Impact Prospect Ranking: Shortstops by Marc Hulet August 14, 2014 I began the year at RotoGraphs by producing a semi-regularly-updated Top 25 prospects list. For the second half of the year and into the offseason, I’ll be rotating expanded Top 10, 12 or 15 lists (on a far more regular basis) by position: C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, LF/RF, CF, RHSP (tier 1), RHSP (tier 2), LHSP. Whether you play traditional formats of fantasy baseball or dynasty/keeper styles (or you’re just a prospect nut like me), you’ll surely find these lists indispensable. You can read the Impact Prospect Catchers, the Impact Prospect First Basemen, the Impact Prospect Second Basemen and the Impact Prospect Third Basemen. #1 Francisco Lindor | Indians | ETA: 2015 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 20 475 113 14 8 45 81 27 .267 .337 .376 .326 Aug. 14 Notes: Lindor has had a rough introduction to Triple-A after spending much of the season producing modest offensive numbers in Double-A. Still, he projects to hit for average, steal bases and play above-average defense at a key position. Look for him to become the Indians’ starting shortstop prior to the midway mark of 2015. #2 Addison Russell | Cubs | ETA: 2015 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 20 201 55 8 9 17 39 5 .304 .373 .508 .399 Aug 14 Notes: Since the trade from Oakland to Chicago, Russell’s bat has been on fire. Just 20, he has a .913 OPS — and eight home runs — in 31 Double-A games. He could make things really interesting around mid-2015 when the Cubs will have to find a place for him to play in a crowded infield. #3 Carlos Correa | Astros | ETA: 2016 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 19 293 81 16 6 36 45 20 .325 .416 .510 .408 Aug 14 Notes: Correa is a little bit behind both Lindor and Russell in his development (and the season-ending injury didn’t help) but he’s not far off from The Show, either, and could see big league action by the end of 2015. Don’t be shocked if he produces the most pop of any shortstop on this Top 10 ranking — save perhaps for Javier Baez. #4 Corey Seager | Dodgers | ETA: 2016 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 20 439 139 41 19 32 98 5 .350 .402 .617 .436 Aug 14 Notes: Perhaps the least recognizable name among the Top 5 prospects on this list for many readers, Seager could end up being the most dangerous at the plate (which is saying a lot). He could eventually develop both a plus hit tool and a plus power tool. The big question with Seager is over his ability to stick at shortstop (He’s 6-4, 215 pounds). #5 Javier Baez | Cubs | ETA: 2014 (2B) Age PA BB% K% AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ Off Def WAR 21 33 0.0 % 39.4 % .273 .273 .606 .379 141 1.5 -0.6 0.2 Aug 14 Notes: Baez, 21, was recently promoted to the Majors and he’s flashed his plus power potential with three home runs in his first seven games. However, he’s proven that he can be pitched to by wily big league hurlers and has 13 strikeouts to go with zero walks. Don’t expect him to hit for a high average for a little while. #6 J.P. Crawford | Phillies | ETA: 2017 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 19 473 116 20 9 59 64 20 .286 .376 .401 .364 Aug 14 Notes: Crawford represents the start of the second tier of shortstops on this list but he could soon shift into the upper tier. Still a teenager, he’s shown an advanced approach at the plate, good speed on the base paths, a promising bat and solid defense. Just wait for the Phillies to trade him in the offseason… #7 Raul Mondesi | Royals | ETA: 2017 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 18 389 78 12 5 19 95 13 .217 .259 .343 .273 Aug 14 Notes: It’s been a down year at the plate for Mondesi but he’s gets some slack because he didn’t turn 19 until the end of July and is playing in High-A ball. He’s an explosive player but he needs to play under more control at the plate as witnessed by his 95-19 K-BB rate. #8 Arismendy Alcantara | Cubs | ETA: 2014 (2B/OF) Age PA BB% K% AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ Off Def WAR 22 132 7.6 % 25.0 % .220 .290 .364 .293 81 -2.1 6.5 0.9 Aug 14 Notes: Like Baez, Alcantara is already applying his trade at the big league level, although he’s split his time between second base and center field. He got off to a quick start with the bat before cooling quickly. His rookie eligibility is going to expire soon so he won’t be on the next shortstop ranking. #9 Amed Rosario | Mets | ETA: 2018 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 18 259 63 6 2 14 46 7 .264 .307 .364 .312 Aug 14 Notes: Just 18 and in short-season ball, Rosario is all about projection and he’s holding his own in a league populated mostly by college graduates. It’s going to take some patience — and faith — but he could be a solid shortstop for the Mets in about four or five years. #10 Franklin Barreto | Blue Jays | ETA: 2018 (SS) Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA 18 243 68 16 5 20 46 17 .322 .399 .507 .415 Aug 14 Notes: Toronto boasts three quality shortstops among its Top 10 or 12 prospects but a couple of them may eventually move to new positions, including Barreto. However, the 18-year-old infielder has out-hit most of the other players in the league where the average age is 21 so his bat should play in the outfield.