Baseball's Top 10 Third Base Prospects

The prerequisite for third baseman is a power bat that can hit in the middle of an order. These prospects have the goods to make an instant impact at the major league level. Find out if your team's prospects made the list.

1. Pedro AlvarezPittsburgh Pirates

Alvarez profiles as an monstrous offensive threat with 30-40 home run potential along with a solid concept of the strike zone. There are lingering questions about his ability to stay at third base, but a bat with this type of potential will play anywhere; and possibly as soon as mid-2010.

2. Josh VittersChicago Cubs

Vitters is a contact hitter that has plus power and high average potential. While he won't draw many walks and will swing outside the zone, getting himself out, Vitters is a pure hitter that will do damage in the middle of a lineup. He has tremendous baseball instincts and innate ability but struggles putting learned knowledge into application. His progress defensively has been slow, and it is possible that Vitters ends up in the outfield.

3. Mike MoustakasKansas City Royals

The numbers haven't always been pretty for Moustakas, but the profile remains the same. With a natural ability for squaring up balls with the meat of the bat, impressive raw power, and a strong arm, Moustakas has the potential to be a classic third baseman that strikes fear into the opposition. He needs more time to meet those lofty goals.

4. Brett WallaceToronto Blue Jays

A pure hitter with high average potential, Wallace has a refined approach at the plate. He is susceptible to bouts of strikeouts as his stance is predicated on timing with a leg kick. As he learns to turn on the inside pitch, Wallace's power numbers will continue to rise. Moving Wallace to first base seems to be favored by the Blue Jays staff although he is capable at third.

5. Matt DominguezFlorida Marlins

One of the best third base defenders in the minor leagues, Dominguez can truly pick it at the hot corner with an above-average arm. His offensive profile bills him as a player that should hit for a solid average with fringy power for a corner infield position, but when you combine that with his outstanding glove work, you have a solid prospect.

6. James DarnellSan Diego Padres

A mix of patience and power, Darnell is still refining his swing. He has added a touch of loft to tap into his power potential and creates natural backspin. He has thick legs that he is able to incorporate into his swing, adding to his power potential. Defensively, he rushes his footwork and throws. Once he is able to maintain his balance and slow the game down at the hot corner, Darnell should be fine.

7. Josh BellBaltimore Orioles

With very little standing in his way, Bell is on the verge of bursting down the big league door, and becoming a strong offensive and defensive player as a part of the Orioles future. Bell has very good raw power that stands out as part of his broad offensive package, and a solid glove to boot.

8. Lonnie ChisenhallCleveland Indians

Armed with a line drive swing that has added some loft in the last season, Chisenhall will be an annual .300 threat. He is a tireless worker that has added strength to his frame but can get into trouble when he gets power hungry – adding unnecessary holes to his swing. He needs to maintain his simple approach and the power will come as he fills out his frame. Moved over from shortstop, Chisenhall is a capable defender.

9. Bobby BorcheringArizona Diamondbacks

If there was a player on this list that could fly up the rankings, Borchering would be that player. He has the offensive profile to be an elite hitter with a solid glove and a plus arm from across the diamond. It may take some time, but Borchering certainly merits attention. Better pitch selection will be vital to reaching his immense potential.

10. Logan Forsythe – San Diego Padres

If big league camp was any indication, Forsythe is very close to contributing at the big league level. He has patience, a line drive stroke that figures to be conducive to Petco Park, and is solid defensively. Forsythe could stand to be more aggressive early in the count with men in scoring position. There has been talk of moving Forsythe over to second base.

Three to watch:

Edinson Rincon – San Diego Padres

Few believe he can stay at the hot corner, but Rincon has the type of bat that can play anywhere on the diamond. He has plus power potential, uncanny patience for his age, and high average potential. Where he ends up defensively is anyone's guess.

Dayan ViciedoChicago White Sox

Viciedo was a high profile prospect a year ago, and while the offensive numbers don't stand out from 2009, he showed plenty after an aggressive assignment to Double-A. Though he'll never be a patient hitter, Viciedo should be a positive with the bat, and that should help if he has to move across the diamond to first base.

Cheslor Cuthbert – Kansas City Royals

Scouts drool over his raw tool set. At 17, the Nicaraguan has plenty of time to reach his potential. He has plus bat speed and power potential and simply needs the experience. He has a lot of movement in his swing mechanics that will need to be cleaned up but has a strong base and fast twitch muscles through the zone.

Join Scout.com Senior Minor League Baseball Analyst Mark Anderson on Twitter at http://twitter.com/TigsTownMark

Join Scout.com MiLB Senior Editor Denis Savage on Twitter at http://twitter.com/madfriars


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