I am not an A's fan. Have nothing against them but I instead cheer for the Phillies. The past few seasons I’ve done top 10 prospect lists for the Phillies and decided I would do one for the entire league to better expand my horizon on the prospects in MLB so here we go. Oakland’s top prospects from a Phillies fan:
1) Chris Carter-1B
Coming into the season, he was rated as the best bat in the system and he proved why. He was second in the organization in average (.329) first in hits (179) second in HRs (28) first in RBI (115) first in OBP (.422) and first in SLG (.570). This was all between AA and AAA last season. The first baseman is a future mainstay at first.
2) Michael Taylor-OF
Led the entire Phillies organization in AVG (.320), OBP (.395), and SLG (.549) and was second in the organization in HRs (20) and third in the organization in RBI (84) also added in 18 SBs and has a cannon for an arm.
That was a season where he was coming off an '08 campaign that saw him hit a combined .346 average with 19 HRs and 88 RBI. He also had a 968 OPS. So, last year was no fluke. Taylor was going to be my No. 1 prospect for the Phillies until he was traded. He’s a 20-20-100 guy for years to come. Carter and Taylor are very similar, it should be fun to watch them both.
3) Anthony Capra-LHP
Combined 3.20 ERA between high A and AA. Led the organization in Ks (170) Whip (1.14) and AVG (.206). Capra was 6-9 and should start out in AA, which will be a real test for him, but right now in my mind he’s the best pitching prospect in the system. Former fourth rounder in '08.
4) Grant Desme-CF
Had a breakout year in the A's system displaying power like never before. Between single A and AA he smashed 31 HRs for the A's while having a combined BA of .288. That was impressive but his Fall League stats showed he never slowed down as he hit an additional 11 HRs while hitting .315 in the fall. Oh, I might have forgotten to mention that he swiped 40 (best in the league) bases as well only getting caught five times.
5) Kenny Smalley-RHP
Led the organization in ERA (2.73) in Class A. Only let up six homers in 131.2 IP while having 119 Ks. Had more Ks than hits against (109). Like Rich Harden, he was a late find, drafted in the 24th round. His only drawback was that he put this production up in Low A, so next season will be a big test with him hitting Class A advanced.
6) Grant Green-SS
Green was the A's 2009 first round pick (13th overall) out of USC. He hit .316 for the Class A advanced Stockton Ports in limited action. Only 19 ABs but showed promise swiping one base and knocking in three RBI. I would start him out in Stockton again and see how he does with a few more at bats, but I wouldn’t be shocked if they move him to Midland if Weeks gets moved to AAA
7) Paul Smyth-RHP
Only reliever on my list of A's prospects, but he certainly deserves it. In 36.1 IP last season he didn’t give up a run. NOT ONE RUN. His ERA is spotless. He also had 44 Ks to the amazing four walks he gave up.
He also didn’t give up many hits (14) and held opponents to a .115 BA. He nailed down 11 saves in '09 between Low A Vancouver and Class A Kane County. He was named "Reliever of the Year" by MILB and rightfully so.
He should start the season in Stockton and be thrown into their closers role.
8) Adrian Cardenas-2B
Had a .299 average between AA and AAA. In AA he was hitting .326. Cardenas was third in the A's organization in hits with 152. Only had three HRs and eight SBs with six CS. Needs to improve his base stealing ability or else hell go from 2-hole hitter to seven-spot.
9) Michael Inoa (or Ynoa)-RHP
One of the biggest international signings ever in MLB history. Impossible to gauge at this point but will finally get solid time in the minors this year. Said "if its God's will I will be in the majors in two years," so he’s confident
10) Max Stassi-C
Rare HS kid taken by Beane was their fourth round pick in '09. Stassi hit .286 in a short season Vancouver, had an OBP of .340 and had 18 RBI in only 49 AB. Could be boom, could be bust. But having a good young hitting catcher is something every team covets