Baseball America posted their ranking of the top 20 prospects in the Low-A South Atlantic League today, with southpaw Manny Banuelos coming in at #9. He’s the third lefty pitcher on the list, trailing only Martin Perez of Texas (#1) and Matt Moore of Tampa Bay (#3). “He’s the most impressive pitcher I’ve had at this level since Phil Hughes five years ago,” Charleston manager Torre Tyson said in the subscriber only scouting report. “For me, he’s a front-end starter in the big leagues, and you don’t have too many guys like that come through here.”
Outfielder Melky Mesa also squeezed onto the list at #20, and the report on him is the same as it’s always been: super toolsy, but held back by his overly aggressive approach. Andrew Brackman obviously didn’t make the cut, but in the chat we learned that some scouts had him up to 96 with the fastball. The Yanks could keep him in the bullpen to get him to the bigs faster, but holding him back to work on his command and other stuff would be wiser for his development.
The Florida State League comes out next Wednesday, and I’m pretty sure Jesus Montero got enough at-bats with Tampa to qualify for that sucker.