Top 100 Prospects: Nos. 56-60

Ranking the Top 100 minor-leaguers has been a fun project for more than 15 years at Indians Ink. Our current issue available at newsstands or by ordering online from this site, takes a look at players headed towards helping the Indians in Cleveland in the future. We'll share them here in the coming weeks, five at a time. This quintet includes a relatively unheralded catcher making strides.

Jeremie Tice
Sept. 25, 1986, in Snellville, GA
Position: Third base-first base
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 6-1/225
Acquired: Sixth-round pick in 2008 Draft from College of Charleston (SC).
Strengths: After solid start to begin 2010 at Lake County (.282-9-51), didn't skip a beat when elevated to Kinston (.283-5-28) where he helped carry offense in second half. Drives ball to all parts of the park with tremendous raw power.
Weaknesses: Strikes out too much (106 times in 436 at-bats in 2010). Average defender was used at first base and designated hitter at Kinston. Must work on his footwork.
2011 Projection: Will likely start season at Kinston.

Austin Adams
Aug. 19, 1986, in Millbrook, AL
Position: Relief pitcher
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 5-11/185
Acquired: Fifth-round pick in 2009 Draft from Faulkner University (AL).
Strengths: Put himself on radar screen by going 6-1 with a 1.53 ERA in 13 games (12 starts) at Kinston after a 2-4, 3.54 ERA mark at Lake County to open 2010. Fastball hovers in mid-90s and tops out in upper 90s. Clean delivery. Good breaking ball that has late break. Has "stuff" to be outstanding at back end of bullpen.
Weaknesses: A converted shortstop with very limited pitching experience. Didn't take the mound until his last year of college. Still needs to build up stamina. Still learning to set up hitters. Must improve off-speed pitches.
2011 Projection: Should contend for spot in Akron's rotation, or could end up at Kinston is he moves to the bullpen.

Abner Abreu
Oct. 24, 1989, in San Pedro de Macoris, DR
Position: Outfielder
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 6-3/175
Acquired: Signed as non-drafted free agent, Oct. 4, 2006.
Strengths: Extremely quick hands. Has raw power potential from a whip-like swing. Made switch from third base. Very strong throwing arm and decent speed.
Weaknesses: Missed second half of 2009 with shoulder injury and rustiness lingered throughout 2010. Power dropped (four homers) and strikeouts soared (130). Focus wanders at bat, in field. Average on defense. Despite good arm, had zero double plays from outfield.
2011 Projection: Back to Kinston, to see if he can hit like he did (.305) in half season at Lake County in 2009.

Tyler Holt
March 10, 1989, in Gainesville, FL
Position: Outfielder
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 5-11/190
Acquired: 10th-round pick in 2010 Draft from Florida State.
Strengths: Speed and quickness play in field and on bases. Disciplined hitter can drive ball into gaps. Shows top-of-lineup skills, plays well in center or left field. Fundamentally sound.
Weaknesses: Limited arm, not a power hitter and shouldn't try to be. Needs to improve "small ball" skills, bunting, moving runners ahead, taking the extra base.
2011 Projection: Opens season in Lake County outfield.

Chun Chen
Nov. 11, 1988, in Hualian County, Taiwan
Position: Catcher
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 6-1/200
Acquired: Signed as non-drafted free agent, Sept. 14, 2007.
Strengths: Big breakout with bat in 2010, batting .315 with 12 homers and 69 RBI combined at Lake County and Kinston. Regarded as solid defender with accurate throwing arm. Willing to work count, draw a walk.
Weaknesses: Hit only .215 in 2009 at Mahoning Valley – so Indians hope that was the mirage and not the good 2010. Still learning finer aspects behind the plate, where there is so much to handle.
2011 Projection: Opens season at Kinston, with eye toward Akron.

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