Ranking All 30 MLB Farm Systems, Post 2016 MLB Draft

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistJune 15, 2016

Ranking All 30 MLB Farm Systems, Post 2016 MLB Draft

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    Seattle Mariners first-round pick Kyle Lewis
    Seattle Mariners first-round pick Kyle LewisJohn Froschauer/Associated Press

    The 2016 MLB draft is in the books, with 1,216 players selected over the course of the 40-round, three-day event.

    With no clear-cut No. 1 talent in this year's class, the first round was as unpredictable as any in recent memory and a number of highly regarded prospects wound up slipping below their expected draft position as a result.

    Now the focus for each team the next few weeks will be on signing its respective draft picks and getting their pro careers started.

    With that in mind, what follows is an updated look at where all 30 farm systems rank, assuming all of the top draft picks sign. Day 1 talents who slipped due to signability concerns were not included, as they will almost certainly be heading off to school.

    The following factors helped determine the rankings of players and teams:

    • Potential (Player): Potential trumps production a lot of the time, especially in the lower levels of the minors and with recent draft picks. Skill set and overall tools are often a better indication of what kind of player a guy will be in the future.
    • Talent (Player): As for guys in the higher levels of the minors who are close to breaking through at the big league level, production and current talent level are the determining factors, as they are viewed as a more complete product.
    • Overall Depth (Team): Having one or two elite prospects is great, but having a deep farm system from top to bottom is the way to build a sustainable contender. The overall depth and level of talent was the biggest factor in ranking each team.
    • High-End Talent (Team): That being said, there is a difference between a prospect who has a chance of making an impact at the big league level and a prospect who could be a star. Elite prospects served as a tiebreaker of sorts when two teams were close in the rankings.

    An updated list of the top 10 prospects for each team has been provided, as well a breakout down of each team's top position-player prospect, pitching prospect and one prospect on the rise.

    It should be noted that players on the big league roster who have not yet used up their rookie status (130 AB, 50 IP, 45 days on roster) were included as prospects.

30. Los Angeles Angels (Previous: 30)

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    C Matt Thaiss
    C Matt ThaissSteven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. C Matt Thaiss21imgDRAFT PICK2020
    2. OF Brandon Marsh18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    3. C Taylor Ward22imgA+2019
    4. CF Jahmai Jones18imgA2021
    5. RHP Victor Alcantara23imgAA2017
    6. SS Nolan Williams18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    7. LHP Nate Smith24imgAAA2016
    8. RHP Jaime Barria19imgA2020
    9. RHP Grayson Long22imgA2019
    10. RHP Joe Gatto21imgA2019

    State of the Farm System

    The Angels did well to add a polished college bat (Matt Thaiss) and a pair of high-ceiling preps (Brandon Marsh and Nonie Williams) at the top of this year's draft class. It's a step in the right direction for what was the thinnest farm system in baseball, but there's still a lot of work to do.

    Taylor Ward and Jahmai Jones both have significant upside but come with a certain level of uncertainty, while top pitching prospects Nate Smith, Grayson Long and Joe Gatto are probably middle-of-the-rotation arms at best.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: C/1B Matt Thaiss

    The Angels grabbed Matt Thaiss with the No. 16 pick this year after he hit .375/.473/.578 with 13 doubles and 10 home runs at the University of Virginia. His long-term defensive position is still up in the air, but he was one of the more polished bats in the class and should be able to help out in the majors soon. Second-round pick Brandon Marsh has huge offensive upside and a higher overall ceiling than Thaiss, but for now he's in the No. 2 spot.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Victor Alcantara

    It has not always translated to on-field success, but Victor Alcantara is still the best arm in the Angels' system. His fastball sits in the mid-90s with good sink and he can dial it up to 99 and he pairs it with a power slider in the low 90s. The development of his changeup will ultimately determine if he can remain a starter, but at the very least he has a chance to be a dominant late-inning reliever.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Jaime Barria

    Jaime Barria made his U.S. debut last year with a 4.02 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 69.2 innings over two rookie league stops, and so far the transition to full-season ball has been a smooth one. He doesn't have a ton of physical projection, but brings good pitchability and a plus changeup. If his curveball continues to develop and he can add a bit more velocity he has a chance to really develop into a front-line prospect.

29. Baltimore Orioles (Previous: 27)

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    RHP Hunter Harvey
    RHP Hunter HarveyTony Gutierrez/Associated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. RHP Hunter Harvey21imgA+2017
    2. C Chance Sisco20imgAA2017
    3. RHP Cody Sedlock21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    4. SS Ryan Mountcastle19imgA2019
    5. 3B Jomar Reyes19imgA+2019
    6. 1B Trey Mancini24imgAAA2017
    7. OF D.J. Stewart22imgA2018
    8. LHP Chris Lee23imgAA2017
    9. 1B Christian Walker25imgAAA2016
    10. RHP Matthias Dietz20imgDRAFT PICK2020

    State of the Farm System

    For the past several seasons, the top of the Baltimore Orioles farm system has been occupied by the talented but oft-injured duo of Hunter Harvey and Dylan Bundy. While Bundy is finally contributing at the MLB level and Harvey is close to returning to action, it's fair to say those two have not panned out as hoped.

    The team has added some quality talent in recent years with Ryan Mountcastle and D.J. Stewart selected in 2015 to bolster the position-player side of things and the trio of Cody Sedlock, Keegan Akin and Matthias Dietz headlining this year's class to add some much-needed pitching. There's still no slam dunk top prospect in the organization, though.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: C Chance Sisco

    A second-round pick in 2013, Chance Sisco is a career .323/.403/.426 hitter in parts of four minor league seasons but he's still a work in progress behind the plate. He's been pushed aggressively and has continued to hit in Double-A this year, so if he can even develop into an average defensive catcher he'll get a crack at the everyday job in the near future.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Hunter Harvey

    Hunter Harvey was brilliant in 2014, posting a 3.18 ERA, 1.129 WHIP and 106 strikeouts in 87.2 innings as a 19-year-old at the Single-A level. However, that breakout season was cut short by arm problems, and he hasn't pitched since. Still just 21 and finally nearing 100 percent, he still has tremendous upside, but expect the team to ease him back into action.

    Prospect on the Rise: OF Mike Yastrzemski

    The grandson of Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski, outfielder Mike Yastrzemski has moved slowly through the minors since being taken in the 14th round of the 2013 draft and entering the season he looked destined to peak as a fourth outfielder. He's off to a nice start here in 2016, though, hitting .273/.361/.489 with 16 doubles, 10 home runs and 41 RBI and earning a promotion to Triple-A. The 25-year-old may yet have a future as an everyday outfielder.

28. Detroit Tigers (Previous: 28)

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    OF Christin Stewart
    OF Christin StewartMark Cunningham/Getty Images

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. RHP Matt Manning18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    2. RHP Beau Burrows19imgA2020
    3. OF Christin Stewart22imgA+2018
    4. SS JaCoby Jones24imgAAA2017
    5. OF Derek Hill20imgA2019
    6. RHP Kyle Funkhouser22imgDRAFT PICK2019
    7. RHP Joe Jimenez21imgAA2017
    8. OF Jose Azocar20imgA2020
    9. LHP Tyler Alexander21imgA+2019 
    10. OF Steven Moya24imgAAA2016

    State of the Farm System

    Slowly but surely the Detroit Tigers have added to what was by far the worst farm system in baseball just a few years ago. Assuming they can sign Matt Manning, they picked up two potential front-line arms in this year's draft when Kyle Funkhouser slipped to the fourth round.

    The position player side of things is still shaky, but Christin Stewart looks like a potential impact bat and there is still a lot of upside in guys like Derek Hill and Jose Azocar. Joe Jimenez has also emerged as a long-term closer option, and they seemingly always need help in the bullpen.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Christin Stewart

    Christin Stewart hit .285/.372/.508 with 30 extra-base hits in 301 plate appearances after being taken No. 34 overall last June, and he's continued to move quickly by starting this season at the High-A level. The University of Tennessee alum has a .926 OPS with 13 doubles and 16 home runs so far this year, and a promotion to Double-A could be coming in the not-too-distant future as his bat continues to carry him up the organizational ladder.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Matt Manning

    The Tigers still need to sign Matt Manning, who was rumored to be seeking a $5 million bonus and is committed to play both baseball and basketball at Loyola Marymount. Provided they can get that done, the uber-projectable 6'6", 185-pound right-hander will immediately become the team's top overall prospect. His fastball already touches 97 and he pairs it with a plus curveball, so the front-line potential is there.

    Prospect on the Rise: OF Jose Azocar

    After two years in the Venezuelan Summer League, toolsy outfielder Jose Azocar finally made his U.S. debut last season with a .325/.350/.428 line in the Gulf Coast League. He was aggressive promoted to Single-A to kick off 2016 and he's responded with a .338/.367/.404 line, 11 extra-base hits and eight stolen bases. That performance has him quickly shooting up the organizational prospect list.

27. Kansas City Royals (Previous: 22)

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    3B Hunter Dozier
    3B Hunter DozierChristian Petersen/Getty Images

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. SS Raul A. Mondesi20imgAA2017
    2. RHP Kyle Zimmer24imgAA2016
    3. C Chase Vallot19imgA2019
    4. RHP Ashe Russell19imgA-2020
    5. RHP Miguel Almonte23imgAAA2016
    6. 3B Hunter Dozier24imgAAA2017
    7. LHP Foster Griffin20imgA+2019
    8. RHP Scott Blewett20imgA2019
    9. RHP A.J. Puckett21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    10. SS Marten Gasparini19imgA2019

     

    State of the Farm System

    Between injuries (Kyle Zimmer), suspensions (Raul A. Mondesi) and sub-par performances (Bubba Starling), the top-end of the Kansas City Royals farm system has been a major disappointment in recent years.

    However, they have an abundance of quality arms in the lower levels of their system and that coupled with the improved performance of bats like Chase Vallot and Hunter Dozier is enough to keep them from sliding any lower in these rankings for the time being.

     

    Top Position-Player Prospect: SS Raul A. Mondesi

    Raul A. Mondesi is currently serving a 50-game suspension after testing positive for a performance enhancer in May, but he's still the top prospect in a Royals' system lacking high-end talent. He's been promoted as aggressively as any prospect in baseball during his time in the organization, and at the very least should be a standout defender with good contact skills and plus speed.

     

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Kyle Zimmer

    Kyle Zimmer has struggled to stay on the mound but still claims top pitching prospect honors thanks to his vast potential. He can touch triple digits with his fastball and he might have the best curveball of any pitching prospect, but he's thrown just 74.1 innings total since the start of 2014 while dealing with myriad injuries. If durability continues to be an issue a move to the bullpen could make him an elite closer.

     

    Prospect on the Rise: 3B Hunter Dozier

    The Royals reached for Hunter Dozier at No. 8 overall in 2013 and used the money they saved to sign Sean Manaea at No. 34 overall, but that has put some unfair pressure on Dozier to live up to his draft position. After posting a .631 OPS in Double-A last season, things finally seem to be clicking as he's hitting .278/.339/.526 with 15 doubles and 14 home runs on the year.

26. Miami Marlins (Previous: 29)

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    LHP Braxton Garrett
    LHP Braxton GarrettLenny Ignelzi/Associated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. LHP Braxton Garrett18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    2. RHP Tyler Kolek20imgA2020
    3. 1B Josh Naylor18imgA2020
    4. OF Stone Garrett20imgA-2019
    5. LHP Jarlin Garcia23imgAA2016
    6. OF Austin Dean22imgAA2017
    7. OF Thomas Jones18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    8. OF Isael Soto19imgA2020
    9. RHP Kendry Flores24imgAAA2016
    10. RHP Chris Paddack20imgA2020

    State of the Farm System

    The Miami Marlins have traded and graduated a good deal of pitching talent in recent years, and that has left their farm system somewhat depleted. Throw in the fact that Tyler Kolek disappointed in his debut and was then lost to Tommy John surgery and the system was not in great shape heading into this year's draft.

    There's still a lack of overall depth, but the team picked up a terrific arm (Braxton Garrett), a high-ceiling outfielder (Thomas Jones) and did well to add quality college-level talent on both sides of the ball later in the draft. They're still in the bottom five for now, but this is a farm system that could be moving up by next update.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: 1B Josh Naylor

    The No. 12 overall pick in the 2015, Josh Naylor was one of the fastest-rising prospect in last year's draft thanks to his plus-plus raw power. He hit .327/.352/.418 in 25 games after signing last year and has held his own in his full-season debut this year. He has legitimate 30-homer upside and a good enough hit tool to realize that power potential.

    Top Pitching Prospect: LHP Braxton Garrett

    He may not have the same upside as fellow left-hander Jason Groome, but Braxton Garrett was the most polished prep arm in this year's draft and he has plenty of upside in his own right. His ceiling might be as a No. 2 starter, but his floor is as high as any high school pitcher in recent memory and he should be able to move quickly.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Chris Paddack

    Chris Paddack posted a 2.18 ERA in 45.1 rookie league innings last year after being signed away from his commitment to Texas A&M with an above-slot deal. He's continued to impress while making the jump to Single-A with a 1.47 ERA and an impressive 31 strikeouts in 18.1 innings, and there's plenty of projection left in his 6'4", 195-pound frame.

25. Toronto Blue Jays (Previous: 20)

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    OF Anthony Alford
    OF Anthony AlfordTommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. OF Anthony Alford21imgA+2018
    2. RHP Sean Reid-Foley20imgA2017
    3. RHP Jon Harris22imgA2018
    4. RHP Conner Greene21imgA+2017
    5. OF Vladimir Guerrero Jr.17imgROK2021
    6. SS Richard Urena20imgA+2018
    7. 1B Rowdy Tellez20imgAA2018
    8. RHP T.J. Zeuch20imgDRAFT PICK2019
    9. LHP Angel Perdomo22imgA2018
    10. C Max Pentecost23imgA2018

    State of the Farm System

    Trades have severely depleted the Toronto Blue Jays farm system in recent years, but they still have a trio of potential front-line arms in Sean Reid-Foley, Jon Harris and Conner Greene and a high-ceiling outfielder in Anthony Alford headlining the system.

    The system has a lot of quality pitching depth and they added to that with the selection of T.J. Zeuch in the first round. They also have one of the biggest prospect X-factors in the league in Vladimir Guerrero Jr. who has yet to begin his pro career stateside but has as high a ceiling as anyone.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Anthony Alford

    The quarterback of the Southern Mississippi football team, Anthony Alford has only recently turned his full attention to the baseball diamond. He took a huge step forward with a .298/.398/.421 line, flashing an advanced approach with a 13.8 percent walk rate. He's off to a slow start this season, but still has the highest ceiling in the organization.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Sean Reid-Foley

    A case can be made for Conner Greene or Jon Harris here, but right-hander Sean Reid-Foley earns top billing among the Blue Jays' pitching prospects thanks to his strong start this season. With a four-pitch repertoire highlighted by a fastball that touches 98 and a plus slider, he's posted a 2.95 ERA, 1.121 WHIP and 59 strikeouts in 58 innings for Single-A Lansing.

    Prospect on the Rise: LHP Angel Perdomo

    Angel Perdomo checked in as the Blue Jays' No. 26 in the Baseball America Prospect Handbook, but his stock is undoubtedly on the rise. At 6'6", 200 pounds and with a fastball that already touches 94 he offers as much projectability as any pitcher in their system. Now he's turning heads against Single-A competition with a 2.45 ERA, 1.057 WHIP and a 75-27 K-BB ratio in 58.3 innings.

24. Seattle Mariners (Previous: 26)

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    RHP Edwin Diaz
    RHP Edwin DiazMark Cunningham/Getty Images

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. OF Tyler O'Neill21imgAA2017
    2. OF Kyle Lewis20imgDRAFT PICK2019
    3. RHP Edwin Diaz22imgMLB2016
    4. OF Alex Jackson20imgA2019
    5. RHP Nick Neidert19imgA2019
    6. SS Drew Jackson22imgA+2018
    7. LHP Luiz Gohara19imgA-2018
    8. OF Boog Powell23imgAAA2016
    9. LHP Ryan Yarbrough24imgAA2017
    10. 1B D.J. Peterson24imgAAA2016

    State of the Farm System

    The Seattle Mariners system improved considerably when Mercer University slugger Kyle Lewis slipped to them at No. 11 overall. They also added one of the top prep bats (Joe Rizzo) and a quality college middle infielder (Bryson Brigman) with their next two picks, as those three should give the system a shot in the arm.

    That said, players like Alex Jackson and D.J. Peterson have been huge disappointments in recent years and prior to adding Lewis the team was sorely lacking in impact talent. There's depth here, and there's still time for Jackson to be an elite-level prospect, but for now it's hard to view them as a top-20 system.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Tyler O'Neill

    It's tempting to thrust top pick Kyle Lewis into this spot right out of the gates, but Tyler O'Neill has earned top billing among Mariners position-player prospects. He posted an .874 OPS with 32 home runs at the High-A level last year, and he's been even better this year in Double-A with a .321/.384/.557 line that includes 18 doubles, 12 home runs and 54 RBI in 63 games.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Edwin Diaz

    The Mariners' new front office decided to move Edwin Diaz to the bullpen this season and there's no question he has the stuff to be a future closer. He's proven durable despite his lanky at 6'3", 165 pound frame, but his upper 90s fastball and plus slider will play up as a reliever and he could be up for good after earning a promotion to the majors earlier this month.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Zack Littell

    Zack Littell was far enough off the prospect radar heading into the season that he wasn't mentioned among the team's top 30 prospects in this year's Baseball America Prospect Handbook. However, he's off to a great start in his second go-around in Single-A with a 3.04 ERA and 1.188 WHIP in 80 innings of work and he's improved his strikeout rate from 6.7 to 8.6 K/9. It will be interesting to see how the 20-year-old handles the next level of competition and a promotion should be coming soon.

23. Arizona Diamondbacks (Previous: 24)

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    OF Anfernee Grier
    OF Anfernee GrierButch Dill/Associated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. RHP Braden Shipley24imgAAA2016
    2. OF Anfernee Grier20imgDRAFT PICK2020
    3. C/OF Peter O'Brien25imgAAA2016
    4. LHP Alex Young22imgA2018
    5. SS Dawel Lugo21imgA+2019
    6. IF Domingo Leyba20imgA+2019
    7. LHP Cody Reed20imgA+2019
    8. RHP Jon Duplantier21imgDRAFT PICK2020
    9. RHP Yoan Lopez23imgAA2017
    10. LHP Anthony Banda22imgAA2017

    State of the Farm System

    The Arizona Diamondbacks gave up a pair of front-line prospects in Dansby Swanson and Aaron Blair when they acquired Shelby Miller, and that dropped them into the bottom third among systems heading into the year.

    Adding Anfernee Grier in the first round gives them a top-end outfield prospect and Jon Duplantier was a steal at No. 89 overall, but this is still a system that is short on impact talent. Assuming Braden Shipley and Peter O'Brien both wind up in the majors for good before 2016 is over, they could be even lower by season's end.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Anfernee Grier

    It's tempting to put Peter O'Brien here with his 1.025 OPS and 17 home runs, but he still has a lot of swing-and-miss to his game and no clear defensive position. Instead, we'll go with first-round pick Anfernee Grier who plays a terrific center field and has a good hit tool and plus speed. He hit .366/.457/.576 with 12 home runs and 19 steals this spring at Auburn.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Braden Shipley

    With Archie Bradley graduating to the majors and Aaron Blair traded to the Braves, Braden Shipley is a fairly easy choice here as the top pitching prospect. He has a polished three-pitch mix with a fastball that sits in the low 90s, a terrific changeup and a tight curveball and he's a plus athlete to boot. He should be a fixture in the Arizona rotation in the near future.

    Prospect on the Rise: LHP Anthony Banda

    Anthony Banda as acquired at the deadline in 2014 in the deal that sent Gerardo Parra to the Milwaukee Brewers. He was 8-8 with a 3.32 ERA in 151.2 innings with High-A Visalia last year to earn the No. 15 spot in the organization in the Baseball America Prospect Handbook. He earns a spot in our top 10 with a 2.37 ERA and 9.9 K/9 so far in 68.1 Double-A innings.

22. San Francisco Giants (Previous: 21)

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    SS Christian Arroyo
    SS Christian ArroyoMark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. SS Christian Arroyo21imgAA2017
    2. RHP Phil Bickford20imgA2018
    3. RHP Tyler Beede23imgAA2017
    4. 1B Christopher Shaw22imgA+2018
    5. SS Lucius Fox18imgA2019
    6. C Aramis Garcia23imgA+2018
    7. RHP Samuel Coonrod23imgA+2018
    8. OF Bryan Reynolds21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    9. OF Heath Quinn21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    10. RHP Michael Santos21imgA2019

    State of the Farm System

    The San Francisco Giants farm system has rarely looked like one of the best in baseball on paper, but they always seem to find a way to develop MLB contributors even if they're not highly regarded prospects.

    Phil Bickford, Tyler Beede and Samuel Coonrod give them three quality pitching prospects, and they did well to add a pair of first-round caliber outfielders in Bryan Reynolds and Heath Quinn in the draft despite not holding a first-round pick. There still doesn't seem to be a slam dunk future star in the organization, though.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: SS Christian Arroyo

    Most viewed the selection of Christian Arroyo at No. 25 in the 2013 draft as a reach by the Giants, but he's impressed every step of the way with his advanced offensive game. He hit .304 with 39 extra-base hits in High-A last season, and at some point figures to make the move to third base since he's blocked by Brandon Crawford in the majors.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Phil Bickford

    Originally taken No. 10 overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2013 draft, Phil Bickford spent a season at Cal State Fullerton and a season at the College of Southern Nevada before being taken No. 18 overall in 2015. His fastball touches 98, his slider can be a plus-plus pitch and his changeup is improving so the front-line stuff is there. With a 2.70 ERA, 1.067 WHIP and 10.4 K/9 in 60 innings in Single-A he's jumped Tyler Beede as the team's top pitching prospect.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Michael Santos

    The Giants' No. 19 prospect according to the Baseball America Prospect Handbook, Michael Santos made nine starts in Single-A last season and back at that level this year he's been one of the breakout prospects of the year. He has a 2.91 ERA, 1.125 WHIP and an impressive 44-5 K-BB ratio in 58.2 innings. He has advanced pitchability for his age and there's still some room for projection in his 6'4", 170-pound frame.

21. San Diego Padres (Previous: 25)

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    OF Manuel Margot
    OF Manuel MargotJennifer Stewart/Getty Images

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. OF Manuel Margot21imgAAA2017
    2. OF Hunter Renfroe24imgAAA2016
    3. SS Javier Guerra20imgA+2018
    4. LHP Logan Allen19imgA2020
    5. LHP Eric Lauer21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    6. OF Michael Gettys20imgA2018
    7. SS Jose Rondon22imgAA2017
    8. 2B Luis Urias19imgA+2019
    9. SS Ruddy Giron19imgA2019
    10. C Austin Allen22imgA2019

     

    State of the Farm System

    The San Diego Padres gutted their farm system in an effort to build a winner last season, and when the dust settled on the 2015 season they had a losing record and a thinned out farm system with which to begin rebuilding.

    Adding Manuel Margot, Javier Guerra and Logan Allen in exchange for Craig Kimbrel kicked off their efforts to restock the system this offseason, and with six picks inside the top 100 they added plenty more young talent in this year's draft. This is a system on the rise, and the 2016 draft class will be the determining factor in how high.

     

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Manuel Margot

    One of the key pieces acquired from the Boston Red Sox in the Craig Kimbrel deal, Manuel Margot figures to make his MLB debut some time later this season. He's hitting .300/.353/.432 with 22 extra-base hits and 16 stolen bases and all signs point to him being the long-term answer in center field.

     

    Top Pitching Prospect: LHP Logan Allen

    Another player acquired in the aforementioned Kimbrel deal, Logan Allen was an eight-round pick last year and he debuted with a 1.11 ERA, 0.781 WHIP and 9.6 K/9 in 24.1 innings. The 19-year-old has a good four-pitch mix with a mid-90s fastball backed by a curveball, slider and changeup that should all be at least average offerings.

    Eric Lauer,  who was taken No. 25 overall in this year's draft, won National Player of the Year honors at Kent State after going 10-2 with a 0.69 ERA and 125 strikeouts in 104 innings. He'll be pushing hard for this spot.

     

    Prospect on the Rise: 2B Luis Urias

    Luis Urias was ranked as the organization's No. 29 prospect in the Baseball America Prospect Handbook. He impressed in his full-season debut last year while playing up the middle alongside the more highly regarded Ruddy Giron, and he's hitting .308/.366/.385 with 14 extra-base hits so far this year. Urias turned 19 on June 3, so he's well ahead of the developmental curve in High-A.

20. Chicago White Sox (Previous: 23)

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    SS Tim Anderson
    SS Tim AndersonJeff Haynes/Associated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. SS Tim Anderson22imgMLB2016
    2. RHP Carson Fulmer22imgA+2017
    3. C Zack Collins21imgDRAFT PICK2018
    4. RHP Zack Burdi21imgDRAFT PICK2018
    5. RHP Spencer Adams19imgA+2018
    6. OF Micker Adolfo19imgA-2020
    7. RHP Tyler Danish21imgMLB2016
    8. 3B Trey Michalczewski20imgAA2017
    9. OF Jacob May24imgAAA2017
    10. RHP Zachary Thompson22imgA2018

    State of the Farm System

    The Chicago White Sox have drafted well in recent years, but their farm system is still lacking in overall depth and trading away Frankie Montas, Trayce Thompson and Micah Johnson in the offseason to acquire Todd Frazier didn't help any.

    Tim Anderson will soon be off this list after recently being called up, but the team added two of the top college bats in this year's class (Zack Collins, Jameson Fisher), an electric arm (Zack Burdi) and huge upside arm (Alec Hansen) in what was one of the better drafts by any team. It helps, but the lack of prospect depth still keeps them at No. 20.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: SS Tim Anderson

    The White Sox finally cut Jimmy Rollins and his .624 OPS loose last week, and with that the Tim Anderson era has officially begun in Chicago. His bat has never been the question with a .301/.340/.426 line in 1,471 minor league plate appearances, but he still has work to do defensively.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Carson Fulmer

    Despite a max-effort delivery and some questions about his command, many still considered Carson Fulmer to be the top arm in the 2015 draft. He fell to the White Sox at No. 8 overall and they'll give him every chance to start, but his future may be at the back of the bullpen. Regardless, his stuff is plus-plus and he'll make an impact in some capacity.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Matt Cooper

    Matt Cooper is a bit behind on the developmental scale as a 24-year-old in High-A, but his early season numbers are tough to ignore. He's posted a 95-21 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 77.2 innings, and he could be a real pop-up prospect if that success carries over when he's inevitably promoted to Double-A.

19. New York Mets (Previous: 17)

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    RHP Justin Dunn
    RHP Justin DunnAssociated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. 1B Dominic Smith21imgAA2018
    2. SS Amed Rosario20imgAA2017
    3. OF Brandon Nimmo23imgAAA2016
    4. SS Gavin Cecchini22imgAAA2016
    5. OF Wuilmer Becerra21imgA+2018
    6. RHP Justin Dunn20imgDRAFT PICK2019
    7. OF Desmond Lindsay19imgROK2020
    8. SS Luis Carpio18imgROK2020
    9. SS Milton Ramos20imgA2019
    10. RHP Marcos Molina20imgAA2018

    State of the Farm System

    The New York Mets farm system has churned out some phenomenal talent in recent years, including Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Steven Matz, Michael Conforto and Travis d'Arnaud, but the well is starting to run a bit dry.

    Dominic Smith and Amed Rosario look like future everyday players and Brandon Nimmo still has a chance to live up to his first-round pedigree, but the pitching side of things has thinned considerably. Grabbing two of the top college arms on the board in Justin Dunn (No. 19) and Anthony Kay (No. 31) will help that situation, and they followed that with four quality college bats in Peter Alonso, Blake Tiberi, Michael Paez and Colby Woodmansee.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: 1B Dominic Smith

    Dominic Smith may never develop prototypical power at the first base position, but he has one of the best hit tools in all of the minors and a very advanced approach for his age. The 21-year-old hit .362/.483/.511 in the Arizona Fall League and has made the jump to Double-A this year as he continues to move quickly.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Justin Dunn

    Used primarily as a reliever during his time at Boston College, Justin Dunn slid into the rotation in April and his draft stock took off. He always had the look for a potential starter with a good three-pitch repertoire and an athletic frame, and proving himself as part of the weekend rotation helped prove the scouts right. With Steven Matz graduating to the majors, Dunn headlines the next wave of pitching talent in the organization.

    Prospect on the Rise: LHP P.J. Conlon

    Not ranked among the team's top 30 prospect in the Baseball America Prospect Handbook, P.J. Conlon was a 13th-round pick last year out of the University of San Diego. After pitching out of the bullpen in his pro debut with great results (17.0 IP, 1.06 ERA, 13.2 K/9) he has moved into the starting rotation in Single-A and gone 8-1 with a 1.34 ERA, 0.937 WHIP and 56 strikeouts in 73.2 innings. 

18. St. Louis Cardinals (Previous: 18)

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    OF Magneuris Sierra
    OF Magneuris SierraScott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. RHP Alex Reyes21imgAAA2016
    2. RHP Luke Weaver22imgAA2017
    3. RHP Jack Flaherty20imgA+2018
    4. OF Magneuris Sierra20imgA2018
    5. SS Delvin Perez17imgDRAFT PICK2018
    6. SS Edmundo Sosa20imgA2019
    7. OF Harrison Bader22imgAA2018
    8. RHP Junior Fernandez18imgA-2020
    9. OF Nick Plummer19imgA-2019
    10. RHP Dakota Hudson21imgDRAFT PICK2018

    State of the Farm System

    After rolling the dice on Delvin Perez with their first pick, the St. Louis Cardinals added two polished college arms in Dakota Hudson and Connor Jones to a farm system that is stocked in the lower levels but lacking polished talent.

    Guys like Magneuris Sierra, Edmundo Sosa, Junior Fernandez, Nick Plummer, Jake Woodford, Ronnie Williams and Sandy Alcantara all have a chance to emerge as elite-level prospects, but they are still years from contributing and until they develop further it's hard to rank the Cardinals any higher.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Magneuris Sierra

    With Stephen Piscotty using up his rookie eligibility last season, there's a noticeable shortage of MLB-ready position-player talent in the Cardinals system. That being said, Magneuris Sierra and Edmundo Sosa both represent high-upside players making their full-season debut and Sierra has held his own so far with a .298 average and 12 stolen bases. He's ahead of the developmental curve at this point and is still a ways from reaching his ceiling.

    Top Pitching Prospect: RHP Alex Reyes

    After serving a 50-game suspension for a second positive marijuana test, Alex Reyes has picked up right where he left off in 2015 by continuing to dominate MiLB hitters. He posted a 2.49 ERA, 1.174 WHIP and 151 strikeouts in 101.1 innings last season while reaching Double-A, and so far in his Triple-A debut he has a 3.32 ERA and 39 strikeouts in 21.2 innings. All the tools are there for him to be their next homegrown ace.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Sandy Alcantara

    A 70-grade fastball that sits at 95 and can touch 101 was enough to put Sandy Alcantara on the prospect radar, but middling secondary stuff and a lack of command kept him from being one of the team's top prospects. Control remains an issue as he's walking batters at a 4.7 BB/9 rate, but he's continued to overpower hitters in his full-season debut with 71 strikeouts in 55.1 innings. He's rough around the edges, but his upside is as high as any pitcher in the organization outside of Reyes.

17. Tampa Bay Rays (Previous: 14)

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    LHP Blake Snell
    LHP Blake SnellChris O'Meara/Associated Press

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. LHP Blake Snell23imgMLB2016
    2. SS Willy Adames20imgAA2017
    3. RHP Brent Honeywell21imgA+2017
    4. 3B Joshua Lowe18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    5. OF Garrett Whitley19imgROK2020
    6. 1B Jake Bauers20imgAA2017
    7. RHP Jacob Faria22imgAA2017
    8. RHP Taylor Guerrieri23imgAA2017
    9. 1B Casey Gillaspie23imgAA2017
    10. SS Daniel Robertson21imgAAA2016

    State of the Farm System

    The Tampa Bay Rays system as never been great at producing position-player talent, but they continue to churn out the arms and Blake Snell is the latest to make his way into the big league rotation.

    Garrett Whitley and Josh Lowe give the organization a pair of bats with star potential and Willy Adames should take over as the everyday shortstop in the near future. Brent Honeywell looks to be next up in terms of elite pitching prospects, but they're a bit thin on arms overall at this point.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: SS Willy Adames

    The key acquisition in the three-team deal that sent David Price to the Detroit Tigers, shortstop Willy Adames still has a chance to make that deal look like a win for the Rays. A plus defender who won't turn 21 until September, Adames is currently hitting .285/.381/.504 with 20 doubles and eight home runs in Double-A. He has everything you look for in a standout everyday shortstop.

    Top Pitching Prospect: LHP Blake Snell

    With the Super Two deadline passed, it appears Blake Snell is finally set to join the Rays' rotation full time. He made one spot start earlier this season, allowing two hits and one run while striking out six in five innings and he has a chance to make an immediate impact. The Minor League Player of the Year last season went 15-4 with a 1.41 ERA, 1.022 WHIP and 163 strikeouts in 134 innings over three levels.

    Prospect on the Rise: RHP Hunter Wood

    Hunter Wood entered the prospect conversation last season when he posted a 2.20 ERA, 0.875 WHIP and 113 strikeouts in 106.1 innings but the fact that he was 21 and pitching in Single-A/High-A still kept him on the prospect periphery. However, he's off to a great start once again this season with a 1.62 ERA, 0.914 WHIP and 67 strikeouts in 77.2 innings. He's somewhat undersized at 6'1", but at the very least he looks like a future setup man with a fastball that touches 96 and a plus curveball among his four pitches.

16. Cleveland Indians (Previous: 12)

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    OF Clint Frazier
    OF Clint FrazierMark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. OF Clint Frazier21imgAA2017
    2. OF Bradley Zimmer23imgAA2016
    3. 1B Bobby Bradley20imgA+2019
    4. LHP Justus Sheffield20imgA+2018
    5. LHP Rob Kaminsky21imgAA2017
    6. RHP Mike Clevinger25imgAAA2016
    7. RHP Triston McKenzie18imgROK2020
    8. LHP Brady Aiken19imgROK2018
    9. 3B Nolan Jones18imgDRAFT PICK2021
    10. C Francisco Mejia20imgA2018

    State of the Farm System

    The Cleveland Indians system is headlined by a trio of bats in Clint Frazier, Bradley Zimmer and Bobby Bradley, but it's their impressive pitching depth that earns them high marks in these rankings.

    Justin Sheffield, Rob Kaminsky, Mike Clevinger, Triston McKenzie, Brady Aiken and Juan Hillman all have top-tier prospect potential and outside of the 25-year-old Clevinger all are still in the early stages of their development. Getting Nolan Jones at No. 55 in this year's draft was a steal, but Will Benson at No. 14 could be a pick they regret with Alex Kirilloff, Blake Rutherford and others still on the board.

    Top Position-Player Prospect: OF Clint Frazier

    Bradley Zimmer might be the first of the Indians' top outfield prospects to reach the majors, but it's Clint Frazier who has the higher ceiling and ranks as the better overall prospect. He's still working on making consistent contact and turning his raw power into game power, but he has the look of a future middle-of-the-order run producer. He's hitting .308/.402/.500 with 19 doubles and six home runs this season in his first taste of Double-A action.

    Top Pitching Prospect: LHP Justus Sheffield

    The Indians have a wealth of high-upside pitching prospects all lumped in the same area in their organizational rankings, but we'll go ahead and call Justus Sheffield the best of the bunch. The left-hander is undersized at 5'10" but he's shown advanced pitchability and a quality three-pitch mix that should allow him to stick as a starter. Others in the organization might have a higher ceiling, but he brings the best mix of upside and floor at this point.

    Prospect on the Rise: SS Yu-Cheng Chang

    Signed to a $500,000 bonus out of Taiwan as part of the 2013 international free agent class, Yu-Cheng Chang is a jack-of-all-trades type prospect who continues to out-perform his tools. Defensively he profiles more as a utility guy than a true everyday shortstop, but his bat plays better than that and he's currently hitting .278/.346/.504 with 32 extra-base hits and eight stolen bases in High-A.

15. Oakland Athletics (Previous: 19)

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    LHP A.J. Puk
    LHP A.J. PukSteven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 10 Prospects

    NameAgeBornCurrent LevelETA
    1. SS Franklin Barreto20imgAA2017
    2. LHP A.J. Puk21imgDRAFT PICK2019
    3. 3B Matt Chapman23imgAA2017
    4. 3B Renato Nunez22