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  1. 600th post! Congratulations! I always look forward to your analysis and reference your articles frequently on draft day; you’re the best writer on the site. Thanks!

    Comment by Bobby Ayala — January 17, 2012 @ 1:35 pm

  2. Odor played 2B, not SS, last year. I don’t think he’s considered a shortstop prospect.

    Comment by Lone Star Ball — January 17, 2012 @ 1:36 pm

  3. What’s up with Zach Cone? Disappointing considering he was a first-round draft pick?

    Comment by Nate Douglas — January 17, 2012 @ 1:41 pm

  4. No Tanner Scheppers?

    Comment by Kyle — January 17, 2012 @ 1:45 pm

  5. Is there a reason besides injuries that keeps Tanner Scheppers off this list?

    Comment by Austin Brancheau — January 17, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

  6. West is seen as more of a RP prospect than Scheppers at this point in time by most (/basically all) prospect guys

    Comment by knockoutking — January 17, 2012 @ 1:53 pm

  7. he is a lesser RP prospect than west, although imho he is a better RP prospect than Kirkman.

    Comment by knockoutking — January 17, 2012 @ 1:53 pm

  8. Good. A team with shortstops named Elvis Andrus, Rougned Odor, AND Jurickson Profar would have an unfair advantage in the Totally Awesome Names competition.

    Comment by Well-Beered Englishman — January 17, 2012 @ 2:18 pm

  9. Totally random, but I thought you already did the Nationals Top Prospects for next year. Is the link on the main site old, or have you not completed that org. yet?

    Comment by Sully — January 17, 2012 @ 2:34 pm

  10. I’m surprised by Roman Mendez being left off the list entirely. He posted some great numbers in single A this year but seems to get overlooked a lot.

    Comment by Ben — January 17, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

  11. I found the updated Nats Prospects from November, so the link on the main prospects page is incorrect

    Comment by Sully — January 17, 2012 @ 2:42 pm

  12. Mendez was a late cut… He’s probably No. 16 or 17.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 3:50 pm

  13. Scheppers was heavily considered for the 11-15 range but ultimately missed because he’s a reliever with some serious injuries concerns, both from last year and during his college career.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 3:58 pm

  14. I’d say both are pretty much relievers at the MLB level… I have West as the sleeper as the players considered for that spot are lesser-known guys… Scheppers is too high profile for that spot and the sleeper is not necessary considered the 16th best prospect… I am in no way saying West is better than Scheppers.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 4:01 pm

  15. I’m not super tuned in with Rangers prospects, but I expected Olt to be top 5 based on what I’ve heard/read. Isn’t #9 lower than most consider him?

    Comment by d_i — January 17, 2012 @ 4:41 pm

  16. His age and injuries combined with the progress and high-ceilings of the other players are the reasons he isn’t seen as a top-5 prospect in the organization

    Comment by J Walter Weatherman — January 17, 2012 @ 5:09 pm

  17. So you don’t think Jason Parks, Jamey Newberg, Jason Cole, and others are up on Olt’s injury history and birthdate? Or were they just seduced by Olt’s humility and grit?

    Given the rest of this list, I’d argue that it’s Marc’s lack of familiarity with the 2011 performances within the Rangers’ farm system that leads him to rank Olt so low — not general (and questionable) statements about his health and age.

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 5:18 pm

  18. I can imagine Nadel’s 2016 call now: “Odor to Profar for one, Profar to Guzman, double play!”

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 5:37 pm

  19. (And I shouldn’t forget the potential Alfaro-to-Profar caught-stealing mouthful — even if Hulet didn’t pay proper obeisance to #TheLegend.)

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

  20. I definitely don’t think those three guys are wrong. I’m rather familiar with the system… I just put added value on pitching and up the middle guys. As a result, Olt takes a small hit on defensive value, as well as a small hit for the injury (although not career threathening or chronic) and a small hit for age/level. He also has rather high strikeout rates and maintained a decent batting average in the past due to high BABIPs (not couting ’11 when his BABIP dipped along with his batting average). I’m also a fairly big fan of both Lamb and Sardinas so may have ranked them a little higher than others… although I haven’t seen any other their lists.

    So there were enough question marks (and intriguing other options), for me, to be cautious in ranking Olt higher.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 5:53 pm

  21. You do realize that Sardinas injured his other shoulder in July, has had surgery now on shoulders both in the last 2 years and now has significant concerns about his prolonged shoulder health?

    If you ding Olt for his collar bone, you have to pretty much hammer Sardinas.

    Comment by laxtonto — January 17, 2012 @ 6:06 pm

  22. Well, first off, I was responding to JWW’s point about Olt’s injury and age, which made a generalization (“[Olt] isn’t seen as a top-5 prospect in the organization”) out of your specific ranking.

    But in reply: I’m not the first to notice this, but given your favoring of Sardinas, isn’t it worth pointing out that he’s now had surgery on *both* shoulders? On Lamb: I haven’t seen him pitch. I’m wondering if you have, and if not, what you’re basing your ranking on — especially since the reviews I’ve seen project him to be a reliever.

    Overall, your list is just… odd. No Akins, Alfaro, Guzman, or Jackson. Kirkman, Lamb, and Skole quite high. David Perez fairly low. It just doesn’t seem to reflect much of an underlying logic…

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 6:11 pm

  23. One more question — more to do with your approach than with Olt specifically, but it’s still about Olt and his offensive performance. The strikeouts are certainly a concern; everyone I’ve read recognizes that. But: if you’re going to go into peripheral stats off such small samples, what do you do with the .387 OBP on the .314 BABIP at high-A — the highest level Olt reached, and the one at which he played the most games in 2011?

    I should say that I’m actually low on Olt’s hit tool, relative to the many Rangers prospectophiles at, say, Lone Star Ball. I am far from thinking his bat his a guaranteed commodity. But if you’re not going by eye, here, this list really is baffling in several ways, and it’d be useful if you laid out your logic. Is it just gut?

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 6:27 pm

  24. Is Rougned Odor the son of Rouglas Odor, former Indians (late 80′s – early 90′s) farmhand? They’re both born in the same city, Maracaibo VZ.

    Comment by Wait Til Next Year — January 17, 2012 @ 6:43 pm

  25. He knows the system like any baseball dork knows the system: break out the year-end stats and the BA handbook and pretend that your rankings and haughty homilies actually mean something more than anyone else’s.

    Comment by Goyo — January 17, 2012 @ 6:48 pm

  26. I believe Rouglas is Rougned’s uncle, not his father.

    Comment by Snark — January 17, 2012 @ 7:07 pm

  27. Yup. I am aware of Sardinas injury history. But he also has a strong pedigree than Olt, stronger overall tools and impressive results when he’s been able to get on the field. He was also performing at a young age even for the rookie leagues.

    Prior to publishing the list I actually moved the 7-10 guys around a bit… For me they’re all very close and I wouldn’t argue a different ranking of the four.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 9:15 pm

  28. Alfaro was originally in the Top 15 but was a late cut. Jackson received some consideration, as did Guzman (although I don’t have enough personal info to rank him highly at this point), but Akins did not.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — January 17, 2012 @ 9:21 pm

  29. No Jorge Alfaro makes this list invalid.

    Comment by mc — January 17, 2012 @ 9:34 pm

  30. You’d look a lot less foolish if you just admit you didn’t know that Sardinas had been shelved again this year after surgery for the same injury to the other shoulder rather than trying to argue that a kid with a congenital shoulder defect merits a top 10 ranking. But then, that’s just me…

    Comment by Goyo — January 17, 2012 @ 10:07 pm

  31. Marc, I appreciate your willingness to respond to the comments, but these are sort of non-responsive responses. When you say you don’t have enough “personal info to rank [Guzman] highly at this point,” what does that mean? You noted that you haven’t checked out Parks’ rankings, or Cole’s evaluations, or presumably, the all-prospect teams Cole did with Parks — so what are you relying on? (It’s hard to think of two guys who know the Rangers’ prospects better than Cole and Parks.) If your personal info doesn’t come at least in part from their evaluations, where does it come from? BA? Goldstein? Sickels? Personal contacts in scouting, or in front offices? Just stats? Some combination?

    What information do you have, for example, that led you to exclude Akins from consideration altogether, but put Skole at 12? What data lead to Alfaro — and Mendez — being cut, but Lamb being ranked 8th and Kirkman kept on at 11? I know you have limited space and time, but these are questions that could be answered without overwhelming verbiage.

    If you’d explain your sources and ranking process (“Scouts tell me that Kirkman will almost certainly never start, and that his potential contribution from the ‘pen isn’t anywhere near what David Perez could bring as a starter — but because Kirkman could contribute in 2012, and Perez is still very raw, Kirkman gets the nod from me”) that would help — but there just doesn’t seem to be consistency behind your rankings, and you don’t seem willing to explain in any detail. It’s been mostly “I’m a big fan of this guy, this guy got cut, this guy didn’t get consideration” without much rhyme or reason. And when you have explained your thought process, there are holes you leave unfilled. The question about basing Olt’s ranking in part on his peripherals in about 750 PA, for example, is still out there (not only as a specific question, but as one about your general approach). So is the question of why you’re apparently writing off Sardinas’ serious injuries — whatever his pedigree, how much of a track record does he really have? What impressive results are you talking about? If they’re not what you see in his stats, what are they, and where are you seeing them?

    I know you’re sort of taking it on the chin, here, and I’m sorry if this feels like so much piling on. This is exactly the sort of responsibility that baseball bloggers — especially those of the saberist persuasion, who gave FanGraphs its first audience — demand from “mainstream media” guys all the time. Heck, I’ve seen FanGraphs demand this sort of transparency and logic from baseball writers.

    Comment by Snark — January 18, 2012 @ 12:32 am

  32. Yeah, am with you. Mendez is strangely overlooked for a kid with his natural talent.

    Comment by SM Jenkins — January 18, 2012 @ 9:19 am

  33. The thing I like about this site is that you get a solid premise, with the addition of pertinent information from folks that are interested. When you think of a question, you go look it up yourself, and bring it to the Board. Keep it up. This is an awesome off season for the Rangers and learning about them is cool. We’re all enjoying it.

    Comment by SlowBluesguy — January 18, 2012 @ 1:17 pm


    Comment by JESUS CH. — June 9, 2012 @ 1:20 am

  35. Why in the world is Alexi Ogando’s name not on this list?????? Somebody please explain this to me!!!!

    Comment by Ann Claps — October 22, 2012 @ 3:19 am

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