The World Series is over. The MVPs are decided. The baseball doldrums are upon us.
Fear not! Baseball Farm’s offseason content will keep you dreaming about top prospects all winter.
Today, we look at 5 of the top hitting performances from the 2017 draft class. These are highlights presented in no particular order, but represent some names you should know heading into the 2018 season:
This left-handed hitting CF prospect was Kansas City’s 4th round pick in 2017. Michael Gigliotti showed a lot of promise in Rookie ball (152 wRC+), and mostly held that performance upon his promotion to the A-Full Season Sally League (133 wRC+).
For dynasty leaguers, Gigliotti’s toolsy profile is intriguing. He slugged .456 across both minor league levels last summer, while also stealing 22 bags in 64 games. His potential power/speed profile tilts more to the speed end of the spectrum, but it is still a valuable profile. In addition, he displayed an excellent batting eye (0.98 BB/K ratio, .420 OBP) which suggests he has the potential to be a future leadoff hitter.
Alan Trejo, a 17th round selection out of San Diego State, was selected as a Pioneer League post-season All-star for his work with the Grand Junction Rockies last summer. Trejo flashed promise as a power-hitting middle infielder, posting a .566 slugging % with 7 HR and 13 2B in 173 Rookie League at-bats. His power hitting is backed up by an underlying .220 ISO.
Trejo also played all over the infield last summer, logging 21 games at SS, 17 games at 3B, and 9 games at 2B. This positional versatility will come in handy as Trejo finds his place in a Colorado Rockies system that is jam packed with hitting prospects (Baseball Farm’s only A+ rated organization of hitters).
Daulton Varsho is a prospect name to know heading into the 2018 season. He might not pop-up on a myriad of top-100 lists quite yet, but Varsho is a left-handed hitting catching prospect who excelled in his first year of professional ball.
Varsho played 50 games for the Hillsboro Hops, the Diamondbacks Class-A Short Season affiliate in the Northwest League. His slash line (.311/.368/.534) was very good, but arguably his advanced and peripheral stats were better. He posted a .223 ISO, .407 wOBA, 150 wRC+, and a 0.57 BB/K ratio. Bearing in mind that catching prospects can take a little extra time to make the big leagues, Varsho should still be on your watch list heading into 2018.
On top of boasting one of the greatest names in baseball, Tampa Bay’s 34th round draft pick Trey Hair also had a strong season in the Appalachian League last summer.
Our ‘Blueberry’ ranking method assigns each prospect a percentile ranking based on his 2017 performance relative to all other MiLB performances. The ‘Blueberry’ categories are AVG – OBP – SLG – SBs – ABs. Hair’s 2017 Blueberry number was 8 – 9 – 9 – 7 – 6, making him one of the elite statistical performers in last year’s draft class.
Dallas Carroll split his time evenly between the Rookie Level Pioneer League (30 games) and Class A Full Season Midwest League (30 games) in 2017. Carroll performed exceptionally well in Rookie ball (.336/.418/.525, .418 wOBA, 129 wRC+), and was able to hold most of his performance in a 30 game stint in the A-Full Season Midwest League (.346 wOBA, 115 wRC+).
Carroll shows strong plate discipline, posting a 0.70 BB/K ratio across both levels last season. His ‘Blueberry’ line of 8 – 9 – 8 – 8 – 7 last season was very strong.