shortsavage wrote:I called into mlb radio's Around the Minors this morning and asked Jonathan Mayo and Lisa Winston what they need to see out of a player before they consider him to be an elite prospect.
They agreed that it usually takes about a year of minor league experience before a draft pick can be considered elite. But said there are definite cases where a guy joins the league already with elite prospect status (like Justin Upton, Cameron Maybin, and Evan Longoria). We didn't get to pitchers, but I recall Jim Callis saying that Andrew Miller is already a top 20 prospect in his books, so that's elite in my mind.
This said, I don't see how you can say there is no doubt that Phillip Hughes is a better keeper than Andrew Miller. Hughes was ranked #39 by Baseball America entering the season. Has he really climbed so far up the rankings that he has distanced himself that much from a guy who will likely enter 2007 as one of Baseball America's top 25 prospects?
Simply, yes, he has. He'll be a top 10-12 prospect entering the next season. With the graduations of prospects who were ahead of him in 2006 and his ridiculous performance this season, it's a no-brainer he has shot up to top 10. He is 8 on my list, though that should fluctuate a bit within some of the "actual" lists (BA, Analysts, MiLB). Lets look at Hughes' season.
He started the year as a 19 year old at A+ Tampa and dominated. He didn't turn 20 until late-June, long after he had been dominating at AA. Not only are his basic stats great (a combined 2.32 ERA, 154 Ks), but every stat any scout "guru" looks at is great, too:
K/9: 10.19 - excellent
BB/9: 2.18 - absurd for a 20 year old with power stuff
H/9: 5.96 - ....
K/BB: 4.67 - speechless
GB:FB: 168:95... which is a ridiculous GB% of 64%. That would be #1 (or 2) in all of ML baseball this season.
Just look at those stats. And to think he's done this at a very young age for his level. His per 9 stats are unparalleled, his BAA is unreal, and, even more impressive, for a power/K pitcher, his HR/9 is ludicrously low and his GB% is awesome. He is the best pitching prospect in all of baseball, hands down.