Join Today! Become A Baseball America Insider

Top MLB Prospects Hot Sheet (7/1/19)

Wander_Franco_TomDiPace.jpg
Wander Franco (Photo by Tom DiPace)

Welcome back to the Hot Sheet, which ranks the 20 hottest prospects from the previous week. This installment of the Prospect Hot Sheet considers what minor league players did from June 24-30. Contributing this week were Josh Norris, J.J. Cooper and Justin Coleman. 

Remember, this simply recognizes what the hottest prospects in the minors did in the past week—it’s not a re-ranking of the Baseball America Top 100 Prospects.


1. Wander Franco, SS, Rays
Team: High Class A Charlotte (Florida State)
Age: 18
Why He’s Here: .556/.609/.944 (10-for-18), 4 R, 1 2B, 0 3B, 2 HR, 6 RBIs, 4 BB, 0 SO, 1-for-3 SB

The Scoop: After scorching the Midwest League for half a season, the Rays promoted Franco to high Class A on June 25. In five games, he has walked as many times (4) as he’s swung and missed. He’s also scored as many times as he’s swung and missed. He’s got six more hits than he has swings and misses. He’s younger than every player on this year’s USA Baseball's Collegiate National Team, and he’s already in the Florida State League. If the start to his tenure with Charlotte is any indication, he’s going to have no trouble reaching Double-A just after turning 19 years old. (JN)


2. MacKenzie Gore, LHP, Padres
Team: High Class A Lake Elsinore (Padres)
Age: 20
Why He’s Here: 1-0, 0.00, 6.2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 9 SO, 1 BB, 0 HR

The Scoop: Gore was one of three Padres prospects named to the upcoming Futures Game, and he pitched like it this week. His outing on June 26 was his second consecutive with nine strikeouts, and his fifth start with at least that many. He’s one of the best pitching prospects in the minors, and he appears ready to shine on All-Star Sunday. (JN)


3. Yonathan Daza, OF, Rockies
Team: Triple-A Albuquerque (Pacific Coast)
Age: 25
Why He's Here: .438/.471/.688 (14-for-32), 7 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBIs, 1 BB, 2 SO

The Scoop: In his first stint in the major leagues, Daza was 1-for-18. But after being sent back to Albuquerque, Daza has been everything a team could look for in a table-setting leadoff hitter. He's hitting .380, good for second-best in the Pacific Coast League (yes, .380 is only good for second-best in the PCL this year because Corban Joseph is hitting .391) while playing his typical excellent defense in center field. His first taste of the majors was rough, but he should get several more chances. (JJ)


4. Deivi Garcia, RHP, Yankees
Team: Double-A Trenton (Eastern)
Age: 20
Why He’s Here: 1-0, 0.00, 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 9 SO, 2 BB, 0 HR

The Scoop: It’s not often that someone listed at 5-foot-9 and 163 pounds can get cast as the bully, but since reaching Double-A on May 1, Garcia has done nothing but grab his opponents by the throat and demand their lunch money. He’s whiffed 76 hitters in 47 innings with Trenton, and this week pitched the first five innings of his team’s combined no-hitter over Reading. (JN)


5. Tarik Skubal, RHP, Tigers

Team: High Class A Lakeland (Florida State)

Age: 22

Why He’s Here: 0-0, 0.00, 7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 SO

The Scoop: Skubal is continuing his dominance of the Florida State League this season, allowing just one earned run in the month of June. The righthander sits in the low 90s but touches 97 mph with his fastball, and he is throwing his secondary offerings more consistently for strikes. His feel for a changeup and ability to mix pitches has kept batters off-balance all season. 
(JC)


6. Dom Thompson-Williams, OF, Mariners
Team: Double-A Arkansas (Texas)
Age: 24
Why He’s Here: .545/.615/1.091 (6-for-11), 1 R, 3 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 4 RBIs, 2 BB, 2 SO

The Scoop: Thompson-Williams was the third piece the Mariners received from the Yankees in the James Paxton deal, and he’s showed flashes this year of the tool set that intrigued the Mariners. He’s got power and speed, which has showed up with eight home runs and 13 stolen bases in his first taste of Double-A. (JN)


7. Ian Anderson, RHP, Braves
Team: Double-A Mississippi (Southern)
Age: 21
Why He's Here: 1-0, 0.00, 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 14 SO, 1 HBP

The Scoop: Anderson authored one of the more dominating pitching performances of the season as he combined with Jeremy Walker to no-hit a very solid Mobile lineup that included Pavin Smith, Daulton Varsho, Drew Ellis and Jazz Chisholm. Anderson spotted his 92-93 mph fastball precisely and got Mobile to swing at a lot of buried two-strike curveballs. His changeup has improved to the point where it is a plus pitch, which gave him three plus pitches to carve up the BayBears. (JJ)

8. Ibandel Isabel, 1B, Reds

Team: Double-A Chattanooga (Southern League)
Age: 24 

Why He’s Here: .360/.385/.800 (9-for-25), 7 R, 2 2B, 0 3B, 3 HR, 8 RBIs, 1 BB, 6 SO

The Scoop: Isabel has fared well against pitching in the upper minors, using his plus-plus power to blast three home runs this past week. The infielder is starting to make more contact and has compiled an 10-game hit streak. 


(JC)


9. Sixto Sanchez, RHP, Marlins
Team: Double-A Jacksonville (Southern League)

Age: 20

Why He’s Here: 0-1, 1.29, 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10 SO



The Scoop: Sanchez had his strikeout stuff working against Montgomery, fanning double-digits for the first time this season. His control numbers have been improving, as this was just his second start of the season where he walked more than one batter.


 (JC)


10. Blake Rutherford, OF, White Sox
Team: Double-A Birmingham 
Age: 22
Why He’s Here: .423/.444/.615 (11-for-26), 2 R, 0 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 7 RBIs, 1 BB, 8 SO, 0-for-1 SB

The Scoop: This week is only an extension of the excellent month Rutherford has put together. In June, the 22-year-old is slashing an excellent .365/.400/.471 with a homer and 12 RBIs. Scouts still see feel to hit and power potential in Rutherford’s bat, which may help him profile in a corner-outfield spot as he develops. (JN)


11. Luis Frias, RHP, Dbacks

Team: Short-season Hillsboro (Northwest) 

Age: 21

Why He’s Here: 1-0, 1.80 ERA, 10 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 18 SO

The Scoop: Frias is pitching well once again in his return to the Northwest League. The D-backs' No. 22 prospect struggled with his control in his first outing of the week, allowing three free passes, but he didn’t allow a walk in his second outing against Eugene, throwing 50 of his 71 pitches for strikes. 
(JC)


12. Cristian Pache, OF, Braves
Team: Double-A Mississippi (Southern)
Age: 20
Why He’s Here: .296/.355/.704 (8-for-27), 6 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 7 RBIs, 2 BB, 3 SO

The Scoop: Fresh off being named to the Futures Game, Pache has continued to build on his stellar season. After entering the season with nine home runs in 298 career games, Pache has swatted 11 long balls in 75 games with Double-A Mississippi. The jump from high Class A to Double-A is often one of the biggest tests in the minor leagues. So far, Pache is passing with high marks. (JN)


13. Ty France, 3B, Padres
Team: Triple-A El Paso (Pacific Coast)
Age: 24
Why He's Here: .450/.520/1.050 (9-for-20), 8 R, 3 2B, 3 HR, 9 RBIs, 3 BB, 2 SO

The Scoop: Because he's stuck in El Paso with no clear path back to San Diego this year barring injury, there's a chance for France to author one of the great minor league seasons of the 21st century. France is currently hitting .391 with 19 home runs and an amazing 1.328 OPS. France has had at least one extra-base hit in 25 of his 40 games with El Paso. (JJ)


14. Braden Shewmake, SS, Braves
Team: Low Class A Rome (South Atlantic)
Age: 21
Why He's Here: .464/.483/.750 (13-for-28), 5 2B, 1 HR, 6 RBIs, 1 BB, 5 SO, 1 SB

The Scoop: There's something valuable about making a good first impression in pro ball. Since taking an 0-for-3 on June 20 in his pro debut, Shewmake has a nine-game hitting streak that includes seven multi-hit games. In a Braves organization that is now very thin in middle infield prospects, Shewmake is easily the top shortstop prospect. (JJ)


Wander_Franco_BradKrauseFourSeam.jpg

2019 Minor League Baseball Classification All-Stars

Picking Player of the Year, Pitcher of the Year and all-stars from every level of the minors.

15. Trevor Rogers, LHP, Marlins
Team: High Class A Jupiter (Florida State) 
Age: 21 
Why He’s Here: 1-0, 0.00, 8 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 SO



The Scoop: Rogers didn’t have to sweat much against Bradenton, working around just three baserunners in his eight frames. Rogers filled up the strike zone and managed to complete eight innings for the first time this season. If he keeps it up, Rogers should be looking at facing hitters in the upper minors sooner rather than later.








 (JC)


16. Matthew Liberatore, LHP, Rays
Team: Low Class A Bowling Green (Midwest)
Age: 19
Why He’s Here: 1-0, 0.00, 7 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 10 SO, 1 BB, 0 HR

The Scoop: There are scouts who will tell you that Bowling Green is the best low Class A team they’ve ever seen. Wander Franco inspired a great deal of that awe, but by no means was he the only attraction. Liberatore is one of a cadre of impressive arms in the Hot Rods’ rotation, and his combination of stuff and poise makes him the Rays’ best pitching prospect in the minor leagues now that Brendan McKay has made his debut in the big leagues. (JN)


17. Jeremy Eierman, SS, Athletics

Team: High Class A Stockton

Age: 22

Why He’s Here:  .280/.357/.680 (7-for-25), 0 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 2 BB, 9 SO, 2-for-2 SB

The Scoop: Oakland’s No. 11 prospect is continuing to show power, surpassing his home run total from last season (8). While this season has been rough offensively for Eierman, he managed to put together a four-game hit streak with two multi-hit performances this past week. 
(JC)


18. Braxton Garrett, LHP, Marlins
Team: High Class A (Florida State)
Age: 21
Why He's Here: 1-0, 0.00, 7 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 11 SO

The Scoop: Garrett has made a solid return after missing most of 2017 and all of 2018 because of Tommy John surgery. He doesn't generally blow hitters away, but a lefty with a 90-94 mph fastball, a curveball he can locate and a changeup that shows plenty of promise has a chance to be a solid starter. (JJ)


19. Cal Raleigh, C, Mariners
Team: High Class A Modesto (California)
Age: 22
Why He's Here: .368/.500/.895 (7-for-19), 7 R, 1 2B, 3 HR, 6 RBIs, 5 BB, 4 SO, 2-for-2 SB

The Scoop: The Mariners gave Raleigh an aggressive assignment this spring as they skipped him over low Class A to send him to the California League in his first full pro season. After acclimating himself over the first two months of the season, Raleigh showed signs of catching up to the league in June, hitting .284/.362/.556 with six home runs. Raleigh's power is his calling card. His recent power spike now has him tied for fourth in the California League with 13 home runs. (JJ)


20. Garrett Williams, LHP, Giants
Team: Double-A Richmond (Eastern)
Age: 24
Why He's Here: 1-0, 0.00, 1 GS, 7 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 9 SO

The Scoop: The Giants took a chance on upside in the 2016 draft, and then they've traded most of that upside away. Left without a first-round pick, the club selected Bryan Reynolds in the second round and watched him live up to their expectations—but he was traded away for Andrew McCutchen. Fourth-rounder Matt Krook and eighth-rounder Stephen Woods were a pair of high-risk, high-reward college pitchers with plenty of stuff but control concerns. They both were traded to the Rays in the Evan Longoria trade. But San Francisco has held on to Williams, a high-risk, high-reward starter out of Oklahoma State. He's still wild and his walk rate remains at a troubling 4.8 walks per nine innings, but when he locates, he can be tough to square up. In June, Williams has allowed only 16 hits in 32 innings while posting a 1.67 ERA in six starts. (JJ)


Helium


Ali Sanchez, C, Mets

Sanchez has been known as a premium defender throughout his time in the minor leagues and is starting to put things together offensively. He hasn’t hit for much power, but his .301/.360/.373 shows clear improvement with the bat. His receiving ability behind home plate and uptick in offensive prowess against pitching in the upper minors create a path for him to reach the big leagues as a backup type. (JC)

Are you a member?

In order to access this exclusive content you must have a Baseball America Account. 

Login or sign up  

of Free Stories Remaining