Saturday, December 15, 2012

Down on the Farm: DrB's 2013 Giants Top 50 Prospects

OK, here's the final DrB's 2013 Giants Top 50 Prospects list.  I'm sure if I waited another day or another week or another month, I would still be tinkering with it and moving names up and down.  Gotta wrap it up sometime.  I appreciate the feedback from the preliminary list and incorporated many of the suggestions.  Please don't get too hung up on the exact order.  As always, the main purpose of the exercise is to become better acquainted with the Giants prospects who might be playing for the San Francisco Giants in the near or distant future.  On with the list!

1.  Gary Brown, OF.
2.  Joe Panik, SS.
3.  Kyle Crick, RHP.
4.  Chris Stratton, RHP.
5.  Clayton Blackburn, RHP.
6.  Adalberto Mejia, LHP.
7.  Martin Agosta, RHP.
8.  Gustavo Cabrera, OF.
9.  Heath Hembree, RHP.
10. Mike Kickham, LHP.
11. Francisco Peguero, OF.
12. Ricky Oropesa, 1B.
13. Andrew Susac, C.
14. Ehire Adrianza, SS.
15. Adam Duvall, 3B.
16. Mac Williamson, OF.
17. Edwin Escobar, LHP.
18. Chuckie Jones, OF.
19. Shilo McCall, OF.
20. Tyler Hollick, OF.
21. Chris Heston, RHP.
22. Cody Hall, RHP.
23. Shawn Payne, OF.
24. Jake Dunning, RHP.
25. Brett Bochy, RHP.
26. Josh Osich, LHP.
27.  Bryce Bandilla, LHP.
28.  Steven Okert, LHP.
29.  Ian Gardeck, RHP.
30.  Steven Johnson, RHP.
31.  Mason McVay, LHP.
32.  Eduardo Encinosa, RHP.
33.  Roger Kieschnick, OF.
34.  Chris Dominguez, OF.
35.  Nick Noonan, IF.
36.  Juan Perez, OF.
37.  Chris Gloor, LHP.
38.  Jacob Dunnington, RHP.
39.  Kendry Flores, RHP.
40.  Eric Surkamp, LHP.
41.  Austin Fleet, RHP.
42.  Conor Gillaspie, 3B.
43.  Carter Jurica, 2B.
44. Dan Burkhart, C.
45.  Edward Concepcion, RHP.
46.  Jesus Galindo, OF.
47.  Chris Marlowe, RHP.
48.  Steven Neff, LHP.
49.  Derek Law, RHP.
50.  Kentrell Hill, OF.

Honorable Mention:  Joseph Rapp 3B/1B, Joe Biagini RHP, Joan Gregorio RHP, Travious Relaford SS, John Polonius SS, Jonathan Jones 1B, Randy Ortiz OF, Andrew Leenhouts LHP, Emmanuel DeJesus LHP, Gabriel Cornier C, Alberto Robles 2B, Jose Valdez RHP, Fabio Castillo RHP, Scott Shuman RHP, Johnny Monell C, Jarrett Parker OF, Rafael Rodriguez OF, Alex Burg UT, Ryan Cavan 2B, Justin Fitzgerald RHP, Demondre Arnold RHP, Jackson Williams C, Ryan Lollis OF, Brett Krill OF, Mitch Delfino 3B.

We will post profiles of each of these prospects, with the top prospects being more detailed than the ones near the bottom and in the HM list.  We will also post a list and some brief profiles, according to what we know about them, of some of the DSL players who we refer to as Dominican Dandies.

Joe Ritzo has a Q/A with Giants Director of Player Development, Fred Stanley, over at Check it out for a lot of good, interesting information.  One thing that stuck out was that apparently Brian Sabean has the final say on player assignments in the minor leagues, something I was not aware of and certainly cuts against those who day he is disengaged from the player development process.


  1. I like the list. The Giants may not have many high profile prospects, mostly because all of them are now productive big league regulars, but they definitely have some cool sleeper prospects. It's a very interesting system to watch and follow.

  2. Looks good. Mac Williamson drops, Adam Duvall rises. Personally I wouldn't have dropped Mac but I'm starting to believe some in Duvall, if he can get his throw to 1st straightened out. I think Cody Hall might make a big move this year. The two injury risk lefties Osich and Bandilla, followed by that run of Okert, Gardeck, Johnson, McVay and Encinosa makes a lot of sense. The fact Steven Johnson is the 30th guy, even if you don't take the exact ranking seriously, is proof the Giants are deep. I took a gander at some old MCC threads from 07-09 including some you're a part of DrB. Not to look at peoples predictions, but to look at the overall talent level we were dealing with. Sure, you have to take some of it with a grain of salt, the new hope of shiny prospects always pulls a bit, but the overall talent in the system is changed a fair amount, for the better. I think you have to give a lot of credit to Barr on this, because he's given them a backbone of solid if not the highest upside players as a core to build on. Good stuff.

    To play devil's advocate for a sec, that quote on Sabean was about Joe Panik. I'm sure Sabean will pay attention to the guys the team shelled out 300K-1MM-and on up pretty close. I can't stand the arguments that Sabean was somehow lucky with Timmy-Maddy-Posey, those were his choices, and his alone. But he is a delegate first guy, and his greybeards take the marching orders and run with it.

    1. Just went back and read the Fred Stanley Q/A. It was actually Susac he referred to as per Brian Sabean making the final decision about assignment.

    2. Yep, Susac to Richmond or not, talk about it with Tidrow. Its Panik to 2B or not, talk about it with Bochy. Sabean emphasizes collaboration. But the choices at the end are his responsibility. It's just unfair to cherry pick em. Either he takes the heat on the bonehead moves and gets all the credit for things that turn out well, or some degree of knowledge of exactly how involved he is should be referenced. One of the first bonehead moves was signing Alfonso without a physical. Well, turns out that was mostly Coletti. But its on Sabean. Arguably the best move of his stewardship, John Barr is in on Posey early, but he send Jack Hiatt to evaluate him. He gets all the credit in the world for that draft pick.

      Speaking of draft picks, I've come to peace with the 2012 draft and the lack of any HS players drafted, but it is interesting that in his Tolbert interview he a) states selfishly he would want some college arms to plug into the system to replenish and b) states that high school players are hard to draft because they are all over the place. Sometimes it pays to listen to Brian Sabean, he usually sticks close to the plan he lays out. Bummed there was no presser after Pagan/Scutaro but he was sick. Hope he is doing better, a little worried about his health actually.

    3. Shank, what happened to your Lunatic Fringe card?

    4. Shark - gathering dust! Bobby Evans is the man. Cain, Bumgarner, Vogelsong and Timmy. All looking like serious wins. Pablo hedged. Looking forward to what they do with Posey.

    5. In fairness, Shankbone, Stanley talked about both Sabes and Tidrow like they make these decisions together. Yes, it is unfair to cherry pick!

    6. Shankbone,

      Just went back and re-read the Fred Stanley Q/A one more time. Re. Panik, he said Bochy and Sabean would ultimately decide whether he stays at SS or not. Re. Susac, he first said Sabes would make the decision re. whether he goes to Richmond or repeats SJ, then said later in the same answer that Sabes and Tidrow would decide it.

      At any rate, my ORIGINAL point about Sabes being more involved in minor league assignments than I had imagined still stands.

      BTW, I can't believe we are actually debating this!

    7. Yeah, I don't know what we're even debating here. Sorry bout any confusion my rambling has caused. Tidrow and Sabean are joined at the hip. I laugh at the way it gets split up: In Tidrow We Trust is commonly thrown around, all credit for any pitcher whispering. But the lack of a hitting prospect since Billy Mueller is left at Sabean's doorstep. I don't think most fans even realize that Tidrow was running all those drafts for us. I've always thought that Sabean is much more involved in all the process, its just a collaborative and low-profile process. My point was pretty simple, I should have cut it down: with all high level prospects, Sabean will be involved for sure. Deciding when to shuffle Panik to 2B, where to put Susac. Any place where the Giants have put big money its going to be brought to his attention for sure.

    8. MY point is that Susac was a second rounder, so at least Sabean's involvement in player development goes beyond the first round. Also, in Panik's case it was Bochy and Sabean, which seems pretty reasonable when you are talking about a position change, but in Susac's case it is a relatively low level decision of which affiliate to assign him to in which Sabes name gets mentioned twice and Tidrow's once.

      Anyway, in the past, Sabean has been portrayed as being almost totally disengaged from the players development process which these comments by Fred Stanley would seem to contradict.

      That's all!

  3. What happened with Natanael Javier? Another 16 year old "signed" at same time as Gustavo. I cant find anyhting in a quic web search. Nor is he on the list. But maybe I'm missing something.

    1. There is usually little or no information on these kids once you get below 7 figures on the bonus. I would expect Javier to surface in the DSL boxscores and we'll see how he performs. That's why he's not on the list.

      It's also possible something fell through with the signing. There usually are not announcements when that happens. They just disappear.

      We'll see.

    2. Lots of references to the signing on a quick google search, so I think there is a high probability he's a Giant. Again, you usually just don't hear much about these signees between the signing and when they start playing.

    3. Javier signed for sure. 500K, he's higher rated by Mayo/MLB then by BA.

      MLB release:

      DPL pic of him:

    4. Sounds like scouts are nearly as high on this kid as they are Cabrera. Both guys sound like they could be drawing some big interest if they play well for the organization next year. Reading the early reports on them makes me excited to see what we've got in these 2. Javier's reports say he's got the build and ability to be a long-term 3B, and someone who projects as a solid hitter for both average and power. While Cabrera has more all-around tools, reports are much higher on Javier's bat (from what I've read anyway). Interesting.


  4. Have the Giants found Gregor Blanco II?

    Javier Herrera went 1-4 and is hitting .407

    Javier Herrera is a recent signee (last week) to a minor league contract. He is a 27-year old outfielder who was a former A's player who has been injured. He recently played in the independent leagues. Currently, Javier is playing in the Venezuelan Winter League where he is hitting .407 in 59 at-bats. He has 7 home runs , 18 RBI and an OPS of 1.234.

    1. Nice! He was pretty highly rated a few years ago. This is most likely the 6 yr minors guy John Shea was hinting at. Got derailed by injuries with the A's.

    2. Looking into him some more, this is pretty sneaky.
      Oakland A's 2006 BA - Best Defensive Outfielder – Javier Herrera
      Oakland A's 2006 BA - Best Outfield Arm – Javier Herrera
      Pre-2005: Rated #68 Prospect overall MLB (BA)
      Pre-2006: Rated #74 Prospect overall MLB (BA)

      I love the highly rated aspect of this reclamation project. I think that's one thing the Giants really pay attention to. There has to be a base foundation of skills to succeed.

    3. Sometimes us old folks, who been 'round the block a few times can get our act together. Maybe Javier has some miles left (only 27) and some skills which he can put into play. Hey even one nugget a year for the MLB roster and you really keep your payroll under budget. Blanco and Arias certainly earned their keep last year.

    4. If he is the size he is listed, 5'11", 225 lbs, he ain't the next Gregor Blanco or Joaquin Arias, but yeah, it will be interesting to see if Herrera has anything left.

    5. I would caution anointing him Blanco II. Blanco when we got him actually had played a lot of MLB ball and been successful getting on base regularly. For some unknown reason, he just was never given more of a chance in the majors to play more regularly. Not that he's a sure starter, but given how high his OBP was and OPS was, and general good personality, I don't know why he was never given any chance.

      Herrera however has never been in the majors. Furthermore, though he is relatively young at 27 YO, he has already missed two full seasons already, 2006 and 2011, and has never played a full season before, he hasn't even reached 100 games in any season yet. And he hasn't played at AAA before, except for a cup of coffee he got very early in his career, when he was jumped from A-ball to AAA for about a week. That was the only season he had over 400 PA. After his first missed season, he did not hit well at all at any of the levels he played at. He has hit well in the Independent Leagues lately, but still strikes out way too much, given the competition.

      He obviously had some early skills that earned him high regard. His TJS and hamstring issues have hampered him (he was also caught using PED), and apparently he has a rep for being lackadaisical (when rehabbing from TJS) and not seeming to care when on the field. 2008 was the last season he appeared in BA's Top 30 ranking, and they still noted his Five Tool status. Hopefully he realizes now what he needs to do in order to be successful in baseball, this is probably his last chance to show something.

  5. Oh and looking forward to the profiles DrB! Always interesting to see why some people drop down in the list, but what they might still have to offer, and what their path is to climbing back up the ladder: Surkamp, Galindo, Jones. What the scouting community thinks of the unknowns: McCall, Agosta, Cabrera. And why some people have shot up the list - I can't really spot anyone beside Mejia that fits that description. So thanks for the coming profiles - always a good read!

    1. Just to whet your appetite, Gary Brown will be the first one up. I know a lot of analysts have him dropping below some of the young pitchers, but I discovered something in my research which I think will cast Brown's performance with Richmond in a much more positive light. Stay tuned!

  6. You obviously don't have a clue on your Top 50 list.