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 high-school catcher with a tantalizing power bat (15 homers in 27 games in his senior year), the double-named Tommy Joseph was scooped up by the Giants in 2009. In addition to his terrific raw power, Joseph displays a very strong throwing arm and shows signs of excellent leadership and discipline on the field. With the catcher's position in San Francisco locked up for the foreseeable future, the Giants found it easy (?) to part with Joseph at 2012's trade deadline, giving the Phillies a very obvious catcher of the future.
ToJo can also play a reasonable first base, and is athletic enough to learn third if necessary. He's still a bit away away from the big leagues, but he shows every sign of being well-equipped to get there in the near future. We expect to see him get everyday at-bats in 2014, with spot-duty possible before that.
More Scouting Book Info on Tommy Joseph
SB 92 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Pitching prospect Trevor May, a sometimes-forgotten part of the December 2012 trade for Ben Revere, has seen his spotlight turn a bit brighter thanks to his arrival in an organization well-known for developing quality arms.
Not that he needs all that much more development: as a Phillies prospect, May was already showing three good pitches with regularity, and he's already had some pretty eye-opening success at low levels of minor league ball. He stumbled a bit when first faced with higher level batters, but that sort of adjustment period is common, and it shouldn't scare the Twins or their fans. May remains a very solid and still-developing athlete. His fastball is a standard 92-94 offering with heavy sink, and his secondary pitches (a hammer curve and a straight change) are almost ready for more advanced hitters.
More Scouting Book Info on Trevor May
SB 93 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A tall lefthander from California, Boston prospect Henry Owens is a raw but high-ceilinged pitcher who many project as a future relief specialist, though he's shown the durability and maturity to survive as a starter, and the Sox are expected to keep him in that role as long as possible. Owens fastball is a low-90's offering with movement, though it could pick up a few ticks as he grows and gains strength. He mixes in two curves, one hard and one soft, with varying degrees of effectiveness, and a weak changeup that does almost no good whatsoever at present.
With command to improve and strength to build, Owens won't be an All-Star anytime soon, but his raw ability shouldn't be overlooked, either. Given a couple of years of good guidance and hard work, he could find himself taking an MLB mound every fifth day, or at least for an inning or two twice a week.
More Scouting Book Info on Henry Owens
SB 94 BA 91 SC BP SN ES ML 94
Someone in the Texas system is very, very good at finding high quality shortstops. Signed by the Rangers back in 2010 as an IFA, Luis Sardinas is an underrated shortstop prospect from Venezuela who has all the raw tools to be a superstar. After a rookie 2011 cut short due to injury, Sardinas showed what he could do at A-level Hickory last season by slashing an easy .291/.346/.356 line while wowing the crowd with highlight-reel defensive wizardry.
A natural switch-hitter, Sardinas shows equal effectiveness from either side of the plate, and brings superior speed to the table as well. He's not shown much power yet, but he has a body to grow into, so some pop should be coming along presently. If he has a weak spot, he's a bit twitchy and impatient at the plate, but that's hardly a serious flaw in a still-teenaged prospect. While the baseball world is busy writing about an imaginary battle between Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar, Sardinas might eventually surpass both of them.
More Scouting Book Info on Luis Sardinas
SB 95 BA SC BP 86 SN ES ML 84
The Topps Player of the Year for the (A-level) Midwest League in 2011, outfielder Rymer Liriano is a five-tool talent on the fast-track to major league duty in San Diego. His 2012 numbers (.251/.335/.377) might look inferior to his track record, but it was the youngster's first crack at AA, so it's actually pretty impressive. The Dominican native's award-winning minor league career is a tantalizing showcase of speed and power, just the thing the Padres could use at the top of the order. If he lights up AA pitching this spring, he could be in the majors by midseason. If not, he's still a near-lock for the 2014 lineup.
More Scouting Book Info on Rymer Liriano
SB 96 BA SC 44 BP 39 SN ES 54 ML 55
A shortstop who outgrew the position, as so many tall men do, Red Sox prospect Garin Cecchini zipped up prospect lists last year mainly on the strength of his .298/.398/.500 performance at Low-A Lowell in 2011, and that season was obviously no fluke: he slashed .305/.394/.433 a year later at higher-level Greenville. Cecchini shows good (but not great) glove and footwork, and his arm can certainly handle the long throws from third, so there's little worry that he'll be able to play there. While there's no special reason for pessimism, we'll see how he can handle higher quality pitching, including his first taste of ungodly breaking stuff in 2013 before anointing him as a better third base option than Will Middlebooks.
More Scouting Book Info on Garin Cecchini
SB 97 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Another product of the Mets' Latin American prospecting machine, Dominican righthander Rafael Montero is yet another hard thrower coming up fast through the minor league system. Montero has a lean and mean mound presence, not unlike the young Pedro Martinez, and he has the electric stuff to live up to that comp. Montero brings a mid-90's fastball that's solid and accurate, but it's the advanced nature of his secondary pitches (especially the wicked slider and sometimes-plus change) that frustrates hitters.
And my, how those hitters do get frustrated. Montero racked up crazy-good numbers last year, both before and after his promotion to high-A St. Lucie. Combined, he went 11-5 in 20 starts with a 2.36 ERA and an eye-popping 0.94 WHIP. He also showed his command and control by maintaining a strikeout to walk rate of more than five to one. He'll probably pitch at AA in 2013, and could even be late-season Mets callup. Even if he isn't, though, expect to see him on top of prospect lists next time around.
More Scouting Book Info on Rafael Montero
SB 98 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A solid, squarely-built righthander in the Cards' system, Texan Tyrell Jenkins was a first round (supplemental) pick in the 2010 draft. A two-sport star who almost went to Baylor as a quarterback, Jenkins works with a 92mph heater than can touch 96. At the moment, he can also bring a slow curve, a passable slider and an (unreliable) changeup to bear. It'll be the development of those secondary pitches that controls his rise through the minors. He's a couple of more years away from relevant, possible tastes of MLB notwithstanding.
More Scouting Book Info on Tyrell Jenkins
SB 99 BA SC BP 94 SN ES ML
A second round (2011) draft pick of the Atlanta Braves, shortstop Nick Ahmed moved to the Diamondbacks when the team removed Justin Upton's salary and headaches from their makeup. A sharp-hitting, well-heeled infielder who's progressing rapidly, he's the shadow on Didi Gregorious's heels, and he could be a starting shortstop in MLB by late 2014.
More Scouting Book Info on Nick Ahmed
SB 100 BA SC BP SN ES ML
91 to 100 of 750 Prospects
Top Prospects 2013