Happy holidays! For your present this year, I’m pushing out the Top 50 First Year Player Prospects. I chose those words precisely because rankings to me are like childbirth. Painful. Everybody wants to see. And then your in-laws complain about the name you picked out. Wonderful! For reals though, these specs are the most unsurest of an unsure bunch, so tiers are chunked in tens. I won’t put up much of a fuss within tiers, but if you want to talk about a player being in the wrong tier altogether, I think that’s a discussion worth having. I’ve already gone over my Top 10 First Year Player Prospects, and in that intro I talked a little about where my head’s at when I do these. (Insert “up my ass” joke here). Enjoy!

11. Travis Swaggerty, OF | ETA: 2021
12. Jonathan India, 3B | ETA: 2020
13. Xavier Edwards, 2B | ETA: 2022
14. Jordan Groshans, 3B | ETA: 2022
15. Nico Hoerner, 2B | ETA: 2020
16. Jordyn Adams, OF | ETA: 2022
17. Matthew Liberatore, LHP | ETA: 2023
18. Cole Winn, RHP | ETA: 2023
19. Alek Thomas, OF | ETA: 2022
20. Marco Luciano, SS | ETA: 2023

Swaggerty kicks off the next tier with a nice combination of power and speed from center field. India follows with a low risk/reward profile that should move quickly through the minors. Then we have a run of high schoolers with distant ETAs. From that group, Edwards and Adams have 80-grade speed. Wheels don’t age well, but those two could potentially impact the steals category on arrival. Luciano is the first international teenager I’m taking this year.

21. Parker Meadows, OF | ETA: 2021
22. Kyler Murray, OF | ETA: 2021
23. Brady Singer, RHP | ETA: 2021
24. Orelvis Martinez, SS | ETA: 2023
25. Malcolm Nunez, 3B | ETA: 2023
26. Jeremiah Jackson, 3B | ETA: 2022
27. Grant Lavigne, 1B | ETA: 2022
28. Triston Casas, 1B | ETA: 2022
29. Greyson Jenista, OF | ETA: 2021
30. Connor Scott, OF | ETA: 2023

This tier is the most interesting to me. Martinez and Nunez are great international specs to target in the late second/early third rounds. They both have a ton of offensive upside from the left side of the dirt. Then we have a pair of first basemen with plus power in Lavigne and Casas. Kyler Murray is a gigantic crapshoot, but he’s obviously a freak athlete. I probably won’t touch him myself (in drafts that is) but on pure tools he’s still in that top 25.

31. Grayson Rodriguez, RHP | ETA: 2023
32. Brice Turang, SS | ETA: 2022
33. Nick Schnell, OF | ETA: 2022
34. Anthony Seigler, C | ETA: 2023
35. Ryan Weathers, LHP | ETA: 2023
36. Mason Denaburg, RHP | ETA: 2023
37. Jonathan Ornelas, SS | ETA: 2023
38. Logan Gilbert, RHP | ETA: 2021
39. Noah Naylor, C | ETA: 2023
40. Jameson Hannah, OF | ETA: 2021

There are a bunch of pitchers in this tier – which is funny because if I was actually drafting, this is where I’d take my first arm. I like Rodriguez’s fastball/slider combo for the strikeout potential. Turang and Schnell are both going to be projects, but the payoff could be above-average pop and speed up the middle.

41. Ryder Green, OF | ETA: 2022
42. Blaze Alexander, SS | ETA: 2022
43. Tristan Pompey, OF | ETA: 2021
44. Steele Walker, OF | ETA: 2021
45. Nick Decker, OF | ETA: 2022
46. Kody Clemens, 2B | ETA: 2021
47. Daniel Lynch, LHP | ETA: 2021
48. Jackson Kowar, RHP | ETA: 2021
49Kyle Isbel, OF | ETA: 2021
50Noelvi Marte, SS | ETA: 2023
51. Owen Sharts, RHP | ETA: 2023 **

The most interesting name in this tier is Clemens. Yes, he’s related. Sometimes prospects play above their raw tools thanks to plus makeup or grit. Clemens appears to be one of those. We’ll have to wait until some other year for Sharts to get drafted (thanks to Matt for pointing out he opted for college). I’m forming a prayer nonagon that he makes it to the pros just so I can hear this – “Owen Sharts on the mound.”