This is part two of a look back at my Preseason Top 41 Prospects list. THIS IS NOT A RE-RANKING. The rankings were done last January.
Part one, on players #36-41 is here.
#31 – Brad Marquez
What I Thought: The Texas Tech WR had elite speed.
Reality: A quad injury has kept him out for two weeks.
The plan here is odd. The 19-year old Marquez will play with Kingsport until August and then head back to campus. While his baseball peers are finishing up their seasons, and then heading to instructional league for further coaching, Marquez will be banging helmets in the Big 12. Then, when his Mets peers report to spring training next spring, Marquez will be in Lubbock at spring practice and won’t report until May. He’ll turn 20 in December. That’s a lot of baseball reps lost to football at a crucial age. Without coming to Spring Training 2013 and playing in April and May, I just do not see Marquez getting the necessary reps to learn the baseball skills to actually be an impact big leaguer.
#32 – Cory Vaughn
What I Thought: Vaughn looks like a big leaguer, but had a lot of work to do to reach the level of average right-field regular. He showed some patience in 2011, but I was concerned that 1. he did not drive the ball as much as I was expecting in Savannah, and 2. his average cratered to .219 in St. Lucie.
Reality: His problems hitting for average continued, but his walk and strikeout rates are back to where they were in Savannah in 2011. The 23-year old might be the streakiest prospect in the system. After a .192/.340/.397 line in 23 games in June, he’s off to a .382/.447/.765 starts with eight extra-base hits in nine games in July.
#33 – Erik Goeddel
What I Thought: A guy who struggled with a shoulder injury and command in 2011, but had the potential to be a mid-rotation starter if he rediscovered his velocity.
Reality: The command is not there and the velocity might never return to his UCLA heyday. Top prospects don’t give up 10 hits per nine with a K/BB under two in advanced-A.
#34 – Jack Leathersich
What I Thought: He profiled as a left-handed middle reliever in the big leagues.
Reality: The Mets agreed with me and moved him to the bullpen for Savannah to start the year. His missions under pitching coach Frank Viola was cleaning up and repeating his delivery better and improving his curveball. He still missed bats by the box-load. There were nights I could not figure out how he was doing it. His fastball was a little better than average maybe, sitting around 91 mph, sometimes more, sometimes less. The curve improved over his time in Savannah. And yet, it just seemed like hitters sometimes could not see the baseball. He hides the ball relatively well in his delivery.
In St. Lucie his ERA is up and his walk-rate and hit rates are up.
Stock: Holding. There’s not enough pure stuff to go nuts on a bullpen arm.
#35 – Logan Verrett
What I Thought: The 2011 third-round pick out of Baylor had a chance to profile as a back-end starter.
Reality: He still might. Even after a shoulder strain that kept him out almost two months, the numbers are there for Verrett. Although he touched 93 earlier this year, he worked at 90-91 more regularly. Recently, scouts have told me he’s been more 88-91 a lot with his fastball. The fastball command has come and gone at times. His slider is ok.
Stock: Similar. He came into the year with a chance to pitch at the back end of the rotation. He’s done what he needs to do in the sense that he’s taken a step in that direction, but his top tier projections have not budged.