Power starting right-handed pitcher Ethan Hankins is our No. 9 Cleveland Indians prospect for 2020, dropping five places compared to his 2019 ranking for LGT.
Hankins didn’t do anything wrong to drop so much, it’s more that LGT readers are excited about a few other prospects.
Hankins was a first round compensatory pick by the Indians in the 2018 MLB draft (for the Phillies signing Carlos Santana). He had one of the most intriguing high school arms in the draft, but his stock fell slightly due to an injury in his senior season of high school.
The 6-foot-6, 200 pound flamethrower possesses one of, if not the best fastball in the Indians minor league system, and he utilized it to great effect in 2019, blowing away opposing hitters in the Low-A New York Penn League.
Hankins could not have gotten off to a better start with the Mahoning Valley Scrappers, debuting with consecutive scoreless, hitless, performances, combining for 8.2 innings, no hits, no runs, two walks and 12 strikeouts.
Through nine games in the New York Penn League, Hankins only allowed runs in four of them. He earned Pitcher of the Week honors in June 2019 and was a mid-season All-Star before being promoted to Lake County at the end of the season.
Upon his promotion, Hankins actually improved his strikeout rate to 30%, but he was much more hittable, posting a 4.64 ERA while also walking a career-worst 5.06 per nine innings.
Still just 19 years old, Hankins is a student of the game, as evidenced by his recent interview with Fangraphs, and he has the potential to develop into an elite pitcher as long as he can get his walks under control.
Look for Hankins to start the season in Single-A Lake County, his first full season in the Tribe system, where he’ll have the potential to earn a promotion to High-A depending on how he improves this year.
Logan Allen, LHP (Age 22)
2019 (AAA): 18 GS, 80.0 IP, 22.3 K%, 9.3 BB%, 5.85 ERA, 5.57 FIP
2019 (MLB): 4 GS, 27.2 IP, 13.4 K%, 10.2 BB%, 6.18 ERA, 5.49 FIP
Headlining piece of the Trevor Bauer trade, Allen was a top 100 MLBPipeline prospect at the time of his acquisition. Allen had a great MLB debut (7.0 shutout innings vs Milwaukee), but struggled in many of his other 2019 appearances in both MLB and Triple-A.
Aaron Bracho, SS (Age 18)
2019 (R): 137 PA, .296/.416/.593, 6 HR, 4 SB, 16.8 BB%, 15.3 K%, 162 wRC+
2019 (A-): 32 PA, .222/.344/.481, 2 HR, 0 SB, 15.6 BB%, 25.0 K%, 141 wRC+
Injury kept him from debuting in 2018, but the DR native made up for it in 2019, rebuilding his hype by posting incredible numbers in the AZL and earning a promotion to Mahoning Valley.
Bobby Bradley, 1B (Age 23)
2019 (AAA): 453 PA, .264/.344/.567, 33 HR, 0 SB, 10.2 BB%, 33.8 K%, 125 wRC+
2019 (MLB): 49 PA, .178/.245/.356, 1 HR, 0 SB, 8.2 BB%, 40.8 K%, 51 wRC+
A career best 33 home runs at Triple-A earned the slugging first baseman his first cup of coffee with the Indians. He hit the hardest home run for the Tribe in the statcast era, but also whiffed in 40% of his at bats. Will need to cut down on the Ks if he wants to stay in the show.
Daniel Espino, RHP (Age 19)
2019 (R): 6 GS, 13.2 IP, 30.2 K%, 9.4 BB%, 1.98 ERA, 4.20 FIP
2019 (A-): 3 GS, 10.0 IP, 40.0 K%, 11.1 BB%, 6.30 ERA, 2.60 FIP
2019 first-round pick struck out a third of the batters he faced in Rookie ball and only got more deadly in Low-A as a 19-year-old. Fastball sits in upper 90s, occasionally touching triple digits. He. Is. 19.
Scott Moss, LHP (Age 25)
2019 (AA): 22 GS, 112.0 IP, 28.7 K%, 13.1 BB%, 3.13 ERA, 3.41 FIP
2019 (AAA): 4 GS, 18.2 IP, 30.3 K%, 10.5 BB%, 1.93 ERA, 3.14 FIP
Acquired from the Reds in the Trevor Bauer trade, Moss put up career-best strikeout numbers in 2019 and finished the season in Triple-A. Depending on injuries, he could be a spot starter for the Indians in 2020.
Brayan Rocchio, SS (Age 18)
2019 (A-): 295 PA, .250/.310/.373, 5 HR, 14 SB, 6.8 BB%, 13.6 K%, 107 wRC+
Venezuelan signed in 2017, held his own as one of the youngest players in the New York Penn League in 2019 while improving his walk rate and power.
Gabriel Rodriguez, SS (Age 17)
2019 (DSL): 170 PA, .238/.335/.406, 3 HR, 3 SB, 8.8 BB%, 15.9 K%, 106 wRC+
2019 (R): 73 PA, .215/.288/.262, 0 HR, 1 SB, 5.5 BB%, 30.1 K%, 51 wRC+
The top Indians international signing from 2018, Rodriguez performed admirably in his DSL debut at 17 years old, earning a late season promotion to the Arizona Rookie League.
Who should bethe No. 10 Indians prospect?
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