At the end of last week, polite and Canadian and polite Marc Hulet published his 2014 organizational prospect list for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
It goes without saying that, in composing such a list, Hulet has considered the overall future value those prospects might be expected to provide either to the D-backs or whatever other organizations to which they might someday belong.
What this brief post concerns isn’t overall future value, at all, but rather such value as the prospects from Hulet’s list might provide were they to play, more or less, a full major-league season in 2014.
Steamer Projections: Arizona Batting Prospects
Below are the current 2014 projections for select Arizona batting prospects. All projections have been prorated to 550 plate appearances (and 450 for catchers) for sake of uniformity. Defensive figures (denoted by Def) account both for positional adjustment and UZR, and are presented relative to league average. Note that, in many cases, defensive value has been calculated entirely by positional adjustment based on the relevant player’s minor-league defensive starts in 2013. Prospects are listed in order of projected WAR. The symbol # denotes the relevant prospect’s ranking on Hulet’s list. Figures might diverge slightly (although not signficantly) from those which appear on player pages.
Steamer Projections: Arizona Pitching Prospects
Below are the 2014 projections for select Arizona pitching prospects. Projections for starting pitchers have been prorated to 150 innings; for relievers, to 50 innings. Prospects are listed in order of projected WAR. The symbol # denotes the relevant prospect’s ranking on Hulet’s list. Figures might diverge slightly (although not signficantly) from those which appear on player pages.
• Those who deal in capital-T Truth will be compelled to admit that both Chris Owings and Matt Davidson spent the majority of 2013 at the Triple-A level and then also made their respective major-league debuts towards the end of that same season. That same demographic will also observe that Owings and Davidson are regarded by Steamer as very possibly something like major-league average players — the former benefiting from decent offense and the shortstop positional adjustment; the latter, from better offense and still very satisfactory defensive value.
• There’s no truth to the rumor that Arizona ownership has lobbied commissioner Bud Selig to add an additional third base to the regulation baseball diamond, thereby allowing the D-backs to more readily deploy the most ready of their prospects.
• Young and talented and hard-throwing Archie Bradley is the top prospect in the Arizona system, according to Marc Hulet, but it would appear as though less young and still right-handed Matt Stites, acquired by the D-backs in the trade that sent Ian Kennedy to San Diego, is the pitching prospect most poised to provide value in 2014. Stites recorded strikeout and walk rates of 25.3% and 4.0%, respectively, in 52.0 innings for Double-A San Antonio.