Los Angeles Angels 2019 Preseason Top 10

Los Angeles Angels 2019 Preseason Top 10

1)

Player: Jo Adell
Position(s): OF Opening Day Age: 19 2018 Highest Level: AA
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 6’3” Weight: 215 lbs.
Quick Report: Adell earned playing time across three levels a year ago and doesn’t turn 20 until a few days after Opening Day. There may not be anyone with the tools to match Adell, but he has really started to allow them to play in game action already. He has plus raw power that he is already tapping into and has shown the ability to hit for contact, although he struggled a bit in his short stint at AA. The bat can get long at times and he does not take enough walks, but there is plenty of bat speed and power to outweigh those concerns. He has the legs to steal bags and cover a ton of ground in center, where is reads allow him to profile as a guy who will stick there. If he does have to move off center for any reason (Mike Trout perhaps) then he has more than enough arm to play right.

2)

Player: Griffin Canning
Position(s): RHP Opening Day Age: 22 2018 Highest Level: AAA
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 6’1” Weight: 180 lbs.
Quick Report: 125/44, that was Canning’s K/BB rate last season. This was a guy who fell to the 47th overall pick after long being thought of as a sure fire first rounder much of his college career up the road at UCLA. He didn’t pitch in 2017, his draft year, but made his debut in High A last year before quickly getting the bump to AA and eventually AAA. Yes, he made AAA in his first season of playing pro ball, and it was the first place to really provide him a challenge. He has a fastball that sits in the mid-90s to go with a plus slider, solid curve, and a change that could become an above average pitch. There is a real chance he makes it to Anaheim early this season where he could find himself in the middle of that rotation.

3)

Player: Brandon Marsh
Position(s): OF Opening Day Age: 21 2018 Highest Level: High A
Bats: Left Throws: Right Height: 6’2” Weight: 215 lbs.
Quick Report: A stress fracture in his back delayed Marsh’s pro debut and didn’t make his full season debut until a season ago. Despite this, he made his way to High A and could be on track to start the year in AA thanks to his excellent athleticism. He has plus raw power that he has yet to really tap into during games, but his slightly open stance does allow him to see the ball well and draws a fair share of walks. The loft in his swing suggests the game power will certainly come, and he could make for the third piece of an incredibly impressive outfield of Trout, Adell, and Marsh. He has the athleticism to play center, although I don’t think he has the instincts to stay there, instead I see his future being in right thanks to his cannon of an arm.

4)

Jahmai Jones
Jam Jones with the Mesa Solar Sox. Courtesy: Aaron Whelan
Player: Jahmai Jones
Position(s): OF/2B Opening Day Age: 21 2018 Highest Level: AA
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 5’11” Weight: 210 lbs.
Quick Report: Better known as Jam, Jones doesn’t lack the bat skills or athleticism to be a quality ballplayer, but the defensive abilities may hold him back. He can drive the ball to all fields, staying inside the ball well allowing him to get plenty of XBHs to right field. There isn’t much in terms or true power in the bat, although he may be able to run into 15 or so home runs in time. He was an infielder in high school but moved to outfield in pro ball as many felt he did not have the footwork to stay on the dirt. He never really developed good reads in center so the Angels sent him to the AFL to work on his transition back to the infield. If he can become a good enough a defender to simply not be a liability, he will be a quality piece in a much improved Angels system.

5)

Player: Jordyn Adams
Position(s): OF Opening Day Age: 19 2018 Highest Level: Rookie
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 6’2” Weight: 180
Quick Report: I watched a good amount of Adams at last year’s NHSI and really didn’t think he was going to be a high enough pick to keep him from his commitment to play football and baseball at North Carolina. The Angels pulled the trigger on him at 17 and went over slot to $4.1M to get him signed. Adams can absolutely fly, putting up ridiculous home to first numbers, and that has translated into making him a solid center fielder at the current time even though his reads aren’t all that polished. There were plenty of questions as to how well he could handle quality pitching, but the NHSI helped put some of those concerns to bed, as did his pro debut. He has a leg kick that gets him out on his front foot a bit much and the timing between hands and foot are inconsistent, something he will need to improve if he is to tap into his average-to-better raw power.

6)

Player: Jose Suarez
Position(s): LHP Opening Day Age: 21 2018 Highest Level: AAA
Bats: Left Throws: Left Height: 5’10” Weight: 225 lbs.
Quick Report: A 5’10” lefty sitting in the high-80s two seasons ago, he suddenly got an uptick to sit in the mid-90s a season ago. This helped him follow Canning as a guy who started the year in High A but ended in the AAA Salt Lake rotation. The change is a plus pitch with plenty of movement, and the curve is coming along to become a solid out pitch. He gets plenty of leg drive in his delivery and repeats it well while his 3/4 slot allows the fastball and change to run arm side, but also creates good plane despite his shorter stature.

7)

Player: Luis Rengifo
Position(s): SS/2B Opening Day Age: 21 2018 Highest Level: AAA
Bats: Switch Throws: Right Height: 5’10” Weight: 195 lbs.
Quick Report: Already with his third team, originally signing with the Mariners before being dealt to the Rays in 2017 and then to the Angels as a PTBNL in the C.J. Cron deal, Rengifo is quickly proving to be a guy that could be a steal. He will never hit for power, but his other four tools are average or better. Plenty still feel he will be able to stick at short, although some don’t feel the footwork or arm will ever be quite enough to stick there. Given he is a switch-hitter that gets the bat to the ball well, I think he will be an average starter or very good utility guy who can play short well enough at times.

8)

Player: Matt Thaiss
Position(s): 1B Opening Day Age: 23 2018 Highest Level: AAA
Bats: Left Throws: Right Height: 5’11” Weight: 215 lbs.
Quick Report: A guy who is more hit over power is somewhat rare at first base, although he did improve the power last season without seeing much dip in his swing and miss numbers. The wheels and fielding ability won’t ever be great, even at first, but he can be a capable option at the position. He has a quick bat that covers the zone well, so he could be a guy that hits close to .290 or so in time at the big league level, and if he can improve his power numbers to 20+, which I think he will based on his pure strength, he could become at least a league average bat at first.

9)

Player: Jeremiah Jackson
Position(s): SS/3B Opening Day Age: 18 2018 Highest Level: Rookie
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 6’ 175 lbs.
Quick Report: Still very raw, Jackson has the upside of being a very good hitter who just might be able to stick at short. The upside would be for his plus speed to transition into better quickness and range at short and his long frame fills out to tap into his above-average raw power. The downside is the strength saps his speed and range, forcing him to move to third where he would have more than enough arm. The bat is quick to the zone and is a good, line drive swing that should allow him to make consistent contact throughout his career.

10)

Player: D’Shawn Knowles
Position(s): OF Opening Day Age: 18 2018 Highest Level: Rookie
Bats: Switch Throws: Right Height: 6’ Weight: 165 lbs.
Quick Report: Knowles is not big, but the quick bat allows him to drive the ball pretty well and the loft suggests there is more power to come. The bat path is a bit long, although that has was not an issue against Rookie level pitching a season ago. He doesn’t’ have Jordyn Adams speed, but he has plenty to allow him to cover a lot of ground on the bases and in the field, where he can play all three outfield spots including a quality center field.

Others of Note:

Michael Hermosillo – OF – 23 – MLB
Ty Buttrey – RHP – 25 – MLB
Livan Soto – SS – 18 – Rookie
Kevin Maitan – 3B/SS – 18 – Rookie
Jose Soriano – RHP – 20 – Low A
Chris Rodriguez – RHP – 20 – DNP
Leonardo Rivas – SS – 21 – Low A
Patrick Sandoval – LHP – 22 – AA

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