TigsTown 2011 Midseason Top 50: 20-11

We move closer and closer to releasing the top ten prospects in the organization. Inside, take a look at which prospects fall just outside of the top ten, ranking 11 through 20.

20. Adam Wilk – Left-handed Pitcher

Wilk has gotten his first big league opportunity this summer and likely won't qualify for this list in the off-season. The soft-tossing left-hander has fit in well in a relief role and could have a future as a big league bullpen arm or spot starter. His command is among the best in the system and makes up for much of what his raw stuff lacks.

19. Jose Ortega – Right-handed Pitcher

It took a while for Ortega to make his 2011 debut with Toledo after being added to the 40-man roster in the off-season, but once he made his debut, the stuff was still there. Mid-90s heat and a breaking ball that flashes as an above-average or better pitch give Ortega two pitches that could make him a big leaguer. His control is still lacking and his angle to the plate leaves him hittable, and ultimately cuts his ceiling short as more of a seventh inning arm.

18. Josue Carreno – Right-handed Pitcher

It has been a bumpy road for Carreno in West Michigan this year, but scouts still see the potential that has vaulted him into the Top 20 in these rankings. His velocity has remained in the low-90s consistently this year and he flashes both a curveball and change-up that are useable secondary pitches. As he continues to adjust to the growth of his body, Carreno's previously very good command should return and at that point, the results may begin to match the scouting reports.

17. Julio Rodriguez – Catcher

Rodriguez is consistently rated as the top defensive catcher in the Tigers minor league system, with plus receiving ability and a plus arm. He still requires some refinement, but the young backstop has the potential to be an elite level defender. Offensively, Rodriguez has pop in his bat and he can drive the ball, particularly to the pull side. His swing mechanics often leave him out front and sap some of his in-game power, but there is potential to contribute at the plate as well as behind it.

16. Gustavo Nunez – Shortstop

A repeat trip through the Florida State League saw Nunez post numbers resembling those he posted at West Michigan in 2009. As a speedy slap hitter with little power, Nunez's offensive value stems largely from his ability to hit for average. His glove is his real calling card though, as he is a premium level defender that earns 70-grades from scouts as a matter of routine. Even if the bat doesn't plan enough to hit at the top of the order, his glove could get him in a big league lineup on a regular basis.

15. Austin Wood – Left-handed Pitcher

Finally healthy after a minor shoulder injury killed most of his 2010 season, Wood has been nothing short of spectacular at Double-A this summer. His strike-throwing ability, quality stuff and outstanding makeup could have him in the big leagues before the end of this season, and he could top out as a high leverage guy capable of pitching to both lefties and righties.

14. Cale Iorg – Shortstop

A season that started with some hope that Iorg may have finally turned the corner at the plate has turned into a season very similar to the last two at Double-A. Iorg continues to struggle hitting for average, despite a mildly improved approach at the plate. His defense still earns rave reviews from scouts and coaches, and many still believe it could carry him to the big league level, though some are softening their stance on seeing Iorg as an MLB regular.

13. Duane Below – Left-handed Pitcher

A local Michigan product, Below has made a steady ascent through the minor league system and up the TigsTown.com rankings. He continues to refine his command at the Triple-A level, but Below has been sitting in the 89-92 range with his fastball while also showing a very good curveball. He has fifth starter ceiling and if the command doesn't come along enough to stick as a starter, he could fit nicely as a lefty specialist in the bullpen.

12. Avisail Garcia – Outfielder

Garcia is one of the toolsiest players in the entire system, showing several tools that rate as potential above-average future assets. His defense and throwing arm are already above-average to plus tools, and he will show 55 or better raw power in batting practice. A raw approach still holds back his offensive development and could continue to hamper him going forward. Garcia has the potential to develop into a classic right-fielder, but the bat will have to leap forward to fulfill that projection.

11. Rob Brantly – Catcher

Last year's third round pick, Brantly has met and exceeded offensive expectations with a very good showing in the Midwest League in 2011. He has hit for average, gotten on base, and shown enough power that some scouts believe he could hit 15-18 home runs annually at his peak. Defensively, Brantly has the tools to work behind the plate, but his receiving is raw and he could take some time to develop behind the dish. Of all the catchers in the system, Brantly arguably has the best chance to develop the bat and glove to be a starter.


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