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Down on the Farm: Prospect Profiles From Project Prospect's Top 10 List

Last week, Adam Foster posted his Top 10 prospects for 2010 over at his site, Project Prospect. Adam has been blogging about prospects for several years now, and he takes a slightly different approach to analyzing prospects, preferring to look at the prospect's potential floor, rather than his potential celing.







Jason Heyward


Has the skills to turn into one of baseball's best hitters; back injury is a concern


Desmond Jennings


Solid bet to surface as an above-average big leaguer, with his D and contact bat


Jesus Montero


Sick power bat and an elite contact hitter, though he's probably not a catcher


Stephen Strasburg


May emerge as a No. 1 as soon as '10; painful mechanics will lead to arm injury


Carlos Santana


Power-hitting catcher with outstanding patience; could become a plus defender


Dustin Ackley


In convo for decade's best college hitter; patient LD bat and good defensive OF


Brian Matusz


Command pitcher with a power arsenal and MLB track record; potential No. 1-2


Buster Posey


Polished all-around hitter and a solid defender; very high floor as well as ceiling


Justin Smoak


Elite patience and power to go along with good contact skills; limited to 1B on D


Fernando Martinez

Plus power and contact skills could allow him to ascend to stardom one day


Interesting that he thinks Strasburg's mechanics will eventually lead to an arm injury. Also interesting, there are 4 NL players and 6 AL players.

Here are a few snippets from his Top 10 Prospect report that he made available to me:

Jason Heyward: Patient and comfortable hitting to the opposite field, he's an elite contact hitter with above-average power. A polished hitter who could easily surface as an above-average big leaguer, Heyward has the skills to eventually blossom into one of baseball's best all-around hitters. He'll enter 2010 as the popular pick for top hitting prospect in baseball.

Fernando Martinez: He was the youngest hitter in AA in 2008 and in AAA in 2009, and is the youngest player ever to play in the Arizona Fall League as an 18 year old back in 2006. With big league bat speed and lightning-quick wrists, he has the potential to put up elite power and contact rates. His biggest question mark is his ability to stay on the field. Martinez has yet to play more than 90 regular season games in one season. It's easy to become impatient with players who have trouble staying healthy. But Martinez isn't someone to overlook. He could be one healthy season away from putting it all together. And if that happens, he has a chance to curface as an all-star caliber outfielder.

Jesus Montero: Big and strong, Montero has special power. He put together one of the Eastern League's best HR/Air rates (11.30%) despite being its youngest hitter. It's rare for guys as tall as he is to stick behind the plate. And his current defensive game leaves plenty of room for improvement-footwork and receiving in particular-though he does have a strong arm. It's much more likely that he'll be a 1B/DH in the majors. Montero's outstanding bat speed and easy power could make him an annual 30+ HR threat. Looking at offense alone, there's a case to be made that Montero's the best hitting prospect in baseball.