Top Tier 5 Performers: Atlanta Braves

Riley Unroe. Florida Fire Frogs vs. Lakeland Flying Tigers, Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. Lakeland, FL. May 6, 2019. Photo credit - Tom Hagerty/, lakelandlocal on Flickr

If you are familiar with our work at Prospects1500, you know that Top 50 month (January) is our bread and butter. It is the release we look forward to the most every year. Within that top 50 we use a tier structure as follows:

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

We all know baseball is volatile and unpredictable and we should never assume any of the guys we rank in any tier will stay there. With that being said, I thought it would be a fun exercise to see who is performing well from Tier 5 in the Braves system so far in 2021. All stats listed are entering play on June 14.

Ricky DeVito, RHP
Age: 22
Current Level: High-A
Rome Braves: 20.1 IP, 2.66 ERA, 27 K, 7 BB

DeVito is the highest-ranked player in tier 5 and he is doing a lot in his power to jump that tier altogether. The former 8th round pick has made five starts for Rome and has posted a 2.66 ERA in just over 20 innings. His solid three pitch repertoire and athleticism have led him to be arguably Rome’s most effective starter. His 12 K/9 leads the team’s starters and his 3.86 K/BB ratio is second only to reliever, Indigo Diaz.

Cody Milligan, UT
Age: 22
Current Level: High-A
Rome Braves: 28 G, .273/.339/.343, 27 H, 1 HR, 5 SB

There are not a ton of outstanding offensive performances in the Braves minor league system this year and those that are performing well are some of the better known names. If you take out veterans Abraham Almonte and Orlando Arcia, Milligan has the fifth most hits of any Braves prospect so far this year. Just five of them have gone for extra bases, but Rome is the team I see the most and he has come through in some clutch spots and ranks top 10 in the Braves system in R, RBI, AVG, and OBP of qualified prospects.

Brooks Wilson, RHP
Age: 24
Current Level: Double-A
Mississippi Braves: 15.2 IP, 2.30 ERA, 23 K, 10 BB

Coming into the 2018 Draft, Wilson was better known for being Logan Gilbert‘s teammate than his performance on the mound, but he quickly changed that perception in 2018 Rookie and Single-A ball while pitching exclusively as a reliever. Wilson was used as a starter about half of the time in 2019 in High-A and we got a really good sample of 87 innings from him where he posted a 2.47 ERA and a 2.78 K/BB ratio. Despite missing the pandemic year, Wilson has picked up right where he left off in 2019 and has been fairly dominant as a reliever. Through his first eight innings he had not allowed a run, but did walk some more recently. The 6’2 righty has a nice FB/SL combo and while he isn’t a super flashy pitcher, he is seasoned and could prove to be a bullpen option down the road.

Riley Unroe, INF
Age: 25
Current Level: Double-A
Mississippi Braves:  19 G, .265/.324/.368, 18 H

Let me preface this by saying that these are just Unroe’s Double-A numbers. He started the season in Triple-A where he struggled before heading back to Double-A. He hasn’t exactly been crushing the ball, but he has been seeing it well with Mississippi, so hopefully, this is just the confidence boost he needs to make his way back to Triple-A. I still believe Unroe has Quad-A player written all over him, but he could be a name Braves fans see in the upper levels of the minors of their system for years to come.

Gabriel Noguera, LHP
Age: 25
Current Level: High-A
Rome Braves: 11.1 IP, 4.76 ERA, 15.1 K/9

Those that have followed my work know that Noguera is a guy that has been through a lot and one that I am always rooting for. We won’t revisit his story here, but I am very excited to see him succeeding in his current reliever role. Noguera and Indigo Diaz have proven to be a tough 1/2 punch from the Rome pen. Prior to his last 2 outings, he was toting a 0.87 ERA through 10.1 IP. This definitely goes to show what one or two bad relief outings will do to your stat line.


I reside in Carrollton, Georgia and love everything baseball. I graduated from the University of West Georgia with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Management. I have a passion for the minor leagues and have high hopes of visiting as many minor league parks as I can. I enjoy the statistical side of the game, especially sabermetrics. I am also an avid baseball card collector and fantasy baseball player.

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