The first 20 Top Prospects have all been highlighted, from Gary Brown all the way down to Andrew Heaney. Now comes the remaining prospects who missed the top 75.
80: Ethan Martin, Pitcher, Philadelphia Phillies
School: Stephens County High School (Toccoa, Georgia)
Draft: First Round, 2008, 15th overall (Los Angeles Dodgers)
2012 Teams: Chattanooga Lookouts (AA Southern League), Reading Phillies (AA Eastern League)
Assets: Fastball, Developing Pitch Array
My Take: Ethan Martin and Aaron Hicks were both first round picks in the 2008 draft, but while Hicks was up and down over the course of his minor league career, Martin has just been plain slooooooooow. While Martin seemed to be primed for the Bust label, especially as he had been moved around a lot in the Dodgers system, fate would have it that he would go to a better place in the Shane Victorino trade. Martin is nothing special though, he does have a 97 MPH fastball, but aside from that, his ancillary pitches are nothing more than experimental tossings. Martin also may have gotten hot in AA Reading, but as he has yet to pitch in AAA, it’s still uncertain if he can contribute at the level he once was. One thing is for certain. If Martin does eventually make it to the majors, he will have the massive undertaking of replacing one of the Phantastic Phour, be it Halladay or Lee, it is unknown.
79: Kolten Wong, Shortstop, St. Louis Cardinals
School: University of Hawai’i
Draft: First Round, 2011, 22nd overall
2012 Teams: Springfield Cardinals (AA Texas League)
Assets: Contact, Fielding
My Take: Back in 2011, when Wong was taken in the draft, the experts gushed that he could be the most majors-ready player in his class. While I am generally leery of the term most majors-ready, in fact, I cringe when a recently drafted player makes the big league team in the same year (read: Ryan Zimmerman, Paco Rodriguez) I have no doubt that Wong will certainly make a strong case to be firmly entrenched in the Cardinals lineup for the future. Wong is best known for being a sabremetrician’s dream, the type of guy who has a high on base percentage, and his arm isn’t too far behind. Wong may be majors ready, and things may be going in his favor right now, especially with Rafael Furcal on the DL, but with Pete Kozma expected to fill in for Furcal, and with Wong seeing his highest competition level at AA, it is increasingly likely that he will be either a September Call-up, or he will make his debut in 2014.
78: Zach Lee, Pitcher, Los Angeles Dodgers
School: McKinney High School (McKinney, Texas)
Draft: First Round, 2009, 28th overall
2012 Teams: Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (A California League), Chattanooga Lookouts (AA Southern League)
Assets: Fastball, Slider, Control, Athleticism
My Take: Zach Lee should be eternally grateful to the Dodgers for getting him away from Louisiana State University, where he would have been their quarterback. Why? Because he would have been the next in a long line of LSU quarterbacks who would have failed in the NFL. Back to baseball. Lee has been a highly regarded pitcher since he was drafted by the Dodgers back in 09. In fact, he was practically untouchable when teams wanted to trade with the Dodgers, except in the R.A Dickey sweepstakes. Lee may not have had the best season statistically last year, but with the Dodgers boasting some of the best arms in baseball for years to come, Lee may be able to develop more, allowing him to become a better starter. He has three well-developing pitches and solid control. not to mention he is a natural athlete. Lee may not be the next Kershaw, but he certainly looks like a future member of the Dodger rotation.
77: Matt Davidson: Third Baseman, Arizona Diamondbacks
School: Yucaipa High School, (Yucaipa, California)
Draft: First Round (comp.), 2009, 35th overall
2012 Teams: Mobile BayBears (AA Southern League)
Assets: Contact, Power,
My Take: Compared to what the Diamondbacks have at third base right now (Martin Prado, Eric Chavez and Eric Hinske), Davidson could find himself making the Major Leagues in 2014, and moving Martin Prado into the outfield. Davidson has the youth and the ability to compensate for the loss of Justin Upton, and with Paul Goldschmidt, could remake the Diamondbacks into a power team like they were back in their heyday.
76: Yasiel Puig, Outfielder, Los Angeles Dodgers
2012 Teams: AZL Dodgers (Rookie Arizona League), Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (A California League)
Assets: Power, Speed, Fielding
My Take: Words cannot describe the spring that Yasiel Puig put together. The latest in the list of high profile Cuban signings, Puig absolutely raked through Arizona League pitching, giving many the impression that he was destined for a Major League roster spot, but the Dodgers felt that he needed more time to develop and wisely sent him down to AA to develop. Puig, being a Cuban signee, is light years ahead of most of his competition, especially since he came from Cuba’s major league. He has the ability to light up the scoreboard with arguably the best power in the top 100, and his speed shows that he could displace Carl Crawford as a leadoff man. Puig is special, and will certainly make his case to be brought up early in 2013.
Stay Tuned for the next five prospects on the list: Tyler Austin, Lucas Giolito, Austin Hedges, Justin Nicolino, and Allen Webster.