As if there was any doubt. Bill Shanks has covered the Atlanta Braves for a long time and had never heard the fan base chant for a player - not even Chipper Jones. Jason Heyward received the honor in his first at-bat. He is all the hype and more - a combination of prodigious power and plate awareness gives him a lethal tool set to annually play at an All-Star level.
It's not very common that you hear of legit 80 power on the 20-80 scouting scale, but scouts are almost unanimous in their praise of Stanton's enormous pop. He is an impressive athlete for a big man, and has drawn Willie Stargell and Dave Winfield comparisons at times.
Desmond Jennings – Tampa Bay Rays
The Rays know how good Carl Crawford and B.J. Upton have been and see Jennings surpassing both with his talent. A gifted athlete that is a plus defender in center field, Jennings is also a threat offensively. He has plus wheels, is continuing to develop more power, and has high average potential.
A very mature and level-headed prospect, Brown showed a glimpse of what he is capable of with an impressive spring. The left-handed hitting Brown has all the tools to be an above-average regular with his blossoming power and impressive speed.
A huge player, Taylor was dealt twice in the span of a few days this off-season, landing in Oakland where many think he could be a fixture in the heart of their lineup for years to come. Taylor has plus power to all fields, a solid hit tool, and enough speed to be dangerous in all phases.
On the back of a ridiculous spring performance, Trout is proving those scouts that raved about him last fall, correct. Though still young and raw, Trout has the potential at the plate and in the field to be a true impact player with game-changing abilities. Once he fine tunes his strike zone, he could absolutely take off.
The international market's top player in 2009, the Twins were a surprise entrant into the bidding for Sano, landing the 16-year old phenom for a seven-figure bonus. Already a physical presence, Sano isn't done growing and filling out his frame. He has serious tools across the board, and he could be a dynamic offensive force.
Ben Revere – Minnesota Twins
The Twins have been very patient with Revere, allowing him to develop at his own pace, and steadily work his way towards Minnesota. He is an above-average to plus runner with the ability to swipe bases and hit for a great average. He lacks power, and isn't likely to hold down center field, but what he does well, he does very well.
It's been a while since Tabata was considered a top prospect, and most scouts wondered if he would ever match the tools or the hype. He has improved significantly over the last year, showing a better body, and improved ability to handle center field, and he still maintains his plus hit tool and potential above-average power.
2010 Watch List:
More about potential after missing instructs and netting a shoulder injury during spring. He has the prototypical body that scouts crave and a plethora of tools that need refinement. He was overmatched at times in camp and may have to wait until short-season for his official debut. While he is raw, if he puts the package together, Tate can be an elite player.
The owner of a five-tool package that can make scouts drool, Beltre is held back only by his aggressive approach at the plate. If he can somehow refine his approach, he could be a dangerous offensive and defensive threat.
Jaff Decker – San Diego Padres
Questions will follow Decker, but he worked hard to trim down this offseason, checking in 10-15 pounds lighter. A hamstring injury has slowed the start to 2010 but the 20-year-old is built to hit third in the lineup with great patience and the ability to do damage.
There is nothing in Jackson's game that stands out as a true plus tool, but he does a lot of things very well. He is an above-average runner, defender, and thrower. He hits for average, and most scouts still see power in his future. He could be a solid MLB center fielder for a long time.
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