Baseball America has been naming its top 20 prospects in the various minor leagues, working its way up from the lowest levels. We already got into Dylan Cease as the second best AZL prospect and then the overload of Cubs prospects on the Northwest League list, and now BA turns to the Midwest League. That’s where the South Bend Cubs play, which was home to the best prospect in the entire league.
That’s because BA says that shortstop Gleyber Torres, who was promoted to High-A Myrtle Beach late in the year, was the top prospect in the Midwest League this year. Torres was one of the Cubs’ big-time international signings in 2013, and he exploded onto the scene last year by reaching Low-A when he was just 17. Now 18 and in High-A, Torres has not lacked for accolades as he’s made himself one of the top prospects in baseball. He was recently named the Midwest League’s player of the year by MiLB.com.
Torres will probably begin the 2016 season back at Myrtle Beach, and might spent most of his season there – he’ll be just 19, after all. The glove will play at shortstop, and the bat is advanced, lacking only in huge power. That probably won’t come, but he could definitely add a little bit of power and become, overall, a clear plus bat. Pair that with average or better defense at shortstop? You’ve got yourself the recipe for yet another top shortstop prospect in the Cubs’ organization.
Torres wasn’t alone on the top 20 list, though, as Ian Happ – who was number two on the Northwest League list – came in at number six.
Check out the full list and the write-ups at BA, and you’ll see that there are some very well-known, quality prospects on the list. Five years ago, the list was made up of 20 players, 17 of whom eventually made the big leagues.