Bryce Harper 4 Other Minor League Studs

John BotelhoCorrespondent IIAugust 14, 2011

Bryce Harper launched a 480-foot walk-off home run on Friday.
Bryce Harper launched a 480-foot walk-off home run on Friday.Jeff Gross/Getty Images

Bryce Harper has been in the spotlight since YouTube videos of his prodigious power exploits at Tropicana Field went viral.

He continued to wow and would up on the cover of Sports Illustrated at 16 years old before leaving high school a year early to pursue the college game. 

He was drafted first overall, and as an 18-year-old has already reached Double-A.

It seems the camera is already always on Harper, who seems to keep finding ways to surprise people. He did it again this week, blasting a 480-foot walk-off home run in a Harrisburg's 2-1 win over Myrtle Beach. 

Harper's ability to hit the long ball is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to how exciting he is to watch. The kid—and in baseball terms he is still very much a kid—can do it all on the baseball field. 

He throws in the mid-90s from the outfield, he can run with anyone, and he carries himself in a such way that says, "I'm about to do something amazing."

Harper is hardly the only exciting prospect in the minors, and a couple of them have already sipped cups of coffee in the big leagues.

Other exciting prospects include: 


Mike Trout

 At 19 years old, Trout is a year ahead of Harper in terms of development, but he has been so good since being drafted that the Angels couldn't leave him in the minors when they were hit with injuries. 

He's probably the best five-tool talent in the minors and looks like a future Gold Glove-caliber center fielder (or right fielder due to his arm strength) who can hit north of .300 with 60 or so extra-base hits and at least 30 steals. 


Julio Teheran

 Teheran is light years ahead of most pitchers his age. The 20-year-old has lit up the minors with his electric fastball and has been used as a spot starter for the Braves on more than one occasion this year. Few can match his power arsenal, and he has the ability to work in the upper 90s on the radar gun. 


Matt Moore

 Moore is the latest pitcher playing the wait-for-a-rotation-spot-to-open-up game in Tampa Bay, but Moore could wind up being the best pitcher the Rays have ever developed—and yes, that includes David Price, James Shields, and Jeremy Hellickson. 

The left-handed Moore piles up strikeouts and has led the minors in Ks for the last few years. He's struck out 180 already in just 133 innings this year, including an impressive 14.6 per nine innings in five Triple-A starts.


Jesus Montero

 It seems when the Yankees develop a prospect and hang onto him long enough for him to don pin stripes, he turns into a stud (see Jeter, Posada, Rivera, Pettitte or Cano), and Montero should follow suit. 

He's invoked a lot of Miguel Cabrera comparisons, and the Yankees have been unwilling to include him trades in recent years unless other teams were sending back premium talent (he was the prize the Mariners would've landed had Cliff Lee ended up in NY). 

His defensive game leaves something to be desired, but he has a future hitting in the middle of the Bombers order.