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Trade Deadline Prospects Ranked, Part 5

Posted By Marc Hulet On August 7, 2009 @ 1:00 pm In Minor Leagues | 45 Comments

At the expiration of the Major League Baseball trading deadline, 35 prospects had changed hands (beginning July 19 with Milwaukee’s acquisition of Felipe Lopez). Over the next week, FanGraphs will take a look at each prospect, while also ranking them individually in value from 35 down to one. Players such as Justin Masterson, Clayton Richard, Kevin Hart, and Jeff Clement were not considered in this list because they have expired their rookie eligibility. However, they can still technically be considered “prospects” because they are young and have yet to establish themselves at the MLB level.

The week-long series wraps up today with the top seven prospects who moved at the trade deadline. We’ve already taken a look at 28 prospects:
35-29 on Monday
28-22 on Tuesday
21-15 on Wednesday
14-8 on Thursday

So let’s get to it and see who the biggest prospect names were.

  • 7. Carlos Carrasco, RHP
    From Philadelphia to Cleveland

    Value-wise, Carrasco peaked as a prospect mid-way through the 2007 season. The right-hander stopped trusting his stuff when he struggled after being promoted to double-A. His formerly plus curveball has regressed to the point where it is an average pitch for him. Carrasco now relies mostly on a low-90s fastball that can touch 95-96 mph and a changeup. Prior to the trade, the Venezuelan native allowed 118 hits in 114.2 innings of work. He had a solid walk rate of 2.98 BB/9 and a good strikeout rate at 8.79 K/9. Carrasco has won both his starts since he was traded to Cleveland, but he’s been far from dominant by allowing nine runs on 13 hits and three walks in 13 innings. With a little more aggression, and if he can regain his plus breaking ball, Carrasco could realize his potential as a No. 2 starter.

  • 6. Tim Alderson, RHP
    From San Francisco to Pittsburgh

    Alderson and Madison Bumgarner have been linked together since both pitchers were nabbed out of high school by the Giants in the first round of the 2007 draft. That changed when Alderson was flipped to Pittsburgh for veteran second baseman Freddy Sanchez. The right-hander has amazing control for his age and experience level, having risen to double-A at the age of 20. The 6’6” 215 lbs hurler has an unusual delivery. A lot has been made about his reduction in velocity, but Alderson takes some zip off his fastball to create more movement and to induce a higher number of ground balls. He’s given up his fair share of hits this season with 114 allowed in 104.1 innings, but he’s always around the strike zone and doesn’t walk anyone (1.73 BB/9). Along with his fastball that sits in the upper-80s and can touch 92 mph, the hurler also has a plus curveball and a changeup. Alderson could be in the Pirates rotation within a year.

  • 5. Jason Knapp, RHP
    From Philadelphia to Cleveland

    The Phillies organization knew Knapp was promising (The club drafted him in the second round out of a New Jersey high school in 2008) but he showed solid results sooner than expected. The Indians were so happy to have the chance to acquire him that the organization took him in the trade even though he was on the disabled list with shoulder fatigue. If Knapp cannot hold up to the rigors of pitching as a starter, he could become a dominating closer with a fastball that creeps up near 100 mph. He also has a power slider and a good changeup. This season in low-A, Knapp allowed 63 hits in 85.1 innings of work, while also posting a walk rate of 4.11 BB/9 and a strikeout rate of 11.71 K/9.

  • 4. Nick Hagadone, LHP
    From Boston to Cleveland

    Like Knapp, Hagadone’s potential is just too good to ignore even though there are health questions after he underwent Tommy John surgery and missed almost all of the 2008 season. The hard-throwing southpaw has shown good stuff in low-A ball this season with an impressive ground-ball rate of 57.6%. Hagadone has allowed just 16 hits in 28 innings of work this year, while also posting a walk rate of 5.04 BB/9 and a strikeout rate of 11.52 K/9. The former supplemental first round draft pick’s control was not a strength prior to the surgery, so it could take a little while before it improves enough to pitch successfully in the upper minors and Majors. Hagadone, 23, has the potential to be a No. 2 starter but the injury has definitely slowed down his ascent through the minors.

  • 3. Josh Bell, 3B
    From Los Angeles NL to Baltimore

    Prior to the 2009 season, Bell’s pro career could have been categorized as “promising” but he had yet to put everything together. The former fourth round pick out of a Florida high school has improved by leaps and bounds this season despite making the big jump from high-A to double-A. He also missed more than half of the year in 2008 due to injuries. On the ’09 season, Bell is currently hitting .296/.386/.494 with 11 homers in 334 at-bats. The 22-year-old has also banged out 30 doubles. Bell’s approach at the plate has certainly improved. After averaging a walk rate of about 8.6 BB% in his first two seasons, that number has improved to about 13.6 BB% in the past two years. His strikeout rate is also down almost 9% over 2008 (29.9 to 21.0 K%). If the Orioles club can find a one-year stopgap for the hot corner in 2010, Bell should be ready to play full-time at the MLB level in 2011.

  • 2. Aaron Poreda, LHP
    From Chicago AL to San Diego

    Poreda is the most advanced power pitcher on this list, although his secondary pitches do not show as much potential as Hagadone’s. The 6’6” 240 lbs left-hander can touch 100 mph on his fastball and he’s done a better job of keeping the ball down in the zone to induce ground-ball outs. The trade certainly helps Poreda’s value, as he moves from one of the best hitter’s parks in the Majors to the best pitcher’s park. For now, though, he’ll spend time in triple-A. Poreda began the season in double-A where he allowed 47 hits in 64.1 innings of work. He posted a walk rate of 4.90 BB/9 and a strikeout rate of 9.65 K/9. The southpaw also worked 11 innings for Chicago and allowed nine hits and eight walks to go along with 12 strikeouts.

  • 1. Brett Wallace, 3B
    From St. Louis to Oakland

    The 13th overall selection in the 2008 draft, Wallace checks in as the No. 1 prospect traded at the deadline in 2009. The first baseman (let’s be honest, he’s not a third baseman) has a career line of .302/.376/.453 in 821 pro at-bats. The left-handed hitter projects to hit for both power and average, although his in-game power has not fully developed yet (.176 ISO in ’09). Prior to the trade, he was hitting .293/.346/.423 with six homers and 11 doubles in 222 at-bats. Wallace’s walk rate at triple-A (6.1 BB%) is almost half of what it was in double-A. He opened up the season with 32 games in double-A. Wallace, 22, has been promoted aggressively through the minor leagues, so that may be tempering his numbers a bit (He appeared in just 41 games below double-A). In his prime, he should hit .300 with 20-25 homers. Defensively, Wallace has good hands and handles everything he gets to at third base. His range is poor, though, and his actions are not the smoothest. He should be an average to slightly-above-average first baseman.


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