M's 2005 Top 50 Prospects: No. 26-30

InsidethePark.com continues its countdown of the Top 50 prospects in the M's farm system. If the first two lists didn't do anything for ya, here comes number three. Enjoy prospects 26-30.



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InsideThePark Prospect No. 30
Josh Womack OF
Opening Day Age: 21
Height/Weight: 6-1/187
Bats/Throws: L/L
Acquired: Mariners 2nd round pick in 2002 draft

Year

Team

AVG.

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP

SLG

2004

Wisconsin

.260

5

39

76

24

34

126

.314

.374



Strengths:
Womack's athletic ability and versatility on the bases and in the field make him a multi-tooled player. What the San Diego natives lacks in natural baseball talent he can often make up for in athleticism.

Weaknesses:
In just over 200 games played, Womack has yet to show the leap of progress that the club wanted to see. The left-handed hitting outfielder never recovered from a sluggish start in the weathery Midwest League, but will have no excuses as he heads to year three.



Tools: Scout's Profiling Scale

Hitting for Average: 40
Womack hung tough in Wisconsin last season and finished with a .260 average, a number that translates 10 to 20 points higher in a region more conducive to hitting. Womack will probably never hit .300 on a consistent basis but if he makes significant progress in making more contact there is no reason why he can't hit .280, annually.

Hitting for Power: 40
Womack has the natural power to hit 12-14 home runs a season and could mature into the type of hitter that will maximize his power potential. Progress in his strikeout ratio is a must.

Speed: 60
Running is Womack's biggest strength, and not based solely on his plus speed. The 6-1, 185-pounder was successful on 24 of 31 stolen base attempts and reached back far enough to leg out nine triples. Using his speed as a much more effective weapon should be at the top of Womack's winter to-do list.

Glove: 60
Defensively, Womack has the ability to cover enough ground to play all three outfield spots but is best suited for left field. Much like current Mariner randy Winn, Womack uses his speed to cut off doubles in the gap and has good enough instincts to effectively play center field.

Arm: 50
Lacking the laser beam style right fielder's arm, Womack does throw well enough to play center field or left field on a regular basis. Better accuracy is needed to grade out any higher.



Future:
Womack heads to Inland Empire to play in the same outfield that started over 300 games for Wisconsin in 2004. This should be the year that Womack starts to put things together and hold his status as a solid prospect. The soon-to-be 21-year-old is likely a fringe major leaguer as a fourth outfielder.



MLB Clone: David Delucci, Lew Ford

MLB ETA: September 2007





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InsideThePark Prospect No. 29
Oswaldo Navarro 2B
Opening Day Age: 20
Height/Weight: 6-0/160
Bats/Throws: B/R
Acquired: Signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2001

Year

Team

AVG.

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP

SLG

2004

Wisconsin

.211

0

7

13

4

11

19

.295

.248

2004

Everett

.273

1

30

38

17

21

59

.331

.393



Strengths:
Navarro's game is speed and defense and the Venezuelan native is already astute at using his best talents. Navarro looks to be well on his way to improving his strikeouts-to-walks ratio and is 37 for 45 in stolen base attempts in his two-year career.

Weaknesses:
Without much power at the plate, Navarro must develop a better eye at the plate and turn himself into a leadoff type hitter. A few too many strikeouts and not enough extra-base hits lace the second baseman's resume, keeping him out of the top spot in the order.



Tools: Scout's Profiling Scale

Hitting for Average: 40
Navarro started the season with Wisconsin and struggled against more experienced pitching. After returning to Everett in June, the infielder found a groove of consistency and ended the season at a respectable .273. Navarro has problems putting good wood on pitches when down in the count.

Hitting for Power: 30
Seemingly without any power to speak of, Navarro might be maturing enough physically to develop the ability to hit the ball into the gap. His 27 doubles is evidence that he could potentially add a little pop down the road.

Speed: 65
One of the faster and smarter base runners in the system, Navarro should continue to make progress as a base stealer. Any ball hit into the gap is a triple in waiting for Navarro.

Glove: 70
Probably Navarro's most impressive attribute, the glove of the speedy middle-infielder is soft, sure-handed and the footwork around the bag at is already developed enough to operate at either shortstop or second base.

Arm: 45
Navarro is best suited at second base, mostly due to a slightly below average throwing arm. He is as accurate as there is and is capable of the acrobatic throws on a double play.



Future:
Navarro needs to continue to get stronger and add some bulk to enable the switch hitter to reach the alleys with the bat. Navarro will likely begin 2005 with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and could split time between shortstop and second base.



MLB Clone: Neifi Perez, Omar Infante

MLB ETA: 2008





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InsideThePark Prospect No. 28
Jon Nelson OF
Opening Day Age: 25
Height/Weight: 6-5/218
Bats/Throws: R/R
Acquired: Mariners 26th round pick in 2001

Year

Team

AVG.

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP

SLG

2004

Inland Empire

.303

19

95

83

26

25

154

.348

.497



Strengths:
Nelson's athleticism and raw power are very intriguing and his 64 extra-base hits and 26 steals indicate his ability to utilize both areas to his advantage.

Weaknesses:
Unpolished in the outfield, Nelson needs to refine his skills in left and somehow cut down on his strikeout totals. Moreso than the high whiff totals, the slugger need to be more selective at the plate and learn to take a walk now and then.



Tools: Scout's Profiling Scale

Hitting for Average: 55
Womack hung tough in Wisconsin last season and finished with a .260 average, a number that translates 10 to 20 points higher in a region more conducive to hitting. Womack will probably never hit .300 on a consistent basis but if he makes significant progress in making more contact there is no reason why he can't hit .280, annually.

Hitting for Power: 60
With more consistency, Nelson could maximize his power potential. Better plate discipline could launch Nelson's long ball total into the 30 range.

Speed: 55
Nelson runs very well for a 6-5, 220-pounder. This allows the Utah native to play the outfield without giving up range. His 26 steals were due to his better-than-average foot speed combined with solid ability to read pitchers.

Glove: 50
Nelson made the position switch this season and became a decent outfielder. Continued improvement in the field will improve Nelson's chances of making the big leagues.

Arm: 50
Nelson has a better-than-average throwing arm, though he is still learning how to use it from left field. More accuracy is needed to grade out any higher than average.



Future:
Nelson will be 25 when the season starts and that probably means that he needs to have a big 2005 to position himself for a chance at the majors before it's too late. The outfielder will begin the season in Double-A San Antonio.



MLB Clone: Josh Phelps, Derrek Lee

MLB ETA: September 2006





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InsideThePark Prospect No. 27
T.J. Bohn OF
Opening Day Age: 25
Height/Weight: 6-4/210
Bats/Throws: R/R
Acquired: Mariners 30th round pick in 2002

Year

Team

AVG.

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP

SLG

2004

Inland Empire

.283

7

37

46

6

44

61

.412

.433

2004

San Antonio

.264

7

29

24

6

22

46

.336

.436



Strengths:
Bohn is a patient hitter with solid plate skills and has a well-rounded defensive game. Bohn is one of the more polished hitters in the system and rarely gets himself out.

Weaknesses:
Bohn lacks the power to be a middle-of-the-order hitter, though his approach is fitting of such. At times, Bohn is overmatched against hard throwers and gets himself behind in the count when an experienced pitcher is on the mound.



Tools: Scout's Profiling Scale

Hitting for Average: 50
Bohn has the capacity to learn to be a pure, line-drive hitter that hits in the .280 range. Making the most of his at-bats is imperative for Bohn's future development.

Hitting for Power: 50
Inconsistency is the only thing stopping Bohn from blasting 20-25 home runs a season. Being selective is a strength for the 6-4 slugger, but getting the best pitch to hit and attacking it with vigor, isn't exactly Bohn's best attribute- but it could be.

Speed: 50
Not blessed with the fleetest of feet, Bohn gets the most from his average speed. Capable of covering enough ground to play some center field, Bohn projects best as a corner outfielder. An average runner on the bases, Bohn makes few errors and runs hard.

Glove: 55
If it weren't for the logjam in the outfield for the Triple-A Tacoma Rainiers, Bohn might break camp as their starting right fielder.

Arm: 65
Bohn has a very good throwing arm and has solid accuracy with each outfield assist. On occasion, Bohn will try to do too much with his arm and make throws that shouldn't be made. His arm, however, is a major asset.



Future:
Much like Jon Nelson, Bohn has little time to make something of his career. Bohn has a chance to be a useful player as a multi-tooled reserve outfielder but 2005 is a crucial year.



MLB Clone: Wes Helms, Marcus Thames

MLB ETA: September 2006





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InsideThePark Prospect No. 26
Hunter Brown 3B
Opening Day Age: 25
Height/Weight: 6-2/200
Bats/Throws: R/R
Acquired: Mariners 22nd round pick in 2002 draft

Year

Team

AVG.

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP

SLG

2004

San Antonio

.286

13

52

69

20

56

80

.379

.435



Strengths:
Brown has strong offensive skills with solid discipline and a good eye at the plate. The infielder is patient and has decent power. Defensively, Brown's versatility is valued attribute.

Weaknesses:
Brown is without a severe weakness but does have a tendency to be satisfied with being a doubles and singles hitter. More focus on a power attack could get Brown into the big leagues..



Tools: Scout's Profiling Scale

Hitting for Average: 55
Brown's line-drive stroke translates similarly to fellow Mariner farmhand Greg Dobbs, only from the right side. The 25-year-old is adept at working the count and taking his share of walks.

Hitting for Power: 50
Brown has average power that doesn't project well for a third baseman. Lacking the bat-speed to drive the ball consistently, the right-handed hitting Rice product relies mostly on gap power and doubles to pad his slugging percentage.

Speed: 50
Brown has above average speed and uses it well, as evidenced by his 20 steals and four triples. Not a threat to annoy pitchers as a base stealer, Brown uses good reads and an aggressive approach to get the extra base.

Glove: 65
Brown moves well laterally as a third baseman, and could project even better as a second baseman. Sure-handed and steady, the former Owls star can hold his own in the field, wherever the club decides to play him.

Arm: 55
Brown has an accurate, fairly strong arm that can handle the throws from third, but project as a plus tool at second base.



Future:
Brown will likely find a role as a starter in Triple-A Tacoma. Whether it's at third base or second will be determined this spring as the club sifts through the crop at the hot corner. More experience around the bag at second could make Brown a solid future option for the M's after Bret Boone's time with the organization is over.



MLB Clone: Jeff Kent, Mark Grudzielanek

MLB ETA: 2006











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