If Every Team Was Homegrown 2019: AL West

Image credit: Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani (Masterpress/Getty Images)

We conclude our 2019 Homegrown Roster series with the AL West, looking at what the Angels, Astros, Athletics, Mariners and Rangers would look like if their 2019 clubs were made up entirely of homegrown players.

Here you can see our previous installments for the NL EastNL Central, NL West, AL East and AL Central.

Any player signed for entry into Major League Baseball is eligible to be listed with the team that signed them. Foreign professionals signed from Japan, Cuba, South Korea or other countries are included in addition to those players drafted and signed, signed as international amateurs or signed as undrafted free agents.

Players must have been active in 2018 and are scheduled to be active in 2019 to be eligible. Teams are listed in alphabetical order.


C Jason Castro
1B Yuli Gurriel
2B Jose Altuve
3B Alex Bregman
SS Carlos Correa
OF Ben Zobrist
OF Ramon Laureano
OF George Springer
DH J.D. Martinez

SP Dallas Keuchel
SP Lance McCullers Jr.
SP Mike Foltynewicz
SP Vince Velasquez
SP Daniel Mengden
RP Bud Norris

Honorable Mention: Kiké Hernandez, Delino Deshields Jr., Hunter Pence, Teoscar Hernandez, Brett Phillips, Josh James, Tony Kemp, Kyle Tucker, Tyler White, Nick Tropeano, Jordan Lyles.

Analysis: The Astros’ ability to identify and develop position players is in baseball’s top tier with the Cubs and Red Sox. Altuve, Correa, Bregman, Springer, Martinez, Zobrist, Pence and Castro give the Astros eight homegrown position players who became All-Stars, while Laureano, Gurriel and Kiké Hernandez are key contributors to playoff teams. The Astros’ homegrown pitching staff is lighter than their position group but still trumps the homegrown arms of the Red Sox and Cubs, especially with Foltynewicz’s breakthrough and Mengden’s progression in 2018. With their elite position player development and solid starting pitching development—and more potentially on the way with Kyle Tucker and Forrest Whitley—the Astros can lay claim to having the top organization in baseball at identifying and developing homegrown talent.


C Martin Maldonado
1B C.J. Cron
2B Howie Kendrick
3B Taylor Ward
SS Jean Segura
OF Randal Grichuk
OF Mike Trout
OF Kole Calhoun
DH Mark Trumbo

SP Shohei Ohtani
SP Patrick Corbin
SP Mike Clevinger
SP Sean Newcomb
SP Tyler Skaggs
RP Will Smith

Honorable Mention: Garrett Richards, Ervin Santana, Jaime Barria, Tyler Chatwood, Matt Shoemaker, Kendrys Morales, Keynan Middleton, Darren O’Day, Cam Bedrosian, Jeff Mathis, David Fletcher, Sean Rodriguez, Justin Anderson, Kaleb Cowart.

Analysis: For the second consecutive year, the Angels have arguably the most impressive track record of any team when it comes to identifying and developing starting pitching. In addition to their starting five, the Angels second starting five of Richards, Santana, Chatwood, Barria and Shoemaker is significantly stronger than most other teams’ top homegrown rotations. The Angels also have a strong track record of developing powerful first base/DH types (Cron, Trumbo, Morales) and outfielders, but holes in their infield development are noticeable. Kendrick was drafted in 2002, and Ward is the best of a very, very slim group of third base options. Second and third base have both been a revolving door for the Angels for years, a problem directly attributable to their struggles to identify and develop players at those positions.


C Kurt Suzuki
1B Matt Olson
2B Daniel Robertson
3B Matt Chapman
SS Addison Russell
OF Yoenis Cespedes
OF Chad Pinder
OF Billy McKinney
DH Max Muncy

SP Sonny Gray
SP Dan Straily
SP Trevor Cahill
SP Tyson Ross
SP Heath Fillmyer
RP Sean Doolittle

Honorable Mention: Ryon Healy, Blake Treinen, Lou Trivino, Daniel Gossett Ryan Dull, Bruce Maxwell, Yairo Munoz, Cliff Pennington, Max Stassi

Analysis: In line with their history, the Athletics have an impressive track record of finding and developing power prospects. Olson, Chapman, Muncy and Healy are all homegrown mashers who were drafted by the A’s, while Cespedes was signed out of Cuba. The A’s have had no problem finding and developing infielders, but outfielders have been a problem. Pinder and McKinney, both bench/platoon types, are the best of their homegrown outfielders. The A’s have enough homegrown starters to fill out a rotation, but there is little to no depth beyond the starting five. Their best hope is that A.J. Puk returns successfully from his Tommy John surgery to enhance their homegrown pitching track record.


C Mike Zunino
1B Ji-Man Choi
2B Asdrubal Cabrera
3B Kyle Seager
SS Ketel Marte
OF Chris Taylor
OF Adam Jones
OF Tyler O’Neill
DH Shin-Soo Choo

SP James Paxton
SP Taijuan Walker
SP Michael Pineda
SP Felix Hernandez
SP Freddy Peralta
RP Edwin Diaz

Honorable Mention: Brandon Morrow, Luiz Gohara, Enyel De Los Santos, Ryan Yarbrough, John Hicks, Brad Miller, Guillermo Heredia, Pablo Lopez, J.C. Ramirez, Shawn Kelley, Josh Fields, Carson Smith, Roenis Elias.

Analysis: What stands out about the Mariners’ best homegrown position players is that only two of them—Hernandez and Seager—play for the team anymore. Jones, Cabrera, Choo, O’Neill and Peralta and were all traded as prospects, Marte, Taylor, Walker, Pineda were all traded at 25 or younger, and Choi was let leave as a free agent at 24. That steady stream of young talent departing the organization left it perilously short on depth for more than a decade and is the primary factor in the Mariners owning the longest postseason drought in North American professional sports. The top remaining homegrown survivors—Paxton, Diaz and Zunino—were all traded this offseason as the club embarked on a rebuild.


C Jorge Alfaro
1B Justin Smoak
2B Rougned Odor
3B Joey Gallo
SS Jurickson Profar
OF Nick Williams
OF Odubel Herrera
OF Nomar Mazara
DH Edwin Encarnacion

SP Yu Darvish
SP Kyle Hendricks
SP Tanner Roark
SP Derek Holland
SP Martin Perez
RP Carl Edwards

Honorable Mention: Mitch Moreland, Ian Kinsler, Chris Davis, Edinson Volquez, Tommy Hunter, Lewis Brinson, Manny Pina, Jesse Chavez, Leonys Martin, Leury Garcia, Craig Gentry, Keone Kela, Alex Claudio, Isiah Kiner-Falefa.

Analysis: Power remains the tool the Rangers are the strongest at identifying and developing, with sluggers Gallo, Davis, Smoak, Moreland and Encarnacion among their homegrown successes and Odor, Mazara, Herrera and Profar all having 20-home run seasons to their names as well. Two-thirds of the Rangers’ best homegrown position players were signed as international free agents, a testament to their strong Latin American scouting operation. While the Rangers have had some success identifying and developing pitchers, none of their best have been drafted or signed since 2012—and that was Darvish, an accomplished Japanese professional when he signed. The Rangers’ drought when it comes to homegrown pitching is directly attributable to them having the third-worst ERA in the majors last year.

Comments are closed.

Download our app

Read the newest magazine issue right on your phone