LOD’s 2019 Offseason Top Prospects: Cincinnati Reds #5-#1
Here at Legends on Deck our passion is prospects and the offseason presents an outstanding opportunity for us to showcase some of baseball’s top up and comers. Throughout the offseason, we will be bringing you the top ten prospects from all 30 organizations. We will start with the Arizona Diamondbacks and work our way alphabetically all the way through the Washington Nationals. This series is the opinion of Jake Berry, Senior Editor at Legends on Deck and does not reflect any official MLB rankings.
#5 – RHP Tony Santillan
2019 Opening Day Age: 21 ETA: 2020 Top Future: FB
2018 Stats (High-A/Double-A): 3.08 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 134 SO, 38 BB
I’m more excited about the hard throwing righty than most thanks to a high floor. While he is not necessarily a new name on the prospect scene, he is certainly doing a lot to put himself more on the radar. The fastball lives in the high 90’s and he backs it up with that changeup I love so much. The Fort Worth, Texas native faced more batters than ever in 2018 and had his best season to date. He should be a solid back of the rotation piece on the next good Reds team.
#4 – RHP Hunter Greene
2019 Opening Day Age: 19 ETA: 2022 Top Future Pitch: FB
2018 Stats (Single-A): 4.48 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 89 SO, 23 BB
Pick 1.2 in the 2017 draft, Greene posses a true 80 grade fastball that hits triple digits time and time again while being thrown with extreme precision. His top secondary is the slider which is a nice change of pace from the fastball, especially until the changeup fully develops. That change should be complete in no time as he focuses more on pitching instead of splitting time in the field and on the mound. While his 2018 was cut a little bit short due to an elbow injury, Greene didn’t undergo TJ. It sounds like he may be back to throwing normally fairly soon.
#3 – 3B Jonathan India
2019 Opening Day Age: 22 ETA: 2020 Top Future Tool: Hit
2018 Stats (Rookie/Single-A): .280/.340/.433, 6 HR, 23 RBI, 6 SB
The University of Florida product was the fifth overall pick in the 2018 draft and probably one of the more complete players. Offensively, he is well rounded. A strong, consistent hit tool with average power and above average speed make India one of the more advanced bats from his draft class. He was a rather disciplined hitter in his college days, but struck out quite a bit in his pro debut against some competition that certainly didn’t have the background he does. Defensively, he has a good enough arm and footwork to stay at the hot corner.
#2 – OF Taylor Trammell
2019 Opening Day Age: 21 ETA: 2020 Top Future Tool: Run
2018 Stats (High-A): .277/.375/.406, 8 HR, 41 RBI, 25 SB
Originally viewed as an on base approach guy, Trammell is proving that he doesn’t have to rely on his speed to be a productive player, although that 70 speed doesn’t hurt. He slugged a respectable .406 as a 20 year old in a tough Florida State League in 2018 and more power should come to the athletic frame. He already proved in the Futures Game, along with almost everyone else on both rosters, that he will have no problem crushing the Juiced MLB balls. I’m comfortable projecting him with a 15/25 floor, 20/30 ceiling.
#1 – INF Nick Senzel
2019 Opening Day Age: 23 ETA: 2019 Top Future Tool: Hit
2018 Stats (Triple-A): 171 AB, .310/.378/.509, 6 HR, 25 RBI, 8 SB
Consistent barrel to ball skills and plus bat speed make Senzel my favorite prospect in this system. He had a tough go of it on the injury front in 2018, but I don’t think that will effect his ETA. As it stands today, Senzel is ready to be a major league third baseman, but they played him more at second base in 2018 prior to the injury. Perhaps this is a move toward the future with another good third baseman in India waiting in the wings.
Featured Image: Tony Santillan – Courtesy of Mathew Carper/Legends On Deck