Eric Longenhagen of Fangraphs released his Cincinnati Reds Top 26 prospect list earlier today. It’s been noted before, but other lists have all shared the same 10 prospects that made up the Reds Top 10. Fangraphs list takes a different route with two guys that aren’t in other Top 10 lists. Check out the comparison below:

1 Nick Senzel Nick Senzel Nick Senzel
2 Hunter Greene Hunter Greene Hunter Greene
3 Tyler Mahle Taylor Trammell Taylor Trammell
4 Taylor Trammell Tyler Mahle Tyler Mahle
5 Jesse Winker Jesse Winker Jose Siri
6 Tyler Stephenson Tony Santillan Jesse Winker
7 Tony Santillan Jose Siri Jose Garcia
8 Shed Long Shed Long Shed Long
9 Jose Siri Vladimir Gutierrez Jeter Downs
10 Vladimir Gutierrez Tyler Stephenson Tony Santillan

As you can see, both Jose Garcia and Jeter Downs made the Fangraphs list, while just missing out on my list (they were 11th and 12th), and also missing from the Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus (not shown above) lists. Now, what I constantly say, pay more attention to what the scouting reports say than the number next to the players name. It’s a preference thing with the number, but the report has the information that let’s you make a better decision on what YOU prefer, and really, what you want to know about the player.

Who were the outliers?

When looking at the Top 25 list here at and then the Top 25 at Fangraphs, who were the players that only showed up on one list?

The Fangraphs inclusions

Each list contained six players that didn’t show up on the other list. Fangraphs list included infielder Alfredo Rodriguez, outfielder TJ Friedl and pitchers Jacob Heatherly, Keury Mella, Ariel Hernandez and Tanner Rainey. All of those guys were close to making my list and among the next group of players being considered.

The inclusions

My list included six guys that weren’t on the Fangraphs list. While their inclusions were mostly pitchers, my list is mostly position players. I included outfielders Andy Sugilio, Miles Gordon and Nick Longhi, infielder Gavin LaValley, and pitchers Jesus Reyes and Zack Weiss. All of those players were listed in the “others” section at Fangraphs.


The Fangraphs list includes a Future Value rating (FV on the site). With the idea that a 50 FV rating is an average Major League starter, and a 40-45 rating is that of a bench player/below-average starting player or bottom of the rotation or good reliever. The Cincinnati Reds, at least according to Fangraphs, has eight players who are 50 FV players. There are another 18 players that are rated as at least 40 FV players. The depth for the Reds is impressive, but they aren’t exactly lacking at the top.

Fangraphs has only done their prospect lists for the National League Central division so far. While it’s nice to be able to compare the Reds to the rest of the division, we don’t know exactly how things stack up to the entirety of baseball. Here’s how things break down for the division, though.

The Brewers seem to be a step ahead of the Reds in terms of the farm system. The Reds, however, are clearly ahead of everyone else in the division according to the Fangraphs rankings.

Fangraphs final take on the Reds system

Here’s what Eric Longenhagen has to say about the system overall:

This is a strong system with eight potential top-100 prospects and several near-term big-league contributors like Amir Garrett and Cody Reed in prospect limbo. It has a good mix of high-upside/high-variance prospects and stable, nearly ready players. Most of the several hard-throwing pitching prospects the Reds have acquired over the last several years (and there have been many) have filtered most of the way through the minors with varied levels of success. Luis Castillo, Tyler Mahle, and Sal Romano look like rotation pieces; Amir Garrett, Cody Reed, and Robert Stephenson remain works in progress; while Jimmy Herget and Keury Mella are on the cusp.

The next wave of talent is mostly composed of hitters and, hopefully, enough of them pan out to create some redundancy so that the Reds can trade excess to round out a pitching staff that still needs help getting there. The club picks fifth in next year’s amateur draft and features a very attractive potential trade asset in Raisel Iglesias.

There’s some good information in the article. It’ll take time to pour through, and some of the information doesn’t jive 100% with stuff that I’ve gotten from sources or seen in person, but that’s just how things go in the prospect world. When you see a guy can really lead to different outlooks.


26 Responses

  1. MK

    One thing that has always bugged me about these lists is that after being rated higher in the past a guy like Winker hits .298 with decent power in the big leagues yet he drops on prospect lists. Phillip Ervin puts up better numbers with Reds than his minor league numbers and falls off lists completely. I assume on the tool based lists these guys still have the same tools they had in the past.

    • Simon Cowell

      I’ve wonder why Ervins stock has fallen and not increased myself. He battled to the majors and played well that should certainly be cause for improved status. I guess they see something we don’t that indicates he isn’t as good a prospect as in the past

      • Wes

        Prospect fatigue is main reason. He has a chance if he gets a chance but he’s profiled as 4/5 outfielder so he’s not going to be ranked high

    • Bill

      I think it’s because his 2017 stat line is bolstered by his first few August games after which he regressed below his AAA performance level which isn’t all that encouraging. To me Ervin is a 4th outfielder/platoon player at best, and at worst a player that cycles between AAA and the majors. He’s 25 and already performed at AAA, so there’s not much risk or upside left in his projection. Frankly, I that’s about #25 in the Reds deep system.

  2. Bourgeois Zee

    What are you most surprised with in terms of the Fangraphs’ list, doug?

    What information doesn’t jibe with your own take?

  3. MK

    Looks like Reds signed a 17-year-old Columbian catcher Daniel Vellojin.

  4. Ryan

    Taylor Trammel’s comp is listed as Adam Dunn! That sounds accurate.

    • Doug Gray

      Statistically, at a similar age, is very likely what that comp was made of. No human being would be making that comparison. But, look at the stats they both put up at age 19, and there are enough similarities there.

      • Doug Gray

        Steve, maybe we are talking past each other here…..

        I am saying that the “comp” was made likely due to the stats, based entirely on a statistical model that looks for what other players of the same age did in a similar league.

        I didn’t infer anything at all about stats being better than scouting. And if you think I’m a stats over scouting guy, you’re pretty wrong on that one. I’m a big believer in both.

        And, I actually did read the story Kiley wrote the other day. I then also wrote about it, including my experiences.

  5. MK

    I must be a Human Being as I watched Trammel practically everyday and had watched Dunn at the same age and never once thought of Dunn when I watched Trammel.

    • Doug Gray

      As someone who has met you, either you are a human being, or you’re the best robot EVER.

      I’m not sure if there’s some confusion though, so I’ll state it again: The comparison almost certainly had to be based solely on a statistical formula between the two players rather than someone seeing the two of them and saying they are a comp, because no one would ever say that.

      • Doug Gray

        In terms of how his swing looks, some of the tools – Curtis Granderson is the guy you hear the most. Swings are very similar.

  6. Wes

    Facinating read. Very unique perspective w good depth of explanating view points

  7. Tenyear

    How do you have guys on the lost who haven’t even pitched or played past Low A lol

    • Doug Gray

      Because it’s about who will be the best in the future.

    • greg

      Tenyear, prospect comes from the word “prospective”.

      – (of a person) expected or expecting to be something particular in the future.
      – likely to happen at a future date; concerned with or applying to the future.

  8. SteveLV

    Sorry if I wasn’t clear, Doug. I was agreeing with you and the points you made in the article.

  9. RedsinWashSt

    Doug, since you did your grading before Siri’s big year in the Dominican league. Would you move him up on your list now if you were doing it today. Siri seems to be the big difference at the top between you and fangraph.

    • Doug Gray

      No, I wouldn’t. The thing that has him ranked where he is, his strikeout to walk ratio, was still very, very present in the DWL. And really, the scouting reports are pretty much identical between what I wrote and what Eric wrote. It’s just a matter of how much you want to weight the upside versus the question marks.