Ryan McMahon, 3B, Colorado Rockies
2014 Stats: .289/.385/.697, 4 2B, 9 HR, 22 RBI, 13 BB, 24 K (22 games)
McMahon has been one of the more impressive hitters through the season’s first month, as the 19-year-old third baseman’s nine home runs has him tied with Joey Gallo for the minor league lead. The kid is a future big leaguer. Last Friday, McMahon was 2-for-5 with his ninth dinger (a grand slam) and six RBI.
Drew Ward, 3B, Washington Nationals
2014 Stats: .311/.382/.508, 4 2B, 2 HR, 21 RBI, 6 BB, 14 K (14 games)
A third-round draft pick last June, Ward received an aggressive assignment to Low-A Hagerstown this season after he posted a .780 OPS last summer during his pro debut in the Gulf Coast League. The 19-year-old third baseman has been an RBI machine at the more advanced level, driving in 21 runs through Hagerstown’s first 14 games. In his last 10 games, Ward is batting .333/.388/.533 with five extra-base hits and 18 RBI; he owns a 1.149 OPS with runners in scoring position.
Wendell Rijo, 2B, Boston Red Sox
2014 Stats: .333/.468/.508, 5 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 15 BB, 16 K (19 games)
Rijo, 18, was signed out of the Dominican Republic for $575,000 in July 2012 and impressed last season in his professional debut, batting .277/.367/.375 with 16 doubles, 15 stolen bases and a 32-to-22 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 184 at-bats between the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League and short-season Lowell. He has a ways to go before reaching the major leagues, but, as you might have already inferred from his hot start, Rijo is definitely one of the more intriguing lower-level, up-the-middle prospects to keep an eye on this season.
Aaron Judge, OF, New York Yankees
2014 Stats: .354/.463/.481, 2 2B, 2 HR, 11 RBI, 16 BB, 18 K (23 games)
The 6’7”, 230-pound Judge failed to collect an extra-base hit through his first 12 games for Low-A Charleston. However, the 22-year-old certainly has made up for the slow start; he’s batting .429 (15-for-35) with 12 runs scored, five extra-base hits (including both home runs) and six RBI in his last 10 contests.
Clint Coulter, C, Milwaukee Brewers
2014 Stats: .333/.452/.623, 6 2B, 4 HR, 17 RBI, 2 SB, 13 BB, 10 K (20 games)
Selected by the Brewers with the No. 27 overall pick in the 2012 draft, Coulter, 20, had an impressive professional debut after signing but then struggled mightily last year and battled injuries in what was supposed to be his full-season debut. In 70 games across three levels, Coulter batted .244/.314/.400 with 14 doubles, seven home runs and a 60-to-20 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He's quickly making up for the lost time this year, however, with a 1.076 OPS, 11 extra-base hits and 10-to-13 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 20 games at Low-A Wisconsin.
Clint Frazier, OF, Cleveland Indians
2014 Stats: .200/.327/.267, 2B, 3B, 3 RBI, 8 BB, 13 K (12 games)
Frazier, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2013 draft, made his highly anticipated season debut last week for Low-A Lake County, collecting seven hits in his first seven games. However, the 19-year-old has been scuffling as of late, with a .105 batting average (2-for-19) in his last five contests. That being said, Frazier’s 13-to-8 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 55 plate appearances this season is a positive sign after posting a 61-to-17 ratio last summer in 196 Arizona League plate appearances.
Stryker Trahan, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks
2014 Stats: .202/.255/.360, 6 2B, 2 HR, 16 RBI, 2 SB, 7 BB, 30 K (23 games)
Trahan was officially moved from catcher to the outfield this spring to accelerate his offensive development and overall timeline. The 20-year-old got off to a solid start but is batting just .189 with 14 strikeouts in his last six games.
Christian Arroyo, SS, San Francisco Giants
2014 Stats: .198/.231/.256, 3 2B, 3B, 7 RBI, 4 BB, 14 K (23 games)
The No. 25 overall pick in the 2013 draft, Arroyo quickly surpassed expectations last summer in his professional debut, batting .326/.388/.511 with 25 extra-base hits in 45 games for the Giants affiliate in the Rookie-level Arizona League. The 18-year-old is yet to find his groove at the plate this season at Low-A Augusta, but that’s understandable as the second-youngest player at a full-season level.