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George Valera is our No. 6 Guardians prospect. Who should be No. 7?

Valera possesses tremendous talent, but can he stay healthy and be reliable?

Cleveland Guardians Photo Day Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Outfielder George Valera is our No. 6 prospect, earning 44% of the vote on Tuesday and beating out the competition by over 50 votes.

Like overall No. 3 prospect Brayan Rocchio, Velera was a member of Cleveland’s vaunted 2017 international signing class.

Valera impressed in limited action his first three years in the system, showcasing a strong eye at the plate and prodigious power potential. It was in his full-season debut in 2021 that he really took the next step, walking over 20% of the time while blasting 16 home runs with an elite 164 wRC+ at High-A, earning a midseason promotion to Double-A and an invite to the Futures Game.

Before his 2022 season, Valera was named the top prospect in the system by Covering the Corner readers and he looked like he was living up to the hype, slashing .264/.367/.470 at Double-A with 15 home runs and earning another promotion to Triple-A.

Valera’s progress has stalled since he’s hit Triple-A, however. He has maintained a solid walk rate, which was 16% last season, but injuries have slowed him down, whether it’s been his bothersome wrist, his twice-broken hamate or other small nagging issues like a hamstrings or oblique injuries. He struggled to stay on the field in 2023 in more ways than one, earning a suspension after making contact with an umpire following a confrontation at the plate with an opposing team’s catcher.

Valera is still just 23 years old and is one year removed from bashing 24 home runs, so he’s far from a lost cause, but a few other outfielders in the system have started to outshine him. It’ll be up to Valera whether he can seize 2024 and recapture some of his luster.

Joey Cantillo, LHP (Age 24)

2023 (AA): 24.1 IP, 6 GS, 36.1 K%, 14.4 BB%, 1.85 ERA, 3.50 FIP
2023 (AAA): 195.0 IP, 20 GS, 26.1 K%, 12.9 BB%, 4.64 ERA, 5.29 FIP

Has transformed himself from crafty soft-tosser to flamethrowing southpaw. Had his first healthy season with Cleveland in 2023 and made the Futures Game.

Jaison Chourio, OF (Age 18)

2023 (CPX): 189 PA, .349/.476/.463, 1 HR, 19 SB, 20.1 BB%, 19.6 K%, 147 wRC+
2023 (A): 42 PA, .200/.310/.229, 0 HR, 1 SB, 14.3 BB%, 35.7 K%, 65 wRC+

Younger brother of top 3 overall prospect Jaxon, has showcased elite eye, speed and contact as he advanced to full season in his age-18 season.

Alex Clemmey, LHP (Age 18)

2023: Second round pick in the 2023 MLB Draft.

Standing 6-foot-6 with a 99 mph fastball and a filthy curveball, Clemmey had one of the most electric arms of all high school prep prospects for 2023, but lacks command.

Welbyn Francisca, SS (Age 17)

2023 (DSL): 179 PA, .316/.419/.500, 3 HR, 11 SB, 13.4 BB%, 19.6 K%, 144 wRC+

The top-rated international signing by Cleveland in 2022, Francisca impressed in his professional debut in the Dominican Summer League.

Angel Martinez, SS (Age 22)

2023 (AA): 437 PA, .245/.321/.392, 11 HR, 10 SB, 8.5 BB%, 19.0 K%, 96 wRC+
2023 (AAA): 154 PA, .268/.320/.401, 3 HR, 1 SB, 6.5 BB% 23.4 K%, 78 wRC+

A top international signing in 2018, Martinez has been one of the team’s best international prospects as a middle infielder, although he had a down year in 2023.

Johnathan Rodriguez, OF (Age 24)

2023 (AA): 363 PA, .289/.364/.375, 18 HR, 3 SB, 9.4 BB%, 26.7 K%, 137 wRC+
2023 (AAA): 202 PA, .280/.376/.375, 11 HR, 0 SB, 12.4 BB%, 32.7 K%, 131 wRC+

Rodriguez has been above average every season, but was the best hitter out of all full-season players in Cleveland’s MiLB system in 2023 and was added to the 40-man roster.

Ralphy Velasquez, C (Age 18)

2023 (CPX): 28 PA, .348/.393/.739, 2 HR, 1 SB, 10.7 BB%, 17.9 K%, 151 wRC+

Cleveland’s No. 1 draft pick in 2023. Velasquez has strong hit and power tools and showcased them in a limited sample size at the complex league.


Who should be the No. 7 Cleveland Guardians prospect?

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    Joey Cantillo
    (108 votes)
  • 10%
    Jaison Chourio
    (34 votes)
  • 4%
    Alex Clemmey
    (13 votes)
  • 3%
    Welbyn Francisca
    (11 votes)
  • 6%
    Angel Martinez
    (21 votes)
  • 23%
    Johnathan Rodriguez
    (73 votes)
  • 17%
    Ralphy Velasquez
    (54 votes)
314 votes total Vote Now