Top 10s Revisited: AL East

With clubs set to infuse more talent into their systems next week, and with being two months into the minor league season, it’s a great time to take a quick look at how the Top 10 prospects are doing in each system. Today, we’ll take a look at the American League East.

*The Top 10 lists originally appeared in FanGraphs’ Second Opinion fantasy guide published in March.

Tampa Bay Rays

Top prospect Jennings has been slowed by injuries but he appears to be healthy now but he’s struggled with the bat. The same can be said for Beckham, who hit just .145 in April but is hitting .366 in his last 10 games. While the hitters have struggled so far this year, most of the Top 10 pitchers have seen their values increase, including Hellickson, Davis, Barnese, and Colome. Moore, a lefty, has struggled mightily against left-handed hitters (.348 average). Overall, the top prospects in the system are having a successful 2010 season.

New York Yankees

Top prospect Montero has struggled in triple-A but no one is really worried given the level of competition and his age (20). The emergence of fellow catching prospect Romine one level below Montero has also helped to ease any concerns. If the top prospect does have to move away from catching, a continued strong showing from Romine will make the move more palatable. Heathcott, Sanchez, and De Leon have yet to start their seasons. Murphy was just recently assigned to low-A ball after opening the year in extended spring training.

Boston Red Sox

The club’s Top 10 list was dealt a big blow with the serious health concerns with both Westmoreland and Tazawa. Kelly has done OK in double-A but he’s still very young in terms of pitching. Anderson has regained much of his prospect status this season after a lousy ’09. A couple of outfielders – Kalish and Fuentes – are quickly improving their value with strong starts to the year.

Toronto Blue Jays

The system is certainly benefiting from the addition of Wallace, Drabek, and d’Arnaud. All three were acquired during last off-season’s trade of Roy ‘Mr. Perfect’ Halladay. d’Arnaud has battled back problems but he’s impressed people within the organization with both his offense and his leadership on the field. Two players have yet to begin their 2010 seasons: Sierra (leg stress fracture) and Marisnick (extended spring).

Baltimore Orioles

Matusz has struggled a bit in the Majors this season but he’s also shown some flashes of brilliance. Erbe, Snyder, and Mickolio have disappointed but Arrieta and Britton are certainly headed in the right direction. Bell had a slow start at triple-A but he seems to be pulling himself out of the hole.

Up Next: The NL East




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Marc Hulet has been writing at FanGraphs since 2008. His work focuses on prospects, depth charts and fantasy. Follow him on Twitter @marchulet.


23 Responses to “Top 10s Revisited: AL East”

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  1. DevilsAdvocate says:

    I’d like to suggest that the graphic line-item for each player be modified to make it read better visually. Shift some of the arrows over so that they read better in a column; the up arrows stay where they are, the sideways arrows move one space to the right, and the down arrows move two spaces to the right. And/or perhaps use a different color for the different types of arrows – green for up, red for down, blue for sideways.

    Thanks for the update – looking forward to the NL.

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  2. Reuben says:

    Have any performances so far greatly shifted ETA from the original post(s)?

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  3. John DiFool says:

    Why does Ryan Kalish have a down arrow next to his name, when he just went 7/9 with 2 HRs, 1 double, a triple, 6 RBIs and 4 runs over the weekend, and is now at a 920 OPS? Or do the arrows not mean what I think they mean?

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    • Kevin S. says:

      I would assume the arrows mean more than just the previous handful of games.

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      • wobatus says:

        1) it looks up (maybe fixed), and
        2) the .920 OPS is for the year, not just the last few games.

        Actually, he’s now at .931 OPS.

        .293/.404/.527 triple slash line, with 28 walks and only 21 strike-ous in 150 at-bats, 13 stolen bases and only caught once. The guy is really fulfiliing his promise.

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    • Judy says:

      Looks up to me. Maybe it was a mistake and was fixed?

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  4. Peter says:

    Was Adeiny Hechevarria considered in the Jays rankings and was simply not part of the top 10?

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  5. ryan says:

    no hetch was signed after the list was made
    I would put hetch 2nd or 3rd, and bump sierra
    Also alvarez? how is his arrow horizontal,
    ERA under 2.5 and thats after getting shelled his last outing for 6 runs
    He is only 20 and clearly needs a promotion
    other than that good to see the halladay package all improving value since the trade

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  6. Michael says:

    gotta agree with Ryan here. Alvarez has absolutely shredded the competition so far this season, his numbers are videogame-esque if you subtract his last start especially. something like 8 home runs allowed in 245 innings including 4 in his last start. he could be something…

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    • Temo says:

      Eh, his peripherals are slightly worse this year compared to last, but he’s in a higher league. Horizontal arrow makes sense to me.

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      • Mark says:

        If you look at Alvarez’ splits by month you’ll notice that as the year went on the K/9 went up substantially. Started @ 5.15 in April, and by August had jumped to 9.22 K/9 (SSS). He’s doing the same thing this year. The K/9 was 5.04 in April and now 6.04 in May.

        To me that kind of progression is more important than just looking at the overall K/9. Shows he’s improving which is always good to see in a prospect.

        I also thought Jenkins has been doing a good job. Solid K rate, great control, and a 50%+ GB rate.

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      • Mark says:

        Sorry that should say September not August.

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  7. Marc Hulet says:

    Alvarez is a fav of mine… his numbers are good but his strikeout rate is lowish, he’s still learning how to pitch and his secondary pitches are raw; I hummed and hawed about giving him an up arrow.

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  8. Zach says:

    No Tillman?

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  9. bberdl20 says:

    Has Michael Bowden fallen that far? I am amazed at the lack of respect he receives. Do 16 poor big league innings mean more than 570+ innings of above average production at age appropriate levels in the minors? That final step from AAA to the big leagues is often the toughest. I think too many players who do well in A ball are ranked ahead of guys who have proven their mettle against better players and then hit a rough patch.

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  10. Eric M. Van says:

    I think the fact that Anthony Rizzo is already in AA at his age (two years younger than Lars) and has done the one thing he needed to do (improved his HR / Contact, by 68%) is enough to earn him an up arrow.

    OTOH, Fuentes is at .269 / .317 / .407 and needs his perfect 16 for 16 stealing just to get a sideways.

    Kalish has had terrible luck on BABIP and is still at .293 / .404 / .527 (with 13 SB, 1 CS); ml splits has his luck-adjusted line at something like .353 / .454 / .600. I think he may be the best prospect in the system.

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    • E Dub says:

      Yeah, Rizzo jumped out to me too. There’s been a short term decline in his walk rate compared to Salem, but as you say, he’s a 20-year-old who is more than holding his own in Double-A. Maybe if you gave some context for each arrow designation, Marc?

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  11. Ryan says:

    Just to clarify, this isn’t re-ranking guys right, it is just the original rankings with a comment on each guys performance?

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  12. pft says:

    Nice to see Anderson back on track for the Red Sox. Him and Kalish could be MLB ready in 2011.

    The Taiwan terror is also doing well in double A, not much power but good defense in CF, speed (terrible CS rate) and a decent 384 OBP. He may be an option in 2012 if they are able to sacrifice some offense for CF defense and if Fuentes does not develop as fast as expected.

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