Minors : : General
Wednesday, November 21, 2012

BP Top Prospects: Cleveland Indians

Jason Parks        
Photo: Perfect Game
This story originally appeared on BaseballProspectus.com.  To view the full, original story, please visit this link.

State of the Farm: A crowd of people turned away. But I just had to look. Having read the book.”

Prospect rankings primer

The Top Ten

  1. SS Francisco Lindor
  2. 2B/3B Dorssys Paulino
  3. 2B Ronny Rodriguez
  4. RHP Mitch Brown
  5. CF Luigi Rodriguez
  6. RHP Danny Salazar
  7. RHP Cody Allen
  8. OF Tyler Naquin
  9. IF Tony Wolters
  10. 2B Jose Ramirez

1. Francisco Lindor

Position: SS
DOB: 11/14/1993
Height/Weight: 5’11’’ 175 lbs.
Bats/Throws: B/R
Drafted/Acquired: First round, 2011 draft, Montverde High School (Montverde, FL)
2012 Stats: .257/.352/.355 at Low-A Lake County (122 games)
The Tools: 6 arm; 7 glove; 6 future hit

What Happened in 2012:
 The 18-year-old shortstop jumped straight to full-season ball, after only five games of professional experience at the short-season level, and held his own with the bat and wowed onlookers with his impressive defensive skills.

Strengths: Massive defensive profile at a premium position; 7 glove; smooth as silk actions; soft hands; it's all very easy; arm is strong; range is above-average; instincts are Vizquelian; mature approach at the plate; tracks the ball very well; makes a pitcher work; hit tool and power have room to grow; could be plus hitter with 4 power; runs well; natural feel for the game; advanced skills for age.

Weaknesses: Hit tool needs several grade growth; controls the bat well, but often makes weak contact; needs to add strength; shows better bat speed from the right-side; power potential is limited; will be defense-first player with gravy offense; won’t be plus runner at physical maturity.

Overall Future Potential: 7; all-star level player

Explanation of Risk: High risk; player shows advanced skills and game maturity, but is only 19-years-old; might not face legit test until Double-A.

Fantasy Future: Lindor has the potential to hit for average, with good on-base skills. He isn’t going to hit for much over-the-fence power (5-10 HR), but should produce good extra-base hit totals (25-plus doubles; 5-plus triples) and some stolen bases (15-plus), all from a premium defensive position.

The Year Ahead: Lindor will jump to High-A, but the real test will probably have to wait until he reaches the Double-A level, where the questions about the future utility of his bat will find some answers. Lindor is a slick defender, and that should carry him all the way to the majors. But the bat is what could make him a star. He’s unlikely to explode in High-A, and his 2013 numbers could look very similar to the numbers he produced at the Low-A level. At this stage of his career, its not about the numbers. For Lindor, he just needs to be getting swings and keep taking reps at short. He’s so young that development is the driving force, and production is a passenger.

Major league ETA: 2015

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