With the 2013 minor league seasons wrapped up, let’s look at the top offensive performances of the Reds minor league prospects. The data below is from baseball-reference.com.
The table summarizes the top 25 Reds minor league performers as ranked by OPS plus 5 additional players worth noting. The admittedly arbitrary cutoff that I used was players age 25 and below with at least 130 plate appearances. The level indicates the highest minor league level a player attained during the season. The position column indicates which position the player fielded the most. XBH is short-hand for extra-base hits.
At the top of the list is Phillip Ervin, the Reds first round draft pick in the 2013 draft. He signed quickly, and played both centerfield and rightfield mostly at Billings before a late season promotion to Dayton. Ervin hit very well in 200 plate appearances, displaying power, speed, and good control of the strike zone. It will be interesting to see how quickly the Reds decide to move him through the system.
Jesse Winker (1st round, 2012 draft) played leftfield for the Dayton Dragons all year and is a year younger than Ervin. He posted solid numbers across the board and should start the year in Bakersfield next year.
Seth Mejias-Brean (8th round, 2012 draft) also had a great year for Dayton (all but three of his games), splitting time between 1st base and 3rd base. Thirty-six of his extra base hits were doubles.
Kevin Garcia is a product of the Reds Dominican Summer League. Garcia has a .380 on-base percentage in 547 plate appearances over the past two seasons.
Rounding out the top of is 2012 17th round draft pick, Jose Ortiz. Ortiz has flashed power early in his professional career, hitting 28 extra base hits in 233 plate appearances.
There are two players who walked more than they struck out in 2013. Logan Uxa was drafted in the 32 round of the 2013 draft and played most of the season in Arizona except for a 3 game stint with the Bakersfield Blaze. Uxa had 16 extra-base hits in 154 at-bats, though only one of those hits was a homerun. Avain Rachal was a 22nd round pick from the 2012 draft and spent the entire 2013 season with Billings. He led all Reds minor leaguers with 18% of his plate appearances resulting in walks.
The bottom five on the list are noteworthy even though they fell out of the top 25 statistically. Kevin Franklin and Cory Thompson were drafted in the 2nd and 5th rounds of the 2013 draft, respectively. They signed quickly and played a lot of games (for June draftees.) Ryan LaMarre, Henry Rodriguez, and Billy Hamilton are players who could still provide impact at the major league level. And given the way he’s played in his September callup, Hamilton has a shot to make the Reds 2013 playoff roster.