The top 15 organizations of prospectdom, with the reasons why they are where they are, and why they might move down.
1. Oakland Athletics
Last Year's Ranking: 2
Why They Might Be Better Than This: Their Triple-A rotation, led by Trevor Cahill and Brett Anderson, could be better than some big-league rotations; Michael Ynoa is the best Latin American prospect of the decade; 2008 draftees Jemile Weeks and Rashun Dixon bring much-needed tools to an advanced group of hitters.
Why They Might Be Worse: Ynoa has yet to pitch in a pro game; expected to be the fifth starter, lefty Gio Gonzalez might fit better in the bullpen; there is plenty of debate among scouts concerning the ceilings of hitters like Aaron Cunningham and Sean Doolittle.
Outlook For 2010: Could depend as much on how well the big-league team does during the first half of the season as anything else, as the second half is either spent gunning for a post-season spot or the beginning of a rebuilding mode, which could mean that a number of players will lose their prospect status going into 2010.
The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.
Not a subscriber?
Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.
What does the future hold for the eight teams who made it to Omaha last year?
In the three weeks we have left before the college baseball season begins, it's time to turn our attention to the teams most likely to vie for this year's championship. To start that process, let's being with a progress report on the eight teams that were in the hunt for last year's championship at the College World Series. Omaha in 2007 was scene one of the most unlikely combinations of Cinderella stories the CWS has ever seen, so it was only fitting for Oregon State to make the glass slipper fit again in a successful title defense. It's hard to imagine Omaha this year featuring all eight of last year's teams back, because as you will see each team is facing some pretty big hurdles this spring.
Kevin has all the information on the first-rounders who signed, and those who haven't yet.
Sunday's piece on the draft generated a whirlwind of email responses, many of them looking for specific information about a specific pick. Here's a broader look at where the first-round selections are at, both signed and unsigned. Again, as I wrote on Sunday, despite the 13 first-round picks who remain unsigned, and despite the deadline looming at just over a week away, most within the industry feel that all 30 picks will be professionals when we wake up on August 16.
Top college talents try to boost their future draft stock while getting used to woodwork.
There aren't many baseball leagues where a 700 OPS is above-average, and anything much higher guarantees a player major dollars, but you can bet Neifi Perez wants to live there. The Cape Cod League is college baseball's biggest summer stage, but with college hitters becoming re-introduced to wooden bats, the pitchers always end up with better numbers. In the last two summers the average hitter has hit .230/.311/.313, and last summer, just seven hitters had an average above .300. Many hitters from the College World Series, including a couple from the championship Oregon State Beavers, will begin to arrive this week, and thereby give the offensive crop some depth, but the league is already more than two weeks underway. While offense is as scarce as ever, coaches have nevertheless found a new group of players that have impressed them at the plate in the early going.
Kevin gets inside thirty skulls at once, and pegs his top picks for all thirty teams.
1. Tampa Bay Devil Rays
It's the worst-kept secret in the game. David Price came into the season as the top prospect in the draft, and then went out and pitched as well, if not better than expectations. The D-Rays have insisted that Price is just part of a three-player mix that includes California prep third baseman Josh Vitters and Georgia Tech catcher Matt Wieters, but that's just a cover-your-ass move. It's Price, and it has always been Price.