Proceeds from the ads below will be donated to the Bob Wuesthoff scholarship fund.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Baseball America's Top 10 Angels Prospects

Yup, it's that time of year again, and Baseball America has their top 10 Angels prospects list up; I'll give you the list and maybe a teaser or two:
  1. Brandon Wood, movie star

    Tom Cruise Brandon Wood

    SS Brandon Wood: Wood's package of power, hitting, all-around defensive skills and championship-caliber makeup prompted one high Class A California League manager to dub him the next Cal Ripken. ... "Out of all those home runs, there may have been one or two balls that just cleared the fence," said James Rowson, Wood's hitting coach at high Class A Rancho Cucamonga. "The other 40 were gone right off the bat."
  2. 2B Howie Kendrick: Kendrick may be the best pure hitter in the minors. His swing is compact, balanced and easily repeated. ... He has fringe-average speed, and his range, arm and defensive footwork are average at best. ... Kendrick could win multiple batting titles in the big leagues.
  3. SS Erick Aybar: Aybar got back to doing what he does best: spraying line drives to all fields and using his plus speed to set the table. He has plus actions at shortstop ... The best—and most cost-effective—solution eventually will be to find a taker for Cabrera, hand shortstop to Aybar and move Wood to third base.
  4. C Jeff Mathis: He profiles as a .250-.270 hitter with 15-20 homer potential. ... His bat isn't quite ready for everyday duty in the majors....
  5. RHP Jered Weaver: Weaver owns the system's best combination of present stuff and command. ... Weaver's command is more notable than his stuff, and some scouts think he's more of a No. 3 starter than a headliner. [Note: I believe this to be the case also. -- Rob] ... [He] struggled at times in Double-A and is at least another half-season away from joining the Angels.
  6. RHP Nick Adenhart: Before his injury, Adenhart was lauded for his polished three-pitch repertoire, the life on his stuff and his mound presence. He already has regained much of his arm strength, pitching at 89-92 mph and touching 94 with his fastball. His 11-to-5 curveball has sharp, late break. He showed a feel for a circle changeup that has potential to be a third plus offering. ... [He] throws across his body, which helps the life on his pitches but also led to his injury. ... If his stuff and command come all the way back, Adenhart has a higher ceiling than Jered Weaver.
  7. 1B/DH Kendry Morales: Morales is a mature hitter with above-average power from both sides of the plate. ... Most scouts say Morales lacks the agility and athleticism to play anywhere but first base. ... His best fit with the Angels could be as a DH.
  8. 2B Alberto Collaspo: ... while he doesn't have the aptitude Howie Kendrick possesses, he's a solid hitter. ... If he's not traded, his destiny with the Angels may be as a utilityman.
  9. LHP Joe Saunders: Saunders doesn't have overpowering stuff, relying instead on command and feel. ... Saunders doesn't have a put-away breaking ball and never has ... likely will open 2006 in Triple-A to work further on his curveball.
  10. RHP Tommy Mendoza: Mendoza dominated older hitters in the California League with a 92-94 mph fastball that touched 95 all summer. ... He's mature beyond his years. ... will open 2006 in low Class A.
You just gotta love this organization's future. Except for maybe the pitching...

Wow, drafted just last year, it didn't take pitcher Tommy Mendoza long to make the list.
As the Angels prospects graduate, their system is going to regress a bit in the majors. So too will some of the guys at the top.
The system may not regress that much if Moreno and company continue to spend lavishly on . . . draft-and-follow players like Stephen Marek; college-bound players like Mark Trumbo, who many assumed would matriculate at USC; hard-to-sign players like Jered Weaver, who many teams passed on in 2004; Latin American players not subject to the draft like Kendry Morales, Erick Aybar, etc. Props to Arte, Bill Stoneman, and Eddie Bane for their aggressive strategy.
Nick Adenhart is another example of the Angels spending alot on a somewhat high-risk/high-reward prospect. To the surprise of many, the Angels drafted him in one of the lower rounds and persuaded him to forego college by offering him a rather large bonus of $700k -- even though he had blown his arm out and needed Tommy John surgery. Right now, the kid looks like a steal.
There's another pitching prospect, Jose Arredondo, who really opened some eyes last year. He spent most of the season at Orem (Rookie League). He finished with a flourish: in his penultimate start, he pitched 8 innings of 1-run ball (unearned), giving up 2 hits, 1 walk, and 13 strikeouts. He followed that up with 7 innings of 2-hit, 1-run, 3-BB ball with 8 Ks.

I believe he's a converted infielder, but he supposedly has some great stuff...just needs to learn how to pitch. He's a couple of years away, but the early results are very encouraging. The Angels added him to their 40-man roster this year.

The Atlanta Braves' ongoing success demonstrates that it's possible to maintain both a strong farm system and a contending club in the majors.
Yes, Jose Arredondo is a converted infielder -- began his career as a shortstop, couldn't hit, and was converted to pitcher.

Jose is one of a quartet of promising Angel pitchers that began last year in the Arizona Instructional League. The other three were . . . Trevor Bell, Tommy Mendoza, and Gustavo Espinoza.

At the lower rungs of the team's system, there are some fine pitching prospects, indeed.
I'm a bit surprised not to see Mike Napoli break into this list, given his power potential and improvement behind the plate.

Post a Comment

Newer›  ‹Older
This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

WWW 6-4-2