Baseball Card Prospecting Update: Hot Starts

Baseball Card Prospecting Update: Hot Starts

As the name of the article suggests, the theme of the latest Baseball Card Prospecting Update is hot starts. Below are 11 prospects that have stood out during the first few weeks of the 2011 MiLB season. Some are more established prospects like Mike Trout and Jenrry Mejia, while others are prospects looking to piece together a breakout campaign like Bryce Brentz and Tim Wheeler.

Bear in mind that this is just a small sampling of stats. Most position players have yet to top 30 plate appearances, while most pitchers have yet to take the mound for a 3rd time. Never the less, in the world of prospecting, there's no such as thing as too early a start or too few stats.

2009BOWMANTROUT 345 ImageMike Trout, 19, Los Angeles Angels OF Image(AA) - The game's premier prospect has already slugged 3 home runs. The only question scouts had coming into 2011 was whether or not the 5-tooler could develop power. If this power surge should sustain, there's an outside chance we see Trout in the Angels outfield by the tail end of the 2011 season. Trout's premier prospect card is his 2009 Bowman Chrome auto.

Bryce Brentz, 22, Boston Red Sox OF Image (A) - The Red Sox 2010 sandwich pick (36th overall) has gotten out of the gate fast. Through 7 games, Brentz is batting .441 with 2 HR and 12 RBI's. The 22-year old outfielder was one of the most over-dissected players in the 2010 MLB draft, but has thus far proven his doubters wrong with his hot start. Brentz's premier prospect card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome Draft auto.

Jenrry Mejia, 21, New York Mets SP Image (AAA) - Baseball America's #1 Mets prospect has started the 2011 season in style. Through his first two starts, Mejia has yet to surrender a single run. For some reason it feels like Mets prospects are older than they seem, as Mejia won't turn 22 until December. Jenrry's top chase card is his 2010 Topps Chrome auto.

2010BOWMAN POMERANZ ImageDrew Pomeranz, 22, Cleveland Indians SP Image (A) - Through 2 starts, the 5th overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft has yet to surrender a run. The talented lefty has also struck out an impressive 17 batters in just 11 innings of work. Pomeranz's best prospect card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome auto.

Matt Harvey, 22, New York Mets SP Image (A) - The Mets other noteworthy young hurler is 2-0 with 17 strikeouts in 2 starts. Like fellow Mets farmhand Jenrry Mejia, Harvey has yet to surrender a single run on the season. There's no doubt he has the stuff, the big question is whether or not he can handle the 200 inning work load expected of a starting pitcher. Harvey's premier prospect card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome Draft auto.

Anthony Rizzo, 21, San Diego Padres 1B Image (AAA) - Rizzo and SP Casey Kelly were the two blue chip prospects the Padres received in the Adrian Gonzalez trade. Thus far, the 21-year old first baseman hasn't disappointed, hitting .333 with 2 HR and 11 RBI's. It's also worth noting that Rizzo is one of the youngest players in AAA. Rizzo's best card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome auto.

Joe Benson, 23, Minnesota Twins OF Image (AA) - The 23-year old five-tooler is part of a stacked crop of Twins outfield prospects (Aaron Hicks, Ben Revere, Max Kepler, Oswaldo Arcia, Angel Morales, Eddie Rosario, Rene Tosoni). Through 8 games Benson is batting .405 with 1 HR, 9 RBI's and 3 SB. Benson's two best cards are his 2007 Bowman Heritage and 2007 Bowman Sterling autos.2010BOWMAN BJACKS Image

Brett Jackson, 22, Chicago Cubs OF Image (AA) - When the Cubs inexplicably sent SP Chris Archer and SS Hak-Ju Lee to the Rays in exchange for Matt Garza, they subtracted two of the top five prospects from their system. Thankfully, OF Brett Jackson appears ready to take the next step. Through 7 games B-Jack is batting .480 with 1 HR, 7 RBI, 10 R and 4 SB. He reminds me of Mike Trout in many ways. Jackson's best card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome auto.

Paul Goldschmidt, 23, Arizona Diamondbacks 1B Image (AA) - The 23-year old first baseman might have the most raw power of any prospect in baseball. Through 7 games he has cleared the fences 5 times. In 2010, Goldschmidt slugged 35 home runs in single A. Paul is the definition of a power hitting first baseman, bringing 245 pounds to the plate with each at bat. Goldschmidt's best card is his 2010 Bowman Platinum auto.

Jaff Decker, 21, San Diego Padres OF Image (A) - For some reason Decker reminds me of a right field version of John Kruk. Decker was considered one of the best pure hitters in the 2009 draft and is living up to that billing thus far. Through 8 games, Jaff is hitting .379 with 2 HR, 11 RBI and 2 SB. Decker's top chase card is his 2010 Bowman Chrome auto, which was a redemption.

Tim Wheeler, 21, Colorado Rockies OF Image (A) - Since being taken in the first round of 2009 draft, Wheeler has been a disappointment. That may very well be changing in 2011, as the CF prospect is hitting .346 with 3 HR, 10 RBI and 2 SB through his first 7 games. Tim's top trading card is his 2009 Bowman Chrome auto.

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Brett is a former contributor to The Cardboard Connection.

User Comments

  1. Good article Brett…thanks!

  2. I know it’s beyond early, but if you want to day dream about the possibilities, Jordan “I’m not Magic Johnson” Swagerty has not allowed a run or a walk in 13 innings so far, and in his last outing, stuck out nine in seven innings. Sure, it’s low-A ball, but it’s fun to imagine if he keeps it up, some people may take panini up on replacing those Magic Johnson error autos.

  3. @amorphous mess: agreed

  4. Great article. I love articles like this because it takes some of the homework out of prospecting. Thanks!

  5. Hello!
    My name is James Kennedy, and I am the new prospect writer at Atlanta Sports Cards. we do a Thursday Hot Sheet.

    and a minor league daily update/card analysis- in fact this site published our 2010 bowman chrome article!

    please stop by and feel free to publish any of the articles! its an honor that a great site like CBC would use one of our articles! Happy Collecting!

    James Kennedy

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