2012 Prospect Rankings Review: National League Outfielders

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 06: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals hits a triple in the first inning against the Chicago Cubs at Nationals Park on September 6, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Over the past week, I have been taking a brief look back at how the top prospects at each position (as ranked during the preseason and again in the midseason) performed this year, and whether they improved or worsened their stock this year. Note that each of these reviews are not new rankings, and will not discuss anyone not on either of those rankings. We have finished up the infield, and will be breaking both the outfield and starting pitcher discussions into separate posts by league.

You can find the previous reviews here: Catcher, First Base, Second Base, Shortstop, Third Base

You can also find our preseason OF rankings here, as well as the midseason OF rankings here. All statistics are courtesy of Baseball Reference, and are through Wednedsay's games.

Bryce Harper (Nationals)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

1

Not Eligible

AAA/MLB

146

558

94

20

54

14

60

123

.259

.327

.446


Analysis: Bryce Harper is very, very good at baseball. And hitting home runs. And throwing out base runners. And we would probably be talking about him even more were it not for some other dude with a fishy name in Anaheim.(Not that we're not already talking about him a lot.)

Brett Jackson (Cubs)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

4

4

AAA/MLB

142

513

78

19

55

27

66

211

.237

.317

.454

Jackson started the season in AAA, and by the time he was promoted to the Majors had already notched 158 strikeouts in just 407 at bats. This is what you are going to get with Jackson - lots of counting numbers, a low batting average, and a ton of strikeouts. It hasn't gotten better in the Majors either - 53 strikeouts in 106 at bats - and yes that does translate to a strikeout rate of 50%.

Adam Eaton (Diamondbacks)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

20

21

AAA/MLB

142

573

140

7

49

46

69

81

.363

.447

.506

Eaton won the PCL Most Valuable Player after hitting .375 with 44 stolen bases and 130 runs scored in 130 games. Not viewed as a top prospect prior to the season, Eaton might be playing his way into a starting job in Arizona next season, and bears watching, as he could be a 5-7 homer, 35+ stolen base outfielder with a good batting average.

Starling Marte (Pirates)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

21

15

AAA/MLB

134

527

77

16

77

28

33

132

.271

.320

.474

Marte was a bit of a surprise call up when it happened, but it didn't really appear that he had a ton left to improve at AAA. He's going to be another type to put up counting numbers, but at some cost in batting average. I could see him settling in around .255-.260 though.

Tim Wheeler (Rockies)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

15

26

AAA

92

379

67

2

37

7

29

69

.303

.357

.412

Wheeler was expected to challenge for a role on the Rockies' major league roster this season, but injuries derailed his season. At this point, he's getting a bit old for the level, and will likely need to make the team in a 4th outfielder role in Colorado.

Oscar Taveras (Cardinals)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

10

2

AA

124

477

83

23

94

10

42

56

.321

.380

.572

Taveras followed up an excellent season in the Midwest League ins 2011 with what might have been an even better season in AA. Taveras was 20 years old for most of the season, but still crushed everything in sight. He was the biggest jumper in my midseason rankings, and he will absolutely be a top-5 prospect when my next list comes out.

Gary Brown (Giants)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

5

10

AA

134

538

73

7

42

33

40

87

.279

.347

.385

There were concerns about whether or not Brown would be able to repeat some semblance of what he did in the Cal League in 2011, and he sort of did. There was never really a good chance of him stealing 80 bases again, but the general thought was that he would hit for some power, steal more than a few bases, and hit well. I think that the final line we saw for this season is a pretty good approximation of what he could be in the Majors - decent average, probably going to be helped in SF by the big power alleys, and good speed.

Rymer Liriano (Padres)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

11

8

A+/AA

127

465

65

8

61

32

41

119

.280

.350

.417

Liriano started his season back in High-A, and was able to play well enough to get promoted to AA after the All-Star break. The strikeout rate remains a bit concerning for a player who doesn't appear to be hitting for a ton of power, but his game looks like it should still play even in cavernous Petco Park.

George Springer (Astros)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

18

13

A+/AA

128

506

109

24

87

32

62

156

.302

.383

.526

Springer was probably a bit too advanced for the Cal League when he arrived there this season, but the sheer amount of swing-and-miss in his game would lead me to believe that was what he was to work on specifically there. He's not going to be as bad as his AA numbers portrayed in 22 games (.217/.288/.342), but I could see him settling in right around .250 with both power and speed.

Robbie Grossman (Pirates/Astros)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

22

20

AA

131

485

81

10

47

13

77

121

.266

.376

.410

Grossman jumped up in the offseason after a great performance in the Arizona Fall League, combined with an excellent walk rate during the 2011 season. The walk rate stayed high, although with an expected drop as he moves up the levels. Grossman was likely the main piece acquired by the Astros in the Wandy Rodriguez trade, and could be in Houston by midseason 2013.

Christian Yelich (Marlins)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

13

9

A+

107

401

76

12

48

20

49

85

.329

.402

.516

The biggest concern about Yelich coming into the season seemed to be whether or not he could stay in the outfield, and specifically center field. His bat appears that it would play at any of the positions, but his value to both the Marlins and fantasy owners would be much better if he could stay in center field. He hit extremely well in a pitchers' league, and will likely be in AA to start 2013.

Josh Bell (Pirates)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

14

11

A

15

62

6

1

11

1

2

21

.274

.288

.403

Bell missed most of the season with an injury, and he's a bit behind on the development curve given his age. He will be 20 for most of next season, and with just the 62 at bats as a professional, he will likely spend a good portion of next year back in Low-A West Virginia.

Jorge Soler (Cubs)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

Not Eligible

3

Rk/A

34

134

28

5

25

12

12

19

.299

.369

.463

Soler signed during the season with the Cubs, and was sent to the Rookie League to start his career. The Cubs must have liked what they saw, as they promoted him to Low-A prior to the end of the season. Soler looks like he has the potential to be a monster in the outfield, showing all 5 tools at times and providing fantasy value across the categories. Definitely one to watch next season.

Brian Goodwin (Nationals)
Preseason Rank Midseason Rank Level G AB R HR RBI SB BB K AVG OBP SLG

HM

19

A/AA

100

382

64

14

52

18

61

89

.280

.384

.469

Goodwin started the season injured, but hit extremely well once he started playing in Low-A. The Nationals skipped him straight to AA (I imagine in small part due to their concerns about the field conditions in their High-A), and it showed a bit that he moved up two levels. He'll be back in AA to start next year most likely.

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker