Today marks the beginning of our Oakland A’s top-50 prospects list countdown for the 2018 season. Over the next few months, we will be releasing scouting reports of each prospect, starting from 50 and moving up the list. If the A’s wind-up making a number of trades this off-season that impact this prospect list, we will release the original list alongside a revised version.
This is the 12th year that we have released a top-50 prospects list and determining this list is never easy. We strongly considered more than 80 players for this list and, undoubtedly, there will be players who just missed this list who will make us look foolish next season for leaving them off. At the end of our scouting report series, we will release a list of players who just missed making this ranking.
We are often asked about our methodology in choosing these prospects and their ranking order. It is, without question, the most difficult task we undertake each year. Guessing the future value of a player is a subjective and unscientific proposition, at best. That being said, it is something that we take very seriously and put a lot of time and effort into.
We base our evaluations on the following criteria: 1) talent/ceiling (does this player have an unusual set of talents that, should he reach his maximum potential, would allow him to be a star?); 2) chances of having a big league career (is this player a future major league regular?) 3) projection (is this player likely to reach his maximum potential, whatever that potential may be?); 4) results on the field (did this player produce numbers that indicate he will have future success?); 5) age relative to level (did this player compete against age-appropriate competition last season and is he still young enough to have a long career in the big leagues?); 6) make-up (does this player project the temperament, intelligence and work ethic to succeed on a big stage?); 7) position (a middle infielder, centerfielder or catcher might be considered more valuable in the long run than a corner outfielder or infielder; same goes for a potential starting pitcher as opposed to a reliever).
Our assessments for all of these players are borne out of discussions throughout the season with baseball executives, scouts, players and other media members, as well as our staff’s own personal observations of the players being analyzed, where we have had opportunities to watch them play on numerous occasions.
As each player’s profile is released, we will update the list below and will include hyperlinks to each of their scouting reports, so bookmark this page.
We hope you enjoy the series!
Oakland A’s 2018 top-50 prospects
46. Oscar Tovar, RHP
47. Ryan Gridley, IF
49. Eli White, SS/CF
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