The 2016 Los Angeles Dodgers Top 10 Prospects

Announcement: After peaking as the #3 book among all baseball books on Amazon last year, my new book, The 2016 Prospect Digest Handbook, is on sale! Check it out here!

And for those wondering what CALs are, here’s an article on the Comparison And Likeness program I designed.

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1. Julio Urias, LHP                                                                 
Born: 08/12/96 Age: 19 Bats: L Top CALs: Tyler Skaggs, Julio Teheran,

Noah Syndergaard, Lucas Giolito, Arodys Vizcaino

Height: 6-2 Weight: 205 Throws: L
 

YEAR Age Level IP W L ERA FIP K/9 BB/9 K% BB% HR/9 LOB%
2013 16 A 54.3 2 0 2.48 3.01 11.10 2.65 31.8% 7.6% 0.83 85.2%
2014 17 A+ 87.7 2 2 2.36 3.36 11.19 3.80 30.6% 10.4% 0.41 80.3%
2015 18 R 3.0 0 0 0.00 1.48 15.00 3.00 45.5% 9.1% 0.00 100.0%
2015 18 A+ 4.7 0 0 7.71 4.85 7.71 0.00 19.1% 0.0% 1.93 53.6%
2015 18 AA 68.3 3 4 2.77 2.59 9.75 1.98 27.6% 5.6% 0.53 71.0%
2015 18 AAA 4.3 0 1 18.69 5.45 10.38 12.46 16.7% 20.0% 0.00 47.1%

Background: Question: Is Julio Urias the greatest pitching prospect in baseball since the institution of the draft in 1965? Move beyond the initial absurdity of it for a moment and just think about it for a few minutes. Is Julio Urias, the teenage wunderkind twirling gems in the Dodgers’ system, the greatest pitching prospect in baseball since the institution of the draft in 1965? It was worth repeating, I think. For this purpose, as sort of a quick and easy study, let’s take a brief snapshot of top pitching prospects since 1965 and their age-18 seasons:

Player Age Level(s) IP K BB K/9 BB/9 K/BB
Julio Urias 18 A+/AA/AAA 80.1 88 22 9.9 2.5 4.0
Felix Hernandez 18 A+/AA 149.1 172 47 10.4 2.8 3.7
Vida Blue 18 A 152.0 231 80 13.7 4.7 2.9
Jose Rijo 18 A/AA 200.2 184 65 8.3 2.9 2.9
Dwight Gooden 18 A 191.0 300 112 14.1 5.3 2.7

 

A few things to note here: Obviously, limiting the study to age-18 seasons eliminates any collegiate players (Stephen Strasburg, Mark Prior, etc…) and because the sample size is usually under 30 innings, a lot of prep arms too. But there also serves a point in highlighting just how rare a prospect like Urias comes along.

OK, now onto the study. First, how absolutely ridiculous was it to have teenage arms, barely beyond high school, hurl upwards of 200 innings? Secondly, Urias’ numbers – while admittedly in a much small sample, thanks to increased injury awareness – compare decently with each of the four listed prospects. He may not have the pure power that Blue or Gooden had (judging by K-rate), but he’s exhibited superior control/command as evidenced by his walk rate and strikeout-to-walk ratio. Does that make the young Dodgers lefty the greatest? No, not by itself. But it does certainly show he at least belongs in the conversation.

Los Angeles wisely capped the Mexican-born hurler’s innings last year, allowing Urias to toss a smidgeon over 80 frames – most of which were spent in the Texas League, an environment where the average hitter was six years his senior. Urias would finish his Class AA campaign with a 2.59 FIP while fanning 27.6% of the batters he faced.

Projection: The best pitching prospect in baseball. Bar none. Urias has an uncanny ability to control the zone like few other teenage pitchers in the history of the game. He mixes an above-average ability to miss bats while limiting free passes. And like I noted in last year’s book, Urias is next in line to the throne of southpaw Dodger greats, following in the footsteps of Sandy Koufax, Fernando Valenzuela, and Clayton Kershaw.

Ceiling: 6.5-win player

Risk: Moderate

MLB ETA: 2016

 

 

2. Corey Seager, SS                                                           
Born: 04/27/94 Age: 22 Bats: L Top CALs: Reid Brignac, Dilson Herrera,

Xander Bogaerts, Nick Franklin, Arismendy Alcantara

Height: 6-4 Weight: 215 Throws: R
 

Season Age LVL PA 2B 3B HR AVG OBP SLG ISO BB% K% wRC+
2013 19 A 312 18 3 12 0.309 0.389 0.529 0.221 10.9% 18.6% 155
2013 19 A+ 114 2 1 4 0.160 0.246 0.320 0.160 10.5% 27.2% 46
2014 20 A+ 365 34 2 18 0.352 0.411 0.633 0.281 8.2% 20.8% 167
2014 20 AA 161 16 3 2 0.345 0.381 0.534 0.189 6.2% 24.2% 154
2015 21 AA 86 7 1 5 0.375 0.407 0.675 0.300 5.8% 12.8% 196
2015 21 AAA 464 30 2 13 0.278 0.332 0.451 0.173 6.9% 14.0% 106
2015 21 MLB 113 8 1 4 0.337 0.425 0.561 0.224 12.4% 16.8% 175

Background: The 2012 first round has the potential to go down in history as baseball’s version of the 1983 NFL draft, which was famous for having seven quarterbacks taken in the first round, including Hall of Famers John Elway, Jim Kelly, and Dan Marino as well as solid starter Ken O’Brien. The 2012 MLB draft churned out three perennial All-Star caliber shortstops within the first 18 picks: Carlos Correa (1st overall), Addison Russell (11th overall), and Corey Seager (18th overall), each of whom, coincidentally enough, all made their big league debuts last season. Seager began the year by torching the Texas League arms to the tune of .375/.407/.675 with 13 extra-base hits in 20 games. The front office promoted the lefty-swinging infielder up to the PCL on the first of May and the results were solid: he batted .278/.332/.451 with a not-quite-impressive 106 wRC+. He would eventually get the call up to LA in early September, where his hot hitting (.337/.425/.561) allowed him to wrestle the starter’s role from future Hall of Famer Jimmy Rollins.

Projection: In last year’s book I wrote:

“Seager is the complete offensive package – he hits for average and power, has a strong approach at the plate which leads to solid walk and contact rates, runs well, shows no discernible platoon split. Defensively speaking, well, did I mention how promising the bat is? He has a chance to be a star, whether it’s at shortstop or third base.”

Ditto; though his defense did take a bit of a step forward last season. He’s going to be a superior player than his older brother Kyle, who garnered a nine-figure deal from the Mariners. On the flip, though, CAL isn’t overly convinced, linking him to just one above-average regular, Xander Bogaerts.

Ceiling: 4.0-win player

Risk: Low to Moderate

MLB ETA: Debuted in 2015

 

3. Jose De Leon, RHP                                                          
Born: 08/07/92 Age: 23 Bats: R Top CALs: Jonathan Ortiz, Addison Reed,

Clay Buchholz, Casey Mulligan, Will Harris

Height: 6-2 Weight: 185 Throws: R
 

YEAR Age Level IP W L ERA FIP K/9 BB/9 K% BB% HR/9 LOB%
2013 20 R 19.3 1 2 12.10 6.83 8.38 1.40 17.8% 3.0% 2.33 36.1%
2013 20 R 33.7 2 3 4.01 4.27 9.36 4.81 23.5% 12.1% 0.27 68.4%
2014 21 R 54.3 5 0 2.65 2.95 12.75 3.15 33.8% 8.3% 0.33 65.4%
2014 21 A 22.7 2 0 1.19 0.62 16.68 0.79 48.8% 2.3% 0.40 82.2%
2015 22 A+ 37.7 4 1 1.67 2.00 13.86 1.91 39.2% 5.4% 0.24 79.2%
2015 22 AA 76.7 2 6 3.64 3.64 12.33 3.40 33.1% 9.2% 1.29 74.4%

Background: As if unearthing Julio Urias on the sandlots of Mexico weren’t fortunate enough, the Dodgers polished this former 24th round draft pick into a legitimate prospect gem – within two years. The 724th player taken in the 2013 draft, De Leon, who was grabbed out of Southern University and A&M College, had a rather inauspicious debut as a 20-year-old splitting his time between the Pioneer and Appalachian Leagues, posting a nearly 7.00 ERA courtesy of some poor luck (.341 BABIP, 2.33 HR/9). But the 6-foot-2 right-hander did finish the year with a stellar 53-to-21 strikeout-to-walk rate. De Leon found himself back in the Pioneer League to begin the following season, 2014, but dispatched the younger competition with relative ease: he fanned 77 and walked 19 in 54.1 innings. It was enough to convince the organization that he was finally ready for full season ball. He would make four successful starts in the Midwest League to cap off his year.

Those four starts, believe it or not, were enough to earn a shot at High Class A coming straight out of Spring Training in 2015. And De Leon didn’t look back. He was as dominant as any pitcher in baseball for seven starts with Rancho Cucamonga (37.2 IP, 58 K, and 8 BB) and continued to buzz-saw the Texas League competition (76.2 IP, 105 K, 29 BB).

Projection: I listed the Puerto Rican-born hurler in the Bird Doggin’ Section last season, writing: “I’ll start believing once he spends more than 22.2 innings above the rookie leagues.” Well, consider me converted. De Leon has transformed from a late-round gamble into a legitimate front-of-the-rotation caliber arm, who, laughably, would be the system’s top hurler if it weren’t for Urias. Strikeouts come in gobs. The walks barely materialize.

Ceiling: 4.0-win player

Risk: Moderate

MLB ETA: 2016

 

4. Frankie Montas, RHP                                                     
Born: 03/21/93 Age: 23 Bats: R Top CALs: Randall Delgado, Luke Jackson,

Michael Feliz, Jose Ortegano, Eduardo Rodriguez

Height: 6-2 Weight: 185 Throws: R
 

YEAR Age Level IP W L ERA FIP K/9 BB/9 K% BB% HR/9 LOB%
2013 20 A 111.0 5 11 5.43 3.91 10.30 4.05 25.7% 10.1% 0.89 60.7%
2014 21 A+ 62.0 4 0 1.60 2.90 8.13 2.03 23.1% 5.8% 0.29 77.3%
2014 21 AA 5.0 0 0 0.00 3.39 1.80 1.80 5.9% 5.9% 0.00 50.0%
2015 22 AA 112.0 5 5 2.97 3.04 8.68 3.86 23.2% 10.3% 0.24 66.5%

Background: When it comes to the Dodgers’ portion of the Todd Frazier deal involving the White Sox and Reds, it’s a clear win for the analytically thinking front office. Los Angeles shipped out a couple fringy big league regulars in Jose Peraza and Scott Schebler and a career minor leaguer, Brandon Dixon, for Montas, easily the best prospect in the entire seven-player deal, Micah Johnson, and Trayce Thompson. For his part, Montas, a 6-foot-2, 195-pound right-hander out of the Dominican Republic, took his plus-fastball to Class AA last season, easily the minors’ toughest challenge, and he passed with flying colors. In a career high 112.0 innings with the Birmingham Barons Montas tallied 108 punch outs, 48 walks, a 2.97 ERA, and a sparkling 3.04 FIP. For his career, he has fanned 24.0% and walked 10.0% of the total hitters he’s faced en route to totaling a 3.86 ERA.

Projection: Another of the prospects I’ve hitched my analytical wagon to for the past couple of years, I ranked Montas as Chicago’s #2 and #5 prospects the last two seasons. Here’s what I wrote in my first book in 2014:

As with any young arm there’s going to be a lot of injury risk associated with Montas, but the peripherals are too good to ignore. His control was far better during his 85+ innings with Boston (3.38 BB/9) than the 25+ innings with Chicago (6.31 BB/9). There’s quite a bit of upside here.”

And I followed that up with this in last year’s book:

“The knee injuries added some level of complexity to the analysis, but the gifted right-hander has now fanned over 24% of the batters he’s faced in his young career. He’s not on the level of some of the game’s top pitching prospect, but Montas still looks like a good bet to develop into a #3-type arm.”

A couple interesting tidbits:

  • During his 15.0-inning stint with Chicago last season Montas’ fastball averaged a shade over 96 mph. He complemented with a mid-80s slider, and a ridiculously hard, upper-80s changeup.
  • Last season his strikeout percentage, 23.2%, ranked fourth among all qualified arms in the Southern League.
  • His strikeout-to-walk percentage, 12.9%, finished as the fifth best mark in the league.
  • Among all qualified arms in any Class AA level, his strikeout percentage was the sixth best; his strikeout-to-walk percentage ranked 15th.

Needless to say, he’s an incredibly promising arm – and the Dodgers picked him up for what amounts to a song-and-dance. At the very worst, he’s a late-inning relief arm. Here’s hoping the Dodgers don’t decide to relegate him to that role too soon.

Ceiling: 3.0-win player

Risk: Moderate

MLB ETA: Debuted in 2015

 

5. Alex Verdugo, CF                                                          
Born: 05/15/96 Age: 20 Bats: L Top CALs: Gerardo Parra, Jose Osuna,

Gorkys Hernandez, Danry Vasquez, Teodoro Martinez

Height: 6-0 Weight: 205 Throws: L
 

Season Age LVL PA 2B 3B HR AVG OBP SLG ISO BB% K% wRC+
2014 18 R 196 14 3 3 0.347 0.423 0.518 0.171 10.2% 7.1% 165
2015 19 A 444 23 2 5 0.295 0.325 0.394 0.100 3.8% 11.9% 108
2015 19 A+ 96 9 2 4 0.385 0.406 0.659 0.275 4.2% 12.5% 183

Background: A second round pick two years ago, Verdugo had one of – if not the – top debuts of the 2014 draft class. Spending all but five of his 54 games in the Arizona Summer League, the young center fielder slugged .353/.421/.511 with 15 doubles, a trio of triples, and three homeruns while going a perfect 11-for-11 in stolen bases. His overall production topped the league average mark by more than 60%. So, needless to say, expectations were riding quite high entering his sophomore campaign. And after a bit of a lengthy adaption period, Verdugo – once again – caught fire. He opened the season hitting .213/.254/.274 across his first 40 games, but slugged .346/.370/.471 over his final 61 contests in the Midwest League. And he didn’t slow down after getting a promotion to Rancho Cucamonga (.385/.406/.659).

Projection: For those counting at home, after the rough start Verdugo looked like a baby-faced Ted Williams at the plate, hitting .356/.380/.520 over his final 84 games. The power grades out merely average now, but has the potential to develop into 15-HR territory at the game’s top level. Above-average hit tool, but his patience at the plate took a noticeable downturn, dropping nearly six percentage points from his first season. Gerardo Parra, his top CAL, seems like a reasonable comparison, but there’s room to grow here.

Ceiling: 3.0-win player

Risk: Moderate

MLB ETA: 2017

 

6. Yadier Alvarez, RHP                                                  
Born: 11/14/93 Age: 21 Bats: B Top CALs: N/A

 

Height: 5-11 Weight: 175 Throws: R

Background: The latest Cuban import to ink a big dollar deal. Alvarez, a 6-foot-2, 170-pound fire-balling right-hander, signed a contract with a reported bonus just north of $16 million – the second highest bonus ever given out to an international amateur free agent. The Dodgers eventually outbid the Phillies and Diamondbacks for the services of the promising young hurler.

Projection: Absolutely nothing to go off in terms of statistical data. But his signing created quite the buzz. We’ll know more once he moves stateside.

Ceiling: Too Soon to Tell

Risk: N/A

MLB ETA: N/A

 

7. Grant Holmes, RHP                                                     
Born: 03/22/96 Age: 21 Bats: L Top CALs: Michael Main, Lucas Giolito,

Angel Reyes, Casey Mulligan, Will Harris

Height: 6-1 Weight: 215 Throws: R
 

YEAR Age Level IP W L ERA FIP K/9 BB/9 K% BB% HR/9 LOB%
2014 18 R 18.3 1 1 4.91 3.16 12.27 2.95 32.1% 7.7% 0.49 65.0%
2014 18 R 30.0 1 2 3.00 3.60 9.90 2.10 28.0% 5.9% 0.60 68.7%
2015 19 A 103.3 6 4 3.14 3.48 10.19 4.70 26.6% 12.3% 0.52 71.6%

Background: Received a pretty hefty over-slot bonus as the 22nd overall pick two years ago, Holmes, who inked a deal with the Dodgers for over $2.2 million, started paying dividends for the franchise almost immediately. The 6-foot-1 fire-balling right-hander breezed through both levels of rookie ball during his debut, totaling an impressive 58-to-13 strikeout-to-walk ratio in just over 48 innings of work. The front office pushed Holmes into the Midwest League last season where he…dominated. Pitching no more than six innings in any of his 24 starts, Holmes fanned at least five batters in 12 contests and allowed 1 or fewer runs in 13 times. He finished the year with 103.1 innings, 117 strikeouts, 54 walks, and a solid 3.48 FIP. Among all Low Class A starters with at least 100 innings last season Holmes’ strikeout percentage, 26.6%, ranks second.

Projection: Control still has a ways to go – he walked over 12% of the batters he faced last season – but it should at least develop into a solid-average skill. For instance, he walked nine of his total 54 batters in two games – or just under 17% of his total. The strikeout rate is plenty promising and he’s likely going to find his way into at least #3-type role in a big league starting rotation – barring injury, of course.

Ceiling: 3.0- to 3.5-win player

Risk: Moderate to High

MLB ETA: 2018

 

8. Cody Bellinger, 1B                                                      
Born: 07/13/95 Age: 20 Bats: L Top CALs: Kyle Blanks, Dylan Cozens,

Joe Benson, Jason Smit, Juan Ortiz

Height: 6-4 Weight: 180 Throws: L
 

Season Age LVL PA 2B 3B HR AVG OBP SLG ISO BB% K% wRC+
2013 17 R 195 9 6 1 0.210 0.340 0.358 0.148 15.9% 23.6% 102
2014 18 R 212 13 6 3 0.328 0.368 0.503 0.174 6.6% 16.5% 120
2015 19 A+ 544 33 4 30 0.264 0.336 0.538 0.274 9.6% 27.6% 130

Background: Bellinger looked awfully raw – and overmatched – during his debut in the Arizona Summer League three years ago, cobbling together a paltry triple slash line (.210/.340/.358). But the incoming fourth round pick did have a fairly strong foundation to build upon: a solid eye at the plate (that was undoubtedly aided by the level of pitching), decent power, and he didn’t swing-and-miss too often. Well, the disappointing debut eventually led to only a slight promotion: spending another year developing at the rookie level, this time the Pioneer League. Bellinger’s numbers ticked up noticeably during his sophomore campaign: he slugged .328/.368/.503 with 13 doubles, six triples, and three homeruns. The production was good enough to earn him a trip to full season ball – except I would’ve never guessed that he would bypass the Midwest League and head straight to the California League. And then dominate. As a 19-year-old.

The left-handed thumper mashed at an impressive clip – .264/.336/.538 – while finishing tied for second in the league with 30 dingers. His overall production, per Weighted Runs Created Plus, topped the league average mark by 30%. And just for comparison’s sake here’s a brief list of 19-year-old qualified prospects to post a 130 wRC+ in the Cal League since 2006: Addison Russell and Domingo Santana. That’s it, just two other players.

Projection: During my initial pre-pre-rank I fully expected to opine about how the 6-foot-4 first baseman was likely overhyped. But the more research I did, the more in-depth I delved into the numbers I came to a vastly different conclusion. Take for example the list of 19-year-olds at any High Class A league that have posted a walk rate above 9% and an ISO north of .200 since 2006: Domingo Santana, Xander Bogaerts, Addison Russell, and Bellinger, of course.

Granted, the California League tends to inflate offensive numbers, but Bellinger didn’t just top a .200 ISO, he surpassed it by a whopping 74 points. The power is going to play in any league, at any level. The patience at the plate is more than serviceable. It will likely come down to Bellinger’s ability to make consistent enough contact. But any 19-year-old that can slug 30 bombs in High Class A is a legitimate prospect. He could be a middle-of-the-lineup force, but there’s risk here.

Ceiling: 3.0-win player

Risk: Moderate to High

MLB ETA: 2017

 

9. Austin Barnes, 2B/C                                                     
Born: 12/28/89 Age: 26 Bats: R Top CALs: Charlie Cutler, John Jaso,

Josmil Pinto, Robinosn Chirinos, Kris Watts

Height: 5-10 Weight: 185 Throws: R
 

Season Age LVL PA 2B 3B HR AVG OBP SLG ISO BB% K% wRC+
2013 23 A+ 417 15 1 4 0.260 0.367 0.343 0.083 12.5% 14.1% 110
2014 24 A+ 200 11 2 1 0.317 0.385 0.417 0.100 9.5% 12.5% 132
2014 24 AA 348 20 2 12 0.296 0.406 0.507 0.211 14.4% 10.3% 157
2015 25 AAA 335 17 2 9 0.315 0.389 0.479 0.164 10.4% 10.7% 133
2015 25 MLB 37 2 0 0 0.207 0.361 0.276 0.069 16.2% 16.2% 93

Background: Sort of a poor man’s Craig Biggio, Barnes continued his best impression of the Hall of Famer in 2015 – though not to the extent he showcased two years ago. Last season marked the fifth consecutive time that the former ninth round pick appeared in at least one game behind the plate and another game at the keystone. Keeping with the theme of consistency, 2015 also marked the third time out of his last four seasons that he posted an OPS of at least .869. Barnes, a career .300/.390/.439 minor league hitter, appeared in 80 games with Oklahoma City last season, slugging .315/.389/.479 with 17 doubles, two triples, nine homeruns, and 12 stolen bases (in just 14 attempts). He also bounced up to LA a couple times as well, where his overall numbers – .207/.361/.276 – look far less impressive, but he still managed to finish his MLB debut with a solid 93 wRC+ courtesy of a walk rate just north of 16%.

Projection: An incredibly savvy pickup as part of the Dee Gordon deal with the Marlins last offseason. In last year’s book I wrote:

“A potential interesting bench option for the Dodgers. Barnes could act as both a backup infielder and catcher for the club, which in turn would allow them to carry an additional late-inning [bullpen] option. He’s a career .298/.390/.431 hitter, htough he’s never appeared in a game above Class AA. Solid power with a tremendous nose for first base.”

Let’s just compare Barnes’ MiLB production to Yan Gomes, whom I always find incredibly intriguing because he was so overlooked:

Player PA AVG OBP SLG ISO BB% K%
Austin Barnes 2,190 0.300 0.390 0.439 0.139 11.51% 11.37%
Yan Gomes 1,390 0.288 0.347 0.483 0.195 7.55% 21.85%

Gomes, likely the greatest pickup in Cleveland GM Chris Antonetti’s career, has the noticeable edge in power. But in every other offensive category the nod goes to Barnes. On the defensive side, both backstops tossed out 30% of potential thieves during their respective MiLB runs. CAL is also a rather large fan of Barnes as well, linking him to John Jaso (career 120 wRC+), Josmil Pinto (120 wRC+), and Robinson Chirinos (92 wRC+). Is Barnes the top catcher in the minors? Absolutely, unequivocally no. But can he hold down a starting position on a championship caliber squad. If I were a small market GM, I’d bet on it. Too bad he’s in LA.

Ceiling: 1.5- to 2.0-win player

Risk: Low to Moderate

MLB ETA: Debuted in 2015

 

10. Walker Buehler, RHP                                              
Born: 11/14/93 Age: 21 Bats: B Top CALs: N/A

 

Height: 5-11 Weight: 175 Throws: R

Background: The club’s first pick last June, 24th overall, provided quite the surprise following his selection from Pitcher U. (aka Vanderbilt): the Commodores’ ace hurler immediately underwent the knife upon signing his $1.78 million deal. According to Dodgers GM Farhan Zaidi via the Los Angeles Times, Buehler exhibited some elbow discomfort prior to the draft, but the team felt comfortable spending their first pick on the injured right-hander. And, according to Zaidi, “[A] week before we drafted him, he pitched in the College World Series and hit 97 miles per hour.” Despite dealing with the discomfort Buehler turned arguably his finest collegiate season: he tossed 88.1 IP, fanned 92, walked 30, and posted a 2.95 ERA as he helped propel the Commodores to the final round.

Projection: Prior to the draft I wrote:

“Physically speaking, he’s a bit thin and could stand to add to his 6-foot-2 frame. Production-wise, though, Buehler’s been incredibly consistent throughout his career, always showing a strong ability to limit free passes – he’s averaged just 2.72 walk per nine innings over his last two seasons – with an equally impressive talent to miss bats in one of college baseball’s better conferences.”

I continued:

And his early season elbow issues seem to be firmly in the past: he fanned a career best 13 hitters against Ole’ Miss in early April and followed that up with nine more punch outs against South Carolina. There are always going to be questions about his durability, and those notwithstanding, Buehler looks like a potential fast-moving, back-of-the-rotation caliber arm.”

Well, apparently the elbow issues weren’t firmly in the past. One does wonder how well he would have performed with a healthy wing. I previously slapped a Mid- to Late-First Round tag on him, as well as a 2.0-win ceiling. I’ll stick with that until proven otherwise – injury or not.

Ceiling: 2.0-win player

Risk: Moderate to High

MLB ETA: 2018

 

 

Author’s Note: All statistics courtesy of FanGraphs.com.



About

After serving as a video scout/analyst for Baseball Info Solutions, Joe Werner began writing at his original site, ReleasePoints.com. He’s since transitioned into his current niche, prospect analysis, at ProspectDigest.com. He has been fortunate — and incredibly blessed — to have some of his work published and mentioned by several major media outlets, including: ESPN, Cleveland.com and the Baseball Research Journal. He can be reached at: JosephMWerner@yahoo.com.