BA Newsletter: Get Analysis, Rankings Delivered To Your Inbox!

MiLB Top 10 Prospects Flashback: 2010 California League

Hall of Famers Roberto Alomar (1986), Ken Griffey Jr. (1988) and Pedro Martinez (1991) starred in the high Class A California League on their way to the big leagues.

So too did future Hall of Famer Adrian Beltre (1996), future MVPs Miguel Tejada (1996) and Buster Posey (2009) and prodigious sluggers Mark McGwire (1985) and Gary Sheffield (1987).

Yet another future Hall of Famer played in the Cal League in 2010, when Mike Trout (No. 1) spent the second half of his full-season debut with Rancho Cucamonga. He hit .306/.388/.434 with 27 walks and 33 strikeouts in 50 games as a 19-year-old and “was the youngest and most talented player on the field.”

2010 California League Top 10 Prospects

1Mike TroutOFRancho CucamongaAngels5,51075.9
2Brandon Belt1BSan JoseGiants4,38221.9
3Grant GreenSSStocktonAthletics353-1.1
4Tyler ChatwoodRHPRancho CucamongaAngels84710.9
5Engel BeltreOFBakersfieldRangers42-0.1
6Jonathan VillarSSLancasterAstros3,1927.9
7Jaff DeckerOFLake ElsinorePadres191-1.3
8Aaron MillerRHPInland EmpireDodgers
9Juan NicasioRHPModestoRockies7203.1
10Patrick CorbinLHPVisaliaD-backs1,20620.5

Making his pro debut in the Cal League, first baseman Brandon Belt (No. 2) hit .383 with 10 homers in 77 games in a season he finished at Triple-A. He altered his swing after turning pro to “now stands more upright and doesn’t cut off his swing.” Belt showed in 2010 that “most of his current power goes to the opposite field,” and he continued to use all fields when he reached San Francisco.

Shortstop Jonathan Villar (No. 6) had “quick hands but a long swing” and would be “better off working to get on base and using his plus speed to create havoc.”

The Cal League’s reputation as a hitter’s league tended to work against pitching prospects, both in terms of performance and assignment, though Martinez and Felix Hernandez (2004) were notable exceptions.

California League All-Time BA No. 1 Prospects

Players listed with career major league plate appearances/innings and FanGraphs WAR. Stats for active players current through mid August.

1981George HinshawOFRenoPadres350.2
1982Kevin McReynoldsOFRenoPadres6,03927.6
1983Bill WegmanRHPStocktonBrewers1,48317.0
1984Glenn BraggsOFStocktonBrewers2,6096.3
1985Jeff ParrettRHPStocktonBrewers7254.1
1986Todd StottlemyreRHPVenturaBlue Jays2,19226.9
1987Gary SheffieldSSStocktonBrewers10,94762.1
1988Ken Griffey Jr.OFSan BernardinoMariners11,30477.7
1989Jose OffermanSSBakersfieldDodgers6,58213.9
1990Rich GarcesRHPVisaliaTwins3414.0
1991Pedro MartinezRHPBakersfieldDodgers2,82790.0
1992Ray McDavidOFHigh DesertPadres48-0.3
1993John BurkeRHPCentral ValleyRockies75-0.3
1994Jose HerreraOFModestoAthletics423-1.2
1995Darin ErstadOFLake ElsinoreAngels6,62828.6
1996Miguel TejadaSSModestoAthletics9,20539.7
1997Travis Lee1BHigh DesertD-backs4,2337.0
1998Brad PennyRHPHigh DesertD-backs1,92522.2
1999Chin-Feng ChenOFSan BernardinoDodgers25-0.1
2000Antonio PerezSSLancasterMariners5570.3
2001Dennis TankersleyRHPLake ElsinorePadres86-2.0
2002Rocco BaldelliOFBakersfieldRays2,0658.0
2003Casey Kotchman1BRancho CucamongaAngels3,4121.9
2004Felix HernandezRHPInland EmpireMariners2,73056.9
2005Brandon WoodSSRancho CucamongaAngels751-3.0
2006Reid BrignacSSVisaliaRays951-0.8
2007Justin UptonOFVisaliaD-backs7,13536.0
2008Trevor CahillRHPStocktonAthletics1,45114.6
2009Buster PoseyCSan JoseGiants5,15352.7
2010Mike TroutOFRancho CucamongaAngels5,37274.4
2011Tyler SkaggsLHPVisaliaD-backs5214.5
2012Billy HamiltonSSBakersfieldReds3,11110.1
2013Addison RussellSSStocktonAthletics2,2129.4
2014Carlos CorreaSSLancasterAstros2,46319.4
2015Sean NewcombLHPInland EmpireAngels3464.5
2016Ryan CastellaniRHPModestoRockies140.4
2017Brendan RodgersSSLancasterRockies88-0.7
2018Jo AdellOFInland EmpireAngels41-0.6
2019MacKenzie GoreLHPLake ElsinorePadres
2021 MLB Seasonpreview

2021 MLB Season Preview: World Series Predictions, Burning Questions & More

Baseball America's annual preseason MLB predictions, which includes 10 burning questions to answer as the season gets underway.

of Free Stories Remaining