2013 Milwaukee Brewers 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. Wily Peralta, rhp
2. Tyler Thornburg, rhp
3. Taylor Jungmann, rhp
4. Hunter Morris, 1b
5. Jimmy Nelson, rhp
6. Johnny Hellweg, rhp
7. Victor Roache, of
8. Scooter Gennett, 2b
9. Clint Coulter, c
10. Mitch Haniger, of
Best Hitter for Average Scooter Gennett
Best Power Hitter Victor Roache
Best Strike Zone Discipline Jason Rogers
Fastest Baserunner Edgardo Rivera
Best Athlete Tyrone Taylor
Best Fastball Johnny Hellweg
Best Curveball Tyler Thornburg
Best Slider Wily Peralta
Best Changeup Hiram Burgos
Best Control Drew Gagnon
Best Defensive Catcher Adam Weisenburger
Best Defensive Infielder Yadiel Rivera
Best Infield Arm Hector Gomez
Best Defensive OF Logan Schafer
Best Outfield Arm Mitch Haniger
Catcher Jonathan Lucroy
First Base Corey Hart
Second Base Scooter Gennett
Third Base Rickie Weeks
Shortstop Jean Segura
Left Field Ryan Braun
Center Field Carlos Gomez
Right Field Norichika Aoka
No. 1 Starter Yovani Gallardo
No. 2 Starter Wily Peralta
No. 3 Starter Marco Estrada
No. 4 Starter Tyler Thornburg
No. 5 Starter Taylor Jungmann
Closer John Axford
Year Player, Pos 2012 Org
2003 Brad Nelson, 1b/of Rangers
2004 Rickie Weeks, 2b Brewers
2005 Rickie Weeks, 2b Brewers
2006 Prince Fielder, 1b Tigers
2007 Yovani Gallardo, rhp Brewers
2008 Matt LaPorta, of Indians
2009 Alcides Escobar, ss Royals
2010 Alcides Escobar, ss Royals
2011 Mark Rogers, rhp Brewers
2012 Wily Peralta, rhp Brewers
Year Player, Pos 2012 Org
2003 Rickie Weeks, 2B Brewers
2004 Mark Rogers, RHP Brewers
2005 Ryan Braun, 3B Brewers
2006 Jeremy Jeffress, RHP Royals
2007 Matt LaPorta, 1B Indians
2008 Brett Lawrie, 3B/C Blue Jays
2009 Eric Arnett, RHP Brewers
2010 *Dylan Covey
U. of San Diego
2011 Taylor Jungmann, RHP Brewers
2012 Clint Coulter, C Brewers
Rickie Weeks, 2003
Taylor Jungmann, 2011
Ben Sheets, 1999
Ryan Braun, 2005
Prince Fielder, 2002
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Milwaukee Brewers

When the Brewers were foundering in late July amid a bullpen crisis, GM Doug Melvin decided it was time to trade Zack Greinke, who had spurned overtures to sign a contract extension.

Melvin figured it best to recoup some young talent after dealing four players—Alcides Escobar, Jake Odorizzi, Lorenzo Cain and Jeremy Jeffress—to acquire Greinke from the Royals in December 2010. The GM sent Greinke to the Angels for shortstop Jean Segura and righthanders Johnny Hellweg and Ariel Pena. Melvin would have traded other veteran pitchers too, but Francisco Rodriguez and Randy Wolf were struggling too badly to attract interest, and Shaun Marcum had an elbow injury.

A funny thing happened after the Brewers waved their white flag. They started winning. Milwaukee won 24 of 30 games to climb back into the National League wild-card race before being eliminated with three games left in the season. While they failed to make the playoffs, they did record consecutive winning seasons for just the second time in the last two decades.

The surge came with young players playing key roles. Mike Fiers had come up from Triple-A Nashville in late May to assume a starting berth, and he was followed by Mark Rogers and Wily Peralta. Those pitchers performed so well that the Brewers began rethinking their plans for 2013, when they'll give all three of them the opportunity to win permanent jobs in the rotation.

Segura made the Brewers feel better about their shortstop situation, which was thrown into turmoil in early May when veteran Alex Gonzalez tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. The 22-year-old Segura came up from Double-A just eight games after the trade and was thrust into a sink-or-swim situation. After taking on water early, he made adjustments and held his own down the stretch, and the Brewers are prepared to go with him at shortstop to open 2013.

Two other rookies made significant contributions to the lineup. After Mat Gamel went down in early May with a torn ACL in his right knee, Corey Hart moved from right field to first base and Japanese import Norichika Aoki took over in right and settled in as the leadoff hitter.

When Jonathan Lucroy broke his hand in late May and missed two months, Martin Maldonado proved he could handle everyday catching duties if necessary. When Lucroy returned, Milwaukee dealt George Kottaras to the Athletics and made Maldonado the backup.

After focusing on pitching in the 2011 draft, the Brewers used extra picks to stock up on hitters in 2012. They selected Washington high school catcher Clint Coulter and Georgia Southern outfielder Victor Roache in the first round, then followed with Cal Poly outfielder Mitch Haniger in the supplemental first. All three rank among Milwaukee's Top 10 Prospects.

The Brewers hope Coulter, Roache and Haniger will have an easier time getting acclimated to pro ball than the pitchers they took at the top of the 2011 draft. Taylor Jungmann, the 12th overall pick, didn't miss many bats when he went straight to high Class A. He had more success than 15th overall choice Jed Bradley, who got progressively worse on the same club before being shut down in early August.

Jorge Lopez, a 2011 second-rounder, battled back problems and took a rare step back from the Rookie-level Arizona League to the Dominican Summer League. The silver lining from the 2011 draft crop of pitchers was that Drew Gagnon (third round) and David Goforth (seventh) helped Wisconsin win the low Class A Midwest League title.

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