Sunday, December 16, 2012

DBS Top 30 Prospects 2013 -- #15 to #11

We're now moving in to the top half of the Top 30.  Candidates can not exceed the eligibility requirements of 130 at-bats, 50 innings pitched, or 30 relief appearances.  The number in parentheses is the player's age as of July 1, 2013.

#15. Justin Wilson, LHP (25), AAA/MLB -- Wilson has been groomed as a starter ever since his selection as a 5th round pick in 2008.  His control issues have followed him at every stop, with his BB/9 routinely greater than 4.50.  This year, Wilson pitched 135 innings and only allowed 91 hits, complete with 138 K's but also 66 walks (just under 4.50 walks/9 innings).  Wilson made his debut this year as a reliever with the Pirates.  His future is most likely as a power lefty out of the bullpen to highlight his mid-90's fastball and excellent slider.

#14. Jose Osuna, 1B (20), A+ -- While most of the attention was on Alen Hanson and Gregory Polanco this year at West Virginia, Jose Osuna quietly had a nice season for a 19-year old.  His final line was .280/.342/.454 (779 OPS).  His strikeout rate was less than 20% of his at-bats, which is great for a young power hitter that hit 16 home runs.  His defense at first leaves a lot to be desired, so Osuna will have to continue to become a masher.  He'll move up to Bradenton in 2013 along with Polanco and Hanson to form a great core of the lineup.

#13. Dilson Herrera, 2B/SS (19), SS/A -- Herrera has all the earmarks of being the "Alen Hanson of 2013" for the Pirates.  Like Hanson, he's a smallish middle infielder that had a great short-season debut, as Herrera hit .281/.341/.482 (823 OPS) with 7 HR's and 11 SB's.  And like Hanson, Herrera's K rate of 20% is a touch too high for a player of his size and batting profile.  Herrera has excellent arm strength, but he played primarily at 2B due to range concerns.  It seems as if Hanson will make the jump to West Virginia, like Hanson, but there is the possibility that he will go to Jamestown in short-season.  Either way, he's one to watch as a huge breakout candidate in 2013.

#12. Tony Sanchez, C (25), AAA/MLB -- There is no more maligned/star-crossed pick in the Pirates' system than Sanchez.  The player accused of being a signability pick in 2009 started off quite well in his career.  He then broke his jaw twice, once by a pitch and once in a fight, which has in turn coincided with a downturn in his offensive performance.  A player once cited as a potential Yadier Molina is now seen by some as a backup at the Major League level.  The Russell Martin signing may be the strongest indicator of that.  Sanchez hit a combined .251/.338/.401 (739 OPS) between AA/AAA in 2012, with all 8 of his home runs at the AAA level.  His defensive skills are without reproach, as many scouts feel he is defensively ready right now.  2013 is a defining year for Sanchez on many different levels.

#11. Alex Dickerson, 1B (23), AA -- Coming out of college, Dickerson was seen as a bat-first 1B.  However, to this point his bat has not developed as strongly as expected.  His line in 2012 was .295/.353/.451 (804 OPS) at Bradenton with only 13 home runs.  Neither his OPS or home run count is where it needs to be in order for Dickerson to considered a full-time 1B at the Major League level.  Dickerson is here as much on pedigree and the lack of other appropriate options.  Dickerson is a prime candidate to drop far on this list if his offensive profile doesn't pick up in 2013.

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