2012 Top Prospects
The 2012 Top MLB Prospects list, according to MLB.com, has been released. It is a list which recognizes the top 10 Minor League players at each position in anticipation for the upcoming season. The list features four players from the St. Louis Cardinals’ organization: 1B Matt Adams, 2B Kolten Wong, 3B Zack Cox and RHP Shelby Miller.
Adams, a native of Philipsburg, Penn., and last season’s TEX League Player of the Year, was selected by the Cardinals in the 23rd round (699th overall) of the 2009 Amateur Entry Draft. Last season he hit .300 with 32 home runs and 101 RBI while posting a .357 OBP and a .923 OPS. With the departure of Albert Pujols, he could be in line as the future first baseman of the Cardinals.
Born in Hilo, Hawaii, Wong was selected by the Cardinals in the first round (22nd overall) of the 2011 Amateur Entry Draft. Last season he posted a .335 batting average with five home runs and 25 RBI. He also posted an OBP of .401 and swiped nine bags. Having already made a quick transition to professional baseball straight out of college, he could be in the majors sooner rather than later.
A product of Louisville, Ky., Cox was selected by the Cardinals in the first round (25th overall) of the 2010 Amateur Entry Draft out of the University of Arkansas. In high school he was honored as an All-American by Under Armour, Rawlings and Louisvile Slugger. Last season, which he split time at Palm Beach and Springfield, he hit .306 with 13 home runs and 68 RBI.
Miller, a flamethrower from Houston, Texas, and recipient of back-to-back St. Louis Cardinals’ Organization Minor League Pitcher of the Year honors (2010-11), was selected by the Cardinals in the first round (19th overall) of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. Last season he appeared in 25 games (with both Palm Beach and Springfield) posting an 11-6 record with a 2.77 ERA and 170 strikeouts.
The rest of the list plays out like this: Bryce Harper (Nationals) and Mike Trout (Angels) headline a stout outfield group while Anthony Rizzo, who was recently traded to the Cubs from the Padres, figures to join the big club sometime this year as does his replacement in San Diego, Yonder Alonso. Newly acquired Jesus Montero (Mariners) is the standout Minor Leagues catcher after being acquired this offseason from the Yankees.
The top three 3B prospects, Nolan Arenado (Rockies), Miguel Sano (Twins) and Anthony Rendon (Nationals) all look ready to make an impact this season while the Orioles have the brightest future at middle infield with prospects 2B Jonathon Schoop and SS Manny Machado. Top LHP Matt Moore should be up with the Rays sometime this year while top RHP Julio Teheran will be looking to make his return to the Braves’ rotation.
This season is shaping up to be one of the most active in terms of promotions from the minors in recent history as there is an overload of talent ready to make the jump to The Show.
By: Michael Stagno, Memphis Redbirds media relations