2006 Ranking: 10
School: Simi Valley High School (Simi Valley, CA)
Cardinal: Selected in the fourth round of the June, 2005 First-Year Player
Draft. Received a $250,000 signing bonus. 2006 AVG. AB H HR RBI R SB BB K OBP. SLG OPS
Jason Scott (6): Anderson rose six spots in both my personal rankings and our staff rankings. Having just recently turned 20-years-old, Anderson had an excellent 2006 season for Quad Cities, hitting .302 with a .377 OBP. He also showed pretty good plate discipline, drawing 42 walks compared to 66 strikeouts. Defensively, he has a strong arm but he did lead the Midwest League with 17 passed balls this past season.
It will be interesting to see where the Cardinals send him this season. My guess is that they will start him out at Palm Beach and promote him to Springfield sometime during the season.
Leonda Markee (4): I ranked Bryan Anderson as the second-best position prospect in the Cardinals' system in 2007. He put up good numbers in his first full season of professional ball after having skipped the short-season level. Anderson did it as a 19-year-old as well. In fact Anderson was the youngest player in the system with 200 or more at bats in 2006.
Defensively, early in the season Anderson split the catching duties with Brandon Yarbrough but became Quad Cities' full-time catcher after Yarbrough's May 22nd promotion. Opposing managers praised his advanced handling of a pitching staff and his arm has been rated as average with accurate throws. Anderson needs to work on his pitch-blocking skills behind the plate.
Offensively, Anderson's .377 on-base-percentage was fifth in the system and his .302 batting average was sixth (200 or more at bats). He struck out an average of 1:5.51 at bats which is nearly identical to his 2005 numbers of 1:5.31 at bats. Anderson's 2006 walk rate of 1:10.3 plate appearances is a bit improved over 2005 when he walked once every 11.7 plate appearances. Anderson's .417 slugging percentage was only 26th in the system and is an area that most needs to improve. However, he is young and the power can still develop. Anderson will be the Palm Beach Cardinals' regular catcher in 2007.
Ray Mileur (3): The Cardinals may actually have a catcher in the pipeline that can hit. Bryan Anderson hit .302/.377/.417 in 109 games for Swing of the Quad Cities in the Midwest League. Anderson showed an effective line drive bat and good plate discipline, drawing 42 walks with 66 strikeouts in 381 at-bats. His power is marginal at this point, but he did hit 29 doubles, a sign of more homers to come down the road. He also played better than expected defensively.
We know he can hit and he is improving defensively. Anderson spent a lot of time working with the Cardinals regular catcher Yadier Molina in spring training last season. Actually Molina would pick him up everyday from the hotel and take him to Roger Dean Stadium and tutored Bryan in the finer points of defense behind the plate.
Don't be surprised to see 20-year-old Anderson to start the '07 season at Double-A Springfield.
Brian Walton (4): Anderson seems clearly ready to assume the mantle of the Cardinals' best catching prospect. We are talking here about a guy who has been out of high school just a year and a half and was highly-ranked in the Top 20 Appalachian League prospects.
Upon moving up to Quad Cities in 2006, Anderson continued to hit for average (.302) with 51 RBI as well as maintain a solid on base percentage of .377. Nice line-drive power numbers are beginning to emerge as 35 of his 115 hits went for extra bases. The best part is that the left-handed hitter just turned 20 a few weeks ago.
Perhaps unlike his predecessor as the Cardinals' top catching prospect, Daric Barton, Anderson will be kept around. Perhaps unlike Barton, his defense will develop enough so he can remain at the position. This remains a question, however. Hopefully, we will see at Palm Beach and then Springfield this coming season.
STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking), NR = Not RatedTo see our entire list of 40 prospects as they are unveiled daily, click here.
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