Farm Futures: NL West: 146 Prospects You Need To Know

Farm Futures: NL West: 146 Prospects You Need To Know

This article is part of our Farm Futures series.

For the fourth year in a row, I will be going division by division, providing analysis on every fantasy-relevant prospect in baseball while also ranking those prospects in their respective systems. This means there will be 30-plus prospects ranked in certain systems and less than 15 prospects ranked in others. There is no point in listing an irrelevant prospect just to reach an arbitrary total of 10, 20 or 30. Similarly, it is unfortunate to not include information on highly relevant prospects just because that prospect was not one of his team's 10 or 20 best.

The third installment takes us to the 146 prospects you need to know in the National League West.

I wrote the outlooks for most of the guys in the top 250 or so of the top 400 prospect rankings, so if you want more in-depth analysis on someone, check out their player profile. The order of the players on the back half of the top 400 will be evolving throughout this process, so the 400 may not be up to date with the team rankings in this article. Listed ages are as of 4/1/20. Feel free to ask me any prospect-related questions in the comments section or on Twitter.

DIAMONDBACKS

1. Kristian Robinson, OF, 19, Low-A

It's so fun to dream on Robinson's upside. He could hit 40-plus home runs. He could steal 25 bases. He could get on base at a .400 clip. It was telling that he opened 2019 in

For the fourth year in a row, I will be going division by division, providing analysis on every fantasy-relevant prospect in baseball while also ranking those prospects in their respective systems. This means there will be 30-plus prospects ranked in certain systems and less than 15 prospects ranked in others. There is no point in listing an irrelevant prospect just to reach an arbitrary total of 10, 20 or 30. Similarly, it is unfortunate to not include information on highly relevant prospects just because that prospect was not one of his team's 10 or 20 best.

The third installment takes us to the 146 prospects you need to know in the National League West.

I wrote the outlooks for most of the guys in the top 250 or so of the top 400 prospect rankings, so if you want more in-depth analysis on someone, check out their player profile. The order of the players on the back half of the top 400 will be evolving throughout this process, so the 400 may not be up to date with the team rankings in this article. Listed ages are as of 4/1/20. Feel free to ask me any prospect-related questions in the comments section or on Twitter.

DIAMONDBACKS

1. Kristian Robinson, OF, 19, Low-A

It's so fun to dream on Robinson's upside. He could hit 40-plus home runs. He could steal 25 bases. He could get on base at a .400 clip. It was telling that he opened 2019 in short-season ball and not at Low-A. It made sense, but it also tells us that the Diamondbacks will not rush his development. Cutting his GB% and upping his BB% will be key in his first full season.

2. Corbin Carroll, OF, 19, Low-A

I really don't think we can be too aggressive on Carroll. He could hit .300 with a .400 OBP while stealing 30-plus bases. The thing is, I think he's going to surprise everyone by being a 20-plus home run guy. He hasn't faced full-season pitching yet, but for fantasy purposes, the sky's the limit.

3. Alek Thomas, OF, 19, High-A

I was too low on Thomas coming into the year, but I still question whether his bat will do damage against upper-level pitching. Maybe the reasonable expectation should be Adam Eaton with a little more speed, with a chance for more if he maxes out in the power department.

4. Geraldo Perdomo, SS, 20, Double-A

Perdomo reminds me a lot of Didi Gregorius, just from a size, power projection and defense standpoint. However, he should end up with a much better hit tool thanks to a preternatural approach. He has a high floor and a deceptively high ceiling since he does the important stuff well.

5. Daulton Varsho, C/OF, 23, Triple-A

My biggest concern with Varsho is that he won't have catcher eligibility for a good chunk of his career due to a below-average arm. I'm not predicting that, but it's definitely possible. Realistically, he could hit .280 with 15-20 HR and 15 SB.

6. Blake Walston, LHP, 18, Low-A

I love Walston's combination of projectability, present stuff, athleticism and handedness. He could end up with a plus-plus fastball, plus-plus curveball and above-average changeup if he develops as hoped, and even if he falls a little short of that, he could still be a No. 3 starter.

7. Seth Beer, 1B/DH, 23, Double-A

Beer will likely develop into a good big-league hitter against RHP, but his defensive shortcomings will make it difficult for him to play regularly on a National League team if he is not one of the best offensive first basemen in the league. It could be a very frustrating next couple of years as we await the DH being added to the NL.

8. Luis Frias, RHP, 21, Low-A

I've got a pretty strong hunch that Frias will end up as a high-leverage reliever, just based on his command and the fact he will be added to the 40-man roster next offseason. There's a chance he makes it as a high-strikeout No. 2 starter, but he could also be an excellent closer, which isn't a bad fallback option.

9. Wilderd Patino, OF, 18, Pioneer League

It will probably be a bit of a slow climb for Patino over the next couple years — he is raw, but has some similarities to a very young Cristian Pache. He will retain plus speed for the foreseeable future and could eventually grow into double-digit homer power.

10. Jeferson Espinal, OF, 17, AZL

Espinal had a great pro debut in the DSL and it earned him a brief taste of the AZL to close the year. He has a classic center fielder/leadoff hitter tool set and hits left-handed. The hope is that he doesn't grow out of his plus speed, which could happen, as he is already 6-foot, 180 pounds.

11. Corbin Martin, RHP, 24, Recovering from Tommy John surgery (July 2019)

One of the tougher prospects to rank this offseason, Martin was bad in his first five big-league starts, but his prospect stock was sky high when he got the call. There is also the slight added risk that he is not the same pitcher when he returns. He probably won't get back to the big leagues until 2021, but could still make it as a mid-rotation stater.

12. Andy Young, 2B/3B/SS, 25, Triple-A

Young is ironically on the older side by prospect standards, but he can handle all the spots on the infield, which gives him a path to a big-league career. He has yet to fail with the bat, but his age should rightfully give us pause. 

13. J.B. Bukauskas, RHP, 23, Double-A

While he has a starter's pitch mix (three plus or better pitches), everything else screams future reliever. That said, he's the rare pitching prospect whose value wouldn't crater if he moves to the bullpen, as he could be an elite closer if he can improve his command slightly.

14. Pavin Smith, 1B/OF, 24, Triple-A

The Diamondbacks have a glut of infielders who are big-league ready or close to big-league ready. Smith took a big step forward last year to keep himself in the mix, but given his age and the fact his .175 ISO was a career best, he may not hit enough to profile at the bottom of the defensive spectrum.

15. Franyel Baez, OF, 17, Dominican Summer League

Arizona's top bonus on July 2 went to Baez ($1 million) out of the D.R. He is 6-foot-3, 170 pounds, but is still growing into his frame. It is his power potential as a switch hitter that makes him appealing, as he will be an average runner at best by the time he is in his early 20s.

16. Matt Tabor, RHP, 21, High-A

Tabor pounds the strike zone and has a plus changeup, which should allow him to make it as a big-league starter if he stays relatively healthy. However, I don't see the type of upside that would lead me to stash him for the two-plus years it will take for him to reach the majors.

17. Glenallen Hill Jr., 2B, 19, Pioneer League

Hill's upside ranks in the top 10 in this system, thanks to plus-plus speed and explosive athleticism, but the likelihood of him hitting enough for it to matter is very slim. Even if he puts up good numbers in the Pioneer League, I'll be hesitant to buy in until he gets to full-season ball.

18. Kevin Cron, 1B/3B, 27, MLB

Cron, like Beer and Smith, and Christian Walker/Jake Lamb for that matter, really needs the DH to come to the NL, and it probably will in 2021 or 2022. There should be skepticism about his ability to hit enough, given his high strikeout rates at age-appropriate levels.

19. Jon Duplantier, RHP, 25, Triple-A

Pinpointing which pitching prospects will end up in the bullpen isn't the hardest thing to do, and all the signs were there with Duplantier; some people just couldn't get past his outlier 2017. He has the stuff to eventually get saves, but Arizona will probably give him one more year to prove he can stay healthy enough and throw enough strikes to start.

20. Jake McCarthy, OF, 22, Double-A

McCarthy knows how to put his plus speed to work on the bases, which is the only thing that keeps him interesting. He has never shown an ability to consistently drive the ball, and does not project to be good enough in center field to make up for his light bat.

21. Domingo Leyba, 2B/SS, 24, MLB

I think Leyba's hit tool will be at least a 55, but there probably won't be enough power or speed for him to be a viable fantasy guy in mixed leagues, even if his defense and hitting gets him a semi-prominent role.

22. Ronny Polanco, 3B/2B, 16, Dominican Summer League

One of the youngest players in the 2019 J-2 class, Polanco already shows the potential for plus power in his 5-foot-11, 180-pound frame, but that's not an ideal height/weight for a player his age. The hope is that he doesn't get so thick that he can't add value in the field.

23. Levi Kelly, RHP, 20, High-A

Kelly isn't close to as good as his numbers at Low-A suggest — he basically lived off his plus slider, which was enough for him to dominate despite a low-90s fastball and underdeveloped third pitch. Unless we hear of increased velocity or a quality changeup, he can be largely ignored.

24. Dominic Fletcher, OF, 22, High-A

The younger brother of David Fletcher, Dominic is known more for his glove in center field than his bat, but he did what he needed to do as a 21-year-old at Low-A to remain relevant. He lacks traditional center-field speed, so he will need to keep holding his own at the plate.

25. Tristin English, 3B/OF, 22, High-A

English received $500K in the third round out of Georgia Tech. He showed excellent contact skill while elevating on a regular basis, which is a good sign going forward, but it was against short-season pitchers. He could skip Low-A and go to High-A this year.

26. Justin Martinez, RHP, 18, Northwest League

Think of Martinez as a poor man's Frias — easy plus fastball, potentially plus breaking ball, less of a track record. The reliever risk is intense, but Martinez's velocity makes him worth tracking as he faces better competition.

27. Jeremy Beasley, RHP, 24, Triple-A

Beasley had been mostly under the radar prior to getting dealt from the Angels for Matt Andriese this offseason. He had poor results in the hitter-friendly PCL, but was fine at Double-A, and was better in 2018. He likely won't amount to anything useful in fantasy, but I think he's worth tracking in his new organization.

28. Alvin Guzman, OF, 18, Dominican Summer League

I almost never include guys who will likely be repeating the DSL, but Guzman's physical tools buy him one more year. Still, if someone else in your super deep league has been wowed by Guzman's workout videos, flip him now.

29. Blaze Alexander, SS/2B/3B, 20, High-A

Alexander has an absolute hose, but the rest of his tools leave a lot to be desired. He has some pop, but it's all to the pull side, and his hit tool could end up being below average.

30. Lewin De La Cruz, SS, 16, Dominican Summer League

He is not particularly toolsy, but De La Cruz is very young for the 2019 J-2 class and should stick at shortstop. He has above-average speed that could tick up as he gains strength. If he impresses with the hit tool, he could be a lot like ex-Diamondbacks prospect Liover Peguero in a couple years.

31. Buddy Kennedy, 3B/2B, 21, High-A

A bat-first infielder who doesn't fit anywhere particularly well in the field, but who has a good approach with patience and some pop, Kennedy is probably going to end up being what Young is now, a borderline Quad-A bat who needs to max out.

32. Drey Jameson, RHP, 22, Low-A

For the most part, I loved what Arizona did in the draft last year, but I was less bullish on the Jamison pick at 34 ($1.4 million bonus). He will probably end up as a reliever, but if he can make significant strides with his command, the stuff is good enough for him to be a high-strikeout starter.

ROCKIES

1. Sam Hilliard, OF, 26, MLB

The things I don't like about Hilliard are really just things I don't like about the Rockies with regard to uncertain playing time. I am a big believer in 35-HR/15-SB upside if he plays every day. In baseball years, he's younger than 26, as he didn't become a position player until 2015.

2. Brendan Rodgers, 2B/3B, 23, Triple-A

Rodgers was awful in his brief big-league debut and then needed season-ending shoulder surgery, so he's finally not extremely overrated for dynasty. There were encouraging signs at Triple-A, but with the juiced ball in the PCL, it's impossible to fully buy into all of that.

3. Michael Toglia, 1B, 21, Low-A

If we could be guaranteed that the Rockies had every intention of clearing the decks for Toglia when he is ready to be their first baseman, he would be ranked about 50 spots higher. However, I like Ryan McMahon, and think he will have established himself as a quality first baseman by the time Toglia is ready.

4. Aaron Schunk, 3B, 22, Low-A

I liked Schunk as a post-first round sleeper, but I honestly wish he'd gone to a different organization. There's just such a glut of corner-infield types in the Rockies' system. Even so, I love his hit tool and I think he's a good enough defender to stick at third.

5. Julio Carreras, 3B/SS/2B, 20, Low-A

Carreras was slightly older than we'd like to really buy into what he did in the hitter-friendly Pioneer League, but the physical tools (including plus speed) are legit. He should continue to put up good numbers with Asheville's aid.

6. Brenton Doyle, OF, 21, Low-A

Doyle's tools are slightly better than those of Carreras, but he is almost two years older and will offer less defensive versatility, so there will be more pressure on his hit tool. He is 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, so it's not a lock that he retains plus speed into his mid-20s.

7. Ryan Vilade, SS/3B, 21, Double-A

Vilade hit .250/.314/.371 away from Lancaster last season, so don't get too caught up in his overall numbers. Coors Field props up statistics as well, so he'd be interesting if he were ever an everyday player for the Rockies, but he has some guys to leap on the depth chart.

8. Yanquiel Fernandez, OF, 17, Dominican Summer League

A left-handed Cuban slugger with now strength and good bat speed, Fernandez received just shy of $300K in July, but his stock has trended up since then. He won't be much of a runner, but could hit enough to stick in a corner.

9. Colton Welker, 1B/DH/3B, 22, Triple-A

A pretty classic corner-infield tweener, Welker probably won't hit for enough power to play first base (where he is a poor defender) and isn't a good enough defender to handle third base full time. He has a good hit tool and could slot into the DH spot when that comes to the National League.

10. Adael Amador, SS/2B, 16, Dominican Summer League

Amador, who received $1.5 million on July 2, has a chance to be a switch hitter with a plus hit tool and above-average power. Despite a skinny, 6-foot, 160-pound frame, he is only an average runner. The Rockies don't have an AZL affiliate, but it's not out of the question that Amador could bypass the DSL and head stateside to the Pioneer League or Northwest League.

11. Ryan Rolison, LHP, 22, Double-A

If Rolison was in another organization, I'd be a pretty big fan of his, even though his fastball tops out at 93 mph. He has a four-pitch mix that includes a plus curveball and should throw enough strikes to stick in the rotation.

12. Tyler Nevin, 1B/3B, 22, Triple-A

One of several Rockies who were drafted as third basemen but will end up at first base, Nevin doesn't project to beat out the rest of the internal options long term. His strong command of the strike zone makes him a relevant, albeit blocked, prospect.

13. Eddy Diaz, 2B/SS, 20, Low-A

Diaz has only played in hitting-friendly environments and has never been overly young for a level, but there's no reason he can't continue his statistical success at Asheville. He has a Myles Straw ceiling, which would be awesome if he somehow (not sure how) were an everyday player for the Rockies.

14. Terrin Vavra, 2B/SS, 22, High-A

Vavra hit .224/.320/.316 away from Asheville, so don't get carried away. He is a rare lefty-hitting middle infielder, which gives him a chance to get semi-regular work, but I think his numbers will really flop when he gets to Double-A.

15. Vince Fernandez, OF/DH, 24, Triple-A

Everywhere he goes, Fernandez rakes and strikes out a lot. He has some of the best game power in the system but doesn't project to add much defensive value. Basically, he's Hilliard without the speed or the glove, so he could be an option when the DH comes to the NL.

16. Yonathan Daza, OF, 26, Triple-A

Daza is on the 40-man roster, makes contact at an elite clip and has a 93rd percentile sprint speed. That alone makes him relevant, but it's a very crowded outfield and he hits right-handed, so he would need a lot of trades and/or injuries to get a long look as an everyday guy.

17. Juan Guerrero, 3B/2B/OF/1B, 18, Pioneer League

Signed for $650K as part of the Rockies' 2018 J-2 class, Guerrero showcased excellent bat-to-ball skill and above-average speed in his pro debut. He played all over the diamond, and at 6-foot-1, 160 pounds, his defensive home is up in the air.

18. Grant Lavigne, 1B, 20, High-A

A year ago, Lavigne was up where Toglia is this year, but he was roughly league average in the Sally League (104 wRC+) and he was much worse (.229/.300/.322) away from Asheville. His 11.8 Hard% was dreadful, especially for a first baseman. He could put up good numbers in Lancaster, but it's hard to have a more disappointing year than what Lavigne did in 2019.

19. Christian Koss, 2B/3B/SS, 22, Low-A

Everyone talks about what Doyle did in the Pioneer League, but Koss rarely gets mentioned among Rockies sleepers. Doyle has better physical tools, but Koss can play three infield spots and had an elite batted-ball profile. He will probably put up great numbers at Low-A and High-A before fizzling out.

20. Elisandro Alcantara, OF, 17, Dominican Summer League

Alcantara has the tools we crave (plus power, plus speed), it will just be a matter of how his hit tool develops in the coming years. While Fernandez and Amador have a chance to make their pro debuts at one of the Rockies' stateside affiliates, Alcantara could need a year or two in the DSL.

21. Adrian Pinto, 2B/SS, 17, Dominican Summer League

He has a Jose Altuve type of build now (a little less stocky, but shorter than 5-foot-8), so the hope is he grows at least an inch or two in the coming years. Either way, Pinto has the makings of a potentially plus hit tool with plus-plus speed and the defensive chops to stick up the middle.

22. Helcris Olivarez, LHP, 19, Northwest League

A 6-foot-2, 192-pound lefty with a mid-90s fastball, Olivarez would be pretty interesting, perhaps even a top-400 prospect in another organization. He has a long way to go with his secondaries and command and will have to navigate some hitter-friendly environments on his march to the show.

23. Ezequiel Tovar, SS, 18, Northwest League

It seems like the vast majority of Rockies hitting prospects are bat-first players, but Tovar is the exception. He is the best defensive shortstop prospect in this system and could have plus speed in the majors. Tovar has a long way to go as a hitter, but his approach and batted-ball profile are solid.

24. Brian Mundell, DH/1B, 26, Triple-A

Mundell's only real chance to be a regular would be as a DH, and even there, he's probably third or fourth in line. Still, he has 55 hit and 55 power, which would be awesome in Coors, so he gets at least one more year on this list.

DODGERS

1. Gavin Lux, 2B/SS, 22, MLB

There are no real performance risks with Lux. He will either be good or really good. His throwing arm is his weakest tool and that doesn't matter for fantasy — he has already moved to second base. Lux has a picture-perfect batted-ball profile and his eye at the plate is elite. I know he's not a "sleeper" but I have a feeling I'll be drafting him in most of my redraft leagues.

2. Jeter Downs, 2B/SS/3B, 21, Double-A

The Reds really screwed up with this trade. That said, he probably wouldn't have developed like this if the Dodgers didn't get their hands on him. He offers positional versatility, plus power and above-average speed that could make him a fantasy-over-reality infielder who moves around the diamond while playing almost every day.

3. Dustin May, RHP, 22, MLB

It's easy to nitpick May due to his strikeout rates and uncertain role heading into 2020, but he reached the majors as a 21-year-old and throws six distinct pitches with above-average command, so he is extremely talented, even if his statistics don't jump off the page.

4. Josiah Gray, RHP, 22, Triple-A

Gray has had a remarkable ascent over the past two years, and has a chance to reach the majors in his second full season. We can't really put a cap on his upside, given how much he has improved since getting drafted, but a mid-rotation floor seems reasonable with normal health.

5. Luis Rodriguez, OF, 17, AZL

Rodriguez is neck and neck with Maximo Acosta as my third/fourth-favorite player from the 2019 J-2 class. He has the upside to be a plus hitter with easy plus power. The Dodgers have been hit or miss with some of their top international signees in recent years, but Diego Cartaya got off to a good start last year.

6. Kody Hoese, 3B, 22, High-A

Dodgers Magic is a real thing, which is another way of saying they might have the best player-development staff in baseball. Hoese is a good bet to have at least an above-average hit tool. Whether he develops above-average game power will be what makes or breaks the profile.

7. Michael Busch, 2B/1B/OF, 22, High-A

Busch had as many walks as professional games played in his injury-shortened pro debut, which featured a trip to the Arizona Fall League. He has a chance to be a plus hitter with plus power who can play second base, first base and left field.

8. Tony Gonsolin, RHP, 25, Triple-A

Gonsolin's fastball velocity has been all over the place in recent years, with it settling in at a league-average 94 mph last year as a starter. He is a high-spin guy with four pitches, so he should be able to make it as a No. 3 or No. 4 starter, but will probably have to wait his turn at Triple-A.

9. Zach McKinstry, 2B/3B/OF, 24, Triple-A

McKinstry forced his way onto the Dodgers' 40-man roster and looks like their latest player-development success story. It's hit-over-power, but he could be a 20-plus homer guy if he can wrangle regular work. He will also likely qualify at multiple positions.

10. DJ Peters, OF, 24, Triple-A

I'm pretty befuddled as to what happened during Peters' 2019. He stopped hitting lefties, which was the only thing I was confident he could do, but started hitting righties and improved his K/BB after a promotion to Triple-A. He's still built like a Greek god, but is stuck on a crowded depth chart.

11. Diego Cartaya, C, 18, Low-A

Cartaya had a very impressive pro debut, not only proving that he has the defensive chops to stick behind the plate, but showing above-average power potential with a chance for an average or better hit tool. The Dodgers have a lot of quality young catchers, and he has the highest ceiling of the bunch.

12. Miguel Vargas, 3B/1B, 20, High-A

There are reports that Vargas has been working very hard to stick at third base with results to back it up, so that's an encouraging sign. We know he can hit and he should be able to hit all the way up the ladder, but he might not hit for enough power to profile at first base.

13. Edwin Rios, 1B/3B, 25, Triple-A

When the DH comes to the NL, Rios could be one of the biggest beneficiaries. He's a bad defender everywhere, but he has the most raw power in this system. His strikeout rate is in the danger zone, so he has plenty to work on while he waits for the DH. He is a nice late-round draft-n-hold target this year in case injuries force him into action.

14. Keibert Ruiz, C, 21, Triple-A

It's way too soon to give up on Ruiz becoming a quality fantasy catcher, albeit one who is light on power, but he won't be dethroning Will Smith any time soon. Is it really worth stashing a catcher with 40-grade power? Probably not, unless you play in two-catcher dynasty leagues.

15. Alex De Jesus, 3B, 18, Pioneer League

I fully expect De Jesus to put up good numbers in the Pioneer League, where his plus power will translate very well. He has one of those classic big power (power-over-hit), big body, 'hopefully he can handle third base in a few years' type of profiles.

16. Andy Pages, OF, 19, Low-A

If I had to bet, I'd say this offseason is the peak of Pages' dynasty-league value. I think his uber-flyball-heavy and strikeout-heavy approach will be exposed in the Midwest League, but there's no denying his plus raw power and ability to handle right field.

17. Jimmy Lewis, RHP, 19, AZL

Lewis was diagnosed with a slight labrum tear after signing for $1.1 million, so he will likely be held back in extended ST before making his debut in the AZL. He has as high of a ceiling as any pitcher in this system, but the risk is through the roof.

18. Connor Wong, C/3B/2B, 23, Double-A

Wong is already being groomed for a super-utility role that will include some starts at catcher. He will likely spend most of the year at Triple-A, working on improving his approach so that his plus raw power can be an asset at the highest level.

19. Hyun-il Choi, RHP, 19, Low-A

One of my favorite low-level sleepers on the pitching side, Choi has good size (6-foot-2, 200 pounds), a deep repertoire and good control. His fastball is a low-90s offering, but he has the ingredients to still make it as a No. 3 starter if he can stay healthy.

20. Jerming Rosario, RHP, 17, AZL

Rosario received $650K as part of the Dodgers' 2018 J-2 class, and hit 95 mph in the DSL. A rare teenager whose best offspeed pitch is a changeup, Rosario has all the qualities to stick as a starter (size, depth of arsenal, command), but is eons away from the big leagues.

21. Cody Thomas, OF, 25, Triple-A

Thomas was a quarterback at the University of Oklahoma before switching to baseball full time, so his age is a little misleading. He is capable of playing all three outfield spots and has plus raw power. He has improved his strikeout rate every year.

22. Omar Estevez, 2B, 22, Triple-A

Estevez is a throwback second baseman, and I don't mean that as a compliment. Players with an above-average hit tool and below-average power no longer fit at the position, especially on a team as loaded as the Dodgers.

23. Devin Mann, 2B/3B, 23, Double-A

Mann put himself on the map with a good year in the Cal League, but he was old for the level and did much better against LHP (1.092 OPS) than against same-handed pitching (.810 OPS). He probably needs a trade to get a look as a regular.

24. Brandon Lewis, 21, 1B/3B, Low-A

Lewis was an interesting fantasy-over-reality pick in the fourth round last year, but he only hit in the Pioneer League, so he is less sleeperish than he could have been. He has big power, a lot of swing and miss and limited defensive utility.

25. Gerardo Carrillo, RHP, 21, High-A

Carrillo has some of the best pure stuff in the system, but too often he doesn't know where it's going. He's also 5-foot-10, so all signs point to the bullpen. Given his age, he's still worth keeping an eye on.

26. Michael Grove, RHP, 23, High-A

Grove has the potential to be a cautionary tale to reference when people dismiss the risks of Tommy John surgery. His stuff backed up in his first year back — yes he was getting strikeouts, but he was very hittable in the zone. I'll give him another year on this list to see if the stuff bounces back.

27. Cristian Santana, 3B/1B, 23, Triple-A

It's a testament to Santana that he has been largely better than league average all the way up the ladder despite a refusal to take walks. Nobody wanted him in the Rule 5 draft, and this will probably be his last time on this list, but he's young enough and close enough to get one last mention.

PADRES

1. CJ Abrams, SS/OF, 19, Low-A

Abrams seems incredibly safe for a 19-year-old prospect with just 34 games under his belt. He has an excellent frame (6-foot-2, 185 pounds) for his age and top-of-the-scale athleticism. Given his ability to get on base at a high clip, he could legitimately have some 35-steal seasons and I think he'll be a 20-homer guy. 

2. MacKenzie Gore, LHP, 21, Triple-A

I still prefer Forrest Whitley to Gore because he has already experienced the adversity that comes for almost every young pitcher and I believe he has made it out to the other side. Maybe Gore is just so special that the normal pitching prospect rules won't apply, but I think there's a good chance this is the highest his value will be over the next couple years.

3. Luis Patino, RHP, 20, Double-A

Patino is awesome, but he is also extremely risky from an injury standpoint, simply because he is a 6-foot 20-year-old who throws really hard. He could be a No. 2 starter pretty easily if he stays healthy. I assume he will need Tommy John surgery at some point soon and still have him ranked in the top 60.

4. Taylor Trammell, OF, 22, Double-A

I was pessimistic about Trammell hitting Double-A pitching, but even I didn't think he'd be that bad. I think he just out-talented players in the lower levels and lacks the hitting acumen to adjust to upper-level pitching. His speed and OBP potential keep him relevant, but I'd still be looking to cash out.

5. Luis Campusano, C, 21, Double-A

Campusano is pretty good at everything except running, which is great, but he's still a catching prospect coming off a career year in the Cal League. This seems like a great offseason to cash him out, especially in one-catcher leagues.

6. Hudson Head, OF, 18, Low-A

Head didn't go in the first round, but he received first-round money thanks to a well-rounded skill set. There's a chance he could be a 20/20 guy down the road who hits for a high average and gets on base at a good clip, but he's several years away.

7. Jake Cronenworth, SS/2B/RHP, 26, Triple-A

The Padres seemingly have six guys who are about as good as each other and are all vying for time at the keystone. Cronenworth is arguably the most intriguing of the bunch — he could hit for a high AVG with a high OBP and flirt with 15 HR and 15 SB.

8. Gabriel Arias, SS, 20, Double-A

Arias is one of the best defensive shortstop prospects in the minors and has plus raw power. Everything else will likely leave us wanting more, but he could have a long career as an everyday player who hits 25 home runs with a middling average and a low OBP.

9. Edward Olivares, OF, 24, Triple-A

Despite possessing above-average wheels, Olivares fits best in right field, which puts more pressure on his bat. He has yet to have a big season at an age-appropriate level, which leads to further concerns about his future offensive output.

10. Reggie Preciado, SS, 16, AZL

After receiving just north of $1 million out of Panama on July 2, Preciado impressed evaluators with his ability to make consistent contact despite a lanky 6-foot-4, 185-pound frame. He is a switch hitter, but the rest of the profile is reminiscent to Ronny Mauricio at the same age, where we're hoping on a great hitter with 30-homer power. He won't be much of a runner.

11. Junior Perez, OF, 18, Low-A

Going double-double (11 HR, 11 SB) as an 18-year-old in the AZL is no small feat. However, that oversells his speed and bypasses the fact that he had a pretty ugly batted-ball profile — he went to the plate looking to pull home runs out to left field. The tools make him worth tracking, but the risk is probably greater than the upside.

12. Ismael Mena, OF, 17, AZL

Mena received one of the biggest bonuses ($2.2 million) in the 2019 J-2 class, and has the type of attributes fantasy owners care about. He is a 70-grade runner with a frame (6-foot-3, 185 pounds) that should age well. Notable power won't be present early on for him, but with pro instruction and physical maturation, he could develop 15-20 homer pop.

13. Joshua Mears, OF, 19, Low-A

The Padres gave Mears an under-slot $1 million bonus after selecting him in the second round. It's a pretty classic right field profile if it all comes together. He has huge raw power but is a below-average runner. At 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, he will need to work hard to stick in the outfield.

14. Ryan Weathers, LHP, 20, High-A

Weathers has good command, and when he's on, he has mid-rotation stuff. He also has bloodlines and pedigree on his side. His big issue is his physique (6-foot-1, 230 pounds) and conditioning. He will need to work hard to stay in shape to reach his upside.

15. Hudson Potts, 3B/1B, 21, Double-A

Potts heads into his age-21 season with 129 games at Double-A under his belt, so while he will be repeating the level, he is not behind schedule from an age/level standpoint. He has plus power to the pull side, but will need to make strides with his hit tool to stay relevant.

16. Owen Miller, 2B/3B, 23, Triple-A

Miller has one of the best hit tools in this system, but this is the wrong organization for him to get a chance based on the hit tool alone. He is a versatile, albeit middling defender, but he needs a trade to get a long look as an everyday player.

17. Adrian Morejon, LHP, 21, Triple-A

Morejon can still be a valuable big-league pitcher — he's got great stuff — but the command and lack of durability have been screaming reliever for a while now. The Padres, who have been trying very hard to make Morejon a headliner in a trade, will give him one more chance to build up as a starter this year. 

18. Jorge Ona, OF, 23, Double-A

Ona had his best run as a pro at Double-A before opting for season-ending shoulder surgery. As a big (6-foot, 220-pound) R/R corner guy, he needs to absolutely mash, especially in this organization. His pedigree and promising start at Double-A keep him in this range for now.

19. Brayan Medina, RHP, 17, AZL

A 6-foot-1 Venezuelan righty, Medina has some of the best velocity among the pitchers in the 2019 J-2 class. His fastball is a great starting point, but there are some reliever traits with regard to effort and delivery. Still, this is the type of high-upside arm worth keeping tabs on.

20. Yeison Santana, 2B/SS, 19, Low-A

Santana handled himself well in the AZL as an 18-year-old, taking full advantage of the poor defenses he played against by hitting the ball on a line and on the ground to all fields. He lacks physicality but has a patient approach. Without notable speed, he needs to grow as a power hitter.

21. Tucupita Marcano, 2B, 20, High-A

Excellent contact skills can only get a player so far. Marcano lacks physicality and hits the ball on the ground way too much. It will be a challenge for him to bulk up, but he probably needs to in order to hit enough to be a regular. If he does, his plus speed would be appealing in fantasy.

22. Jose Cordero, OF, 16, Dominican Summer League

Cordero is very toolsy with plus speed and enough strength (6-foot-1, 185 pounds) to do a little damage at the plate. His hit tool is a potential weakness, but if he hits in the DSL, his tools are exciting enough to warrant a midseason pickup.

23. Esteban Quiroz, 2B, 28, Triple-A

Kind of a poor man's Luis Urias, Quiroz's emergence was part of the reason the Padres traded Urias. Unfortunately, the Padres also added Jurickson Profar and Cronenworth this offseason, so Quiroz appears as blocked as ever. 

24. Logan Driscoll, C/OF, 22, High-A

Driscoll, who received an under-slot $600K after the Padres selected him with the 73rd pick, was sent to the AFL before making his full-season debut, and he impressed in a tiny sample. He is not a great defensive catcher, so the hope is he hits enough to play the outfield while getting occasional starts behind the dish.

25. Luis Gutierrez, LHP, 16, Dominican Summer League

One of the youngest players from the 2019 J-2 class, Gutierrez has starter traits but lacks Medina's big fastball. At 6-feet, 185 pounds, he is not overly projectable, but could still add a tick or two of velocity. If he does, he has a chance to be a good mid-rotation starter.

26. Tirso Ornelas, OF, 20, High-A

It's fair to have one foot out the door with Ornelas as a prospect. Big-bodied corner guys don't really get the benefit of the doubt when they don't hit, even when they are as young as the once-promising Ornelas. He needs to absolutely rake this year to remain relevant.

27. Joey Cantillo, LHP, 20, High-A

We always have to be careful not to scout the stats on soft-tossing southpaws with good changeups. Being left-handed and having a good changeup is all one needs to have success in the lower levels. Cantillo's fastball either needs to take a step forward (not impossible) or his breaking ball and command need to max out.

28. Frank Lopez, RHP, 18, Low-A

Lopez doesn't turn 19 until late April and could open the year in the Midwest League. He has a very projectable, lean 6-foot-1 frame and a potentially plus changeup. The breaking ball needs to come along for him to be a starter.

29. Henry Baez, RHP, 17, AZL

Baez, who received $125K on July 2, has prototypical size (6-foot-3, 200 pounds) and is already touching 93 mph with his fastball. He is a good athlete with a solid breaking ball. There is a lot to dream on here, but he will need to stay on top of his conditioning.

30. Hugo Sanchez, 3B/SS, 17, Dominican Summer League

Sanchez didn't receive a big bonus out of Mexico on July 2, but he has a pretty left-handed swing and good size (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) for his age. He has a chance to develop above-average power with a good hit tool, but he is just an average runner.

31. Blake Hunt, C, 21, High-A

Hunt's numbers don't jump out, but he's a lock to stick at catcher and has above-average raw power. It would not be surprising if he put up solid numbers in the Cal League, at which point he would be a legitimate player to add in two-catcher dynasty leagues.

32. Jeisson Rosario, OF, 20, High-A 

Rosario is one of the best athletes in this system, which is saying a lot, and he also has a very patient approach. Unfortunately, his makeup is poor (he's not a bad guy, he just doesn't make adjustments), and the bat looks too light to profile anywhere right now.

33. Esteury Ruiz, OF/2B, 21, High-A

I've been pretty much out on Ruiz for a while, and others are starting to come to that conclusion after a brutal year at High-A. It wasn't just that he didn't hit, he now looks like he might fit best in left field. I only include him here to say that you should not continue stashing him.

GIANTS

1. Marco Luciano, OF/3B/SS, 18, Low-A

We know Luciano is going to be a massive source of power, even while playing half his games in San Francisco. He will also likely be a big-time OBP contributor. I think the batting average could settle in the .270-.280 range, and as he fills out his 6-foot-2 frame he will probably only be a threat to steal 8-12 bases.

2. Joey Bart, C, 23, Triple-A

While Bart has logged excellent numbers in the minors, I still think it's wise to dial back expectations for his MLB production to something like an AVG in the .255-.265 range with 25 home runs, given the home ballpark. Of course, if you own Bart in a dynasty league, you probably haven't been listening to me anyway, so dream on.

3. Luis Matos, OF, 18, AZL

Matos didn't get a seven-figure bonus, and therefore didn't come into the year with the same hype as many of his 2018 J-2 classmates, but from a tools and performance standpoint, he is at least a top-five guy from that class. His assignment will be interesting, as they could push him, or let him dominate back in the AZL out of the gate.

4. Hunter Bishop, OF, 21, Low-A

If Bishop can hit even .250 or .260, I think he'll be an OF3 due to his combination of 70 power and 60 speed. He actually hit too many flyballs in his debut and should be able to access his massive raw with a lower launch angle, which would up his batting average.

5. Heliot Ramos, OF, 20, Double-A

I'm sticking with a Yoenis Cespedes comp for Ramos' ceiling: a right-handed slugging outfielder with impressive physical gifts but a thicker frame that could eventually lead to a steep decline in athleticism. He will be one of the first players from the Giants next great core to reach the majors, likely in 2021.

6. Alexander Canario, OF, 19, Low-A

If Canario can improve his strike zone awareness, he could be a 40-homer cleanup-hitting right fielder. If he doesn't, he'll be in for a Seuly Matias 2019 season at some point as he climbs the ladder. He's a power lottery ticket whose flaws aren't extreme enough to bump him out of the top-100.

7. Will Wilson, 2B, 21, Low-A

I loved Wilson's bat before the draft, and while his debut wasn't on par with what I was expecting, it wasn't bad enough for me to jump ship. This is a nice buy-low opportunity, as he may slip to the middle of the second round in some FYPD and has plus hit/plus power upside.

8. Luis Toribio, 3B, 19, Low-A

A lefty-hitting third baseman, Toribio has a chance to be an OBP monster. He was overly pull-happy in the AZL, but has time to iron that out. He should continue to grow into at least above-average power as he adds strength.

9. Seth Corry, LHP, 21, High-A

Corry put up good numbers as a 20-year-old at Low-A, but he's not as good as those numbers suggest. He has a mid-rotation ceiling, thanks to a plus fastball and above-average curveball, but needs to improve his command and control.

10. Jaylin Davis, OF, 25, MLB

Davis showed reverse splits in the minors last year, so I'm hoping the Giants give him a look as an everyday guy, rather than confine him to the short side of a platoon. He has as much raw power as anyone projected to break camp on the 26-man roster and is also a plus runner, although he has not looked to put his speed to work much on the bases.

11. Jairo Pomares, OF, 19, Low-A

Pomares fits best in left field, so he needs to bring the laser show he put on in the AZL with him to every stop on his march to the majors. He could hit 20 home runs with 10 steals, but it's the hit tool that has to carry him.

12. Victor Bericoto, OF/1B, 18, AZL

Bericoto put on a hitting clinic in the DSL, and looks like a potential bargain out of Venezuela from the 2018 J-2 class. He is R/R and limited to first base and left field, so he needs to keep raking every step of the way.

13. Rayner Santana, C, 17, AZL

Santana dominated in the DSL last year (170 wRC+), most notably walking at a very high clip and hitting 10 home runs in 48 games. He has good size (6-foot-2, 180 pounds) and is one of the best catcher sleepers in the minors.

14. Anthony Rodriguez, SS/3B, 17, Dominican Summer League

Rodriguez has an ideal 6-foot-2, 165-pound frame. The switch hitter already shows the potential for above-average power, and he could grow into being an offensive force as he matures physically. It's possible he could end up at third base, but the bat is going to be his calling card.

15. Aeverson Arteaga, SS, 17, Dominican Summer League

A classic Venezuelan shortstop prospect, Arteaga should be able to stick at the six and should maintain plus speed into his 20s. It will have to be hit over power, as he will probably never develop 20-homer pop, but he has good bat-to-ball skills.

16. Mauricio Dubon, 2B/SS, 25, MLB

Dubon has been overrated for a while because people look at his stolen-base numbers in the minors or his computer-generated projected steals for 2020 and they think they're getting a burner. He was barely better than league average with his sprint speed last year. He has below-average power and not as much speed as you may think.

17. Grant McCray, OF, 19, Low-A

McCray received a hair under $700K after the Giants took him in the third round. He has plus speed and could stick in center field. He has a patient approach but needs to adjust his swing to hit more line drives (61.8 GB% in the AZL).

18. Manuel Mercedes, RHP, 17, Dominican Summer League

At 6-foot-3, 185 pounds, Mercedes has a perfect pitcher's body for his age, and he already sits in the low-to-mid-90s with his fastball. His slider is also ready to miss bats, but refining his command and control will be of high importance as he enters pro ball.

19. Logan Webb, RHP, 23, MLB

Webb has a chance to make it as a back-end starter, so he could be a streaming option in his home starts. However, this is the type of player who is wasted on most dynasty-league rosters.

20. Logan Wyatt, 1B, 22, High-A

The Giants gave Wyatt just under $1 million in the second round. His patience at the plate was on full display in his pro debut, but he also logged horrifically high groundball rates, so he will need a launch angle adjustment in order to hit for enough power to profile at first base.

21. Adrian Sugastey, C, 18, AZL

An older signing in the Giants' 2019 J-2 class, Sugastey is a catcher from Panama with a very advanced bat. He also comfortably projects to stick behind the plate, so he could pop this year in the AZL.

22. Blake Rivera, RHP, 22, High-A

Rivera is a big 6-foot-4, 225-pound righty with a power fastball/curveball combo and an elite ability to generate weak contact. He will need to greatly improve his changeup and command to make it as a starter.

23. Garrett Frechette, 1B, 19, Low-A

The Giants gave Frechette double slot value in the fifth round. He didn't walk much or hit any home runs in his pro debut, but at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, the expectation is that he will develop above-average power from the left side.

24. Ronaldo Flores, C/1B, 17, AZL

While Santana dominated the DSL by walking and hitting for power, Flores impressed with his contact skills and all-fields approach. It's a bit of a concern that he split time between catcher and first base. The power will have to tick up if he has to move off catcher.

25. Sean Hjelle, RHP, 22, Double-A

OK, list all the good big-league starters you can think of who are 6-foot-10 or taller... yeah, I couldn't think of any either. Hjelle is 6-foot-11 and the stuff is just OK. The best-case scenario is that he relies on generating weak contact and makes it as a back-end starter.

26. Kean Wong, 2B/OF, 24, Triple-A

There's probably nothing here, especially in Wong's new home park, but he displayed good plate discipline numbers at Triple-A before flopping in a tiny sample in the majors. The Giants are adding all the right Triple-A/Quad-A guys a rebuilding team should be taking fliers on.

27. Jamie Westbrook, OF, 24, Triple-A

The fact that Westbrook landed with the Giants on a minor-league deal after getting cut loose by Arizona suggests he'll never amount to much, but I've always liked the approach, so if he somehow emerges with a prominent role, it wouldn't be the craziest thing if he held his own.

28. Armani Smith, OF, 21, Low-A

Smith, a 6-foot-4 slugger out of UC Santa Barbara, was given just under $300K in the seventh round. He has huge raw power and the batted-ball profile was excellent against short-season pitching, but he may strike out too much for that power to really matter.

29. Esmerlin Vinicio, LHP, 17, Dominican Summer League

A rail-thin 6-foot-2 southpaw from Venezuela, Vinicio should have at least a plus fastball down the road, and while he has a starter's delivery, he will need to add weight to his 150-pound frame to avoid moving to the bullpen.

30. Tristan Beck, RHP, 23, Double-A

Beck has a plus curveball and an above-average fastball. He needs to show that he can hold up over a full season while improving his command and his third-pitch changeup. If he does, he could be a good No. 4 starter.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James Anderson
James Anderson is RotoWire's Lead Prospect Analyst, Assistant Baseball Editor, and co-host of Farm Fridays on Sirius/XM radio and the RotoWire Prospect Podcast.
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