2011 Draft: Baseball America’s Updated Top 60 Prospects


Baseball America posted it’s updated list of the top 60 draft prospects yesterday (subs. req’d), and they’ve still got Rice 3B Anthony Rendon in the top spot. I give them credit for sticking to their guns. UCLA RHP Gerrit Cole ranks second, Virginia LHP Danny Hultzen third, and Cole’s teammate RHP Trevor Bauer fourth. The Yankees’ first pick is 51st overall, and BA’s 51st ranked prospect is Western Kentucky OF Kes Carter. They call him an “impressive athlete with [the] tools to stay in center field” and “some pop from the left side” to go with “hard-nosed play.” Remember it’s not a mock draft, I’m just lining up spots. Personal fave Hudson Boyd ranks 57th.

In some other draft-related news, Jim Callis says that high school right-handers Dylan Bundy and Archie Bradley are telling teams that they want six-year, $30M and five-year, $20M contracts to turn pro, respectively. That’s LOL-worthy, those would easily be the largest contracts in draft history. The first would be double Stephen Strasburg’s record deal. Those kids are good (Bundy ranks fifth, Bradley 13th on BA’s list), but not that good. However, if those two are really floating demands like that, they would probably fall pretty hard since there are so many quality alternatives in the form of college pitching. I doubt either Bundy or Bradley would get to the Yankees at 51, but stranger things have happened.

Categories : Asides, Draft


  1. Archie Bradley: I want 30M to go pro.
    Ted Striker: Surely, you can’t be serious.
    Archie Bradley: I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley.

  2. Mister Delaware says:

    They call him an “impressive athlete with [the] tools to stay in center field” and “some pop from the left side” to go with “hard-nosed play.”

    Big HS arms : Axisa :: Toolsy CFs : Mister D

    I immediately want this kid drafted.

  3. dennis says:

    I doubt these guys get past the Red Sox even if they slide. Also Mock Drafts have Rays taking Purke which i think is just a ploy to keep him away from us, wasting a pick and getting 1 next year. I think we should do what the Braves do draft HS guys only and develop, develop, develop. Now granted they are MUCH better at it then us but odds are some will eventually emerge.

    • CP says:

      Are they really MUCH better? How many young starters have they developed?

      • V says:

        See below – I’m having commenting issues:

        Hanson, Jurrjens (acquired from Tigers for Renteria), Beachy, Minor (in AAA), Wainwright (traded for JD Drew) that I can think of off the top of my head.

        (Wow, just looked into the Wainwright trade; the Braves were willing to deal Wainwright for Drew, but Horacio Ramirez was off-limits. Heh).

        • CP says:

          Hanson and Beachy count, but I’m not sure that I’d count someone in AAA (not matter how good they may be). And Jurrjens only made a couple of rehab appearances in the minors for Atlanta, so I’m not sure whether that counts as ‘developing’ a pitcher. It’s important to be able to spot talent and acquire it (through trades, FA signings, etc), but that’s a different skill than developing pitchers.

          And Wainwright was only in Atlanta through AA. Do the Yankees get credit for Arodys Vicaino, then?

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Hanson was from CC and Beachy went to Indiana Wesleyan. Jurrjens was an IFA.

            The original commenters point was that the Braves “draft HS guys only and develop, develop, develop.” That is just not true.

            • CP says:

              I was responding to this part:

              Now granted they are MUCH better at it then us but odds are some will eventually emerge.

              I don’t really care how they got them, I’m curious if they’re actually good at developing pitchers.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                I wasn’t disagreeing with you. I was commenting on the discussion in general.

                “I don’t really care how they got them, I’m curious if they’re actually good at developing pitchers.”

                Clearly this is not true. You do care that they acquired Jurrjens via trade when he was MLB ready, and have said as much.

                Evaluating “development” is almost impossible for an average fan. The line between scouting, acquiring, and developing amateur talent is almost impossible to see. Clearly the Braves do something right with regard to pitching, but which of those three different skills they stand out in to what extent? Really hard to say.

                The original point was that they stand out in drafting HS talent and developing it. Heyward and Freeman being the recent examples. Again, though, did they take an amazing talent in Heyward? Take a good talent and “develop” him into an amazing talent? Both?

                The fact that most of their guys are not actually from HS largely invalidates dennis’ point that Yankees should following their lead of “only” drafting HS players. That’s not what Atlanta does, so doing that would not be following them at all.

                • CP says:

                  Clearly this is not true. You do care that they acquired Jurrjens via trade when he was MLB ready, and have said as much.

                  I care about it because he was never a minor leaguer for the Braves. Someone like Wainwright there is a question as to who should get credit for developing him, but not with guys like Jurrjens or IPK.

          • Also, FWIW, Mike Minor was the 7th overall pick in the draft. Yes, the Braves should get credit for developing him into a legit big league pitcher, but it’s (generally speaking) a little easier to develop a top-10 pick into a big leaguer than a pick in the 30s/40s/50s where the Yankees usually pick. A guy that slides down to that range usually has some holes or red flags. A guy taken #7 is taken there because he has tons of potential and very few potential flaws to stand in his way.

            I’m not saying the Yankees track record with developing pitchers is spotless (far from it), but remember that our degree of difficulty is a little bit higher. (In many respects, including the ability to patiently let those pitchers mature on the big league level and absorb their natural struggles when we have an organizational mandate to compete for the title every single year; that’s a HUGE obstacle as well.)

            • JobaWockeeZ says:

              The Yankees have more difficulty in acquiring top tiered arms but as said that’s far from an excuse. Hughes and Joba were on multiple top 10 lists during their prospect peak. Heck Joba and Hughes during draft time were considered as top arms.

              Minor too is at the point of being a top 5 pitching prospect. We’ll see how it ends up but the Braves probably have a better shot of developing Minor.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                There is a large degree of responsibility that lies with the player himself, and a ton of luck involved.

                re: luck… If Joba never falls in Texas, maybe he is a top-of-the-rotation starter right now. If Hughes doesn’t have the shoulder issue this season, maybe he’s right now establishing himself as a legit #2 starter. Maybe neither of those would have happened. I don’t think the Braves could have done much to train Joba to duck-and-roll better, and the Hughes shoulder thing may or may not be attributable to the Yankees “development” of him.

                Minor was BA’s #37 prospect entering this season. He was the #61 prospect according to Law. Who had him in the top 5? Teheran people might have had in their top 5, but I haven’t seen Minor there.

                And do the Yankees get no credit for taking kids #23 and #41 in the draft and having them turn into top 5 prospects? Certainly they did something right in scouting, acquiring, and/or developing them to have guys drafted in those spots recognized as such.

                • JobaWockeeZ says:

                  Minor is a top 5 pitching prospect according to BA. Not overall.

                  And there’s a funny story about Hughes dropping that year. I don’t recall but it had something to with Boras I believe and it caused Hughes to fall a lot.

                  Joba yes they deserve some credit but he’s been regarded as a top arm in tat draft its just that he had an injury concern or whatnot. But his stuff during the draft was still nasty.

                  • Ted Nelson says:

                    BA ranks 20 pitchers above Minor in their 2011 rankings. How is he in their top 5?

                    My point with Hughes and Joba is just that the Yankees did something right to get 2 arms that became top 5 overall prospects and have become successful MLB pitchers. People’s standards are too high.

            • Ted Nelson says:

              The natural struggles problem isn’t unique to the Yankees. The Braves have given both Minor and Teheran spot starts this season, only to see them get pretty well rocked. If that continues (they’re both killing AAA, so a good chance it doesn’t continue in a larger sample), especially with Minor, I wouldn’t really be surprised to see them move the guy to the pen or another org. Similar to how they moved Marquis to the pen in 2003 and then to the Cards in 2004.

              There just aren’t any perfect organizations out there that never make mistakes. People tend to hold the Yankees (or whoever they root for I’m sure) to an impossibly high standard.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                I mean the same people who bash the Yankees pitcher development often cite the Braves (Marquis) or Rangers (Feliz) as model organizations. And they cite the inability to turn the Big 3 into stud front-end starters by 25 as proof the Yankees can’t develop pitching talent. Of course, these other organizations have similar episodes to Joba or Hughes or IPK in their recent pasts too.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      The Braves don’t only draft HS players… Last year’s draft 1 of their top 8 picks was from HS. 2009 none of their top 8 picks were from HS.

      Their top pick in 2008 has an ERA of almost 5 in the Sally league… all of their top pitching prospects are IFAs not draft picks.

      Let’s stick to reality.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        “Now granted they are MUCH better at it then us but odds are some will eventually emerge.”

        Some have emerged for the Yankees, you are also way off there. Gardner, Hughes, Joba, Robertson, IPK, AJax, Nova, Coke, Dunn, Melancon… these are all guys who emerged just in the past few years.

        • JobaWockeeZ says:

          You’re comapring hem to the likes of Chipper Jones, Jason Heyward, Martin Prado, Jason Heyward and Tommy Hanson to the group above?

          That’s funny.

          • Chipper Jones was A.) drafted 21 years ago, B.) the first OVERALL pick in the draft, and C.) acquired and developed by an entirely different set of general managers, managers, scouts, and organizational members than what the Braves employ now.

            He’s so irrelevant to the conversation at hand, mentioning him only serves to red-herring the discussion.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Chipper Jones, are you fucking serious? I quote: “these are all guys who emerged just in the past few years.” PAST FEW YEARS. Chipper was drafted (#1 overall I might add) around the same time that Jason Heyward and Jesus Montero were born.
            Should I add Mickey Mantle on the Yankees side of the ledger? Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada, Bernie Williams… those are Chipper’s contemporaries.
            You want to talk about funny? That’s hilarious.

            Heyward, like Minor, was picked in a spot above where the Yankees have drafted since they took Matt Drews in 1993: #14. You’re comparing apples and oranges. Would I compare Robinson Cano to Heyward, though? Jesus Montero maybe? Sure I would.

            Would I compare Brett Gardner to Martin Prado? Why not? Prado’s career wOBA is .351, Gardner’s is .338. That’s pretty comparable.

            The Yankees haven’t produced a Tommy Hanson, but they have produced good pitching depth.

  4. CP says:

    Where are Bundy and Bradley committed?

  5. V says:

    Hanson, Jurrjens (acquired from Tigers for Renteria), Beachy, Minor (in AAA), Wainwright (traded for JD Drew) that I can think of off the top of my head.

  6. Gonzo says:

    Remember when Boras was saying that Strasburg should get $50mm? Then afterwards he said that he wasn’t “asking” for $50mm. He was just comparing him to Dice-K.

    Same thing for these guys. They just want teams to know they mean business.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      Yeah, but that could still scare some teams away.

      The Yankees can only draft 1 guy at #51, so all it takes is one guy they love being available. Maybe that’s a signability or injury guy who is highly ranked and falls, or maybe it’s another Cito Culver type they like better than the consensus. I mean one of those guys could be the Castellanos of 2011, and the Yankees didn’t take Castellanos even though he was available when they picked.

      • Gonzo says:

        If either were the clear-cut #1, I don’t think it would matter, but yes it could scare some teams away.

        • Gonzo says:

          I also beleive that neither makes it to #51.

          Other big spenders have emerged in the past few years.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Again… it’s just about 1 guy they like being there at #51. These guys become candidates because of their bonus demands.

            Only a few guys are getting bonuses above $3 mill every season. Teams aren’t running around throwing out $3 mill bonuses. Lee and Castellanos were both gone before #51 last season, but perhaps in this deep draft someone will fall a little further. These guys certainly are candidates to fall for signability reasons. It just takes one guy falling to #51, though. Doesn’t necessarily have to be Bundy or Bradley or Purke or whoever. Just any 1 of them. And, again, the Yankees might not take the most hyped guy on the board anyway.

            • Gonzo says:

              No arguments here. All of that could happen. I just think Bundy and Bradley don’t make it to #51. Could they? Sure. Do I think they will? No.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          They’re not clear cut #1 overall picks, though. And Bradley is also a top football recruit.

          • Gonzo says:

            That’s why I said if either were a clear-cut #1…

            • Ted Nelson says:

              Yeah, but if I were a bird I could fly. I don’t see why it’s relevant to bring up what would happen in an alternate reality.

              Zach Lee got $5 mill at #28 last season. Certainly possible that these guys get paid and go well before #51. Just more possible that they’re there at #51 than if they said: “I want to sign for $1 mill and get right into pro ball.” If they said that and nothing monumental happened to them before the draft, there’s a 0% chance they’re there at #51. Now there is a non-zero chance they could fall to the Yankees.

  7. awy says:

    pay bundy 40m

  8. pat says:

    Seeing as though this is likely the last year without a hard slotting system, they might actually get a pretty big payout. Not 20 million, but they could eclipse 5 or 6.

    • Mister Delaware says:

      Wouldn’t the opposite logic follow? They can either accept more than slot this year or go back and take slot in the future.

      • pat says:

        I would think a team like the Yankees would pony up as it’s not likely they will get a chance to select those guys going forward.

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