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  1. That’s a lot of shortstops ahead of Jonathan Schoop, who played half a season in A+ as a 19 yo. Simmons and Segura, for instance, were both also at A+, are 2 years older, and only .050 or so OPS points better than Schoop (~.700 vs ~.750).

    Comment by Os Fan — March 12, 2012 @ 9:36 am

  2. “Yu Darvish, RHP, Texas – Would rank 8th overall”

    LOL – Okay! I’ll take Darvish, you can have Teheran!

    Comment by John — March 12, 2012 @ 9:41 am

  3. Ok,

    You can pay for Darvish, I’ll pay for Teheran!

    Comment by Dan Holland — March 12, 2012 @ 9:45 am

  4. You have Josh Bell as the #2 Pirates prospect in the top 15. Here, Bell is ranked #50 and Taillon #10?

    Comment by mike — March 12, 2012 @ 9:58 am

  5. Lots of love for Phils and Braves in the back-end of the list.

    Comment by some guy — March 12, 2012 @ 9:58 am

  6. I’m not the biggest Teheran fan, but the kid is playing in his age-21 season and not his age-26 season. There’s a reason why these lists are nothing more than educated guess work, and arguing over fifteen spots, let alone one spot, is trivial.

    I understand that everyone loves ranked lists, but balancing ceiling with probability of success isn’t exactly a perfect science. Mark could essentially pick two names at random from the list and write convincing arguments for both players.

    With that said, it’s been painful looking through the first base rankings lately. Who are three or four players you believe might end up at first base, Mark?

    Comment by Kris — March 12, 2012 @ 10:02 am

  7. Jesus Montero 13th? He will prove you wrong that he should be a lot higher on this list.

    Comment by Slats — March 12, 2012 @ 10:04 am

  8. My favorite teams prospect is only ranked #something?!
    How dare you, fool!

    He/She will prove you wrong in the long run, and then you’ll be sorry, you won’t be able to sleep at night!

    Comment by sc2gg — March 12, 2012 @ 10:18 am

  9. I’m curious, are relievers simply ineligible for a high ranking in your eyes? Clearly they have less value, but most lists would have someone like Addison Reed fairly high nonetheless.

    Comment by JohnnyBigPotatoes — March 12, 2012 @ 10:18 am

  10. I doubt the ranking takes into consideration Darvish’ contract at all, just like they wouldn’t downgrade a 1st round pick who got a huge signing bonus over an 8th round gem (like Harper/Moore)

    Comment by Jon — March 12, 2012 @ 10:19 am

  11. Probably because most great RPs come from the failed SP prospects on this list. Just like a lot of 2B come from failed SS prospects or shifted 2B prospects.

    Comment by Jon — March 12, 2012 @ 10:20 am

  12. You seem really high on the Mets 3 pitching prospects. What’s your take on the Familia starter vs. reliever debate? Any chance he starts?

    Comment by ImKeithHernandez — March 12, 2012 @ 10:20 am

  13. Addison Reed is just off the Top 100. I do tend to penalize relievers a lot for lack of overall value.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 10:23 am

  14. Simmons is an elite defensive SS while Schoop is likely going to move off of the position. I’d certainly have him in my top 100, but not ahead of either of the two you just mentioned.

    Comment by Nitram Odarp — March 12, 2012 @ 10:28 am

  15. +1 to this. Where is Schoop?

    Comment by Tyler — March 12, 2012 @ 10:28 am

  16. Consider yourself lucky. My favorite team has none in the top 100 and I think that’s accurate. More evidence Kenny Williams is surviving off 2005.

    Comment by MikeS — March 12, 2012 @ 10:29 am

  17. Can’t vouch for how good of a defender Schoop is, but according to many scouting reports there are few defenders better than Simmons at Short. And also Simmons being the proper age for his level isn’t detrimental to his value, And 11 points of wRC+ is a pretty big difference, In 2011 difference that’s like the difference between Zobrist and Kendrick. 10 batting runs, nothing to stick your nose up at.

    Comment by Scott — March 12, 2012 @ 10:30 am

  18. No Zack Cox?

    Comment by Tyler — March 12, 2012 @ 10:30 am

  19. I’m surprised by the way the rankings played out with regard to the Padres. Considering that their highest prospect on the list is at 39 and they “only” have five players in the top 100 I wouldn’t have guessed that you’d have them at #1 if this list had come out before your org rankings. And for an organization who’s strength is RHP its interesting that they don’t have any pitchers in the top 100. I guess it shows how you feel about their depth.

    Comment by Drakos — March 12, 2012 @ 10:32 am

  20. I think you should consider contracts for this. In almost all cases, it makes very little difference as you are looking for upside that easily surpasses the contract many times over. This of course only shows how stupid it would be to rank these guys. The point of prospects is the 6-7 years of team control at bargain basement prices. I think that’s why fans care so much.

    Comment by TK — March 12, 2012 @ 10:38 am

  21. Great list. Things that jumped out at me were the omissions of Gary Sanchez, Nick Franklin, Robbie Erlin, and Chad Bettis. Certainly not unjustifiable to leave them off, though would love to hear more about the thinking as to why they didn’t make it.

    Also, Archie Bradley at 12 and Zack Wheeler at 17 are definitely more aggressive rankings than most other places, but I like them both also for their huge upside. Am a bit surprised given Wheeler’s ranking that Carlos Martinez is so low, since they seem similar as guys with amazing stuff but a history of control problems.

    Overall a really great list though, thanks!

    Comment by Ben — March 12, 2012 @ 10:45 am

  22. Teheran may be 5 or 6 years away from his peak while Darvish should be there now. It seems a reasonable bet to think Teheran surpasses the current version of Darvish.

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 10:50 am

  23. DH!

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 10:51 am

  24. You list Atlanta as tops with 8 prospects on the list but unless I can’t count, there are only 7:

    Teheran
    Vizcaino
    Delgado
    Gilmartin
    Pastornicky
    Simmons
    Bethancourt

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 10:53 am

  25. Keith Law ranked them #1 and did not rep them well on his top 100 as well. Apparently there are 15-20 for sure big leaguers in that system.

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 10:55 am

  26. I’m absolutely sure that Jesus Montero will prove Marc Hulet “wrong”, in the sense that Montero, who is actually going to be in the big leagues this season will be more productive in his career than one or more of the players ahead of him (especially since most of them are pitchers). But this will not actually prove anybody wrong. But the fact is that Montero will spend most of his career giving no defensive contribution. If he becomes everything he could possibly be he’s Miguel Cabrera. Leaving the pitchers out of the conversation the other position players just have more upside because of their defense. Profar, Harper and Trout all have elite hitting tools, are quality defenders at premium positions and are plus baserunners, they just have more ways to contribute. I would agree that I would rank Montero above some of these pitchers. But if they turn into Clayton Kershaw they are also just more valuable than Montero.

    Comment by Preston — March 12, 2012 @ 11:02 am

  27. I’m not bashing your rankings or anything because I don’t know about prospects as much as I used to (most of my friends already made it up, or are out of pro baseball), but what makes Cosart not in the top 100? Most lists have him right around Singleton

    Comment by Josh — March 12, 2012 @ 11:05 am

  28. +1

    Comment by Expos67 — March 12, 2012 @ 11:06 am

  29. No Gary Sanchez? I’m sure he’d be ranked higher than Campos/Betances/Williams

    Comment by Always Sunny in CP — March 12, 2012 @ 11:08 am

  30. wait nevermind. I just went back and saw the Yankees rankings and he’s behind all of them. Weird because he seems to appear in many other major publications’ top 100 rankings

    Comment by Always Sunny in CP — March 12, 2012 @ 11:10 am

  31. Really though Marc, how does Josh Bell rank ahead of Jameson Taillon in his own system, but behind him (by 40 spots) in the top 100?

    Comment by mike — March 12, 2012 @ 11:19 am

  32. Ok, so top prospects for 2012? Generally when people say top prospects for X year they mean prospects coming up, yet you have Lindor (no where near the majors) on the list above Pomeranz and fail to list Willin Rosario at all.

    I’m seriously confused by this, shouldn’t opportunity be taken into account for a list like this?

    Comment by Chris — March 12, 2012 @ 11:31 am

  33. By that logic Russell, you could argue that you don’t even know if Teheran will make it to the big leagues or flame out / come down with chronic injuries while we know that Darvish will start the 2012 season in the Rangers rotation.

    Comment by Chris — March 12, 2012 @ 11:34 am

  34. Who are these “people”?
    Mark’s list is done just like BA, KLaw etc, do theirs where ceiling and probability are balanced.
    Opportunity should mean nothing for these lists. If a better prospect is blocked and a weaker prospect has an opportunity to start in the majors, the better prospect should still rank higher.

    Comment by JayTeam — March 12, 2012 @ 11:50 am

  35. Keith Law: “Top 100 Prospects of 2012″ “For” does indeed sound like he’s talking about impact for this year.

    Comment by byron — March 12, 2012 @ 11:52 am

  36. Wow, Cards get the shaft here. Only Mayo gave less love.

    Comment by johnorpheus — March 12, 2012 @ 11:54 am

  37. What prospect lists are you reading? This list is like the vast majority of them in that it assesses future performance without regard to arrival date in the majors. Unless you are reading lists developed just for fantasy purposes, which typically do take into account proximity to the majors, this is the usual sort of ranking.

    Comment by geo — March 12, 2012 @ 11:55 am

  38. I just can’t fathom Javy Baez being so much higher than Brett Jackson.

    Would you ever trade an MLB-ready CF with a 3 WAR floor for an 18-year old with 18 professional PA who’s sure to move off his position? That’s basically what it comes down to.

    Comment by harryddunn — March 12, 2012 @ 11:58 am

  39. Who are the guys in the list with the greatest chance for helium for next year’s list?

    Comment by JT — March 12, 2012 @ 12:04 pm

  40. This is not a criticism, since I don’t know anything about the prospects from the teams other than the Giants.
    Having, said that, I’m surprised the Giants have only Gary Brown on the list and not at least Joe Panik as well.

    Comment by Baltar — March 12, 2012 @ 12:22 pm

  41. FYI, you have Segura at #91, but not listed amongst your positional breakdown (guessing b/c you have him split as 2B & SS).

    Comment by Dan Out West — March 12, 2012 @ 12:42 pm

  42. No love for Mike Olt of Texas? He was ranked 43 in Baseball America, 45 by Baseball Prospectus, and 75 by KLaw.

    Comment by Ed — March 12, 2012 @ 12:44 pm

  43. It’s hard to want a guy to make a decent showing in these rankings, when he’s already limited to a relief role. I can see an 80-100 appearance if he’s amazing, but in my opinion, as soon as the pitching prospect is deemed “incapable” of contributing as a starter, it’s more towards the direction of a hitter being incapable of contributing everyday or not being at least replacement level.

    Many of these starting pitchers may only become relief pitchers in the end, but I would say that most currently have more value because of they still have potential to soak up quite a bit more innings above replacement level as a starter.

    Addison could accumulate more WAR as a relief pitcher than many people on this list, but then again, I also think that WAR can be pretty generous to a decent/good relief pitcher.

    Comment by baty — March 12, 2012 @ 1:03 pm

  44. I also was surprised to see that many 3B ahead of Olt. His bat has similar strengths and weaknesses as that of Michael Choice, but he plays a more important defensive position.

    Comment by t ball — March 12, 2012 @ 1:29 pm

  45. Ah, quit your whining and go enjoy your World Series title.

    Comment by reillocity — March 12, 2012 @ 1:34 pm

  46. How is Brett Jackson a worse prospect than Anthony Rizzo? Jackson plays good defense at a premium defensive position, while Rizzo plays 1B. Is Rizzo that much of a better hitter than Jackson?

    Comment by Edwin — March 12, 2012 @ 1:36 pm

  47. Tee Hee…. “she”…

    Comment by The Typical Idiot Fan — March 12, 2012 @ 1:50 pm

  48. Not that hard to figure out. Taillon is really good, Bell is just good.

    Comment by The Typical Idiot Fan — March 12, 2012 @ 1:53 pm

  49. Darvish at 8th? what a joke. i mean come on

    Comment by Daniel — March 12, 2012 @ 1:54 pm

  50. Brett Jackson does not have a 3 WAR floor. When you K nearly 30% of the time in AAA, your floor is Chris Davis and Brandon Wood.

    Comment by Los — March 12, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

  51. Gary Sanchez? Kid had more HR in less at bats than Bryce Harper in the same league.

    Comment by YanksFanInBeantown — March 12, 2012 @ 2:14 pm

  52. Drew Stubbs waves hello.

    Neither of those players were doomed specifically by K’s, rather by their complete lack of strike-zone awareness.

    BB:K in the Minors:
    Davis – .32
    Wood – .38
    Jackson – .55

    Like I said, there’s little reason to think he’ll be worse than Stubbs offensively, which comfortably keeps him a 3+ player once he hits the majors.

    Comment by harryddunn — March 12, 2012 @ 2:44 pm

  53. sc2gg what city are you from? A weird curiosity of mine since I think I know all BJ fans in Canada. I won’t stalk you. Until you answer.

    Comment by graemecharles — March 12, 2012 @ 2:45 pm

  54. I am always surprised at people who place Baez above Jackson and Rizzo above both. I’d either go Rizzo-Jackson-Baez or Baez-Jackson-Rizzo. If you want the ceiling, it should be about Barz, really. If its about WAR in 2013, I’m guessing Jackson comes out better.

    Comment by Subtle — March 12, 2012 @ 2:54 pm

  55. I wondered the same thing. And, of course, Marc still has no love for Starling Marte. This is the first Top 100 list I’ve seen without Marte this year. I’m convinced he’ll be a cross between Austin Jackson and Adam Jones.

    Comment by TKay — March 12, 2012 @ 2:58 pm

  56. Just curious: What’s your process here, Marc? Is this based on reading other lists/scouting reports, statistics, your own personal observations (if so, what kind of background/training have you had in baseball scouting?), talking to professional scouts/industry people…? If it’s all of the above, about what are the proportions? Thanks.

    Comment by theeiffeltower — March 12, 2012 @ 3:05 pm

  57. Reinsdorf has a rep for not wanting to spend on drafts. Not entirely Kenny’s fault..but he could still build a smart scouting base to find hidden value better.

    Comment by derek — March 12, 2012 @ 3:22 pm

  58. You mean a guy who strikes out a ton (25%+), walks very little (4%), plays questionable defense (-4 UZR/150), steals about 10 bags per season, and has pretty poor power (.110 ISO)?

    Comment by Will — March 12, 2012 @ 3:35 pm

  59. MLB.com has Willin Rosario at #63, BA has him at 87, BP has him at 61. The only site that I’ve been to that hasn’t had him ranked was THB, and even then the author of the rankings said that placing him in the 80′s would have been more or less fair but he personally ranked him in between 110-125.

    Considering that the title is FOR 2012 and not Top prospects: 2012 or Top prospects of 2012, this seems like it’s a ranking based on this year’s projected performance at the MLB level. If that was the author’s mistake in how he worded it, fine, I won’t hold it against him, however, leaving Rosario off a top 100 when three of the most respected ranking systems have him between 60-90 seems to be a poor choice. Then again, if they were all the same, there wouldn’t be a point to having so many of them.

    Comment by Chris — March 12, 2012 @ 3:36 pm

  60. Yes.

    Comment by Fan — March 12, 2012 @ 3:43 pm

  61. These comments are a complete waste of time. If you know anything about prospects, stop here. “I can’t believe Ronny Woo Woo didn’t make it.” “How is Ronny Woo Woo ahead of the Billy Goat” “Yu Darvish blah blah” “Shouldn’t you factor in 2012 impact, closeness to the majors, age, blah blah.” STOP! STOP! STOP! +1

    Comment by Matt — March 12, 2012 @ 4:04 pm

  62. Just curious how these rankings get made up. Chris Reed was #3 prospect in Dodgers system back in Feb, and today he’s #2. So what changed between Feb. and today that made Reed that much better, or Eovaldi so much worse?

    Comment by jeff_bonds — March 12, 2012 @ 4:23 pm

  63. You definitely have to balance ceiling versus probability. The same thing can be said for both players though. There’s a non-zero chance that JT never becomes more than a #3. Theres also a non-zero chance Yu is just another DiceK. I said its a reasonable bet to assume JT’s peak will reach or surpass Yu’s and I stand by that. Consider this:

    Most opinions I’ve heard equate NPB to AAA. So, in effect the two both dominated the same levels last year. Yu was old for the level while JT was incredibly young for the level.

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 4:30 pm

  64. Stubbs has hit 3 WAR once so far and thats with 3 plus tools where Jackson has 0. I see 3 WAR as Jackson’s peak. If 3 WAR was truly his floor, he’d be Carlos Beltran. He isnt.

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 12, 2012 @ 4:41 pm

  65. For clarification, that was a cross between Jackson and Jones, though upon closer inspection of Marte, the comparison isn’t that far off.

    Comment by Will — March 12, 2012 @ 4:42 pm

  66. Love the Rankings! id only adjust a few.(In dif. orders)
    Well for instance. tho’ unproven at any pro level as of yet.. Trevor Bauer is an absolute stick of pitching dynamite! he has (12) Twelve different pitches. That to me is astounding.I clearly have him an automatic top 7 prospect. Also Mike Montgomery. I like him and he actually has to fall back way down from 33 on your chart to closer to 50. He Lacks the confidence that is required of BIG League Pitchers. Montgomery also needs to create a Platoon Out pitch. I Hope HE Succeeds!.. Yu Darvish (if was included You list him as 8th..) would be (3rd) Third on my list. He has an Arsenal as well retaining (9-10) Nine-Ten Different pitches . Even tho’ he only displays (7) Seven. which by American Basesball will be elite in itself.Yu also PinPoints both sides of the plate has a few Filthy pitches and some serious peripheral stats. Again these are my own personal evaluations and I am 100% backing the notion MATT MOORE will be #1 Prospect… He Earned it after what he accomplished past couple of seasons in minors.. I expect Bryce Harper (#2 Prospect) to go Down to Triple-A for (20) Twenty Days… Washington will wish to push back his ( FA) Free Agency time by another whole season… by all means will allow him to strengthen his calf … Bryce to me is somewhere between a Young Griffey and Kemp Mixture.(MY Bold Batting Prediction). if he puts it together like he has been showing. He Can Seriously garner the ROY Battling only Matt Moore for that Title.. Thanks for this chance to speak on Your/my Prospects… hope for feedback if possible from anyone reading this thanks.. (Punctuation i am not…#s I AM)!!! ty

    Comment by thatwhizkid — March 12, 2012 @ 5:27 pm

  67. Jackson might not hit .240 in the bigs if he can’t get his contact issues in check. Small sample, but 30% K rate in AAA is a VERY bad sign. Even Drew Stubbs and Mark Reynolds didn’t K that much in the minors.

    Comment by Norm — March 12, 2012 @ 5:40 pm

  68. You’re so right, Matt.

    BTW Where’s Gary Sanchez? No way there’s 100 better prospects in the game than Sanchez. What kind of fools were behind this list?!!! :-)

    Comment by RobM — March 12, 2012 @ 5:42 pm

  69. Drew Stubbs never struck out 30% of the time in the minors either.

    Comment by Norm — March 12, 2012 @ 5:43 pm

  70. Very true, but they have him listed as a catcher.

    Comment by RobM — March 12, 2012 @ 5:44 pm

  71. Man, the White Sox’s MLB team is trending down and they have easily the worst farm system in the game right now. The road back is not going to be quick, and it will only happen if Reisndorf decides to focus on development through the minors.

    Comment by RobM — March 12, 2012 @ 5:48 pm

  72. Bettis, wheeler, rosario are missing, and pomeranz is too love

    Comment by jim — March 12, 2012 @ 6:23 pm

  73. Should read too low

    Comment by jim — March 12, 2012 @ 6:24 pm

  74. grossman and heredia from buccos

    Comment by matt — March 12, 2012 @ 6:26 pm

  75. Well, Matt, at least one comment was a waste of time.

    Comment by Baltar — March 12, 2012 @ 6:29 pm

  76. I thought he made it pretty clear that it’s just his opinion. And, if you ever criticize him in a comment, he will make it clear that he thinks his is opinion is unassailable.

    Comment by Baltar — March 12, 2012 @ 6:38 pm

  77. Well, it’s especially hard to figure out, TIF, since mike is saying that Bell ranks *higher* than Taillon in the Pirates’ Top 15 that Marc put out a while ago, but is 40 spots *lower* than him here on the Top 100.

    In other words, it defies logic and common sense. ;)

    Comment by Jim — March 12, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

  78. Yeah, I get the work ethic issues and defensive issues. But the production has been there. And he’s way to young, and way to talented to not be in the top 100. Probably should be nearer to top 50.

    Comment by Preston — March 12, 2012 @ 8:40 pm

  79. This list is littered with relievers. We just don’t know who they are yet.

    Comment by Preston — March 12, 2012 @ 8:44 pm

  80. No Gary Sanchez? What don’t you like about him, Marc?

    Comment by Travis G — March 12, 2012 @ 10:37 pm

  81. Curious as well. Leaving him off seems pretty hard to justify by looking at numbers, age, etc., and I know scouting reports on his bat have been very impressive. There are definitely maturity/defense issues, but the kid is 18, and has time to iron those out. He actually had a slightly higher wOBA and wRC+ this year (in what was largely considered to be a down year) than #29 Bogaerts, who I think is a great prospect but likely not a shortstop long term.

    Comment by Eric — March 12, 2012 @ 10:57 pm

  82. Exactly, 18 year olds with 10.5% walk rates and massive power don’t really grow on trees.

    Montero had the same number of homeruns in Charleston as Sanchez did this year.

    …in 50 more games.

    Comment by YanksFanInBeantown — March 12, 2012 @ 11:20 pm

  83. I’d say this is a case of reading too much into a preposition. Best Prospects for 2012 does not mean ” best prospects to deliver Results in the Major Leagues during the 2012 season.”

    There’s no reason why it should.

    Comment by Bookbook — March 12, 2012 @ 11:25 pm

  84. As I mentioned in the chat, Bell was a hard player to rank for a variety of reasons… when I originally ranked the Pirates system a few years ago I made a poor choice in ranking Bell ahead of Taillon and corrected that in the Top 100.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 11:45 pm

  85. Wilin Rosario came in at 108… lower than some, for sure, and time will tell if I was too conservative or not.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 11:49 pm

  86. Olt may be the one ranking I will end up regretting the most.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 11:50 pm

  87. Gary Sanchez is a good player to really zoom up these charts next year if he handles high-A ball well. The defensive questions (not as many as Montero) and maturity issues hurt him…

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 11:51 pm

  88. I talk to other baseball people (scouts, front office, etc), watch video and also read reports… then form my own opinions.

    Comment by Marc Hulet — March 12, 2012 @ 11:53 pm

  89. Alonso, Grandal, Gyorko, Darnell, Liriano, Boxberger, Kelly, Erlin, Spangerberg, Wieland will all see the majors soon.

    The Padres are similar to the Royals from 2011 (graduated 11 prospects). Given that they play in Petco, I’m more inclined to target Boxberger, Erlin and Kelly in my leagues.

    A lot of people complain that RP don’t show up on this list, but if you played in a league with Holds or Saves+Holds, Reed and Boxberger would be huge targets for savvy owners.

    Comment by Eric — March 13, 2012 @ 12:31 am

  90. By far the most bullish of anyone I’ve seen on Familia. I’m not a big prospect hobbyist but other lists had other similar profile guys ranked ahead of him despite worse control and being a year or two older at AA.

    Comment by Franco — March 13, 2012 @ 1:12 am

  91. After the Mets trade, Wheeler purposely went back to the inverted W throwing style and all of a sudden became a strike throwing machine with crazy movement. He could blow out his arm or the Mets might squash it, but the potential is easily there for a top rotation guy if you’re feeling risky.

    Comment by Franco — March 13, 2012 @ 1:18 am

  92. @Russell Brown

    Except for the fact that Darvish ALSO dominated his league at age 20. 1.82 ERA, .828 WHIP and won the league MVP award. Sorry, but your analogy doesn’t stand up. Darvish hasn’t been able to move up a level till now, so all he has been able to do is continue dominating his league and putting up better numbers each season. Darvish was regarded as being on a similar talent level with Felix Hernandez as a teenager.

    While spring training doesn’t mean much, you can use it to evaluate stuff. Every scout, media expert that watched his first outing put plus plus on both his fastball and slider (a few have put an 80 grade on his slider). Every single one of his pitches, fastball (4 variants), slider, curve and changeup grade out above average. He commands them all with the same action.

    He’s 6’5 with clean, repeatable mechanics. Previous Japanese failures should not be enough to simply downgrade his talent. There are very few pitchers in MLB that have a repertoire like that. Yet apparently the history with Jap pitchers is enough for most publications to put a #2 ceiling on him, which is ridiculous. Based purely on stuff, he would easily rank in the top 10 in the league, perhaps higher.

    It remains to be seen whether he can make the transition seamlessly, but that also remains a risk with almost every prospect on this list. To a lesser extent perhaps, but there’s still a risk. Darvish’s talent shouldn’t be downgraded because of a higher level of risk though.

    Comment by Jason — March 13, 2012 @ 2:32 am

  93. >Zack Wheeler, RHP, New York NL

    A future #5 starter is the 17th best prospect in baseball?

    Comment by PrinceOfBeers — March 13, 2012 @ 5:04 am

  94. Jonathan Schoop is no longer a prospect; he is already World Champion :D

    Comment by cktai — March 13, 2012 @ 7:26 am

  95. Trying to reply to Eric, but the site won’t let me. The difference between the Padres and the Royals last year is the lack of truly elite prospects in the Padres farm. Last year, Hosmer, Moustakas and Myers were all top 20 guys. The Padres have nobody at that level.

    Comment by Simon — March 13, 2012 @ 7:32 am

  96. AJ Burnett has top 10 stuff in the league so you can take that argument right out of here. All we heard about Dice K was his unlimited repertoire which included never before seen pitches. Every word you just said was heaped upon DiceK. And the comparison to other Jap pitchers is a valid concern because they all shared common flaws which appear to be connected to the style of pitching that is prevalent over there. Like a reluctance to pitching inside and pitching away from contact too often. The correlation to success between the two track records greatly favors JT at this point. I think Yu will be very good but to pretend it wasn’t a huge risk of a signing is naive. He could easily cripple that rotation much like Dice K did Bostons the last two years.

    Comment by Russell Brown — March 13, 2012 @ 9:54 am

  97. 3B is considered a more important position then CF? Can’t recall ever hearing that before…

    Comment by James P — March 13, 2012 @ 10:25 am

  98. Will – No, it isn’t a bad comparison at all. He has plus fielding with a strong arm, similar BB% and K% to Jones, more power than Jackson but less than Jones, steals bases better than Jones, but maybe not quite as well as Jackson. Combined, he looks like a 2.5-3.5 WAR OF by age 25 or 26. That’s not elite, but it’s a Top 100 prospect.

    Comment by TKay — March 13, 2012 @ 2:21 pm

  99. #5 starter? never seen him projected that low before.

    Comment by Bill — March 13, 2012 @ 3:44 pm

  100. Kind of a pointless comment, but I only counted seven Atlanta prospects.

    Comment by Dr. Rockzo — March 13, 2012 @ 7:00 pm

  101. I found it interesting my Jays were all grouped from 36-66, it is satisfying to be above 66, but a little disheartening to have none over 36. I find D’Arnaud to be an interesting ranking, Law had him at 6!

    I think Marsinick is really going to breakout even further than he already has and be a top 30 guy next year. (BP had him as the #2 Jays Spec)

    Comment by Matty Brown — March 14, 2012 @ 6:22 am

  102. Yeah except for the fact that Darvish is 6’5 220 lbs, and is ten times the athlete Dice K ever was. In running and defensive drills in ST, Darvish is light years better than pretty much every Texas pitcher. Despite being bigger than everyone he’s the quickest and most agile. He is in superb physical condition. Dice K was and is a chunky assed blob.

    Also Dice K never had a plus plus fastball. The fastball is what you live off in MLB. Darvish throws mid 90′s heat with plus movement and life. That fact alone is a massive difference in favor of Darvish, no matter how good the rest of the off speed stuff is.

    Otherwise I agree. Stuff doesn’t mean everything. Darvish still has to prove he can transition. But in your comp, so does Teheren. Darvish has better stuff, and also had better stuff at 20. Darvish should be right up just behind Matt Moore on this list (talking pitchers only). Because none of them are really proven, so all you can really rank them on is stuff.

    Comment by Jason — March 14, 2012 @ 6:32 am

  103. Just curious, what makes Eddie Rosario worthy of the top 70, when Kolten Wong doesn’t make the top 100?

    Comment by Power_Barski — March 14, 2012 @ 8:05 pm

  104. accidentally posted before finishing

    Anyway, Wong is just a year older, and posted a sexy 156 wRC at A-level affiliate Quad City. He certainly hasn’t shown Rosario’s pop, but he’s a much more polished hitter: 9.5BB%/10.8K% for Wong in his first year of pro baseball, compared to 9.1%/20.1% for Rosario in his second at rookie level. And I’d say it’s much more likely Wong sticks (and plays better defense) at 2nd than Rosario.

    ok i stopped caring

    I’d say it’s more likely Wong sticks (and plays better defense) at 2nd than Rosario does, he’s a much more disciplined hitter (similar BB% but Wong’s K% at Quad City was 10.8, while Rosario’s was 20.1 at Elizabethton)

    Comment by Power_Barski — March 14, 2012 @ 8:29 pm

  105. This post is full of win.

    Both of those players are way too high IMO. I get that this list can be considered arbitrary and a player ranked a few spots ahead of others doesn’t really say that much…

    However, Bradley and Wheeler both ahead of Taijuan Walker? Bradley has no pro experience and his upside is on par with Walker who dominated in his first year of pro ball. And Wheeler? Please… #17 is wishful thinking at best. He is currently not a better prospect than Walker and his ceiling is not as high.

    That being said, like everyone else I only focus on what irks me and ignore the fact that this is as solid a top prospect list as there is. Good work, Marc.

    Comment by the jerk — March 16, 2012 @ 5:27 pm

  106. no chris parmelee??? the great one?

    Comment by charis — March 29, 2012 @ 1:42 am

  107. I feel like Matt Adams should have jumped on and up this list once pujols moved. He can hit 25-30 hr with .300avg for a decade in the majors.

    Comment by bourne — April 7, 2012 @ 9:13 am

  108. Alex Cobb?

    Comment by Tom K — April 7, 2012 @ 9:28 am

  109. Or maybe the 17th best prospect in baseball projects as something more than a #5 starter. Just a thought.

    Comment by Mike — April 27, 2012 @ 1:42 pm

  110. Wil Myers has catcher eligibility on yahoo. I am guessing he will never play catcher ever again?

    Comment by Daniel — July 11, 2012 @ 8:07 pm

  111. comment

    Comment by John — August 5, 2012 @ 4:22 am

  112. a little confused how tyler thornburg comes in #2 for brewers but doesnt crack top100 and you have wily peralta #88 and hes brewers #3 just seems a little backwards

    Comment by james — August 29, 2012 @ 6:16 pm

  113. your joking right? wheeler has been spectacular every step of the way and in 2012 quite clearly proved why hes gonna be not only a great SP but the ACE of a championship team for years and years to come

    Comment by james — August 29, 2012 @ 6:18 pm

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