Who will be the TBLA community's #5 prospect heading into 2013?
Joc Pederson was the clear cut #4 Dodger prospect of the TBLA community, giving us a top quartet of Yasiel Puig, Zach Lee, Corey Seager, and Pederson. Having only one pitching prospect in the top 4 is quite a change from years past as those lists have been mostly dominated by hurlers.
Now as we move on to #5, feel free to throw out more suggestions as to who should be added to the list of candidates, keeping in mind that there were several players who are still considered "prospects" even though they spent time in Los Angeles in 2012.
As always, use this thread for discussion purposes and do your voting here in this post.
Here are the candidates for the TBLA #5 prospect:
Chris Reed - LHP (22.5 years old) - The 2011 first round pick out of Stanford was limited to just 70.1 frames during his first full season due to blisters and shoulder soreness, and from May on he never threw more than 4 innings in any start. That being said the closer turned starter excelled in the California League with a 3.09 ERA and a 9.8 K/9, which earned him a promotion to AA at the beginning of June. His numbers declined in the more advanced Southern league to a 4.84 ERA and a 7.4 K/9, and after the season Chris was sent to the AFL where he struggled with control and had a 7.20 ERA despite 12 K's in 10 innings. Numbers aside Reed has a excellent fastball/slider combination from the left side, and he's working hard on his changeup to give him a solid 3-pitch mix. He also a cutter that he'll use on occasion.
Chris Withrow - RHP (23.5 years old) - 2012 was Withrow's 4th stint in AA, and while he continued to show great pure stuff, his control again caused problems as he issued too many walks. After an injured pectoral muscle caused Withrow to miss most of June, the Dodgers moved him to the bullpen upon his return to action and the move seemed to pay off in the short term as he had a 3.28 ERA as a reliever with a .188 batting average against. It's uncertain what his long term role will be, and while he's obviously more valuable in the rotation, his mid 90's fastball, plus curveball, slider, and changeup would also play great as a reliever as long as he can limit his walks. Withrow is on the 40 man roster if healthy could be in the Dodgers 2013 plans.
Onelkis Garica - LHP (23.25 years old) - The Dodgers 2012 3rd round pick has had an interesting path to professional baseball, but in his limited time so far with the Dodgers he's shown why he initially was asking for big money. He only has 4 professional appearances to his credit so far, including one in the Southern League playoffs and two in the AFL, but so far he's only allowed 1 run and has racked up quite a few K's. Thanks to an interview with Chad Moriyama last week, we learned that Garcia possesses a "four-seam fastball, two-seam fastball, sinker, a curve, which he uses a lot, and his change-up is developing. He says he doesn’t use it a lot but it’s coming along." In his pre-draft report from Baseball America, however, they suggested that his low 90's fastball and hard curveball are his only quality pitches, and that a lack of a true 3rd pitch might force him to the bullpen.
Matt Magill - RHP (23 years old) - Magill's success in 2012 was one of the biggest surprises for the Dodgers. The Simi Valley native led the Southern League in strikeouts with 168 (which represented a 10.35 K/9), and his FIP was a solid 2.93. While his velocity isn't consistent and has dropped into the high 80's in the past, recent scouting reports had him as high as 94 mph and that is made even better by his ability to pinpoint his pitches. He also significantly improved his changeup over the last year, and it's been said that he has a new-found confidence that has helped him as well. Most scouts still don't think his pure stuff will make him a top or even a middle of the rotation guy in the big leagues, but they seem to think he'll eventually be a useful major league arm.
Please use this post as the discussion thread, and cast your actual vote in this prospect voting post. For those of you who don't remember from last year, having the voting in a separate post makes it easier for me to count up the results.