#41 Antonio Arias, CF, NYY – Not many 18 year olds make a debut in Major League Baseball, but this one did, thanks in part to his elite defense. Don’t expect to see him up in New York again anytime soon – he was pressed into duty due to many injuries and sub-par play. In all likelihood Arias will be sent back to Charleston or Trenton to begin the 2018 campaign and work on getting his sweet plus swing back in order (Contact – 60). Much has already been made of his defense in centerfield as well as his base running so the Yankees are hoping he can add to his offensive skills as he continues to develop.
#42 José Navarro, 2B, NYM – He doesn’t run well or play defense yet, but damn you can dream on these hitting tools. He’s a 60/75/60/60/70 guy who is in theory capable of playing the infield. He was drafted in Round 2 of the 2017 MLB draft at pick #47 overall and he’s still 19 and raw. The range at 2B is above average (65), but all other aspects of his defense still need plenty of seasoning – which he’ll be sure to get as he works his way through the minors. The statistics are irrelevant at this point, and he’ll likely come back to rejoin one of the Mets low minor league affiliates in 2018.
#43 Lazaro Leyva, RHP, BAL – Leyva already has three above average offerings as well as a true plus pitch in the fastball (65/70). His main struggle at AA Bowie last season was the homerun ball (17). His overall line of 3.76 ERA, 133K: 51BB with a 1.19 WHIP was quite stellar. It’s assumed that he’ll get a shot at AAA to open the 2018 season with the ability to reach the Baltimore if everything breaks right for the 22 year old.
#44 Pedro A. Gonzalez, SS, COL – Pedro Gonzalez is another one of the numerous overlooked Rockies prospects. He doesn’t have over-the-wall, home run type power, but I’ll be damned if he can’t put the bat to the ball and find the gaps. Already a deft defender he put up a .320/.352/.474 line at Modesto in 2017. His plus contact grade (60) and plus approach (Eye – 70) assure him of getting every opportunity to show what he’s made of as he triple-slashes his way through the Rockies system.
#45 Steve Bartlett, RHP, MIN – Stevie Bee they call him, or at least I hope they do. Maybe they want to re-nickname him Stevie K though, because as he harnesses the power of his three plus pitches (Fastball 65/65, Slider 50/70, Curveball 50/75) with his Stuff (70) and Movement (60) he’s going to have the potential to mold himself into a top-of-the-rotation ace with a capital A. Barlett also has the ability to keep going through the order 3 and even 4 times with his stamina (80). He’s still going to require some time to hone his craft at AAA Rochester, but you may see him in Minnesota sooner than later.