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Josh Norris MLB Prospects Chat (7/20/21)

Orelvis Martinez (Photo by Mike Janes/Four Seam)

Josh Norris: It is chat time. Therefore, we shall chat.

Niko (Seattle):

    Are JROD and Luciano the new 1 and 2 on the top 100 in 2022? Or do Adley and or Tork steal those spots?

Josh Norris: I cannot tell you how our various debates will shake out because there's quite a bit more season to go, but I can tell you that right now we are in the process of assembling our midseason Top 100. As part of those exercises, some of us are submitting personal Top 100s. My top two right now (subject to change!) are Julio Rodriguez and ... Bobby Witt Jr.

DB (Ohio):

    Who are some of the lower level prospects, or lesser known names, you expect to pop offensively, and rise up prospect ranks this season?

Josh Norris: If we're counting the portion of the season already completed, then I would consider Gabriel Moreno at the very top of the heap of guys who have risen this year. Before his injury, the reviews on him were absurd in all capital letters, 72-point font, bolded and underlined.

Steve (SF):

    With the hot start at such a young age, was there any consideration given to Aeverson Arteaga? Or is he closer to the Helium section than the top twenty?

Josh Norris: Arteaga's big day was yesterday, which would fall under this coming week's Hot Sheet period. If it had counted for this week, he probably would have made it.

Dan (Lansing):

    Max Meyer is posting a fantastic 1.65 ERA and 1.15 WHIP but with a 4.2 bb/9. I feel the high walk total would be more acceptable if he were posting gaudier strikeout numbers. 8.7 k/9 is respectable no doubt but for a guy with plus-plus fastball and slider I was expecting more dominance in that regard. My question is do you think the combination of those 2 things will catch up to him at higher levels and possibly limit his overall ceiling or am I just nitpicking at a relatively small sample size of just 60 IP? Thanks in advance.

Josh Norris: Scouts have been relatively unimpressed with Meyer, despite the numbers. In fact, some have rotation-mate Jake Eder as the better of the two prospects. Meyer's stuff has not looked the same as it did in college, particularly in the case of his slider.

Adam (Bluff City, TN):

    Has Wander Franco gone from 100% first ballot Hall of Famer to a 99.6% first ballot Hall of Famer?

Josh Norris: I will not speak to his Hall of Fame chances (although I will be eligible to vote for the HoF by then) but I will say my confidence in Franco has not wavered one iota based on what he's done in the big leagues. He's the same age as a college sophomore and he's in the big leagues in the middle of a pennant race. He'll be just fine.

Zak (Boston):

    Who do you like more as a prospect; Garrett Mitchell or Sal Frelick?

Josh Norris: I do not follow the draft as closely as most of the rest of the staff, but I will say I absolutely love Garrett Mitchell as a prospect. Give me the super toolsy guy all day, every day and let's see if he can't turn those tools into skills.

Greg (Yorba Linda):

    How do you rate the three young Giants OF prospects in San Jose: Matos, Pomares and Canario? Do you think any of the three will be a top 50 prospect in the next year of 2?

Josh Norris: Matos, Canario, Pomares. I think Matos could be in the Top 50 in a year or two.

Ryan (Detroit):

    Do you think Jake Burger has what it takes to stay with the big club in Chicago?

Josh Norris: I sure do. Remember, this dude was a first-rounder. He's plenty talented but had fallen on obvious hard times. He also has extraordinary makeup, which you can see in his ability to persevere through all the injuries. He and Cole Ragans are two of the best stories in the minor leagues.

Adam (Bluff City, TN):

    Is Josh Lowe surging up prospect rankings? Does he have elite defensive potential? He seems to have developed into a 5-tool player and if not for the Rays depth, would have a spot on their active roster.

Josh Norris: I certainly like him a lot. He's got tools for days and has performed very well at Triple-A, first as part of a strong group of prospects with Wander Franco, Vidal Brujan and Taylor Walls, and now as more of a starring attraction in the Bulls' lineup. He's very intriguing.

Billie Ray (San Antonio):

    Justin Foscue seems like he has a complete hitter profile. With 2nd base feeling like a thin position of depth across the league, can Justin Foscue be the top 2nd base prospect in baseball?

Josh Norris: Not to me. That's probably Vidal Brujan (who plays all over), followed by Nick Gonzales with the Pirates.

Tommy (Hilton Head, SC):

    Have any pitching prospects at lower levels raised their ultimate ceiling to a potential #1, FOTR, Bonafide ace? I know how rare they are, it’s okay to say no one has. But is there buzz internally at BA about a player or two that could become that?

Josh Norris: George Kirby with the Mariners has opened eyes across the sport with his performance at High-A Everett and could fit into those categories.

Bob (Cleveland):

    Thanks for taking my question...rodolfo Castro was having a very productive season at AA and was called up to MLB for a short time and sent down to AA even though he was productive. What are the expectations of Castro going forward at this point? Lastly, simeon woods Richards struggled before departing for olympics. Are there any worries here?

Josh Norris: I like Rodolfo Castro a lot. There's legit power there and I could see him sticking up there for good one day.

Trey (Seaside Fl):

    What are your thoughts On SF Giants outfielders Heath Quinn and Jairo Pomares? Could Pomares be a Top 100 prospect? Is Jake Wong coming back this year?

Josh Norris: Heath Quinn is an organizational player at this point, but Pomares should be in the Top 15 of their system as a guy who can really hit.

Josh Norris: That's it for me this week. Thanks for the questions.

Ricky Tiedemann Photo By Ronald Martinez Getty Images

2023 Blue Jays Top 10 Prospects Podcast

Geoff Pontes joins Kyle Glaser to break down the Toronto Blue Jays farm system.

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