Northwest League Top 20 Prospects List

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1. Matt Latos, rhp, Eugene
2. Josh Donaldson, c, Boise (Cubs
3. Juan Ramirez, rhp, Everett
Tony Thomas, 2b, Boise (Cubs)
5. Fabio Castillo, rhp, Spokane
Kellen Kulbacki, of, Eugene (Padres)
7. Tommy Hunter, rhp, Spokane
Greg Halman, of, Everett (Mariners)
9. Helder Velazquez, ss, Tri
City (Rockies)
Matt Mangini, 3b, Everett (Mariners)
11. Corey Brown, of, Vancouver
Bruce Billings, rhp, Tri City (Rockies)
13. Cory Riordan, rhp, Tri City
Mitch Canham, c, Eugene (Padres)
15. Robinson Fabian, rhp, Tri
City (Rockies)
Kyler Burke, of, Boise (Cubs)
17. Edward Paredes, lhp,
Everett (Mariners)
18. Chris Huseby, rhp, Boise
Brian Rike, of, Tri City (Rockies)
20. Jake Brigham, rhp, Spokane

won its second straight short-season Northwest League title and fourth
in eight years. The Volcanoes ran roughshod over the league with a
57-19 regular-season record and were the lone NWL club to finish above
.500. Ironically, they also were one of just two teams to get shut out
on our Top 20 Prospects list. The pride of the NWL was loaded with
older players with more limited ceilings than the Volcanoes’ ’06
championship team that had Tim Lincecum, Manny Burriss, Adam Cowart and
other prospects on its roster.

“Last year was Apollo Creed and
this year was Rocky Balboa,” Salem-Keizer manager Steve Decker said.
“We did not have a lot of those tools guys on this year’s team, but we
had a group of guys that really know how to play the game and when we
got a lead late, we weren’t losing.”

The year, the Northwest
League’s best prospects were mostly unfinished projects. Even the No. 1
player on this list, Eugene righthander Matt Latos, still has a long
ways to go with his consistency and overall feel for the craft.

was very comparable to what it was last year,” Vancouver manager Rick
Magnante said. “Overall, the talent pool might have been a little
stronger last year, but this is an advanced first-year league with
predominately college players and Latin players who have two or three
years of service. We saw a good combination of those Latin players and
a lot of the same players who were in Alaska, Cape Cod and some of the
other top college summer leagues a year ago.”

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