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.
Remember: this page is the result of an automatic process that re-sorts and re-ranks players often.
If you think you have found a mistake, please read
this blog entry before telling us. Then tell us. The Best Shortstop Prospects for 2013
Overall SB ranking shown in parentheses.
He's clearly no shortstop anymore, as Scouting Book readers knew to expect, but that doesn't stop Miguel Sano from stepping into the number one prospect room in Minnesota. The biggest Latin American signing of 2009, Sano was a coup of sorts for the small market Minnesota Twins. A coveted athlete pursued by all the usual big-market teams, it was Minnesota's relentless (one might say 'piranha-like') tenacity that finally landed the youngster. While his bat is enticing, the rest of his game is more typical of a still-teenager: sloppy and inconsistent. He'll need to become a better fielder and baserunner, at the very least, before he's treated with proper respect in the big
Full Scouting Report for Miguel Sano
SB 3 BA 9 SC 16 BP 21 SN ES 11 ML 12
There aren't a lot of Arubans around MLB, but the tiny island's reputation should be well-represented by Red Sox infield prospect Xander 'Crews' Bogaerts. A player of exceptional baseball intelligence, the man from San Nicolas has a graceful, quick swing with a little natural loft that should serve him well once his body fills out a bit more. His contact is solid and strong to all fields, and he's an above-average baserunner to boot. His weaknesses to date are iffy strike zone judgement (he's young) and some awkwardness in the field, especially with his footwork (he's young). There's really not anything to worry about here, though, other than the possibility he may bump Middlebrooks to first base one of these years. Either way, he'll be a middle-lineup guy, so it's safe to pre-order your Bogaerts jersey, but remember to triple-check the spelling.
Full Scouting Report for Xander Bogaerts
SB 4 BA 8 SC 27 BP 12 SN ES 5 ML 20
With the first pick of the 2012 Draft, Houston showed a commitment to a strong future with the surprise selection of teenage phenom Carlos Correa, a natural shortstop who impressed scouts with a superior work ethic and five solid tools. His power potential is especially intriguing for a player who looks well-suited to remain at short, though he seems aware of this: his swing gets a little long and lofty at times when he reaches for the seats. Some good coaching along with the aforementioned work ethic should fix this, of course, and if he blossoms, he'll be a cornerstone of a future Astros lineup as it fights to contend in the tough AL West.
Full Scouting Report for Carlos Correa
SB 7 BA 13 SC 24 BP 26 SN ES 24 ML 30
A high-school shortstop from Puerto Rico with a live bat and a great batting eye from both sides of the plate, Cleveland's Franky Lindor is a young and talented all-around player who shows signs of all five major league tools. His glove is pretty shiny, and his baserunning smarts and instincts are already several years ahead of his age bracket. As he works his way through several hundred thousand practice swings in the next three or four years, we'll find out if that bat can live up to early reports and carry his future into MLB.
Full Scouting Report for Francisco Lindor
SB 13 BA 28 SC 19 BP 10 SN ES 7 ML 14
A nominal shortstop, Puerto Rican Cub Javier Baez also looks just fine at second and third, and has one of the highest overall upsides of any infield prospect in baseball. His ultimate position will probably come down to some mix of organizational need and how his body develops.
A solid all-around athlete, there's no reason to yet believe he won't stick at shortstop, thanks to a strong arm, soft hands and good feet. He hasn't yet shown the power for a corner, though, so his best route to the majors is definitely the middle of the diamond. He's not very widely known yet, but wait another year and Cubs fans will be clamoring for a Castro-Baez (or perhaps Baez-Castro) infield combination. They should have one or the other in 2014.
Full Scouting Report for Javier Baez
SB 14 BA 16 SC 22 BP 20 SN ES 31 ML 16
A headline acquisition as part of the trade of pitcher Matt Garza, Hak-Ju Lee is a big, powerful shortstop from Korea who's now prominently positioned in the Tampa Bay system. Already a polished hitter (.261/.336/.360 at AA Montgomery last year), Lee seems to have the footwork and arm to stick at shortstop, too, and he's shown improvement in the field every season. His 37 steals in 2012, a career best, is also a highlight worth remembering. As projected, he should get a shot at everyday Tampa life in 2013.
Full Scouting Report for Hak-Ju Lee
SB 22 BA 90 SC 23 BP 75 SN ES 78 ML 56
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.
Full Scouting Report for Alen Hanson
SB 38 BA 61 SC 54 BP 66 SN ES 34 ML 54
A promising high-school bat scooped up by the Rockies in 2011's compensation round, Irving alum Trevor Story is a sweet-swinging youngster with an all-fields line drive stroke, and better than average wheels in the field.
After a .268/.364/.436 line across 47 rookie league games, Story stepped up to A ball and performed much the same, slashing .277/.367/.505 in a full season and showing advanced baserunning ability to boot . He's viable at either short or third right now, but won't be MLB-ready for a couple more years.
Full Scouting Report for Trevor Story
SB 48 BA 96 SC 83 BP 34 SN ES 85 ML 99
One of Japan's most talented all-around ballplayers, Oakland rookie Hiroyuki Nakajima is a toolsy, accomplished shortstop with a good line-drive swing and an exemplary work ethic. Playing all season at shortstop for Seibu in 2011, Hiroyuki slashed .297/.354/.433 with 16 home runs and 27 doubles, which is actually a poor year compared to his .310/.381/.479 career line. He also stole 21 out of 23 bases, showing exceptional skill. He's a solid player, with the same speed and discipline usually seen in Japanese players, plus a little more power than American fans might expect. A three-hole hitter with Seibu, Hiro would fit well into the number two or seven slot for the A's, or as a decent lead off man.
Full Scouting Report for Hiroyuki Nakajima
SB 66 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Baby brother to Seattle's Kyle, young Corey is a similar infielder with bat speed that might actually be better than his big brother's. He's more likely to see action at second base thanks to the Dodgers' depth at shortstop, which is just fine: his body and skill set are better-suited to that position anyway. Give him a couple of years, then check back.
Full Scouting Report for Corey Seager
SB 72 BA SC BP SN ES 46 ML
The switch-hitting son of outfielder Raul, shortstop Adalberto Mondesi is already familiar with a major league dugout, even if it's only as a place to find a treasure trove of sunflower seeds and bubble gum. While he lacks his father's power profile, Berty does have a quality bat, superior speed and sure seems to have sophisticated defensive skill. A smallish player, he looks apt to stick at shortstop, where he could grow into some sort of slappy table-setter for the Royals a few years from now. He's still some distance away from showing anyone exactly how good he'll be, but an impressive .290/.346/.386 line as a
sixteen-year-old in professional rookie ball erased any notions that he's a prospect via name recognition alone.
Full Scouting Report for Adalberto Mondesi
SB 74 BA SC BP 58 SN ES ML
A young phenom infielder currently raising eyebrows in the Cleveland system, Dorssys is a 2012 IFA signee that the Indians brass is cautiously excited about. Dorssys destroyed rookie ball as a 17 year old, outclassing his teenaged opponents to the tune of an ungodly .355/.404/.610 batting line. He was a bit of a mess in the field, making 20 errors in only 31 Rookie League games at short, but we like to think he'll develop enough glove to at least man second base. He does display quick feet and a strong arm, so the Indians will give him plenty of time to soften up those hands in the next couple of years. Expect him to spend all of 2013 in A ball, and if he dominates those pitchers, AA in 2014 and MLB soon thereafter. Of course, there are many opportunities to stumble along the way, so temper your excitement for now.
Full Scouting Report for Dorssys Paulino
SB 83 BA SC 93 BP 96 SN ES 56 ML
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.
Full Scouting Report for Luis Sardinas
SB 95 BA SC BP 86 SN ES ML 84
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.
Full Scouting Report for Nick Ahmed
SB 100 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The Mets top infield prospect, Wilmer Flores is on a trajectory for Flushing that will be difficult to derail. Flores's reached AA in 2012, slashing .311/.361/.494 in 66 Binghamton games that included 8 homers and 18 doubles. He's still a year or so away from Flushing, and it's possible he could outgrow shortstop, but right now he looks like he could be a slightly-dimmer East Coast version of Starlin Castro by early 2014.
Full Scouting Report for Wilmer Flores
SB 111 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A second round pick by the Phillies in the 2011 Draft, Roman Quinn is a sleeper-ish prospect who's now looking like the best in-house bet to take over for Jimmy Rollins sometime in the 2015-2016 timeframe. A fast-developing defender with plus speed and great overall athleticism, Quinn is also a switch-hitter, helpful in the table-setting role he's learning to master. We'd still like to see a bit less sloppiness in the field, a concern of some scouts that's hard to see from raw numbers.
Full Scouting Report for Roman Quinn
SB 123 BA 100 SC BP SN ES ML
A slight shortstop with plus instincts, Arizona prospect Chris Owings could see a move to second base in the near future. Signed out of high school in South Carolina after being selected 41st overall in the 2009 draft, Owings is a gap-to-gap hitter with a bit of pop. He's decent defensively, and shows above average speed on the bases. He's not a likely All Star, but he could be a competent bench or utility player in the bigs at any time.
Full Scouting Report for Chris Owings
SB 145 BA SC BP 81 SN ES ML
We see a lot of great names here at Scouting Book, but every once and awhile there's still one that makes us do a double-take. This offensive-minded infielder's name (nephew of Indians coach Rouglas) is really named Rougned (RYOO-nyed) Odor. We're hoping that was a little less teaseworthy for a kid growing up in Venezuela than it would have been in Lubbock.
An All-Star for the Venezuelan National Team in 2009, Odor is a short infielder with good fielding instincts, a strong arm, and a sweet swing from the left side of the plate. He's a long way from the majors, with a whole life of A-ball ahead of him first.
Full Scouting Report for Rougned Odor
SB 146 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A compact, wiry shortstop from Tuscaloosa, Tim Anderson's biggest weapon is his plus-plus speed, though he's also a good enough contact hitter to make that speed dangerous. A good but not standout shortstop, he shows plus range but only a so-so arm, which suggests a move to second base might be coming in the future. The 17th overall selection of the 2013 draft, he'll be moved slowly... it'll take some time for his hitting ability to develop enough to handle quality breaking stuff.
Full Scouting Report for Tim Anderson
SB 158 BA SC BP SN ES ML
The younger brother to Boston's Garin, shortstop Gavin Cecchini is a contact hitter with solid tools who could develop into exactly the franchise shortstop the Mets suddenly need. He'll need a few years, though, and there are some legitimate-sounding concerns about whether he can round out his game well enough to be a front-line starter. We'll wait and see.
Full Scouting Report for Gavin Cecchini
SB 167 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Top Prospects 2013