Prospecting

Just in case baseball junkies weren’t getting their fill of news and analysis with the Vernon Wells trade, or the Manny Ramirez signing, or even a candid Brian Cashman hosting breakfasts and spilling beans, online baseball prospecting has become almost as rampant on the internet as another topic that gentlemen also often “research” at home alone.

Earlier today, ESPN’s Keith Law unveiled his annual organizational rankings for 2011.  Yesterday, MLB.com revealed its top fifty prospects.  Meanwhile, Baseball America has completed its list of top ten prospects for each organization, and Baseball Prospectus only has ten more teams to go until its lists of top eleven (and then some) prospects for each system is complete.

Items Of Note:

  • The Kansas City Royals rank first in Law’s rankings, are the only team with six players in MLB’s top fifty prospects, and are the only organization to receive five five star rankings from Baseball Prospectus.
  • The Toronto Blue Jays rank fourth in Law’s rankings, and have three players ranked in MLB top fifty prospects including Kyle Drabek (12), Brett Lawrie (28) and J.P. Arencibia (48).
  • MLB.com ranks Mike Trout as the number one prospect in baseball.  According to Baseball Prospectus, Trout’s “combination of tools and baseball aptitude is nearly unheard of for a teenager. He has a big league-ready approach to go with outstanding hands and bat speed. He makes consistent, hard contact to all fields, and talent evaluators are universal in seeing average-to-plus power come out of his broad, athletic frame. He’s an pure 80 runner who eats up ground in center field, and he adds fantastic makeup to the overall package.”
  • Law ranks the Tampa Bay Rays as having the second best farm system in baseball, and that was “even before they dealt Matt Garza, they’re now No. 2 with a bullet and not far behind Kansas City for No. 1.”
  • Other notable names in MLB’s top fifty prospect list include 2. Jeremy Hellickson (Rays), 3. Bryce Haprer (Nationals), 4. Domonic Brown (Phillies), 6. Aroldis Chapman (Reds), 9. Jesus Montero (Yankees).

Check back at ESPN tomorrow for Keith Law’s individual prospect rankings.