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Rank Interest

Baseball America's annual top-ten list of Giants prospects came out today, and you can check it out here. The list is free, but the scouting reports are for subscribers only. When you subscribe you don't just get great minor-league coverage, you get invited to wild parties at the Baseball America mansion. It's where Wade Boggs met Margo Adams.

There is a chat session about the Giants with John Manuel as well, with some excellent questions.

Some quick notes:

  • The enthusiasm for Fred Lewis is encouraging. Baseball America doesn't seem to be too worried about his age and relatively low level of competition. As a novice prospect watcher, I see "24, high-A, 120+ strikeouts", and become suspicious. Manuel has enough confidence in Lewis to rank him as the top hitter in the system. I'll leave it to you to decide who has more credibiity. Hint: Not me.
  • I love the nod to Ishikawa. There might be some bias, as I've seen Ishikawa play more than any other Giants prospect, but he really does look like a player whose main problem is youth and inexperience.
  • I was real surprised by David Aardsma's precipitous drop in the rankings. He had a tough road to hoe after being plopped in Pacific Coast League less than a year after college, and did just fine. However, and this has to be pointed out, Baseball America is concerned more with ceiling than performance. If Aardsma's arm is screaming "possible setup man", there is no way to justify a higher ranking. Here's hoping he approaches the closer the Giants thought they were drafting.
  • In the chat, it read like Manuel just loves Marcus Sanders:
    He's got some plate discipline, he's got some savvy, athletic ability the Giants haven't seen in years in a middle infielder...
    That he didn't make the top ten might mean the Giants are in better shape than I would have given them credit for.
  • Private to Chris B. from Utah: Yes. Yes, we are.
The release of the Baseball America prospect list and subsequent chat has been the Puxatan... Puxetawn... Puxa.... groundhog of the offseason. The Giants top ten, the release of books from Baseball Prospectus, Baseball America, and John Sickels, and then spring training. It's the beginning of the end of the always-miserable offseason, and right around the time I drop the Warriors like a used Kleenex.