2011 MLB All-Star Futures Game Roster Review: United States Team: Hitters
Continuing out look at the Futures Game rosters, here are the hitters on the United State team.
Devin Mesoraco, C, Cincinnati Reds: Drafted in the first round in 2007 from high school in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Hitting .307/.383/.511 in 274 at-bats for Triple-A Louisville, with 32 walks and 56 strikeouts. Has thrown out 23% of runners trying to steal. Strong power hitter with a solid glove, improved greatly over the last two years. Age 23. Major League ETA: 2012.
Austin Romine, C, New York Yankees: Drafted in the second round in 2007 from high school in Lake Forest, California. Hitting .302/.361/.410 in 212 at-bats for Double-A Trenton, 20 walks and 31 strikeouts. Has thrown out 25% of runners trying to steal. Good athlete, line drive hitter with opposite field power, scouts like his glove. Age 22. Major League ETA: late 2012.
Nolan Arenado, 3B, Colorado Rockies: Drafted in the second round in 2009 from high school in El Toro, California. Hitting .304/.351/.459 in 296 at-bats for High-A Modesto, 23 walks, 30 strikeouts. Great defensive improvement this year at third base to go with a solid line drive bat with power potential. Age 20. Major League ETA: late 2013-2014.
James Darnell, 3B, San Diego Padres: Drafted in the second round from the University of South Carolina in 2008. Hitting .333/.434/.604 with 17 homers in 288 at-bats for Double-A San Antonio, 52 walks, 48 strikeouts. Mediocre glove at third base, might end up at outfield or first, but bat is shows plus power and excellent plate discipline. Age 24. Major League ETA: 2012.
Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, Arizona Diamondbacks: Drafted in the eighth round in 20009 from Texas State University. Hitting .315/.433/.640 with 25 homers in 292 at-bats for Double-A Mobile, 60 walks, 67 strikeouts. Tremendous power bat with superb plate discipline, a sleeper prospect who has truly blossomed. Age 23. Major League ETA: 2012.
Will Middlebrooks, 3B, Boston Red Sox: Drafted in the fifth round in 2007 from high school in Texarkana, Texas. Hitting .292/.336/.472 in 216 at-bats for Double-A Portland, 14 walks, 54 strikeouts. Track record is inconsistent, but scouts like his raw power and arm strength. Age 22. Major League ETA: 2013.
Chase d'Arnaud, SS, Pittsburgh Pirates: Drafted in the fourth round in 2008 from Pepperdine. Hitting .280/.347/.418 in 239 at-bats for Triple-A Indianapolis, 20 walks, 42 strikeouts, 17 steals. Line drive hitter with good speed, strong throwing arm, very reliable glove at shortstop. Age 24, recently promoted to the major leagues and was replaced on the roster by Tim Beckham.
Tim Beckham, SS, Tampa Bay Rays: Drafted in the first round in 2008, first overall, out of high school in Griffin, Georgia. Hitting .279/.342/.393 in 305 at-bats for Double-A Montgomery, 30 walks, 67 strikeouts. Beckham was selected for the team to replace the promoted Chase D'Arnaud. Beckham has never lived up to the press clippings and scouting reports from high school, but has made slight progress over the last year, is having a fair transitional season to Double-A, and is still just 21. Some hold hope he can still develop into a regular, but I think a future as a utility player is more likely. Major League ETA: 2013.
Grant Green, SS, Oakland Athletics: Drafted in the first round in 2009 from the University of Southern California. Hitting .291/.348/.405 in 296 at-bats for Double-A Midland, 26 walks, 65 strikeouts. Hit 20 homers in the Cal League last year but has been more of a line drive type this year in tougher environment. Defense needs more polish as well. Age 23. Major League ETA: 2012.
Jason Kipnis, 2B, Cleveland Indians: Drafted in the second round in 2009 from Arizona State University. Hitting .305/.389/.525 in 295 at-bats for Triple-A Columbus, with 11 steals in 11 attempts, 40 walks and 59 strikeouts. The former outfielder has made steady improvements with the glove, and his bat is quite special, with good power and strong plate discipline. Age 24. Major League ETA: late 2011-2012.
Manny Machado, SS, Baltimore Orioles: Drafted in the first round in 2010 from high school in Hialeah, Florida. Hit .276/.376/.483 in 145 at-bats for Low-A Delmarva, but just .179/.238/.256 in 39 at-bats since being promoted to High-A Frederick. Very strong defensive skills with above-average power and good plate discipline, very advanced for age 19. Major League ETA: late 20-13-2014.
Gary Brown, OF, San Francisco Giants: Drafted in the first round in 2010 from Cal State Fullerton. Hitting .321/.388/.471 with 34 steals, 26 walks, 54 strikeouts in 333 at-bats for High-A San Jose. Blazing speed, hits for a high average with gap power, excellent defensive outfielder. Age 22, Major League ETA: 2013.
Bryce Harper, OF, Washington Nationals: Drafted in the first round, first overall, in 2010 from the Junior College of Southern Nevada. Hit .318/.423/.554 in 258 at-bats for Low-A Harrisburg, 14 homer, 19 steals, 44 walks, 61 strikeouts. Just promoted to Double-A. Harper could be the best prospect of the last 40 years and ranks with historical phenoms like Ken Griffey, Jr., and Alex Rodriguez. Outstanding power, strong plate discipline, excellent baserunner with good speed, strong throwing arm, amazing polish for just 18 years old. Major League ETA: late 2012-2013.
Wil Myers, OF, Kansas City Royals: Drafted in the third round in 2009 from high school in High Point, North Carolina. Hitting .287/.376/.410 in 178 at-bats for Double-A Northwest Arkansas, 25 walks, 48 strikeouts. Converted catcher is adapting to right field but has been slowed somewhat by injuries this spring. Scouts praise his bat speed and pitch recognition. Age 20. Major League ETA: late 2012-2013.
Matt Szczur, OF, Chicago Cubs: Drafted in the fifth round in 2010 out of Villanova. Hitting .311/.364/.436 for Low-A Peoria, with 17 steals in 21 attempts, 257 at-bats, 20 walks, 26 strikeouts. Football player in college but baseball skills are impressive, blazing speed, gap power, defense developing rapidly. Age 21. Major league ETA: 2013.
Mike Trout, OF, Los Angeles Angels: Drafted in the first round in 2009 from high school in Millville, New Jersey. Hitting .327/.418/.537 in 281 at-bats for Double-A Arkansas, with 28 steals, 37 walks, 59 strikeouts. Best outfield prospect in baseball not named Bryce. Trout is an excellent athlete with outstanding speed, good plate discipline, developing power, and a great glove. Age 19. Major League ETA: 2012. UPDATE: Trout was promoted to the majors on July 8th. If the Futures Game roster is updated with a new player, we will post the update here.
ORIGINS (highest level of amateur competition): Arizona, California (5), Florida, Georgia, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina, Texas (2).