2012 Texas Rangers Top 10 Prospects

Baseball America's Top 10 Prospects lists are based on projections of a player's long-term worth after discussions with scouting and player-development personnel. All players who haven't exceeded the major league rookie standards of 130 at-bats or 50 innings pitched (without regard to service time) are eligible. Ages are as of April 1, 2011.

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1. Yu Darvish, rhp
2. Jurickson Profar, ss
3. Martin Perez, lhp
4. Mike Olt, 3b
5. Leonys Martin, of
6. Neil Ramirez, rhp
7. Cody Buckel, rhp
8. Jorge Alfaro, c
9. Christian Villanueva, 3b
10. Rougned Odor, 2b
Best Hitter for Average Jurickson Profar
Best Power Hitter Mike Olt
Best Strike Zone Discipline Jurickson Profar
Fastest Baserunner Leury Garcia
Best Athlete Jordan Akins
Best Fastball Yu Darvish
Best Curveball Martin Perez
Best Slider Yu Darvish
Best Changeup Miguel De Los Santos
Best Control Cody Buckel
Best Defensive Catcher Kellin Deglan
Best Defensive Infielder Jurickson Profar
Best Infield Arm Leury Garcia
Best Defensive OF Engel Beltre
Best Outfield Arm Jordan Akins
Catcher Jorge Alfaro
First Base Mike Napoli
Second Base Jurickson Profar
Third Base Adrian Beltre
Shortstop Elvis Andrus
Left Field Josh Hamilton
Center Field Leonys Martin
Right Field Nelson Cruz
Designated Hitter Ian Kinsler
No. 1 Starter Yu Darvish
No. 2 Starter Neftali Feliz
No. 3 Starter Alexi Ogando
No. 4 Starter Martin Perez
No. 5 Starter Derek Holland
Closer Matt West
Year Player, Pos 2011 Org
2002 Hank Blalock, 3b Rays
2003 Mark Teixeira, 3b Yankees
2004 Adrian Gonzalez, 1b Red Sox
2005 Thomas Diamond, rhp Twins
2006 Edinson Volquez, rhp Padres
2007 John Danks, lhp White Sox
2008 Elvis Andrus, ss Rangers
2009 Neftali Feliz, rhp Rangers
2010 Neftali Feliz, rhp Rangers
2011 Martin Perez, lhp Rangers
Year Player, Pos 2011 Org
2002 Drew Meyer, SS Angels
2003 John Danks, LHP White Sox
2004 Thomas Diamond, RHP Twins
2005 John Mayberry, OF Phillies
2006 Kasey Kiker, LHP Rangers
2007 Blake Beavan, RHP Mariners
2008 Justin Smoak, 1B Mariners
2009 Matt Purke, LHP Nationals
2010 Jake Skole, OF Rangers
2011 Kevin Matthews, LHP Rangers
Leonys Martin, 2011
Nomar Mazara, 2011
Mark Teixeira, 2001
Justin Smoak, 2008 $3,500,000
Ronald Guzman, 2011
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Texas Rangers

One game, one strike, is all that separated the Rangers from winning their first World Series and completing the organization's transformation.

Texas twice squandered a two-run lead to the Cardinals in Game Six of the World Series, then couldn't rebound in Game Seven, capping off an epic postseason. The Rangers hadn't lost consecutive games in 47 trips to the ballpark, but they couldn't overcome the St. Louis buzzsaw and became the first team since the 1991-92 Braves to drop back-to-back World Series.

Despite the disappointment at the end of October, there's no doom and gloom in Arlington. The Rangers remain positioned to extend their run of playoff appearances, thanks to a young core and one of the game's deepest farm systems. Texas affiliates posted the highest combined winning percentage (.564) of all organization in 2011, and all of the full-season clubs qualified for the playoffs.

Since Jon Daniels took over as GM following the 2005 season, the Rangers have become a model organization for scouting and player development. Interestingly, Texas still hasn't had many homegrown talents contribute at the big league level, as the bulk of the club's nucleus—Elvis Andrus, Adrian Beltre, Nelson Cruz, Josh Hamilton, Neftali Feliz, Matt Harrison, Colby Lewis, Mike Napoli, Alexi Ogando—was plucked from other teams. Ian Kinsler and C.J. Wilson were drafted by the Rangers before the Daniels administration, which did sign Derek Holland and Mitch Moreland

The farm system provided the talent to upgrade the bullpen with midseason trades for Mike Adams and Koji Uehara. It should continue to be productive, with lefthander Martin Perez, outfielder Leonys Martin and righthanders Neil Ramirez and Tanner Scheppers on the verge of landing big league roles.

To keep the talent flowing, the Rangers have poured resources into Latin America. They have become one of the most aggressive franchises in that arena and spent nearly $20 million in bonuses for international players in 2011. That total included $5 million for Martin (part of a $15.6 million big league contract), $4.95 million for Dominican outfielder Nomar Mazara, $3.45 million for Dominican first baseman/outfielder Ronald Guzman and $1.5 million for Venezuelan lefthander Yohander Mendez.

The Rangers made an even bigger splash in the offseason. They posted $51.7 million for the negotiating rights to Nippon-Ham Fighters righthander Yu Darvish, widely considered the best pitcher in the world not under contract to an MLB club. They signed him in January to a six-year contract worth $56 million.

Texas already had a strong international presence in their system. Its top prospects are shortstop Jurickson Profar (Curacao) and Perez (Venezuela), with Martin (Cuba), second baseman Rougned Odor (Venezuela), catcher Jorge Alfaro (Colombia) and third baseman Christian Villanueva (Mexico) not far behind.

After the season, farm director Scott Servais left to become the Angels' assistant GM and join former teammate Jerry Dipoto's new regime. To replace Servais, Texas hired former Astros GM and farm director Tim Purpura. More departures may be inevitable, as Rangers assistant GM Thad Levine and senior director of player personnel A.J. Preller are considered future GM candidates.

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