Stock Up, Stock Down for Atlanta Braves' Top 10 Prospects
The Atlanta Braves (18-19) will see more youth on the field as the season progresses.
Right-hander Mike Foltynewicz has graduated off this list and made three starts for the Braves (2-0, 4.24 ERA). Meanwhile, fellow righty Williams Perez will make his first start for the Braves on Wednesday after a brief stint in the bullpen, according to MLB.com's Mark Bowman.
Todd Cunningham, Pedro Ciriaco and Adonis Garcia have all been called up after injuries to some of the Braves regulars as well.
While the last four were not part of the top-10 list, they demonstrate that youth will be a major theme for the Braves moving forward.
With that said, here's a current stock report on the Braves' top 10 prospects.
10. Jason Hursh
With Foltynewicz moving to the majors, pitcher Jason Hursh cracks the top 10.
The Braves' 2013 first-round pick has largely been a forgotten man with all of the offseason additions to the farm system.
It has been a struggle for Hursh in 2015 as well. The right-hander is 1-3 with a 7.02 ERA for Double-A Mississippi.
The good news is that Hursh is coming off his best start of the season on Saturday. He threw six shutout innings and allowed just three hits and one walk while striking out four.
Hursh will need many more of those starts moving forward.
2015 Season Stats: 1-3, 7.02 ERA, 2.01 WHIP, 33.1 IP
9. Manny Banuelos
With Eric Stults out of the rotation, it seemed Manny Banuelos would be a strong candidate to fill that slot. However, the Braves decided to give the nod to Perez and let Banuelos continue to develop in the minors.
The left-hander has pitched well in recent outings for Triple-A Gwinnett after a slow start.
While he wasn't efficient, he was effective in allowing just one earned run and four hits in five innings of work this past week. He did walk three men to go with his four strikeouts.
It will be interesting to see if/when the team calls up Banuelos and how they utilize him, as they want to limit his innings after coming off Tommy John surgery.
2015 Season Stats: 2-0, 2.89 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 37.1 IP
8. Tyrell Jenkins
Shelby Miller has received loads of attention this week after his near no-hitter and dominant start for the Braves.
While Miller has an influence on the outlook of the Jason Heyward trade, Tyrell Jenkins will also be tied to that swap.
Jenkins has the talent to be an effective pitcher, but he has struggled to stay healthy to this point of his career.
So far so good on that front for the talented right-hander in 2015.
Jenkins is arguably coming off his best week of the season for Double-A Mississippi. The 22-year-old pitched 14 innings and allowed just one earned run. He gave up just three hits and no earned runs in his latest outing.
2015 Season Stats: 2-2, 3.00 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 45 IP
7. Ricardo Sanchez
The Braves acquired left-handed pitcher Ricardo Sanchez from the Los Angeles Angels in the offseason to further stock their pitching depth in the minors.
The 18-year-old is obviously years away from contributing at the MLB level. He also didn't get off to a good start with an 0-3 record and 8.79 ERA in four April starts.
Sanchez hasn't pitched in May and is currently on the disabled list.
We will continue to monitor his progress.
2015 Season Stats: 0-3, 8.79 ERA, 1.60 WHIP, 14.1 IP
6. Braxton Davidson
Outfielder Braxton Davidson is another young prospect who is years away from reaching the majors. He also represents the first positional player on this list.
The Braves' 2014 first-round pick has had his growing pains, but he's also shown signs of promise. He notched six hits (none of the extra-base variety), two RBI and three runs in 25 at-bats last week.
The Braves will want to see more run production from the 18-year-old as he continues to develop.
2015 Season Stats: .231/.371/.361, 3 HR, 8 RBI
5. Rio Ruiz
Rio Ruiz's 2015 season has taken a downward turn after a hot start.
This was another rough week for Ruiz as he managed just one double and an RBI in 17 at-bats. The 20-year-old has struggled to adjust during his time at Double-A Mississippi.
The Braves have high hopes for the left-handed hitter as their third baseman of the future. This slump Ruiz is in will be a good test for him as he continues his professional career.
2015 Season Stats: .173/.263/.221, 0 HR, 10 RBI
4. Ozhaino Albies
Ozhaino Albies is another talented and exciting infield prospect in the Braves organization.
The 18-year-old shortstop has had another solid season so far for Single-A Rome. He put together a nice week with six hits (one double), three runs, two RBI and four stolen bases. He also struck out just once.
Albies has similar tools to Jose Peraza, another top prospect who Braves fans are more familiar with. Albies could follow a similar path as Peraza.
2015 Season Stats: .307/.366/.393, 0 HR, 15 RBI, 15 stolen bases
3. Lucas Sims
Left-handed pitcher Lucas Sims faces less pressure in the organization after the Braves acquired loads of farm-system pitching this offseason.
The former first-round pick shows flashes of brilliance, but often struggles with consistency. The 21-year-old needs to start showing some more steadiness as his career develops.
Sims is coming off some nice starts, with his latest being a one-run (unearned), seven-hit, six-strikeout performance over seven innings.
Those are the type of outings that leave Sims near the top of the organizational rankings.
2015 Season Stats: 2-3, 5.20 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 27.2 IP
2. Matt Wisler
Like Banuelos, it was somewhat surprising that the Braves didn't select Matt Wisler to be inserted into the rotation.
The Braves acquired Wisler a day before the season began from the San Diego Padres in the Craig Kimbrel and Melvin Upton trade.
While Wisler got off to a rough start, he has been effective as of late. In his last start, the right-hander allowed one earned run and six hits while striking out five in 5.2 innings of work.
I'd expect Wisler to get a chance in the rotation in the near future if Stults remains in the bullpen.
2015 Season Stats: 2-3, 4.15 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 39 IP
1. Jose Peraza
Second baseman Jose Peraza has followed the opposite path of fellow top prospect Rio Ruiz. After a sluggish spring training and slow start in the minors, Peraza has started to catch fire.
The 21-year-old is currently on a six-game hitting streak and compiled six hits in 15 at-bats last week. He also added two steals, two RBI and a triple.
Peraza is currently nursing a minor injury and should return to the lineup soon.
The Braves are remaining patient with Peraza, but expect to see him in the majors at some point this season.
2015 Season Stats: .311/.352/.370, 0 HR, 12 RBI, 14 stolen bases
All stats via MiLB.com unless otherwise noted.