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2018 Miami Marlins Top 10 Prospects



Marlins Top 10 Prospects
1. Trevor Rogers, LHP
2. Braxton Garrett, LHP
3. Brian Anderson, 3B
4. James Nelson, 3B
5. Dillon Peters, LHP
6. Brian Miller, OF
7. Edward Cabrera, RHP
8. Joe Dunand, SS
9. Merandy Gonzalez, RHP
10. Brayan Hernandez, OF
GOT QUESTIONS? Marlins Top 10 Chat

We kick off division-by-division Top 10 Prospects rankings this year with the National League East. For each organization, we identify the 10 prospects with the highest ceilings, with consideration given to the likelihood of reaching those ceilings.

To qualify as a prospect, a position player cannot exceed 130 big league at-bats, while a pitcher cannot exceed 50 innings or 30 relief appearances. These thresholds mirror major league rookie qualifications, albeit without regard for major league service time.

Notable Graduations: Relievers Jarlin Garcia (6) and Drew Steckenrider (24) combined for 105 appearances.

Trending: ◀️▶️ Still one of the shallowest.

 

SYSTEM OVERVIEW

STRENGTHS: With a pair of potential big league regulars in Brian Anderson and James Nelson, third base is easily the deepest position in a thin farm system. The Marlins have an excellent big league outfield right now, but 2017 supplemental first-rounder Brian Miller could fit in it as well in a few years.

WEAKNESSES: Derek Jeter and the Marlins’ new ownership will need patience because the system lacks impact prospects almost across the board. The team’s pitching depth is largely stuck in the low minors or injury rehab thanks to injuries to first-round prep arms Braxton Garrett (Tommy John surgery), Tyler Kolek (ditto) and Trevor Rogers (fatigue). Among the position players, very few project as future big league regulars.

 

BEST TOOLS

🔸Best Hitter for AverageBrian Miller. 🔸Best Power HitterBrian Anderson. 🔸Best Strike-Zone DisciplineBrian Miller. 🔸Fastest BaserunnerCorey Bird. 🔸Best AthleteThomas Jones. 🔸Best FastballEdward Cabrera. 🔸Best CurveballBraxton Garrett. 🔸Best SliderTyler Kinley. 🔸Best ChangeupTrevor Richards. 🔸Best Control: Ben Meyer. 🔸Best Defensive CatcherRodrigo Vigil. 🔸Best Defensive INFBrian Anderson. 🔸Best INF ArmBrian Anderson. 🔸Best Defensive OFCorey Bird. 🔸Best OF ArmAlbert Guaimaro.

 

PROJECTED 2021 LINEUP

(Listed with 2021 season age)

🔸C J.T. Realmuto (30) 🔸1B Brian Anderson (28) 🔸2B Dee Gordon (33) 🔸3B James Nelson (23) 🔸SS Joe Dunand (25) 🔸LF Marcell Ozuna (30) 🔸CF Christian Yelich (29) 🔸RF Giancarlo Stanton (31) 🔸SP Dan Straily (32) 🔸SP Trevor Rogers (23) 🔸SP Braxton Garrett (23) 🔸SP Jose Urena(29) 🔸SP Dillon Peters (28) 🔸CL Tyler Kolek (25)

 

TOP PROSPECTS OF THE DECADE

(Listed with 2017 organization)

2008: OF Cameron Maybin (Astros) | WAR: 13.1 2009: OF Cameron Maybin (Astros)** 2010: OF Giancarlo Stanton (Marlins) | WAR: 35.1 2011: 3B Matt Dominguez (Red Sox) | WAR: 0.6 2012: OF Christian Yelich (Marlins) | WAR: 17.7 2013: RHP Jose Fernandez (Deceased) | WAR: 14.2 2014: LHP Andrew Heaney (Angels) | WAR: 1.0 2015: RHP Tyler Kolek (Marlins) | WAR: N/A 2016: RHP Tyler Kolek (Marlins) | WAR: ** 2017: LHP Braxton Garrett (Marlins)| Top 10

 

TOP DRAFT PICKS OF THE DECADE

(Listed with 2017 organization)

2008: C Kyle Skipworth (Did not play) | WAR: –0.1 2009: LHP Chad James (Did not play) | WAR: N/A 2010: OF Christian Yelich (Marlins ) | WAR: 17.7 2011: RHP Jose Fernandez (Deceased) | WAR: 14.2 2012: LHP Andrew Heaney (Angels) | WAR: 1.0 2013: 3B Colin Moran (Astros ) | WAR: N/A 2014: RHP Tyler Kolek (Marlins) | WAR: N/A 2015: 1B Josh Naylor (Padres) | WAR: N/A 2016: LHP Braxton Garrett (Marlins) | Top 10 2017: LHP Trevor Rogers (Marlins) Top 10


1. Trevor Rogers, LHP 📹
BORN: Nov. 13, 1997
B-T: L-L | HT: 6-6 | WT: 185
DRAFTED: HS—Carlsbad, N.M., 2017 (1st round)
SIGNED BY: Scott Stanley
MINORS: Did not play
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Track Record: One of the oldest prep players in the 2017 draft class, Rogers was a top performer during the 2016 summer showcase circuit before seeing rather inconsistent results as a senior against inferior New Mexico competition. Selected as the 13th overall pick, Rogers signed with the Marlins for $3.4 million. Rogers, who is the cousin of former Marlins outfielder Cody Ross, did not pitch in a competitive game as a professional, though he did partake in several bullpen sessions. The organization contends Rogers is healthy and would have likely pitched in instructional league if not for Hurricane Irma canceling instructs altogether.

Scouting Report: Pitching from a lean, but projectable, 6-foot-6, 185-pound frame, Rogers uses a low three-quarters arm slot and can easily reach 95 mph with his fastball. Above-average command allows his fastball, which routinely sits in the low 90s and has reportedly topped out at 97 in bullpens, to play up. A 10-to-4 slider gives Rogers an above-average secondary offering, and though it can come across as sweepy at times, it has a chance to be a true swing-and-miss pitch if he can find a bit more consistency, which should coincide with more experience. Rogers also flashes an average-or-better changeup with late-breaking fade, as well as an average curveball that gives him a true four-pitch arsenal.

🔸Projected Future Grades On 20-80 Scouting Scale Fastball: 60. Slider: 55. Change: 45. Curve: 45. Control: 60.

The Future: Rogers will be an intriguing player to watch in 2018, when he gets his first taste of professional action at the age of 20, nearly 10 months after being drafted. If the Marlins follow the same path they did with 2016 first-round pick Braxton Garrett, then Rogers could start in low Class A Greensboro, though starting the season in extended spring training to get acclimated to pro ball is not out of the question. From there, Rogers has a chance to move through the system quickly, relative to other prep arms in his class, based largely on his age, command and projectable frame. He will, however, need to buck the recent trend of prep pitchers taken by the Marlins in the first round needing Tommy John surgery shortly after being drafted. That happened with 2014 top pick Tyler Kolek in 2016 and Garrett in 2017.
2. Braxton Garrett, LHP 📹
BORN: Aug. 5, 1997
B-T: L-L | HT: 6-3 | WT: 190
DRAFTED: HS—Florence, Ala., 2016 (1st round)
SIGNED BY: Mark Willoughby
MINORS: 1-0, 2.93 ERA | 16 SO | 6 BB | 15 IP
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Track Record: The highest-drafted prep pitcher out of Alabama since 1965, Garrett went seventh overall in 2016 and signed for an above-slot deal worth $4,195,900 before the Marlins held him out for the rest of the year in anticipation for his pro-ball debut in 2017. He made four starts for low Class A Greensboro in before having Tommy John Surgery in June.

Scouting Report: When healthy, Garrett’s best pitch is a true north-to-south curveball, which was considered one of the best offspeed offerings in the 2016 draft class and features a hard, tight break. He commands both his high-70s curveball and his low-90s fastball well, while his changeup is coming along as a third pitch with late-breaking fade. Advanced command should help each of Garrett’s three offerings continue to play up.

The Future: Garrett will miss the entire 2018 season as he rehabs from surgery, which puts him on track to return in 2019, his age-21 season. Still, he projects to have three above-average or better pitches with above-average command, meaning, if he can return fully healthy, there still is a lot to recommend Garrett as a potential No. 2 or No. 3 starter in the future.


3. Brian Anderson, 3B 📹
BORN: May 19, 1993
B-T: R-R | HT: 6-3 | WT: 185
DRAFTED: Arkansas, 2014 (3rd round)
SIGNED BY: Brian Kraft
MINORS: .275/.361/.492 | 22 HR | 1 SB | 429 AB
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Track Record: Anderson began to access his raw power more consistently in 2017, when he hit 22 home runs at Double-A Jacksonville and Triple-A New Orleans to earn a September callup. The Marlins like his solid righthanded swing and defensive versatility, though he has found a home at third base after playing first base, second base and outfield in the past.

Scouting Report: Working from a strong, 6-foot-3 frame, Anderson has a smooth, line-drive swing and is able to go gap-to-gap with solid power. Though he shows plus power to his pull side in batting practice, he is at his best when he’s spraying line drives to the right-center field gap. Defensively, Anderson possess a plus arm at third base, where his range has improved. He is excellent at coming in on the ball and making bare-handed plays. On the basepaths, Anderson shows above-average speed and instincts, but will never be known as a basestealer.

The Future: Anderson will turn 25 early in 2018 and will be looking to nail down the third base job out of spring training. Some observers believe he has the potential for 15-20 home runs.


4. James Nelson, 3B
BORN: Oct. 18, 1997
B-T: R-R | HT: 6-2 | WT: 180
DRAFTED: Cisco (Texas) JC, 2016 (15th round)
SIGNED BY: Ryan Wardinsky
MINORS: .309/.354/.456 | 7 HR | 6 SB | 395 AB
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Track Record: An 18th-round pick out of high school in 2015, Nelson didn’t sign and instead went to Cisco (Texas) JC for one season before signing with the Marlins as a 15th-round pick in 2016. Nelson is the nephew of 2004 first-round pick and ex-big leaguer Chris Nelson and spent the entire 2017 season with low Class A Greensboro.

Scouting Report: Nelson has tremendous bat speed and keeps his bat through the hitting zone. His approach at the plate is still evolving and needs maturing, but that is largely to be expected from a 19-year old in his first full season. His bat speed suggests above-average power, especially as he continues to fill out his 6-foot-2, 180-pound frame. Nelson displays average or better speed but isn’t a stolen base threat. A shortstop in high school, Nelson made a smooth move to third base and showcases all the tools necessary to be an above-average defender. He shows good range and at least above-average arm strength, but he has been error-prone with a .907 fielding percentage.

The Future: Nelson should continue his steady ascent at high Class A Jupiter in 2018. He profiles as an everyday third baseman in two or three years.


5. Dillon Peters, LHP
BORN: Aug. 31, 1992
B-T: L-L | HT: 5-9 | WT: 195
DRAFTED: Texas, 2014 (10th round)
SIGNED BY: Ryan Wardinsky
MINORS: 7-3, 1.57 ERA | 55 SO | 17 BB | 63 IP
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Track Record: A highly-regarded prep lefthander in 2011, Peters turned down several big-money offers to pitch at Texas for three seasons. Despite a strong college pedigree, he fell to the 10th round in 2014 after he required Tommy John surgery. Peters made 48 career minor league starts over three years before making his big league debut as a September callup in 2017.

Scouting Report: Peters’ 5-foot-9 height can be a bit deceiving, because he throws a lively fastball that can reach the mid-90s with sink. Pitching mostly in the 91-94 mph range, he does well at maintaining his velocity, and his command was consistently praised in the minors. Peters’ curveball has a tight rotation and can flash above-average at times, while his changeup has some depth and is considered at least average. His command allows his stuff to play up.

The Future: Peters will contend for a big league rotation spot in 2018, but with just 68 innings above class high Class A, he could also open the season in Triple-A. He projects as a No. 4 starter, but several observers think he could be slightly better based on his pure stuff, command and a bulldog mentality.


6. Brian Miller, OF 📹
BORN: Aug. 20, 1995
B-T: L-R | HT: 6-1 | WT: 186
DRAFTED: North Carolina, 2017 (1st round supplemental)
SIGNED BY: Blake Newsome
MINORS: .322/.384/.416 | 1 HR | 21 SB | 233 AB
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Track Record: Miller started at North Carolina as a DH known for his plus speed but without any natural position. He transitioned to center field by his junior year. He also has a strong wood-bat track record, hitting .327 in the 2016 Cape Cod League.

Scouting Report: The top hitter selected by the Marlins in the 2017 draft, Miller spent his entire pro debut season with low Class A Greensboro. It was there that he showed off his natural feel for hitting by using his plus speed and strong contact ability to end the season with the third-best average (.322) in the South Atlantic League from July 1 to season’s end. With a slight 6-foot-1 frame, Miller projects to have fringe-average power at best. Defensively, he has shown improved range and instincts as he gets more time in center and projects as an above-average defender there, even if his arm strength may never be more than average.

The Future: After a successful pro debut, Miller should start 2018 at high Class A Jupiter. His makeup suggests he has a great chance to maximize his potential as a high-average, low-power center fielder.


7. Edward Cabrera, RHP
BORN: April 13, 1998
B-T: R-R | HT: 6-4| WT: 175
SIGNED: Dominican Republic, 2015
SIGNED BY: Albert Gonzalez/Sandy Nin/Domingo Ortega
MINORS: 1-3, 5.30 ERA| 86 SO | 26 BB | 36 IP
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Track Record: One of five international players the Marlins signed for $100,000 in 2015, Cabrera is on track to outperform his signing bonus. At short-season Batavia in 2017, he stuck out 32 batters in 35.2 innings as an 18-year old. After throwing many innings in extended spring training, Cabrera pitched just 35 innings, which included several relief appearances to monitor his innings.

Scouting Report: The tall, lean Cabrera reached the mid-90s in 2016, then took a big step forward in 2017, when he topped out at 101 mph. His typical fastball range is 94-96 mph as a starter. His plus fastball is paired with a hard slider that flashes plus at times and showcases good tilt. Cabrera has also been working on a changeup, which currently comes across a tad firm but shows potential to be at least average. He shows above-average control in light of how hard he throws.

The Future: In a system that has taken high school pitchers in the first round in recent years, it’s Cabrera who might have the most upside. Despite his triple-digits fastball, he has plenty of projection left in his frame. He should see his first action in full-season ball in 2018


8. Joe Dunand, SS
BORN: Sept. 20, 1995
B-T: R-R| HT: 6-2 | WT: 205
DRAFTED: North Carolina State, 2017 (2nd round)
SIGNED BY: Blake Newsome
MINORS: .370/.471/.667 | 1 HR | 0 SB | 27 AB
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Track Record: Better known as Alex Rodriguez’s nephew as an amateur, Dunand was a three-year starter at North Carolina State, where he played third base as a freshman before taking over the reins at shortstop during his final two years. He hit .326 in the 2016 Cape Cod League.

Scouting Report: Dunand’s 6-foot-2, 205-pound frame would seemingly profile better at third base, but the Marlins intend to keep him at shortstop. Initial reports of his defense were encouraging, though he doesn’t project to have much more than average range. Noticeably soft hands and an above-average arm will play at short or third, however he has plus potential at the hot corner. At the plate, Dunand’s plus raw power grades well above his hit tool, but as long as he shrinks his strike zone and stays committed to using the whole field he could be projected as an above-average hitter. Dunand is an at least average runner.

The Future: Dealing with a finger injury in 2017, Dunand returned to play just eight pro games in 2017. He should begin 2018 at high Class High A Jupiter, and his major college background should allow him to be a relatively fast mover.


9. Merandy Gonzalez, RHP
BORN: Oct. 9, 1995
B-T: R-R | HT: 6-0 | WT: 216
SIGNED: Dominican Republic, 2013
SIGNED BY: Daurys Nin/Gerardo Cabrera (Mets)
MINORS: 13-3, 1.66 ERA| 103 SO | 26 BB | 130 IP
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Track Record: Acquired from the Mets along with Ricardo Cespedes as part of the A.J. Ramos trade, Gonzalez produced a stellar season in 2017. At two Class A levels, he pitched to a 1.66 ERA that ranked second in the minors. His 0.97 WHIP ranked 10th.

Scouting Report: Gonzalez is listed at just 6 feet, but he has a solid lower half and possess a strong, yet high-effort delivery that helps him top out at 97 mph with his fastball. Working mostly in the 93-95 mph range, he also has an above-average curveball that will come across the plate hard with a tight, north-to-south spin in the high 70s or low 80s. He also has feel for a third-pitch changeup. Gonzalez’s control has never been his strongest asset, but he took a step forward in 2017 by walking just 26 batters, against 103 strikeouts, in a career-high 130 innings.

The Future: Gonzalez in his full-season debut proved durable and effective, though he still faces questions about his future role. Developing his command and changeup will be key to staying in the rotation. If he can’t, his power repertoire should play as a high-leverage reliever.


10. Brayan Hernandez, OF 📹
BORN: Sept. 11, 1997
B-T: R-R | HT: 6-2 | WT: 175
SIGNED: Venezuela, 2014
SIGNED BY: Tim Kissner/Emilio Carrasquel/Illitch Salazar (Mariners)
MINORS: .263/.309/.406 | 2 HR | 5 SB | 175 AB
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Track Record: Hernandez was one of the more sought-after international prospects in 2014, when he signed with the Mariners for $1.85 million. He struggled in the Dominican Summer League in 2015, which led the Mariners to end his switch-hitting experiment. Seattle traded him and three others to the Marlins in July 2017 for David Phelps.

Scouting Report: A career .260 hitter with a 3-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio, Hernandez must continue to improve at the plate, especially when it comes to using the entire field and making solid contact against quality offspeed pitches. He has a level swing and generates solid bat speed with a knack for making contact, but he hasn’t produced much power in his career. That power could still materialize for Hernandez, who is 20 years old and still has projection left in his athletic frame. Hernandez could become a plus defensive center fielder with a strong arm. He shows good natural defensive instincts, while his plus speed plays up in the outfield and on the basepaths.

The Future: Hernandez should get his first extended look in full-season ball in 2018. He flashes all five tools but requires significant refinement.

Cristian Pache Brianwesterholt

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