In November, Baseball America released their list of the top ten Tampa Bay Rays prospects with 17 year old phenom, Wander Franco making the jump to number one.
Since that time, Baseball America has made their list of the prospects with the best tools in the Rays system available, and to little surprise, Wander Franco possesses a couple of them.
- Best Hitter for Average: Wander Franco
- Best Power Hitter: Jesus Sanchez
- Best Strike-Zone Discipline: Wander Franco
- Fastest Baserunner: Vidal Brujan
- Best Athlete: Josh Lowe
- Best Fastball: Shane McClanahan
- Best Curveball: Matthew Liberatore
- Best Slider: Shane Baz
- Best Changeup: Brent Honeywell
- Best Control: Brendan McKay
- Best Defensive Catcher: Nick Ciuffo
- Best Defensive Infielder: Lucius Fox
- Best Infield Arm: Jermaine Palacios
- Best Defensive Outfielder: Josh Lowe
- Best Outfield Arm: Tanner Dodson
Along with being named the top prospect in the Rays system, Wander Franco was also named the best hitter for average as well as possessing the best strike-zone discipline.
During his first professional season, hitting .351/.418/.587 with 11 HR over 273 plate appearances. His strikeout and walk percentage were just as impressive, walking just shy of 10% of the time, with a 7.0 K%.
Meanwhile, Jesus Sanchez was named the best power hitter. The 21-year old outfielder rose to Double-A this past season and endured the worst struggles of his professional career thus far as he hit .214/.300/.327 with 1 HR over 110 PA. Prior to his promotion to Montgomery, Sanchez belted 10 HR over 378 plate appearances with the Charlotte Stone Crabs, registering a 79 wRC+. Since the season ended, Sanchez has been the main name linked to the Rays and JT Realmuto trade speculation.
On the pitching side of things, Brent Honeywell is on the comeback trail from Tommy John surgery, which he underwent last March. He recently started throwing off the mound again in December. Despite missing the entire season, Baseball America still ranks his change-up as the best in the Rays system.
The Tampa Bay Rays farm system is among the best in all of baseball. These are the best of the best.