We’ve made it to the top time, where there are some real talented players. No more wasting time, let’s get to it:
10. Gavin Cecchini, SS – The Mets top pick in last year’s draft had a solid professional debut, being forced to play at Kingsport instead of the GCL and running a line of .246/.311/.330. The numbers don’t mean much right now, and they probably won’t for at least another year or two. What’s important now is that Cecchini has the tools to develop into an average major league shortstop one day, which is something every team has to have. It’d be asking a lot to send a 19-year old to full season ball in Savannah and have him play shortstop in the heat every day, so look for Cechini to headline Brooklyn’s roster this summer.
9. Aderlin Rodriguez, 3B – A lot of people have soured on A-Rod, but I’m still high on him because he has massive amount of power. A-Rod hit 24 homeruns last year between Savannah and St. Lucie, which is something, especially considering the size of Savannah’s ball park and reputation the FSL has for being a pitcher’s league. Power is a rare commodity in baseball, and Rodriguez has plenty of it, which is why he’s a top-10 prospect. The rest of his game isn’t so impressive, but he’s making progress in a lot of areas. If he can prove himself worthy of a mid-season promotion to AA, he’ll be in real good shape.
8. Michael Fulmer, RP – Along with Rafael Montero, Fulmer had one of the most impressive seasons in 2012, rocking a 2.74 ERA as a 19-year old in full season ball, which is almost mind blowing. Fulmer has an overpowering fastball that hits in the mid 90’s on a regular basis and a slider that was looking awfully close to a plus pitch by the end of the season. I have him at 8, which is as low as you’ll find him on anybody’s list, but Fulmer is still far from the big leagues, at his age he won’t be going through more than one level per year, and he still needs to develop a third pitch if he’s going to be a major league starter. That being said, Fulmer has as much promise as almost any pitcher in the organization.
7. Domino Tapia, RP – Tapia and Fulmer could easily flip-flop positions, but I have Tapia higher because he’s a little further along and has a higher floor. Some scouts believe that Tapia’s fastball could make him a contributor in a major league bullpen right now, which means that barring something dramatic and unforeseen he will pitch in the big leagues one day. When Tapia’s fastball is on, it can be nearly impossible to do anything but hit it into the ground for as easy ground out. He also has a change up, which is his best secondary pitch and helps him keep lefties off balance. If Tapia can develop a slider to give him a three-pitch mix, he could become a mid-rotation starter, if not better. If things don’t break that way for him, his fastball is good enough to make him a contributor in a major league bullpen. Of course, that day is a few years away, as the Mets will be content to take their time with Tapia and let him develop.
6. Jeurys Familia, RP – Familia is another guy that I have higher than most, but he’s close to getting to the big leagues for good, possibly straight out of spring training, and with his stuff he could be an impact guy at the back end of the bullpen. The chances that Familia could become a starter in the big leagues remain slim, but his fastball and his slider are both swing and miss pitches, which will work great as a late-inning reliever. His biggest problem is his control, which is a pretty big problem, but if he can avoid hurting himself by walking batters, his stuff will play very well in the majors.