Los Angeles Angels 2020 Top 50 Prospects

Jo Adell (Spring Training 2019) - photo credit Benjamin Rush, forloveofbaseball on Flickr

The Angels farm system is once again headlined by Jo Adell, a consensus top 5 prospect. After him the Halos have a good amount of depth contrary to what many in the national media say. Marsh and Adams have a great chance to be impact players in the future. The pitching has some arms that have the potential of being mid tier starters and they have plenty of intriguing arms that could supply the bullpen with ample arms for years to come.

The Angels have been pretty consistent with their approach in the draft. They get the high ceiling athlete in the first 1 or 2 rounds and then hammer hard on pitching. It looks like this year that work is starting to see its fruits bear. The Burlington Bees (Class-A) staff had a number of good upside arms in Soriano, Pina, and Yan. Expect the draft process to continue as this may not be a draft by draft case but a normal vision they follow. The farm system has intriguing pieces at all levels and should be able to supplement the major league club for many years.


Prospects1500 Tiers:
Tier 1: Players with high expectations of both making the majors and playing at an All-Star level for a number of years
Tier 2: Players with an above average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 3: Players with an average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 4: Players who have the potential of making the majors, or have high likelihood of making the majors but providing minimal impact (e.g. middle reliever, low-ceiling UT guys)
Tier 5: Players who are worth keeping an eye on, but likely to never make a team’s 40-man roster


Tier 1

1. Jo Adell, OF
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: AAA
A
dell’s 2019 started off rough going down with 2 leg injuries in Spring Training, but he came back just as strong as ever and posted a good year between AA and AAA. The game’s #2 prospect (on our Prospects1500 Top 172 from this past October) is destined for stardom in the bigs. Be aware that Adell has some streakiness in his game. Once he made his debut in May and he was on fire, then eventually cooled off. There was also a point in the season he struck out 12 times in 5 games. It’s very Justin Upton-like of him. Expect Adell to be up at the MLB level sometime this year depending on how he performs. If he’s great in Spring Training he’ll likely start with the club. If not then expect by midseason for him to make his debut. ETA: 2020


Tier 2

2. Brandon Marsh, OF
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: AA
Marsh opened some eyes this fall during the Arizona Fall League, and was on the short list of MVP candidates at the end. While he doesn’t have quite the level of tools Adell has, he is currently a better hitter. Marsh’s problem has been his trouble to get to his raw power in game. His swing in the past has not generated much lift on the ball, there was some flashes during the fall league so all hope is not lost. Marsh is a very good corner outfielder with a plus arm and plus speed. He’s got a high floor and an All-Star level ceiling, though that’s unlikely. Expect him to be a major league regular although his path to the bigs maybe by trade rather than on the Angels. ETA: 2021

3. Jordyn Adams, OF
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: A+
The second Jordyn in the Angels farm system (spelled just a bit differently from Jordon Adell) is one of the fastest players in the minors, and is just a superb athlete. His bat is a work in progress, and he’s been through a number of swing changes which the Angels are known for (first ditching a leg kick he had in high school and then bringing it back). Be patient with his development, he is young and will take time to develop in all facets of the game. ETA: 2022

4. Jeremiah Jackson, SS
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
Jackson had the most noteworthy and exciting season in the Angels minor leagues. He tied for the most HRs in Pioneer league HISTORY! Take this performance with a grain of salt though. It’s a tremendous feat, but Jackson has average to above average power. Jackson did have a concerning K rate at 33% as well. He has great bat speed to excel on the offensive side of the ball if he can refine his approach. Defensively he is most likely to move to the right side of the infield, and his offense profiles great there. Don’t expect much on the bases paths as Jackson is an average to above average runner, but doesn’t have exceptional instincts there. ETA: 2022

5. Jahmai Jones, 2B
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: AA
Essentially in 2019, Jones had an identical season to 2018. He struggled for the majority of the season and then played well at the end of the year. Angels had him go through a number of swing changes again this year to try and get him to hit for more power, which is why he repeated AA as the current AAA environment this past year clouded results of changes. I expect him to compete for the Angels second base position, but there are 3 others in the mix so it may be hard for him to make the roster. ETA: 2020

6. D’Shawn Knowles, OF
Age: 18
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
After 2018 excitement was high for Knowles coming off a great first season, but he did not quite repeat that success this past season. It needs to be noted that he did this all at the age of 18 for the entire season. Knowles is a great athlete who’s going to need work with the bat but profiles well and is probably a fourth outfielder when all is said and done. ETA: 2022

7. Patrick Sandoval, LHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: MLB
Sandoval pitched across 3 levels last season and made his MLB debut for the Angels. While his numbers were not pretty, I really liked the process and thought his changeup was a legit weapon. Sandoval comes equipped with a mid 90s fastball, a curve that he uses as his put away pitch and the changeup that I mentioned that is his true weapon. The Angels are currently lining Sandoval as their 5th or 6th starter which is the role he belongs in. ETA: Debuted in 2019

8. Jose Soriano, RHP
Age: 21
2019 Highest Level: A
Soriano at times looked like the best pitcher in the Angels farm system and at other times could barely hit the strike zone with consistency. He’s armed with a mid to high 90s fastball, a 11-5 curve and a changeup that’s above average. If he is able to improve on his command he has a good shot at being a mid rotation starter or more. His ability to miss bats and avoid loud contact is exciting to see and he’s one to definitely keep an eye on. ETA: 2022

9. Kyren Paris, SS
Age: 18
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
A shortstop from the 2019 MLB Draft that is now their highest pick from that draft (after trading Will Wilson). Paris is a good quick twitch athlete that should be able to stick at shortstop long term. His bat is not nearly as refined as his defense. He had good results in the Arizona rookie league but needs to refine his approach, but has a projectable frame and good bat speed. His rawness at the plate is pretty typical of Angels draft picks as they like to start from an athlete and build him to a baseball player. Be patient with Paris, it may take a few years until his potential is fully fleshed out. ETA: 2023


Tier 3
10. Alexander Ramirez, OF

Age: 17
2019 Highest Level: DSL
Ramirez is a powerful outfielder that the Angels prized in their 2018 international class. The youngster is still 17 and will likely be making his stateside debut as the youngest player in the minors this next season. Ramirez is known for his large power with an upside of 70 grade for it. As normal from a young and power hitter he is still working on establishing consistent contact. Ramirez has decent speed now but as he fills out will likely be a below average runner. His arm lacks consistency currently to be a weapon, but that will likely improve as he ages and gains experience. ETA: 2024

11. Arol Vera, SS
Age: 17
2019 Highest Level: N/A
From one international prospect to another. Vera was the Angels top signing for the 2019 international class. The 6’2” Venezuelan shortstop is a switch hitter and has projectable frame. According to Ben Badler he controls the plate well from both sides. ETA: 2024

12. Trent Deveaux, OF
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
While Knowles has performed better for their international class, Deveaux has the higher ceiling. Deveaux is an 80 grade runner, but still needs to work on base stealing. Deveaux has the chance to be the best defender in the farm system with an above average arm and his great speed. His bat comes with a lot of swing and miss which has been common among many of the lower level hitters for the Angels. Of note with Deveaux, during the Home Run derby in the Bahamas he looked like he added some muscle to his frame which could help him in the power department if he can put the ball in the air more. ETA: 2022

13. Chris Rodriguez, RHP
Age: 21
2019 Highest Level: A+
Tell me if you heard this before, Rodriguez spent most of the season on the IL with a back injury. Hopefully the surgery put the problems behind him. Before the injury he was just dominating High-A and looked like he was going to fast track through the minors like Barria, Canning, Sandoval, and Suarez have the last 3 seasons. Rodriguez has a mid to upper 90s fastball, which he pairs with a plus flashing slider, above average curve and a changeup. We will have to see if the Angels change anything with his delivery as it has a violent headwack, but it hadn’t been changed during his previous injury so I wouldn’t expect it to now. If Rodriguez remains healthy going forward he projects as a SP2 or 3 depending on who you speak to. ETA: 2021

14. Aaron Hernandez, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: A+
Hernandez looks to be a back end starter, with a fastball that coming into the season he needed to command better. Reports early in the season had him in the low 90s even though he hit 98 at times in college. He pairs that with a plus flashing curve and an average slider and changeup. If he can get his fastball back to the mid 90s he showed in college with the command and performance he had in the fall league (2.9 BB/9), he could be something more. Expect him to start in AA next season. ETA: 2022

15. Hector Yan, LHP
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: A
Angels 2019 MiLB Pitcher of the Year. Yan had great strikeout numbers and was able to limit the hits against him. Soriano and he were a dynamic combo for the Burlington Bees. He has a low to mid 90s fastball that touches 96, which goes with his above average curve and a changeup that is shaping up to be an average pitch. While Yan saw major improvement with his command, there is still work to be done there for him to become a starter. Expect Yan to start in High-A along with Soriano. ETA: 2022

16. Davis Daniel, RHP
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: N/A
Daniel was picked in the 7th round of the 2019 Draft. Davis was likely a top 100 player in the draft until he had a UCL injury 2 innings into his season. He was going to be the ace for the Auburn staff. Armed with an upper 90s fastball, a solid breaking ball and good changeup. Struggled with command but stuff is enough to dream on. ETA: 2023

17. Jack Kochanowicz, RHP
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: N/A
Koch (I think I will just call him Koch) was a third round pick in the 2019 draft. Koch is a tall pitcher, which means he struggles with constantly repeating his mechanics as all young tall pitchers do. He had a low 90s fastball that is reportedly increasing as he went through instructs. He has a great curve and is working on a changeup. He is an exciting arm to see in 2020. ETA: 2023

18. Livan Soto, SS
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: A
Soto is a glove first infielder who has patient approach at the plate. Soto doesn’t have much pop at all which will keep him from being a regular. Likely will only be able to carve a role on the MLB level as a utility guy. ETA: 2022

19. Garrett Stallings, RHP
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: N/A
The Friday night starter at Tennessee, Angels drafted Stallings in the 5th round. Stallings does not have anything to overpower hitters, but he commands everything exceptionally well. His slider and changeup have the most potential and his curve is just average. Stallings’s fastball is 88-93. Do not expect much of a ceiling for Stallings but he has a good floor as a backend starter and should move quickly once he makes his professional debut. ETA: 2022

20. Michael Hermosillo, OF
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: MLB
Hermosillo has been an Angels prospect for too long. He is essentially who he’s going to be at this point. Injuries and Brian Goodwin have prevented him from taking the 4th outfield spot on the Halos. ETA: Debuted in 2018

21. Robinson Pina, RHP
Age: 21
2019 Highest Level: A
A right hander with two big pitches. Pina has a fastball that has taken a step forward this year, increasing in velocity. When all is said and done it may hit triple digits. His secondary pitch is his curve that’s a plus, but he needs to work on its command. Pina’s been solid at avoiding contact for his pro career. Unfortunately his third pitch (changeup) is nowhere near as good as his other two. He lacks command as shown by his BB/9 being over 5. If he can become more consistent with his command and his 3rd pitch becomes average, I can see him being a strong #4, but more likely he winds up as a dynamic late reliever. ETA: 2022

22. Kyle Tyler, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: A+
Tyler reminds me a bit of Stallings in his future. He’s a control over stuff guy with a fastball that sits in the low 90s, an average changeup, and his best pitch is an above average slider. In his first full season in the pros he dominated competition in both A and A+. Expect him to move quickly and it wouldn’t surprise me if he makes his AAA debut by the end of the season. ETA: 2022


Tier 4:

23. Stiward Aquino, RHP
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
After spending all of 2018 on the IL with a UCL injury, Aquino came back and made 12 starts and struck out 49 batters in 37 innings. The 20 year old has an upper 90s fastball that he throws with an above average curve and an average changeup. What I would like to see is for Aquino to take a step forward with his command in his second year removed from Tommy John. ETA: 2023

24. Oliver Ortega, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: AA
Ortega wows with a fastball that hits 99, and a curve that flashes plus. Unfortunately his changeup is more of a get me over pitch and limits his ceiling. Ortega also struggles with command which makes it look like he is destined to be in the bullpen arm. With that fastball and a plus curve he could be dynamic. I expect him to start making the transition to that role in 2020. ETA: 2021

25. Luis Madero, RHP
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: AA
Madero throws a low 90s sinking fastball generating plenty of ground balls. His other primary pitch is an above average curve. He has a so-so changeup as well. Madero’s best path to the majors is as a bullpen arm where he could increase his fastball velocity and where his two pitch mix can play up. ETA: 2021

26. William Holmes, DH/RHP
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
One of the 2 two-way players in the Angels organization (formerly known as William English). On the mound Holmes has a fastball that’s low to mid 90s with a developing changeup and raw curve. Holmes lacks command but has the athleticism sp that most scouts don’t worry about it. At the plate Holmes had surprisingly good results in a small sample size. His best calling card there is the above average power, but he also runs well which leads to an interesting power/speed combo. Holmes is a long way off from the majors and with how much work that needs to be done Angels fans and fantasy faithful need to be patient with him. ETA: 2023

27. Leonardo Rivas, SS
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: A+
Rivas has excelled in one area his entire pro career, that’s in his ability to walk. Even with dealing with injuries this season, he still managed to have a walk percentage over 10. Rivas plays primarily at short but has been getting experience all over the field, with the utility role being more of what he profiles as. Barring more injuries Rivas will begin 2020 in High-A Inland Empire. ETA: 2021

28. Adrian Placencia, SS
Age: 16
2019 Highest Level: N/A
The Dominican shortstop was the second player signed in the 2019 international signing period. Known more for his bat than his glove, as he grows older and fills out he will likely move to second. Placencia is advanced at the plate for his age and can hit to all fields. His swing has natural loft to it so he may be able to develop into above average power once all is said and done. ETA: 2024

29. Kevin Maitan, 3B
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: A
Notorious around the prospect community. Once touted as the next Miguel Cabrera, Maitan has never come even close to measuring up to those expectations. In his first full season he struggled offensively, his strikeout rate was above 30%, and he did not get much power out of the at bat (just 26 XBHs in over 500 PA). There are some improvements that can be made in the power department if he can change his swing to generate more lift (50% GB rate). Some good news for Maitan is that he’s improved defensively and cut down on the amount of errors he was committing. With the arm and those improvements remaining at 3rd long term is a real possibility. Maitan is still young, only 19 at the time of this writing and has plenty of time to develop. ETA: 2022

30. Kyle Keller, RHP
Age: 26
2019 Highest Level: MLB
Newly acquired reliever from the Marlins flashed some impressive stuff for the small stint he was in the majors. He’s equipped with a mid 90s fastball and a dynamic slider. His problem has been command. Perhaps a change of organizations can help with that and he can be a high leverage reliever. ETA: Debuted in 2019

31. Jeremy Beasley, RHP
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: AAA
Beasley pitched across both AA and AAA during 2019. LIke many pitchers his numbers in AAA were atrocious and thus should be taken with a large shaker of salt (as well as small sample size). Beasley has more of a back of the rotation or long reliever ceiling. He has a fastball, slider, splitter pitch mix, with all pitches being average, the splitter is the out pitch here. I don’t expect Beasley to make his debut this year unless the Angels have injury issues in the bullpen. ETA: 2020

32. Jake Lee, RHP
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: A+
Lee surprised everyone this year when he struck out 10 batters in 5 innings for his second start. He had another one later in the year with 9 Ks.  Lee is a big righty that throws a mid 90s fastball with a good changeup that he can throw to both right and left handers and quality curveball, he has a slider as well but it’s a work in progress. He’s been good at avoiding contact but when he is hit it tends to be hard contact with 10 of his 27 hits given up went for extras. Unfortunately Lee’s season was shutdown midseason and didn’t pitch after June. ETA: 2021


Tier 5:

33. Orlando Martinez, OF
Age: 21
2019 Highest Level: A+
A decent hitter out of Cuba, Martinez profiles more like a fourth outfielder rather than a regular. He has average tools across the board, except for his arm which is above average. He will fit best as a corner outfielder but will be serviceable in center. He’s got decent power numbers in the 66ers ballpark that’s not easy to hit in (contrary to popular belief). Martinez with likely begin 2020 in AA. ETA: 2021

34. Austin Warren, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: AA
Warren continued his quick trek through minors, making it all the way to AA and pitched well for Mesa in the AFL. Warren has a mid 90s fastball,  a good slider and an effective changeup. Warren could be challenging for a bullpen spot as early as this season if everything goes well. ETA: 2021

35. Andrew Wantz, RHP
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: AA
After Wantz’s utterly absurd year in 2018 (18.4 K/9) the Angels transitioned him to a starting role in 2019, with mixed results. His K rate was still really high for a starter, but he got hit a ton. He has a mid to low 90s fastball along with a changeup and a nasty slider. Wantz is a wait and see as a starter. If that experiment fails he can quickly transition back into a reliever and dominate his way to the majors. ETA: 2021 

36. Luis Alvarado, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: A
Senior right hander out of Omaha in 2018. Alvarado was the 5th best starter of the good group going through Burlington this past year. Alvarado is 3-pitch pitcher with a low 90s fastball and an average slider and curve. Alvarado’s best path to the majors will likely be in the bullpen where the fastball can play up. ETA: 2022

37. Greg Veliz, RHP
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: A
A senior signee from this past year’s Draft, Veliz made his way up to Burlington by the end of the season. Between both college and pro ball he pitched over 70 innings in 2019 and was likely very tired by season’s end. Veliz is armed with a mid 90s fastball and an above average slider and has shown a split change. He has all the tools to be a good bullpen arm in the future. ETA: 2022

38. Jeremy Rhoades, RHP
Age: 26
2019 Highest Level: AAA
Rhoades, like many Pacific Coast League pitchers, is probably waking up screaming in the middle of the night from the nightmare experience. Rhoades has an above average fastball and slider, and an average change. Unfortunately for Rhoades it’s difficult to see if their were any improvements from last year due to the ball changes. Rhoades could carve a niche out for himself as a middle reliever, but it’s going to be hard path as the Angels have a number of arms ahead of him and he’s not on the 40-man. ETA: 2021

39. Chad Sykes, RHP
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: A
Sykes excelled in Burlington this season as many pitchers did. He showed his advanced age and was able to take advantage of the younger batters. Sykes pitches in the low 90s with his fastball. Expect him to move quickly in the minors. ETA: 2022

40. Zach Linginfelter, RHP
Age: 22
2019 Highest Level: N/A
Angels 9th round pick this past draft, Linginfelter pumps a mid 90s fastball into the zone. He complements it with a slider that flashes between above average to plus and an average change up. Command is the biggest issue. ETA: 2023

41. Erik Rivera, OF/LHP
Age: 19
2019 Highest Level: A+
Another 2-way player in the Angels organization, Rivera was 2019 4th round pick out of Puerto Rico. Known for his great swing, Rivera has good pop and a great arm for the outfield and should end up as a right fielder. On the mound Rivera has a mid 90s fastball and some scouts liked him there instead of the field. Angels will probably let Rivera decide which side is better as he develops. ETA: 2022

42. Nonie Williams, OF
Age: 21
2019 Highest Level: A
Former shortstop played all season in the outfield for Burlington. Williams is a great athlete with plenty of tools but has trouble turning those tools to offensive production. Nonie really has one problem, he has not been able to make consistent enough contact to take advantage of it all. When he does connect a third of the time, he’s standing on second or beyond. He walks a ton (64 times), but it came with 166 Ks. He’s got plenty of speed and stole 23 bags last season. He’s definitely a guy to wait and see on because if he makes contact he’ll have a breakout season. ETA: 2022

43. Matt Ball, RHP
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: AAA
Ball pitched well in 2019 even holding his own in the brutal environment of Salt Lake. Ball was able to maintain a good strikeout and walk rates. Ball can pump his fastball 94. Ball looks like a 5th starter or AAA depth. ETA: 2020

44. Connor Van Scoyoc, RHP
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
Van Scoyoc had a decent first season in the pros, pitching in the Arizona rookie league. Van Scoyoc is a projectable righty. He has a fastball that sits in the low 90s and has 2 secondary pitches a changeup that has good sink and a curveball that has promise. He is still raw and Angels will be patient with his development. ETA: 2023

45. Jerryell Rivera, LHP
Age: 20
2019 Highest Level: Rookie
Rivera got hammered in his second stint in Orem, which is a very hitter friendly ballpark. He gave up too many hits for my liking but he still working on harnessing his pitches. It was nice to see his strikeout numbers jump back to the level that they were at in his first season stateside. His fastball sits in the low 90s but he lacks command in throwing his breaking ball and change up. Perhaps getting out of Orem will help lower his numbers and help him build more confidence on the mound. ETA: 2023

46. Jack Kruger, C
Age: 25
2019 Highest Level: AA
Kruger did not have a good season offensively, which is concerning for a catcher who’s defining attribute was his offense. Kruger lacks the defensive capabilities to allow it to play him into a backup role behind the plate. Hopefully last year was just a hiccup and we see him perform like he did in 2018. ETA: 2021

47. Gareth Morgan, OF
Age: 23
2019 Highest Level: AA
The ultimate boom or bust guy in the Angels system. The Halos acquired Morgan from the Mariners and he proceeded to hammer 21 home runs in under 250 PA. All that came with an almost 50% strikeout rate. His profile probably will not succeed in the long term but he’s definitely a fun one to watch. ETA: 2021

48. Brett Hanewich, RHP
Age: 25
2019 Highest Level: AA
Hanewich is flamethrower in every sense of the word. Hanewich can touch 100 with his fastball, but lacks a consistency with his secondary pitches whether that be his changeup or slider. He was able to dominate hitters in the lower minors (especially in High-A) but needs the consistent secondary pitch to be successful in the upper minors. Hanewich has been developed as a multi inning reliever so look for him to fill that role if he reaches the majors. ETA: 2021

49. Torii Hunter Jr., OF
Age: 24
2019 Highest Level: A+
Hunter hit pretty well for the 66ers in 2019. Known for the speed he showed at Notre Dame. Hunter will never be able to play to the level of his father but has great defense and can profile well as a 4th outfielder. ETA: 2022

50. Ryan Clark, RHP
Age: 26
2019 Highest Level: AAA
Clark had a great year with the Baybears pitching 45 innings and striking out 12.6 over 9. While he didnt have a great performance in the Arizona Fall League, it is known to be a mixed bag of what is the true value of a player’s performance there. Clark has a mid 90s fastball and an above average slider. He could be competing for a bullpen spot as early as next season. ETA: 2020




7 Comments

  1. 15 of 20 pitchers in top 50 prospects throwing in mid 90s. Team needs to accelerate learning curve on a few more pitchers

  2. Great list – Natanael Santana (CF) only 17 years old last season should def. be on this list and possibly top 30. Power and speed combo and plays CF.

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