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Minor League Ball daily discussion, February 16, 2017

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With Alex Reyes on the shelf, who is the top pitching prospect in baseball?

Pittsburgh Pirates v St Louis Cardinals Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

Good afternoon everyone and welcome to the Minor League Ball daily discussion thread for Thursday, February 16th. Today I posted Sleeper Prospects for the National League Western division and working up that project is the main goal for the next few days.

For today’s discussion, consider this. As we talked about yesterday, the injury to Cardinals prospect Alex Reyes will knock him off the spot at the top pitching prospect in baseball when we revise the Top 200 MLB Prospects list at the end of spring training. With Reyes moving down, the competitors to replace him include Pirates right-hander Tyler Glasnow and Rays right-hander Jose De Leon, with Lucas Giolito and Michael Kopech of the White Sox also in the competition if you go by the current pre-spring training grades.

There isn’t really a consensus on that however. If you look at MLB.com’s list, the next two candidates would be Glasnow and Giolito, with De Leon well down their top 100 list at 33 behind Kopech, Francis Martes, Anderson Espinosa, and Brent Honeywell. Baseball America would go with Martes, with Espinosa and Mitch Keller in the picture but Giolito and Glasnow lagging behind, followed by De Leon. Giolito, Glasnow, and Robert Gsellman of the Mets would be the top candidates according to Baseball Prospectus.

Let’s discuss this. I’m comfortable being the high guy on De Leon as spring training begins, but what do you think of Glasnow and Giolito? Does BA have the right idea with Martes? What if Gsellman is lights-out all spring but the other guys struggle or get hurt?