Arizona prospect Matt Davidson was traded to the White Sox during the winter of 2013. Davidson slashed .237/.333/.434 during a month with the Diamondbacks in 2013, but it's the .280/.350/.481 AAA line (with 17 homers in 115 games) that the White Sox paid for. He strikes out a bit too much, but he makes up for it with overall offensive chops. On defense, he's solid if not spectacular, more than enough to stay in favor on the homer-happy south side.
More Scouting Book Info on Matt Davidson
SB 68 BA 72 SC 96 BP 93 SN ES 88 ML 80
A Cardinal prospect picked up in the St. Louis treasure trove known as 2012's Supplemental draft round, California native Stephen Piscotty is an offensive-first corner glove who won the Cape Cod batting title in 2011, also picking up the award as the league's best pro prospect. While his name almost makes us wish he was a part of the Tampa Bay farm system, he'll do just fine in St. Louis, too. He should move quickly through the ranks.
More Scouting Book Info on Stephen Piscotty
SB 69 BA 70 SC 66 BP 66 SN ES 57 ML 98
An outfield prospect drafted deep in the 16th round of 2010's Rule 4 draft by the Toronto Blue Jays, the switch-hitting Dalton Pompey is a toolsy, defense-first ballplayer with a potent mix of nascent ability. In 2013, during a full season at A-level Lansing, Dalton spent time in all three outfield slots, though he seemed most comfortable in center, showing good range and smart route-running. At the plate, he was also quite at home, slashing a respectable .261./358/.394 and swiping 38 bases in 115 games, though his base-stealing skills are still a bit rough around the edges. His power game, too, isn't all there yet, and may never arrive (he's not a large man), but all other aspects of his game look very good, and scouts can't say enough about his makeup and work ethic. He'll be a AA player for at least part of 2014, and will be on the bench/callup shortlist for the Blue Jays in 2015.
More Scouting Book Info on Dalton Pompey
SB 70 BA SC BP SN ES ML
60 to 70 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013