Milwaukee Brewers 2021 Top 50 Prospects

The Milwaukee Brewers farm system gets looked down upon a lot. Some evaluators regard it as one of the worst systems in baseball, but I think that’s an unfair evaluation. There is a lot of talent in this minor league system for the Brewers and a lot of potential.

The issue with this farm system is that it is filled with “boom-or-bust” potential and most of the talent is in the lower levels. There aren’t very many high-floor players that can be quick to make an immediate impact at the big league level. But there are a lot of players that could, potentially, if everything comes together, be really good players at the big league level. They’re further down in the system and are a few years away. Some have been booming, some have been busting.

This farm system is not far removed from being one of the best in baseball, but a lot of key prospects have graduated to full time roles on the big league roster, including Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff, Keston Hiura, Josh Hader, and Devin Williams.


Technically, Devin Williams is still “prospect-eligible” since he has less than 50 innings in MLB, but given he spent the entire 2020 season in the big leagues and just won the NL Rookie of the Year award, I have a hard time considering him a prospect still and as such have made the decision that he won’t be on this list. If he were to be on this list, he would’ve been somewhere in the Top 5 but Williams is someone everyone, especially fantasy baseball players, should be aware of by now.

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 a 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

The Brewers don’t have much in terms of players ready to jump up and make an impact in 2021. Most of the exciting talent is currently down in the lower levels of the minors.

Despite picking in the latter half of the five rounds of the 2020 MLB Draft, the Brewers were able to snag some pretty good talent to help stock up their farm system. All five of those picks have made this year’s Top 50. This is a system that’s on the way up, and as more of the “boom” prospects solidify themselves, the recognition will follow. With strong 2021 seasons, the Brewers could have a couple of Top 100 overall prospects in here. With that, let’s dig in to the Brewers Top 50 Prospects.

Tier 1

1. Garrett Mitchell, OF
Age: 22
Highest level: College

The Brewers were thrilled when Mitchell fell down the board to the 20th pick in the 2020 Draft. He was a Top-10 talent that fell due to concerns over his Type-1 diabetes, but the Brewers did their research on him and were more than happy to add him. Mitchell is a potential 5-Tool centerfielder, if the Brewers can unlock his immense raw power. His role as the leadoff hitter at UCLA stifled his in-game power, but the power is in there. Mitchell is extremely fast, which helps him cover a lot of ground in center and has a strong throwing arm. When that power shows up, and the Brewers have a knack for getting that out of their hitters (see Yelich), Mitchell is a perennial All-Star talent in centerfield and could be the heir apparent to Lorenzo Cain in Milwaukee in 2023 if all goes well.

Tier 2

2. Hedbert Perez, OF
Age: 17
Highest Level: Alternate Training Site 2020

Although he hasn’t played in any official games yet, Perez is an extremely exciting prospect that fans should remember the name of and get excited for, while dynasty league players should snatch him up before everyone else knows about him. Perez has a beautiful left-handed swing that generates power and above-average on-base ability. An incredible athlete, Perez is said to be a very mature kid and his makeup should only help him bring out the best of his on-the-field tools. Perez is also speedy, with a strong throwing arm, and has the ability to be a lockdown defender in center field going forward. He’ll finally be able to get in official games in 2020, and he could be the Crew’s top prospect in short order. As long as he produces offensively in affiliated ball, Perez could move relatively quickly through the minors as a future 5-tool centerfielder.


3. Brice Turang, SS
Age: 21
Highest Level: High-A

The Brewers were excited to land Turang in the 2018 Draft, and he’s been just about everything they could hope for since. Turang posted strong numbers as a 19 year old in Low-A in 2019, hitting .287/.384/.376 with 19 extra base hits, 49 walks, and 21 stolen bases. He earned an aggressive promotion to High-A as a teenager and struggled a little bit as the youngest player in the Carolina League. Turang was set to start 2020 back in High-A, but after a year of positive developments at the Alternate Training Site and Instructs, there’s a chance the 21 year old Turang could be in Double-A to start 2021. Turang still has some room for physical growth and could add some more power to his profile, which he reportedly did at the Alternate Site, but he’ll always be a hit-over-power kind of guy while his defense is strong enough to stick at short. Provided he continues to hit well, Turang can be an everyday starting shortstop at the top of the lineup at the big league level.

4. Ethan Small, LHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: Low-A

Although not the highest ceiling pitcher in the Brewers farm system, Small might be on the fastest track to the big leagues and has a very high floor as a No. 4 or No. 5 starter. An advanced college arm, Small dominated the lower levels of the minors in 2019, posting a 0.86 ERA in seven starts across Rookie ball and Low-A with 36 strikeouts and only four walks in 21 IP. He was poised for a big season in 2020 where his development could’ve been accelerated up the system. Instead he pitched well at the Alternate Training Site, refining his new pitch, a slider, and turning it into a possible above-average offering. The addition of the slider gives Small a four pitch mix that only helps raise his ceiling. Small is a “pitchability lefty” that throws in the low-90s with his fastball and gets outs through deception, and pitch sequencing. He might possibly see some big league time late in 2021, but he’ll definitely be a roster candidate in 2022.

5. Mario Feliciano, C
Age: 22
Highest Level: Double-A

Prep catchers are a tough demographic to develop, and Feliciano took a little while, but he broke out in a big way in 2019, winning the Carolina League MVP award after hitting .273/.324/.477 with 25 doubles, four triples, and 19 homers in 116 games. He had a short stint in Double-A to end the year, and was added to the 40 man roster just this offseason. Feliciano has been dubbed by many the “catcher of the future” for the Brewers. Feliciano has big power that he began to tap into in 2019, but he does have some strikeout issues that could hamper him from reaching his offensive potential. He reportedly continued his power surge at the Alternate Site in 2020 and showed improvements defensively. He’ll likely be in Triple-A at least by year’s end and if Omar Narvaez doesn’t perform up to expectations in 2021, Feliciano could be in line to be the starter in 2022 and beyond.

6. Antoine Kelly, LHP
Age: 21
Highest Level: Low-A

There aren’t many prospects who are as high-risk, high-reward as Kelly. With a big left arm that can throw fastballs in the upper 90s, Kelly has the potential to be a front half of the rotation starter in the big leagues, and so far in his career, it looks like the risk is paying off for the Brewers. After posting a 1.26 ERA with 41 strikeouts and five walks in 28.2 IP in Rookie ball in 2019, Kelly was one of the stars of the Alternate Training Site in 2020, showcasing improved offspeed stuff, and improved control. His changeup and slider markedly improved, which would give him a solid three pitch mix, and the ability to stick as a starter. Kelly is still young and very raw, and there’s a lot of development left to go and a lot of reliever risk. But so far things are tracking well for him to remain as a starter, and there’s huge upside here.

7. Aaron Ashby, LHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: High-A

Ashby is another exciting LHP prospect the Brewers have. The winner of the Brewers’ 2019 Minor League Pitcher of the Year award, Ashby pitched extremely well across two levels, pitching to a 3.54 ERA in Low-A Wisconsin before earning a mid-season promotion to High-A Carolina and posting a 3.46 ERA there. He put up gaudy strikeout numbers in Low-A  but also has a little trouble with walks. Ashby added velocity in 2020, now sitting in the mid-90s instead of the low-90s and has a hammer curveball, the best in the Brewers system, per Baseball America. Ashby also has a slider that can be a plus-pitch going forward. He didn’t get to the Alternate Site until later in the year, but dominated at Instructs and is in line for a big year, likely at Double-A in 2021. Ashby’s ceiling is that of a No. 3 starter, but there’s still some risk he ends up as a reliever and 2021 will be a key year for determining his future role.

8. Drew Rasmussen, RHP
Age: 25
Highest Level: MLB

Rasmussen was a fast-riser through the minor league system, getting taken in the 6th round in 2018 and making it to the big leagues in 2020. A first round talent, Rasmussen fell due to his second Tommy John surgery after getting drafted in the first round in 2017. The Brewers were happy to snag him in the 6th a year later and so far it’s paid off. Rasmussen has a plus-plus fastball that averages 98 MPH and touches triple-digits and pairs it with a nasty slider. His 5.87 ERA in 2020 wasn’t great, but it was small sample size of just 12 games and he had a 3.34 xFIP to go with. As long as his command continues to improve, Rasmussen has the ability to be a lockdown closer in the future. He was a starter in the minors, but after two elbow reconstructions, there’s legitimate concern he could handle a starter’s workload and is likely to remain in the bullpen as an impact, high leverage reliever.

Tier 3

9. Tristen Lutz, OF
Age: 22
Highest Level: High-A

Lutz has as much power as anyone in this Brewers system and has been since he was drafted 34th overall back in 2017. The issue is consistently tapping into that power and making enough contact. Lutz tends to get off to slow starts early in the season, which can be common for some players. Lutz has hit 13 homers in each of the last two minor league seasons and he has a bit of a strikeout problem, punching out 137 times in 112 games in 2019. He’s been hitting around the .250 range but has been able to draw walks and get on base. Lutz has a strong throwing arm and profiles well as a right fielder given his power potential and strong throwing arm. He’ll likely start 2021 in Double-A and could push his way to Triple-A before the year is out. If he continues to improve this year, he’ll be a candidate for the big league roster in 2022.

10. Eduardo Garcia, SS
Age: 18
Highest Level: DSL

Signed on his 16th birthday in 2018, Garcia has only played in 10 official games as a pro, all in the Dominican Summer League before he suffered a broken ankle in the 2019 season. He performed at the Alternate Training Site in 2020 and even though he was one of the youngest players there, he held his own and is completely healthy. Garcia is a glove-first shortstop and his defense is what will carry him to the big leagues. His ultimate role in the big leagues, however, will be determined by his bat. He shows a solid hit tool now, being able to spray the ball all over the field, and has some raw power, which he could tap into as he develops. His profile sounds similar to that of Orlando Arcia’s when he was a prospect: Glove-first, some promise with the bat that, if realized, could turn him into an All-Star. Garcia will likely spend time in Low-A this year, and that’ll be a big litmus test for his bat.

11. Freddy Zamora, SS
Age: 22
Highest Level: College

Zamora missed all of 2020 with a torn ACL, which contributed to his fall to the 2nd round in the 2020 Draft, where the Brewers were happy to pick him up. Defensively, Zamora has the skills to a plus defender at shortstop and pairing that with his offensive potential makes him a very exciting prospect once he gets back on the field. He has an advanced approach that draws walks and avoids strikeouts. He was a career .300 hitter at Miami and stole 33 bases in two years. Zamora can hit for some power, but it’s not a big part of his game. Provided he recovers well from his knee injury, Zamora can move quickly through the system.

12. Luis Medina, OF
Age: 17
Highest Level: 2019 international signee

He’s just 17 years old and hasn’t played in any official games yet, but Medina is 6’2″ of raw power. Medina’s left-handed, which will help his power play up when he gets to Milwaukee given the hitter-friendly nature of American Family Field. He’s a power-over-hit type of guy, which means his development is going to be slow as the Brewers work to make sure Medina is still going to be able to make enough contact and avoid striking out enough to tap into his immense raw power. Medina’s arm strength is his other above-average tool, and that makes him a likely right fielder as he gets older. Medina was able to catch up to higher velocities at instructs this year, which bodes well for his 2021 season, which could start in the DSL or in Rookie ball in Arizona.

13. Zack Brown, RHP
Age: 26
Highest Level: Triple-A

Left off the 40 man roster two straight years now, Brown’s prospect status has fallen a little bit after his poor 2019 season in Triple-A. Reports out of the Alternate Training Site in 2020 say Brown more back to his old self and had found consistency again. Brown has a mid-90s fastball with a plus curveball and a solid-average changeup. There’s still hope for him as a starter, and not having a minor league season in 2020 didn’t help him, but he might have righted the ship at the ATS. He could make his debut in Milwaukee in 2021 either as a spot starter or in a bullpen role.

14. Carlos Rodriguez, OF
Age: 20
Highest Level: Rookie

Rodriguez has shown well in Rookie ball and would’ve spent 2020 in Low-A and likely will start there in 2021. Rodriguez is a slap hitter that focuses just on putting the ball in play and then uses his plus-speed to get on base. He’s hit .327 across two seasons of Rookie ball, but it remains to be seen how well that’ll hold up as he faces more advanced pitching. Despite his plus-speed, Rodriguez has stolen only 19 bases as a pro, and has been caught 16 times. A strong defender, Rodriguez can stick in centerfield and figures to be a top of the order hitter at maturity with very little in terms of home run power.

15. Jeferson Quero, C
Age: 18
Highest Level: 2019 international signee

Quero was a key member of the Brewers 2019 International signing class, and he’s showing an incredible amount of potential as well. At just 18, Quero is already a strong defender behind the plate, with a cannon for an arm and great blocking and receiving skills. Offensively, Quero has some power and an advanced approach at the plate that he uses to hit the ball to all fields and that could help him move relatively quickly through the minor leagues. The Brewers are loaded with catching depth and Quero is just one of the latest backstops to be added to the mix. His intangibles as a leader and as someone who can handle a pitching staff are extremely advanced for his young age. He has an incredibly high ceiling and could be making jumps up these lists once he starts playing in official games.

16. Payton Henry, C
Age: 23
Highest Level: High-A

Henry was left off the 40 man roster this winter, despite being Rule 5 eligible. Henry hasn’t played above High-A and was likely to head back there in 2020 with a chance to move up to Double-A before the season was scrubbed. Henry’s a strong defender with a floor as a backup in the big leagues, but his offensive potential is what makes or breaks his prospect status. He has big power, slugging 14 home runs and 37 extra base hits in 2019, however he doesn’t hit for a high average, just .241 in his minors career and strikes out at a 33.5% clip. He’s a power-over-hit player on offense, but is a defense-first catcher.

17. Dylan File, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: Double-A

File has been able to put himself on the radar as a prospect in a very short amount of time. After being a 21st round pick in 2017, File was added to the Brewers 40 man roster this winter. Reports indicate he added velocity in 2020, sitting more around 93-95 MPH on his fastball now instead of the 90-92 he was at before. The slider is his best offspeed pitch, and he also works in a curveball and changeup. File’s command is incredible and probably the best in this system allowing just a 1.72 BB/9 in his minors career. File had a 3.24 ERA across two levels in 2019, including a 2.79 ERA in 14 starts in Double-A. File has gotten better every year he’s been a professional and appears poised for a strong 2021 season with a good chance to make his major league debut and could be a back-end rotation option going forward.

18. Alec Bettinger, RHP
Age: 25
Highest Level: Double-A

Bettinger also came out of almost nowhere as a 10th round pick in 2017 and turned himself into a budding prospect. Bettinger also has very good command and turned in a 3.44 ERA in 26 starts at Double-A in 2019 with just a 2.15 BB/9 and a 9.66 K/9. With a slightly more deceptive delivery than File’s, Bettinger has been able to get more strikeouts than File. Bettinger was a reliever in college, which makes his run of success as a starter in the minors a little surprising, but he could stick as a back-end starter going forward or work as a versatile reliever out of the bullpen in the big leagues. Look for him to get an opportunity in the big leagues in 2021.

19. Zavier Warren, C
Age: 22
Highest Level: College

Despite mostly playing as an infielder at Central Michigan, the Brewers drafted Warren as a catcher, believing he has the athleticism to play the position and the offensive ability to maximize his value there. Warren played Indy ball after getting drafted and hit just .190 while he was getting acclimated behind the plate. He performed better at Instructional league in the fall, but he’s going to take some time to develop as a prospect. His 55-grade bat is his carrying tool, and as long as he continues to hit well, Warren can make an impact at the big league level.

20. Nick Kahle, C
Age: 22
Highest Level: High-A

Another catcher in a deep crop in this system, Kahle might be one of the surest bets of the group to make the big leagues, behind Mario Feliciano of course. Kahle is a strong defender with an accurate throwing arm and he can manage a pitching staff quite well. At the plate, he has an advanced approach, works walks well, and turned in an .802 OPS in 2019 across mostly Rookie ball and then High-A. He hit .255 with 18 extra base hits in Rocky Mountain with 141 ABs. If his bat improves going forward, Kahle can be a starting catcher in the big leagues. If not, Kahle can find a role as an extremely good backup. But all indications are his bat is progressing well right now.


21. Hayden Cantrelle, SS
Age: 22
Highest Level: College

A switch-hitter, Cantrelle was the Crew’s 5th round pick in 2020 and he has an intriguing blend of tools. In independent ball in 2020, Cantrelle put up a solid .264/.393/.345 slash line and then played well at Instructional League in the fall. Cantrelle profiles as a leadoff hitter, spraying the ball all over the field, hitting for a high average, possessing plus-speed, also with some sneaky pop. Historically, Cantrelle has gotten off to slow starts at the plate, hitting below .200 for the first month of the season each year of his college career. Right around the time he normally gets on a hot streak, the season shut down in 2020, leaving him with a .136 average his Junior year. That dropped him to the 5th round, but he’s much more talented than that and should outplay his draft position long-term.

Tier 4

22. Micah Bello, OF
Age: 20
Highest Level: Rookie

Bello was one of the stars of Instructional League this year. A second round pick in 2018 out of high school, Bello spent the 2018 and 2019 seasons in Rookie ball and didn’t exactly knock the cover off the ball (.690 OPS combined) but he made some big strides in his development in 2020. He was hitting balls hard and playing extremely well defensively, which indicates he can stick in centerfield going forward, which is huge for his value. Look for him to have a breakout 2021 in full-season minor league ball.

23. Thomas Dillard, C/1B/OF
Age: 23
Highest Level: Low-A

You like dingers from a switch-hitting catcher? Then Thomas Dillard is your guy! Dillard has as much power as anyone in this Brewers farm system and he’s able to tap into it consistently. A 5th round pick in 2019, Dillard hit .249/.391/.407 across Rookie ball and Low-A in his first season with seven home runs in 189 ABs. The position where he’s most valuable is behind the plate, and he got a ton of work there at the Alternate Training Site in 2020 and reports indicate he can stick there going forward, but he can also play some corner spots around the field. Being able to focus on his defensive development in 2020 without worrying about tanking his offensive stats should be helpful for Dillard as he looks to post a strong season in 2021 and work his way up to the majors.

24. Noah Zavolas, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: High-A

After going through an offseason velocity program with the Brewers, Zavolas was seeing some gains with his velo heading into 2020 after normally sitting around 88-91 MPH on his fastball. Zavolas also added pitches to his repertoire, now possessing six(!) pitches in his arsenal. He has impeccable command, with just a 1.56 BB/9 in 2019 in the Carolina League. Zavolas was named the 2019 Carolina League Pitcher of the Year with his 2.98 ERA in 22 starts. Zavolas was primed for more improvement in 2020 before the minor league season was shut down with his added velocity and extra pitches. As he jumps into Double-A ball in 2021, Zavolas could be a name on the rise soon and could stick in the back end of the Brewers rotation.

25. Jesus Parra, 2B/3B
Age: 18
Highest Level: DSL

Parra is one of the few corner infield prospects the Brewers have in this system, although he is several years away from the big leagues. Parra has plenty of raw power that he’s already shown some ability to tap into with six homers and 15 doubles in 65 games in the 2019 DSL season. He does have a little bit of a strikeout issue and may not hit for a super high average, but his power profile and strong arm make him a solid candidate to stick at third base going forward. He should be ready for Rookie ball in Arizona in 2021 and could possibly make the jump to Low-A.

26. Leo Crawford, LHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: Double-A

Just coming over in the Corey Knebel trade, Crawford is an interesting addition to this Brewers farm system. A funky, crafty lefty that doesn’t show overpowering velocity but is able to get guys out and throw strikes. Crawford has a career 3.22 ERA in the minors and a low 2.27 BB/9. Crawford has an excellent changeup and could end up in the back end of a rotation or possibly in the bullpen. He’s also adept at disrupting hitters’ timing.

27. Max Lazar, RHP
Age: 21
Highest Level: Low-A

Lazar doesn’t excite much with his velocity, sitting in the upper 80s-low 90s range, but he’s been able to find success. After some pedestrian numbers in two years in Rookie ball after being drafted in 2017, Lazar dominated in 2019 with a 1.50 ERA in Rookie ball three games and then a 2.39 ERA in 19 games in Low-A. He also struck out 119 batters in just 85 IP in 2019. Lazar has a plus-changeup and great control that gives him the upside of a solid back-end starter down the road.

28. Jackson Chourio, SS
Age: 16
Highest Level: 2020 international signee

Chourio is one of the newest members of the Brewers farm system, just signing out of Venezuela. The July 2nd signing period got pushed back to January 15th, so Chourio hasn’t been able to officially join the organization until now. Chourio has great bat speed and a pretty good power/speed combination. Defensively, he should be able to stick at shortstop going forward. As long as he can continue to hit, Chourio can be a key player going forward and will likely be getting the highest signing bonus of anyone in the Crew’s international signing class.

29. David Hamilton, SS
Age: 23
Highest Level: College

Hamilton tore his Achilles before his final year for the University of Texas and that pushed him down to the Brewers in the 8th round in 2019. He didn’t get a chance to play in affiliated minor league ball in 2019, but the speedster had a strong 2020 season. Playing in the independent, temporary Constellation Energy League in Texas this past summer, Hamilton slashed .296/.430/.370 with 20 stolen bases in 27 games, and was caught 0 times. He also drew 19 walks and struck out just 16 times. With his on-base and stolen base ability, Hamilton could be a threat at the top of the Brewers lineup in the future.

30. Clayton Andrews, LHP/OF
Age: 24
Highest Level: Double-A

Andrews has proven himself to be a capable two-way player in college and in the minors. On the mound, Andrews had a 3.19 ERA across High-A and Double-A in 2019 and also hit .333 with a .772 OPS in 63 ABs. Standing at just 5’6″, Andrews doesn’t have much power at the plate and his future is likely on the mound as a reliever. He doesn’t throw very hard, but has two good off-speed pitches in his curveball and changeup. It’s unclear if Andrews will continue to both pitch and hit when he gets to the major leagues.

31. Nick Bennett, LHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: Low-A

Drafted in 2019, Bennett only has 11 games of pro experience under his belt but his 1.91 ERA over 33 IP with 43 strikeouts and just 10 walks allowed gives reason for optimism. Bennett was a part of the big group of lefty pitchers the Brewers added in that 2019 draft class and stands at 6’4″ and 210 pounds. He has the size, arsenal, and command to remain a starter going forward and could advance through the minor league system rather quickly and find a role as a mid-back end starter in the future.

32. Victor Castaneda, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: Low-A

Another one of the big stars of Instructional League, Castaneda pushed up his stock and appears to be in line for a breakout 2021 season. He had just a 4.50 ERA in 32 games, mostly as a reliever, in 2019 in Low-A, but had a 10.8 K/9 and just a 2.8 BB/9. He pitched as a starter at Instructs and if he can continue in the rotation, that will increase his value going forward.

33. Tyrone Taylor, OF
Age: 26
Highest Level: MLB

Taylor was once a highly regarded prospect, but his development has slowed over the years. He’s shown some ability with the bat, posting a .271 average and .860 OPS over 48 ABs the last two seasons in the big leagues. He’s likely going to be the backup outfielder on this Brewers roster in 2021 and can play all three outfield spots.

34. Joey Wiemer, OF
Age: 21
Highest Level: College

The Crew’s 4th round pick in 2020, Wiemer has a lot of potential, but is extremely raw, especially for a college bat. He has tremendous raw power, but his swing needs to be re-worked. He’s fast and has a strong throwing arm, and should be able to play any outfield position. His arm strength and power profile makes him a likely right fielder in the future, but fixing his swing is the higher priority for the Brewers and Wiemer right now. This is a project.

35. Pablo Abreu, OF
Age: 21
Highest Level: Low-A

After undergoing offseason surgery this year, Abreu will enter 2021 looking for a breakout year. He struggled in his first stint in Low-A in 2019 but he’s still young. Abreu has huge upside and could stick in centerfield with his speed and arm strength. His bat will need to develop some more consistency and tap into his raw power some more before he can be an impact prospect though, but keep an eye on him.

36. Jacob Nottingham, C
Age: 25
Highest Level: MLB

Nottingham has been puzzling as a catching prospect. He’s turned from an offense-first catcher with power to a defense-first catcher that struggles making contact. He got a little bit of an extended look in 2020 and showed his power and strong defense, but also hit just .188 and struck out 20 times in 48 ABs. He might prove to be useful if he gets a real extended chance to start, but with Omar Narvaez and Manny Pina ahead of him, that’s unlikely to happen in Milwaukee.

37. Corey Ray, OF
Age: 26
Highest Level: Triple-A

The 5th overall pick in the 2016 Draft, Ray was thought to be a quick-riser through the farm system with a power/speed combination to jumpstart the Brewers rebuild. Instead, injuries and poor performance have derailed his prospect status. In his only complete and healthy season in 2018, Ray hit 27 homers and stole 37 bases, a glimpse of his great potential, but also hit just .237 and struck out 176 times. He then struggled mightily in 2019 in Triple-A but was battling through injuries. He showed well at the Alternate Training Site in 2020, but still struggled with making enough contact. He’ll head back to Triple-A in 2021 and if he hits and stays healthy, he could be in the big leagues this year, but he’s likely a backup outfielder going forward.

38. Luke Barker, RHP
Age: 28
Highest Level: Triple-A

Barker wasn’t selected in the Rule 5 Draft in December despite being eligible, but he’s put up some ridiculous numbers in he minors. In 2019, in 40 games, Barker had a miniscule 1.34 ERA across Double-A and Triple-A. He gets a lot of strikeouts, doesn’t walk many, and has late-inning experience. He isn’t currently on the 40 man roster, but he could push his way into a big league bullpen role in 2021 with another strong performance in either spring training or Triple-A.

39. Phil Bickford, RHP
Age: 25
Highest Level: MLB

Bickford has had some tough luck since joining the Brewers in the 2016 Will Smith trade. But after injuries and a suspension, Bickford bounced back in 2019, then pitched well at the Alternate Site in 2020 and made his major league debut. His debut didn’t go well, but he can carve out a bullpen role in 2021 with a strong spring. He sits in the mid-90s on his fastball with a good slider.

Tier 5

40. Je’von Ward, OF
Age: 21
Highest Level: Low-A

Ward is a big project for the Brewers. Drafted in the 12th round out of high school in 2017, Ward has a strong power/speed combination from the left side of the plate and appeared in line for a breakout 2020 season before it was cancelled. He’s pretty raw as a prospect still, but keep an eye on him in 2021.

41. Joe Gray, Jr., OF
Age: 20
Highest Level: Rookie

Gray is a very good athlete and a strong defender in center field. A second round pick in 2018, Gray’s stock has fallen, at least in my eyes, after lackluster offensive performances in Rookie ball in 2018 and 2019. He’s battled some injuries and his stock could rise quickly with a strong showing in 2021, but I need to see it to believe it with Gray. He’ll likely start the year in Low-A.

42. Alexis Ramirez, RHP
Age: 21
Highest Level: Rookie

Reports out of Instructional League say that Ramirez’s velocity has made a jump and he’s now reaching the upper 90s on his fastball. His 4.91 ERA and 4.0 BB/9 in two years across the DSL and Rookie ball aren’t great, but he has continued to mature physically and his increased velo could lead to improved results.

43. Ernesto Martinez, 1B
Age: 21
Highest Level: Rookie

Martinez stands at 6’6″ and 229 pounds and has incredible raw power from the left side of the plate. He posted an .802 OPS in Rookie ball in 2019. Martinez was likely to enter full season ball in 2020 and will do so in 2021 with a chance to perhaps make it up to High-A this year. The Brewers don’t have much for first base prospects, but if Martinez continues to show improvement, he may put himself in the big league conversation for the future.

44. Gabe Holt, 2B
Age: 22
Highest Level: Rookie

Despite being a 7th round pick in 2019 and not being one of the higher regarded prospects in this Brewers farm system, the Brewers made a late invitation for Holt to join their Alternate Training Site in 2020. Similar to David Hamilton, 29th on this list, Holt is an on-base machine that’s a major stolen base threat at the top of the order. Holt doesn’t have a solidified defensive home and doesn’t have much power, but his bat and speed ability make him intriguing.

45. Yeison Coca, SS
Age: 21
Highest Level: Low-A

Coca was the PTBNL throw-in from the Travis Shaw-Tyler Thornburg trade with the Red Sox. He has some speed, stealing 25 bases in 2019 in Low-A, but he struggled to make contact and get on base. Coca’s a strong defender that can stick at short, but will likely be a utility player if he reaches the majors. The question is, will he hit enough?

46. Bowden Francis, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: Double-A

Francis was a key part of a very strong rotation in Double-A Biloxi in 2019. He has a good starter’s build at 6’5″ and 225 pounds and gets strikeouts at a strong clip. If he continues to pitch well and improve, he could possibly earn a spot in the back end of a big league rotation and if not, can be a solid bullpen piece.

47. Eduarqui Fernandez, OF
Age: 19
Highest Level: DSL

Fernandez possesses a solid power/speed combination. In the 2019 DSL season, Fernandez slugged 11 home runs and stole 15 bases in just 72 games. He also struck out 98 times in 266 at-bats and hit just .214. He could stick in centerfield and provide some power, but he has to fix the strikeout issue and make more contact first. He just turned 19 and is likely to play stateside in 2021.

48. Chad Spanberger , 1B
Age: 25
Highest Level: Double-A

Spanberger was the return in the Chase Anderson deal in 2019 and while he’s yet to play a game for a Brewers affiliate, he could put himself on the map if he has a strong start to 2021. While he won’t hit for a high average and will strike out a decent amount, he can hit for power and given the Brewers’ lack of first base options at the big league level, Spanberger could put himself in the conversation quickly with a hot start.

49. Cooper Hummel, OF
Age: 26
Highest Level: Double-A

A switch-hitter, Hummel pounded Double-A pitching in 2019 with 17 homers and a .835 OPS. He also struck out at a nearly 30% clip but drew walks at a 14.7% rate. His .384 OBP was the second-highest in the entire Southern League in 2019 and ahead of other top prospects such as Brandon Marsh, Daulton Varsho, and Drew Waters.

50. Caden Lemons, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: Rookie

A second round pick in 2017 out of high school, Lemons is an extremely raw pitching prospect and the Brewers knew that when they drafted him. Injuries have limited him to just 13 non-spectacular games over 2017 and 2018 and he missed all of 2019. With another year “off” to recover and improve in 2020, Lemons should be healthy to start 2021 and the 6’6″ righty could be ready for Low-A.




About David Gasper 3 Articles
Graduate of UW-La Crosse. Current editor-in-chief at Reviewing the Brew. Big believer of Corbin Burnes and driver of the Corbin Burnes Hype Train.

5 Comments

  1. The ranking and tier for Spanberger is completely ridiculous. The kid has hit everywhere he has gone, plays solid defense and can be a solid Major League player for the Brewers.

    • I like Spanberger, but it’s also difficult to rank him higher considering he hasn’t played since 2019 when he was coming off a bit of a down year. There’s a strong chance he’ll move up in the mid-season re-rank, and maybe it was a little low to start, but the Brewers added some good talent to this system since Spanberger joined it.

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