MLB Pipeline Top 100 Prospects for 2017: Cardinals Have 4 on the list.
Of the top 100 prospects rated by MLB Pipeline the Cardinals cracked the list with 4, same as last year. Even better is that 2 of them are the top rated players at their positions. The list includes familiar faces and the addition of an 18 year old. However, one player on the 2016 list, Harrison Bader, was left off, although not to his discredit. Without further introduction, here are the Cardinals in the Top 100.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) January 29, 2017
#6 Alex Reyes
The title of highest rated Cardinal and highest rated pitcher belongs to Alex Reyes. No stranger to the big leagues as we all saw a good portion of him last year. He also displayed just what he can do and why he is rated at #6 overall.
With a 1.57 ERA in 46 IP, Reyes knows success at the big league level. In his scouting report, his ratings are FB:75 CB:60 CH:55 CON: 45 OA:60. his fastball can hit triple digits at times with a change-up about 10 MPH less.
The only real worry with Reyes will always be his command. His upper 90’s FB makes his control problems even worse. However, he is still really young. Reyes can improve a great deal soon and live up to the hype he has swirling around him.
#39 Carson Kelly
Also the best rated catcher prospect, Carson Kelly has continued to add to his potential. Originally a 3rd baseman, Kelly has made leaps and bounds as a catcher. Even MLB Pipeline has said that he possesses the potential to win multiple Gold Gloves in the future.
The Cardinals are fortunate as a franchise to be able to possess the best defensive catcher ever and immediately turn it over to another great backstop. Similar to Molina, Kelly’s offense will take time to come around. So, there will be a season or two of a learning curve. However, he possesses above average potential offensively.
#68 Luke Weaver
Another talented arm on the Cardinals side. Weaver has impressed everyone at the Minor league level with a 1.30 ERA in 83 IP down below. Consistently hitting 95 with his multi faceted fastball (sinker type and cutter type), he can nail his spots. With a good change-up as well, he has devastating stuff. At his ceiling, he can be a great 2 or 3 starter in the bigs.
However, his time up this season was shaky. He had a 5.70 ERA in 36 IP. The Cardinals are not worried about the struggles though because they rightfully trust what he can do. Whether we see Weaver up for an extended time period this year depends on injuries and the like. No matter what though, Weaver deserves to be on this list.
#91 Delvin Perez
A huge surprise to see Perez on this list already as he is only 18. However, there is no denying Delvin Perez’s talent. He has the defensive skills reminiscent of the HoF Ozzie Smith and also adds speed to his talent pool. As for the bat? Well that remains to be determined.
At the plate, he tries to do way too much which gets him into trouble. As he gets older though, he should mature into a league average hitter. With excellent defense, he will make for an excellent shortstop. One side note, he was tested positive for PED use before the draft. If he can stay away and learn from his mistake, he can make for a good player.
Photo Courtesy Dennis Wierzbikki USA Today