Archive for the 'MLB' Category

Top 2021 Cuban Prospects in the American League

Friday, April 2nd, 2021

From last year’s list Luis Robert, the top prospect on last year’s list graduated. Ronald Bolanos and Randy Arozarena moved from the National League to the American League. If you included Arozarena’s at bats from the playoffs he would have graduated, but he is still eligible as a rookie. Julio Pablo Martinez, Yordys Valdes and Orlando Martinez dropped from the list. Two new players who were signed by the White Sox in 2021 were added to this list.

1. Rando Arozarena OF (Rays) - No one has ever been hotter in the playoffs when Arozarena, who hit 10 homeruns in 20 playoff games. For the longest time Babe Ruth held the record for most homeruns in the post season with 15, but then during that era they only played one seven game series. Arozarena almost equaled that amount in one playoff year. Don’t expect that power to result in Ruthian numbers during the regular season. He hits the ball hard but it’ll probably settle in the 30 plus homerun range. He was signed by the Cardinals in 2016 for what was then a modest bonus of $1.25 million. He has failed to fall high on prospect lists, but myworld did rate him as the second rated Cuban prospect in the National League last year. He appears to have a good hit tool, with the ability to hit in the neighborhood of .300. His speed will allow him to play centerfield, but he is a better fit in a corner with an arm strong enough for right field. The Rays acquired him from the Cardinals for Mike Liberatore. Arozarena should start at a corner for the Rays in 2021 with possible spot starts in centerfield.

2. Roberto Campos OF (Tigers) - The Tigers paid out $2.85 million to sign Campos. Like a lot of Cubans, not a lot is known about the 17 year old. In the United States he would still be in high school. He has the big, right field frame at 6′3″ and 200 pounds. He left Cuba at 13 and trained at a facility in the Dominican Republic for three years. His batting practices are impressive, but there is no game like action to show what he can do with a mixture of different offerings. The speed is there to play center, but like Arozarena his best fit appears to be right. He will probably start the 2021 season in Low A, since there will not be any rookie leagues.

3. Yusniel Diaz OF ( Orioles) - The tools are there for him to be a major leaguer. Some question whether he has the motivation. The Dodgers wheel barreled out $15 million to sign him back in 2015. They traded him to the Orioles for a half season use of Manny Machado. He slogged around in AA for more than two years. This spring he was hoping to win a job with the Orioles, but he will probably start the season in AAA. His tools are probably just above average in all categories, but power wise and defense fall far short of Manny Machado. Because he lacks the burner speed to play center, how his power develops will determine whether his bat can fit into a corner. His highest homerun total is 11 with a career slugging average of .440. Most teams want to see higher production from a corner outfielder. He will need a good season in AAA in 2021 and a couple injuries before he fits with the Orioles.

4. Yoelquis Cespedes OF (White Sox) - He is the younger brother of Yoennis Cespedes, who had a great early career in Cuba before he signed a major league contract. Yoelquis numbers in the Cuban league pale in comparison to Yoennis, yet the White Sox were still willing to pay $2.05 million for him. Yoennis signed a four year contract with the Oakland Athletics for $36 million, when there were not as many restrictions on bonuses for international players. Yoennis hit 177 homeruns in Cuba while Yoelquis has hit 12. Yoelquis only stands 5′9″, so we hold out little hope he will be a stand out player. His arm may be his strongest tool, but it is said he has some power, despite his vanilla .415 slugging percentage in Cuba. The speed is there to play center so if his power does not develop he could survive on his defense and moderate power. He reminds me a bit too much of Adolis Garcia. At 23, he should probably start the year in AA with a potential major league debut in 2022.

5. Alexander Vargas SS (Yankees) - The Yankees spent $2.5 million to sign Vargas in 2019. The 19 year old showed a smooth glove in his rookie league debut, but a little overmatched with the bat. His speed allowed him to steal 15 bases in 48 games and leg out 7 triples. At 5′11″ and only 150 pounds the power is a little short but should improve as he gets stronger. The defensive tools are there for him to stick at short. He needs to show a little better bat if he doesn’t want to fall into oblivion like a number of other Cuban shortstops that are short with the stick and battling for an opportunity to play in the major leagues. Alexander should start the 2021 season in Low A. The Yankees seem to be flush with shortstops so it would not surprise myworld if Vargas is not traded in a couple years for playoff pieces.

6. Norge Vera RHP (White Sox) - Norge is the son of Norge Luis Vera, who was a star for the Cuban National team that won a number of Olympic gold medals. At 6′4″ he has a good frame for a pitcher. The White Sox signed him for $1.5 million in 2021. That is over $3 million the White Sox spent for two Cubans. Norge throws his fastball in the low 90s but it should gain velo as he matures physically. He appears to have the requisite secondary pitches to fit in the middle of a rotation. His long levers had difficulty finding the plate when he pitched in the Cuban League, but he was only 18 then. The White Sox will start him in Low A in 2021.

7. Lazaro Armentaros OF (Athletics) - Lazaro came from Cuba with too much hype. The Athletics believed that hype and spent $3 million to sign him in 2016. He was advertised as a five tool athlete, but his arm is weak and dedicated to left field and he has trouble making contact. He struck out 227 times in 2019. If the pitch has a bend to it Lazaro has trouble making contact. He does have some speed and shows some power when he can make contact. He fell three homeruns short in 2019 from being a 20/20 player in the minor leagues. The 2021 season should see him start it in AA where he needs to focus on making more consistent contact.

8. Bryan Ramos 3B (White Sox) - The third White Sox on this list, but Ramos signed for only $300,000 in 2018. The power is there for him to stick at a corner infield position, but the glove at third may force a move to first. If that is the case there may be more pressure on him for his power to really perform. Major league teams have been reluctant to have right handed gloves who bat right handed play first base. His speed is not great, but he could also move to a corner outfield position. In his one season of Rookie level ball in 2019 he had trouble making contact with 44 whiffs in 51 games. The 2021 season should see him start in Low A.

9. Ronald Bolanos RHP (Royals) - Ronald appeared as the ninth top Cuban prospect in the National League last year. He appears as the ninth best prospect in the American League this year. The Padres signed Bolanos for $2 million in 2016, then included him in a trade to the Royals with Franchy Cordero for Tim Hill. He did get an opportunity to pitch with the Padres in 2019 and with the Royals in 2020, but his seven appearances result in an ERA of 6.94. Throwing strikes has been a bit of a challenge in the major leagues, resulting in 5 dingers in just 23 innings. His fastball hits the mid-90s and his curve has a good break, but if he wants to fit into the rotation he needs to enhance his change to get a third effective pitch. He will start the 2021 season in AAA.

10. Yolbert Sanchez SS (White Sox) - The fourth White Sox on this list. The White Sox signed him for $2.5 million. At 24 he is a veteran of the Cuban League, hitting just two homeruns in his three years there, with averages ranging from .255 to .350. In 2019 he played 29 games in the Dominican Summer League where he was playing against much younger players. The defensive tools are there to play shortstop but the bat needs to improve if he hopes to take on a regular role. A utility option exists if his bat fails to mature. The White Sox may be aggressive with him in 2021 and start him in High A or AA.

Rating the Major League Farm Systems

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021

Myworld always makes an attempt to rate the major league farm systems. We use a point system only counting those players who made a top 100 list. We give them points based on how they rank. The belief is that those players who make a top 100 list will have a larger impact on the major league team. Using this method we will compare our ranking to MLB and Baseball America to see how closely we match.

1. Detroit Tigers 40.18 (BA 4, MLB 2) - Poor teams find out how drafting first can stock up your farm system. Spencer Torkelson was a big bat added to a system that seemed to be loaded with arms. Casey Mize, Tarik Skubal and Matt Manning will make a dynamite trio. Riley Greene is another big bat that will be contributing soon. Greatest Depth - With the Tigers you have to go with their righthanded arms. We’ve already mentioned Casey Mize and Matt Manning. Franklin Perez was highly thought of until arm issues dropped him down the prospect ladder. Alex Faedo was a highly thought of pitcher who is now undergoing Tommy John. And don’t forget about Beau Burrows.

2. Tampa Bay Rays 37.18 (BA 1, MLB 1) - Having the best prospect in baseball in Wander Franco cashes in a lot of points. Luis Patino is a solid righthanded arm. Down a notch is Shane Baz who can throw from the right side. Vidal Brujan shows some speed in an industry that seems to be down playing that skill. Xavier Edwards could be a true shortstop who is quick around the bases. Lots of people wonder if the power Randy Arozarena showed in the playoffs last year is real. Brendan McKay and Shane McClanahan both are talented lefthanded pitchers. Brendan is a two way player that has struggled to hit. Shane throws in triple digits. Greg Jones is another shortstop to watch. Brent Honeywell continues to fight for prospect survival with multiple arm injuries. Josh Lowe is one in a trio of Lowes who has a power bat for the outfield. Greatest Depth - Middle infield. A lot of that middle infield has been moved to second base because the hope is that Wander Franco will make the grade at shortstop instead of being moved to third base. That moves Xavier Edwards, Vidal Brujan and Taylor Walls as second baseman who could still play shortstop. Greg Jones and Carlos Colmenarez are recent signings that are to be watched.

3. Seattle Mariners 33.72 (BA 2, MLB 3) - They have two of the best outfielders in baseball in Jarred Kelenic and Julio Rodriguez to join Kyle Lewis in a studded outfield. That leaves no room for Taylor Trammell, unless they rotate them through the DH slot. Emerson Hancock was a nice quality draft choice to join Logan Gilbert and George Kirby in the right handed arms department. Noelvis Marte is expected to be a quality shortstop. Greatest Depth - The outfield. Jarred, Julio and Taylor would make a heck of a threesome, but there is only room for two of them.

4. Miami Marlins 31.48 (BA 11, MLB 4) - Sixto Sanchez pitched them into the playoffs last year but he still maintains rookie eligibility and prospect status. Max Meyer and Edward Cabrera join him from the right side. Trevor Rogers and Braxton Garrett are down a few notches on the prospect ranking but they throw from the left side. Recent number one J.J. Bleday is joined by Jesus Sanchez and Monte Harrison in the outfield. Jazz Chisholm appears to have won the second base job, though he can also play shortstop. Lewin Diaz hopes to get another callup to show that he can hit enough to play first base. Greatest Depth - RHP. We have already mentioned Sixto, Max and Edward. A five man rotation just is not large enough when you include Nick Neidert and flame throwing Jorge Guzman, who is still trying to get his triple digit arm healthy.

5. Toronto Blue Jays 25.86 (BA 3, MLB 7) - Austin Martin was their most recent addition, and though he is listed as a shortstop he can play almost anywhere. Nate Pearson is one of the top five hardest throwers in baseball. He may be joined from the right side by Simeon Woods-Richardson and Alek Manoah. Jordan Groshans and Orelvis Martinez are listed at shortstop but they could move to third base. Alejandro Kirk is a tub of goo who can hit, as well as put on the catcher’s gear. Greatest depth - Shortstop. The Jays seem to draft players who can play multiple positions. Jordan and Orelvis are shortstops who could move to third. Austin is listed as a shortstop but can play multiple positions. Otto Lopez is a utility play who has the skills to fill in at shortstop.

6. Arizona Diamondbacks 23.92 (BA 16, MLB 9) - They have a trio of outfielders in Kristian Robinson, Corbin Carroll and Alek Thomas who can create havoc. Corbin and Alek rely more on their speed tool. Kristian is a five tool beast with big time power. Geraldo Perdomo is a fancy glove at short who needs to hit. Daulton Varsho is a catcher who can also play centerfield. His bat is so strong the Diamondbacks can not wait for the long development process for catchers to put him in the lineup. Blake Walston throws from the left side and Matt Tabor from the right. Greatest Depth - The outfield with Kristian, Corbin and Alek and throw in Daulton. Pavin Smith and Seth Beer are both first baseman who can play the outfield but are better at first base.

7. Minnesota Twins 23.24 (BA 8, MLB 12) - The Twins have a couple twin bats in Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach who struggle to play defense if put out in left field but have strong bats that can hit for power. Royce Lewis was a top rated shortstop but knee surgery will force him to miss a second straight year after the corona virus impacted his 2020 season. Jordan Balazovic throws triple digit heat from the right side and could be destined for the bullpen. Peyton Burdick and Misael Urbina are two additional outfielders to watch. Ryan Jeffers is ready to take over the catcher’s job. Jhoan Duran is another right handed arm. Greatest Depth - Left field. Not a position teams want to be strong in. We’ve mentioned Alex and Trevor, but Brent Rooker is another big bat whose defense lacks in quality. If they fill the two corners that will leave a lot of green for the centerfielder to cover.

8. San Francisco Giants 22.58 (BA 15, MLB 11) - Marco Luciano is grooming himself to be the next Wander Franco. If he can stay at shortstop his offensive production will be significant. Joey Bart is ready to move Buster Posey to first base. The outfield will get some talent once Heliot Ramos, Luis Matos and Hunter Bishop are ready. Seth Corry is a talented arm from the left side. Greatest Depth - Catcher and Outfield. You can’t do without catching and the Giants already had Bart, but they still drafted Patrick Bailey, who was considered one of the better defensive catchers in college. Outfield is loaded with Jaylin Davis and Alexander Canario added on to Heliot, Luis and Hunter.

9. Baltimore Orioles 22.18 (BA 7, MLB 5) - The Orioles are still in the process of developing losing teams in order to acquire high draft picks to rise up this list. They used the first pick in the draft to select one of the top catching prospects in the game in Adley Rutschman. Grayson Rodriguez has nasty stuff from the right side. D.L. Hall slings darts from the left side. Ryan Mountcastle and Heston Kjerstad hope to patrol the outfield. Ryan may be best suited for first base, but Chris Davis and Trey Mancini currently occupy this position. Greatest Depth - Shortstop. Though no shortstop is ranked in the Top 100s the trio of Gunner Henderson, Jordan Westburg and Adam Hall hope to patrol what was once a proud position with the Orioles franchise.

10. San Diego Padres 21.20 (BA 6, MLB 6) - C.J. Abrams may be one of the fastest players in baseball. This could create a move from shortstop to centerfield. Taking the position away from Fernando Tatis Jr. is not in the cards this early. McKenzie Gore is one of the best left handed arms in the game. He is joined on the left side by Ryan Weathers and Adrian Morejon. Luis Campusano gives them a good solid catcher who can hit and play defense. Robert Hassell is one of their most recent additions who can patrol centerfield and Ha-Seong Kim can play a utility role. Greatest Depth - Lefthanded pitching. Gore, Weathers and Morejon give them a trio of arms that can throw from the left side.

11. Kansas City Royals 20.76 (BA 14, MLB 10) - Bobby Witt is one of the top minor league prospects in the game. With Adelberto Mondesi at short it appears the Royals will spend the 2021 minor league season finding him a new position. Pitching is a big strength with lefties Asa Lacey and Daniel Lynch and righthander Jackson Kowar. Eric Pena is an outfielder to be watched. Greatest Depth - Left handed Pitching. Austin Cox, Daniel Tillo and Angel Zerpa can not be put on the same pedestal as Lacey and Lynch, but they do give the Royals a lot of options.

12. Chicago White Sox 19.8 (BA 21, MLB 16) - Andrew Vaughn is the big bat that was making waves in the spring. Nick Madrigal will provide defense at second and hit for average, but there is very little pop in his bat to be a truly impact player. Garrett Crochet can throw heat with his left handed arm. He will be used out of the bullpen with a later move to the starting rotation. Michael Kopech can also throw hard but he hasn’t pitched in two years. Two new additions, righthander Jared Kelly and shortstop Carlos Colmenarez will give them reinforcements a couple years down the line. Greatest Depth - Right handed pitching. Michael Kopech may start the season in the bullpen. Kelley is a couple years away. Matthew Thompson, Andrew Delquist and Cuban Norge Vera are other options from the right side. Zach Burdi has to overcome arm injuries before he is ready to contribute.

13. Atlanta Braves 18.78 (BA 5, MLB 15) - Ian Anderson is ready for the starting rotation. No team has a duo of defensive centerfielders as talented as Christian Pache and Drew Waters that are ready for major league action in 2021. Shea Langeliers adds to some solid catching depth. Bryce Ball may have to wait for the DH to be put in place before he can see some playing time at first base. Greatest Depth - Centerfield, lefthanded pitching and Catching. Lots of depth at different positions. Kyle Muller, Jared Shuster and Tucker Davidson gives them some quality lefthanded arms. Pache, Waters and Michael Harris are quality defensive centerfielders. Langeliers, William Contreras and Alex Jackson will be ready to catch in 2021.

14. Pittsburgh Pirates 17.4 (BA 13, MLB 8) - The Pirates are rebuilding. Again. This may be a constant process as players mature and the franchise is unable to keep them. O’Neil Cruz is a talented shortstop who at 6′7″ may be a better fit for right field. Ke’Bryan Hayes is a gold glove defensive third baseman who seemed to find his bat last year once he reached the major leagues. Quinn Priester and Brennan Malone are two right handed arms that could front the rotation. Ji-Hwan Bae is a Korean shortstop whose bat could be a little light. Greatest Depth - Righthanded pitching. Priester and Malone will be the quiet headliners. Adding to the depth are Tahnag Thomas, Cody Bolton, Will Crowe and Jose Soriano.

15. Cleveland Indians 16.26 (BA 10, MLB 13) - Andres Gimenez will be asked to be their shortstop of the present but they have other alternatives in Brayan Roccho and Tyler Freeman. Nolan Gorman at third base could be their best prospect. Tristan McKenzie is having a tough time with his command in the spring. That was his strength last year when he reached the major leagues. Aaron Bracho could be a utility option. George Valera could provide some power in the right field slot, something the Indians have lacked in their previous outfielders. Alexfri Planez is another outfielder to watch. Daniel Espino and Ethan Hawkins are two other pitchers to merit attention. Greatest Depth - Shortstop. With Amed Rosario and Gimenez they have one too many in the major leagues. Waiting for their opportunity are Freeman, Roccho and Gabriel Arias.

16. St. Louis Cardinals 14.56 (BA 12, MLB 17) - Dylan Carlson is a power hitting outfielder whose time to come is 2021. Nolan Gorman needs to move from third base to a corner outfield if he wants to get to play after the trade of Nolan Arenado. Matthew Libertore hopes the 2021 season is his year to shine after Randy Arozarena made headlines in 2020. Greatest Depth - Third Base. They traded for Nolan Arenado, including giving up a quality third baseman in Elehuris Montero to the Rockies in the trade. They are still left with Gorman, Jordan Walker and Malcom Nunez to play the position.

17. New York Yankees 13.76 (BA 18, MLB 18) - The Yankees generally use their prospects as trade bait to acquire veterans who are ready to get them to the playoffs now. It would be a surprise if the Yankees trade Jasson Dominguez, who has quality five tool talent, but is still a teenager. Clarke Schmidt, Deivi Garcia and Luis Medina all fit the bill as trade bait. Greatest Depth. Righthanded Pitching - Schmidt, Garcia and Medina should all see the rotation sometime in 2021. Luis Gil and Albert Abreu are two more quality right handed arms.

18. Cincinnati Reds 12.58 (BA 19, MLB 20) - They lost Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray in a trade for Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp, getting nothing to show for it. They wait for Hunter Greene who is coming back from Tommy John surgery. Jose Garcia is a quality defensive shortstop but he needs another year in the minor leagues to develop his bat. Nick Lodolo has potential in his lefthanded arm. Austin Hendrick is their top draft choice who they hope patrols the outfield in a couple years. Tyler Stephenson has been waiting for his opportunity behind the plate. Greatest Depth - Third Base. They plan to move Eduardo Suarez to shortstop to accommodate Jonathan India. They also have Nick Senzel that can play the position. Rece Hinds is a power bat that could be ready in a couple years.

19. Los Angeles Angels 10.58 (BA 22, MLB 25) - Like the Giants did for Barry Bonds, sacrifice their farm system to get Bonds into the playoffs, the Angels do for Mike Trout. Unfortunately, the best in the farm are outfielders Brandon Marsh, Jordyn Adams and Jo Adell. Reid Detmers is a left handed arm that the Angels always fall short of in the major leagues. Kyren Paris is a shortstop still a couple years away. Greatest depth. Outfield. Add D’shawn Knowles to the list of Marsh, Adams and Adell.

20. Chicago Cubs 10.54 (BA 17, MLB 22) - The Cubs are in that in between position - too many veterans to sign to inflated contracts and not enough depth in the minor leagues. They have talked about trading that veteran presence to acquire minor league talen, but have not done so yet. Lefthander Brailyn Marquez throws triple digits and could be one of the first arms the Cubs have developed in years. Brennen Davis is a stud outfielder who will be ready to patrol the grass soon. Miguel Amaya waits for a trade of Wilson Contreras before he can get his opportunity to catch. Greatest Depth - Shortstop. Lots of young players ready to make an impact. Christian Hernandez, Ed Howard, Reginald Preciado, Kevin Made and Yeison Santana are all names to watch. Some of them could move to second base, others could see the outfield. It all depends on how their bats progress and their bodies maturation process.

21. Boston Red Sox 9.54 (BA 20, MLB 24) - A lack of quality minor leaguers have been preventing them from making trades to provide veterans for playoff runs. So the Red Sox have been stumbling. Jeter Downs is ready to fill in at a middle infield spot. Triston Casas and Bobby Dalbec are power bats whose best fit is first base, but the Red Sox already have some strength there. Gilberto Jimenez could be patrolling centerfield soon. Greatest Depth. First Base. Dalbec and Casas have the power bats ready for the position but the Red Sox already have players in the major leagues fighting for playing time there. Watch for Blaze Jordan to compete for playing time there in a couple years.

22. New York Mets 9.4 (BA 23, MLB 19) - The Mets seem to be acquiring veterans to make a playoff run but they still have some diamonds in their minors. Ronny Mauricio is listed at short, but his best fit may be third base. Brett Baty has a quality name to advertise his bat and is already a fit at third. Francisco Alvarez is another name in a long line of catchers the Mets had hopes for when developing in the minor leagues. They have not had a lot of success there. Peter Crow Armstrong is ready to patrol the outfield and Matt Allan is a quality right handed arm. Greatest Depth - Third base. Baty already plays there and Mauricio has the power bat to eventually move there. Mark Vientos is another player vying for attention at the position.

23. Texas Rangers 8.2 (BA 24, MLB 21) - Years ago the Rangers had the luxury of identifying international talent to stock up their minor league system. They hope to return to that. Luisangel Acuna may not have the tools of his brother, but he could fill a need at short. Josh Jung is their best prospect but his injury during spring training will delay his arrival at third base. Heriberto Hernandez and Sam Huff give them two quality catchers to watch. Maximo Acosta and Kiethron Moss are two quality shortstops competing with Acuna for that middle infield position. Sherton Apostel is a second third base option after Jung’s injury. Dane Dunning is a quality arm the Rangers acquired from the White Sox that should help them in the rotation this year. Greatest Depth - Third Base. While shortstop is also deep, third base has the players who are most ready to compete in Jung and Apostel. Davis Wendzel is also a player to watch.

24. Philadelphia Phillies 7.56 (BA 27, MLB 23) - With the signing of Bryce Harper the Phillies have to get into the playoffs now. No time to keep prospects. They need to justify their spending. Spencer Howard is a righthanded arm that can hit triple digits with his fastball. Francisco Morales is another right handed arm that is prime trade bait. Mick Abel is a right handed arm that won’t need a lot of time to develop. Alec Bohm is already contributing at third base. Bryson Stott and Casey Martin are both unheralded shortstops who could end up in utility roles. Greatest Depth. Right handed pitching. Howard, Morales and Abel are a trio of quality arms. Adonis Medina throws hard and should be added to the mix.

25. Colorado Rockies 6.3 (BA 25, MLB 27) - Despite the trade of Arenado, the farm system looks bleak. Shortstop Brendan Rodgers is ready to contribute now if he can stay healthy. Outfielder Zac Veen is still a couple years away. Those are their only top 100 contenders. Greatest Depth - Left handed pitching. They have a trio of lefthanders in Ryan Rolison, Helacris Oliverez and Lucas Gilbreath who could provide bullpen help or mid rotation depth.

26. Los Angeles Dodgers (BA 9, MLB 14) - Lacking quality top 100 prospects really hurts them in my rankings. Josiah Gray could be the next quality right handed arm who could find a rotation spot in 2021. Keibert Ruiz is a better defensive option behind the plate than Will Smith. Michael Busch and Kody Hoese are infielders who could move around depending on need. Busch currently plays third but has been looked at for second and Hoese is a second baseman who could also fill in at third. Greatest Depth - Catcher. Ruiz is ready to replace Smith in 2021. In a couple years Diego Cartaya could be ready to replace Ruiz.

27. Milwaukee Brewers 4.94 (BA 28, MLB 28) - Garrett Mitchell is a quality outfielder who fell to the Brewers as a late first round pick. Hedbert Perez could join him in the outfield in a couple years. Brice Turang filled the shortstop position for the United States college national team and he hopes to fill that role in the future for the Brewers. Ethan Small is looking to fill a rotation spot with his lefthanded arm. Greatest Depth - Lefthanded pitching. Small, Antoine Kelly and Aaron Ashby will be mid rotation spots or bullpen arms.

28.Oakland Athletics 4.08 (BA 29, MLB 26) - It is not a good sign when a team that does not spend is also ranked low in prospect rankings. Robert Puason is still a couple years away from filling the shortstop role. A.J. Puk has had trouble keeping his left handed arm healthy. Tyler Soderstrom could provide the Athletics help behind the plate in a couple years. Greatest depth - Shortstop. In addition to Puason they have Nick Allen and Logan Davidson who can play there.

29. Houston Astros 3.58 (BA 26, MLB 29) - Once a proud franchise filled with first round picks has now stumbled from their devious ways and been penalized draft picks. That does not help build a farm team. Forest Whitley is a right handed arm whose contribution will be delayed as he undergoes Tommy John surgery. Pedro Leon is an outfielder whose contributions are a couple years away. Greatest Depth - Right handed pitching. Whitely’s contributions have been delayed, but arms like Hunter Brown, Luis Garcia, Jairo Solis, Tyler Ivey and Bryan Abreu are ready to contribute.

30. Washington Nationals .22 (BA 30, MLB 30) - The 2019 World Series was a nice accomplishment. It came at a cost of Jesus Luzardo, Dane Dunning and Lucas Giolito. The righthanded arm of Jackson Rutledge is the only top 100 material. Greatest Depth - Righthanded Pitching. In addition to Rutlege the Nationals hope for development from Cade Cavalli, Cole Henry, Andry Lara and Mason Denaburg.

Myworlds 2021 Top 100 Prospects - The Top Ten

Thursday, March 18th, 2021

Not a lot needs to be said about them. These are the top ten prospects for 2021.

10. Casey Mize RHP (Tigers) - The more we watch the two pitch the more myworld tends to lean with his teammate Tarik Skubal as the better prospect, but we put this list together a month ago and we’ll go with it. When you are the first pick in the 2018 draft it is hard to argue against you. His frame is nice at 6′3″ with a solid 220 pounds, the fastball comes at the hitters in the mid-90s and the splitter is his signature pitch that gets lots of swings and misses. His slider is also a plus pitch that can get hitters out. What he lacks is a soft pitch that can keep hitters off balance. He made his major league debut last year and seemed pretty hittable. A 6.99 ERA with 7 homeruns in 28 innings with a .252 opponent average. That is a bit disappointing. Even the best pitchers who eventually win multiple Cy Youngs have their struggles in their first and second years. Mize should win a starting spot in the Tigers rotation in 2021. With better command of his pitches he should do better his second time around. There are some that have concerns about his delivery that will make him susceptible to injury. He has not tapered those concerns, missing some time to injuries during the season.

9. Austen Marten SS (Blue Jays) - The second highest ranked pick of the 2020 draft. Myworld saw him in the College World Series, but we came away more impressed with J.J Bleday. Austen played multiple positions with Vanderbilt. That could be to his advantage with the Blue Jays. They have a number of players on their team who play multiple positions and they can mix and match until they get the best result. His best fit appears to be second base. His arm was always an issue with Vanderbilt as far as strength and accuracy. His bat will get him in the lineup, hitting just three points shy of .400. The Jays were surprised to see him available when their turn came up with the fifth pick in the draft. His power may not be enough to fit at third or a corner outfield, and his speed is a bit short to cover centerfield. Expect him to rise quickly, perhaps finishing at AA in 2021 and fitting himself in the Blue Jays lineup in 2022 as a super utility player or second baseman.

8. Marco Luciano SS (Giants) - Marco is still an untested commodity that comes with a lot of hype. The Giants spent $2.6 million to sign him in 2018. He made his minor league debut in 2019 and hit .322 with 10 homeruns and a .616 slugging percentage. The bat certainly came as advertised with a lot of pop. The challenge for Marco is sticking at shortstop. He lacks speed to have the range required of a shortstop and as he matures and gets bigger that speed should decrease. He has the power and the arm to move to third. Marco won’t turn 20 until September so A ball will be good for him to start the 2021 season. His first appearance with the Giants may not be until late 2023.

7. C.J. Abrams SS (Padres) - The sixth pick in the 2019 draft has some burner speed. Some think that centerfield would be the best position for him. The tools are there to stick at shortstop. Normally a player with his speed lacks pop, but C.J. had enough pop to slug .647 in A ball in 2019. Part of that was his speed as he turned gap hits into triples (8 in 34 games). C.J. makes good contact with a 11/14 walk to whiff ratio resulting in a .393 average. The numbers for his first year were pretty impressive. The potential is there for him to exceed 40 stolen bases and hit in the teens in homeruns, with the speed to turn singles into doubles and doubles into triples. C.J. will start the 2021 season in A ball. With Fernando Tatis filling the Padres shortstop position there is no need to rush Abrams to the major league club. But centerfield is always a possibility if Tatis is still at short when Abrams is ready in 2022.

6. Julio Rodriguez OF (Mariners) - The Dominican prospect who signed with the Mariners in 2017 for $1.75 million is a multi tooled athlete that can play centerfield. Speed may be his least raved about tool and as he gets bigger right field could be a better fit. Especially with Kelenic keeping pace with him as they climb up the minor league ladder. The 2019 season was his first in the States and he hit .326 with a .540 slugging percentage. Most of his damage was done in a 17 game performance in the California League (.462/.738). The power is there for him to reach 40 plus homeruns and still hit in the .300 neighborhood. After his massacre of California League pitchers last year he could begin 2021 in AA which could result in a promotion late in 2021, if service time does not become an issue.

5. Andrew Vaughn 1B (White Sox) - The third player selected in the 2019 draft is hitting so well in spring that many see him making the team as a first baseman and leaving Jose Abreu free to hit in the designated hitter slot. While he has a right handed bat and only stands 6′0″, a frame that most scouts don’t like in a major league first base prospect, hit bat produces a lot of hits with power. The two tools he lacks are speed and the ability to play a quality first base with the glove. The patience is there for him to draw a number of walks. When all is said and done he could reach the major leagues hitting 30 homeruns, hitting over .300 with 100 plus walks for a OBA over .400. The White Sox will be a playoff contender in 2021. If they feel the bat of Vaughn will help them get into the playoffs he will be on their roster in 2021.

4. Spencer Torkelson 1B (Tigers) - The highest ranked pick in the 2020 draft. The Tigers have the belief that he can play third, but myworld does not have a lot of confidence in that. He stands 6′1 and weighs 220 pounds. Spencer has a lot of traits similar to Vaughn, a right handed bat who is not big in stature but with a bat that is projected to hit over .300 with 30 plus homeruns. One bright spot on his resume is that he hit 25 homeruns in his freshman year at Arizona State, besting alumni Barry Bonds in that department when Bonds was a freshman. Like Vaughn he has the patience to draw a lot of walks. As a college pick he could be moved quickly but the Tigers will probably not use up his service time in 2021 and save him for a late 2022 callup.

3. Adley Rutschman C (Orioles) - Adley has a lot of similarities to another catcher that was drafted highly, Matt Wieters. And while Adley was the first player selected in the 2019 draft and Wieters was the fifth pick, they still have much in common. The most prevalent is the tools to turn a franchise around. Wieters hit .355 with 27 homeruns in his first full minor league season, but it was all down hill after that. Rutschman hopes for more consistency in his seasons. In 2019 he led Oregon State to a College World Series championship. The bat contains the power to hit 20 plus homeruns per year, and despite his 6′2′ height he moves deftly behind the plate. Myworld would not be surprised to see Adley make his major league debut in 2021, but service time obligations may leave him down in the minor leagues until 2022.

2. Jarred Kelenic OF (Mariners) - The teammate of Julio Rodriguez, Jarred was the sixth player taken in the 2018 draft by the Mets. The Mets traded him to the Mariners for Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz. The Mariners may learn to hate that deal in 2024, when the Mariners appear in the playoffs and the Mets are still scrambling to find a playoff spot. Kelenic has the speed to play centerfield. His arm is solid, but may be best suited for left field. The power is not as great as Rodriguez, but he was able to slug 23 homeruns in 2019, rising all the way to AA. Expect him to start the season at AA with a late season promotion in 2021.

1. Wander Franco SS (Rays) - Not a lot needs to be said about Wander. This is the second year in a row he has rated at the top of myworld’s list. The only concern about him is whether he can stick at shortstop. The Rays currently have Willy Adames at that position. Adames does not have the bat of Franco, but he has a better glove. So this spring the Rays have been putting Franco at other positions. They may continue this experiment in 2021, after he is sent down to the minor leagues, playing him at multiple positions to groom him for a starting spot with the Rays for a playoff run in 2021. Franco has the potential of a player to win batting titles while hitting over 40 homeruns per year. His walk to whiff ratio in two minor league seasons is 83/54. He also stole 18 bases in 2019. Franco can do anything, including playing shortstop if an opening exists.

Athletics Offer One Suite for One Bit Coin

Monday, March 15th, 2021

The Bit Coin appears to be here to stay. The Oakland Athletics are offering fans an opportunity to purchase a suite, and all it will cost is one bit coin. The bit coins price fluctuates depending on the market, but it is estimated that the market for one bit coin is the equivalent of $57,000.

The offer is only good until April 1. Normal costs for suites are $64,800. The Athletics have never had an easy time selling tickets to their games. The bit coin is an interesting marketing tool to entice fans to purchase a suite. The challenge will be how many people can you fill in the suite. It is expected that California will only allow 20% fan capacity to all sporting events. This may make it difficult for a person who purchase a suite to split the cost in a more economically favorable manner.

Take it from one who has purchased a minor league suite. You never break even in these ventures.

Myworlds 2021 Top 100 Prospects 20-11

Sunday, March 14th, 2021

The prospect countdown continues. Three Tigers and two Twins form half of this group.

20. Nick Gonzalez SS/2b (Pirates) - Pretty high ranking for a player who has yet to play a minor league season. He was the seventh player taken in the 2020 draft. He is also tearing it up this spring and if it was not the Pirates concern for service time he could earn the second base job in 2021. In college Gonzalez played at New Mexico State where balls can fly. It was not until he hit .351 with a .630 slugging percentage in the Cape Cod League that scouts took notice. His power may be limited more to the gaps rather than over the fence, but he could compete for batting titles once he is called up, the National League version of Nick Madrigal, with better offense and less defense. On defense he lacks the arm or range to play short, though he runs well. As a college drafted player he could rise quickly if service time issues are not followed. The 2022 season should see him in a Pirates uniform.

19. Joey Bart C (Giants) - Buster Posey opted out of the 2020 season. With no minor leagues the Giants rushed the second pick in the 2018 draft to the majors. It did not go well. Bart only hit .233 with a .288 OBA. Lesson learned. His minor league numbers indicate a player who will hit for a decent average (.270) with some pop (20 plus homeruns and .532 slugging). He also has a good arm with solid defensive tools behind the plate. With Posey back for the 2021 season Bart will be allowed to marinate some more in the minor leagues. He could get a late season callup in 2021, but should be the Giants starting catcher by 2023. It all depends on the Giants decision on moving Posey to first base to accommodate Bart.

18. Royce Lewis SS (Twins) - Royce has been on the prospect list for a long time. An injured knee will force him to miss the 2021 season. If this had happened prior to myworld putting this list together Royce would have dropped significantly. It is not that myworld has doubts about Royce recovering from this injury. It is just that many other shortstops have now surpassed him. He should take a look at Chipper Jones and his struggles with injuries that delayed his major league arrival. Royce has the hit tools and the speed to be an impact player. The Twins were actually moving him around to different positions (centerfield) to make him more attractive once a major league job opens up. The 2019 season was a rough year for him when hit just .236 with a .290 OBA. That left a sour taste in his mouth. With no minor leagues in 2020 and missing the 2021 season it will be a lot longer before Royce can lose that sour taste. Look for him to make the Twins sometime late in the 2022 season.

17. Riley Greene OF (Tigers) - For this Tiger first round pick in the 2019 draft it is all about the bat. His first year in the minor leagues he hit .271 with a .403 slugging percentage. At 6′3″ that power should increase as he gets stronger and becomes more confident in using wood bats. The speed is there to play center, but he fits better at a corner with a power bat and a strong arm. In 2019 the bat was good enough to reach Low A. He should be ready for High A in 2021 and reach the Tigers by the 2022 season.

16. Alex Kirilloff 1B/OF (Twins) - The 2016 first round pick is almost a carbon copy of Trevor Larnach, who is a bit lower down on the prospect ranking. They both have power bats, but lack the defensive tools for them to be good outfielders. With practice and repetition Alex can be an adequate outfielder. Ultimately he may have to move to first base, where the power in his bat needs to accompany him. In his first full season in 2018 he hit .348 with 20 homeruns and a .578 slugging percentage. He was not able to replicate that in 2019 (.283/.413). A wrist injury may have limited his swing in 2019. Knee surgery forced him to miss the 2017 season, so injuries have been a concern. The Twins released Eddie Rosario, their starting left fielder in 2020. With a good spring the left field position should go to Alex for the 2021 season.

15. Tarik Skubal LHP (Tigers) - Many have felt that Tarik came out of nowhere. He was a ninth round pick in 2018. That was not for lack of talent, but because of Tommy John surgery that limited his college career. The Tigers may have drafted him late but they paid above slot to sign him ($350,000). His first season he dominated with a 0.40 ERA and a .192 opponent average. His walk to whiff ratio was a pleasant 4/33. He continued to make waves in the 2019 season (2.42 ERA, .196 opponent average). Tarik has not had a poor minor league season. In 2020 he made his major league debut and while his ERA (5.63) was high his other numbers still impressed. Giving up nine homeruns in 32 innings hurt him. It may be sometime in May before the Tigers put him in the 2021 rotation, but with a mid 90s fastball and two quality secondary offerings his stuff will force the Tigers to bring him up early in the 2021 season.

14. Jasson Dominguez OF (Yankees) - When talking about Jasson it is difficult not to think about Mickey Mantle. Jasson is only 18 and has yet to make his stateside debut. The Yankees spent $5.1 million to sign him in 2019. The super star tools are there. He runs well, hits well and for power, and plays a mean centerfield. There is very little not to like when you watch this potential phenom play the game. Don’t be surprised after one minor league season in 2021 he will be number one on this list for 2022. Jasson will start 2021 in A ball and could see the Yankees by his 20th birthday. If Juan Soto can do it, so can Jasson Dominguez.

13. Matt Manning RHP (Tigers) - A third Tiger on this list and the second to fill the rotation. The 2016 first round pick stands an imposing 6′6″ with a fastball that strikes the lower edges of the mid-90s. That velocity could increase as he matures. The curveball could be his best pitch, with a high spin rate and a large drop that is ripe for swings and misses. Manning was a high school pick so it has taken him some time to climb up the minor league ladder. He had his best year in 2019 pitching at AA (2.56 ERA), limiting the opposition to a .192 average. With Casey Mize and Skubal just ahead of him Matt will take later in the 2021 season before he is promoted to the Tigers. That would make a talented trifecta for the Tigers rotation.

12. Luis Patino RHP (Rays) - Patino was traded by the Padres to the Rays after the 2020 season to acquire Blake Snell. The Padres found Luis while scouting in Colombia and signed him for just $130,000. At 6′1″ he is not a big presence like Manning, but he whips that fastball across the plate into the mid to high 90s. His slider is also a very good swing and miss pitch. Luis made his Padres debut last year, appearing in 11 games with one start. His command was shaky with the big club, walking 14 in just 17 innings for a poor 5.19 ERA. Prior to that he had only pitched two games in AA. The Rays can be patient with Patino and could start him in AA to begin the 2021 season. A promotion to the big club should happen sometime before the end of the year.

11. Bobby Witt Jr SS (Royals) - Myworld first saw Bobby hit when he won the homerun contest at the Futures Games in 2019, beating out Rece Hinds. The Royals must have liked what they saw because they made him the second player selected in the 2019 draft. His father was a major league pitcher for a number of years so the gene pool is there. The Junior plans on doing most of his damage with the bat. The defensive tools are there for him to stick at short. With his power bat that would make him an offensive shortstop in the mold of an Alex Rodriguez. He did get a brief 2019 minor league season, hitting .262 with a .354 slugging. He showed his speed by collecting five triples in just 37 games. The Royals are saving the shortstop job for Witt, meaning they may not sign Adalberto Mondesi to an extension. Witt could be the Royals shortstop in 2022, but that would require him to reach AA by 2021.

Myworlds Top 2021 Prospects 30-21

Wednesday, March 10th, 2021

With the speed of the Cuban playoffs, the prospect countdown continues.

30. Trevor Larnach OF (Twins) - Trevor is a little like the outfielder he is competing against for the left field position vacated by Eddie Rosario. The 2018 first round pick is not noted for his speed which makes playing the outfield a challenge for him. He was a teammate of Nick Madrigal for the Oregon State College World Series team in 2018. At 6′4″ he carries a hefty bat that will contribute a lot of power once in the lineup. The arm is a fit for right field, but the Twins opening outfield spot is left field. Trevor has a career .307 average in his two year minor league career with a .468 slugging. Alex will probably win the left field job, but Trevor has enough bat to find his way into the lineup, either as a DH or rightfielder in 2021. It would be a challenging outfield with both Alex and Trevor in the corners.

29. Grayson Rodriguez RHP (Orioles) - The 11th pick in the 2018 draft has an array of quality pitches in his arsenal. At 6′5″ he also has an impressive frame. His fastball sits in the mid-90s and a quality change up makes it appear faster. His slider is a swing and miss pitch and the curve gives him two quality breaking pitches. Grayson has so many weapons at his disposal. If he has a weak point it may be his inconsistent command. In 2019 he walked 36 hitters in 94 innings at Low A, a little more than teams prefer, but he only gave up 57 hits for a .171 opponent average. That equates to a WHIP less than one. Grayson will start 2021 in High A, but could be quickly promoted with success. By 2023 he should be pitching in the Orioles rotation and by 2025 he should be their ace.

28. Vidal Brujan 2B (Rays) - Speed will be his game. The Rays signed him to a $5000 bonus out of the Dominican Republic, so he has turned into quite a bargain, something the low cost Rays thrive on. In his last two years he stole 103 bases. The down side in his game is that he has very little power. More and more teams are looking for pop at this position. Stolen bases are also not as valued. Until 2019 his walks almost equaled his whiffs. As he rises up the minor league ladder and reaches the major leagues those walk to whiff ratios could expand even more. If Vidal could keep his OBA high it would create an ideal top of the lineup hitter, but a number of low power, high speed guys have failed to keep their second base job. Brujan does have the tools to play short, so he could be used in a utility role, which could increase his value to a major league club. Vidal will start the 2021 season in AA and could be promoted to the Rays that year to take advantage of his speed in a playoff race.

27. McKenzie Gore LHP (Padres) - McKenzie is considered to be by many the top pitching prospect in baseball. The third pick in the 2017 draft was troubled by blisters in 2018, which created ugly numbers in ERA (4.45) and batting average against (.260). He bounced back in 2019 improving those numbers to a 1.69 ERA and a .164 opposition average. His strikeout to walk ratio also improved. At 6′2″ he is not a big guy and his fastball is a less than overpowering low 90s. The two breaking pitches and the change, plus the movement on his fastball and his ability to locate his pitches make him a tough at bat. With a good spring he could sneak his way into the Padres rotation, but he struggled in AA in 2019 so that could be his location for the start of 2021. Expect a callup by mid-season.

26. Drew Waters OF (Braves) - While Drew is a pretty talented centerfielder, he falls a bit short defensively to Pache. The second round 2107 pick has the arm to play right and the bat to fill the corner outfield position. In 2019 he won the AA batting title with a .319 average and was voted the MVP of the league. His bat is probably more consistent than Pache, with a little more punch. For 2019 he showed enough pop to spray the gaps for 40 doubles. As he matures the Braves hope some of those gap hits will carry over the fence. The big concern in his game is the 164 whiffs in just 134 games. He also lacks the patience to take a walk, swinging too much at a pitcher’s pitch out of the strike zone. Pache was the first to reach the majors but Waters should join him in 2021 giving the Braves one of the most talented pair of outfielders defensively.

25. Ian Anderson RHP (Braves) - The 2016 first round pick will not overwhelm you with power. His fastball can ride up into the mid-90s, but it sits more comfortably in the low 90s, where Ian can control it more. His curveball plays well off his fastball which results in a ton of swings and misses. In 2019 Ian struck out 172 hitters in just 135.2 innings. The change is the third pitch that can get hitters chasing. Ian made his major league debut in 2020 and shined. He finished with a 1.95 ERA in six starts limiting major league hitters to a .172 average. He also continued to be a strike out machine, whiffing 41 batters in 32.1 innings. Ian can have bouts of inconsistency with his command, but those were limited with the Braves. A full season could define those warts, or allow them to show up more frequently. Ian should be in the Braves rotation in 2021.

24. Corbin Carroll OF (Diamondbacks) - The 2019 first round pick shows excellent speed to patrol centerfield and streak around the bases. In his one brief minor league season he hit seven triples in just 42 games and stole 18 bases. The 5′10″ outfielder may lack the strength to ever hit for any power, but his defense in centerfield should save some runs and he will create havoc on the bases. It also appears he shows some patience at the plate with 29 walks in just 42 games. The 2021 season should see him begin the year in A ball with quick promotions to AA if he handles himself well. He and fellow Diamondback outfielder Alek Thomas have the same speed first, lack of power tool set that will be tough to fit them both in the outfield. The Diamondbacks may choose one to play center and trade the other for roster help.

23. Asa Lacey LHP (Royals) - The first round 2020 pick has a wicked lefthanded arm that can scatter mid-90s fastballs all around the plate. A 6′4″ frame and two devastating breaking pitches creates a fastball that is just more dangerous. His change is also a plus pitch. The two big challenges for Asa is his inconsistency to find the plate, and the absence of a 2020 season that would have allowed him to get into a rhythm. Asa pitched three seasons for Texas A&M, so he could rise quickly. Royals fans should expect to see him in 2022.

22. Kristian Robinson OF (Diamondbacks) - Christian may be the top rated player out of the Bahamas. The Diamondbacks provided a $2.5 million bonus to sign him. All the tools exist to make him a five tool player. Power is probably his best tool, but even at 6′3″ he carries the speed that could result in 30 or more stolen bases. That speed and a strong arm will make any outfield position fit. The bat should make him a superstar. In 2019 he slugged 14 homeruns in just 69 games for a .514 slugging percentage. His speed allowed him to steal 17 bases. While he hit .287 there is still not a lot of contact in his swing. He struck out 77 times, but there is still enough patience in his at bats that he was able to walk 31 times. At only 20 years of age, Kristian still has a lot of development to do. A little more time at A ball in 2021 could lead to AA with some success. He could arrive in late 2022 with the Diamondbacks in a September callup.

21. Sixto Sanchez RHP (Marlins) - The Phillies originally signed Sixto in 2015 out of the Dominican Republic for a paltry $35,000. They included him in a trade for J.T. Realmuto in what they hoped would be a playoff run. That playoff never arrived and instead the Marlins surprised everyone by making the playoffs in 2020 and Sixto led the charge. Throwing a fastball that routinely hits triple digits, Sixto got seven starts with the Marlins and rewarded them with three wins and a 3.42 ERA in those starts. The fastball is his bread and butter, but Sixto has the ability to mix in a quality change, curve and cutter. He also knows how to command the pitches. The only concern about him is his smallish 6′0″ frame and his 230 plus pounds, which is not a recipe for health. Provided he can stay healthy he should be the ace of a talented Marlins staff in 2021.

Top Puerto Rican Prospects

Saturday, March 6th, 2021

The major league draft has been a drain for youths who wish to play baseball in Puerto Rico. Prior to being included in the draft major league teams followed international rules and signed Puerto Rican players once they reached 16 years of age. Once Puerto Rico was included in the draft major league teams could not sign players until after they completed high school.

The challenge with that is many high schools in Puerto Rico do not play baseball. So if a youth beyond 16 wants to continue his baseball career he has to go to one of the academies. If the family does not have money that can be a drain on the pocketbook, though myworld is certain scholarships are offered to talented prospects with pay back coming once the youth signs a contract.

Last year, in the 2020 shortened five round draft no Puerto Rican was selected by major league baseball. The draft will now be chopped to twenty rounds from the traditional forty rounds. That will make it even tougher for Puerto Rican youngsters to be drafted. That is a loss for baseball, as youths now turn to soccer or basketball for their sport of choice. If not for the academies, baseball would probably be dead in Puerto Rico.

Below are the top ten prospects to watch from Puerto Rico. I could have missed someone because many Puerto Ricans now travel stateside to continue their baseball careers. Willi Castro is the only player to graduate from last year’s list. He was the third rated prospect. Edwin Rios saw some major league time.

1. Heliot Ramos OF (Giants) - I believe he may have been the last Puerto Rican drafted in the first round, selected by the Giants in 2017. Ramos has above average grades in all the tools categories, but power and a strong right field arm may be his best tools. While he has the speed to play center, it is not in the burner category, so right field could be his best fit. Much of the speed he had when drafted has been lost as he has matured and gotten bigger. The power should equate to 25-30 homeruns per year, though hitting homeruns in the Giants stadium is not easy. He did recover from a poor 2018 season when he slugged just .396. In 2019 he raised his average 45 points (.290) and his slugging average almost 100 points (.496). Expect him to make his major league debut sometime late in 2021, especially if he has a good spring.

2. Mario Feliciano C (Brewers) - Mario was the 75th player selected in the 2016 draft, a second round supplemental pick. Puerto Rico has been known for developing catchers with the Molina brothers, Sandy Alomar Jr., Ivan Rodriguez, Jorge Posada and Benito Santiago, just to name a few. Mario hopes to add his name to that list. His arm is top notch, but his bat could be even better. In 2019 his bat broke out for 19 homeruns with a .270 average. There is still too much swing and miss in his game (143 whiffs in 119 games) and he needs to improve in the other defensive areas of the game, such as pitch framing and calling a game. He played three games in AA in 2019. That may be where he starts the 2021 season with a callup possible this year. Catchers can sometimes take longer to develop so don’t expect a larger role for him until 2023.

3. Edwin Rios 3B/1B (Dodgers) - The Dodgers resigned Justin Turner, but for baseball he is at that age where he will need soe down time to rejuvenate. Expect Edwin to be that replacement. The sixth round 2015 pick saw a lot of power in 2020, with eight homeruns in just 32 games. While his slugging average reached .645 his OBA was only .301. In a brief appearance with the Dodgers in 2019 he slugged .617 with a .393 OBA. That year he also hit a career high 31 homeruns in AAA. So the power in his bat is a real threat. His defense at third can be a little awkward as might be expected from someone who is 6′3″ so his best position could be first base. If the DH arrives in the National League next year he could see a more permanent presence in the Dodgers lineup. Expect him to be with the Dodgers in 2021 playing a bench role to cover the corner infield positions.

4. Matthew Lugo SS (Red Sox) - The second round 2019 second round pick has some pretty impressive blood lines. He is the nephew of Carlos Beltran. If he can harness just half of Beltran’s production the Red Sox would consider him a success. The power genes have so far not appeared with Matthew as they did for Carlos. In his first and only minor league season in 2019 he only hit one homerun and slugged .326. The Red Sox hope the power will come as he matures. His defensive actions at short may rely more on his quickness than his speed. Matthew carries above average speed to stick at short and his arm is strong, but it will never measure up to the elite shortstops on defense. The Red Sox have Jeter Downs rated ahead of him for a middle infield spot, but with a good 2021 season Matthew could put himself on the spot light. Expect him to start the 2021 season in A ball, with a Red Sox arrival time delayed until 2023.

5. Jose DeLeon RHP (Reds) - Jose has been on this list for a number of years. It took until the 24th round for the Dodgers to draft him in 2013. That would not make him a drafted player in 2021. He was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays prior to the 2017 season but arm injuries limited his first year with the Rays and Tommy John surgery prevented him from playing in 2018. The Rays traded him to the Reds after the 2019 season. Now that he is finally healthy he could be a back end rotation piece or fill a bullpen role for the Reds in 2021. His fastball has increased a couple ticks, getting to the low end of the mid-90s spectrum. His change has been his best pitch, but with the increased velocity on his fastball there is clearer separation. A slider gives him a third pitch to be a starter. The Reds gave him five opportunities to pitch in the bullpen in 2020 but he gave up 12 runs in those six innings, walking 11 and striking out 10. At 29 years of age he needs to make the Reds pitching mix for the 2021 season or be released to the free agent market. Whether he makes the team will be dependent on his spring performance.

6. Erik Rivera LHP/OF (Angels) - The Angels love their duality. After signing Shohei Ohtani from Japan as a pitcher/hitter they have made a practice of drafting players who have the ability to pitch and hit. Erik was a fourth round pick in 2019 for his ability to both hit and pitch. With a fastball that sits in the low 90s, a big bender curveball and change his best rout to the majors may be his arm. There is power in his bat, but that comes with a lot of difficulty making contact. In 2019 he struck out 31 times in 21 games. Erik should start the 2021 season in A ball, with a more games behind the mound than at the plate.

7. Yan Contreras SS (Reds) - Yan did not get drafted until the 12th round of the 2019 draft. Right now defense is his game and the tools are there for him to stick at shortstop. The big question is whether his bat will hit enough to see the major leagues. Currently, he lacks any kind of power, but the hope is that at 6′2″ that power can be developed. In his 20 game minor league debut in 2019 he hit only .145. He did show the ability to walk with 14 and his two triples and four stolen bases in five attempts does show some game like speed. It will be a stretch for him to be a major leaguer, but 2021 will see his journey start in A ball.

8. Jivani Moran LHP (Twins) - A seventh round 2015 draft pick. His first year with the Twins they put him in the rotation, but after that most of his time has been spent in the bullpen. The strikeout numbers are very impressive, but that is not because of the velocity of his fastball. His career totals are 224 whiffs in just 158 innings. Those swings and misses can be attributed to his change that is unhittable at the minor league level. Those strikeout numbers increased at AA (13.1 per 9 innings) but his ERA sky rocketed (4.98). The big challenge will be whether his change can fool major league hitters. That test may come sometime in 2021.

9. Edwin Diaz utility (Athletics) - The 2013 15th round pick has been shuttling around the game a bit. The 2019 season could see him make his debut as a utility player for the Athletics. In 2019 he played a lot of third and short. Edwin lacks the range to play short on a consistent basis and his bat lacks the power to be a starter at third, but if you need a fill in he could be a valuable commodity to play both. His minor league career high for homeruns is 15 in 2018, but he hit 14 in 2019. His batting average can be a bit problematic, sitting in the low .200s the last couple years. The Athletics have a shortage at the middle infield position so the 2021 season will be an opportunity for Diaz to fill a role. At 25 years of age, his time is now.

10. Delvin Perez (Cardinals) - To be honest myworld could not find anyone else. Delvin was a first round pick of the Cardinals in 2016. Perez dominated in the Puerto Rican leagues, but his bat has fallen short in the minor leagues. The defensive tools are there but the bat is awfully silent. The lack of a 2020 season gave him no opportunity to improve on his paltry .325 slugging percentage in 2019. His career slugging percentage in the minor leagues since being drafted is .317. Defensively, he made 24 errors in 2019 at short and that will also need to improve. His best hope is some power develops, he gains some defensive consistency and he rises up the minor league ladder after a successful 2021 season in High A.

Myworlds 2021 Top Prospects 40-31

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2021

The continuation of our Top 100 prospects for 2021.

40 Brailyn Marquez LHP (Cubs) - A left handed arm who hits triple digits on the radar gun is a prized commodity. When he signed in 2015 for $600,000 he was already hitting the low 90s. Like a weed in a garden he has grown to 6′4″, a nice frame for a pitcher. His secondary pitches (slider and change) need further refinement and he has issues finding the strike zone. If this continues Brailyn could find himself in the bullpen. If his secondary pitches improve and he locates his pitches better he could find himself in the number one starter’s slot. The Cubs have developed a number of hitters through their farm system, but finding pitching has been a challenge. Marquez could be the first pitching star developed by the Cubs in the Theo Epstein era. He did make his major league debut last year, appearing in relief in one game, retiring only two batters while walking three and giving up two hits. He left after that outing with a 67.50 ERA. He could find himself in the Cubs rotation or bullpen by mid-season of 2021.

39. Brennen Davis OF (Cubs) - Another Cub, but Brennen was a second round pick of the 2018 draft. He signed for $1.1 million. Brennen has all the tools you look for in a superstar player. He has the speed to stick in center, the arm to move to right, the bat to hit .300 and the power to slug 20 plus homeruns per season. A finger injury limited him to 50 games in his lone full season minor league opportunity. He hit .305, slugged eight homeruns for a .906 OPS. He is also a very good athlete, having starred in basketball in high school and winning the defensive player of the year honors while leading his team to a state championship. A absent 2020 season hurt Brennen in the development department. He will probably start the 2021 season in High A and hope to be playing in Wrigley sometime late in 2022 or 2023.

38. Nolan Gorman 3B (Cardinals) - The Cardinals are loaded with third baseman. They traded one of them to Colorado but in return obtained one of the best third baseman in the game in Nolan Arenado. That creates some difficulty for the 2018 first round pick to squeeze into the starting lineup. Nolan has some impressive power, but his ability to make consistent contact is a concern. Last year he struck out 152 times in 125 games to keep his average at .248. On defense Nolan has a strong arm, but lacks quickness to be an elite defender. His lack of speed makes him a liability if he was to move to the outfield. Nolan may have to move to first base or be traded if he wants to have a major league career as a third baseman. Once he learns to make better contact he could be a 30 plus homerun hitter in the major leagues in 2023.

37. Jordan Groshans 3B/SS (Blue Jays) - While Jordan is listed as a shortstop, he lacks the range to play the position on a permanent basis. The 2018 first round pick of the Blue Jays has the power to move to third. He just has to be fortunate Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is a defensive liability at that position. A foot injury ended his 2019 minor league season early after only 23 games. He hit .337 with two homeruns for a .482 slugging. At 6′3″ he is expected to develop more power to be a good fit at third. Jordan walked 13 times in those 23 games for a .427 OBA. This walk total almost equaled his 2018 half a season when he played 48 games. The 2021 season may be the year Jordan moves permanently to third, starting off in High A and hopefully moving up quickly so he can arrive with the Blue Jays sometime in 2023.

36. Christian Pache OF (Braves) - There is speed and quality defense from this 2015 Dominican who signed for $1.4 million. Whether he wins any gold gloves is not a detraction of his defensive prowess, but whether his bat will be good enough to play as a major league regular. If his rating for speed, arm and defense were reversed and applied to his hitting tools Pache would be a super star top five prospect. He made his major league debut last year, playing in two games and coming to the plate four times. In 2019 he hit .277 and reached double digits in homeruns for the first time (12). His first two years in minor league ball covering 689 at bats he failed to hit a homerun. His strikeouts can be excessive (122 in 130 games) and his speed does not create stolen base numbers. He will start the 2021 season in AAA and provided he puts up good numbers will earn his way to the starting centerfield spot before the All Star break.

35. Dylan Carlson OF (Cardinals) - The first round 2016 pick is a plus in the tools department. He has the speed to play center, the arm to fit in right, the bat to hit for power and the patience to lay off pitches out of the strike zone. Like many prospects who did not have a 2020 minor league season, he made his major league debut last year and struggled. In 110 at bats he hit just .200 with a .252 OBA the result of a poor 8/35 walk to whiff ratio. He had his breakout season in 2019 when he hit 26 homeruns with a .292 batting average in the minor leagues. The 2021 season will be key to determine if he can replicate those numbers and get another opportunity to play in the major leagues. With a good spring it would be tough for the Cardinals to send him down.

34. Emerson Hancock RHP (Mariners) - Not a lot is known about the 2020 first round pick other than what he did in college pitching for Georgia. He may have been the best pitcher in college early in 2019, but an injury forced him to miss a couple weeks. When he returned from the injury and extending in the shortened 2020 season he has not been as dominant. He has a deep repertoire with a mid-90s fastball that can rise into the high 90s. two quality breaking pitches and a top of the bell change. He also has solid command of his pitches and carries himself at 6′4. The tools are there for him to be an ace. The 2021 season will confirm whether he can meet those expectations. He will probably start the season in A ball and as a college drafted player move quickly once he achieves success. The Mariners seem to be in no rush to promote players so don’t expect Hancock to see the Mariners until late 2022 or 2023, or when they are ready to make a playoff run.

33. O’Neil Cruz SS (Pirates) - Can a player who stands 6′7 really fit at shortstop? The Pirates hope so. Originally signed by the Dodgers in 2015 for $950,000, they traded him to the Pirates for Tony Watson. He has grown three inches since the signing. The power he can generate when he extends his arms is impressive, but his strike zone is large. A very strong arm gives him an opportunity to move to right field but his athleticism give the Pirates hope he can continue at short. A foot injury limited his 2019 season to just 73 games. He also stayed in the Dominican for much of the 2020 season, got into a traffic accident where two people were killed. There was some concern he could be criminally charged for creating the accident, but he is in spring training so everything appears to have been resolved. He should make his Pirates debut in 2021 after starting the season in AA.

32. J.J. Bleday OF (Marlins) - Myworld witnessed one of his homeruns in the College World Series. The Marlins were also pretty impressed, making him the fourth player selected in the 2019 draft. The Marlins had him start his career in the Florida State League, where he hit .257 with a .379 slugging percentage. His lack of speed will never allow him to fit in center, but he has a strong arm and plays a solid defense without a lot of speed. In his college career he walked more than he struck out, but his first minor league season that did not ring true with a 11/29 walk to whiff ratio in 38 games. J.J will be a fast riser up the Marlins minor league season, beginning 2021 in AA with a major league promotion in 2022.

31. Nate Pearson RHP (Blue Jays) - You can probably count the number of pitchers who throw harder than Nate on one hand. His fastball visits triple digits regularly and he combines it with a excellent slider. The Blue Jays 2017 first round pick also has an above average change and the command to stick in the rotation. His 6′6 frame makes him a terror for batters to face. In 2019 he limited minor league hitters to a .176 average, striking out 119 hitters in just 101.2 innings. Last year he made his major league debut, struggled with his command (13 walks in 18 innings) resulting in five homeruns and a 6.00 ERA. The Blue Jays hope he can find his command issues and if so he could squeeze into the Blue Jays starting rotation out of spring training in 2021.

Myworlds Top 2021 Prospects 50-41

Sunday, February 28th, 2021

Shortstops dominate this ten, especially if you fit in Jeter Downs as a shortstop. Righthanded pitchers follow with four. The cool thing about today is that spring training games for the major leagues began. Looking at box scores again was a pleasant experience.

50. Max Meyer RHP (Marlins) - Meyer is a 2020 first round pick, the third player taken in the draft. He starred at Minnesota, beginning his college career as a closer and then moving into the starting rotation as a sophomore. At only 6′0″ he does not have the height that scouts would like to see in a righthander, but his fastball sits in the mid-90s, touching triple digits on occasion. He also has a nasty slider that he used quite effectively closing for the collegiate national team. Those two pitches will allow him to reach the major leagues as a closer. Where he fits will depend on the development of his change. Meyer has no issues with command, so if his change can represent a solid third pitch he could fit in a rotation. If it lags behind he could always fill the role of the closer. As a college drafted pitcher his window is short, much shorter if the Marlins want to use him out of the bullpen. If used in relief he could be in the major leagues in late 2021, but service time issues will probably delay his arrival until 2022 as the Marlins tune him up to be in the rotation.

49. Brandon Marsh OF (Angels) - Early in his career the second round 2016 pick had trouble generating power. At 6′4″ the build and strength exists for him to carry the ball a long ways. He was also projected as a right fielder. Those attitudes have changed now. For a big man he does have excellent speed that will allow him to patrol centerfield. Presently Mike Trout could be a barrier and in the future Jordyn Adams will be his nemesis for that spot. The arm could easily allow him to fit in right field. The expected power in his bat has yet to manifest itself, with just a .408 slugging percentage the last two years. The 2021 season may change that. Marsh improved on his swing and miss proclivities in 2019 from 2018. In 2018 he struck out 158 times in just 127 games, while in 2019 that improved to just 99 times in 101 games. His speed will make him a threat on the basepaths, with the possibility to eclipse 20 steals per year. With some good numbers Marsh could see the Angels outfield sometime in 2021. Jo Adell will get the first opportunity to play the outfield, but if his struggles continue Marsh is next on the depth chart.

48. Alek Thomas OF (Diamondbacks) - The second round 2018 pick of the Diamondbacks carries three impressive tools. His lefthanded bat scorches line drives through the infield which could make him a consistent .300 hitter. He also has impressive speed that will make him an above average defensive centerfielder and a pest once on the bases. What is lacking in his game is the ability to hit for power, and an arm to fit in right field. The homerun numbers could reach the double digit teens, but with greater strength he may be able to improve on those numbers. A quick release may allow him to stay in centerfield. A move to left would require greater power numbers in his bat. His career minor league slugging average of .455 is not bad. Alek should see the Diamondbacks sometime in 2022, after starting this year in AA.

47. Jeter Downs SS/2B (Red Sox) - The supplemental first round pick of the Reds has already bounced around a couple times. The Reds first traded him to the Dodgers in the Yasiel Puig/Matt Kemp trade and the Dodgers later traded him to the Red Sox in the Mookie Betts/David Price transaction. He was named after his father’s favorite shortstop. His overall tools are not extraordinary, but he is above average in all categories. The arm and range exist for him to stay at shortstop, but those tools work better for him at second base. If he had a monster bat the Red Sox could choose to keep him at short. His bat should carry decent power and swim around the .270 pool. In 2019 he combined for 24 homeruns and he also stole 24 bases. Where he plays in the middle infield could be determined by the Red Sox needs. He will start the 2021 season in AA and is just a phone call away from making his major league debut.

46. Logan Gilbert RHP (Mariners) - The Mariners 2018 first round pick stands an imposing 6′6″. That height becomes more imposing when you have to stand in the batter’s box to face his mid-90s fastball. Fortunately for hitters he has pretty good command of his pitches. The slider is his preferred breaking pitch and the change is an impressive third offering. In his lone season in 2019 he rose to AA, going 10-5 with a 2.15 ERA. The opposition only hit .198 against him and he had a fabulous 33/165 walk to whiff ratio. The Mariners are still rebuilding and service time appears to be an issue with Mariners personnel, so despite his quick ascent in 2019 Gilbert will probably not size up for a Mariners uniform until 2022, unless for some reason the Mariners find themselves in the playoffs in 2021.

45. Spencer Howard RHP (Phillies) - This 2017 second round pick throws hard. His fastball sits in the mid-90s but it consistently bleeds into the high 90s. His changeup may be his second best pitch, which if played off his fastball makes him tough to hit. He also throws two breaking pitches, with the slider being his preferred pitch. Shoulder issues limited his 2019 season to 15 starts. He was pretty dominant during those starts with a 2.03 ERA and a .173 opposition average. He carried a 16/94 walk to whiff ratio in 71 innings. This performance put him on the Phillies radar and he made his major league debut in 2020. It was not awe inspiring performance (5.92 ERA, .300 opposition average). His command deserted him in the major leagues with 10 walks in 24 innings and six taters. This should be a wake up call for what he needs to do to have success in a major league rotation. Expect him to return to the Phillies rotation sometime in the middle of the 2021 season and achieve a little more success.

44. Noelvis Marte SS (Mariners) - The Mariners signed him for $1.55 million in 2018. He has yet to play state side, but he put up some impressive numbers in the Dominican Summer League (.309/.371/.511) with 9 homeruns and 17 stolen bases. He carriers some speed but as he has grown bigger some of that speed has disappeared. This could limit his range at short and force a move to third base. Fortunately, the bat contains enough power that he could be a fit at third base. His arm can be a little erratic, but it is strong. The Mariners will probably start him somewhere in A ball in 2021 with a major league arrival time delayed until 2023. The baseball world will know more in 2021 what he can do once he hits stateside.

43. Nolan Jones 3B (Indians) - The second round 2016 pick has some thunder in his bat. Many considered him the best high school bat in the 2016 draft. He tends to be extra patient at the plate, walking 96 times in .2019. The last three minor league seasons he has had OBAs over .400. That patience at the plate also results in a lot of strikeouts, more than one per game. If he can reach his projected 30 per year homerun power the Indians will accept the abundant swings and misses. While he played shortstop in high school, his lack of foot speed limits his range and has forced a move to third base. His 6′4″ height creates challenges for his defensive prowess, but he should be able to stick at the position. The Indians could move him to AAA in 2021, which means a late season callup could be in his future in 2021.

42. Ronny Mauricio SS (Mets) - While he is listed at shortstop, this 2017 international signing will eventually move to third base. The Mets shelled out $2.1 million to sign him, so they have faint hopes they can keep him at short. His lack of foot speed creates range issues. The move to the hot corner will put pressure on him to develop more power. His current minor league slugging percentage is .374. His power is limited to the gaps, but at 6′3″ the Mets are confident that his strength will grow with maturity. Ronny will probably begin the 2021 season in High A. With Bret Baty projected to be the Mets third baseman of the future it will be interesting to see where Ronny is destined when he is ready to reach the Mets sometime in 2023.

41. Jazz Chisolm SS (Marlins) - The Marlins traded a successful pitcher in Zac Gallen to get “all that Jazz”. The Diamondbacks signed him out of the Bahamas for just $200,000. The hope is that Jazz will make that trade look beneficial in 2021. His first spring training at bat this year was a homerun. He made his major league debut in 2020 but struggled for a .161 average. In his last two minor league seasons he has slugged 46 homeruns. Making contact has been his biggest challenge. In those last two minor league seasons he whiffed 296 times in just 224 games. The defensive tools are there for him to stick at shortstop. If he does not improve his contact ability he could be a 30 homer, .230 average type of player who can steal 20 bases per year. The Marlins will give him another opportunity to play shortstop in 2021, but they are probably grooming him more for 2022 to be a starter.

Myworlds 2021 Top Prospects 60-51

Friday, February 26th, 2021

Myworld continues to whittle down our top prospect list, going through 60-51. This group of ten has a good mix, with lefthanded pitching taking the majority of slots.

60. Geraldo Perdomo SS (Diamondbacks) - Arizona got a bargain with Geraldo, signing him for just $70,000 in 2016. The Dominican has the defensive tools to remain a shortstop. The over the fence power is lacking, but he sprayed the gaps in 2019 with 21 doubles. He makes solid contact with a career walk to whiff ratio of 169/148. That could keep his on base skills (.411 OBA) high enough to fit at the top of the order. The speed is there for him to steal 20 plus bases per year. At 6′2″ the hope is that as he matures he develops additional power. The 2021 season should see him start at AA. If he continues to spray hits to keep that OBA at .400 he could see the Diamondbacks lineup some time late in 2021.

59. Jose Garcia SS (Reds) - The Cuban defector, who signed for a $5 million bonus in 2017 got a rough introduction to major league baseball last year, hitting just .194 with a .206 OBA. The highest level he reached in 2019 was High A where he hit .280, so struggling with major league pitching should not be a surprise. Not everyone is a Juan Soto. Jose has the defensive tools to be an asset at shortstop. At 22 years of age he may need some further refinement in the minor leagues, but the Reds still lack a shortstop. Garcia lacks power, but did contribute 37 doubles in 2019. The speed is decent but it will not result in a lot of stolen bases. Making better contact would enhance his batting average. In the minors his walk to whiff ratio was a woeful 44/195 in 229 games. With the Reds it was 1/26 in 24 games. With a good spring he could win the starting shortstop job in 2021, but it would be better for his development if he percolated a bit more in the minor leagues, with a mid season callup in 2021.

58. Nick Lodolo LHP (Reds) - The 2019 first round pick relies more on his command to retire hitters. The lefthander does not have an overpowering pitch, but at 6′6″ he has an intimidating presence. His fastball hovers around the low 90s and is made better by a quality slider and change up. Over time, as he gains strength one could see that fastball start reading the mid-90s pretty consistently. What helps him is his radar like command. In his only minor league season in 2019 he did not walk a batter in his 18 innings of work, striking out 30. Opposing hitters were able to bat .247 against him, so less time around the plate could be a positive. As a college drafted pitcher Nick should advance quickly in the minor leagues. Don’t be surprised to see a late season 2021 debut if his minor league numbers warrant it.

57. Josh Jung 3B (Rangers) - One of the best hitters in Texas Tech history was rewarded by being a first round pick in the 2019. The Rangers hope that he will be their Kris Bryant. While he played a little shortstop with Tech, the hot corner will be his position with the Rangers. His lack of speed will inhibit his range at short and at 215 pounds he is just not built for the position. The bat contains some power. Once he learns to pull more he could reach 30 plus homeruns a year in the major leagues. In his 2019 minor league debut he did hit .316 with two homeruns. Expect him to start the 2021 season in High A with a Ranger arrival date in 2022.

56. Daniel Lynch LHP (Royals) - Daniel is part of a fearsome four of pitchers selected in the 2018 draft. Lynch was drafted in the first round along with Brady Singer and Jackson Kowar and second round pick Jonathan Bowlan, who are all considered worthy of being in the Royals top ten prospect list. Lynch is the lone lefthander in the group. His fastball has some juice and like Nick Lodolo it is thrown from an angular 6′6″ frame. His slider is an excellent pitch and he also throws a decent curve and change. Despite the height and the difficulty it creates in getting the long levers to all operate in one smooth motion, Lynch has good command of his pitches. As a college drafted pitcher you would like to see him advance through the Royals minor league system at a faster rate. He finished the 2019 season in A ball, while Brady Singer is on the major league roster. The Royals could gamble with him and begin his 2021 season in AA. This would put him a stone’s throw from contributing to the major league club. Realistically, he can expect a callup to the Royals some time in 2022.

55. Nick Madrigal 2B (White Sox) - Madrigal came with enough hype in his college career to motivate the White Sox to draft him in the first round of the 2018 draft. There is a winner’s pedigree in him after leading the Beavers to a College World Series championship. If not for an injury in the 2020 season he may not have qualified for this list. He did hit .340 in his 29 game major league debut. His minor league career average sits at .309. Those numbers may look impressive, but they do not come with the power. His contribution will have to come from spraying the ball into the outfield and making quality defensive plays at second base. If not for an average arm, his defense could be proficient enough to play shortstop. Nick should be the White Sox starting second baseman to begin the 2021 season.

54. Zac Veen OF (Rockies) - The Rockies 2020 first round pick has the 6′4″ frame typical of rightfielders. The arm is a good fit for the position. He also carries some speed to be able to patrol centerfield, though not the burner speed a lot of teams prefer for the position. His path to the major leagues will be destined by the power in his lefthanded bat. Rockie offensive numbers are usually inflated because of the high altitude, but Zac does not need that to carry balls over the fence. Because there was no 2020 season Zac should begin the season in Low A. The second high school player taken in the 2020 draft is still a couple years away from impacting the Rockies lineup, but the 2023 season should see his major league debut.

53. Francisco Alvarez C (Mets) - Venezuela is noted for developing pretty good catchers. The Mets paid a $2.7 million bonus to sign him in 2018. Francisco has some impressive tools, especially on the offensive side. His bat should contribute power as well as a high average. In 2019 he was able to hit .312 with seven homeruns and a .510 slugging percentage. There appears to be enough patience not to swing at anything close to the plate, his 26 walks in just 42 games producing a .407 OBA. On defense his arm is strong enough to slow a running game. He also moves well behind the plate, shifting his 220 pounds with ease. The other intricacies to the game such as pitch calling will come with more experience. The 19 year old will start the 2021 season in A ball with a Met appearance sometime in the 2023 season.

52. Edward Cabrera RHP (Marlins) - The Marlins signed the Dominican way back in 2015. He cost them a measly $100,000 signing bonus. Edward is one of many flame throws elevating up the Marlins system. The 6′5″ righthander hits the plate with a fastball travelling in the mid-90s. His slider is also a pretty effective pitch. Enhancing his change and improving his command will be game changers, allowing him to fit at the top of a rotation. His 2019 season was a break out season with his 2.23 ERA almost two runs better than his three previous minor league seasons. Hitters also struggled to hit just .190 against him, an improvement of 80 points or more from his three previous seasons. The 2021 season will determine whether this vast improvement was a fluke, or part of his increased understanding of becoming a pitcher. Unfortunately, it has not gotten off to a good start, with an arm injury that will sideline him for the early spring. The Marlins were considering him for the rotation towards the end of the 2020 season but arm and back issues kept him away from making his major league debut. Let us hope these injuries are not part of a pattern. Otherwise he should make his major league debut sometime in the 2021 season.

51. Matthew Liberatore LHP (Cardinals) - The Cardinals were so enamored with Liberatore that they traded the homer machine Randy Arozarena to acquire him. Of course, that was before Arozarena hit all those playoff homeruns. The Rays drafted Liberatore in the first round of the 2018 draft. In the long run he could end up being the better player than Arozarena. The lefthander stands 6′5″, can throw in the low 90s and could see some increase in velo as he grows into his frame. His curveball is his quality second pitch and the slider and change also exist in his repertoire. He has no problems finding the plate. The last level Matthew pitched was in Low A. He could see High A in 2021 and hopes to show Cardinal fans, sometime in 2023 that the Cardinals got the better deal in acquiring him.