2023 Top 20 Florida Complex League Prospects


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The 2023 Florida Complex League was absolutely loaded, especially when it came to the teams with parent clubs in New York. Even before the season began, scouts who saw extended spring training were gushing over the concentration of talent on the Yankees’ roster, starting with five-tool shortstop Roderick Arias and a rotation headed by 6-foot-7 upside monsters Henry Lalane and Carlos Lagrange. The club also featured do-it-all infielder Keiner Delgado and outfielder John Cruz, who at 17 years old finished tied for second in the league in home runs.

The Mets’ team got a boost of talent at the trade deadline when the David Robertson deal sent prospects Marco Vargas and Ronald Hernandez to the big apple. Vargas had some of the best bat-to-ball skills in the league and Hernandez showed offensive upside and leadership qualities behind the dish.

The league’s top prospect was Twins outfielder Walker Jenkins, who was the fifth overall pick in the 2023 draft and has the potential to be a five-tool superstar in Minnesota a few years from now.

To qualify for this list, a prospect must have had 50 at-bats or 15 innings pitched.

All ages are as of Sept. 13, 2023.

1. Walker Jenkins, OF, Twins

Age: 18. B-T: L-R. Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 210. Acquired: 2023 1st Round.

The fifth overall pick lived up to his reputation in his short stint in the FCL. Jenkins reached base in all but one of the 14 games he played before the season closed and he moved up to Low-A and clocked two home runs—including a grand slam—as part of a .927 OPS. The sweet-swinging lefthander has the potential to be a true five-tool talent with plus or better hittability, power and arm strength. He’s one of the most talented prep players to come out of North Carolina in recent memory and stands as one of the best prospects not only in the Twins’ system but in the entire sport.

FCL Twins.333.390.5375459618312125842

2. Roderick Arias, SS, Yankees

Age: 19. B-T: B-R. Ht.: 6-0. Wt.: 178. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Arias was one of the top players available in the 2022 international signing period but had his pro debut in the DSL muted by a wrist injury. In his first stateside test, the 18-year-old shortstop blew away scouts with a complete package of five tools that could make him a fixture of the Yankees’ lineup in a few seasons. Scouts were universal in their assessment of Arias as a player who could stick at shortstop and produce impact power to all sectors. He has an innate feel for the barrel, a throwing arm that grades as at least double-plus and the athleticism for at least above-average speed. Before a broken pinkie ended his season, Arias was far and away the best player on a Yankees squad that scouts unanimously pegged as one of the most talented in the league in recent memory.

FCL Yankees.267.423.5051011303227226262729176

3. Luis Baez, OF, Astros

Age: 19. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 205. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Baez was Houston’s top signing in the 2022 international class and bullied his way out of the FCL in short order this season. The powerfully built outfielder lasted just 19 games in the league before being promoted to Low-A Fayetteville. At both stops, Baez has shown massive raw power that grades as at least plus and the ability to get to it in games. He may have to tweak his mechanics to get better direction with his stride, but the ingredients are there for a thumper in the middle of the order. Baez has the arm strength for right field, but there are questions about whether he’ll maintain enough athleticism as he matures and adds strength to his already-muscular frame.

FCL Astros.271.434.6615976101620715161411

4. Henry Lalane, LHP, Yankees

Age: 19. B-T: L-L. Ht.: 6-7. Wt.: 211. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2021.

Lalane signed in 2021 and spent two seasons in the DSL before moving stateside in 2023. All summer long, he impressed scouts with his combination of pitchability, stuff, athleticism and demeanor on the mound. He operates with a fastball in the low-to-mid 90s and backs it with a full complement of offspeed offerings. Both of his breaking balls have flashed plus, as has his changeup, and scouts differ on which of the trio is the best of the bunch. Lalane’s sublime coordination of his 6-foot-7 frame led to a repeatable delivery and stellar control, which helped him walk just four hitters in 21.2 innings.

FCL Yankees104.57821.21712113434.2077.11.714.1

5. Marco Vargas, 2B, Mets

Age: 18. B-T: L-R. Ht.: 6-0. Wt.: 170. Acquired: Traded from Marlins to Mets with C Ronald Hernandez for RHP David Robertson, July 28, 2023.

Vargas was one half of the package the Marlins used to acquire closer David Robertson from the Mets. The 18-year-old was a low-dollar signing in Miami’s international class of 2022 and spent the last two seasons showing excellent bat-to-ball skills and a strong knowledge of the strike zone. He was one of the purest hitters in the FCL and more juice than his two home runs might suggest. He’s a solid but unspectacular defender at second base who will catch most balls hit his way but might not make many highlight-reel plays. Vargas’ arm is just fringe-average, but his overall package could lead to a future as an offensive-minded second baseman.

FCL Marlins/Mets.269.434.40116721941451412244831102

6. Santiago Suarez, RHP, Rays

Age: 18. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 175. Acquired: Rays acquired from Marlins with RHP Marcus Johnson for RHP JT Chargois and SS Xavier Edwards.

Suarez came to Tampa Bay in Dec. 2022 as part of the package that Miami used to acquire Xavier Edwards. At the time of the deal, he was one of the most intriguing low-level arms in Miami’s system, and he spent his stateside debut establishing himself as one of the best pitchers in the FCL. The righthander primarily utilizes a combination of a 93-95 mph fastball and a high-70s curveball that scouts project as plus. He has a mid-80s changeup as well, though it is not nearly as developed as the rest of his arsenal. Suarez pounds the zone relentlessly—counting his FCL numbers and two Low-A starts, he’d produced a nearly 80% strike rate—with his mix. He has the ceiling of at least a back-end starter and could be more with further development of his changeup.

FCL Rays401.131039.228550838.1996.41.88.6

7. Carlos Lagrange, RHP, Yankees

Age: 20. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-7. Wt.: 195. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Lagrange, who was signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2022, fits nicely into the Yankees’ archetype of powerful, intimidating righthanders with big fastballs. Lagrange’s heater sits in the upper 90s and regularly reaches triple-digits while showing excellent sinking and running life. He backs the fastball with a nasty, potentially plus slider and a changeup that could get to average. To stick in the rotation, Lagrange will have to polish his command significantly, but even if he winds up in the bullpen he has the stuff to be a force in the late innings.

FCL Yankees004.971241.234252342463.2147.35.213.6

8. Raylin Heredia, OF, Phillies

Age: 19. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-0. Wt.: 174. Acquired: Venezuela, 2021.

Heredia signed with Philadelphia out of Venezuela in 2021, when he was a sleeper in their international class. He made a brief cameo in the DSL that summer before returning to the league in 2022. Heredia made his stateside debut this year and showed a well-balanced skill set that helped him dot the FCL leaderboards. He’s got big-time bat speed and the potential to hit for both average and power if he can find a more consistent approach and get a bit better at recognizing pitches. He’s a plus runner and has average arm strength, both of which should help him stick in center field. If he cleans up his problem areas at the plate, he has a chance to be an everyday player.

FCL Phillies.326.415.532141164304694425174273

9. Johanfran Garcia, C, Red Sox

Age: 18. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 5-10. Wt.: 196. Acquired: Venezuela, 2022.

Garcia slots in as the best catching prospect in the league. The 18-year-old Venezuelan showed plenty of upside on both sides of the ball, and was particularly intriguing for his combination of hittability and all-fields power. He showed a solid knowledge of the strike zone and bat-to-ball skills, though his in-zone whiff rates might be a touch higher than is ideal and scouts noted his swing could get a bit long every now and then. Behind the plate, Garcia shows plus-plus arm strength but will need to watch his conditioning to assure he maintains the flexibility to stay behind the dish.

FCL Red Sox.302.408.4971491792145102532193731

10. Keiner Delgado, 2B, Yankees

Age: 19. B-T: B-R. Ht.: 5-7. Wt.: 145. Acquired: Venezuela, 2021.

Delgado was one of the best performers among the Yankees’ crop in the DSL a season ago, and he repeated the feat in his stateside debut. Scouts raved about Delgado’s combination of production and makeup, which should carry him to plenty of at-bats in the big leagues. He’s got outstanding bat-to-ball skills and enough just to maybe get to fringe-average if he gets stronger. Delgado turns in above-average run times that are a tick better underway and are amplified by outstanding instincts on the bases. He’ll likely slot in at second base, where he’ll handle the routine plays thanks to average range and fringe-average arm strength.

FCL Yankees.293.414.48519823954581218313631367

11. Yordanny Monegro, RHP, Red Sox

Age: 20. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-4. Wt.: 180. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2020.

Monegro has improved his stock tremendously year over year. In 2022, the righthander was nondescript and did not catch scouts’ eyes. This season, his velocity has ticked way up to the point where he can sit in the mid 90s a touch a few notches higher. He complements the fastball with a pair of potentially plus breaking balls that give him weapons against both righties and lefties. Monegro tossed the bare minimum 15 innings to qualify for this list and was old for the level but has proven himself by continuing to perform after moving to Low-A.

FCL Red Sox201.203155220420.1023.02.412.0

12. Braylin Tavera, OF, Orioles

Age: 18. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 175. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Tavera was signed in 2022 and posted a so-so season in the DSL. His production improved this year in the FCL, and scouts see a player with the potential to be a five-tool prospect in center field. He’s got the plus speed and instincts—as well as an average arm—to stick up the middle and at least have some defensive impact. He hits the ball hard when he makes contact but will have to shore up his hit tool just a little bit. He has sound swing decisions but parts of his swing will have to be improved to continue making quality contact as he climbs the ladder.

FCL Orioles.262.391.4211071331528504202223135

13. Fernando Perez, RHP, Blue Jays

Age: 19. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 170. Acquired: Nicaragua, 2022.

Perez, who hails from Nicaragua, signed as a part of Toronto’s 2022 international class and spent his first pro season in the DSL, where he posted a strikeout-to-walk rate of nearly 10-to-1. He continued to miss bats in 2023 in the FCL, where he led the league in ERA (2.72) and finished tied for second in strikeouts (57). The righthander has a projectable frame and the ability to pound the zone with a mix of a fastball, slider and changeup. The fastball sits in the low 90s and has plenty of carry, while his changeup projects to be at least above-average and his slider could reach a 50 grade. If he maintains his body, he has excellent upside.

FCL Blue Jays222.721149.235171511257.1986.32.210.3

14. Luis De Leon, LHP, Orioles

Age: 20. B-T: L-L. Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 168. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2021.

De Leon signed in Dec. 2021 and was limited by injuries in his debut season in the DSL. This season, he’s raised his stock tremendously to the point where he was targeted by clubs in trades during the summer. The southpaw has big-time arm speed that he uses to sling heavy fastballs in the mid-90s that helped him induce grounders by the bushel in both the FCL and at Low-A Delmarva. He pairs the fastball with a changeup and slider that each could be fringe-average. There are some mechanical inconsistencies to iron out, but the Orioles have proved in recent years that they can get the best out of their pitchers.

FCL Orioles201.65627.1238501436.2307.64.611.9

15. Jesus Baez, SS, Mets

Age: 18. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 5-9. Wt.: 180. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Baez was part of the Mets’ 2022 international class and made an impression on evaluators for the way he impacted balls he caught on the barrel. To barrel the ball more often, he’ll have to improve his approach, which was too aggressive for some scouts’ taste. Baez has solid infield and soft hands, but he’s not the twitchiest player and appeared to get thicker as the season wore on. If he has to move off of shortstop, his plus arm and potentially plus power would profile well at third base.

FCL Mets.210.306.333138160182991217192852

16. John Cruz, OF, Yankees

Age: 18. B-T: L-L. Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 171. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Cruz was one of the youngest players in the FCL, spending the whole season as a 17-year-old. Despite his youth, he finished tied for second in the league in home runs (10). Scouts love Cruz’s body both at present and what they believe it will become as he matures. He has loud bat speed that should produce corner-profile power but he also will show a bit of a bat wrap that might hinder him as he moves up the ladder. Scouts believe he will show hittability and power and has an outside chance to play center field. If he moves over, his average speed and arm strength will be just fine in either corner.

FCL Yankees.294.376.5311772022852631047224494

17. Cristhian Vaquero, OF, Nationals

Age: 19. B-T: B-R. Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 180. Acquired: Cuba, 2022.

Vaquero was Washington’s top signing in the 2021-2022 international period and earned the highest bonus of anyone in the class. After getting his feet wet in the DSL in 2022, Vaquero moved stateside this season and was one of the best players in the league. Scouts lauded the 18-year-old Cuban for his well-rounded skill set, which included average or better tools across the board, including potential pluses for his speed and defense. He has the potential to be an above-average hitter and could get to average power as he adds strength to his frame. If everything comes together, he’ll fit toward the top of a batting order.

FCL Nationals.279.410.3931401823439921162935158

18. Leandro Arias, 2B, Orioles

Age: 18. B-T: B-R. Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 155. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Arias signed with Baltimore out of the Dominican Republic in 2022 and had a nondescript first pro season in the DSL. In his first season in the states, he upped his profile. Scouts reported a hitter with an excellent approach from both sides of the plate as well as the potential for plus raw power despite a smaller frame. Arias is likely to move off of shortstop, but his plus arm strength would fit well at either second or third base. He’s an aggressive hitter, which might get exploited at higher levels and could lead to a power-over-hit profile.

FCL Orioles.271.370.4141401621738723192020122

19. Ronald Hernandez, C, Mets

Age: 19. B-T: B-R. Ht.: 5-11. Wt.: 155. Acquired: Traded from Marlins to Mets with 2B Marco Vargas for RHP David Robertson, July 28, 2023.

Hernandez went from the Marlins to the Mets in the trade that sent David Robertson to Miami. The 19-year-old repeated the FCL and performed much better in his second go-round, showing a solid approach and bat-to-ball skills. He might not have big-time power, but that could change if he alters his swing. Hernandez will have to work to stick behind the plate, though he does show excellent leadership traits. He’ll flash solid receiving abilities, but he’s inconsistent in that area and will have to show a stronger arm and quicker transfer to be a weapon in the running game.

FCL Marlins/Mets.295.476.460139191334191436473741

20. Thomas Sosa, OF, Orioles

Age: 18. B-T: L-L/. Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 160. Acquired: Dominican Republic, 2022.

Sosa was part of a loaded Baltimore club and showed an intriguing mix of upside and production. Scouts saw a player with a solid approach and line-drive power that could amplify as he gets stronger. He saw time at all three outfield spots but mostly split his time between center field and right field. He’s a solid-average runner with the arm to fit in a corner if he has to move off center field permanently.

FCL Orioles.290.385.492124143263673425173154

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