Friday, July 26, 2013

Reds land two players in top 20 of revised prospects rankings

 

On Friday, the fine folks at MLB.com decided to publish their midseason update on prospect rankings. The revision was necessary after teams pumped more talent into their farm systems with the addition of new players from the MLB Draft.

The two rankings that MLB.com has promoted the most includes the overall Top 100 Prospects list and the list of Top 20 Prospects for each club. The Reds didn't receive a whole lot of representation in the main rankings. However, the two prospects they did land in the rankings nestled in nicely on the fringe of the top 20.

Speedster Billy Hamilton came in at No. 19 while right-handed pitcher and 2011 first round pick Robert Stephenson came in at No. 20. Naturally, both players comprised the top two spots in the Top 20 Prospects rankings for the club.

Here is a snippet of what was said about the duo:

The Reds have just two players in MLB.com's top 100 prospects, but they both sit in the top 20. Hamilton (No. 19), who became one of the game's most popular Minor Leaguers last season when he stole a professional-record 155 bases, leads the way. He started the season as the 11th-ranked prospect and represented the Reds at the Futures Game during the All-Star break. But he's fallen off a bit as he adjusts to a new position in center field and tougher competition at the Triple-A level.

Immediately behind Hamilton at No. 20 is Stephenson, who has a chance to follow a path similar to that of Cingrani. Stehpenson began the season ranked 51st on the top-100 list, but he made a big jump after going 5-3 with a 2.57 ERA in 14 starts for Class-A Dayton. He earned a nod as a starter for the Midwestern League All-Star Game but couldn't pitch because of a hamstring injury. Recently, the 20-year-old armed with a fastball that can touch triple digits was promoted to Class A Advanced Bakersfield as he quickly climbs the Minor League ladder.

Overall, the experts ranked the Reds farm system 14th out of 30 teams.

The prospect who made the biggest jump in the rankings is outfielder Jesse Winker. Winker moved up to No. 5 after beginning the season at No. 11.

The prospect who fell the most was pitcher Kyle Lotzkar. The Canadian native slid all the way down to No. 12 after beginning the year at No. 6.

Tony Cingrani, who was formerly considered a prospect in the spring, has graduated from the rankings due to his recent stint with the big club.

You can go here to see the fully revision top 20 list for the Reds.

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