View photos Amir Garrett (AP)
17. Amir Garrett, SP, Triple-A, Cincinnati
Garrett might be the least-hyped potential ace in the minor leagues. He's left-handed, tops out at 97 mph, throws strikes and generates groundballs. At 24, Garrett is a bit old for a top prospect, though there's good reason for that: He initially forsook baseball to play basketball at St. John's. He let that dream evaporate, and now he's part of a young pitching staff that could include Cody Reed, Brandon Finnegan, Anthony DeSclafani, Robert Stephenson and John Lamb – quite the collection for a team in the throes of rebuilding.
18. Brock Stewart, SP, Triple-A, Los Angeles Dodgers
After stalling out in High-A last season, Stewart returned for two starts, jumped to Double-A quickly thereafter and pitched himself to the cusp of the big leagues. In his first two Triple-A starts, he struck out 17 and walked one. A sixth-round pick out of Illinois State in 2014, Stewart is 24 and just another arm for a Dodgers organization teeming with them. For all the hype about the Braves' young pitching depth, Los Angeles may have even more. Julio Urias, Jose DeLeon, Frankie Montas, Jharel Cotton and Stewart could pitch in the big leagues today. Chase De Jong and Walker Buehler aren't far off. And Grant Holmes, Yadier Alvarez and Josh Sborz are quite the next generation.
19. Stephen Gonsalves, SP, Double-A, Minnesota
Stolen in fourth round of the 2013 draft after a marijuana-related incident dropped him, Gonsalves signed for $700,000 and gives the Twins hopes that after years of producing craptastic soft tossers, the ascent of him, Jose Berrios, Tyler Jay and Kohl Stewart will fortify a rotation in desperate need of it. Gonsalves, 21, is a tall, lanky left-hander, and after dominating the Florida State League, he was promoted this week to Double-A.
20. David Paulino, SP, Double-A, Houston
Just remember: Players to be named later really can turn out to be something. In 2013, the Tigers, looking to fortify their bullpen, acquired Jose Veras for outfielder Danry Vasquez and a PTBNL. Vasquez has flamed out in Double-A. The player to be named was Paulino, out at the time because of Tommy John surgery. Healthy now, he's destroying Double-A with a 1.86 ERA and 6-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Paulino, 22, is either an enormous trade chip or another arm developed by an Astros organization with a faculty for mining diamonds in the rough.
21. Josh Hader, SP, Triple-A, Milwaukee
Speaking of, Hader once was an Astro. Now he's the Brewers' best pitching prospect, an unorthodox left-hander who piles up strikeouts. It's still too early to say whether the Brewers have found long-term rotation pieces in Zach Davies and Junior Guerra, but Hader is the sort who will make room for himself. First he needs to brave the altitude of Colorado Springs and survive the Pacific Coast League. Then, come next season – he's not yet on the 40-man roster, so a September call-up is less likely than not – he'll join the rotation at some point and see whether his funk can translate.
22. Marcos Diplan, SP, Low-A, Milwaukee
At 12.3 strikeouts per nine, Diplan punches out even more hitters than Hader. Why isn't he more highly touted? Well, size for one: Diplan stands only 6-foot. As does Red Sox uberprospect Anderson Espinoza. So let the crowding of the Diplan bandwagon begin here. The Rangers saw enough to give him $1.3 million to sign before shipping him off to the Brewers in the Yovani Gallardo deal. Diplan is still just 19, and one scout said: “Nobody, not even Hader, has his upside.”
23. Mike Soroka, SP, Low-A, Atlanta
Never was Atlanta's strategy to stockpile young pitching more evident than in the last two drafts. This year, it spent its first three picks on high school arms, and last year, it was two, including the then-17-year-old Soroka, out of Calgary. Unlike another famous Albertan, Soroka is not the hitman. Despite being pushed to full-season ball at 18, he has put up a sub-3.00 ERA, and one scout who covers the South Atlantic League said: "I think he might be their best pitching prospect." Considering that group includes Sean Newcomb, Max Fried, Kolby Allard, Touki Toussaint, Tyrell Jenkins, Lucas Sims and the three top draft picks this year, Ian Anderson, Joey Wentz and Kyle Muller, that's high praise.
24. Francisco Mejia, C, Low-A, Cleveland
Very few things excite baseball men more than a legitimate switch-hitting catcher, and to have one doing what Mejia's done – slashing .336/.370/.515 and playing frontline defense – is thrilling. Granted, Mejia is repeating a level, which slightly diminishes the performance, but still: a 20-year-old, switch-hitting catcher who can rake and show off with the glove. Nothing more need be said.
25. Brady Aiken, SP, Rookie, Cleveland
More than two years after Houston chose him first overall in the draft and didn't sign him, Aiken made his professional debut with two scoreless innings. His fastball ticked up to 94 mph and, best of all, he made it through healthy. Issues with Aiken's elbow blew up his deal with the Astros, and his eventual Tommy John surgery – not to mention them getting Bregman with the compensatory pick – validated Houston's tack. Now Aiken wants to reward the Indians' faith in spending their first-rounder last year on him, and with his 20th birthday on the horizon, the Indians won't be shy moving him to more age-appropriate levels, so long as his arm shows it can withstand that.
Source : https://sports.yahoo.com/news/prospect-heat-check--the-most-unhittable-pitcher-you-haven-t-seen-173934679.html