1. Michael Stanton, OF – Stanton is probably the second best hitting prospect behind Jason Heyward. The only issue is his strike outs, but he’s got the power to be an All Star corner outfielder. Don’t expect him this year, but he could start next year in Miami.
2. Logan Morrison, 1B – Morrison took a step forward this past season with his eye; he was more patient than he previously was. He did see a drop in power, but many associate it with a wrist injury. I expect him to start the season in Triple A, but wouldn’t rule out a mid-season call up if he’s hitting well.
3. Matt Dominguez, 3B – He can handle third, but his bat disappeared in Hi-A last year. He’s still got a ways to go before he’s ready to join the major league club. I expect him to be in Double A for the season; that will determine what to project for him.
4. Ryan Tucker, P – Tucker could take over the closer role in the future, if he can stay healthy. His injury this past year was to his knee, so there is no worry about his arm, unless he changed his mechanics.
5. Chad James, P – James doesn’t have much professional experience, but scouts like his arsenal. He’s got a strong fastball that tops out in the mid-90s. He’s got that power curve that helps lefties. If he pitches to his potential, he can be a future ace.
6. Scott Cousins, OF – As of right now, Cousins is more tools that skills. He’s going to have to work on his plate discipline to be a regular player. Most scouts are saying he’s more of a fourth outfielder than starter.
7. Kyle Skipworth, C – Skipworth was highly touted coming out of high school, but his professional career has been no where close. He’s only 20, so he’s still got quite a bit of time before being dubbed a bust. Another bad season or 2 may destroy his career.
8. Gaby Sanchez, 1B – Sanchez projects as a league average first baseman; he’ll see plenty of opportunities this year. He’ll really have to stand out though to stay with Florida once Morrison is ready; he’s probably auditioning for another team rather than playing for a job.
9. Jake Smolinski, 2B – Smolinski was the key to the deal that shipped Scott Olsen and Josh Willingham to Washington. He’s got a good, developing bat, but his defense has his position up in the air. Drafted as a second baseman, he won’t stick at the position. He’s going to be used at third, which could suit him.
10. Jhan Marinez, P – Marinez is going to be another solid bullpen arm. He’s got great velocity, but doesn’t have great control. If he can harness his pitches, he’ll have a chance to be a closer. If not, look for him to be a 6-7th inning guy.
Tags: 30 Teams in 30 Days, Baseball, Baseball Preview, Top 10 Prospects