Just moving along today we are going to look at the Top Prospects in the 21-30 range. Yesterday we covered the guys in the 31-40 range.
21. Pedro Viola – LHRP – 25 years old
Viola is a lefty who throws in the mid 90’s and has a very good slider as well as a changeup. His numbers don’t look the greatest, but he was the recipient of quite a bit of bad luck. He posted a FIP of 3.65 while striking out 23% of the batters he faced. Look for him in Louisville next year.
22. Justin Turner – 2B – 23 years old
Turner has been about as solid as you can be his entire career. He will hit for a strong average, get on base plenty and show a little pop all while playing good defense at second base. He doesn’t have any outstanding tools, but is good at everything. He could start in Carolina or Louisville next year.
23. Chris Heisey – OF – 23 years old
A good defender in centerfield, Heisey also has shown that ability to hit through the minor leagues. He is also very good on the base paths as he has 65 steals and has been caught just 13 times in his minor league career (83% success rate). Reminds me of Chris Denorfia in a lot of ways. Look for him in Carolina next year.
24. Jeremy Horst – LHP – 22 years old
Horst (right) began the season in the bullpen for Dayton, but was promoted to a starters role later in the season and made 10 dominating starts (5-0, 1.64 ERA with 52K and 11BB in 49.1ip). He throws a fastball in the 88-91 MPH range that he mixes with a plus change up as well as a developing slider. Look for him in Sarasota next year.
25. Alex Buchholz – 2B – 20 years old
Buchholz fell off his junior year with some injuries, but his previous two seasons he hit a combined .383/.433/.704 at Delaware with 29 HR and 43 doubles in two seasons as an 18 and 19 year old. He went to Billings and despite missing time due to an injury lit the league on fire as he hit .396/.471/.604. He could start in Dayton or Sarasota next season.
26. Robert Manuel – RHRP – 25 years old
There are dominating seasons and then there are what Manuel did. The righty posted a 1.93 FIP in AA while striking out 31% of the batters he faced and he walked just 5%. He features a fastball in the 89-93 MPH range with a ton of movement, a slider and a change up that is above average. He is a bit older, but he really came into his own this year. Look for him in Louisville next year.
27. Evan Hildenbrandt – RHSP – 19 years old
The right hander throws in the low 90’s with an above average curveball and a change up. He spent his season in the GCL where he was pretty dominant as he posted a 2.67 ERA and struck out 24% of the batters he faced. I would look for him in Dayton next season.
28. Travis Wood – LHSP – 21 years old
Wood features one of the best changeups thrown by a lefty in baseball, and I don’t mean the minors. His fastball is in the 88-91 MPH range and he has added a cutter in the mid 80’s as well. He had a rough transition to AA though as his strikeout rate really dropped off while his walk rate raised itself. Stuff wise, he has what you like to see. He needs to control it a little more though. Look for him in AA again next year.
29. Matt Maloney – LHSP – 24 years old
Maloney throws a fastball in the 87-90 MPH range with a good change up, average curve and a slider. He tends to work up in the zone at times and it costs him. He does have good control and will not walk many batters, but being a fly ball pitcher that throws softly doesn’t project too well.
30. Scott Carroll – RHSP – 23 years old
Despite a recent suspension for testing positive for PED’s (he denies it and is fighting it along with the Reds), Carroll has good enough stuff to make the list. He has a fastball that tops out at 93 MPH and despite getting a late start to his baseball career due to his playing college football, he has made a solid transition to pr baseball. Without the suspension, he may have ranked a little higher.