The FutureBacks Fifty: Orientation

It just wouldn't be fair. If we just dropped it and ran, just gave you the information with no idea how to use it. So here you go, a quick breakdown of what you need to know and why. The FutureBacks Fifty begins today, here's how we did it, and what you need to know.

The list will be disclosed in five segments starting on Monday December 21st.  Every Monday we will publish ten rankings starting at No. 50 and ending with No. 1. We will offer a little blurb on each player once we release the rankings, however, the gravy will be after the entire list has been unveiled. will be following the release of the prospect list with an individual scouting report on every player on the list, after talking with minor league coaches and baseball scouts to gaze their input on the player. The Individual Scouting Report will also include quotes from the players, scouts, front office personnel and coaches.

Disagree?  Have questions we haven't answered?  Never fear.  We'll also start a regular question and answer session, which will begin on Saturday December 3rd, where you'll be able to send your questions and complaints about the list, and we'll defend ourselves.

How was the list compiled?   First and foremost, we've seen them all.  The experts at dropped some mad coin on travel expenses, and this is where it went.  Next, we consulted scouting directors, minor league coaches, and two MLB scouts, and all of their opinions were factored in.  We fed it all into a precise formula (the same one that the BCS uses) and the end result is the FutureBacks Fifty.  It was a full year in the making, it took two months to compile, and it will take two more to release.

Who is eligible for the list?  Anyone who qualifies for the MLB Rookie of the Year award.

What did FutureBacks look for when making the list?   The list is based on a players' overall potential to have a successful career in the major leagues, and his overall potential as a baseball player.  Are they stars to be?  Role players?  Bench contributers?  Will they make the bigs at all?

The Top 50 prospects in the Diamondbacks system.  In year two of the FutureBacks Fifty the first question has to'd we do last year? 

The answer is, not too bad.  Eleven of our 50 prospects played in the bigs last year, 10 of them with the D'Backs.  The next question would likely be, 'How much is it really going to change?'

A whole bunch.  New faces, rising and falling stocks, injuries, position changes, setbacks, steps forward.  This list could literally change month to month if we wanted it to. 

And we want to hear from you.  Each week we'll have our question and answer section on the front page, but for a little more immediate reaction, read, enjoy, and then head to our Message Boards and discuss.  We get a lot right, we miss a couple, and you get to decide.  In fact, here's a primer for you.  This is last years FutureBacks Fifty, #1-#50.5.  Take a look, and compare.  The 2005 FutureBacks Fifty is on the way.

2004 Top 50

1)  Carlos Quentin 18)  Chris Carter 35)  Jaime D'Antona
2)  Conor Jackson 19)  Justin Wechsler 36)  Steve Garrabrants
3)  Sergio Santos 20)  Carlos Gonzales 37)  Jesus Cota
4)  Greg Aquino 21)  Garrett Mock 38)  Brian Barden
5)  Josh Kroeger 22)  Alex Frazier 39)  Enmanual Duran
6) Tony Pena 23)  Dioneer Navarro 40)  Jay Garthwaite
7)  Jon Zeringue 24)  Clint Goocher 41)  Phil Avlas
8)  Enrique Gonzalez 25)  Danny Muegge 42)  Jared Doyle
9)  Marland Williams 26)  Matt Chico 43)  Jerry Gil
10)  Jason Bulger 27)  Koyie Hill 44)  Adam Bass
11)  Dustin Nippert 28)  Jarred Ball 45)  Alexander Cremidan
12)  Michael Gosling 29)  Kyle Nichols 46)  Sergio Lizzaraga
13)  Bill Murphy 30)  Phil Stockman 47)  Erik Schindewolf
14)  A. J. Shappi 31)  Jered Liebeck 48)  Chris Snyder
15)  Corey Myers 32)  Tim Vaillancourt 49)  Orlando Mercado
16)  Edgar Gonzalez 33)  Mike Schultz 50)  Noochie Varner
17)  Brian Bruney 34)  Reggie Abercrombie 50.5)  Stephen Drew



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