As you have already seen so far this week, we're taking a comprehensive look at one position each week in preparation for the fantasy baseball season. That look would not be complete without a look at the future as well, and with that in mind we will be providing a top prospect list at each position also. While I won't be ranking the same amount of prospect at each position, the goal is to provide enough that will be fantasy relevant in both shallow and deeper formats.
These rankings represent how I view the players at this time, and speak to their value long-term. This means that players like Forrest Wall, who has a higher upside but is a bit further away than some of the other prospects, is ranked higher here based on what his future potential is, rather than his 2015 value.
1. Addison Russell (CHC)
His future at the position became a little less clear with the trade to the Cubs, but Russell can be a potential fantasy monster at any position he ends up at. I'll have a profile on him later on today.
2. Carlos Correa (HOU)
He missed a significant portion of the 2014 season with an injury, but the ceiling on Correa is immense. Brian Creagh will have a profile on Correa on Thursday.
3. Corey Seager (LAD)
Seager has jumped into the three spot with a strong performance at High-A and AA in 2014, and could well be in Los Angeles by the end of the season. He's a potential 25+ home run, high average hitter who appears to have a better chance of staying at shortstop than was previously thought. His bat will play at either short or third base, and neither position is particularly blocked for him, and we could see him as the everyday starter at either position in 2016.
4. J.P. Crawford (PHI)
With franchise stalwart Jimmy Rollins now in Los Angeles, Crawford has a clear path to the shortstop job when he is ready. He is a potential .285 hitter with 10-15 home runs, 20-25 stolen bases, and a high run total in waiting, and will likely head to AA to start 2015.
5. Francisco Lindor (CLE)
We wrote pretty extensively last week about Lindor when we ranked him as our top fantasy prospect in the Indians' system, and he could be the starter for Cleveland by midseason potentially.
6. Tim Anderson (CHW)
I wrote up Anderson as our #2 prospect in the White Sox system last week, who could be an above-average contributor in four categories. There are questions about whether he will stay at shortstop long-term, which keep him from being ranked a bit higher on this list.
7. Nick Gordon (MIN)
Gordon gets a bit overlooked with the strength of the top of this list, but he can potentially be a top 10 option at the position down the line on the strength of a high batting average and above-average speed. He's not likely to be in the majors for at least four seasons though, so there's a lot of time and potential development between now and then.
8. Raul Mondesi (KCR)
Mondesi spent the 2014 season at High-A as an 18-year old, and while the production didn't look amazing, it did little to diminish what Mondesi can potentially be: a high batting average, high stolen base provider who can be among the top 10 at the shortstop position on a regular basis.
9. Daniel Robertson (TAM)
The key prospect acquired in the Ben Zobrist trade, Robertson can be an interesting prospect capable of providing solid production across all give categories, and the potential to stay at shortstop is better than was thought a year ago.
10. Trea Turner (WAS)
Turner remains in organizational limbo as the player-to-be-named in a trade between the Rays, Padres and Nationals, and it's not clear how that will affect his development long-term. He should provide a high batting average to go along with above-average stolen base totals, and could move to the majors fairly quickly once he gets back on the field.
11. Franklin Barreto (OAK)
Barreto was the key prospect returned for Josh Donaldson, and is likely the long-term answer at shortstop for the A's. He can potentially be a solid five-category contributor, but is likely 3-4 years away from the majors.
12. Willy Adames (TAM)
Another shortstop acquired in the past year by the Rays, Adames can potentially be a solid producer across all five categories. He is still likely at least three seasons away from the majors, and there are questions about whether he will end up moving off the position in the future.
13. Gleyber Torres (CHC)
One of the Cubs' top July 2 singings from the 2013 signing period, Torres is another potentially broad producer who should provide an excellent batting average and solid power and speed down the line. He's still just 18 years old, and could be in line for a full season assignment in 2015.
14. Ozhaino Albies (ATL)
Albies emerged in 2014 as a potential high-speed, high contact middle infield option, but is likely at least four seasons away from the majors. The best case scenario is that he provides a .280+ batting average and 40+ stolen bases, but the distance from the majors keeps him down this list.
15. Michael Chavis (BOS)
A 2014 draftee, there is very little expectation that Chavis will be able to stay at shortstop down the line, but played the majority of his time there this year. He can provide batting average with some power. How much power will determine how high he can move up the rankings.
HM: Trevor Story (COL)
Story has posted solid counting stats at each stop in the minors so far, but the batting average risk and lack of a clear spot to play in the short-term keep him off the back end of this list.