Top 5 Prospects for 2015: Cleveland Indians by Marc Hulet February 20, 2015 This 30-part series will look at the projected Top 5 freshman contributors for each big league club for the year ahead. The rankings take into consideration a mixture of ceiling, readiness and potential playing time allocation, which is to say some players with lower ceilings may be ranked ahead of others with higher ceilings because they project to have a greater impact in the coming season. In a Nutshell: The bad news is that the Indians don’t have many intriguing prospect arms. The good news is that the organization boasts some solid offensive prospects and could receive respectable emergency coverage at any position on the field. The Top 5 Freshman for 2015 1. Francisco Lindor, SS: Jose Ramirez, now a sophomore, laid claim to the shortstop gig in 2014 and enters the year as the favorite to play every day at the position in ’15. However, he has yet to prove himself at the big league level at the plate and in the field so Lindor, the organization’s top prospect, could easily slide into the gig with a strong start to the year. The 21-year-old Puerto Rican infielder split the 2014 season between Double-A and Triple-A and should develop into a plus defender in the Majors. He doesn’t have much power but he hits for a decent average, occasionally hits the ball out of the park and can steal 20+ bases. 2. James Ramsey, OF: Acquired last season from St. Louis, Ramsey is a strong defensive outfielder with excellent makeup and flashes some left-handed pop. The young outfielder doesn’t hit overly well against southpaws so he’ll likely be a part of a platoon, at least early on in his career. The Indians’ current outfield set-up doesn’t really work in the rookie’s favor with all three starters swinging from the left side of the plate. 3. Erik Gonzalez, SS: Gonzalez isn’t a “big named” prospect but he had a breakout season in 2014 while splitting the year between High-A and Double-A. The 23-year-old infielder has some gap pop and can steal 20+ bags. He also has quite a bit of versatility and has experience playing every position in the field. Most of his time has been spent on the left side of the infield at third base and shortstop. 4. Jesus Aguilar, 1B: The 24-year-old Aguilar had a disappointing big league debut in 2014 (19 games) but he produced an OPS of more than .900 at Triple-A. With Nick Swisher coming off of a poor 2014 performance, the rookie first baseman should be “on call” at Triple-A and has the pop to produce 20 home runs or more at the big league level if he can make enough contact. He’s also improved his on-base skills in recent years. 5. Giovanny Urshela, 3B: Incumbent third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall rebounded from a poor 2013 season to have a respectable campaign in ’14. However, his contributions have been modest considering both his offence and defence. If he can’t take another step forward early on in 2015, it could provide Urshela and opportunity to prove himself. A solid defender, the rookie improved his offence in 2014 while spending most of the season in Triple-A. He makes good contact and drove the ball more consistently last year.