Zero Top Thirty

When I obsessed over glanced at The Brewer's top prospects lists this offseason I was hoping to find some reason for optimism regarding the state of the farm system. With the way that these players are ranked/viewed by the likes of John Sickels and Marc Hulet, this was pretty tough to do. There's always a knock or two against some of the best players in the system. "Well Peralta has great stuff and throws hard, but his control isn't great and he gets rattled easily", "Thornburg has great stuff, but he's under 6 feet tall and nobody under 6 feet has ever succeeded as an MLB starter", "Jungmann gets a ton of GB but his strikeout totals are low", "Coulter can hit, but there are questions about his defensive home" etc....etc.....

So, take a look at their top 15 prospects for Milwaukee


  1. Peralta/Thornburg
  2. Thornburg/Jungmann
  3. Roache/Peralta
  4. Coulter/Henderson o_O
  5. Hellweg/Coulter
  6. Jungmann/Hellweg
  7. Haniger/Nelson
  8. Gennett/Rogers
  9. Morris/Gennett
  10. Pena/Pena
  11. Taylor/Morris
  12. Rogers/Roache
  13. Burgos/Haniger
  14. Davis/Taylor
  15. Nelson/Magnifico

There's a lot of disparity here, I figured the top 5 would have been virtually the same.

The #1 among fans and the majority choice among scouts/talent evaluators is Peralta, but looking at Hulet's last 2 Brewer's Prospect lists, he's been pretty high on Thornburg, so the top rank isn't completely surprising considering he's climbed the minors quickly, while putting up very solid numbers.

Oddly included in Hulet's list is Jim Henderson, at #4. While he did put together an outstanding 2012 season between Nashville and Milwaukee, his erratic minor league numbers and age should have kept him from being on a list of top prospects, even in a mediocre system.

Expanding on Sickel's letter grades, SB Nation contributor and suspected Cardinals fan, "TheLoLgen" assigned point values for each grade given to every team's "C+" and above prospects to rank each minor league system. Using Sickel's grades and the point system, we see Milwaukee come in at 20th. That seems fairly accurate, and if Segura was included (I'm assuming he would be a "B+" and be worth 6 points to Milwaukee's score) they would be tied at 15th with Cincinnati. Anyway here's my own top 15 list, and yes, I will be including Segura.

DISCLAIMER: I have not seen any of these players mentioned above perform in person, aside from Peralta, Thornburg, Rogers, Segura and Henderson.

  1. Jean Segura
  2. Wily Peralta
  3. Tyler Thornburg
  4. Taylor Jungmann
  5. Clint Coulter
  6. Hunter Morris
  7. Johnny Hellweg
  8. Scooter Gennett
  9. Hiram Burgos
  10. Jimmy Nelson
  11. Victor Roache
  12. Drew Gagnon
  13. Khris Davis
  14. Mitch Haniger
  15. Tyrone Taylor

There's a really nice balance when compared to the 2010 offseason that featured Escobar, Cain and Lawrie as recent departs. Sure most of the offensive talent is in the lower levels, but between Davis, Morris, Gennett and the unlisted Gindl, Schafer and Green the Brewers have at least some competent call ups and bench bats at their disposal.

Really an extraordinary improvement over where this system was 2 years ago, even if it doesn't have all the "top talent". Because while I do have a desire to see Milwaukee's drafting and developing viewed in a positive light by outsiders, I do believe that in the end, their evaluations will never be accurate enough for us to truly understand what kind of talent is truly waiting in the wings.

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