Updated Future Forty
Dave · August 8, 2005 at 8:27 am · Filed Under Mariners
A few days later than I had hoped for, but we have a new Future Forty. A ton of changes on this one, for obvious reasons, as the M’s acquired four new players, moved several around, and I’ve adjusted the risk and reward ratings for players who have changed my mind recently. Among the activity:
We welcome Yorman Bazardo, Jesse Foppert, Mike Flannery, and Natanael Mateo to the system. All four find a place on the Future Forty, though at varying levels. Bazardo is the best prospect of the bunch, mostly because he has the best shot of actually making the major leagues as a starting pitcher. Foppert could start or relieve, but with his injury history and lack of a true offspeed pitch, a lot of people expect him to end up coming out of the bullpen. Flannery and Mateo are both power arms who are strictly relievers.
We waive goodbye to Daniel Santin, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Cha Baek, and Brandon Moorhead. Santin’s being classified as a DH, and no one thinks he’s going to hit enough to make it to the big leagues without playing the field. Smith and Baek have taken steps backward and could be with other organizations next year, while Moorhead, who is still somewhat interesting, is 25 and hasn’t yet cracked Double-A, so he got squeezed by the new pickups.
Among those who have seen their stock go up are Yuniesky Betancourt, who got to Seattle faster than anyone expected, and Doyle, who finally gets a shot at to play regularly at the big league level. Adam Jones also continues to impress in Double-A and has moved himself to the top of the Jones/Tui/Cabrera trio that had been lumped together on the FF for the past few months. Jones, while still almost certainly moving to CF next year, has established himself as a very nice prospect, one of the better young players in the game.
Shin-Soo Choo leads those on the way down, as his total inability to hit lefties and his lack of power have ticketed him for a return trip to Tacoma next year. He’s not adjusting well to better pitching, and right now, if he ends up as a solid fourth outfielder in the majors, it will be a pleasant surprise. Wladimir Balentien and Yung-Chi Chen have also seen their stock slip a bit.
There are a few guys in the system who I still think could be nice pieces for the team down the line, even if not as everyday players, who aren’t getting a ton of press. Sabastian Boucher, Oswaldo Navarro, and T.J. Bohn head up my list of guys who are flying a bit under the radar (though, to be fair, Boucher is hitting the crap out of the ball, and is getting some love from within the system).
As always, use this thread as a catch-all for any minor league questions you may have. I’ll try to answer as many as humanly possible. If I miss something, feel free to email it to us.