League Top 20 Prospects

California League Top 20 Prospects List

Talent at the top, but depth drops off quickly

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1. Reid Brignac, ss, Visalia (Devil Rays)
2. Carlos Gonzalez, of, Lancaster (Diamondbacks)
3. Franklin Morales, lhp, Modesto (Rockies)
4. Nick Adenhart, rhp,  Rancho Cucamonga (Angels)
5. Eric Hurley, rhp, Bakersfield (Rangers)
6. Travis Buck, of, Stockton (Athletics)
7. Jose Arredondo, rhp, Rancho Cucamonga (Angels)
8. Greg Reynolds, rhp, Modesto (Rockies)
9. Greg Smith, lhp, Lancaster (Diamondbacks)
10. Jonathan Herrera, ss, Modesto (Rockies)
11. Emilio Bonifacio, 2b, Lancaster (Diamondbacks)
12. Sean Rodriguez, ss, Rancho Cucamonga (Angels)
13. Mark Reynolds, if, Lancaster (Diamondbacks)
14. Ben Harrison,  of, Bakersfield (Rangers)
15. Landon Powell, c, Stockton (Athletics)
16. Yung Chi Chen, 2b, Inland Empire (Mariners)
17. Fernando Perez, of, Visalia (Devil Rays)
18. Samuel Deduno, rhp, Modesto (Rockies)
19. Cesar Ramos, lhp, Lake Elsinore (Rockies)
20. Chase Headley, 3b, Lake Elsinore (Padres)
A year after Brandon Wood, Stephen Drew and Howie Kendrick headlined a banner class in the high Class A California League, the talent level dipped quite a bit in 2006. There were a few very good prospects at the top of the league--namely 20-year-old sluggers Reid Brignac and Carlos Gonzalez and 20-year-old righthanders Franklin Morales, Nick Adenhart and Eric Hurley--but there were plenty of question marks after that.

Depth of talent was severely lacking, as there were just five position players whom a consensus of scouts and managers projected as future big league regulars. Besides Brignac and Gonzalez, that group included Stockton outfielder Travis Buck, Modesto shortstop Jonathan Herrera and Lancaster second baseman Emilio Bonifacio.

The league received an infusion of talent from the draft, as No. 2 overall pick Greg Reynolds, No. 3 choice Evan Longoria and No. 10 selection Tim Lincecum reached high Class A in a hurry.

Among that trio, only Reynolds qualified for this list, as Longoria quickly smashed his way to Double-A and Lincecum's strict pitch count kept him from reaching the minimum innings threshold. Both Longoria and Lincecum would have been locks for the top 10 and made strong cases for the top five had they qualified.Though neither Lancaster nor Modesto made the playoffs, they tied for the league high with four prospects on this Top 20 list. They featured the league's two breakthrough performers, Herrera and JetHawks infielder Mark Reynolds.
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