With all the prospects rankings basically released by now, it seems like a good time to put together a team of the highest upside players in the Blue Jays organization. A little bit of positional adjustments need to be made, but for the most part each position is taken by the player with the highest upside in the minor league system. Today we'll start with the four infielders, which contain no players close to the major leagues, but multiple players with high ceilings.
First Base- L.B. Dantzler
You could pick any of Dantzler, Rowdy Tellez, and Matt Dean for this position, but Dantzler is the player that showed his upside at the highest level of the minor leagues of the three. The 22-year-old was drafted during the most recent draft in the 14th round out of the University of South Carolina. He was quickly sent to Vancouver where he hit .302/.385/.504 with nine home runs in 59 games. He'll turn 23 in May so there's a good chance he ends 2014 in Dunedin, although if he keeps up his torrid pace, New Hampshire isn't completely out of the question. You can see the pop in his bat in the video below:
Second Base- Franklin Barreto
The Venezuelan 17-year-old has only played shortstop since signing with the Blue Jays, but he's only 5'9" and doesn't have the greatest footwork, so he really could end up anywhere on the diamond. He split time between the GCL and Bluefield in 2013 hitting well in the former, but not that great in the latter. There's a ton of time for Barreto to improve both offensively and defensively, but scouts already like what they see. Keith Law ranked Barreto 8th in his top 10 and said:
If Franklin Barreto stays at shortstop, which most scouts seem to think he will, he has a chance to be an impact guy with the bat.
Here's how Barreto looks at the plate:
Shortstop- Dawel Lugo
The 19-year-old Dominican is the other high-ceiling shortstop prospect with Barreto and stands a little taller at 6'0'. The right-handed hitter split time between Bluefield and Vancouver in 2013 putting up a line of .284/.301/.437 with seven home runs. It seems opinions are split on whether Lugo can stay at shortstop or not, but he's shown to be a great hitter, which is a good sign going forward. Here's a bit of his defence:
Third Base- Mitch Nay
The 20-year-old right-handed hitter spent all of 2013 in Bluefield, plus a playoff appearance for Vancouver playing third base and hitting .300/.364/.426 with six home runs in Bluefield and was the 'sexy' position player prospect for the Blue Jays in the rankings this offseason. There's a chance Nay is moved to first base eventually, like what the team did with Matt Dean, but it seems he'll get another season to show what he's got at the hot corner. If Nay can keep hitting, there's no reason not to expect him to move quickly through the low minors. Here's Nay taking some hacks last spring:
Is there any positions where you folks would have a different player? Let us know!