2013 Top 50 MLB Prospects

It’s been a while, folks. A month and a day, actually. Between school work, finishing up my baseball preview, and pledging a fraternity, I haven’t had a ton of time on my hands, but I’m happy to issue my first sneak peak at my 2013 Baseball Preview.

Just like the past two years, I’m offering a look at my scouting reports on baseball’s top 50 prospects a little in advance of the publishing date (within 10 days, be ready). In the actual preview itself, each team will again have scouting reports for their top 10 prospects along with individual grades.

Unfortunately, this year’s preview won’t be quite as big as last year’s. Ain’t nobody got time for 108 pages. Instead, we’re looking more at something between 32 and 40 pages. For now, enjoy an early look at baseball’s future stars.

Notes:

  • Two players (Oscar Taveras and Xander Bogaerts) jumped from the 40s to the top 5.
  • Only 26 players return from last year’s top 50 prospects list.
  • 14 players graduated to the majors.
  • 10 players fell off the top 50 list from last year.
  • Of the 24 new players to the list, 10 were selected in the 2012 draft.
  • 13 of the top prospects were taken in the first round of the 2011 draft, the most among any draft.
  • Billy Hamilton (2nd round), Jonathan Singleton (8th), Mason Williams (4th), and Austin Hedges (2nd) were the only players drafted outside the first round, excluding the 12 players signed in international free agency.

Positional Breakdown

  • 4 Catchers
  • 1 First Baseman
  • 1 Second Baseman
  • 3 Third Basemen
  • 7 Shortstops
  • 11 Center Fielders
  • 5 Right Fielders
  • 17 Right-Handed Pitchers
  • 1 Left-Handed Pitchers

1. Jurickson Profar

SS Rangers mlb_profar_jurickson_65
H/W: 5’11” 165 2012 Ranking: 9 Age: 19 B/T: B/R
Profar shows all the tools (home run power may come soon) with an outstanding approach. With such a complete game, he’s the top prospect in baseball.

2. Wil Myers

RF Rays mlb_myers_wil_65
H/W: 6’3″ 190 2012 Ranking: 13 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
He has a great bat with plus plus power. There’s really nothing to dislike unless you want to be picky about his strikeouts. Myers will be on the Evan Longoria-esque delayed call-up this year.

3. Oscar Taveras

RF Cardinals mlb_tavares_oscar_65
H/W: 6’2″ 180 2012 Ranking: 41 Age: 20 B/T: L/L
His swing may look a little funky, and he tends to be overly aggressive at the plate, but Taveras can absolutely rake. Hit hit, power, and fielding tools are all well above plus.

4. Dylan Bundy

RHP Orioles mlb_bundy_dylan_65
H/W: 6’1″ 195 2012 Ranking: 8 Age: 20 B/T: B/R
Bundy has exceptional polish, especially a twenty-year old. The man has four plus pitches how that he’s re-added his cutter to his repertoire; MLB’s best pitching prospect.

5. Xander Bogaerts

SS Red Sox mlb_bogaerts_xander_65
H/W: 6’3″ 175 2012 Ranking: 44 Age: 20 B/T: R/R
He can absolutely rakes with 30+ home run power when he’s fully developed. Bogaerts reached AA at 19 and has far less questions about if he can handle shortstop, at least for the time being.

6. Gerrit Cole

RHP Pirates mlb_cole_gerrit_65
H/W: 6’4″ 215 2012 Ranking: 5 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Cole’s fastball is a doozy and reaches as high as 102, although it can be flat and lacking command. That, with his exceptional changeup and slider make him a true ace.

7. Jose Fernandez

RHP Marlins mlb_fernandez_jose_65
H/W: 6’2″ 220 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Having four plus pitches (fastball, curveball, changeup, and slider), along with great peripheral numbers makes Fernandez’s future tantalizing. At just 20, he has an extremely high ceiling.

8. Jameson Taillon

RHP Pirates mlb_taillon_jameson_65
H/W: 6’6″ 225 2012 Ranking: 11 Age: 21 B/T: R/R
Taillon has tremendous stuff with inconsistencies you’d expect from a 21-year old. Very reminiscent of Gerrit Cole in his final year at UCLA; another ace.

9. Byron Buxton

CF Twins mlb_buxton_byron_65
H/W: 6’1″ 188 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 19 B/T: R/R
Arguably the top talent in the 2012 draft, Buxton is crazy athletic with elite speed, a huge arm, big bat and future power. Give him time, Buxton is the complete package.

10. Carlos Correa

SS Astros mlb_correa_carlos_65
H/W: 6’4″ 190 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 18 B/T: R/R
The actual top pick in 2012 draft, Correa is a strong defender despite his 6’4” frame. He may have to switch to third if he beefs up too much, but he’ll hit for average and big power.

11. Zack Wheeler

RHP Mets mlb_wheeler_zack_65
H/W: 6’3″ 180 2012 Ranking: 27 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Wheeler has great velocity and a plus curveball to go with a solid slider and changeup. Top-of-the-rotation future, but the Mets have not pushed him very quickly so far.

12. Christian Yelich

CF Marlins mlb_yelich_christian_65
H/W: 6’4″ 189 2012 Ranking: 34 Age: 21 B/T: L/R
All five of his tools are above-average, and he should be able stick in center field, despite switching from first base. He’s going to hit for a very good average; if power develops, he’ll be a star.

13. Miguel Sano

3B Twins mlb_sano_miguel_65
H/W: 6’2″ 245 2012 Ranking: 19 Age: 19 B/T: R/R
He’s patient, has a cannon arm, and has the most raw power in the entire minors. Sano strikes out too much (contact has been an issue), and his frame and footwork may move him to first.

14. Trevor Bauer

RHP Indians mlb_bauer_trevor_65
H/W: 6’1″ 185 2012 Ranking: 10 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Bauer is very smart with polarizing attitude that helped him fall out of favor in Arizona. Regardless, he has number one starter stuff, and his command needs polish. He’ll be just fine.

15. Mike Zunino

C Mariners mlb_zunino_mike_65
H/W: 6’2″ 220 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 21 B/T: R/R
Zunino is great all-around with plus bat, intriguing power, and strong defense. As far as catchers go, he’s the complete package and nearly ready to help out at the major league level.

16. Travis d’Arnaud

C Mets mlb_darnaud_travis_65
H/W: 6’2″ 195 2012 Ranking: 16 Age: 23 B/T: R/R
A solid defender with a strong arm. The man has plus raw power and a nice bat–the only thing to worry about are injuries. He’s had more than 280 plate appearances in two of his five seasons.

17. Taijuan Walker

RHP Mariners mlb_walker_taijuan_65
H/W: 6’4″ 195 2012 Ranking: 21 Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Walker has an athletic frame and his numbers are deceptively bad since he reached AA at the age of 20. He has a very high ceiling thanks to a plus fastball and secondary offerings.

18. Shelby Miller

RHP Cardinals mlb_miller_shelby_65
H/W: 6’3″ 195 2012 Ranking: 6 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Had a bit of an off-year, but his fastball still reaches the upper 90s to go with a plus curveball. He can be homer prone, but Miller is ready to pitch in the majors as a starter now.

19. Julio Teheran

RHP Braves mlb_teheran_julio_65
H/W: 6’2″ 175 2012 Ranking: 4 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Another guy who had a bad year but reached the majors at a young age. Teheran features a plus fastball, and changeup, although his command and curveball could improve.

20. Tyler Skaggs

LHP D-Backs mlb_skaggs_tyler_65
H/W: 6’4″ 195 2012 Ranking: 18 Age: 21 B/T: L/L
Skaggs has an above-average fastball, a plus curveball, and a potentially plus changeup. His floor is relatively high since he’s already been able to knock out lefties and righties.

21. Addison Russell

SS Athletics mlb_russell_addison_65
H/W: 6’0″ 185 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 19 B/T: R/R
A hidden gem of the 2012 draft, Russell is a potential five-tool player with real star power. He has shown shaky footwork before, but he’s athletic enough to stick at shortstop.

22. George Springer

CF Astros mlb_springer_george_65
H/W: 6’4″ 2405 2012 Ranking: 40 Age: 23 B/T: R/R
People knock him because of his age and strikeout issues, but that Astros have been slow to promote him is not his fault. He’s an absolute five-tool prospect, although he may only hit .270.

23. Archie Bradley

RHP D-Backs mlb_bradley_archie_65
H/W: 6’4″ 225 2012 Ranking: 15 Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Bradley has a nasty fastball-curveball combo and great size and athleticism. There’s no doubting his ace upside despite, but he’s got a ways to go and command issues to iron out.

24. Billy Hamilton

CF Reds mlb_hamilton_billy_65
H/W: 6’1″ 160 2012 Ranking: 49 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Hamilton is absurdly speedy (155 steals last year) and great on-base skills thanks to plus bat speed. He’s been moved off shortstop to center field, where he can really show off his legs.

25. Francisco Lindor

SS Indians mlb_lindor_francisco_65
H/W: 5’11” 175 2012 Ranking: 50 Age: 19 B/T: R/R
Lindor is quietly an outstanding defender with plus speed and on-base skills. He is very mature for his age (19), but one hopes he will develop more power by the time he hits the show.

26. Anthony Rendon

3B Nationals mlb_rendon_anthony_65
H/W: 5’11” 170 2012 Ranking: 23 Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Rendon has been hampered by ankle injuries (not good news if the Nats want him at second), but he  rakes when he’s healthy. He’s got great instincts and discipline but just solid power.

27. Javier Baez

SS Cubs mlb_baez_javier_65
H/W: 6’1″ 205 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Baez has proved to be a surprisingly strong defender considering his muscly frame. He’s an aggressive hitter with plus bat speed good raw power, and playable speed on the bases.

28. Lucas Giolito

RHP Nationals mlb_giolito_lucas_65
H/W: 6’6″ 225 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 18 B/T: R/R
Giolito was nearly first-ever high school pitcher taken first overall before he hurt his elbow. Still, his raw stuff is fantastic with triple-digit heat and a plus plus curveball. Not worried about his future health.

29. Carlos Martinez

RHP Cardinals mlb_martinez_carlos_65
H/W: 6′ 165 2012 Ranking: 28 Age: 21 B/T: R/R
Despite his small frame, Martinez touches 100 mph regularly. His plus fastball actually draws a good amount of grounders, although his command just okay at the moment.

30. Jonathan Singleton

1B Astros mlb_singleton_jonathan_65
H/W: 6’2″ 215 2012 Ranking: 39 Age: 21 B/T: L/L
Singleton is suspended 50 games for marijuana use, but that doesn’t hurt his value. His hit tool is great, and power should come soon, although he needs more patience. His plus arm is wasted at first base.

31. Nick Castellanos

3B Tigers mlb_castellanos_nick_65
H/W: 6’4″ 210 2012 Ranking: 42 Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Castellanos hits very well for average and home run power should develop soon. He does need more patience at the plate. Detroit is playing him some in right field so Miguel Cabrera can boot more balls at third, which makes little sense to me.

32. Kevin Gausman

RHP Orioles mlb_gausman_kevin_65
H/W: 6’4″ 185 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 22 B/T: R/R
Gausman has high potential with a plus fastball and changeup. Assuming his breaking ball develops more, he’ll be another ace Baltimore can pair with Dylan Bundy.

33. Jackie Bradley Jr.

CF Red Sox mlb_bradley_jackie_65
H/W: 5’10” 180 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 22 B/T: L/R
An elite defender with remarkable instincts. Plays above his hit tool, which is good to start with, and above-average speed. He wields little power now, which would be the key to stardom.

34. Kyle Zimmer

RHP Royals mlb_zimmer_kyle_65
H/W: 6’3″ 215 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 21 B/T: R/R
One of the best 2012 college arms. Zimmer has a projectable frame, good command, and great stuff. His velocity uptick into the upper-90s really helped his draft stock, value.

35. Matt Barnes

RHP Red Sox mlb_barnes_matt_65
H/W: 6’2″ 205 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 22 B/T: R/R
His fastball works in the upper-90s with nice movement. Barnes wields a plus curve and control with a #2 starter ceiling. He hasn’t been tested at all above high-A, where he dominated.

36. Gregory Polanco

CF Pirates mlb_polanco_gregory_65
H/W: 6’4″ 170 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 21 B/T: L/L
A plus defender with plus speed and power. Polanco’s swing can get a bitlong, but he surprisingly doesn’t strikeout much. He’s always been toolsy, but didn’t start producing until now–boom or bust?

37. Aaron Sanchez

RHP Blue Jays mlb_sanchez_aaron_65
H/W: 6’4″ 190 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Sanchez has three plus pitches including some upper-90s heat. His overpowering stuff covers up poor control, although he has plenty of time to correct that. Big-time upside.

38. Mason Williams

CF Yankees mlb_williams_mason_65
H/W: 6′ 150 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 21 B/T: L/R
Williams is an elite defender, with plus speed and an improving bat. He has a great approach on both sides of the ball, and may develop more power along the way.

39. Gary Sanchez

C Yankees mlb_sanchez_gary_65
H/W: 6’2″ 220 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Sanchez is an aggressive power hitter with a plus bat. His bulky frame leads to long transitions, which he makes up for with a cannon of an arm. He should still stick behind the plate.

40. Taylor Guerrieri

RHP Rays mlb_guerrieri_taylor_65
H/W: 6’3″ 195 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: L/R
Guerrieri has been heavily limited by the Rays, but he’s a potential ace with plus fastball and curveball. The youngster has impeccable control but has only reached low-A.

41. Albert Almora

CF Cubs mlb_almora_albert_65
H/W: 6’1″ 170 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 18 B/T: R/R
Almora has above-average tools across the board; he just needs to refine his plate discipline and he’ll be on track. The man’s extremely polished for his young age (18).

42. David Dahl

CF Rockies mlb_dahl_david_65
H/W: 6’2″ 185 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 18 B/T: L/R
Another pleasant surprise out of the 2012 draft, Dahl is extremely athletic with five-tool potential. He’s not nearly as raw as once thought–a complete hitter with a chance to stick in CF as he fills out.

43. Alen Hanson

SS Pirates mlb_hanson_alen_65
H/W: 5’11” 152 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: B/R
Hanson shows great defense and speed tools, but hasn’t used them well yet (lots of errors and times caught stealing). He’s a legit switch-hitter who will hit for a high average and some power.

44. Bubba Starling

CF Royals mlb_starling_bubba_65
H/W: 6’4″ 180 2012 Ranking: 14 Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Starling is an elite athlete with high ceiling who hasn’t played up to his potential. He has plus power and bat speed, but his swing has some mechanical issues that lead to big strikeout totals.

45. Jorge Soler

RF Cubs mlb_soler_jorge_65
H/W: 6’3″ 205 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 20 B/T: R/R
This guy has enormous upside with massive power, a big arm, and impressive speed for his frame. The key for him will be adjusting to off-speeds and narrowing his pitch selection.

46. Austin Hedges

C Padres mlb_hedges_austin_65
H/W: 6’1″ 190 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
Hedges is an outstanding defender with surprising power. He could stand to take a few more pitches. He’s unlikely to fail, but also doesn’t ooze upside like the guy two spots below him.

47. Aaron Hicks

CF Twins mlb_hicks_aaron_65
H/W: 6’2″ 185 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 23 B/T: B/R
All five tools are finally setting in; Hicks is finally fulfilling his elite promise. At worst, he’s a plus defender with great speed and plate discipline. He always seems to start slowly.

48. Rymer Liriano

RF Padres mlb_liriano_rymer_65
H/W: 6′ 211 2012 Ranking: 32 Age: 21 B/T: R/R
The definition of boom or bust, although I’m a big fan. He’s got plus speed, raw power, and bat speed but poor pitch recognition. Defensively, he’s angy with cannon arm. You have to love the tools.

49. Delino DeShields Jr.

2B Astros mlb_deshields_delino_65
H/W: 5’9″ 188 2012 Ranking: NR Age: 20 B/T: R/R
DeShields Jr. is an elite athlete with insane speed, only overlooked because of Billy Hamilton’s ridiculousness. His bat is very much improved, and he can play either second base or center field.

50. Courtney Hawkins

RF White Sox mlb_hawkins_courtney_65
H/W: 6’3″ 220 2012 Ranking: IE Age: 19 B/T: R/R
I’m a big fan, and I don’t get why Hawkins doesn’t get more hype. He’s a tremendous athlete with plus power and arm strength to go with good speed. Improve plate discipline is the one big issue.

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Categories: MLB | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “2013 Top 50 MLB Prospects

  1. Bryan

    Whem will you release you baseball preview?

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