Viva El Birdos Top Prospects 2015
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: The Sleepers
For those interested on hearing my awful radio voice, I was on Baseball Essential's Farming the Futures podcast last night talking Cardinals minor league prospects, parsing the differences between Tim Cooney and Marco Gonzales, and discussing Alex Reyes' velocity boost. Give it a listen. on your way home from work this evening.
Previewing Tim Cooney's MLB debut
With Tim Cooney set the make his MLB debut tomorrow, let's take a look at his repertoire and revisit his one-hit shutout against the Iowa Cubs on May 29, 2014.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #1 - Alex Reyes
Reyes has the best stuff I've seen from a 20 year old in the Cardinal minors since Carlos Martinez -- in fact, he might even be more dominant in terms of swing and miss ability. Absolutely dominant for most of his sophomore season in the minors, but will command be his undoing?
F-R Top 25 for 2015: #2 - Stephen Piscotty
There's a lot to like: Great contact rate, above average approach, uses the whole field, plus arm, good athlete...just no power as of yet. The question is whether the latter will be required for the Stanford product to make a big league impression.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #3 - Marco Gonzales
The, uh, rich man's version of #6 prospect Tim Cooney, with similar command, a better breaking ball, and a plus changeup.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #4 - Randal Grichuk
Matheny's "Ferrari" has graduated to the "prospect fatigue" portion of his minor league career. While he's still developing as a player, he's been forced into action based on his tools and potential in each of the last two seasons.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #5 - Rob Kaminsky
The Red Baron's darling of the 2013 draft, Kaminsky acquitted himself well in a full season league at the tender age of 19. Those 100 innings didn't end all the debate regarding his size and unorthodox mechanics, however, so the New Jersey native enters 2015 with just as much to prove.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #6 - Tim Cooney
The former Wake Forest star's command slipped a little in 2014 and some bad luck on the home run front didn't help either. Command, durability, and pitchability are the calling cards here, a profile common among a lot of left handed starters in the high minors.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #7 - Tommy Pham
Finally healthy in 2014 (edit: dammit, we nearly got through the spring too!) Pham demonstrated some of the promise that's kept nearly everyone involved with the Cardinals organization over the last decade excited.
F-R Top 25 Prospect for 2015: #8 - Jack Flaherty
Great name, a bunch of above average stuff that might all be plus at some point, and a good athlete to boot.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #9 - Aledmys Diaz
The Cuban import lost most of his initial professional season to a shoulder injury but he showed enough in his initial run of games in Springfield that he makes it into the top ten.
FR Top 25 for 2015: #10 - Magneuris Sierra
Taking the cautious approach here given the polish and upside ahead of him on the list. Exciting player, for sure, with corollaries to another former Cardinal prospect with similar pedigree.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #11 - Jacob Wilson
There's only a few guys on this list that have the potential to really impact the big league club in 2015, and Jacob Wilson is most certainly one of those guys if he can repeat his stellar 2014 season at the plate.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #12 - Carson Kelly
I've seen Kelly ranked as high as 5th on some lists and as low as 15th on others. Just a year after moving behind the plate I have Kelly right around the same spot in the ranks where he was a year ago. Not because he's regressed or, quite the opposite: There's other players in the system that jumped ahead of him.
F-R Top 25 for 2015: #13 - Sam Tuivailala
Editors Note: If you're a cranky VEB member who enjoys complaining about this list coming out with in-depth player profiles rather than as a list that you can get multiple other places on the web, I've done you the service of linking to the entire list here. Enjoy.
F-R Top 25 for 2015: #14 - Malik Collymore
The Canadian import is built like a brick outhouse but has a lot of skill development to do yet. When everything finally clicks though, he could be a monster middle infield prospect.
F-R Top 25 for 2015: #15 - Charlie Tilson
Probably one of the lowest rankings out there for Tilson heading into 2015, but I don't feel like he's improved much developmentally over the last few years. Basically, he's the same guy the Cardinals drafted out of high school without much added to his game.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #16 - Edmundo Sosa
The Gulf Coast League affiliate was loaded with talent last year. You've heard a lot this winter about Magneuris Sierra, no doubt. Malik Collymore too. I covered Ronnie Williams and Frederis Parra already in this top 25. The guy you probably haven't heard a lot about might also have the highest ceiling of anyone on the GCL Cardinals roster a year ago. That guy? Edmundo Sosa.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #17 - Luke Weaver
A lot of lists have Weaver nearer the top ten than I do. I guess I have more questions about his ability to get professional hitters out or just the overall depth in the current farm system is good enough that a pitcher of this quality ends up down in the mid teens.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #18 - Zach Petrick
After winning the minor league pitcher of the year award in 2013, Petrick struggled upon promotion to AAA, getting hit and hit hard for most of his starts with Memphis.
F-R Top 25 Prospects for 2015: #19 - Rowan Wick
Winner of "Best Baseball Name" for the 2014 Cardinals farm system.
F-R Top 25 for 2015: #20 - Breyvic Valera
Both Joe and I are big fans of Valera but not too many others agree. I think that's a mistake, given his three tools that are average or better and how well he's hit at every level thus far.
F-R Top 25 Prospects 2015: #23 - Ronnie Williams
Just one of the arms in the 2014 "Draft of Pitchers", Williams had a couple of solid but fairly unspectacular months in his introduction to pro ball. There's a lot to like and a awfully high ceiling if things head in the right direction.
F-R Top 25 Prospects: #24 Juan Herrera
Might be the most toolsy SS that the Cardinals have in the entire minor leagues, but there are some questions about his bat that need to be answered at the higher levels of the minors.
F-R Top 25 Prospects: #25 - Ian McKinney
Kicking things off with a pitcher, imagine that.
Top 25 Future Redbirds for 2015: Just missed bats
The Cardinals don't have any start talents among the current position player crop in the minors. Most of the players have flaws that either limit their upside or are high upside players that haven't begun to climb the development curve.
Top 25 Future Redbirds 2015: Juuuust a bit outside
These guys just missed inclusion in the Future Redbirds Top 25 prospects for 2015 for various reasons, but mostly due to organizational depth.