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November 4, 2010

Future Shock Blog

Top 11 Prospects Begin Monday!

by Kevin Goldstein

I'm happy to tell all of you that one of your favorite off-season features at Baseball Prospectus is coming soon, as my Top 11 Prospects for all 30 organizations begins on Monday. After listening to reader feedback, there have been a few minor changes to how they'll be done this year. First off, I'm expanding the extra list from four players to nine, so while you will still get in-depth reports on 11 prospects, you'll get quick comments on the players I've rated from 11-20, and as always, one sleeper. As for the write-ups themselves, they will now feature a quick note on the best and worst tools for each prospect, a specific year given as a major league ETA, as well as a quick line about potential fantasy impact. Finally, the order has changed significantly. No longer alphabetical by league, which was always unfair to Washington Nationals fans, I will now go by 2011 draft order, which is as follows.

  1. Pirates
  2. Mariners
  3. Diamondbacks
  4. Orioles
  5. Royals
  6. Nationals
  7. Indians
  8. Cubs
  9. Astros
  10. Brewers
  11. Mets
  12. Marlins
  13. Dodgers
  14. Angels
  15. Athletics
  16. Tigers
  17. Rockies
  18. Blue Jays
  19. Cardinals
  20. White Sox
  21. Red Sox
  22. Padres
  23. Rangers
  24. Reds
  25. Braves
  26. Giants
  27. Twins
  28. Yankees
  29. Rays
  30. Phillies

So on Monday we'll start with the Pirates and go from there, with an anticipated pace that is faster than last year's as well. As always, each subscriber-only Top 11 turns into it's own system-specific chat thanks to our comment system (also available only to subscribers), and I look forward to being busy in the comments and trying to answer all your questions. Hope you are looking forward to these as much as I am in putting them out there.

Kevin Goldstein is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Kevin's other articles. You can contact Kevin by clicking here

36 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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Nov 04, 2010 21:01 PM
rating: 13

Somebody has a busy offseason planned.

Nov 04, 2010 21:40 PM
rating: 1

The added info sounds great. Can't wait.

Nov 04, 2010 21:52 PM
rating: 0

Way better than Christmas.

Nov 04, 2010 22:21 PM
rating: 5

Funny, I was actually just wondering what the draft order was, but had forgotten to look it up. Now I know the draft order AND the Top 11 order. Convenient!

Nov 04, 2010 23:01 PM
rating: 3

Except the Diamondbacks, Padres and Brewers have extra picks in the first round and there will be some more changes when Type A free agents are signed.

Nov 05, 2010 13:10 PM
rating: 0

Crap, good call. Thank you.

Nov 05, 2010 13:54 PM
rating: 0

So if the Jays get a wad of extra comp picks and one (or more) had belonged to a team in the latter stages of the 1st round, can we get a Jays' top-40 instead? ;>)

Nov 05, 2010 06:15 AM
rating: 1
Benjamin Harris

Wow, it's Friday, and I can't wait for Monday. Never said that before.

Nov 05, 2010 06:18 AM
rating: 4

Awesome Awesome Awesome Awesome Awesome

Nov 05, 2010 07:05 AM
rating: 3

While the old system was unfair to the Nationals, the new system puts too much emphasis on the Royals and Pirates.

Can't wait!

Nov 05, 2010 07:10 AM
rating: 0

One suggestion is to have, and I don't remember if it was in previous years, but a Major League comparable for each player. Someone that scouts project a particular player's skill level projects him to be.

For example, Lars Anderson of the Red Sox projects to be a John Olerud type player, or a Richie Sexson type hitter, rather than just saying he projects to be a middle of the lineup hitter with moderate power and good on-base skills.

Nov 05, 2010 07:23 AM
rating: 1
John Carter

Hooray! I appreciate the earlier Top 11s, thank you.

Nov 05, 2010 07:59 AM
rating: 0
Jay Taylor

How many Top 11's are you going to do a week?

I can't wait for these articles. They are always a highlight of my subscription.

Nov 05, 2010 08:49 AM
rating: 0

I'm assuming you simply forgot to mention this along with the other changes, but 5-star status will be more difficult to attain this time around, yes? Talent will dictate a player's star rating, not simply the fact that he falls in the top 40-50? I think everyone is excited about this change.

Nov 05, 2010 09:10 AM
rating: 0
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff

I don't know if it's more difficult, but the bell curve is certainly removed.

Nov 05, 2010 09:34 AM

Kevin, you've said the bell curve is being eliminated before, but the new proposal actually reflects a bell curve.

Prospects are on the far side of the bell curve, so you *should* have fewer five-star than four-star, more three-star than four-star, more two-star than three-star, and more one-star than two-star players (though at the end they'll be off the list.)

Sickels' lists have had this pattern for years, I think - zillions of C or C+ prospects per A prospect. This is right.

Like everyone else, I'm looking forward to the Top 11's. You've done a sterling job this year; the daily updates are great (reminding me of when Jay-Del Mah did those sorts of updates, without the scouting.)


Nov 05, 2010 15:39 PM
rating: -1

EXCELLENT Kevin, can't wait!

Nov 05, 2010 09:32 AM
rating: 0
Al Skorupa

Sounds like your tripling the amount of work you have to do and giving yourself half the time. Impressive.

If PECOTA is what I think it will be then BP is really leading the way again. Love the new additions like Mike Fast, too.

Nov 05, 2010 09:56 AM
rating: 1

I like using the draft order to decide when teams get posted. And I'm sure Billy Beane will be watching closely to make sure you cover the A's before he goes off and swings a huge 4-team trade that completely re-vamps all those prospect sheets you had just finished!

Nov 05, 2010 10:17 AM
rating: 1
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff

One of my finest moments was catching up to Beane in the hotel lobby during the winter meetings and giving him crap for doing that to me every year.

Nov 05, 2010 11:00 AM

Improved top 11 and a podcast to boot?

Kevin Golstein, you are something awesome.

Nov 05, 2010 10:41 AM
rating: 1

*Goldstein, so awesome I forgot how to spell.

Nov 05, 2010 10:42 AM
rating: 1
Lloyd Cole

Thanks! This is one of the highlights of my baseball year, too. Kevin, you do an AMAZING job.

Nov 05, 2010 13:32 PM
rating: 1

Should I be embarrassed to admit that I've been impatiently waiting for the World Series to end, so the Top 11s would be begin?

Nov 05, 2010 16:56 PM
rating: 8
Brian Hays

I second that thought.

Nov 05, 2010 19:08 PM
rating: 0
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff


Nov 05, 2010 19:33 PM
Brian Hays

Is this similar to me saying "I can't wait to get through Saturday and Sunday so I can get to work on Monday"?????

I wish I had job like that....


Nov 05, 2010 22:32 PM
rating: 0

No. No, you should not be embarrassed at all.

Nov 05, 2010 21:02 PM
rating: 0

My favorite time of year....

Nov 06, 2010 10:25 AM
rating: 1
Michael Dennis

Can't wait, one of the main reasons I'm a subscriber.

Nov 06, 2010 11:19 AM
rating: 0

Going by draft order is a good idea because it allows the fans who have suffered the most the advantage of getting their list out faster. Although I still wish we were 30 and not 2. But this and Gerrit Cole/Anthony Rendon will lessen the sting somewhat.

Nov 06, 2010 11:49 AM
rating: 1

The baseball season is over. Long live the baseball season!! Thanks, Kevin, I can't wait.

Nov 06, 2010 15:33 PM
rating: 0

Stellar as always. This type on information is about the only thing I can look forward to this offseason with the talk that the Mariners may be going after the likes of Nick Punto in free agency. Nothing against Punto, he seems to be nice enough guy, but I am much more interested in potential ceilings of Michael Pineda and Dustin Ackley.

Thanks again and can't wait to read them!

Nov 06, 2010 19:47 PM
rating: 0

maybe better than actual baseball.

Nov 06, 2010 23:17 PM
rating: 0

Would these be an appropriate time and place to examine what the team should be looking for in the upcoming draft? Chance to somewhat highlight/discuss the area of need the team has for it's farm system.

Nov 07, 2010 09:00 AM
rating: 0
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