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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Prospects Newsbeat

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Dodgers Call Up Julio Urias for Friday Start

The Los Angeles Dodgers are expected to usher in the big-league career of their top prospect Friday when left-hander Julio Urias makes his major-league debut in New York against the Mets.

The club is expected to purchase the contract of the 19-year-old Urias, adding him to both the 40-man and the 25-man active roster. Friday’s expected starter, Alex Wood, will miss his outing with triceps soreness, but the Dodgers are expecting him to return to action Monday at Chicago against the Cubs.

Here’s hoping he fares better than Berrios.

Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: May 26, 2016 at 01:04 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, prospects

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Breaking down the Top 30 International Prospects list

Kevin Maitan did not just suddenly appear on the radar for international scouts. He’s been on it for three years—and he only turned 16 in February.

So it’s really no surprise that the superlatives fly in when Maitan’s name is mentioned in international scouting circles. Scouts and front-office executives describe him as athletic, big, strong and talented. They compare him to a young Miguel Cabrera and Chipper Jones, and other established Major League stars.

The switch-hitting teenage shortstop from Venezuela has long been considered the top prospect for the international class of 2016, but now it’s official. Maitan is ranked No. 1 on’s list of Top 30 International Prospects for 2016.

This year’s Top 30 International Prospects list includes 14 players from the Dominican Republic, 10 from Venezuela, five from Cuba and one from Mexico. The positions break down like this: eight outfielders, 17 infielders, three pitchers and two catchers.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 05, 2016 at 11:44 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: international free agents, prospects

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Dominic Smith turns on power for B-Mets in rout

After batting just .174 through his first 11 games, Smith has been on a tear, hitting.349 over his last 11. During that streak,’s No. 47 overall prospect has driven in 14 runs and homered twice, raising his season average to .275.

“It wasn’t too frustrating,” Smith said of his slow start. “I know there’s a lot of things you have to adjust to. This level is the toughest level before the big leagues. There’s a lot of top prospects you have to face day in and day out. There’s a lot of different variables you have to account for when you come to Double-A.

“Last year in the Florida State League, I started off way worse than that. Probably hit .140 in the first month and a half. I feel like I started better than I did last year. I know it’s a long season and I always believe in myself. When I’m struggling and going bad, I know it can’t go much worse than that. I believe in my abilities and that it will eventually turn around.”

Smith, who turns 21 in June, is hitting .275/.320/.451 in AA.

Dilson Herrera hit a couple of homers in last night’s game for Vegas. Along with Wuilmer Becerra (part of the Syndergaard trade who is hitting .400/.440/.471 in AA) and Rosario, I think those guys that are most worth following.

Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: May 04, 2016 at 08:38 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, minor leaguers, prospects

Friday, April 29, 2016

Pipeline Inbox: 2016 MLB Draft questions |

The Draft is just six weeks away and we’re kicking up’s coverage a few notches today by updating and expanding our Top Prospects list to 100. I also wrote an overview of the top talent available, and Jonathan Mayo will break down options for the Phillies with the No. 1 overall pick Friday. On Monday, we’ll both speculate as to how the first 10 choices could unfold. Then on Tuesday, I’ll detail the prospects whose stock has risen and fallen the most since the start of the year.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 29, 2016 at 01:48 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: draft, prospects

Minor League Baseball Toolshed: Big week for pitching prospect promotions |

Some good guys on the way. After seeing him pitch a couple of times, I’m very high on Cody Reed.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 29, 2016 at 11:30 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Monday, April 25, 2016

Yankees prospect Acevedo dies in car wreck

Yankees Minor Leaguer Sandy Acevedo was killed in a car accident in his native Dominican Republic on Saturday night, the team said. Acevedo was 18 years old.

Prior to their Sunday game against the Rays, the Yankees held a moment of silence in memory of the third baseman. Acevedo had not appeared in any Minor League games since signing with New York as an international free agent last July 6, his 18th birthday.’s David Adler cited a 2015 interview in which Donny Rowland, New York’s director of international scouting, said of discovering the infielder, “Acevedo was one of the hitters that we brought in to face [pitching prospect Yoan Lopez, now the D-backs’ No. 8 prospect], and he absolutely owned him in three out of four at-bats and crushed stuff.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 25, 2016 at 02:34 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, obituaries, prospects, yankees

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The List: Most Aggressive Opening Day Assignments -

Every week during the minor league season, we’ll pick out some aspect of the game to rank. This week, we’re looking at the 10 most aggressive Opening Day assignments of the 2016 season.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 12, 2016 at 02:30 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Where Braves top 30 prospects start the season |

MLB Pipeline is publishing a series of articles on where each team’s Top 30 Prospects are projected to start the season.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 06, 2016 at 12:17 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, prospects

Monday, April 04, 2016

Evaluating the 2016 Prospects: Tampa Bay Rays | FanGraphs Baseball

Here’s Fangraph’s Tampa Rays scouting reports. After reading and following Kiley McDaniel’s reporting the last couple of years, Fangraph’s stuff has been very disappointing this year, primarily because of the timetable. If you are doing scouting reports for fantasy players, you need your Top 100 lists out in early March at the latest for them to be useful. Hopefully, they will fix this issue next year as their stuff went from being one of the most useful lists to the least useful.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 04, 2016 at 09:03 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, rays

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The Top 175 MLB Prospects for 2016 - Minor League Ball

Edit: The linked spreadsheet should be useful if you have a minor league draft coming up.

John Sickel’s Top 150. It came out a few days after my simulation league’s minor league draft so it didn’t help me this year. If you haven’t had your draft yet check it out. Also, here’s an Excel sheet of most of my prep work. If you haven’t had your draft yet, I’m positive it can help you.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 08:43 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, prospects

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

2016 Baseball Prospect Book PDF released - Minor League Ball

John Sickels recently released the pdf version of his 2016 Baseball Prospect Book. After buying the book for 20 years this is the first year I won’t be purchasing it. Because of health issues the last two years, the release date of the book has gotten later and later. Last year, even though it was released too late to be useful to me, I still purchased it. This year I just can’t justify buying the book just for that reason again.

I wish John well and hope, if he decides to keep publishing, he can get his book released earlier, like similar prospect ratings.

If you still haven’t had your draft and/or would like the book as a reference, click through the link and buy it.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 23, 2016 at 01:56 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: books, prospects

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Dodgers Digest / 2016 Dodgers prospects: Best Tools

Dodgers Digest breaks down the best prospect tools.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 17, 2016 at 06:56 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, prospects

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Spring Training Roundup: Short Story? -

Baseball America updates on some young players in camp.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 16, 2016 at 09:17 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Friday, February 26, 2016

Organization Talent Rankings Prioritize Impact -

John Manuel provides some insight on how Baseball America puts together it’s organizational and prospect rankings.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 26, 2016 at 11:19 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Republic of Baseball

“Baseball is beginning again in America, with players gathering at spring training sites in Florida and Arizona. But in the Dominican Republic, the sport never really stops. It is a year-round religion, a potential ticket out of poverty, and the result is that the country produces more major leaguers than any other nation on Earth, with the obvious exception of the United States.

Baseball is everywhere in the Dominican, and the images it creates are both innocent and jarring…’

NattyBoh Posted: February 18, 2016 at 09:25 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dominican baseball, prospects

The Consequences Of Having No Top 100 Prospects -

The future isn’t bright.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 18, 2016 at 05:44 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, sabermetrics

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Baltimore Orioles: Top 10 prospects - MLB - Keith Law Blog- ESPN

Keith Law released his team top ten lists. Baltimore is free but you’ll need an Insider account to read the rest. (The cheapest way to get an Insider account it to buy a discount subscription to ESPN the Mag, which you can get for about $13.)

Jim Furtado Posted: February 16, 2016 at 11:23 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Ben Badler Talks Farm System Rankings On MLB Network -

Jim Furtado Posted: February 16, 2016 at 09:09 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

KATOH’s Farm System Rankings | FanGraphs Baseball

Some brief remarks on the top-five organizations:

#1 – Brewers

It’s almost as if the Brewers topped this list on purpose. Seven of their top eight prospects joined the organization in the past seven months, with Orlando Arcia representing the only holdover. Recently acquired KATOH darlings Ramon Flores, Josh Hader, Isan Diaz, Zachary Davies and Javier Betancourt are responsible for a lot of those wins. However, consensus top-100 guys Jacob Nottingham, Brett Phillips and Jorge Lopez also project very well.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 16, 2016 at 09:00 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, sabermetrics

Steven Matz, A.J. Reed rank highly in ZiPS’ top 100 prospects list - (INSIDER $)

ZiPS Top 100 Prospects.

1    Corey Seager    SS    Los Angeles Dodgers    1
2    Byron Buxton    CF    Minnesota Twins    2
3    J
.PCrawford    SS    Philadelphia Phillies    4
4    Orlando Arcia    SS    Milwaukee Brewers    10
5    Dansby Swanson    SS    Atlanta Braves    13
6    Manuel Margot    CF    San Diego Padres    25
7    A
.JReed    1B    Houston Astros    44
8    Nomar Mazara    RF    Texas Rangers    9
9    Julio Urias    LHP    Los Angeles Dodgers    5
10    Steven Matz    LHP    
New York Mets    37 
Jim Furtado Posted: February 16, 2016 at 08:58 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, prospects

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Seager, Buxton top potential impact rookies |

Remember when Jon Singleton was dumb for selling himself short?

9. A.J. Reed, Astros 1B
Age: 22 rank: 40th
2015: .340 batting average, 30 doubles, 34 home runs at Class A and Double-A
And now: Jon Singleton will get another crack at the big leagues, so Reed will start the season at Triple-A. He seems ready for the next level, and even in an organization loaded with talented kids, Reed stands out.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 14, 2016 at 08:21 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects, rookies

Ke’Bryan Hayes among prospects who just missed top 100 - MLB (INSIDER)

Some extra top prospects.

Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B
Pittsburgh Pirates
Age: 19 | Top level: Low-A

The Pirates focused on hitters who rarely strike out in the 2015 draft, landing top-100 prospect Kevin Newman with their first pick, and Hayes, son of longtime big leaguer Charlie Hayes, with their second. Hayes is an elite defensive third baseman who hits for average but not much power, although with contact this hard, he should at least become a 30-40 doubles guy in time.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 14, 2016 at 07:06 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Friday, February 12, 2016

Top 100 Prospects -

Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospect List.

Rank, Player, Position, Organization
1. Corey Seager, ss/3b, Dodgers
Hit: 70. Power: 60. Speed: 40. Fielding: 45. Arm: 60. ETA: 2016. Age: 21
2. Byron Buxton, of, Twins
Hit: 70. Power: 60. Speed: 80. Fielding: 70. Arm: 70. ETA: 2016. Age: 22
3. Yoan Moncada, 2b, Red Sox
Hit: 60. Power: 55. Speed: 65. Fielding: 60. Arm: 55. ETA: 2017. Age: 20
4. Julio Urias, lhp, Dodgers
Fastball: 60. Curveball: 60. Changeup: 60. Control: 70. ETA: 2017. Age: 19
5. Lucas Giolito, rhp, Nationals
Fastball: 80. Curveball: 70. Changeup: 55. Control: 60. ETA: 2016. Age: 21
6. J.P. Crawford, ss, Phillies
Hit: 60. Power: 50. Speed: 50. Fielding: 60. Arm: 60. ETA: 2016. Age: 21
7. Alex Reyes, rhp, Cardinals
Fastball: 80. Curveball: 65. Changeup: 50. Control: 45. ETA: 2017. Age: 21
8. Orlando Arcia, ss, Brewers
Hit: 65. Power: 45. Speed: 65. Fielding: 70. Arm: 70. ETA: 2016. Age: 21
9. Trea Turner, ss, Nationals
Hit: 60. Power: 40. Speed: 75. Fielding: 50. Arm: 55. ETA: 2016. Age: 22
10. Joey Gallo, 3b/of, Rangers
Hit: 50. Power: 80. Speed: 40. Fielding: 45. Arm: 70. ETA: 2016. Age: 22

Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2016 at 10:25 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Klawchat 2/11/16.- Top 100 Prospect List

Keith’s stuff just keeps getting better. Some great prospect insights in this chat, including this one.

Ed: Jon Gray (40 IP) meet service time to miss the list or he’s just fallen that far in a year?
Klaw: He’s gone backwards. Someone altered his delivery, so he’s lost a lot of power. His fastball is down, his slider went from a 70 to a 50, and he has zero deception. That’s why he got whacked around in the big leagues – hitters see the straight four-seamer and hit it. Back in college, he finished way more over his front side, got more tilt on the slider, was touching 99, and even had a better changeup. I don’t know what caused the alteration, but I saw it and so did every scout I asked about Gray for these reports.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 12, 2016 at 06:39 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: prospects

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Keith Law: 2016 ranking of all 30 farm systems (INSIDER)

1. Atlanta Braves
2015 rank: 6
Players in top 100 (2016): 7

This system was among the bottom five just two years ago after several bad drafts and questionable player development, but a series of trades—including several fleecings of the Diamondbacks—has stocked the system with pitching depth that is the envy of the industry. They tied for the most players in my top 100 and had a couple of other players who could make cases for inclusion, and their 11th- to 20th-ranked prospects still include a lot of prospective major league value. It has been a remarkable turnaround for general manager John Coppolella and his front office, and the future is even brighter with the team having the third overall pick in June’s draft. The team’s agreement to sign Venezuelan prospect Kevin Maitan on July 2 is the worst-kept secret in the industry….

30. Los Angeles Angels
2015 rank: 27
Players in top 100 (2016): 0

I’ve been doing these rankings for eight years now, and this is by far the worst system I’ve ever seen. They traded their top two prospects in the Andrelton Simmons deal and had no one remotely close to top-100 status. They need a big draft this year to start to restock the system or we’re going to start talking about whether it’s time to trade Mike Trout.

His Top 100 prospect list is here (INSIDER)

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 11, 2016 at 09:55 AM | 55 comment(s)
  Beats: keith law, minor leagues, prospects, rankings

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