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Here’s an admission that will be met with raucous agreement by the scads
of Red Sox fans who have bombarded us with questions about the absence
of Jon Lester from our Top 50 Prospects list.

We screwed up.

But not in the way you might think.

The ranking of the top prospects in baseball has become an annual
exercise in collaboration for us. The final rankings this year were
arrived at only after a prolonged, sometimes heated discussion of
every player, in which every writer associated with Baseball
Prospectus
was invited to participate. And like every list that is
meant to capture a dynamic process–the rising and falling fortunes
of young players–at a moment in time, our prospect rankings were
constantly being revised, edited and tweaked right up until the very
moment the final copy is to be shipped off to the printer to be
published.

In that commotion, apparently a brief spasm of
confusion appeared. The final rankings, which were sent
off to the publisher last month and will be found in Baseball
Prospectus 2006
when it begins shipping in a few days, does in fact
have Jon Lester listed as an Honorable Mention. A preliminary list, which had substituted Lester with Anibal Sanchez was
sent to the editorial staff of our Web site, and that list was published here this past Monday.

We did not catch the error at first, even after angry e-mails from Red
Sox Nation started pouring in from the moment the list was published.
I went so far as to defend the omission of Lester in a recent chat
session, but the level of exasperation from several readers was enough
to make me think that maybe Lester deserved a second look. Maybe we
missed something here.

It turns out we did, but not in the way that we thought. So we would
like to issue this correction: The Top 50 Prospects list published on
our Web site should have included Jon Lester, LHP, Boston Red Sox as an
Honorable Mention in the place of Anibal Sanchez, RHP, Florida
Marlins. (The list is otherwise correct. We checked.)

We screwed up. We regret the error and will do
everything we can to ensure it will not happen again.

We’ll now wait to hear from the hordes of Marlins fans who demand to
know why their player got dissed. I hear crickets…

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