2014 Texas Rangers Top 10 Prospects


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Few teams have had a more impressive four-year run than the Rangers.

TOP 10 PROSPECTS
1. Rougned Odor, 2b
2. Jorge Alfaro, c
3. Michael Choice, of
4. Nick Williams, of
5. Joey Gallo, 3b
6. Alex Gonzalez, rhp
7. Luis Sardinas, ss
8. Luke Jackson, rhp
9. Travis Demeritte, ss/3b
10. Ronald Guzman, 1b
BEST TOOLS
Best Hitter for Average Rougned Odor
Best Power Hitter Joey Gallo
Best Strike-Zone Discipline Drew Robinson
Fastest Baserunner Chris Garia
Best Athlete Lewis Brinson
Best Fastball Keone Kela
Best Curveball Nick Martinez
Best Slider Alex Gonzalez
Best Changeup Alexander Claudio
Best Control Alex Gonzalez
Best Defensive Catcher Pat Cantwell
Best Defensive Infielder Luis Sardinas
Best Infield Arm Joey Gallo
Best Defensive Outfielder Lewis Brinson
Best Outfield Arm Preston Beck
TOP 15 PLAYERS 25 AND UNDER
No Player, Pos (Age) Peak Level
1. Jurickson Profar, ss (21) Majors
2. Elvis Andrus, ss (25) Majors
3. Rougned Odor, 2b (20) Double-A
4. Martin Perez, lhp (22) Majors
5. Neftali Feliz, rhp (25) Majors
6. Jorge Alfaro, c (20) High Class A
7. Michael Choice, of (24) Majors
8. Nick Williams, of (20) Low Class A
9. Joey Gallo, 3b (20) Low Class A
10. Alex Gonzalez, rhp (22) High Class A
11. Robbie Ross, lhp (24) Majors
12. Luis Sardinas, ss (20) Double-A
13. Luke Jackson, rhp (22) Double-A
14. Nick Tepesch, rhp (25) Majors
15. Travis Demeritte, ss (19) Rookie
TOP PROSPECTS OF THE DECADE
Year Player, Pos. 2013 Org.
2004 Adrian Gonzalez, 1b Dodgers
2005 Thomas Diamond, rhp Out of baseball
2006 Edinson Volquez, rhp Dodgers
2007 John Danks, lhp White Sox
2008 Elvis Andrus, ss Rangers
2009 Neftali Feliz, rhp Rangers
2010 Neftali Feliz, rhp Rangers
2011 Martin Perez, lhp Rangers
2012 Jurickson Profar, ss Rangers
2013 Jurickson Profar, ss Rangers
TOP DRAFT PICKS OF THE DECADE
Year Player, Pos. 2013 Org.
2004 Thomas Diamond, rhp Out of baseball
2005 John Mayberry Jr., of Phillies
2006 Kasey Kiker, lhp Out of baseball
2007 Blake Beavan, rhp Mariners
2008 Justin Smoak, 1b Mariners
2009 *Matt Purke, lhp Nationals
2010 Jake Skole, of Rangers
2011 Kevin Matthews, lhp Rangers
2012 Lewis Brinson, of Rangers
2013 Alex Gonzalez, rhp Rangers
*Did not sign
LARGEST BONUSES IN CLUB HISTORY
Leonys Martin, 2011 $5,000,000
Nomar Mazara, 2011 $4,950,000
Mark Teixeira, 2001 $4,500,000
Jairo Beras, 2012 $4,500,000
Justin Smoak, 2008 $3,500,000
Rangers Team Page
Last Year’s Rangers Top 10 Prospects
2013 Draft: Rangers
2013 Draft Report Cards: Texas RangersPremium
Complete Index of Top 10 Prospects

In each season from 2010-13, the Rangers have won at least 90 games, and they’re tied with the Braves for the second-best record during that stretch, trailing only the Yankees.
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Yet a World Series title has eluded their grasp, and a 91-win season in 2013 ended on a sour note. After the Rangers ended August in first place in the American League West, a 12-16 September dropped them into a three-way tie for the wild card. A 5-2 loss to the Rays in the Game No. 163 tiebreaker ended their season without a trip to the playoffs.

Despite the bitter aftertaste, the Rangers have still positioned themselves to be among the game’s better teams going forward. The offseason trade that sent Ian Kinsler to the Tigers for Prince Fielder should provide a major upgrade at first base while clearing the way for 2013 rookie Jurickson Profar to play every day at second.

Entering his age-21 season, Profar has breakout potential to be a perennial all-star, giving Texas one of the best infields in baseball with Fielder at first, Elvis Andrus at shortstop and Adrian Beltre at third base.

While the farm system still is in solid shape, it’s no longer elite, in part because some of the young talent has started to matriculate to the major leagues. The system would have been deeper had the Rangers not made the July 23 trade with the Cubs for Matt Garza that cost them prized righthander C.J. Edwards, along with third baseman Mike Olt and righthanders Justin Grimm and Neil Ramirez.

The team’s inability to develop position players from the draft is also a cause for concern. Since stumbling into Kinsler in the 17th round in 2003, the Rangers’ only draft to deliver an impact position player was 2006, when they drafted Chris Davis (who blossomed following a trade to the Orioles) and outfielder Craig Gentry, along with lefthander Derek Holland.

The Rangers hope their 2012 draft can reverse that trend, with a trio of hitters in third baseman Joey Gallo and outfielders Lewis Brinson and Nick Williams who teamed up in 2013 on a fascinating low Class A Hickory team filled with toolsy, high-risk players.

The international program led by A.J. Preller and Mike Daly is one of the most productive in baseball, yielding both high-end talent and depth, with most of their success coming outside the usual talent hotbed of the Dominican Republic. Yu Darvish has been the ace the Rangers expected, while Profar (Curacao), Leonys Martin (Cuba) and Martin Perez (Venezuela) have made their way to the majors.

Venezuelan second baseman Rougned Odor is the system’s No. 1 prospect, and he, Profar and Perez have made it four straight years that a Rangers international signing takes the top spot. Colombian catcher Jorge Alfaro and Venezuelan shortstop Luis Sardinas also rank among the team’s best prospects.

Both Preller and Daly were promoted, with Preller bumped to assistant general manager and Daly to farm director, replacing Tim Purpura.

Texas has been one of the most aggressive teams in the game when it comes to international signings, and 2013 was no exception. As soon as the 2013-14 international signing period opened, the Rangers blew past their bonus pool, landing Dominican righthander Marcos Diplan for $1.3 million and Dominican shortstop Yeyson Yrizarri for $1.35 million. Dominican outfielder Jose Almonte landed the team’s biggest bonus ($1.8 million), though he was not a consensus top prospect.