Tag Archive | "Prospects"

International Players – MLB Top 100 Prospects List, Nos 1-10


We have reached the final part of our 10 part segments on breaking down the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. We have seen a lot of talent so far, but these guys are at the top of the heap and will be interesting to watch for years to come. So without further ado.

No. 10 Ozzie Albies, 2B/Atlanta Braves – Albies is one prospect that many Braves fans are both high on and will defend at every move. The speedy infielder who could play short or second will most likely end up paired with another Top 10 prospect in Dansby Swanson up the middle for Atlanta. He just turned 20 where he will most likely spend the season at AAA Gwinnett where he struggled a bit last year. He tore up AA at only 19. While the Braves traded for Brandon Phillips to hold down second base, the veteran is really holding down the spot until Albies is ready for the big leagues, so there is no need to rush him this season. Albies ranked no. 12 in 2016.

No. 7 Victor Robles, OF/Washington Nationals – Signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2013, Robles spent the 2016 season split between the South Atlantic League and the Carolina League. He possesses great speed and even stole 37 bases last season but is still learning the art of the stolen base after getting caught 14 times. He might be a few years away from the big leagues, but he could be a franchise type player. However, he won’t turn 20 until May, so he has to be given time to learn. Robles ranked no. 10 in 2016.

No. 5 Amed Rosario, SS/New York Mets – The Top 10 of the list is full of shortstops with Dominican Rosario being one of the brightest. He will play this season at just 21, and he is the future of the Mets at short, but there is no need to rush him to the big leagues. However, if he continues to impress he may force their hands. He spent half of last season at AA Binghamton impressing big time. He hit .341 with a .392 OBP in 54 games. While he might not turn out to be a 30+ home run hitter at the big league level, he plays above average defense and hits with contact and extra-base power. Rosario ranked no. 11 in 2016.

No. 3 Gleyber Torres, SS/New York Yankees – Torres is the top rated shortstop prospect in the game, and he will play the 2017 season at just 20-years old. Signed out of Venezuela in 2013, Torres was the biggest prize for the Yankees in the Aroldis Chapman deal. He is advanced at the plate and could turn into a 20+ homer type shortstop. There is no need to rush him to the big leagues with Didi Gregorius holding down the spot in New York. Torres looks to be the centerpiece of the Yankees for years to come though when he is ready. Torres ranked no. 17 in 2016.

No. 2 Yoan Moncada, 2B/Chicago White Sox – Last season’s no. 1, Moncada is just 21-years old. The switch-hitting infielder out of Cuba has lived up to his big price tag to sign, $63 million by Boston. The big piece for the White Sox in the Chris Sale deal, Moncada could pair quite well with fellow youngster Tim Anderson up the middle in Chicago. He has the tools to be an impact player at the big league level with speed, power, and the ability to hit for average. He may not start off in Chicago to begin the season, but look for him to be there at some point this summer.

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 11-20
International Players – No. 21-30
International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

International Players - MLB Top 100 Prospects List

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 11-20


Today we have the penultimate step on our list of international players in the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. So here we go with nos. 11-20.

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 21-30
International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 20 Francis Martes, RHP/Houston Astros – Martes, out of the Dominican Republic, is a hard throwing righty who had a solid year in 2016 at Double-A Corpus Christi. he threw 125.1 innings allowing just 104 hits and striking out 9.4 per 9. He has a plus fastball that sits between 93-96, touching 98 at times. It is his secondary pitches that still need polishing, and he will need to work on his command. While he struck out more than one hitter per inning, he also walked 3.4 per 9 which is way too high to be an effective front line starter at the big league level.

No. 17 Rafael Devers, 3B/Boston Red Sox – Devers, out of the Dominican Republic, is just a 20-year old with power to all fields. Last season he played for Salem in High-A ball where he showed some power (32 doubles and 11 home runs) but more than anything he bounced back after a slow start to finish strong. Whether or not he stays at third will remain to be seen as he continues to grow as a player with a possible shift across the diamond to first.

No. 13 Eloy Jimenez, OF/Chicago Cubs – Jimenez, who hails from the Dominican Republic, will be just 20 this season. Last year he spent the entire season in Single-A ball with South Bend in the Midwest League. There he hit .329 with 14 home runs winning the leagues MVP award. He has plus power, even drawing comparisons to Giancarlo Stanton by some. He spent most of his time in left last season, but has the arm for right as he continues to improve his defense.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 21-30


We move another step closer to the Top 10 in the MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players. Today we look at nos. 21-30

If you missed the first segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 31-40
International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 25 Anderson Espinoza, RHP/San Diego Padres – Espinoza signed for just under $2 million. This was a new record for a prospect out of Venezuela. He impressed last season, which was his first full season in A-ball. He split time between two leagues after being apart of the trade that sent Drew Pomeranz to Boston, where Espinoza was drafted. A power right arm that sits between 94-97, Espinoza has to improve on his secondary pitches though he will pitch this upcoming season at just 19-years old.

No. 23 Manuel Margot, OF/San Diego Padres – Margot is another former Red Sox farmhand to be traded to San Diego. This time it was for Craig Kimbrel. Margot is out of the Dominican Republic and was named a Pacific Coast League All-Star in 2016 before making his MLB debut in San Diego in September. He has shown great speed. Last year he stole 30 bases and hit 12 triples in AAA. With that speed he will be able to patrol centerfield in San Diego with the possibility of that coming as soon as 2017.

No. 21 Willy Adames, SS/Tampa Bay Rays – Adames worked his way to Double-A ball at just the age of 20. The Dominican prospect was named a Southern League All-Star in 2016 and played in the annual All-Star Futures Game for the World Team.  Last season in Montgomery Adames showed a little pop with 11 home runs, 31 doubles, and 6 triples. Many feel he has the makeup for a middle of the order shortstop at an All-Star-caliber. He looks to contribute to the big league club in 2018.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players

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MLB Top 100 Prospects List International Players – Nos. 31-40


Today we move closer to the top 10 of the MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players. Last time we took a look at nos. 41-50, and today go through 31-40.

If you missed the first six segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 41-50
International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 40 Francisco Mejia, C/Cleveland Indians – The 21-year old out of the Dominican Republic has a bright future ahead of him. Last season he split time between the Single-A Midwest League and the High-A Carolina League. He hit well in both leagues. He had a 50-game hitting streak that stretched over two leagues. The switch-hitting catcher has a strong arm from behind the plate. While he might need another year of seasoning in the minors, he could compete for a spot in the big leagues as early as 2018. He ranked no. 85 on the 2016 list.

No. 34 Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B/Toronto Blue Jays – Born in Canada to future hall of famer Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. is only 17-years old and already ranks at the no. 3 third base prospect in the game. Guerrero posses speed (stole 15 bases in 62 games in 2016), power (hit 8 home runs and 12 doubles), and shows plate discipline having almost as many walks (33) as strikeouts (35). He spent all of the 2016 season with Bluefield in the Appalachian League. It will remain to be seen if he can stay at third base or possibly move to first or the outfield.

No. 33 Jose De Leon, RHP/Tampa Bay Rays – The 24th Round pick in 2013 struggled a bit in his pro debut, but the Puerto Rico native found his strike in 2014 in the Rookie-level Pioneer League. He tore up AAA last season before getting the call from the Los Angeles Dodgers making his MLB debut. In AAA he struck out 11.6 per 9. That did not translate over to his MLB debut, but the righty has a plus fastball that can top out at 96. He projects to be a mid-rotation starter which is why the Rays traded for him in January where he might get a shot at the rotation this spring. He will also be part of the designated pitcher pool for Puerto Rico in the upcoming World Baseball Classic.

No. 32 Kevin Maitan, SS/Atlanta Braves – The 17-year old from Venezuela has not played a game yet in the Braves farm system, but he is already being heralded as the next big thing bout of Venezuela. With a plus arm, the switch-hitter is already being compared to Miguel Sano. He has pop from both sides of the plate and excellent range. Some think he might move off shortstop eventually with a move to third base. If that does happen, he should make the transition easily when it comes to defense.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List international players

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 41-50


We are halfway through our list of the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List. Today we start the final 50 by taking a look at nos. 41-50.

If you missed the first five  segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 51-60
International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 50 Yadier Alvarez, RHP/Los Angeles Dodgers – Alvarez, who hails from Cuba, signed for a $16 million bonus in 2015. The hard throwing righty peaks in triple digits with his fastball while sitting between 94-97. Last season, his first in the US, he struck out 12.3 per 9 innings. He pitched well in his call up to A-ball in the Midwest League. He is still only 20 but is working on commanding his great fastball. While he may still be a few years away from the Dodgers rotation, he is one to really keep an eye on because he may be electric when he arrives.

No. 47 Jorge Mateo, SS, 2B/New York Yankees – Mateo comes out of the Dominican Republic and will be just 21 for half of this season. Last season he played 113 games in the Florida State League (A+) and showed some of his tools. He stole 36 bases, a year after swiping 82. He has the speed, although he might still need to learn the art of stealing. With his raw power, which might project out to about 15 home runs a year, he has enough tools to make him an exciting player to watch. With the arrival of Gleyber Torres from the Aroldis Chapman trade, Mateo might be forced into a second base only role.

No. 46 Reynaldo Lopez, RHP/Chicago Whitesox – Lopez comes out of the Dominican Republic and since 2014 has really proven himself in the Washington Nationals system before moving to Chicago in the Adam Eaton deal this winter. Lopez made his MLB debut his past season getting into 11 games at the big league level, including 6 starts. The hard thrower posted a 4.91 ERA over 44.0 innings and struck out 8.6 per 9. He has a power fastball, a solid curve, and a workable change but at times can struggle with control.

MLB Top 100 Prospects List

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 51-60


Today we continue our look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List for 2017. We have gone through segments look at nos. 61-100 and today we look at 51-60.

If you missed the first four segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 61-70
International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 56 Yohander Mendez, LHP/Texas Rangers – Mendez hails from Venezuela where he was signed as a free agent in 2011. The 22-year old is one of the Rangers top prospects and even made his Major League debut last September pitching in 2 games out of the bullpen. Last season was a year of moves for Mendez. He started out in High-A ball and moved his way through AA, AAA, and then to the big league club. While he might not have the breaking stuff of some, his change up is quite good. Add that to his sinking low to mid-90s fastball and he could be a solid starter for years to come. Maybe not ace material, but could be a solid no. 3 starter for a long time. It remains to be seen where he will start the 2017 season, but he should contribute to the big league club very soon. This is his second straight year at no. 56 on the list.

No. 55 Leody Taveras, OF/Texas Rangers – Taveras is just 18 having played his first season at 17 last year. A legitimate 5-tool center fielder, he showed his speed last season in the Arizona League (Rookie) stealing 11 bases in just 33 games. He played at 3 different levels last year but struggled a bit at Spokane. He still has some things to learn and he is still filling out since he is still so young, but he could be a force to reckon with in the coming years if he lives up to his potential. He will definitely be one to watch as the years progress. On a side note, he is the cousin of former big league Willy Taveras.

No. 54 David Paulino, RHP/Houston Astros – The Astros took Paulino in a trade even though he was going to miss the entire next season with Tommy John surgery. It might turn out to be a great move. Paulino comes out of the Dominican Republic and at 6’7″ he has the power (tops out at 98) to go with a power curveball. He spent most of his 2016 season at AA Corpus Christi, but threw a few starts at AA Fresno before getting the call to the big leagues. He has started and finished games in the same season, but has never pitched 100 innings in a season. Last year was his high at 97 innings pitched, so health is a concern moving forward. Last season Paulino checked in at no. 70 on the list.

No. 52 Franklin Barreto, SS,2B/Oakland Athletics – Barreto was one of the key pieces in the deal that sent Josh Donaldson from Oakland to Toronto. The 20-year old middle infielder out of Venezuela has impressed at every level. He spent most of 2016 at AA Midland for Oakland where he played 119 games hitting .281 with 25 doubles, 10 home runs, and 30 stolen bases. The tools are there, but Barreto would benefit from more time in the minors to hone in on some skills like basestealing. He was thrown out 15 times last year at AA. He had a brief, but impressive, stint at AAA Nashville last year. And with him being blocked at the big league level by both Marcus Semien and Chand Pinder, look for him to gain some more experience at AAA next year. In 2016, Barreto was no. 43 on the list.

MLB Top 100 Prospects

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 61-70


Continuing our look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List, today we will look at nos. 61-70 as we get closer to the top 10 on the list.

f you missed the first three segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 71-80
International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 65 Isan Diaz, SS,2B/Milwaukee Brewers – Diaz, who hails from Puerto Rico, is a middle infielder who played in the Midwest League in 2016 (A-ball). He was the MVP of the Pioneer League in 2015 as a 19-year old after being lured away from Vanderbilt. He was drafted by Arizona in the 2nd Round of the MLB Draft in 2014 then traded to Milwaukee in the deal that sent Juan Segura to Arizona. Diaz possesses raw power showing that off last year by hitting 20 home runs. Many scouts profile him as a second baseman at the big league level where he could be a power hitting middle infielder. However, he is a few years away from having any impact for the big league club. He clocked in at no. 97 on the list in 2016.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 71-80


Lately we have taken a look at the international players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List that recently came out. We have taken a look at nos. 81-100 and today we will look at 71-80.

If you missed the first two segments you can check them out here:

International Players – No. 81-90
International Players – No. 91-100

No. 73 German Marquez, RHP/Colorado Rockies – Marquez, originally from Venezuela, will turn 22 later this month before heading into season number 5 for the hard throwing righty. He was apart of a trade that brought prospect Jake McGee to the Rockies. He was a bit overlooked but quickly made a name for himself. He won the Eastern League (AA) pitcher of the year award last season after posting a 2.85 ERA over 21 starts. After a short stint in AAA, Marquez made his MLB debut last year pitching in 6 games with 3 starts. While he may not continue his 12.2 K/9 that he had over 20.2 innings in Colorado, he has a shot to be an impact starter for the big league club for years to come.

No. 72 Jorge Alfaro, C/Philadelphia Phillies – Alfaro was once a highly thought of prospect in the Texas Rangers farm system out of Colombia. Now after a trade that brought Cole Hamels to Texas in 2015, Alfaro went east to join Philly’s farm system. Last year marked Alfaro’s rise to the big leagues after a great season in AA. In Reading Alfaro showed off his power (21 doubles and 15 home runs) and showed he can be more consistent at the plate as he hit .285. While his strikeouts are still a bit high, he is still only 23. He has the defense to play at the big league level to the point that the talk of moving him out from behind the plate has slowed down. He has a high upside and might just earn a few more at bats sometime this season with the big league club. Alfaro ranked no. 59 on the 2016 Top 100 List.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 81-90


Yesterday we took a look at the international players from 91-100 which contained four players from across the globe. Today we will take a look at the only international player from 81-90.

International Players – 91-100

No. 90 Raimel Tapia, OF/Colorado Rockies – Tapia signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2010. The lefty will be 23 for this season when he will look to continue his strong hitting. He won the Pioneer League (Rookie-level) MVP in 2013. This past season he played at AAA Albuquerque where he hit .346 over 110 at bats. He spent most of the year tearing up the Eastern League where he posted a .323/.363/.450 line with 20 doubles, 5 triples, and 8 home runs. He has speed but hasn’t quite learned the art of the stolen base being only successful in 17/31 attempts last season in AA. He did make his MLB debut last September where he played in 22 games hitting .263 over 41 at bats.

Last season Tapia landed on the top 100 list at no. 71.

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International Players on the MLB Top 100 Prospects List – No. 91-100


One of my favorite days of the year is when MLB releases its Top 100 Prospects list. I love to see which teams have the most on the list (Braves/Yankees with 7 each), and I love to see who is moving and of course the top 10.

However, one exercise that I love to do is look at the foreign players on the list. After all, most of what we cover here are foreign leagues. So I will leave the debate up to  you as to whether or not Andrew Benintendi should be no. 1 or not, and I will take a look at the foreign players on the list starting with 91-100. Each day over the next week or so we will look at another set of players from the MLB Top 100 Prospects list. In total there are 27 that come from international markets.

MLB Prospects 91-100:

No. 97 Cal Quantrill, RHP/San Diego Padres – Quantrill, out of Port Hope, Ontario, Canada) might be a name you already know. His father, Paul Quantrill, pitched in the big leagues for 14 seasons. But despite Paul’s solid career, Cal’s might overshadow dad’s one day. Cal was drafted this summer 8th overall out of Stanford University despite not pitching in 2016 due to Tommy John surgery. He showed why the Padres drafted him so high late in the summer when he returned to the mound finishing the year in A-ball after a few starts in Rookie League and Low-A. While he might not project to be a no. 1 starter, he has the chance to have a long solid career with his solid three-pitch-mix. I got to see him in 2012 at the 18U World Baseball Championship in Seoul, and while he did not have the best tournament (1-1, 5.63) he did enough to impress upon me that he has a long future ahead of him.

No. 96 Jeimer Candelario, 3B,1B/Chicago Cubs – Candelario was born in New York but was raised in the Dominican Republic where his father ran a baseball training center. Signed in 2010, Candelario made his MLB debut this past July. However, he remains hopelessly blocked by 2016 NL MVP Kris Bryant. A switch-hitter with some pop, and the ability to walk, he has the bat to make it in the big leagues but where will he play. He has had some time at first base as well, but is blocked there as well by Anthony Rizzo. He could possibly be moved to a corner outfield spot, or he might be trade bait later in the year should the Cubs need a piece to make a run at a second title. Jeimer moves up from no. 100 on the list in 2016.

No. 94 Richard Urena, SS/Toronto Blue Jays – Urena comes out of San Francisco de Macoris, Dominican Republic. He will turn 21 in just under a month. Signed in 2012, Urena reached AA at the age of 20. After fellow Blue Jays short stop prospect Franklin Barreto was traded away in the Josh Donaldson deal, Urena appears to be the heir to the shortstop thrown north of the border. Lack of focus at times causes Urena to commit a few too many errors. He does have the range and arm to stick to shortstop and has been a switch-hitter for just three years now. Despite falling from no. 74 on the list in 2016, Urena might be ready for his MLB debut in 2018.

No. 91 Delvin Perez, SS/St. Louis Cardinals – Delvin Perez comes in this year at no. 91 on the list. A newcomer on the list, Perez was drafted just last summer (1st Rd, no. 23) out of the International Baseball Academy in Ceiba, Puerto Rico. He played in just 43 games after signing, but already showed flashes of why he is in the top 100. With the Gulf Coast League Cardinals (Rookie), Perez hit .294 with 8 doubles, 4 triples, and 12 stolen bases. Despite his good offensive showing, his defense is where he will impact the game more right now. His speed allows him to cover a lot of ground defensively, and when  you add in his strong arm he will be a solid short stop where he projects to stay. However, he is already been the talk of controversy having tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs prior to the draft.

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List – Numbers 41-50


We have finished looking at the international players on the bottom half of the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List. Today we start in on the Top 50.

In case you missed one of the other posts, there are here:

#51-60 International Players

#61-70 International Players

#71-80 International Players

#81-90 International Players

#91-100 International Players

Yasiel Puig, of, LAD – #47

Yasiel Puig hails from Cienfuegos, Cuba having defected in 2012. He is still young, 22, and has a lot of upside yet a lot to prove.

He missed the entire 2011-2012 season in Cuba (it runs during the winter months) after being suspended for trying to defect after playing at the World Port Tournament in the Netherlands. He didn’t sign until late June of last year so he has only a little time in the minors here.

However, this year he started out at Double-A Chattanooga where he has done quite well in just 14 games. So far this year he has hit four home runs and posted a line of .333/379/.648 so far.

He has good speed and shows good instincts but needs to work on his route running a bit. He is still young and learning while becoming acclimated to the US. He has a strong arm and has even drawn comparisons to the likes of Matt Kemp on his athletic ability.

Julio Teheran, p, ATL – #44

Julio Teheran, from Cartagena, Colombia, is no stranger to the Baseball America Top 100. This is his fourth year on the list dropping considerably after a poor 2012 season. After both the 2010 and 2011 seasons, he was ranked as the #5 prospect in all of baseball.

Teheran had a break out year in 2011 posting a 15-3 mark with an ERA of just 2.55 at Triple-A. He got his first taste of the big leagues that year but struggled a bit. His ERA ballooned to over five in 2012 in Triple-A, but has shown flashes of brilliance.

In 2013, Teheran has started the year as the Braves 5th starter and has had an up and down season already. He has the stuff to be a top of the line starter, but hasn’t shown the consistency at the MLB level so far.

Hyun-jin Ryu, p, LAD – #42

Ryu comes from Incheon, South Korea and has been pitching in the Korean Baseball Organization for the past few years where he has been a star. In 2010, he posted a 16-4 record with a 1.82 ERA for one of the worst teams in the KBO, the Hanwha Eagles.

The Dodgers won the bidding for Ryu this past offseason and have already put him into the starting rotation where he hasn’t disappointed. So far in 2013, he is 2-1 with a 3.45 ERA in five starts.

Ryu won’t overpower you with a 95+ mph fastball, but he knows how to pitch and has a good assortment of pitches that he can control. Look for him to be a solid #3 or #4 for years to come with the possibility that he could even become a #2 starter down the line with some more experience.

He is just 26-years old and signed a six-year contract, so the Dodger will control him during his most formidable years.

Oswaldo Arcia, of, MIN – #41

Oswaldo Arcia signed with Minnesota as a free agent in 2007 out of Anaco, Venezuela. He has since worked his way up to a call up from the big league club earlier this season.

He started 2013 in Triple-A and simply dominated in the short time he was there hitting .394 with three home runs in ten games. Since being called up, Arcia has hit a pair of home runs in ten games.

Scouts love his bat and see him evolving into a 30-doubles and 20-homer guy down the line.

It’s unclear how long he will remain in the big leagues, but it appears clear that while he is there, he will play.

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List – Numbers 51-60


I know we are a month into the season, but that doesn’t change the fact that these guys are still prospects. So we continue our look at the international players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List.

We have looked at the following already:

#61-70 International Players

#71-80 International Players

#81-90 International Players

#91-100 International Players

Now we take a look at #51-60

Gary Sanchez, c, NYY – #57

Gary Sanchez hails from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and is high on the prospect list for the New York Yankees ranking #3 after the 2012 season. The 20-year old catcher has drawn a lot of praise for his defensive abilities behind the plate.

Sanchez has shown some power hitting 18 home runs a year ago splitting time between Low and High-A ball. He has had a good start to the year so far in Single-A Tampa in the Florida State League getting on base at a .356 clip and smashing four home runs in the first 17 games.

Over his career he has thrown out 30% of would be base stealers. Look for him to make the move to Double-A at some point this season, and he could make his MLB debut in 2014 or 2015 if he continues to develop.

Gregory Polanco, of, PIT – #51

Polanco is also out of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The  21-year old outfielder had a breakout year in 2012 posting a line of .325/.380/.455 while hitting 16 home runs and stealing 40 bases.

He finished the 2012 season in Low-A ball and was moved up to High-A this season where he is still hitting. So far through 23 games, Polanco is hitting at a .318 clip and has stolen nine bases.

If he continues this pace, he might earn a promotion to Double-A Altoona later in the year. After the 2012 season, Baseball America rated him as the best athlete, best defensive outfielder, and the best hitter for average in the Pittsburgh system.

Coming up tomorrow, players #41-50

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List – Numbers 61-70


Yesterday we looked at the international players ranking 71-80 on Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospects List. Today we look at the next 10 spots.

In case you missed the others you can find them here:

#’s 71-80

#’s 81-90

#’s 91-100

Wily Peralta, rhp, MIL – #69

Peralta hails from Samana, Dominican Republic and is slated to be the Milwaukee Brewers 5th starter to open the 2013 season. He got a taste of the Bigs last season pitching in six games with five starts. In those six games, Peralta went 2-1 with a 2.48 ERA over 29.0 innings.

He spent most of the 2012 season in Triple-A Nashville before getting the call. He has had some flashes of brilliance over his short minor league career, but he will go through some growing pains in his first season as a full-time MLB starter. He has struggled at times with his control walking too many hitters and will need to work on that to be an effective pitcher at the big league level.

He is a big guy at 6’1″, 245 lbs and throws hard. He has a career 8.54 SO/9 so he will get his fair share of strikeouts. He also has a good slider and had the top rated slider in the Brewers system in 2012.

Alen Hanson, ss, PIT – #61

Hanson is a young, 20-years old, shortstop out of La Romana, Dominican Republic. He spent 2012 with Low-A West Virginia last season and had a good year. In 124 games he posted a .309/.374/.482 line with 16 home runs and 35 stolen bases.

He has a slim frame at 5’11″/165 but he has shown power and speed which could prove to be a great asset down the line. He was rated at the fastest baserunner  in the Pirates system after the 2011 season by Baseball America and was named the Most Exciting Player in the South Atlantic League in 2012.

Look for him to move up to the Florida State League in 2013. He still has a few things to iron out including cutting down on his 105 strikeouts from 2012 along with learning the art of stealing a base better as he got thrown out 19 times last season.

He is a toolsy player that is exciting and young. Look for him to stay at shortstop until he proves he can’t play there.

Next up we will take a look at the international players from #51-60.

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospects List – Numbers 71-80


Before the World Baseball Classic we took a look at some of the international players on Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospect List. If you missed those, you can find #’s 91-100 here and #’s 81-90 here. Today we pick up where we left off with #’s 71-80.

Didi Gregorius, ss, ARI – #80

Hailing from Amsterdam, Gregorius was signed out of the Netherlands in 2007 as a free agent by the Cincinnati Reds. At age 18 in the Gulf Coast League, he hit just .155 in 97 at bats, but he didn’t give up there and last season got a taste of the Major Leagues.

He is a defensive middle infielder who was ranked at the #5 prospect in the Diamondbacks organization after the 2012 season. He was a part of the three team deal that saw the Reds, Indians, and Diamondbacks swapping players in December 2012. He is considered one of the top shortstop prospects in the game. It looks as though he will start the year at Triple-A Reno, but look for him to make an impact very soon at the big league level.

Luis Heredia, rhp, PIT – #78

Heredia, who was born in Mexico, is only 18 years old. He pitched the 2012 season in short-season A ball in the New York-Penn League for State College. In 14 starts Heredia was 4-2 with a 2.71 ERA.

Heredia signed in 2006 as a non-drafted free agent receiving a huge $2.6 million bonus from the Pittsburgh Pirates. He has a huge frame at 6′ 6″ and 205 lbs, but he is still growing physically at only 18 years old.

He throws hard reaching 96 on the gun, but usually sits in the low 90s. He has good control so far, but he is still young and working on improving not only his fastball but his secondary pitches as well. He has huge upside, but only time will tell.

Look for him to start the year in Low-A ball with the possibility of moving up depending on his results.

Marcell Ozuna, of, MIA – #75

Ozuna, a power hitting outfielder from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, blasted 24 long balls in 2012 in High-A Jupiter in the Florida State League. He also exhibits another sought after trait for an outfielder, speed. He stole 17 bases in 2011 and covers a lot of ground in the outfield. Another tool he has is a strong arm. He has been rated with the best outfield arm in the Marlins system the past three seasons.

However, Ozuna will need to identify pitches better if he wants to continue up the ladder. He has strikeout totals of 116 and 121 the last two seasons, but he is still learning. One thing is for sure, when he hits the ball he hits it with authority.

Look for the 22-year old to spend most of the season in Double-A Jacksonville for the Marlins. He is the Marlins #5 prospect.

Avisail Garcia, of, DET – #74

The 21-year old outfielder from Venezuela got a taste of the big leagues last season with Detroit making the jump from Double-A Erie. And when he got the call, he excelled. In 23 games, he hit .319 in 47 at bats.

He is a solid defensive outfielder with a good arm. Baseball America rated him as the best outfield arm in the Tigers farm system the past two seasons. He has some power and speed and could turn into quite a threat in the Tigers lineup.

Look for Garcia to start the year in Triple-A. A heel contusion put him on the DL a few days ago, so he is a long shot to make the Opening Day roster.

Next up we will take a look at the international players from #61-70.

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List – Numbers 81-90


Last time we took a look at #91-100 on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospect List which featured three international players. Today we take the next step down the list with #81-90.

Hak-Ju Lee, ss, TB – #90

Born in South Korea, Lee was signed as a free agent by the Cubs in 2008. He was later traded to Tampa Bay in the deal that sent Matt Garza to the Cubs.

Lee spent the 2012 season in Double-A Montgomery where he put up solid numbers, but the slipped a bit as he moved up against tougher competition. This is his third time on the Top 100 List starting at #92 in 2011. He then jumped up a lot after a nice 2011 season to #44 before falling back to #90 this year.

Lee has a lot of speed stealing 37 bases in 2012 in Double-A and hitting 10 triples. His on-base-percentage fell quite a bit this past season as his strikeout numbers jumped to over 100, but look for him to settle in with more at-bats against the higher competition. He is a plus defender at shortstop and has consistently been ranked among the top Rays prospects for the past couple seasons.

James Paxton, lhp, SEA – #87

Paxton hails from Canada but played his college ball at the University of Kentucky. He is a hard throwing lefty who has averaged more than a strikeout per inning over his brief career. Drafted by the Blue Jays in 2009, Paxton didn’t sign and elected to return to school. However, the NCAA deemed him ineligible due to his contract with agent Scott Boras. Instead, he signed with the independent Grand Prairie Airhogs before being drafted again in 2010. This time he was drafted in the 4th round by Seattle and signed.

In his first season of affiliated ball, Paxton struck out 131 batters in 95 innings. He spent all of the 2012 season at Double-A Jackson where he posted a line of 9-4/3.05 in 21 starts. He throws hard and has a good breaking ball, but like many young pitchers can struggle with his control at times. In 2012, he walked 54 batters in 106 innings. Look for him to get a little more seasoning in the minor leagues this upcoming season.

Yordano Ventura, rhp, KC – #85

This is the first appearance on the Top 100 for Ventura who hails from the Dominican Republic. While Ventura may be small in stature, 5’11” and 150 lbs, he has shown a live arm and the ability to get hitters out.

Ventura spent 2012 split mostly between Single-A and Double-A, but he posted good numbers at both. In 109.1 combined innings he struck out 130 batters. After his move up to the higher level he struggled a bit, but he is still only 21. For the past two seasons he has ranked #1 in the Kansas City Royals organization for the best fastball.

He will need more seasoning in the minors, but he could have a big future ahead of him, especially if he harnesses that fastball and learns to throw more strikes.

Arodys Vizcaino, rhp, CHC – #83

Vizcaino is no stranger to the Top 100 List as this is his fourth appearance on it. Out of the Dominican Republic, he was once a top prospect with the Yankees and then Atlanta.

He is still  young at only 22, but he has has injury problems. He had Tommy John surgery in March of 2012 and missed the entire season. He has a great fastball, once clocked at 101 mph, and has had a top rated curve ball in every minor league system he has been apart of.

In 2011, Vizcaino got a taste of the big leagues pitching in 17 games for the Atlanta Braves. While he struggled with his control at times (he walked 9 in 17 innings), he also showed how he can be overpowering striking out a batter per inning.

He will look to come back from injury this season and reclaim the form that made him one of the top prospects. He has a strong arm, is still very young, and with some time already in the big leagues he will look to eventually help the Cubs at the big league level sometime in the near future.

Martin Perez, lhp, TEX – #81

Perez comes out of Venezuela and is a highly thought of pitching prospect for the Texas Rangers. At the age of 21, Perez got a taste of the big leagues making six starts in Texas and getting into six other games in relief.

Perez has been talked about for several years now within the Rangers organization. He is a left-handed pitcher with good off speed stuff having ranked at the top of the Rangers minor league system as having the best curve ball and change up and one point or another. His biggest problem it seems so far has been control. He has continually walked more than three batters per nine innings pretty much everywhere he has gone. He is not going to blow hitters away and rack up strikeouts, so he has to learn better control.

Perez has a shot at the Rangers rotation this year if he can come away with a big spring. The team is hurting for starters as a few of their regulars are on the DL with injuries to start the season. He could just make it in as the number five starter if he pitches well enough.If not, look for him to start the year in Triple-A Round Rock.

Next up we will take a look at the international players from #71-80.

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International Players on the Baseball America Top 100 Prospects List – Numbers 91-100


Today we start a series taking a look at the international players on the Baseball America 2013 Top 100 Prospects List. Today we will take a look at the bottom 10 of the list from 91-100 and see which players were born and raised internationally.

So here we go with the first few:

Leonys Martin, of, TEX – #97

Martin was born in Cuba and signed by the Texas Rangers in 2011 as a free agent. He has been a top prospect in the minors for a few years now appearing on the 2012 edition of the Top 100 the previous season at #79.

He has spent two seasons in the Rangers farm system and has had a little taste of the Major League level as well. In the minor leagues he has done quite well. In 124 games, at all levels, he has hit .323 with 16 home runs and 29 stolen bases. However, he has struggled in his short time at the MLB level. He has appeared in 32 games garnering 54 at-bats hitting just .204.

The upcoming season could be huge from Martin though. With the absence of Josh Hamilton in the Rangers outfield, Martin looks to get a lot of playing time perhaps in a platoon with Craig Gentry in center field. He will get a lot of playing time this spring as they will look for him to be a contributor at the big league level.

Bruce Rondon, rhp, DET – #95

Bruce Rondon is from Valencia, Venezuela and was signed by the Detroit Tigers as a non-drafted free agent in September 2007.

This is the first time Rondon has cracked the Top 100 List, but he is only 22. Last season he pitched at High-A, Double-A, and Triple-A doing quite well at all levels. He is a closer in the minor leagues already picking up 65 saves in five years in the minor leagues. In 2012, he picked up 29 saves in the minor leagues. He is a strikeout pitcher averaging more than one per inning in his career so far, but he has had control problems in the past walking 5.10 per 9 innings over his career.

He has a lot of upside and his future is now. The Tigers didn’t resign closer Jose Valverde and are looking for Rondon to open the season as the Detroit Tigers closer if the passes the audition this spring.

Daniel Corcino, rhp, CIN – #94

Corcino is from Azuna, Dominican Republic and enters the 2013 season at only 22 years of age. He was signed by the Cincinnati Reds as a non-drafted free agent in January 2008.

After spending three seasons in Rookie ball or at the Low-A level, Corcino was moved to a starting pitcher and really took off. In 2011, he spent the year at the Low-A level and pitched well for Dayton going 11-7/3.42 in 26 starts. He made the jump to Double-A Pensacola last year and pitched just as well. In 26 starts, Corcino went 8-8 with a 3.01 ERA over 143.1 innings.

Like a lot of young pitchers he has struggled at times with his control. Over his minor league career he has averaged 3.48 walks per 9 innings. He can miss bats at time as well with his career 8.65 strikeouts per 9 innings.

He will once again get to face advanced hitters at either the Double-A or Triple-A level for 2013 to see if he can continue his success and move further toward a spot in the Cincinnati rotation.

Next up we will take a look at the prospects from 81-90.

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WBC: Top Prospect Profar Opts Out of Classic


The #1 prospect in baseball has opted out of the 2013 World Baseball Classic. Jurikson Profar has decided against playing for the Netherlands in the WBC and will concentrate on making the Texas Rangers 25 man roster.

Profar, a native of Curacao, was named to the Netherlands’ provisional roster. He will be in a tough battle to make the Rangers as a middle infielder. He will be competing with the likes of Elvis Andrus at shortstop and Ian Kinsler at second base.

The Rangers have said they would rather Profar playing everyday at AAA Round Rock over having him play a limited role at the big league level.

During big league camp Profar should get a lot of playing time since Andrus has committed to playing in the WBC for Venezuela.

Profar, who will turn 20 at the end of February, spent the 2012 season with AA Frisco. In 126 games, Profar hit 14 home runs, batted .281, and stole 16 bases. He was called up in September and went 3-for-17 with a home run in 9 games.

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WBC: Provisional Rosters Announced


The 16 teams participating in the 2013 World Baseball Classic announced their provisional rosters on Thursday.

The USA Roster is full of stars including former MVPs and last year’s NL Cy Young winner in R.A. Dickey. However, despite their talent each time, the USA has never reached the finals.

Canada released 27 names saving the last roster spot for Joey Votto who first has to pass a physical for insurance purposes since he missed part of last season. Its roster features 12 players who played in the Major Leagues in 2012 including first baseman Justin Morneau (Twins), catcher Russell Martin (Pirates), Jessie Crain (White Sox), and third baseman Brett Lawrie (Blue Jays).

The Dominican Republic has a roster also chocked full of stars from the big leagues. Its roster is complete with Major Leaguers except for one free agent. It includes stars such as Jose Reyes (Blue Jays), Hanley Ramirez (Dodgers), Nelson Cruz (Rangers), and Melkey Cabrera (Blue Jays). The only non MLB roster player is catcher Miguel Olivo.

Other big names that will be playing with their countries are Miguel Cabrera (Venezuela), Carlos Beltran (Puerto Rico), Yadier Molina (Puerto Rico), and Adrian Gonzalez (Mexico).

The two teams from the ’09 final, Japan and South Korea, are both without a single MLB player on their roster this time around. However, don’t ever count them out. Both teams will be well prepared and have a lot of talent and will still be one of the favorites in the tournament.

Some of the games top prospects, including who many feel is the No. 1 prospect, will be playing as well. Jurickson Profar (Rangers/Netherlands), Xander Bogaerts (Red Sox/Netherlands), Jonathan Schoop (Orioles/Netherlands), Eddie Rosario (Twins/Puerto Rico), and Phillippe Aumont (Phillies/Canada) among others will compete on the international stage.

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Steroids Hurting Dominican Prospects


DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – The international signing period opened on July 2 amidst a cloud of controversy in the Dominican Republic, where numerous top prospects allegedly tested positive for steroids. But while MLB scouts and officials were treading cautiously in Santo Domingo, several prospects in Venezuela were reaping seven-figure bonuses to develop their skills in the U.S. minor leagues.

Adonis Cardona, a powerful 16-year-old right-hander, reportedly set a record for a Venezuelan prospect when the Toronto Blue Jays gave the hard-throwing, front-of-the-rotation pitcher a $2.8 million bonus. Oakland doled out a $2.2 million bonus to third baseman Renato Nunez, while another Venezuelan, outfielder Danry Vasquez, got a $1 million bonus to sign with Detroit.

While the number of signings in the Dominican Republic has definitely been affected by the stain of steroids, the Latin American “hotbed” of future Major Leaguers still managed more than a few noteworthy deals. Houston completed one of the biggest deals when the National League franchise inked 16-year-old outfielder Ariel Ovando for a bonus in the range of $2.6-$2.8 million. Ovando has also cleared the rigorous background checks done by MLB.

Below is a partial list of the Latin American prospects signed recently by MLB clubs.

COLOMBIA:
Jose Torres, RHP, Seattle Mariners ($851,000)

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:
Phillips Castillo, OF, Seattle Mariners ($2.2 million)
Hector Veloz, 3B, Baltimore Orioles ($300,000)
Ariel Ovando, OF, Houston Astros ($2.6-$2.8 million)
Mauricio Cabrera, RHP, Atlanta Braves
Yoel Araujo, OF, Tampa Bay Rays ($800,000)
Reyson Zoquier, LHP, Minnesota Twins
Daniel Sanchez, SS, Chicago Cubs

VENEZUELA:
Yordyn Calderon, 3B, Seattle Mariners ($477,500)
Ronny Mejias, SS, Arizona Diamondbacks ($300,000)
Yorman Garcia, CF, Arizona Diamondbacks
Vicente Lupo, OF, New York Mets
Gabriel Ceñas, 3B, Toronto Blue Jays ($700,000)
Adonis Cardona, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays ($2.8 million)
Jose Tovar, LHP, Colorado Rockies ($350,000)
Danry Vasquez, OF, Detroit Tigers ($1 million)
Francisco Silva, SS, Philadelphia Phillies ($200,000)
Renato Nunez, 3B, Oakland Athletics ($2.2 million)
Anderson Mata, LHP, Oakland Athletics
Jose Torres, LHP, Oakland Athletics

Source: Baseball America

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Italian Tops 2010 European Prospects


UNITED STATES – Italian infielder Alex Liddi (Seattle Mariners) and German catcher Kai Gronauer (New York Mets) continue to set the standard for European baseball prospects toiling in the United States minor leagues. Liddi remains one of the top offensive threats from the old continent, while Gronauer is also enjoying success inside the batter’s box in 2010.

The 21-year-old Liddi (pictured), who is the first Italian-born position player to play professional baseball in the United States, enjoyed a break-out season in 2009 with a league-leading .345 batting average with 23 home runs and 104 RBIs with the Class-A High Desert Mavericks. He was named the California League Most Valuable Player as well as the Mariners’ Minor League Player of the Year.

The San Remo native went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs in a 12-7 win against Birmingham on July 14, and is hitting .265 with six homers, 22 doubles and 55 RBIs in 86 games for Double-A West Tenn Diamond Jaxx. He also earned Southern League Player of the Week honors on June 14.

Gronauer has been red-hot since getting promoted to the St. Lucie Mets of the Florida State League (Class A Advanced). The Solingen native is 19-for-58 (.328) with a home run and eight RBIs in 16 games.

The 23-year-old backstop entered Friday night’s contest on a 11-for-36 (.306) streak with four RBIs and a stolen base.

Other notable European prospects includes the following:

Gregory Halman (Tacoma Rainers – AAA)
22-year-old Dutch outfielder is batting .261 (58-for-222) with 20 homers and 45 RBIs in 61 games for Mariners Triple A club.

Rick van den Hurk (New Orleans Zephyrs – AAA)
25-year-old Dutch right-hander has posted a 5-4 record with a 5.68 ERA in 16 starts with the Marlins Triple A affiliate team.

Donald Lutz (Billings Mustangs – Rookie)
21-year-old German first baseman is hitting .286 (18-for-63) with three home runs and 12 RBIs in 17 games for Reds Rookie level club.

Alex Maestri (Daytona Cubs – A)
25-year-old Italian right-hander is 2-4 with a 6.02 ERA and 39 K’s in 49.1 innings in 2010 with a pair of Cubs affiliates teams.

Andrei Lobanov (Beloit Snappers – A)
20-year-old Russian left-hander is 2-0 with a 1.89 ERA with 31 K’s in 38 innings this season with a trio of Twins affiliate squads.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

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Pirates Ink Belarusian Pitching Prospect


BELARUS – Aleksey Lukashevich of the Baseball and Softball Club Brest Zubrs became the first player from Belarus to join a MLB organization when he signed a professional contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The pro career of the 16-year-old Belarusian pitcher, who is currently training in the United States, will begin in the minor leagues.

Alex began to engage in baseball at the age of 6 years under the guidance of his father – the head coach of Brest Zubrs, Igor Lukashevich. In 2003 at the age of nine Alexei took part in the European Juvenile Championship in Moscow (Russia). In 2005 he participated in the European Championship in Moldova, where he was recognized as MVP of tournament.

From 2005 to 2007 he participated in the European regional baseball Little League and played in the European regional baseball tournament junior league in Kutno (Poland) in 2008 and 2009. In June, 2010, he was a member of Brest Zubrs at the European Cup Qualifier.

Alex helped the Brest Zubrs become the winner of the international tournament for the Cup of the President of Poland twice, where he was one of the best players in the competition. Last year, he was selected as one of 50 baseball players in Europe to train in the MLB European Academy in Tirrenia (Italy).

After the completion of MLB training camp, six Major League teams showed interest in the Belarusian Baseball player, and Alex accepted an offer by the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Source: Brest Zubrs

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2010 Aflac All-American Baseball Classic


UNITED STATES – The nation’s top high school baseball players will travel to San Diego on August 15 to play in the 2010 Aflac All-American Baseball Classic. The eighth annual baseball showcase, featuring an East vs West matchup of the nation’s top high school players, will be held at PETCO Park, home of the San Diego Padres, and will be nationally televised live on FOX Sports Net.

Andre “The Hawk” Dawson, eight-time MLB Gold Glove outfielder and four-time MLB Silver Slugger, will serve as honorary chairman for the 2010 showcase. Dawson will be inducted into the MLB Baseball Hall of Fame on July 25, 2010.

In addition to helping promote the Aflac All-American Baseball Classic, Dawson will be on-site in San Diego for game week activities, including player practice sessions and the annual awards banquet. This will be Dawson’s first time serving as honorary chairman. Past honorary chairmen have included Hall of Famers Ozzie Smith (2007, 2008, 2009), Reggie Jackson (2006), Cal Ripken Jr. (2004, 2005) and Stan Musial (2003).

The Aflac All-American Baseball Classic is more than just a game. It is part of Aflac’s ongoing commitment to the fight against childhood cancer, with ticket proceeds benefiting Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. Since 2003, the Aflac All-American Baseball Classic has generated nearly $805,000 for charity.

The Aflac All-American players will be led by a stellar coaching staff for the 2010 showcase. Larry Knight of Sumrall High School in Hattiesburg, Miss., will manage the East team. Knight is in his fourth season as head coach at Sumrall and was recently honored as USA Today’s 2010 High School Coach of the Year. This year, he led his team to a third consecutive Class 3A State Championship finishing as the No. 1 ranked team with a 35-1 record.

Managing the West squad will be Bill Hutton of Archbishop Mitty High School in San Jose, Calif. Hutton is in his 28th season as head coach at Archibishop Mitty, where his team has secured four West Catholic Athletic League Championship titles and four Central Coast Section Championship titles. His team finished the past season ranked No. 1 in California with a 31-3 record.

Aflac All-American Baseball Classic alumni have had a significant presence in Major League Baseball’s first-year player drafts. Since the game’s inception in 2003, 80 alumni have been selected in the first round, including four No. 1 overall selections like, Justin Upton (2005, Arizona), Tim Beckham (2008, Tampa) and this year’s overall top pick, Bryce Harper (2010, Washington). Fifteen Aflac All-Americans were taken in the first round of the 2010 draft, including the No. 1 and No. 2 overall picks, Harper by the Nationals and Jameson Taillon by Pittsburgh, respectively. San Diego also drafted 2009 Aflac All-Americans Karsten Whitson and A.J. Vanegas.

The Aflac All-American Baseball Classic is considered the nation’s marquee prep event. Participants must have just completed their junior year of high school, be in good academic standing and display qualities off the field that embody baseball’s ideals, including discipline, determination and hard work.

2010 East Team All-Stars:

CATCHER
Cameron Gallagher (Lancaster, Pa.); Tyler Marlette (Oviedo, Fla.); Brandon Sedell (Davie, Fla.)

INFIELDERS
Javier Baez (Jacksonville, Fla.); Francisco Lindor (Clermont, Fla.); Austin Slater (Jacksonville, Fla.); Josh Tobias (Greensboro, N.C.);

OUTFIELDERS
Jake Cave (Hampton, Va.); Larry Greene (Nashville, Ga.); Sean Trent (Maitland, Fla.)

PITCHERS
Tyler Beede (Auburn, Mass.); Jose Fernandez (Tampa, Fla.); Michael Kelly (Boynton Beach, Fla.); Deshorn Lake (Newport News, Va.); John Magliozzi (Milton, Mass.); Dillon Maples (West End, N.C.); Daniel Norris (Johnson City, Tenn.); Philip Pfeifer (Knoxville, Tenn.); Andrew Suarez (Miami, Fla.)

Head Coach: Larry Knight
Assistant Coaches: Kevin Maris, Omar Washington

2010 West Team All-Stars:

CATCHERS
Austin Hedges (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.); Daniel Mengden (Houston, Texas); Blake Swihart (Rio Rancho, N.M)

INFIELDERS
Christian Lopes (Huntington Beach, Calif.); Ricky Jacquez (El Paso, Texas); Travis Harrison (Aliso Viejo, Calif.); Phillip Evans (Carlsbad, Calif.); Matthew Dean (Highland Village, Texas)

OUTFIELDERS
Daniel Camarena (Bonita, Calif.); Shawon Dunston, Jr. (Fremont, Calif.); William Flamion (Modesto, Calif.);

PITCHERS
Archie Bradley (Broken Arrow, Okla.); Dylan Bundy (Owasso, Okla.); Dylan Davis (Redmond, Wash.); Dillon Howard (Searcy, Ark.); Christian Montgomery (Indianapolis, Ind.); Henry Owens (Huntington Beach, Calif.); Joe Ross (Oakland, Calif.); Robert Stephenson (Martinez, Calif.)

Head Coach: Bill Hutton
Assistant Coaches: Cecil Espy, Manny Hermosillo

Source: Aflac All-American Baseball Classic

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MLB Teams Eyeing Taiwanese Southpaw


TAIWAN – Kaohsiung county left-hander Wei-Chung Wang is attracting interest from several Major League clubs, according to the Taiwan Baseball blog. Wang is the younger brother of Chicago Cubs prospect Yao-Lin Wang.

The 18-year-old, who stands six-foot-one, reportedly has a smooth delivery with a clean arm action. The souting report at the Taiwanese baseball web site listed the following analysis:

“Although his arm speed is just average, he is very projectable. Earlier this year, his fastball was in the low 80’s but he has hit 88 mph quite a few times in the current Yu-Shan Cup. He has also flashed an above average changeup that he throws for a strike.”

Photo courtesy of Taiwan Baseball

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Boras Corp. Signs Top Korean Prospect


SOUTH KOREA – The Boras Corporation has inked one of South Korea’s top pitching prospects, Han Sung-hyuk, according to a report by The Korea Times. The Duksoo High School senior will complete his prep studies early in 2011.

The 17-year-old right-hander, who reportedly possesses a triple digit fastball, compiled a 0.69 ERA at last year’s President’s Cup National High School Baseball Championship. One of his teammates, Kim Jin-young, signed a professional contract with the Chicago Cubs this past March.

The Boras Corporation is led by super agent Scott Boras.

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Polls

Who will win the 2017 World Baseball Classic?

  • Puerto Rico (31%, 27 Votes)
  • Dominican Republic (13%, 11 Votes)
  • USA (13%, 11 Votes)
  • Mexico (11%, 10 Votes)
  • Other (8%, 7 Votes)
  • Cuba (8%, 7 Votes)
  • Venezuela (6%, 5 Votes)
  • Netherlands (5%, 4 Votes)
  • Japan (5%, 4 Votes)
  • Chinese Taipei (1%, 1 Votes)
  • South Korea (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Canada (0%, 0 Votes)

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