Chat Wrap: John Manuel took your Sally League questions
TOP 20 PROSPECTS
1. Delmon Young, of, Charleston, S.C.
2. Ian Stewart, 3b, Asheville
3. Lastings Milledge, of, Capital City
4. Adam Miller, rhp, Lake County
5. Yusmeiro Petit, rhp, Capital City
6. Chuck Tiffany, lhp, Columbus
7. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, c, Rome
8. Brandon McCarthy, rhp, Kannapolis
9. Andy LaRoche, 3b, Columbus
10. Clint Everts, rhp, Savannah
11. Michael Bourn, of, Lakewood
12. Jacob Stevens, lhp, Rome
13. Tom Gorzelanny, lhp, Hickory
14. Josh Anderson, of, Lexington
15. Chris Young, of, Kannapolis
16. Nate Schierholtz, 3b, Hagerstown
17. Scott Mathieson, rhp, Lakewood
18. Matt Albers, rhp, Lexington
19. Chin-Lung Hu, ss, Columbus
20. Brandon Moss, of, Augusta
Promising young hitters usually are as common as cornfields in the low Class A Midwest League.
With a 16-team league, narrowing down a prospect list to 20 can be a challenge. With a 16-team league as stacked as the low Class A South Atlantic League was in 2004, it's nearly impossible.
Managers and scouts agreed the talent in the Sally League was as good as it had been in a long time, possibly since the 1995 crop that included Andruw Jones and Vladimir Guerrero. That year, Jones and Guerrero stood atop a pack of impact bats that also included future big leaguers such as Todd Helton and Carlos Lee.
This year's SAL looks similar, with star power at the top in Delmon Young, Ian Stewart and Lastings Milledge, as well as plenty of depth with speedy outfielders and other potential power hitters.
"The league was just outstanding," Augusta manager Chad Epperson said. "It wasn't just that you had star players like Delmon Young, Ian Stewart, Lastings Milledge, Brandon Moss, Josh Anderson. They all had help. They had good teammates. That's a big reason you had these young players with talent putting up all these numbers."