Continuing our look at Minor Leaguers on the verge of the majors. These players should only need a bit more refining in the minors or an opportunity to open up before they get the call to the bigs.
Jarrod Parker - It may be a long shot for him to make the rotation a year removed from Tommy John Surgery but if Parker picks up where he left off in 2009 we could see him in a Diamondbacks uniform by the end of the year. The main obstacle will be re-gaining his control which was already shaky before the surgery. He has Ace-like stuff and good groundball skills so if he can harness his command he should continue his rapid ascent to the majors. Keep an eye on his return as he could end up a nice pick up for the playoff run.
Brad Emaus - Emaus will be given a look in spring training with a chance to earn the Mets starting 2B job. He is a long shot to win it but could find himself with the job sometime in the summer. He does everything well but few things great. He hits for some power while stealing some bases. Where he sets himself apart is with his patience. He walked more than he struck out in AAA last year and could be a good source of OBP if given the starting role. Watch how Luis Castillo and Reese Havens perform early in the year as they are his main competition.
Tyler Flowers - Expected to take the catching job away from AJ Pierzynski midway through 2010, Flowers struggled with contact and remained in the minors. In 2011 Flowers will be given another shot to prove he deserves the full time role behind the plate in Chicago. He has top notch power for a catcher and could approach 25 HR in a full season. He strikes out too much to have a good AVG but if he gets the Ks under control he could be somewhere around .270. It's too early to give up on Flowers who before 2010 looked like one of the best catching prospects in fantasy.
Brandon Allen - With Juan Miranda the probable starter at first in Arizona Brandon Allen will start the season back in AAA. Allen is athletic for his size and showed a marked improvement in his plate discipline last year. He probably won't develop into a star but he should prove sometime in 2011 that he no longer belongs in the minors. If Miranda struggles it's time to keep an eye on Allen as he should be getting a call up soon.
Nick Weglarz - Weglarz has failed to repeat the success of his first full pro season thanks to injuries. When healthy enough to play he shows excellent patience and solid power. With the Indians in rebuilding mode there could be room for Weglarz in their outfield by the end of 2011. Health is the biggest obstacle standing in his way but if he can manage to play a full season he could give you 25 HR and a .370 OBP.