2016 Top Shortstop Prospects

The list of the 2016 shortstop prospects features six (6) guys who were first round draft picks and some of the fastest rising prospects in the game.

2016 Top Shortstop Prospects

1

Corey Seager

Position: SS/3B Age: 21 DOB: 04/27/1994 Bats: L Throws: R Height: 6' 4" Weight: 215 lb. Drafted: 2012, 1st (18) - LAD

Scouting Grades: Hit: 70 | Power: 55 | Run: 45 | Arm: 60 | Field: 50 | Overall: 70

#Dodgers Corey Seager ranks as the top SS prospect for 2016

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

While sometimes comparing a prospect to an All-Star can be a bit unfair but it's hard to not compare him to his older brother, All-Star Kyle Seager, as he shows signs of being even better then his older brother since being drafted 18th overall in the 2012 Draft. Another name mentioned when talking about him is Carlos Correa as some have said he has a higher offensive ceiling than any current major league shortstop except for Correa.

Playing in the hitter friendly California League in 2014 he led the minors in hitting while being named league MVP at just 20 years old before following it up with an impressive 2015 that saw him spend time at Double-A and Triple-A before making his Major League debut. With most of last season spent at Triple-A he hit .293 in the Minors last season before showing he could be the opening day starter in Los Angeles this season by hitting .337 over 98 at bats in the Majors.

From the left side of the plate he has tremendous bat speed, strength and discipline with an ability to hit it to all sides of the yard with just a little knock that he can be a bit overly aggressive at times but not enough to prevent him from hitting for a high average with power to hit 25-30 home runs a season. With a strong arm and good instincts he seems to be set to be a regular in the Dodgers lineup although he currently is missing some time with a knee injury suffered during spring training.

2

Orlando Arcia

Position: SS Age: 21 DOB: 08/04/1994 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 0" Weight: 165 lb. Signed: Oct. 22, 2010 - MIL

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 45 | Run: 60 | Arm: 60 | Field: 65 | Overall: 65

#Brewers Orland Arcia ranks as the 2nd best SS prospect for 2016

sconniesportstalk.com

No matter how great of a defender someone is it's hard to get to excited about them until they show some signs of life at the plate and that is the case with him as he already was considered one of the better defensive shortstop prospects before a breakout 2015 with his bat. His performance in Double-A at the age of 20 years old saw him selected for the All-Star Futures Game and named as the Brewers organization's Player of the Year.

Defensively he has earned praise that he could be a Gold Glove winner as his natural ability at shortstop is clear to see with soft hands, great range and a strong arm. While he had been known for making solid contact he had a huge season in Double-A as he finished in the top five in six different offensive categories including a league-high 37 doubles as he started to show off his plus power potential.

He seems to have all the makings for a top of the order hitter and starting shortstop as he also stolen at least 20 bases in three straight seasons with his base stealing abilities likely to shine at all levels. Expect this 21-year old to start the season Triple-A and while he has spent a whole year at one level over each of the last three seasons an eventual Major League debut later this season wouldn't be a shock as he shows tremendous makeup and maturity beyond his years.

3

J.P. Crawford

Position: SS Age: 21 DOB: 01/11/1995 Bats: L Throws: R Height: 6' 2" Weight: 180 lb. Drafted: 2013, 1st (16) - PHI

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 45 | Run: 50 | Arm: 60 | Field: 65 | Overall: 65

#Phillies J.P. Crawford comes in at #3 on our SS top prospect list for 2016 #mlb

www.mcall.com

Since he entered high school he has had turned heads as he was named state freshman of the year at Lakewood HS in California and after his four years of high school were finished the Phillies selected him with the No. 16 pick in the 2013 Draft. Phillies have already had luck with one shortstop from California as longtime shortstop Jimmy Rollins became their everyday shortstop at the age of 21 years old back in 2000 and the cousin of Major League outfielder Carl Crawford may match that feat.

Despite having just average speed he has outstanding range with terrific hands and a strong arm to make him one of the better defensive shortstop prospects in all of baseball. His approach at the plate has continued to improve as he walked more than he struck out last season while hitting .288 on the year with most of it coming in Double-A. In 283 games he has hit just 18 home runs but the hope is over time he can hit for a little more power.

Just turning 21 in January he may not quite match Jimmy Rollins feat of being the starting shortstop in Philadelphia at the age of 21 but a possible late Major League debut this year may be possible this year. He did miss some time in the Arizona Fall League with a left thumb injury but it shouldn't prevent him from being back to his full health for this season that could see him start in Triple-A.

4

Dansby Swanson

Position: SS Age: 22 DOB: 02/11/1994 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 0" Weight: 190 lb. Drafted: 2015, 1st (1) - ARI

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 45 | Run: 60 | Arm: 55 | Field: 55 | Overall: 60

#Braves Dansby Swanson is the 4th best SS prospect for 2016 #mlb

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Known for being the first ever player to be selected with the overall No. 1 pick and traded the same year he was traded during the off season from the Arizona Diamondbacks to the Atlanta Braves in the Shelby Miller trade as the Braves have hopes for him to be their starting shortstop and an All-Star sooner than later.

Not only a plus hitter but an above average shortstop as well he should be able to stick at short as he has soft hands, quickness and a strong arm. While not having plus speed or plus power he does have some power and some base stealing abilities while his advanced approach at the plate should have him hit for a high average with a good on base percentage.

Considered the Braves top prospect this advanced hitter out of college will likely start this season at Double-A after hitting .289 with 11 extra base hits and 11 runs batted in during 22 games in Single-A short seasons. History has shown that highly drafted college hitters can go through the Minors in a quick fashion and he could be yet another as he recently turned 22 years old in February.

5

Trea Turner

Position: SS/2B Age: 22 DOB: 06/30/1993 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 1" Weight: 175 lb. Drafted: 2014, 1st (13) - SD

Scouting Grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 40 | Run: 75 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50 | Overall: 60

#Nationals Trea Turner is the 5th best SS prospect for 2016 #mlb

www.27outsbaseball.com

One of several players on this list to be included in a trade he was sent to the Nationals as the player to be named later in the Wil Myers trade after he was drafted out of NC State with the 13th overall pick in the 2014 Draft by the San Diego Padres. During a busy 2015 season he saw time with four different teams including making his Major League debut.

Off to a hot start in Double-A he was moved up to Triple-A Syracuse where he hit .353 in 48 games and he also shined at the All-Star Futures Game to have the Nationals decide to call him for the end of the season. In 27 games he didn't have overwhelming success but he showed he could hold his own at the plate and in the infield. Despite not having great power he does have a bit of an overly aggressive approach at the plate at times but he has improved on his mechanics and drives the ball to all sides of the field.

While his lack of power may cut down on extra-base hits his speed could help him quickly get to second after a single as his plus speed will have him a serious base stealing threat and also helps him have great range defensively. His arm is strong enough to play either position on the left side of the infield which could help him make the Opening Day roster this season and used at both SS and 3B before eventually being their everyday shortstop of the future.

6

Brendan Rodgers

Position: SS Age: 19 DOB: 08/09/1996 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 0" Weight: 180 lb. Drafted: 2015, 1st (3) - COL

Scouting Grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 55 | Run: 60 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50 | Overall: 60

#Rockies Brendan Rodgers comes in at 6 on our top 10 3B prospect list for 2016

www.milb.com

Would be hard to not have him on this list as this high schooler was drafted with the third overall pick in the 2015 Draft and signed for $5.5 million by the Rockies. He did have a nice start to his pro career at the Rookie-level Pioneer League but it was cut short with various leg injuries costing him playing time.

With great bat speed and power he has an easy swing from the right side of the plate while not having to be overly agressive with his swing which should allow him to hit for power while having a good average as well. Able to hit the ball to both sides of the field the hopes are one day he can become the next Troy Tulowitzki in Colorado.

With good speed and a solid arm he could end up playing either position on the left side of the infield as an above average shortstop or third baseman. While his position had people split he has soft hands and good instincts with a bat that could profile for either spot. Considered by some as the top prospect in last year's draft but falling to the third pick because of his age he was drafted behind two college shortstops but he may end up being the best of the bunch down the road.

7

Alex Bregman

Position: SS Age: 21 DOB: 03/30/1994 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 0" Weight: 180 lb. Drafted: 2015, 1st (2) - HOU

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 50 | Run: 50 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50 | Overall: 60

#Astros Alex Bregman slots in at the 7th best SS prospect for 2016

Bregman on the right (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Despite just promoting highly regarded shortstop Carlos Correa to the Major Leagues that same day the Astros didn't hesitate to draft him with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2015 Draft. Playing three years at LSU and establishing himself as one of the premier hitters in college he signed for $5.9 million and didn't waste anytime in earning a promotion to High Class A before the end of last year.

His swing from the right side of the plate is not the most appealing to the eyes but he has amazing bat speed and control of the strike zone with an ability to make great contact with the barrel of the bat. While not having plus power he does have some power to pull the ball and if he can add some more loft to his swing he could be a 15-20 home run guy in the Majors. His defensive ability is not as highly regarded as his bat be he does have a solid arm and instincts to stick at the shortstop position.

It will be interesting to see where the Astros decide to have him start the year as he will be turning 22 at the end of March but Correa doesn't have the Astros needing to rush him to the Majors. He did hit .319 in 37 games in the California League so there's a chance he will start this season at Double-A if they decide that was enough for him at that level.

8

Franklin Barreto

Position: SS Age: 20 DOB: 02/27/1996 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 5' 10" Weight: 190 lb. Signed: July 2, 2012 - TOR

Scouting Grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 50 | Run: 50 | Arm: 60 | Field: 45 | Overall: 55

#Athletics Franklin Barreto is the 8th best SS prospect for 2016

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Originally signed by the Blue Jays back in 2012 he had a breakout campaign in the Short Season Northwest League in 2014 before being a big piece in the trade with the Oakland A's that saw Josh Donaldson sent north of the border. He then started his first full season in Stockton in the High-A California League which enabled us to see him play in person a ton.

Stockton has seen there share of highly regarded prospects at the shortstop position over the years and while he may not quite fill in the shoes that the Addison Russell trade left be certainly looks to be more Russell like in his future projections than someone like Cliff Pennington. Despite being one of the league's youngest players he hit .302 with 13 home runs in just 90 games as he showed off his ability to put the ball in play and an incredible quick powerful bat before a season-ending wrist injury. While looking like a veteran at the plate he showed his youth defensively as he had a career-high 34 errors as he has good range but his hands and poor throws to first were an issue all season long.

While he may end up needing to move to third base or second base if he can't cut down on the errors his bat which is more Russell and not Pennington will keep him in the lineup as the A's hope they have their shortstop of the future. He doesn't have the best speed but we could see him being a future top of the order mainstay in Oakland as he does have some good speed and can steal a base or two when needed

9

Gleyber Torres

Position: SS Age: 19 DOB: 12/13/1996 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6' 1" Weight: 175 lb. Signed: July 2, 2013 - CHC

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 45 | Run: 55 | Arm: 60 | Field: 55 | Overall: 55

#Cubs Gleyber Torres is the 9th best SS prospect for 2016

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We mentioned Addison Russell with Franklin Barreto and it would be hard to not mention him once again here as Torres was signed by the Cubs back in 2013 for $1.7 million and could have the Cubs with a nice problem to have if this youngster soars through the minor leagues at a quick pace. In his first full season he was named as the low Class A Midwest League's top prospect despite just being 18 years old.

Known for his advanced bat and solid skills across the board this Venezuelan shows an advanced approach at the plate as he recognizes pitches well and hits the ball to all sides of the field with a quick swing from the right side. Hopes are that as he mature and gets older his power will increase and could eventually be a 15-20 home run hitter from the top of the order.

Showing signs of improving defensively in 2015 he looks like he may be able to stick at the shortstop position at the higher levels with his likely biggest issue being Russell already holding that spot in Chicago and not likely to give it up anytime soon. Injuries and trades can always play a factor in the future but with good instincts and a strong arm he could also end up playing alongside Russell on either side of him.

10

Ozzie Albies

Position: SS Age: 19 DOB: 01/07/1997 Bats: S Throws: R Height: 5' 9" Weight: 150 lb. Signed: July 2, 2013 - ATL

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 30 | Run: 70 | Arm: 60 | Field: 55 | Overall: 55

COming at at 10, #Braves Ozzie Albies on our top SS prospect list for 2016

(Cliff Welch)

Last but certainly not least is another youngster who will still be a teenager for the entire 2016 season after making his full season debut last year after signing with the Braves. As an 18-year old he hit .310/.368/.404 with 29 stolen bases over 98 games at Class-A while also showing above-average defensive abilities and playing in the Futures Game before fracturing his thumb in August.

Despite his young age and just being 5-foot-8 he is able to control the infield as he has quick feet along with plus speed and a strong arm. A switch hitter he hits better from the right side but he hit over .300 from both sides of the plate and can steal bases once he reaches.

Where he will start the season will depend on where the Braves have Dansby Swanson start the season as they want both prospects to start the year playing shortstop on an everyday basis before they eventually at some point decide which of the two they might have switch to second base to makeup up what they hope will be their middle infield combination for years to come in Atlanta.