- Buxton (CF)
- Jose Berrios (RHP)
- Max Kepler (OF-1B)
- Nick Gordon (SS)
- Tyler Jay (LHP)
- Jorge Polanco (SS-2B)
- Byung Ho Park (1B)
- Kohl Stewart (RHP)
- Stephen Gonsalves (LHP)
- Nick Burdi (RHP)
Buxton, who retained his rookie status for 2016 by two at-bats, was the obvious top choice; he's very likely to be BA's No. 1 overall prospect for the third straight winter when that list comes out in a few weeks. Nor are No. 2 or 3 -- Jose Berrios and Max Kepler -- startling selections. There are plenty of organizations for which either would be the headliner.
The list was compiled for BA by the Pioneer Press beat writer, Mike Berardino, A few comments on his rankings:
Gordon, who spent last year in low A, is above Polanco, who split 2015 between Double A and Triple A, this on the basis that Gordon is expected to stick at shortstop. I like both players, and I agree that Polanco is stretched as a shortstop. His problem right now, as for Berrios and Kepler, is the lack of obvious opportunity on the major league club.
Stewart, the No. 4 overall pick in 2013, the year the Cubs took Kris Bryant with the No. 3 pick, "slid" to No. 7 after seeing his strikeout rate decline in the Florida State League. Key sentence: "The Twins hope he'll start to miss more bats as he learns more about pitch sequencing."
Gonsalves, the Twins fourth-round pick in that draft, has essentially caught Stewart in the rankings. But Berardino figures Stewart will open 2016 in Double A while Gonsalves, who finished 2015 in high A Fort Myers, remains there for a few months.
Jay, college reliever, is likely to start in 2016, probably at Fort Myers. The Miracle figure to have some really interesting left-handed arms in the rotation this spring, with Gonsalves, Jay and Randy Rosario, who was added to the 40-man roster after a strong TJ-recovery season in Cedar Rapids. Of that trio, I assume Jay is both closest to the majors and has the highest ceiling but that Gonsalves is the most likely to be a major league starter.