Yesterday MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo and Jim Callis released their top 100 prospect list, and it contained three Indians:
- 10. SS Francisco Lindor
- 48. OF Clint Frazier
- 73. RHP Trevor Bauer
Lindor and Frazier were the club's 2011 and 2013 first round selections, while Bauer came from Arizona in the 2012 three-team deal that involved Shin-Soo Choo (from CLE to CIN), Didi Gregorius (CIN to ARI), and Drew Stubbs (CIN to CLE), among others.
Even though Bauer made several appearances with the Indians in 2013 (and some with the Diamondbacks in 2012), he is still considered a rookie by MLB (fewer than 50 MLB innings and fewer than 45 days on an MLB roster) and therefore eligible to appear on this list. Neither Lindor or Frazier have played in a major-league game.
Given that there are 30 teams in MLB, the average per team should be 3.33, so by that measure that Indians are about average as far as having high-end talent. In addition, they have one player in the top 10 (Lindor), so it isn't as if their three snuck in at the very bottom of the list.
Jordan Bastian has an accompanying article with more background on the three Indians to make the list. Included is a quote from Terry Francona about Trevor Bauer's progress over the winter:
"It seems like at least he's coming into camp this year closer to being the pitcher that he wants to be," Francona said. "I think last year was a lot of experimenting and trying to get comfortable in his delivery. It was tough for him at times. He's very open with us on everything. He's tried very hard this winter to get to the point where he's comfortable."
To say Bauer's 2013 season was a disappointment is an understatement. His AAA results are decent, but his starts in Cleveland were anywhere from an adventure (April 6, May 1) to an outright disaster (June 28). But he's only going to be 23 this season, and could play a key part in the 2014 campaign, as Scott Kazmir has left for Oakland and Ubaldo Jimenez will likely be pitching somewhere else next season. That means that unless the Indians make a last-minute signing or trade, Bauer has a decent shot of winning a spot in the rotation this spring.
Francisco Lindor may also play a part in the 2014 season. He will likely start the season in Akron, but there's a good chance that he sees some action in Cleveland at the end of the season, if not sooner. With Asdrubal Cabrera a free agent after the season, Lindor is slated to be the team's starting shortstop in 2015.
The timetable is a bit more cloudy for Clint Frazier because he's so young. He played with the Indians' Arizona League affiliate last summer after the Indians drafted him, and will likely go to Lake County, the organization's full-season A-ball affiliate, this April. He'll likely be shifted from center field to a corner by the time he reaches the majors, but that shouldn't be a problem given his enormous potential at the plate.
Here's how the other AL Central organizations did:
- 1. OF Byron Buxton
- 4. 3B Miguel Sano
- 28. RHP Alex Meyer
- 40. RHP Kohl Stewart
- 90. RHP J.O. Berrios
- 70. RHP Erik Johnson
- 15. 3B Nick Castellanos
- 97. LHP Robbie Ray
Kansas City (4)
- 25. RHP Kyle Zimmer
- 35. RHP Yordano Ventura
- 38. SS Raul Mondesi
- 91. OF Jorge Bonifacio