Midwest League Top 20 Prospects List

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TOP 20
1. Jay Bruce, of, Dayton (Reds)
2. Cameron Maybin, of, West Michigan (Tigers)
3. Justin Upton, of, South Bend (Diamondbacks)
4. Colby Rasmus, of, Quad Cities (Cardinals)
5. Nick Adenhart, rhp, Cedar Rapids (Angels)
6. Jacob McGee, lhp, Southwest Michigan (Devil Rays)
7. Jaime Garcia, lhp, Quad Cities (Cardinals)
8. Wade Davis, rhp, Southwest Michigan (Devil Rays)
9. Donald Veal, lhp, Peoria (Cubs)
10. Matt Walker, rhp, Southwest Michigan (Devil Rays)
11. Stephen Marek, rhp, Cedar Rapids (Angels)
12. Johnny Cueto, rhp, Dayton (Reds)
13. Bryan Anderson, c, Quad Cities (Cardinals)
14. Oswaldo Sosa, rhp, Beloit (Twins)
15. John Mayberry Jr., of, Clinton (Rangers)
16. Justin Sellers, ss, Kane County (Athletics)
17. Eduardo Morlan, rhp, Beloit (Twins)
18. Paul Kelly, ss, Beloit (Twins)
19. Pedro Ciriaco, ss, South Bend (Diamondbacks)
20. Jeff Baisley, 3b, Kane County (Athletics)

The low Class A Midwest League has offered some strong outfield crops
in recent years, including groups featuring Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns
in 2000 and Carlos Gonzalez and Travis Buck last season. But the MWL
never has seen outfielder talent to match what it had in 2006.

Jay Bruce, West Michigan’s Cameron Maybin, South Bend’s Justin Upton
and Quad Cities’ Colby Rasmus–all high school first-round picks from
the 2005 draft–spent their first full season terrorizing MWL pitchers
and wowing everyone else. Trying to separate them as prospects wasn’t
easy, but a consensus of scouts and managers gave the nod to Bruce
because of his hitting prowess.

“Jay Bruce has the best chance
to hit among all those outfielders,” a National League scout said. “I
saw Larry Walker in Triple-A, and Jay is comparable. He has a plus bat,
plus arm and runs better than people think. His instincts for the game
at an early age are outstanding. With his plate coverage, pitch
recognition and going about being a professional, he has a chance to be
very special.”

The outfielders aside, the league’s pitching was
much deeper in talent than its position players. That said, the choice
for the MWL’s best mound prospect was clear cut, with Cedar Rapids
righthander Nick Adenhart a nearly unanimous pick as he continues his
swift comeback from Tommy John surgery.

The Top 20 list also
featured stronger bloodlines than usual. Upton (B.J.) and Rasmus (Cory)
have brothers who also were first-round picks, and Clinton outfielder
John Mayberry Jr. is part of a father-son first-round tandem. Kane
County shortstop Justin Sellers’™ father Jeff pitched in the majors,
while Southwest Michigan righty Wade Davis is the cousin of former
all-star and current Peoria manager Jody Davis.

Subscribers can read scouting
reports on all 20 players
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