The BA Prospect Handbook, Part Two

Picking up where we left off, here are Washington’s nos. 16 through 31 in the 2014 Baseball America Prospect Handbook:

16. Pedro Severino 21. Jefry Rodriguez 26. Nick Lee
17. Drew Ward 22. Nick Pivetta 27. Robert Benincasa
18. Aaron Barrett 23. Blake Treinen 28. Rafael Bautista
19. Jeff Kobernus 24. Christian Garcia (6) 29. Erik Davis
20. Eury Perez (7) 25. Brett Mooneyham (19) 30. Adrian Nieto
31. Anderson Franco

As mentioned in the comments, Severino’s defensive prowess has been noticed outside our little bubble. It’s encouraging to see some “love” shown for the GCLers, beginning with Ward at #17 and continuing with Jefry Rodriguez at #21 and Bautista at #28.

Ward and Pivetta are two of the four on this list who were drafted in 2013, leading us to the breakdown of how the Top 31 was “built.”

2013 Draft — Johansen (8), Voth (15), Ward (17), Pivetta (22)

2012 Draft — Giolito (1), Renda (13), Mooneyham (25), Benincasa (27)

2011 Draft — Goodwin (3), Skole (4), Purke (11), Burns (12), Lee (26)

2010 Draft — Cole* (2), Ray (5), Solis (6), Barrett (18)

2009 Draft — Taylor (7), Karns (9), Kobernus (19)

2008 DraftNieto (30)

2007 Draft — Souza (10)

Int’l Free Agents — Severino (16), Perez (20), Rodriguez (21), Bautista (28), Franco (31)

Domestic Free Agent — Garcia (24)

Trade — Cole* (2), Walters (14), Treinen (23), Davis (29)
* Take your pick: the Nats originally drafted Cole, traded him away, then reacquired him via trade

The five IFAs represents a high-water mark in the five seasons I’ve been running this site. Four of them were co-signed by Johnny DiPuglia, the veteran scout the Nationals signed after the 2009 season, or more importantly, roughly six months after “Smiley-gate.” That may not be enough for some folks’ tastes, but it’s more than it’s been in several years.

Perhaps more encouraging is that Rodriguez is BA’s breakout prospect for 2014, which may have some significance for the folks who recall that Taylor Jordan was given the same anointment in 2013. Likewise, they’re tabbing Franco as a “sleeper” (same as Pleffner last year) despite the Dominican having signed for $900,000 on his 16th birthday last August.

BA has ditched the three-year projection of the parent club’s starting lineup, which may be just as well because it always seemed a bit pie-in-the-sky (e.g. Cole & Solis were projected to be this year’s nos. 3 and 4 SPs in 2011, with Derek Norris at 1B and Eury Perez in CF) and basically ignored trades, age, and/or diminished skills (i.e. next year’s projected 1B Michael Morse)

Instead, I’ll leave you with the top unranked guys on BA’s minor-league depth chart at position/role. Call them nos. 32-43 if you want 😉

C – Jhonatan Solano SS – Jason Martinson LHSP – Danny Rosenbaum
1B – Shawn Pleffner LF – Estarlin Martinez LHRP – David Napoli
2B – Ricky Hague CF – Narciso Mesa RHSP – Blake Schwartz
3B – Cody Gunter RF – Brandon Miller RHRP – Taylor Hill**

** Hey, that’s what BA “said”… Treinen and Lee were also listed as a relievers

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 Two”

  1. Sill waiting for my copy to arrive in the mailbox, but in the mean time I’m a little perplexed at the lack of Richie Mirowski in the top 43…yes, I get that his draft spot doesn’t lead many to give him a serious look but he’s succeeded at every level so far (including the AFL)

    1. Oh, it’s even worse than that — he wasn’t listed on the RHRP depth chart at all. There’s still faint hope that he’ll get some recognition via Sickels, but until then the glory of being on this site’s 2014 watchlist will have to do.

        1. Hadn’t seen that. Terrific article. With all those pitches, you’d think they would have him starting.
          Gotta love rooting for a 45th rounder from a small-time college.

  2. Thanks for the links, where do you find them? Thanks.
    Anderson Franco was 6’3″ on his sixteenth birthday?!?! He’s going to be awfully big in a couple years, providing his age is correct.
    DiPuglia sure signed a lot of terrific players before the Nats snatched him from the Red Sox.

  3. Agree on Mirowski, Mick. Don’t get that Beinicasa and Davis are considered better or Trenin for that matter.
    A bit of a digression here, but just something I was thinking about while walking my dogs on P.E.I’s Confederation Trail.
    I don’t see Goodwin being all that successful at the major league level, yet I believe Taylor might become an elite center fielder at the same level. Anyone agree or is that just my feeling?

    1. Michael Taylor seems like a guy to me that is going to frustrate a lot of people before he really blossoms. I think a good comparison for him might be Cameron Maybin and Carlos Gomez. He has Carlos Gomez upside and already has the glove but Gomez was infuriating for Twins and Brewers fans for several season because they could see the talent was there he just couldn’t put it together. The same happened for Maybin but he still hasn’t put it to the level of Gomez. I still think Goodwin is the safer bet to be a major league player but Taylor’s upside might be higher at this point. Goodwin, from the few games I’ve seen him play, reminds me a lot of John Jay of the Cardinals but more fluid in the outfield and probably a bit more power.

  4. A little surprised that Issac Ballou failed to make the top 30. 2013 draftee, he was the best offensive player in Auburn and played reasonably well in the playoffs at Hagerstown. Guess at 23, he was considered “old” for a 2013 draft pick.

    1. I was a bit surprised too but I think you nailed it with his age. He was very old for Auburn and even old for Hagerstown.

    2. BA had some praise for Ballou for his range, athleticism and speed in its analysis of the 2013 draft, comparing him to Fred Lewis as a late-bloomer, but unless he leapfrogs Hagerstown, it’s hard not to be reminded of the accusation that BA parrots the PR folks.

  5. Any updates on C Garcia’s return from injury? Would enjoy seeing what he can put up in a season free of injury.

    1. Aside from his work in the Mexican Winter League, I haven’t heard/read/seen anything on Garcia.

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