Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Top 200 MLB Prospects for 2011

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Also available at rankings.baseballnewshound.com

Ranking the Top Prospects in Major League Baseball

by Ryan S. Kelley

Description of Rankings and Scoring Methods:

Below is a rankings database constructed by Ryan Kelley, Executive Editor of Baseball News Hound L.L.C.  Top prospects are ranked based on scouting grades derived from Baseball News Hound scouting reports. A list of other sources where information was consulted or used is available at the bottom of this page and listed under "Bibliography."

All scouting grades are based on the standard "20-80" scouting scale. Ratings of 50 and 55 are considered low-average and high-average tools respectively. Low-average and high-average tools are given to prospect skills that project to fall within the range of MLB average when (and if) they play in the Major Leagues. Scores above this range (60-80) are considered above-average, "plus," and "plus-plus" respectively, and indicate skills that project to outperform the average Major League player of the same position. A plus (rated 60-65) fastball, for instance, would indicate a fastball that features consistent 92-95 mph velocity, and movement at or above the average Major League fastball movement. Outside of velocity and movement, a pitches's overall effectiveness determines its' score.

Tools projected to be below average tools are scored in the 20-45 range. Generally however, and tools rated below 40 are extremely rare at the Major League Level. Adam Dunn/Sean Casey running speed are "30" tools, and Jason Tyner batting power would be at the bottom of the scale as well.

All grades account for a players' present and projected ability. Young prospects for instance, won't have the present skills that Major League players and more experienced prospects have, but their potential skills might allow them to grade comparably.

An in-depth description of the scale is available here at Baseball Prospectus.


Click here to view the rankings in a new window, or view the embedded spreadsheet below.

Top 200 MLB Prospects 2011


The above columns/categories are as follows:

Rank: The players' overall rank in comparison to other top prospects.

Grade: A rough letter grade on the scale F-A+ defining the prospects' overall value. This grade takes in to account their skills, experience level, and any attribute that possibly affects their future. A top-tier, five-tool scout may still fall below the A range due to injury concerns, make-up issues or other negative attributes that could decrease the players' overall value.

D.O.B.: "Date-Of-Birth" is the players' birth date.

Hght/Wght: The players' height (in inches) and weight (in pounds).

OPS: (Batters) Aggregate (Minor League) career On-Base-Plus-Slugging Percentage (expressed as a decimal here)

ERA: (Pitchers) Aggregate (Minor League) career Earned-Run-Average.

Bat: (Batters) A score for the batters' hitting ability. Distinct from power or plate discipline, this is a measurement of a batters' ability to hit for batting average and to make square contact to all fields.

Fb: (Pitchers) A score for the pitchers' fastball effectiveness. The score is based on fastball velocity, movement and the pitchers' ability to utilize it.

Pwr: (Batters) A score for the batters' ability to hit the baseball with authority and generate extra base hits. The score is based on the batters' bat speed, strength, loft and both raw and projected power.

Bb: (Pitchers) A score for the pitchers' "breaking-ball" or repertoire of breaking pitches. The score accounts the velocity, the amount of break, the sharpness of the break and the overall effectiveness of the pitchers' breaking pitches.

Spd: (Batters) A score for a baserunner's in game runnings speed. This score rates a players' running speed on the basepaths, out of the batters box and in the field (while playing defense).

Ch: (Pitchers) A score for a pitchers' changeup(s). The score is based on the pitches' velocity, movement, on the arm-speed with which the pitcher delivers it.

Fld: (Batters) A score for a batters' overall defensive ability. Arm strength, throw accuracy, range, agility/body control are the primary factors taken in to account for this grade.

Cmd: (Pitchers) A scouting score for the pitchers' ability to locate his pitches.

Dis: (Batters) A grade for the batters' plate discipline. The batters' ability to reach base against advanced pitching, to work the count to his favor and to make quick adjustments when needed.

Pol: (Pitchers) A score for a pitchers' effectiveness outside of a pure 'stuff' level. Pitching intelligence, poise/mound presence and clean mechanics are considered here.

Full Scouting Reports

Full scouting reports on top prospects in baseball are available at scout.baseballnewshound.com. Many of the reports are in the process of being formatted and posted, but a complete list of reports on the top 50 prospects will be available by February 11, 2011. We are still in the process of editing all scouting reports. Please excuse any grammatical or formatting errors.


Callis, Jim, John Manuel, and Jim Shonerd. Baseball America. Web. 06 Feb. 2011. <http://www.baseballamerica.com>.

Forman, Sean. Baseball-Reference.com - Major League Baseball Statistics and History. Sports Reference L.L.C., 1 May 2004. Web. Nov. 2010. <http://www.baseball-reference.com/>.

Kelley, Ryan S. "Top 100 MLB Prospects for 2010." The Baseball Chronicle. The Baseball News Hound L.L.C., 6 Nov. 2009. Web. <http://thebaseballchronicle.blogspot.com/2009/11/top-25-mlb-prospects-spring-2010.html>.

All articles and spreadsheets on this page are property of  BaseballNewsHound.com and Baseball News Hound L.L.C.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Red Sox Add Bobby Jenks and Others to 'Pen, Projected Payroll Outpaces Yankees' (For Now)

According to ESPN's Buster Olney, (on Twitter) the Red Sox have signed former Chicago White Sox closer, Bobby Jenks, to a two-year $12 million dollar contract. After Jenks' relatively disappointing season, where he posted a 4.44 ERA, the White Sox decided to non-tender the reliever in November.

Bobby Jenks, a former All-Star, is one of a trip of high-profile Red Sox acquisitions this month. The Red Sox added perennial American League and National League MVP candidates, Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez earlier in December, during the winter meetings.

The Red Sox have also made a number of smaller transactions this offseason. They've handed new contracts to veteran main-stays, Jason Varitek and David Ortiz, and have added a number of veteran pitchers. Earlier today it was reported that the team would re-sign former Detroit Tigers' top prospect Andrew Miller, and was preparing to sign free agent pitcher Matt Albers.

With the recent, expensive acquistions of Gonzalez, Crawford, and Jenks combined with new contracts for veterans like Jason Varitek and David Ortiz, the Red Sox may have passed the Yankees' projected 2011 payroll-- for the time being.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Yankees Sign Russell Martin

Yankees Sign Russell Martin To One Year Deal
Ryan Kelley
3:47pm EST

The New York Yankees are in the process of signing former All-Star catcher Russell Martin to a deal that will probably keep him in New York through 2012. This signing came only hours after the team fell short of signing their primary target this offseason, star free agent pitcher Cliff Lee. Lee’s decision to sign with the Phillies, instead, shocked much of the baseball community.

Only a couple of years ago, Martin, the Dodger’s former starting catcher, was one of the National League’s rising stars. He made the NL All-Star team in 2007 and 2008, and has won both a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger. Marred by injury, Martin has seen a steep drop in his production these past two seasons, failing to post an OPS above .680. His defense is still premium among MLB catchers, though, and he has experience playing third base as well.

The Yankees hope that Martin can rebound from the hip injury—a hairline fracture—that depressed his 2009 production. In order for his contract to become official, Martin will have to pass a physical proving his health. With less than five years of MLB service time, Martin will be under team control through 2012.

Earlier this winter, the Dodgers offered Martin a $4.2 million dollar contract, with an additional $1.1 million in incentives. The two sides weren’t able to reach an agreement and Martin was non-tendered a couple of weeks ago.

Martin, a native of Montreal Quebec, had stated that he wanted to play for an East Coast team so that he could be closer to his home city. Naturally, the Boston Red Sox and the Toronto Blue Jays were also possible suitors for the 28-year-old catcher.
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