Well, Kyle finally guilted me into doing it. We’re looking at the final 10 players on the Brew Crew Ball Community Top 30 Prospects list. I have to say, y’all did a pretty good job. There’s some new names and still a lot of excitement in the back half of this list. Let’s take a look at the future stars of Milwaukee, if baseball ever starts back up.
#21. Luis Medina, OF
2019 Season: N/A
Medina was one of the Brewers’ top international signings in 2019. As such, he has yet to debut professionally.
Right now, all we have is broad guess work for what the 6’2” teen has to offer. Most scouts see an outfielder who can be average or better in pretty much ever category. The power bat helps him fit the mold of a prototypical corner outfielder. For now, it’s all potential.
#22. Nick Bennett, LHP
2019 Season (Rok & A): 33 IP || 1.91 ERA || 43 K || 10 BB || 1 HR || 1.15 WHIP
The Brewers drafted Bennett out of the sixth round in the 2019 draft. He’s an advanced soft-tossing left who’s more or less maxed out in terms of strength. His specialty is his curveball, a pitch he’ll rely on in any count. Bennett should have easy back-end of the rotation projection.
#23. Dylan File, RHP
2019 Season (A+ & AA): 147 IP || 3.24 ERA || 136 K || 22 BB || 9 HR || 1.136 WHIP
File had somewhat of a breakout season in 2019. The righty put together one of the best statistical seasons among any starter to throw more than 100 innings in Milwaukee’s farm. Farm watchers have always taken a liking to File. None of his stuff is really flashy, a low-90s fastball partnered with a solid slider and curveball, but his control is phenomenal. He even throws the typical meh changeup to keep lefties honest.
When you look at his 1.3 walks per nine and a repertoire that already looks solid, it’s easy to see a guy who can be a fifth rotation starter or bullpen swing man. Although, it’s all but certain that if File works out, it’ll be as an initial out getter.
#24. Max Lazar, RHP
2019 Season (Rok & A): 85 IP || 2.33 ERA || 119 K || 15 BB || 1.012 WHIP
When you look at a 20-year-old who is striking out 119 in 85 innings, you’re likely imagining a mid-90s fastball with a wipe-out slider, right? Try a 89 mph fastball and a dangerous changeup. That’s what makes the young Max Lazar so successful.
Lazar is too advanced for his level. His pitches are insanely deceptive and leave low-level talents guessing at the plate. He also has better control than you’d see out of most 20 year olds. Lazar has a long way to go, but his arrival in the farm was fantastic. Hopefully, he can add a couple ticks to his fastball, which should make him a pain for even better hitters.
#25. Lucas Erceg, 3B
2019 Season (AAA): 406 PA || .218/.305/.398 || 15 HR || 2 SB || 102 K || 44 BB
It honestly feels like we’ve been talking about Erceg for forever. Really, the team only drafted him in the second round of the 2016 draft. He came into the farm with a ton of excitement over his advanced bat and power potential. Unfortunately, we’ve seen little of that over the last few seasons.
Erceg’s worst season with the Brewers came in 2019 at AAA. He set a career high in strikeouts, despite getting 100 less PAs compared to 2018, had a career low for average and even lost some playing time so veterans could stay fresh.
While Erceg’s arrow is definitely pointing down, it’s not as if all hope if lost for the third baseman. He’s shown he can be a solid defender with an arm that can make up for almost every fielding mistake. While he hit awfully last season, it was also his first true taste of AAA (he was sent to get a few PAs in 2017 during the playoffs) and the team has moved him up a level every year he’s been with the team. Perhaps a repeat year is just what the doctor ordered, but it is definitely a season (if there’s ever a season) that will determine is Erceg’s good or a bust.
#26. Clayton Andrews, LHP/OF
2019 Season (A+ & AA): 59.1 IP || 3.19 ERA || 77 K || 25 BB || 1.146 WHIP
69 PA || .333/.391/.381 || 0 HR || 0 SB || 7 K | 6 BB
I used to be extremely down on the 5’6” Andrews. After all, we’re taught that you just can’t be that short and be a pitcher in the majors. Now, I view Andrews as a super hero.
The man had a phenomenal year in all aspects in 2019. He proved to be a solid reliever, handled himself well with the bat and looked solid in the outfield. Andrews is certainly not a true two-way player like your Ohtanis of the world, but he’s a fun project you could imagine handling a couple outs in the outfield in between some batters.
I am pro underdog stories, and Andrews is one hell of an underdog story.
#27. Braden Webb, RHP
2019 Season (Rok, Rok, A+ & AA): 64.1 IP || 4.76 ERA || 61 K || 48 BB || 5 HR || 1.430 WHIP
I really like Braden Webb, but his stock took a major hit in 2019. Coming off a solid 2018, where he showed great stuff in 20 AA innings, Webb couldn’t stay healthy or perform. He was taken off the field multiple times for rehab outings in the lower levels. He eventually found himself sticking in Carolina to work on his stuff.
When healthy, Webb has a great fastball and beautiful 12-6 curve. His biggest struggle is his command. If he finds his way back to success, he looks like a pretty successful reliever, but I’d bet Milwaukee wants to give him some more time in the rotation.
#28. Cooper Hummel, OF
2019 Season (AA): 419 PA || .249/.384/.450 || 17 HR || 4 SB || 100 K || 62 BB
Hummel was an 18th round draft pick back in the 2016 draft. Since joining the team, he has quietly been a regular producer at ever level he’s played at; however, a spike in power is getting him some much deserved attention.
Last season, Hummel doubled his previous career-high in homers to 17. With a real increase in homers, he can now profile as a corner outfielder. While he doesn’t scream Major League main stay, he is starting to look like a player who can have a few good seasons with a team.
#29. Jesus Parra, 3B/2B
2019 Season (DSL): 269 PA || .247/.361/.410 || 6 HR || 9 SB || 71 K || 26 BB
Parra is a fun high-ceiling versatile defender just entering his pro career after signing out of Venezuela. At maturity, Parra looks like a third baseman. He doesn’t run especially well and is big for second base. AS he matures, he’ll add some power and could be a big traditional masher at the hot corner.
#30. Je’Von Ward, OF
2019 Season (A): 423 PA || .225/.311/.322 || 2 HR || 7 SB || 107 K || 47 BB
When the Brewers took Ward in the 12th round of the 2017 draft, we heard one word repeated over and over again, “project.” The tall and lanky outfielder has proved that to be the case. With Ward though, it’s what you see glimpses of.
Ward still has a lot of frame to fill out. At 6’5” he was listed as only 190 lbs. in 2019. As he continues to add muscle, you’ll likely see his power swing rise. He also has a good looking swing that flashes as an average hit tool in the future. He’s still learning to play instinctual in the outfield, but that will come with more reps. While we may feel like it’s been forever and a decade since he became a Brewers, Ward’s still only 20 and has as much potential as anyone in the farm.
Statistics courtesy Baseball-Reference