It is officially prospect list season. Two of the big players in the prospecting world have released their 2024 Top 100 Prospects lists in the last 30 hours. Baseball Prospectus put their list out on Wednesday and Baseball America dropped their list on Thursday morning. Both lists featured three Cincinnati Reds prospects.

Noelvi Marte is the top rated Reds prospect on both lists. Baseball Prospectus had the infielder rated at the #25 spot. Baseball America had him a tad higher, checking in at #23 overall. Getting 114 at-bats in the big leagues fell about a week short of at-bats to have Marte no longer qualify for prospect lists (130 at-bats is one of the cutoff points), but he didn’t reach that mark and is technically still a prospect and eligible for the 2024 Rookie of the Year award.

After beginning the year in Double-A with Chattanooga, Marte was promoted to Triple-A Louisville in late June after returning from the injured list. He would spend just under two months with the Bats in Triple-A before he was called up to join the Reds on August 19th. During his time in the minors in 2023 he hit a combined .279/.358/.454 with 18 stolen bases, 20 doubles, 4 triples, and 11 home runs in 92 games.

He pinch ran on his first day in the majors, but began to see starts the next day and never looked back. He would play in 35 games with Cincinnati until the season came to an end and he didn’t skip a beat. In his time with the Reds down the stretch he hit .316/.366/.456 with 7 doubles, 6 more steals, and he hit 3 home runs.

Both lists also feature the Reds 1st round pick in 2023, Rhett Lowder. The right-handed pitcher came in at #49 on the list from Baseball Prospectus and at #60 overall from the crew at Baseball America. Lowder did not pitch after being the 7th overall selection in the draft. He went 15-0 at Wake Forest during his junior year and posted an ERA of 1.87. In his 120.1 innings he allowed 90 hits, walked just 24 batters, and he racked up 143 strikeouts.

The last player from the Reds organization to make each list is also a pitcher. Connor Phillips, like Marte, made his debut with Cincinnati in 2023 during the second half of the season. Baseball America had him at #78, while the group at Baseball Prospectus had him ranked 72nd. The right-handed starter began his season in Double-A where he made 14 starts with a 3.34 ERA and 111 strikeouts to go along with 27 walks in 64.2 innings pitched. He then moved up to Triple-A where he pitched in 11 more games, but saw his ERA jump to 4.69 with 43 strikeouts and 30 walks in 40.1 innings. Needing anyone who could throw a baseball 60′ 6″ down the stretch, the Reds called Phillips up in September and he made five starts for the big league club. He struggled, throwing just 20.2 innings in those outings with a 6.97 ERA, 13 walks, and 26 strikeouts.

Both publications also had an article that featured guys who just missed the list and no Reds prospects appeared on it. However, Baseball America also included a list all of the players who received votes from someone on a Top 100 list – the writers all submit a top 100 list and then begin discussing the players in order to form the list that eventually gets published. To note – while I do write a monthly Reds column for Baseball America I have no input at all with any of their prospect lists. While Cincinnati had just three players in the Top 100, they had an additional seven players get at least one vote from someone as a Top 100 prospect. Perhaps the most surprising there was Alfredo Duno given his age and that he has not played outside of the Dominican Summer League.

28 Responses

  1. Jonathan

    I’m surprised Chase Petty or Edwin Arroyo was on the list…

  2. DaveCT

    Arroyo’s absence is a bit surprising, given how he came on during the year while being one of the younger players in the league. I do think a hot start combined with graduations out of the Top 100. Will see Edwin make it. Similar status for Petty though he may have a bit more to prove given his innings limit last year, fair or unfair.

    • DaveCT

      For what it’s worth (a great song, by the way), there is A LOT of talent in the ‘just missed’ category. The sheer volume of talent in baseball just makes me smile

  3. DaveCT

    From BA: “Beginning this year, we are not including players who are classified by MLB as “foreign professionals” when they sign (i.e. players 25 or older who are eligible to sign MLB contacts immediately).”

    GOOD.

    • Greenfield Red

      Agree. Those guys get plenty of attention as it is. It’s good to see the younger guys get a little press… in my opinion.

    • Greenfield Red

      I also think Collier will have a big year. Stewart and Cabrera too. Could be a fun year.

    • Matt McWax

      Watching some of the highlights from Wake Forest/LSU really showed the ridiculous amount of baseball talent out there. There were a number of guys that all looked real close to major league level, Lowder being one of them. The athletic 1B Tre Morgan is probably as good as any major leaguer defensively at the position. Skenes will be scary for the Pirates and Crews seems can’t miss. But even the supporting cast made a lot of impressive plays.

      It also goes without saying that a league of the best 18-22 year old (U.S. college age) Dominicans would be fierce.

  4. RedsGettingBetter

    I always feel the Reds have a lot of good prospects that performed very well in 2023 however when the experts mention the players who would be top prospects there are just few from Cincy… I wonder if they are underrating some Reds kids such as Petty, Arroyo, Hinds, Collier, Stewart, Rodriguez, Jorge or it’s just I overvalue them…I expect the next top 100 list will include two more Reds prospects

    • DaveCT

      I think part of it may be the ebb and flow of organizational depth and/or rankings year-to-year. We had a lot of very good to elite talent graduate in 2023. Outside of Marte, the kids such as Jorge, HRod, Stewart, Hinds, Dunn immediately behind this wave are not necessarily at the same level — yet. And we have yet to see Lowder, Collier needs a rebound, Duno hasn’t been stateside, etc. So, even though we RML regulars just *might* over value our prospects, there are, I believe, other factors in play.

    • Stock

      This is my viewpoint. Until the last several years it always seemed the players I was highest on underperformed. It seemed like as Reds players climbed the ladder there were missing rungs and they would stumble.

      But things started changing. Ashcraft was not even in Doug’s top 25 until he caught fire in 2021. He jumped to #5 and never looked back. Abbott was ranked 14 by Doug after the 2022 season. He took off in 2023. EDLC came from nowhere. The list goes on and on now. I can’t help but feel the Reds have turned the corner in player development. Last year’s rookie class was fantastic. But this is not at all what was expected. Doug had them ranked as follows (fangraphs FV):

      1. EDLC (60)
      5. Steer (50)
      6. McLain (45)
      7. CES (40+)
      11. Williamson (45)
      14. Abbott (40+)

      These guys came out of nowhere and outperformed expectations so much that they lost prospect status.

      But the over performance was not limited to these six.

      Blake Dunn and Jacob Hurtubise have been mentioned by most on here previously. Julien Aguiar was fantastic. Sal Stewart, Carlos Jorge and Hector Rodriguez have been incredible. Arroyo and Matheu Nelson had good finishes.

      Have the Reds figured out how to develop players? Have the Reds figured out which players they can suggest adjustments and get a prospect?
      Are the Reds getting lucky signing players cheaply and having them turn into legit prospects?

      • DaveCT

        With that, the Reds are also targeting, drafting and signing players with higher athleticism, with high baseball IQ, and seemingly with more emphasis on making better contact. While they will likely always take flyers on kids such as Hendricks having contact issues, these I would say will be tempered with better a developmental program in hitting.

      • DaveCT

        I posted this in the previous article’s comments..

        Daryl Ward as Lookouts hitting coach last season may very well have some success attached to him.

        Rece Hinds. Jacob Hurtubise. Blake Dunn. Alex McGarry. Noelvi Marte. Each of these guys flourished at AA. Hinds made what looks to be a significant improvement. McGarry, as well. Hurtubise showed much greater power. Not too shabby! And, as I’ve droned on about, the organization’s top to bottom hitting program seems to have worked well at AA, and Ward seems as if he is well tuned to it.

      • Stock

        Does anyone know if Ward was the hitting coach at Dayton in 2022?

      • DaveCT

        Stock, Doug knows (previous article)):

        “Daryle Ward is also returning to Chattanooga. He has been with the hitting coach for the Lookouts in 2023 as well as 2019. He also served as Dayton’s hitting coach in 2017, 2018, 2021 and 2022.”

    • Stock

      What I love about this interview is:

      1. Hurtubise says he recognizes pitches out of the hand. He knows what pitch is coming right away. This is a huge asset. Tony Gwynn used to say he knew he was done as a hitter when his vision dipped to 20/20. He lost his advantage of knowing what pitch was coming before it left the pitchers hand.

      2. He went to driveline last winter and is going again this year. That tells me he has a good work effort and is driven.

      3. He knows himself. He understands he is not a HR hitter. But he also has a keen understanding of what he needs to work on to make it to the show. People who have the insight to understand themselves are usually successful.

      I rated Hurtubise #16 on my prospect list. I dropped him to 17 when I plugged Adolfo Sanchez at #16. After reading this I am thinking I may have pegged him a bit low and that he should be in the top 15.

      2024 just got a little more interesting. Thanks for posting this MBS.

      • Optimist

        Hurtubise and Dunn are at the top of the “watch this season” list of MLB debuts. Each a curious case of late arrivals for a variety of reasons. Each with obvious comparisons – combinations of Justin Turner and Stephen Kwan. Each with intriguing skill sets.

        The younger prospects are looking for traditional developmental breakthroughs, but these two seem to have edged into looking for opportunities – I expect they’ll get them this season.

  5. RedBB

    I believe Marte should qualify for the Prospect Promotion incentive (Pretty safe to say either MLB.com or ESPN has him also in the top 100). Doubt Lowder or Phillips make the opening day roster though.

    • RedBB

      FYI for 2024 MLB Draft both Arizona and Baltimore got an extra end of the first round draft pick for winning this via Carroll and Gunnar.

  6. SultanofSwaff

    Arroyo and Stewart are rather glaring omissions imo.
    Arroyo has reached AA as a 19 year old with very solid offensive numbers to go with a play anywhere glove. Not sure how that led to him going from the 61st spot a year ago to not being on the list.
    Stewart has reached high A ball at 19 with an OPS over .800 while having more walks than strikeouts…..1st round pedigree to boot.

    It wouldn’t be the offseason w/o the baseball world at large undervaluing the Reds prospects and yet somehow we have the team with the most young talent in baseball. smh.

    • Stock

      I think Arroyo takes off this year (see DaveCT comment above). He will be a top 50 or possibly even a top 25 prospect in January 2025.

      I think the same will be said about Collier. Stewart will probably be a top 100 prospect a year from now but I hope he will be a top 50.

    • DaveCT

      Sultan, the main thing I think of when looking at the world of baseball lists, then how accomplished players such as Arroyo get squeezed, is writers being enamored with new draftees and international signees.

  7. Stock

    Sleeper pick for top 100 prospect next year:

    Matheu Nelson.

    Last 2 months of the year: ISO .272, BB% 11.4% and K% 22.7%.

    This resulted in an OPS of .980. His time at Chattanooga was very impressive.

    • DaveCT

      If you get a chance to watch Logan Tanner play this year, this kid has a laser for an arm.

      MK has said Nelson’s defense is just average but if he can figure out hitting that’d sure be a plus.

      Connor Burns is the catcher I really want watch this year. He’s really a quick twitch guy behind the plate and was highly appreciated in college. Duno, of course, too.

    • MBS

      It will be fun to see Doug’s grade for “State of the Farm: Catchers” We’ve added Duno, Burns, and this newest international FA Morillo. They should bump up the grade a bit.

      I just reread last year’s article, and found this comment by me.

      “I know it’s an unpopular opinion, but I’d move Cade Hunter off C, and onto another position. Let his bat develop, he’s not going to be a major league quality C, but he might have a major league bat.”

      If they didn’t lessen his catching burden last year, I doubt he would have reached AA. As a hybrid, he could become a member of our 2025 Reds roster.