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Premium Content Chicago White Sox Top-15 Prospects of 2010, No’s 1 – 5

February 11, 2010 BY ALEX EISENBERG No Comments Yet

White Sox Prospects, No’s 1 – 5

    1. Tyler Flowers | C | Age – 24 | Grade – B
    2. Jared Mitchell | OF | Age – 21 | Grade – B
    3. Dan Hudson | RHP | Age – 23 | Grade – B
    4. Jordan Danks | CF | Age – 23 | Grade – B-
    5. Brent Morel | 3b | Age – 23 | Grade – C+

For the full prospect listing, please click here

Key Links
› Prospect Primer (Grading Criteria Explained)
› Team Page Listings
› Index of 2010 Top Prospect Lists
› Index of Last Year’s Top Prospect Lists
White Sox Links
› White Sox Team Page
› White Sox Farm System Overview

ALSO SEEWhite Sox Top Prospects, No’s 6 – 15

Grades are based on a prospect’s projected value over the course of his career and how likely it is that prospect will fulfill his projected value. Various factors are accounted for including upside, red flags, actual performance, and closeness to the majors. See the 2010 Prospect Primer for more information as it relates to prospect grading and philosophy.

Hitters must have 100 or fewer Major League ABs to qualify for this list. Starting pitchers must have 50 or fewer Major League innings to qualify for this list. Relief pitchers must have 25 or fewer Major League innings to qualify for this list. Ages are listed as of May 1st, 2010. Levels are based on the highest level in which a prospect played in 2009. All grades are subject to change based on any new information I receive before the season starts.

If you need to reach me in any way, please contact me via e-mail or post a comment at the bottom of the page and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible. The first two prospects are available for everybody to read.

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1. Tyler Flowers | C | B – R | Age – 24
MLB | Drafted – Round 33, 2005 (Atlanta Braves)

Player Grades
Contact – 40 Now | 50 Future
Power – 55 | 60
Discipline – 55 | 60
Speed – 40 | 35
Defense – 45 | 50
Arm – 50 | 50
Instincts – 55 | 60
ETA – 2010
Final Grade – B

Body Type – Big and strong

Scouting Report

Tyler Flowers has improved in each of the past three years at three different levels. From Single-A Rome to Double-A Birmingham, Flowers’ OPS has gone from .866 to .922 to 1.000. Only after a promotion to Triple-A did Flowers see his numbers drop off.

The increase has coincided with improved power numbers and an improved BB% though he’s also seen his K% rise as well.

*Credit to jpafan44

Flowers is a big man with a ton of raw strength which is a big factor in his plus raw power. He complements his power with wonderful patience at the plate, which is helped by excellent pitch recognition. However, there are holes in Flowers’ swing and he struggles to catch up to good fastballs up in the zone and in on the hands. Flowers’ bat speed is more solid than great.

While Flowers is not going to hit for a high average, he’s going to get on base often and he’s going to hit for power. He will also be doing this at catcher, a premium defensive position where good bats are tough to find.

Flowers is actually a decent athlete though his size can make it difficult for him behind the plate. He communicates with his pitchers well and has improved the quickness of his release. His arm rates as average behind the plate as he threw out 29% of all base runners last year.

Best Case Outcome – Top-5 offensive catcher

More Likely Outcome – Above average offensive catcher

2. Jared Mitchell | OF | B – L | Age – 21
Single-A Kannapolis | Drafted – Round 1 (23), 2009

Player Grades
Contact – 40 Now | 55 Future
Power – 45 | 55/60
Discipline – 45 | 60
Speed – 65 | 65
Defense – 50 | 60
Arm – 45 | 45
Instincts – 50 | 60
ETA – 2012 or 2013
Final Grade – B

Get a pitch-by-pitch look at Jared Mitchell by clicking here

Body Type – Very athletic

Scouting Report

Mitchell is a dynamic talent that can make an impact in all facets of the game. Still a raw product, he’s not far removed from being a two-sport player at LSU and has only recently focused on baseball full time. Despite that fact, Mitchell seems to know the value of getting on base. He walked in over 20% of his PA’s at LSU and in just under 17% of his PA’s at Single-A Kannapolis.

It can be a double edged sword for Mitchell as he’s too patient at times, letting good pitches go by and getting into bad hitters counts. He’s working on achieving the appropriate balance between being aggressive and working the count.

Mitchell’s pitch recognition is a work in progress, but he made huge strides last year. He still struggles to pick up good breaking balls and will often swing over top of them, especially in two-strike counts. However, he’s learning to both lay off them and adjust to them in mid-flight. Partly because he sees a ton of pitches, Mitchell strikes out at a high rate. It’s his biggest red flag as a hitter and could put a cap on his future batting average.

Still, Mitchell offers a tantalizing combination of power, patience, and speed at the plate. The power is still in its development stage, but depending on the approach Mitchell adheres to going forward, it has a chance to be above average, perhaps plus down the line. Mitchell shows good plate coverage and uses the entire field to his advantage. He has some things to clean up mechanically in his swing, but his athleticism will make it easier for him to make those adjustments.

Mitchell played predominantly right field for LSU, but will play center field in Chicago’s farm system. He effortlessly gets to balls and his plus speed helps him make up for any poor reads he gets at the position. A below average arm may move Mitchell off center and into left field.

Lastly, it’s worth noting that Mitchell had a pretty significant lefty/righty split in college and it carried over into the Sally League. The sample size is small, but it is worth monitoring.

Best Case Outcome – All Star center fielder

More Likely Outcome – A little too soon to say as I’d like to get more data, but somewhere along the lines of an above average everyday outfielder with the worst case scenario being the left hand side of a platoon

Brief Rundown on Prospects 3 – 5

3. Dan Hudson | RHP | Grade – B – Prolific rise through the minors ended in the Majors in his first pro season. He does a lot of things well, but does nothing outstanding and projects to be a No. 3/4 starter at the MLB level though some people think he’d be better out of relief

4. Jordan Danks | CF | Grade – B- – Stagnated a bit at Double-A, but I like his patience, athleticism, and ability to play center…needs to cut down on the K’s

5. Brent Morel | 3b | Grade – C+ – Solid all around third base prospect, but I’d like to see him up his BB%

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UP NEXTChicago White Sox Top Prospects, No’s 6 – 15

Other References and Resources Used for This ArticleFirst Inning and Minor League Splits

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