2017 Top 100 Prospects: By The Numbers

A collection of notes to put this year’s class of Top 100 Prospects in context.

When Might We See Senzel In Cincy?

The Reds selected Tennessee third baseman Nick Senzel with the second overall pick in the 2016 draft and signed him for $6.2 million, the highest bonus for any player in his draft class. He hit well in a 68-game pro debut and ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the low Class A Midwest League as well as the Reds system.

The experience Senzel gained in 2016 puts him on pace to begin 2017 at high Class A and finish at Double-A. But if the recent track record for the top college position players is any guide, Senzel is just as likely to finish 2017 in the big leagues. That's because three of the past four top college bats drafted have reached the majors in their second professional season.

Here are the top college bats selected in the past five drafts, along with peak level reached in each year and total minor league plate appearances (MiLB PA) before they reached the majors.

Draft No Player Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 MiLB PA
2016 2 Nick Senzel Low Class A ? 292+
2015 1 Dansby Swanson Short-season Majors 569
2014 4 Kyle Schwarber High Class A Majors 621
2013 2 Kris Bryant High Class A Triple-A Majors 773
2012 3 Mike Zunino Double-A Majors 398

Dansby Swanson, Kyle Schwarber and Mike Zunino all finished their second pro seasons in the majors, while Kris Bryant wasn't far behind. He spent just seven games at Triple-A Iowa in his third pro season—to delay his free agent eligibility—before the Cubs called him up. Given that the Reds probably won't be competitive in 2017, they might elect to follow the Cubs' template with Bryant and keep Senzel in the minors until his third pro season. Note, however, that the 2013 Mariners and 2016 Braves still elected to call up Zunino and Swanson despite being in the midst of 90-loss seasons.

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