The four full season affiliates have had a rough start to the 2008 campaign. Tucson's 2-16 record is the worst in team history through 18 games, Visalia has gone 3-11 since beginning the year 4-0, and South Bend is off to an even colder start than usual at 2-14. Only the Mobile BayBears are holding their heads high with a 9-8 record. As a result, we're only listing 20 prospects this week rather than our usual 25.
It's no secret that the Arizona Diamondbacks traded away several great prospects this winter. While a stellar draft by Tom Allison has replenished the system, many of these players are playing at higher levels than they would have done if the organizational depth were as strong as before. There are still plenty of great prospects in the organization, but several of them are struggling out of the gate due to their aggressive affiliate placement.
One prospect in particular stands out. Max Scherzer is not only the hottest and best prospect in the Diamondbacks organization, but the hottest in all of baseball, and certainly ranks among one of the best.
Remember, these rankings chronicle the hottest organizational prospects who are making the most of their opportunity, not the best prospects overall. For the top 50 prospects in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, click here.
Note: Stats are accurate as of Sunday, April 20th.
|1||1||SP Max Scherzer||Tuc||Adds another unbelievable start, now 17 IP, 29 K, 3 BB, 7 H, 0.00 ERA|
|2||3||SP Matt Torra||Mob||3-0, 0.75, 13 K, 0 BB - Would rank #1 in almost any other organization|
|3||2||OF Gerardo Parra||Vis||3 triples and 3 more walks than strikeouts headline Parra's achievements|
|4||-||3B Ricardo Sosa||Vis||14-for-his-last-26 (.538) with 2 HR & 6 RBI|
|5||6||SP Cesar Valdez||Vis||Now 3-0 with 1.96 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and nearly a strikeout per inning|
|6||11||3B Cesar Nicolas||Mob||Batted .500 during 7-game hit streak before he got hit in the elbow during BP|
|7||9||1B Mike Mee||SB||Leads Hawks with absurd .470 OPB: 13 BB, 6 K|
|8||17||RP Josh Ellis||Vis||11 scoreless innings, 6 base runners allowed|
|9||14||SS Yunesky Sanchez||Mob||Still hasn't walked, but you can't argue with batting .417 after skipping a level|
|10||13||RP Abe Woody||Mob||Un-scored upon through 10.2 innings|
|11||-||C Wilkin Castillo||Tuc||Batting .407 over his last 10 games|
|12||4||OF Evan Frey||SB||BA falling, but still has 10-game hit streak|
|13||21||IF Matt Oxendine||SB||Hitting .324; could be promoted soon|
|14||22||RP Forrest Cory||Mob||Now 9-0 since June of last year|
|15||-||SP Josh Collmenter||SB||Last 2 starts: 10 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 10 K, 1 BB|
|16||24||RP Chad Beck||SB||1.42 ERA, 0.87 WHIP in 12.2 workhorse relief innings|
|17||10||SP Adam Howard||Mob||Fell back to Earth in his last start, but overall numbers still impressive|
|18||-||RP Jose Marte||Vis||Nippert's replacement is unscored upon in his last 7 innings|
|19||-||OF Aaron Hanke||SB||Low BA, but drawing walks, showing some pop, and has 3 outfield assists already|
|20||15||OF Peter Clifford||Vis||Cooling off, but still has 5 doubles, 10 walks|
Three To Watch:
- SP Tony Barnette (Mobile), who has allowed just two earned runs in his last two starts (2.44 ERA)
- SP Bryan Augenstein (South Bend), who rebounded in Kane County after a disastrous start in Lansing
- RP Thomas Layne (South Bend), who pitched three scoreless frames on Sunday and has a 2.57 ERA over his last three appearances
- C Ed Easley (8) went 0-for-6 Saturday and has just one extra base hit in his last 8 starts.
- OF Tim Raines (7) saw his BA fall from .448 to .291 in one week - you do the math.
- 1B Josh Whitesell (5) hit three home runs early, then no extra base hits since April 11.
Disagree with our rankings? Have a question about a prospect? Just plain lonely? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your concerns.