One of my favorite sites to peruse is John Sickels and his blog Minor League Ball, obviously a minor league site the users there create some of the most opinionated and informative posts around. They also do community prospect lists and with some down time coming up for the Rays, and us never really addressing the idea, I figured why not do one on here?
The process is simple, everyday I'll post a diary with four or five voting options and as a community we'll vote on the prospect who deserves that ranking with the list extending towards 30. For the first 15-20 it's going to be pretty universal in terms of the choices, but after that it'll be interesting to see who gets nominated for voting, which as the nature of the project encompasses, will be decided by you guys, the users, via comments, emails, whatever you want, I'm simply going to keep track of the running list and post the daily item.
Why did I decide to embrace this all of the sudden? Well again we're in the last week of the season and therefore as a staff our real work is beginning. You guys are intelligient and resourceful and we offer opinions with that in mind it doesn't take much to realize that Brian Stokes is a bad pitcher or Carlos Pena is having a fantatsic season, but this off-season -- and I'm sure I'm not speaking for just myself even though I am at this moment -- I want to raise my proverbial game on this blog. Complacency is always an issue and we've been blessed with great opportunities, but there's no reason that as a whole this off-season won't be better product wise than last year, which by most accounts was very successful.
I suppose you could call this project the first step of my dedication to the site, even if it's not all that much, I hope it at the least sets the table for a very, very prosperous off-season in what will likely become either a foundation or flunder for this organization. With that in mind, let's get to the actual project; the candidates for the first ranking slot are after the jump.
Age: 21.11 (year.months)
Projected 08 Level: MLB
Montgomery (381 ABs) - .307/.403/.528/.931 21 HRs 76 RBIs 51 BBs 81 Ks
Durham (104 ABs) - .269/.398/.490/.888 5 HRs 19 RBIs 22 BBs 29 Ks
One of the poster children of the new DRO Longoria evidently never heard of the sophomore slump or he simply doesn't believe in it. The proverbial number one prospect now that Delmon Young has went the way of Kanye West and graduated Longoria possesses a good bat, fair defense, and a self demanding personality that makes failure highly unlikely.
Projected 08 Level:AA
The other half of the first round poster children, Price has yet to partake in a Rays sanctioned game, but none the less his draft status and ace potential put him on the initial slew of candidates.
Projected 08 Level: AA/AAA
Vero Beach (21 GS)- 116.2 IP 86 H 8 HR 145 SO 39 BB 2.93 ERA
Montgomery (5 GS)- 23.1 IP 19 H 2 HR 30 SO 13 BB 4.24 ERA
McGee out dueled fellow top lefty prospect Clay Kershaw not once but twice down the pivotal stretch and alongside fellow top arms Christopher Mason and Wade Davis lead Montgomery to it's second consecutive Southern League title. His fastball is ethereal and perhaps for the pure potential alone he could make a case for the first or second slot in the organizational food chain.
Vote, comment, whatever else you feel like doing, perhaps nominate a few for tomorrow's two slot that will join the runners up from today. Tomorrow's post will probably be up around 4 p.m. for maximum voting potential.