One-on-one: Who’s the MLB’s best prospect?

Yoan Moncada

BY JOSH NELSON

 

There’s a reason it took a guy like Yoan Moncada to pry Chris Sale away from the White Sox. The 21-year-old second baseman from Cuba has the talent to be the next big star in the MLB.

Moncada is without a doubt a five-tool star in the making, his best toll being his bat. Moncada is a switch hitter with the potential to blast 25-30 home runs a year at second base, which is pretty rare. He often draws comparisons to Robinson Cano with more speed, as he stole 94 bases at an 86 percent success rate over his first two pro seasons.

Though his glove might be the worst tool in his arsenal, it shouldn’t be taken for granted. Moncada won’t dazzle anyone, but he makes up for it with his arm strength and quickness.

Nick is going to tell you J.P. Crawford is the best prospect. Crawford is good, but he doesn’t have the power and the speed Moncada boasts.

Not to mention, Nick also told me he once thought Mike Trout was going to be a bust. Are you really going to take his opinion into consideration?

I’ll answer that for you – no, you shouldn’t. Moncada is a bona fide superstar. Crawford may be good, but Moncada is great.

 

J.P. Crawford

BY NICK KONOW

 

 

Spring training allows fans to see some of the future stars in baseball. This spring, the brightest star will be shining in Clearwater, Florida, and he’ll be wearing a Phillies jersey.

J.P. Crawford, a 21-year-old shortstop for the Philadelphia Phillies, was ranked as the second-best prospect in all of baseball by MLBPipeline.com behind Yoan Moncada.

But, MLBPipeline.com and Josh both have it wrong. There are several reasons why Crawford, not Moncada, is the best prospect in baseball.

Crawford can flat-out hit. He batted a combined .290 with a .790 OPS (on-base plus slugging) in three Minor League seasons. Last season, just seven shortstops posted a .700 OPS or higher and only three had a .750 OPS or higher.

Defensively, Crawford should be ranked ahead of Moncada because of where he plays in the field. Having a solid shortstop is key in baseball and Crawford is considered as an above average defender in a premium position.

Crawford has the intangibles, too. Scouts have raved about Crawford’s leadership ability at a young age, something that hasn’t been said about Moncada.

I wouldn’t listen to Josh or his opinion on player potential. He’s infatuated with pointless sabermetric stats and disregards the traditional “eye test” when it comes to judging prospects.