Aaron Hicks, of, Beloit (Twins)
2. Dee Gordon, ss, Great Lakes (Dodgers)
3. Josh Vitters, 3b, Peoria (Cubs)
5. Mike Montgomery, lhp, Burlington (Royals)
6. Casey Crosby, lhp, West Michigan (Tigers)
7. Simon Castro, rhp, Fort Wayne (Padres)
8. Jaff Decker, of, Fort Wayne (Padres)
10. Ethan Martin, rhp, Great Lakes (Dodgers)
11. Tim Melville, rhp, Burlington (Royals)
12. Eric Hosmer, 1b, Burlington (Royals)
13. A.J. Pollock, of, South Bend (Diamondbacks)
14. Wily Peralta, rhp, Wisconsin (Brewers)
15. James Darnell, 3b, Fort Wayne (Padres)
16. Chris Archer, rhp, Peoria (Cubs)
17. Kyle Russell, of, Great Lakes (Dodgers)
19. Pedro Figueroa, lhp, Kane County (Athletics)
20. Chris Carpenter, rhp, Peoria (Cubs)
To be eligible for a league’s list, a
pitcher must have thrown 1/3 inning for each team game or have made 20
appearances (10 in short-season and rookie-level leagues). Hitters need
one plate appearance for each team game.
Scouts thought the 2008 draft included one of the best hitting crops this decade, and the low Class A Midwest League reinforced that notion this year. Seven of our MWL Top 20 Prospects are position players drafted a year ago, starting with Beloit center fielder Aaron Hicks, the 14th overall selection.
Two more first-rounders, Wisconsin second baseman Brett Lawrie and Burlington first baseman Eric Hosmer, cracked the list, as did Fort Wayne left fielder Jaff Decker, a sandwich pick. The league’s co-MVPs also were products of the 2008 draft, Great Lakes shortstop Dee Gordon (fourth round) and right fielder Kyle Russell (third).
Decker and third baseman James Darnell, a 2008 second-rounder, were part of a TinCaps team that won a minor league-high 94 games and both half-season titles in the MWL East, then swept Burlington in the playoff finals.