The BA Prospect Handbook, Part One

The good news is that my copy of the 2012 Baseball America Prospect Handbook came in the mail yesterday. The bad news is that the four prospects traded away for Gio Gonzalez were still there. I’d go all whiny-complainy on you, but I’m old enough to remember when cut&paste was done with an Xacto and a wax machine vs. Ctrl-X and Ctrl-V. It may be easier to get the words onto the galleys, but it still takes time to publish and bind on paper.

It’s also a slight surprise to see that the pre-trade ranking of the system was #1. That may be as meaningful as winning Dixville Notch in the big picture, but I suspect if GG wins 15 or so games, it’ll be forgotten everywhere but here.

As the headline suggests, I’m breaking up the list to have multiple posts and discussion fodder. But before I do that, let’s take a look at what happened to last year’s Top 28 (remember, Michael Burgess and A.J. Morris were also traded prior to the book release):

Graduated (3) — Danny Espinosa, Wilson Ramos, Yunesky Maya (exceeded IP limit).

Rule 5 Draft (2011), Taken (1) — Brad Meyers

Rule 5 Draft (2010), Returned (1) — Elvin Ramirez

Traded (4) — Derek Norris, A.J. Cole, Brad Peacock, Tommy Milone

Dropped Out (5) — J.P. Ramirez, Ryan Tatusko, Trevor Holder, Adam Carr, Hassan Pena

Like last year, roughly half the list is new. Also, like last year, BA is effusive in its praise for Washington spending big. Naturally, no mention was made that much of the impetus for the 2011 spree — unlike the expenditures on uber-prospects Bryce Harper in 2010 and Stephen Strasburg in 2009 — might possibly have been because of the new CBA or that a Top 10 pick in 2012 was highly unlikely. Time will tell how well Rizzo really did with his unique 2009-2011 window, but for now it’s 17 of these 26 were drafted then.

Tomorrow, we’ll take a look at Nos. 16-30, but I’ll leave you today with the Top 15 per the book:

1. Bryce Harper, OF
2. Anthony Rendon, 3B
3. Brad Peacock, RHP
4. A.J. Cole, RHP
5. Brian Goodwin, OF
6. Alex Meyer, RHP
7. Matt Purke, LHP
8. Sammy Solis, LHP
9. Derek Norris, C
10. Steve Lombardozzi, 2B
11. Destin Hood, OF
12. Chris Marrero, 1B
13. Tommy Milone, LHP
14. Michael Taylor, OF
15. Rick Hague, SS

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of Potomac is his home base as a season-ticket holder, but he has visited every affiliate north of Florida at least once, with multiple trips to Hagerstown and Harrisburg.

13 thoughts on “The BA Prospect Handbook, Part One”

      1. Not YET. Though it seems all but inevitable after the Yanks acquired Kuroda and Pineda. I don’t see how he even gets close to making the roster.

        SP: Sabathia, Nova, Pineda, Kuroda, Burnett, Hughes and Garcia prevent Meyers from sniffing a spot in the rotation.
        RP: Rivera, Soriano, Robertson, Chamberlain, Logan, and Wade are all guaranteed spots. And probably one of Hughes or Garcia will play a long relief role. So unless Meyers can claim that 7th spot and hold it all season (he’ll have competition from at least 5 other guys), then he’ll be heading back to the Nats.

  1. Ah, more meat for the stew, appreciate it. You’re right about the system ranking; since the BA rankings are based on a combo of player age & ‘projectability’, they are highly volatile.

    As an aside, did Meyers show up in the Yankees rankings?

  2. I also got the book in the mail yesterday.

    LOVED, the write up on Hague. If what they say about him is true, he could rocket through the system should he be able to stay healthy.

    Also, love the new prospect rank + bust % attached to each prospect, makes comparing prospects much easier than in the past!

    1. The writeup on Hague looked to me like a thinly rewritten transcript of a conversation with a Nats PR flack. It’s amazing to me how you can suffer an injury to your throwing arm, lose a year of development, and drop just one spot? Really? Maybe that’s a testament to how thin the position is for the Nats, but in a word: specious.

      I passed on discussing the 20-80 scale with the high-medium-low-extreme risk factor. I agree it makes things easier, but I’m suspicious that it’ll be like the MLBA (which I didn’t buy this year for this reason) where few grades will change and the higher a prospect is graded in year 1, the less likely he’ll be downgraded in year 2.

  3. An eviscerated Top 15, 4 traded and 3 with zero pro innings, and 1 (Solis) with a mystery ailment. Guess I’ll always have problems with highly touted guys with zip pro stats, the 2006 draft (2 1st rounders! 5 picks in top 91!!) still leaves bile in my mouth.

    1. As well it should. The best that we can do is call them on it early and often, and continually tout the gurus that admit “You know, I may have been wrong about that guy.”

  4. I was thinking before the trade the Nats were around #5-8, no way they could have been above the Rays and the Rangers.
    Let’s hope Hague can avoid any more self inflicted injuries.
    Look forward to getting Meyers back and removing that black eye on Rizzo.

  5. Surprised we were number one with the depth and impact talent Texas and SanDiego have especially SanDiego post Latos trade.

    Here’s the Ask BA from a couple weeks ago w/ Hood, Taylor and Marrero scouting reports:

    Slightly off topic but prospect related given our lack of impact talent at 1B in the minors, and the rising cost of 1B on the open market it’d be wise to draft one high this year.

  6. Where will Hague play and at what position? Martinson will shortstop Potomac. Ortega will likely be at low A. And then there is Walters.

    1. BA says SS at Potomac after a stint in XST.

      Right now, without indication of either Rendon or Hague’s health, I’d project an IF of (3B to 1B) Martinson-Walters-Sanchez-Skole for the P-Nats.

Comments are closed.