OF/IF Vidal Brujan (S/R, 5’10 180, 24 in 2022)
2021 statistics with Triple-A Durham: 441 PA, .262/.345/.440, 44/52 SB, 12 HR, 44 XBH, 11.1 BB%, 15.4 K%
2021 statistics with Tampa Bay: 26 PA, .077/.077/.077, 1/1 SB, 0.0 BB%, 30.8 K%
Brujan has always had the athleticism to play multiple positions, but it took until 2021 for the Rays to deploy him in that manner, giving him a significant amount of time at all three outfield positions and three positions in the infield. He showed improved power in 2021, and he was as effective on the basepaths as ever. His average dropped quite a bit, but he was still very hard to strike out.
Sorry for being a day late with this poll. I don’t think there have been any surprises in the top three, but the voting could probably start going any number of ways here.
I’ll take up to two testers for this one.
2022 Community prospect list
|1||RHP Shane Baz||24||28||85.7%||6|
|2||OF Josh Lowe||16||34||47.1%||8|
|3||IF/OF Vidal Brujan||23||36||63.9%||3|
|4||RHP Taj Bradley||19||27||70.4%||26|
|5||IF Curtis Mead||20||28||71.4%||40|
RHP Taj Bradley (6’2 190, 21 in 2022)
2021 statistics with Low-A Charleston and High-A Bowling Green: 103 1⁄3 IP, 1.83 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 7.8 BB%, 31.0 K%
During the lost season, there were stories about Bradley’s improving stuff and breakout potential. He proved to be one of the best pitchers in the minors, living up to the hype. He led the minors in ERA among pitchers with 100-plus innings. He did it with a plus fastball and slider, an improving changeup, and pretty good control. Not bad for a fifth-round pick.
2B Xavier Edwards (S/R, 5’10 175, 22 in 2022)
2021 statistics with Double-A Montgomery: 337 PA, .302/.377/.368, 19-for-30 SB, 13 2B, 16 XBH, 10.7 BB%, 12.5 K%
After missing the first month of the season on the injured list, Edwards was as advertised in his first season playing games in the organization. He hit a ton of singles, demonstrated a good plate approach, and showed enough speed to steal bases. There was almost no power to speak of, although he did hit a homer in the postseason. He didn’t play an inning at shortstop but did play a fair amount of games at third base.
SS Greg Jones (S/R, 6’2 175, 24 in 2022)
2021 statistics with High-A Bowling Green and Double-A Montgomery: 317 PA, .270/.366/.482, 14 HR, 26 XBH, 34/36 SB, 10.4 BB%, 30.3 K%
Jones has some of the best tools in the organization, and he showed them when he was healthy in 2021. He stole a base nearly every other game he played and was only caught twice. He also showed off impressive power potential for a middle-of-the-diamond player. However, the strikeouts will need to come down. Defensively, he has the athleticism and arm to play anywhere, but center field might be his best fit.
IF Curtis Mead (R/R, 6’2 171, 21 in 2022)
2021 statistics with Low-A Charleston, High-A Bowling Green, and Triple-A Durham: 458 PA, .321/.378/.533, 55 XBH, 15 HR, 11-for-15 SB, 7.4 BB%, 15.5 K%
Rather than risk losing him for nothing in the rule 5 draft, the Rays traded lefty Cristopher Sanchez to the Phillies for Mead in 2019. Among prospects with 400-plus plate appearances, he was 10th in average, and he led the minors in doubles. He has good power potential but doesn’t have to sell out for it — he makes consistent, hard contact and rarely strikes out. His future defensive home is a question, but his bat plays in a lot of places.
RHP Tommy Romero (6’2 225, 24 in 2022)
2021 statistics with Double-A Montgomery and Triple-A Durham: 110 1⁄3 IP, 2.61 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 7.1 BB%, 33.3 K%
Romero remained one of the best statistical pitchers in the minors in 2021. He was tied for 19th in strikeouts, and he maintained his impressive control. With a low-90s fastball and average changeup and breaking ball, he should get his chance in the majors soon. In the roster shuffling leading up to the rule 5 draft deadline, the Rays opted to add him to the 40-man roster.