League Top 20 Prospects

Gulf Coast League Top 20 Prospects List

Recent draftees impress in debut

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1. Clayton Kershaw, lhp, Dodgers
2. Chris Parmelee, of/1b, Twins
3. Gorkys Hernandez, of, Tigers
4. Chris Marrero, of, Nationals
5. Jason Place, of, Red Sox
6. Dellin Betances, rhp, Yankees
7. Adrian Cardenas, ss, Phillies
8. Neftali Feliz, rhp, Braves
9. Jhonny Nunez, rhp, Dodgers
10. Tom Hickman, of, Marlins
11. Preston Mattingly, ss, Dodgers
12. Kyle Drabek, rhp, Phillies
13. Steven Evarts, lhp, Braves
14. Jesus Sanchez, c, Phillies
15. Chad Rodgers, lhp, Braves
16. Josue Calzado, of, Yankees
17. D'Arby Myers, of, Phillies
18. Zach McAllister, rhp, Yankees
19. Carlos Monasterios, rhp, Yankees
20. Joe Benson, of, Twins
Though major league owners contemplated dissolving both complex-based Rookie leagues, the Arizona and the Gulf Coast, that proposal was tabled and the circuits operated as usual in 2006. For the second year in a row, the GCL was loaded with prospects, many of whom reported to Florida after being drafted in the early rounds in June. Seven first-rounders, including No. 7 overall selection Clayton Kershaw, made their pro debuts in the GCL.

A Dodgers lefthander, Kershaw was the unequivocal No. 1 prospect, dominating the league right out of high school. Three other first-round choices--Twins outfielder/first baseman Chris Parmelee, Nationals outfielder Chris Marrero and Red Sox outfielder Jason Place--ranked among the GCL's top five prospects.

The league's Latin American contingent was equally promising. Tigers outfielder Gorkys Hernandez, a 19-year-old from Venezuela, won the batting title. Hernandez' teammate, Audy Ciriaco, was one of several Latino shortstops who drew consideration for the list, along with Francisco Lizarraga (Dodgers), Carlos Rivero (Indians), Danny Garcia (Marlins) and Jose de los Santos (Pirates).

"I thought players got better and the level of play got better from the beginning to the end," Indians manager Chris Tremie said, "and to me that's a sign of a productive league."

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