Right-handed starting pitcher Aaron Civale is our No. 18 Cleveland Indians prospect, dropping from No. 12 last season after he had some injury issues in 2018.
Civale was drafted in 2016 in the third round, a round before Shane Bieber, and he seemed to be on the same path to the big leagues Bieber took before a pair of injuries slowed him down last year.
The 23-year-old started 2018 strong with a pair of scoreless outings, one 6.0 inning, six strikeout game and one 7.0 inning, seven strikeout game, before a sore shoulder put him on the MiLB disabled list on May 8.
Civale returned a month later and performed well, dropping his season ERA to 2.35 through 10 starts, but then a horrid stretch of pitching saw his ERA rise to 4.19 by the time he had performed 15 starts, including a 2.2 inning outing where he gave up 9 earned runs and failed to strike out a batter.
His season ended Aug. 27 just two batters into his start when he left the game with a lat injury, finishing the season on the disabled list.
Civale doubled his walk rate and saw his strikeout rate tumble while he battled injuries and inconsistency in 2018. He also had issues with home runs, allowing a career-high 1.09 per nine innings.
When healthy, he has one of the best sliders in the system and a near Bieber-esque ability to avoid giving up bases on balls.
Hopefully returning to form, Civale will likely repeat 2019 beginning at Double-A. Of note, he was a former bullpen arm for Northeastern University before being drafted and could potentially be available to help the Tribe out of the bullpen in 2019 as well.
WHO SHOULD BE THE NO. 19 PROSPECT FOR 2019?
Raynel Delgado, 3B (Age 18)
2018 (R): 204 PA, .306/.409/.382, 1 HR, 10 SB, 14.7 BB%, 21.6 K%, 133 wRC+
2018 sixth round pick the Indians paid $664,400 over slot to sign. Delgado held his own in his professional debut, putting up strong numbers and showing great patience at the plate in the AZL.
Eric Haase, C (Age 26)
2018 (AAA): 477 PA, .236/.288/.443, 20 HR, 3 SB, 6.5 BB%, 30.0 K%, 102 wRC+
Had some difficulty adjusting to his first full season at Triple-A but still managed to hit 20 home runs for the third year in a row. Was named the top defensive player in the Indians system by MLB Pipeline after throwing out 48.5 percent of basestealers.
Eli Morgan, RHP (Age 22)
2018 (A): 8 GS, 44.1 IP, 32.9 K%, 4.7 BB%, 1.83 ERA, 2.22 FIP
2018 (A+): 19 GS, 99.0 IP, 24.0 K%, 6.2 BB%, 3.91 ERA, 3.75 FIP
Gonzaga alum drafted in eighth round of 2017 doesn’t have elite velocity or size, but makes up for it with stellar command and the best change-up in the Tribe system, which helps spike his strikeout rate.
Gabrial Rodriguez (Age 16)
2018: did not play
Top Indians international signing of 2018 out of Venezuela, signed for $2.2 million. Standing 6-foot-2, he was the sixth highest-rated international prospect by MLB Pipeline. Should skip DSL and debut in AZL in 2019.
Will Benson, OF (Age 20)
2018 (A): 506 PA, .180/.324/.370, 22 HR, 12 SB, 16.2 BB%, 30.0 K%, 102 wRC+
In first taste of full-season ball, the 2016 first round pick posted an elite walk-rate while dropping his strikeout rate and blasted 22 home runs. Batting average suffered due to horrifically unlucky .218 BABIP but all other signs were positive.
Carlos Vargas, RHP (Age 19)
2018 (R): 9 GS, 34.1 IP, 26.6 K%, 15.6 BB%, 3.93 ERA, 4.54 FIP
Signed in 2016 out of the Dominican Republic, Vargas was already hitting 100 mph in his professional debut last season for the AZL Indians. Many feel he could be the 2019 version of Luis Oviedo with his breakout potential.
Johnathan Rodriguez, OF (Age 19)
2018 (A): 211 PA, .294/.370/.406, 1 HR, 8 SB, 10.4 BB%, 20.9 K%, 122 wRC+
Repeating in Arizona, the 2017 third round pick improved his power, his batting average and his baserunning. More power projected as he continues growing into his 6-foot-3 frame as one of younger players in his draft class.
Who should be the No. 19 Indians prospect?
This poll is closed