Updated M’s Prospect List; PCL Coaching Staffs

An updated Seattle Mariners Top Prospect List was released today, this one from Baseball Prospectus. It reflects the new-look farm system, with four of the top six players recently acquired via trades.

Baseball Prospectus is a subscription site, so you need a password to see their full list with the scouting reports on all of the players which goes beyond an organization top ten. But I will share their ranking of the Top Ten:

  1. Justus Sheffield, LHP
  2. Jarred Kelenic, OF
  3. Evan White, 1B
  4. Justin Dunn, RHP
  5. Logan Gilbert, RHP
  6. Erik Swanson, RHP
  7. Kyle Lewis, OF
  8. Julio Rodriguez, OF
  9. Sam Carlson, RHP
  10. Braden Bishop, OF

From the top ten, Sheffield, Swanson and Bishop are the most likely to start the season with Tacoma, with hopefully White, Dunn, and Lewis coming sometime during the season. That’s all just speculation on my part – we don’t really know if Jerry Dipoto will feel pressure to promote prospects quickly, as previous Mariners GMs have during non-contending major league seasons. It has been a few years since this has been a consideration.

Here’s a link to the complete article if you are a subscriber. If you like to follow prospects from around the minors, Baseball Prospectus is a valuable subscription. You get updates on prospect performances 3-4 times a week during the season, and some occasionally nifty writing as well. For example, this post came complete with an introductory Death Cab For Cutie lyric written in 2001 (when the M’s were at their peak) that somehow capsulizes the comfort and despair that BP believes Mariners fans will feel in 2019. Additionally, while I am not a fantasy baseball player, I’m told that BP is an excellent resource for that.

OK, back on topic now. Lots of PCL news below.

We anticipate an announcement from the Mariners any day now on the 2019 Tacoma Rainiers Turn Back The Clock Coaching Staff. In the meantime, teams around the PCL are naming their managers and coaching staffs for the approaching season.

Rainiers division rival Fresno – now a Washington Nationals affiliate – will be led by former PCL player and major league catcher Randy Knorr. The pitching coach will be ex-Rainiers and former M’s pitcher and minor league coach Brad Holman.

Another division rival has a new skipper: minor league baseball lifer Chris Cron will manage the Reno Aces this season, and is possibly going to have his son Kevin Cron as his cleanup hitter.

Albuquerque brings back Glenallen Hill for his fifth season at the helm of the Isotopes.

On the other side of the league, the Nashville Sounds staff includes former Rainiers and Mariners hitting coach Howard Johnson, along with former Cy Young Award winner (and PCL player) Eric Gagne. PCL veteran Jason Wood returns as manager of the Texas Rangers affiliate.

Omaha is standing pat with its coaching staff, once again led by skipper Brian Poldberg.

Links:

  • Get ready for the Ichiro comeback, which will begin in spring training next month. Larry Stone has a column that basically says, why not?
  • Seattle Times writer Ryan Divish has an analysis of the Yusei Kikuchi signing, which on the surface does not appear to fit the Mariners rebuilding plan… or does it?
  • The Mariners have signed right-handed pitcher Aaron Northcraft to a minor league contract. He has Triple-A experience with El Paso, but has not pitched in affiliated ball since 2016. He reportedly has been throwing well in the Venezuelan Winter League.

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