A look back and a look ahead to who could the top prosects in the senior circuit next year.
One of the most frequent questions I get, be it via e-mail, chats, or the comment sections in the articles, is which player on (insert team here) has the best shot at moving into the Top 101. That's a much different question from who is the best prospect not in the Top 101, as the focus need to move solely to growth potential. Building on last year's "Future Top Dogs" series, let's keep that category in this year's version, while also taking an honest look at last year's prognostications.
The Cubs' pitching prospect discusses teammates, the mentality and mechanics of pitching, and more.
Be it as a starter or out of the bullpen, Andrew Cashner looms as a big part of the Cubs' future. A 6-foot-6 right-hander who was taken in the first round of the 2008 draft from Texas Christian, the 23-year-old Cashner has gone from college closer to professional starter, albeit with a strict pitch count. In 24 games split evenly between High-A Daytona and Double-A Tennessee last year, Cashner posted a 2.60 ERA while allowing 76 hits in 100 1/3IP. Notably, only one of them left the yard. Cashner talked about his power game, and his future, at the conclusion of the Arizona Fall League season.
The senior circuit's collection of talent on the rise, and the chances of each prospect to become his organization's best.
Prospecting is all about the future, so let's look deep into the coming year and try to figure out who might be topping next year's prospect lists in their respective organizations, as well as who could be moving up, down, or even out, beginning today with the National League. The American League version is here.
Looking into the crystal ball to see who drops where.
With 24 hours to go before the selections begin, the draft remains a muddled mess, making the process of doing a mock a series of hedged wagers. "This is easily one of the most unpredictable first rounds I've ever seen," said one team official. Basically, the draft pool has two clumps of players, one made up of the top ten, followed by a larger group of up to 40 players. With even the first overall pick still up in the air, any one last-minute flip could change the board dramatically.
A slew of lefties in the Pepperdine/San Diego series this weekend could mean trouble for a top player, and a few teams look to prove themselves before the regionals.
You can bet the Pepperdine/San Diego series was bookmarked by scouts a long time ago, as it could be the opportunity to see Brian Matusz go up against Brett Hunter just one month before the draft. Matchups like that can happen in February, where non-conference games can pit a few of the best in the nation against each other, but in May, they're few and far between. I know I was looking forward to it.
Double-checking TCU, and a player who's raised his stock after a resurgence in the Northwoods League.
For a while now, the Mountain West Conference has been a one-team show. Jim Schlossnagle and TCU began their reign seamlessly when San Diego State began a program-wide decline about five years ago. TCU has been dominant in the conference until this season, as Tony Gwynn has finally brought the Aztecs back. With the two teams battling for conference supremacy in San Diego this weekend, I'm still having trouble deciding who the better story is.