Diehard Top 50: By The Numbers

Counting down the top Red Sox farmhands over the last four years at Diehard Magazine and DiehardMagazine.com has given us a lot of numbers to play with. Here's a by-the-numbers look at the history of the Diehard Top 50.

1.) Player has been in the top 10 all four years: Brandon Moss. He ranked second in 2005, sixth in 2006 and fifth in both 2007 and 2008. Also Beau Vaughan, who ranked 13th in 2005 and ranks 49th this year, is the only player to appear in the first and fourth rankings but neither the second nor the third.

2.) Future Rookies of the Year in the Diehard Top 50: Hanley Ramirez, who was no. 1 in our inaugural list in 2005, won the 2006 National League Rookie of the Year while Dustin Pedroia, who ranked ninth in 2005, fourth in 2006 and third in 2007, won the 2007 American League ROY. Also the number of no-hitters thrown by players ranked in the countdown: Anibal Sanchez and Clay Buchholz.

3.) Number of players who have been on all four countdowns. Moss, Tommy Hottovy (17th in 2005, 42nd in 2006, 16th in 2007 and 46th in 2008) and Chad Spann (18th in 2005, 30th in 2006, 15th in 2007 and 45th in 2008). Also the number of players that have been ranked no. 1: Hanley Ramirez (2005), Jonathan Papelbon (2006) and Clay Buchholz (2007 and 2008).

4.) Number of undrafted American free agents who have made the countdown: Chad Rhoades (2006 signee, ranked 43rd this year), Hunter Jones (2005 signee, ranked 21st this year), John Otness (2004 signee, ranked 41st in 2006 and 30th in 2007) and Charlie Zink (2002 signee, ranked 44th in 2006).

5.) Rule 5 draftees have been a regular presence on the countdown. Adam Stern (25th) and Jamie Vermilyea (26th) placed on the 2006 list while Nick DeBarr (28th) made the 2007 rankings. None of the three is still with the Sox. In addition, Jose Capellan (49th in 2007) was selected by the Giants in December's Rule 5 draft and is currently with the Reds.

6.) Number of 2002 draftees who have appeared on the countdown, led by Jon Lester, who was the Sox' first pick that year (57th overall).

7.) Number of 2007 draftees who debuted on the countdown this year, led by Nick Hagadone, who was the Sox' first pick (55th overall).

8.) Number of players on the 2005 countdown who have been traded by the Sox, led by top prospect Ramirez.

9.) Number of 2003 draftees who have appeared on the countdown, led by David Murphy, who was the Sox' first pick that year (17th overall).

10.) Number of players on the countdown who were acquired from another organization by a method other than the Rule 5 draft.

11.) Number of 2004 draftees who have appeared on the countdown, led by Pedroia, who was the Sox' first pick that year (65th overall).

12.) Players who have used up their rookie eligibility. The latest addition: Kason Gabbard, who was ranked 19th in 2007.

13.) Number of players who have ranked in the top five of the countdown.

14.) Number of 2005 draftees who have appeared on the countdown, led by Jacoby Ellsbury, who was the Sox' first pick that year (23rd overall).

15.) Number of teenagers who have appeared on the countdown.

16.) Five players who have appeared on the countdown were signed as 16-year-olds: Ramirez, Edgar Martinez (13th in 2006, 13th in 2007, 35th in 2008). Felix Doubront (42nd in 2007), Oscar Tejada (18th in 2008) and Argenis Diaz (30th in 2008).

17.) Number of 2006 draftees who have appeared on the countdown, led by Jason Place, who was the Sox' first pick that year (27th overall).

18.) Number of spots Mike Rozier fell in 2007 (from no. 18 to no. 36), the largest drop.

19.) Number of players in the 2006 countdown who are no longer in the Sox organization.

20.) Number of players who have ranked in the top 10.

21.) Number of players who have made three or more appearances on the countdown.

22.) Number of newcomers this year, led by Lars Anderson at no. 7.

25.) Number of players who have made two appearances on the countdown.

26.) Number of newcomers in 2007, led by Bryce Cox at no. 6. Also the number of players in our first countdown. We added an extra player because the Sox acquired Ian Bladergroen from the Mets just before our deadline and we thought he was a future big leaguer. Whoops.

30.) Number of spots Spann (from no. 15 to no. 45) and Hottovy (from no. 16 to no. 46) fell in this year's countdown, the second-largest drop.

31.) Number of spots George Kottaras fell in this year's countdown (from no. 8 to no. 39), the largest drop.

32.) Number of spots Dustin Richardson jumped in this year's countdown (from no. 43 to no. 11), the biggest leap.

35.) Number of newcomers in 2006, led by Craig Hansen at no. 3.

37.) Number of players, through 2007, who made just one appearance in the rankings.

46.) Number of wins recorded in the majors by pitchers who have appeared on the countdown, led by Sanchez (12).

51.) Number of pitchers who have appeared in the countdown.

55.) Number of position players who have appeared in the countdown.


Diehard managing editor Jerry Beach can be reached at diehardmag@yahoo.com. To receive a free issue of Diehard, call 888-501-5752.

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