The Pittsburgh Pirates have the best record in baseball. At least right now, as I’m typing this, they do. The Bucs are an exciting big league club composed with a seemingly perfect balance of youthful talent and veteran savvy, and they have a legitimate chance at a pennant this year. But if we’re looking ahead to 2014, 2015, and beyond, Pittsburgh has a chance to be frighteningly good. Their system has already graduated top-shelf prospects like Starling Marte and Gerrit Cole, and there’s plenty more on the way. Gregory Polanco — currently at Double-A — is one of the brightest outfield prospects in the game, ranked #10 on my Mid-Season Top 50 Fantasy Baseball Prospects list. One spot ahead of Polanco on that list is the 6-foot-6 RHP, Jameson Taillon. Taillon’s projectable frame and elite stuff have him profiling as a top-of-the-rotation arm, and there are plenty folks around baseball who like his upside just as much as Gerrit Cole’s. The 21-year-old has showed some inconsistency this season at Double-A Altoona (3.67 ERA, 1.34 WHIP), but the Pirates, holding to their development plan, have promoted him to Triple-A. He looks to be exactly one year behind Cole, so it’s safe to assume we’ll be seeing Taillon with the big club next summer.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Oakland Athletics 2011 Minor League Review
Overall farm rankings via Baseball America (2011)
2011 (28) | 2010 (12) | 2009 (3) | 2008 (27) | 2007 (27) | 2006 (26) | 2005 (8) | 2004 (17)

Record of Major and Minor League Teams
MLB: [74-82] AL West
AAA: [88-56] Pacific Coast League – Sacramento
AA: [63-77] Texas League – Midland
A+: [75-65] California League – Stockton
A: [76-62] Midwest League – Burlington, Iowa
A(ss): [39-35] Northwest League – Vermont Lake
R: [27-29] Arizona Rookie League

The Run Down
Once again, the Oakland Athletics farm system is rather top heavy, lacks pitching depth and several of their “future” studs have struggled.

Please, blog, may I have some more?