Yesterday we took a look at the best season’s put up by the Cincinnati Reds minor leaguers from 2010-2019. And there were a few incredible stats in there, too. If you haven’t checked out that article, you really should. But today we are going in a different direction. We’re going to look at the best prospects at each position for the last decade. This isn’t about performance, past or present. What we’re going to do is look back at the Baseball America Top 100 list (or organizational rankings for positions that didn’t have someone make the list) and put together a team based around the highest rated prospect at each spot.

Position Player Ranking
C Devin Mesoraco (2011) 16
1B Yonder Alonso (2010) 45
2B Todd Frazier (2010) 43
3B Nick Senzel (2019) 7
SS Billy Hamilton (2013) 20
OF Taylor Trammell (2019) 33
OF Billy Hamilton (2014) 43
OF Jesse Winker (2015) 47
SP Aroldis Chapman (2011) 7
SP Robert Stephenson (2014) 19
SP Hunter Greene (2018) 29
SP Cody Reed (2016) 34
SP Raisel Iglesias (2015) 58
RP Michael Lorenzen (2014) (org 6)
RP JJ Hoover (2013) (org 8)
RP Sal Romano (2017) (org 8)

Nick Senzel and Aroldis Chapman bookended the decade with the Reds highest prospect ranking, tying each other with the #7 spot overall in baseball. No other Reds prospects made the Top 10 list in all of baseball in that span of time. Only Devin Mesoraco and Robert Stephenson found themselves inside the Top 20 over that stretch.

What’s interesting to see is the prospects listed at positions that they ultimately didn’t wind up at. Todd Frazier was an absolute disaster at second base. Despite playing shortstop for almost his entire life up to that point, when he moved to the other side of the second base bag he simply couldn’t play there naturally. Every move that he made was thought out and you could see him thinking it through like he was trying to learn a new dance. The experiment didn’t last too long. Billy Hamilton made the list twice, once as a shortstop and once as an outfielder. The move to center seemed to work out quite well for him.

The starting pitching situation, though, is tough to look at. Only Hunter Greene is still starting among the group. Everyone else has since transitioned to the bullpen. Tyler Mahle, Amir Garrett, and Tony Santillan were also Top 100 prospects as starting pitchers, but were rated lower than the #58 spot that Raisel Iglesias wound up in.

With the relievers there was always talk with both Aroldis Chapman and Raisel Iglesias that they could wind up as relievers down the road, but were viewed as potential starters and listed as such. That left no reliever for the Reds rated among the Top 100 prospects in baseball. Only a few during the entire decade wound up being rated in the Top 10 in the organization.

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Doug Gray is the owner and operator of this website and has been running it since 2006 in one variation or another. You can follow him on twitter @dougdirt24, or follow the site on Facebook. and Youtube.

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13 Responses

    • Doug Gray

      He’s fast enough to cover two positions. It just made sense.

    • Martino Amello

      I always thought he should have shrunk down to 7 inches tall to walk every time at bat..

  1. Scott C

    I think the big thing this list shows is that you can’t become too enamored with prospects. Many on the list have had decent careers but with the exception of Chapman, none have been game changers. To be fair a number of prospects on that list have not yet had a legitimate opportunity and may turn into superstars. Mesoraco might have been if not injured. Grandall who obviously was ranked below Mesoraco has gone onto to be one of the better catchers in the game. Prospects have value but they are unproven. George Allen said it best. “The future is now. If we do the proper things today, we will win today and we will also win tomorrow. I think that sometimes we can be so concerned about the future that it never comes.” I am not for selling the whole farm but if we have to use some prospect capital to build the team, then I hope the FO does it for now and the future.

    • Oldtimer

      Frazier has had a good (not great) career. Better than Mesoraco.

      • Oldtimer

        … Thornburg, 31, has struggled since he underwent thoracic outlet syndrome surgery in 2017. The right-hander posted a 6.54 ERA across 41 appearances for the Red Sox over the past two seasons …

      • Optimist

        Another ex-Brewer, though I believe only one year overlap with coach Johnson. Still, building quite a stockpile for Goodyear.

  2. Simon Cowell

    #30 on baseball America for drafting over the past decade.

    • RojoBenjy


      What criteria was used to rank the list?

      On second thought, the past decade for the Reds could be analyzed in a lot different ways and come up wanting.

      It is what it is.

      • Doug Gray

        MLB WAR. Which makes it rather useless right now. Basically, Tyler Stephenson is a failed draft pick. So is Hunter Greene. Nick Senzel is worth less as a draft pick than Tony Cingrani. Let’s talk about it in a decade when we actually have data that matters.

        There’s a reason I haven’t talked about/published anything about the list. It’s not really useful right now.

  3. Martino

    Maybe Thornburg will find his grove again, but TOR is no fun either way. It might end his career, but he might get over it.