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Cleveland Indians prospect list: #15 Carlos Moncrief

Originally drafted as a pitcher, Carlos Moncrief moved to the outfield and now is on the cusp of the breaking into the majors.

Carlos Moncrief
Carlos Moncrief
Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

Let's Go Tribe is putting together its own ranking of the top Indians prospects, with readers voting on each entry. Here are the previous entries in the series:

  1. Francisco Lindor
  2. Clint Frazier
  3. Bradley Zimmer
  4. Giovanny Urshela
  5. Francisco Mejia
  6. Tyler Naquin
  7. Bobby Bradley
  8. James Ramsey
  9. Justus Sheffield
  10. Erik Gonzalez
  11. Mike Papi
  12. Mitch Brown
  13. Jesus Aguilar
  14. Yu-Cheng Chang

This week's voting was exetremely close, but in the end Carlos Moncrief prevailed, edging out Luis Lugo and Ryan Merritt:

  • Luis Lugo 24%
  • Shawn Morimando 1%
  • Ryan Merritt 24%
  • Carlos Moncrief 30%
  • Cody Anderson 16%
  • Grant Hockin 1%
  • Nellie Rodriguez 3%
Moncrief is old for a prospect (he turned 26 this past November) but there's a reason why: for his first two professional seasons, he was a pitcher. He moved from the mound to the outfield in 2010, and moved up the ladder with solid, though not spectacular results. His tools kept him a viable prospect despite those rather lackluster numbers, and that patience was rewarded with a breakout 2013 season in which he hit .284/.354/.470 in the Eastern League, not exactly a hitter-friendly league. In 2014 he moved to Columbus, and now appears to be on the cusp of helping the major-league club.

What makes Moncrief a tantalizing player is that he has all the tools/skills you'd like a corner outfielder to have: an excellent arm, good range, and raw power. And although he's probably not going to be a base-stealing threat in the majors, Moncrief won't be a liability on the basepaths, either.

Moncrief is currently on the 40-man roster, meaning that he's just a injury away from playing in Cleveland. The problem for him, though, is that time isn't on his side. At this point in his career, what you see from him now is probably what you're going to get, and the Indians are suddenly awash in upper-level outfield prospects. Moncrief wouldn't seem to fit on the current roster as a reserve outfielder (he hits left-handed, and shouldn't be playing center field). He's going to have to impress this spring in Arizona and in Columbus, and hope that an opportunity presents itself.

Who do you think should be the #16 Indians prospect?

Remember to also let us know in the comments which player you think should join the voting next. At least two of the players in this week's poll will fail to make the top 20, so now is the time to push hard for whatever pet cause you may have.