MLB.Com released its annual top-100 prospect list on Thursday, and a handful of SF Giants prospects made the cut.
The prospect evaluators (hat tip to Jim Callis, Jonathan Mayo, and Mike Rosenbaum for all of the hard word) agree that Marco Luciano (No. 16), Joey Bart (No. 23), Heliot Ramos (No. 82), and Hunter Bishop (No. 83) are not only seem of the best prospects in the SF Giants organization but some of the better prospects in baseball.
Four prospects landing on this list is consistent with the rankings presented by Baseball Prospectus, but one more than the one published by Baseball America. In Baseball America’s list, Bishop did not make the cut.
The Giants continue to have a strong showing on these lists. I mention that because they struggled to get even one prospect on the list not that long ago. By my math, four prospects are far more encouraging than zero prospects.
Of course, the Giants have gotten a brief glimpse at Bart. The right-handed bat slashed .233/.288/320 (69 OPS+) with five doubles, two triples, zero home runs, and seven RBI across 111 plate appearances while being worth 0.3 WAR. While he struggled at the plate, it bears mentioning that he had accumulated a total of 87 plate appearances above Single-A prior to the season.
Following the return of Buster Posey and the signing of Curt Casali, Bart will likely begin next season in the minors. It is fair to say that he was a bit rushed, but he will get some extra development time this year.
On the other hand, Giants fans have yet to see the likes of Ramos, Luciano, or Bishop. After being selected in the first round of the 2017 draft, Ramos really opened some eyes with a strong campaign in 2019. If his development continues, he may force his way onto the major league roster before the 2021 season ends.
Luciano and Bishop are further behind, but not by much. Neither one has taken professional at-bats above the lower minor league ranks, but each prospect has the pedigree to be moved aggressively in 2021.
Luciano, in particular, continues to open eyes and is regarded as one of the best prospects at his position. When he arrives, the hope is that the Giants’ competitive window will reopen for a long time.
On a different note, Luis Matos, Seth Corry, and Will Wilson were omitted from the list. I think it bears mentioning that pedigree and a limited pro record likely hurt the evaluation for each one. It does seem like the Giants front office views these three prospects highly, and each one has tools that would make him a top-100 prospect shortly if they perform well this year.
The Giants might not be on the same level as the Los Angeles Dodgers or the San Diego Padres, but the only way to catch them is by continuing to build up the farm system. Hopefully, the patience will pay dividends soon enough.