Top Ten at Ten - Angels

Myworld will take a look at the top ten prospects for each team ten years ago to see how they need.  These ratings were done by Baseball America.  The first look is at the Anaheim Angels, now named the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

1. Francisco Rodriguez (RHP) - They called him K-Rod and he earned the number one ranking by shining in the playoffs and World Series as the Angels closer.  He became the youngest pitcher in 32 years to pitch in the World Series.  Back in those days he threw his fastball in the mid 90s.  He has not seen those readings in awhile.

2. Casey Kotchman (1B) - Never lived up to his hype.  Casey made it to the majors as an excellent defensive first baseman and had some good years hitting for average, but lacked the pop some teams like to see from their first sacker.

3. Bobby Jenks (RHP) - The Angels didn’t need him because they had K-Rod and designated him for assignment.  The White Sox picked him up and Bobby became their closer, at the time hitting three digits with his fastball.  He led the White Sox to their World Series victory in 2005 after they picked him up on waivers.  His bulk got the best of him, whittling the velocity on his fastball, but he had some good years as the closer for the White Sox.

4. Jeff Mathis (C) - Like Casey, a good defensive player who could not do enough with his bat.  Still useful in the major leagues as a back up catcher.

5. Johan Santana (RHP) - Later changed his name to Ervin to not confuse him with the other Johan who won a Cy Young.  Ervin failed to win a Cy Young but he had some good years with the Angels until the gopher ball started driving up his ERA and increasing his loss totals.  The Angels finally gave him to the Royals last year to save on salary.

6. Dallas McPherson (3B) - Didn’t have much of a major league career and is still stumbling in the minor leagues and Independent ball.  Back problems sapped him of his power.

7. Joe Saunders (LHP) - Turned into a decent pitcher for a number of different teams.  Currently pitching for the Mariners and struggling.  Joe was a solid starter for the Orioles last year in their playoff run.

8. Rich Fischer (RHP) - Didn’t meet the hype.

9. Joe Torres (LHP) - He may have gotten a cup of coffee with a couple teams, but no big impact on the mound.

10. Chris Bootcheck (RHP) - Another pitcher who got lost in the hype.

Those not in the top ten who did pretty good.

21. Eric Aybar (SS) - Eric is currently the Angels starting shortstop.  His glove is good but a so-so bat will keep him from being mentioned as one of the greats at the position.

23. Alberto Callaspo (2B) - Made a pretty good career as a utility player for the Angels.  Settled in at third when Brandon Woods could not win the position.

28. Chone Figgins (2B) - The Mariners would like to forget him.  After a couple good years with the Angels as a leadoff hitter he was a bust when the Mariners signed him for a lot of money as a free agent to hit under .200.

The 2003 draft got them Brandon Wood, who turned out to be a bust as their first round pick and Sean Rodriguez in the third round, who they traded to the Rays for Scott Kazmir.  Those are the only major leaguers they drafted that year who they signed.

They did draft Brandon Morrow (40) and Jason Donald (20), two current major leaguers, but neither player signed.

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