League Top 20 Prospects

Carolina League Top 20 Prospects

CL's hot corner was filled with hot prospects

See also: Carolina League Top 20 Prospects With Scouting Reports Premium

1. Jason Heyward, of, Myrtle Beach (Braves)
2. Brian Matusz, lhp, Frederick (Orioles)
3. Pedro Alvarez, 3b, Lynchburg (Pirates)
4. Freddie Freeman, 1b, Myrtle Beach (Braves)
5. Lonnie Chisenhall, 3b, Kinston (Indians)
6. Casey Kelly, rhp, Salem (Red Sox)
7. Mike Montgomery, lhp, Wilmington (Royals)
8. Mike Moustakas, 3b, Wilmington (Royals)
9. Ryan Kalish, of, Salem (Red Sox)
10. Danny Espinosa, ss, Potomac (Nationals)
11. Danny Duffy, lhp, Wilmington (Royals)
12. Anthony Rizzo, 1b, Salem (Red Sox)
13. Chase D'Arnaud, ss/2b, Lynchburg (Pirates)
14. Jordan Danks, cf, Winston-Salem (White Sox)
15. Zach Britton, lhp, Frederick (Orioles)
16. David Lough, of, Wilmington (Royals)
17. Luis Exposito, c, Salem (Red Sox)
18. Che-Hsuan Lin, of, Salem (Red Sox)
19. Jeff Bianchi, ss, Wilmington (Royals)
20. Brent Morel, 3b, Winston-Salem (White Sox)
To be eligible for a league's list, a pitcher must have thrown 1/3 inning for each team game or have made 20 appearances (10 in short-season and rookie-level leagues). Hitters need one plate appearance for each team game.

For an eight-team league, the high Class A Carolina League featured more than its share of potential superstar talent and depth this season.

In Myrtle Beach outfielder Jason Heyward and Frederick lefthander Brian Matusz, the league featured arguably the best hitting and pitching prospects who appeared in the minors in 2009. Matusz, who moved so quickly that he finished the year in Baltimore, was the best of a strong CL group of lefthanders that also included Wilmington's Mike Montgomery and Danny Duffy and Frederick teammate Zach Britton.

Several 2008 first-round picks bolstered the CL with strong performances in their first full pro seasons. Third baseman Pedro Alvarez led Lynchburg to the league's best first-half record (45-24) before his promotion to Double-A, and Kinston third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall and Salem righthander Casey Kelly also stood out.

Subscribers can see scouting reports for the entire Carolina League Top 20 Prospects list. Premium