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Lynne Sladky/Associated Press
The 2017 MiLB regular season is over, and each league’s respective postseason is already underway.
With that in mind, it seems like the perfect time for one final look at where all 30 MLB farm systems rank, as well as an updated look at each team’s top 10 prospects.
The following factors helped determine the rankings of players and teams:
- Potential (Player): Potential trumps production a lot of the time, especially in the lower levels of the minors and with recent draft picks. Skill set and overall tools are often a better indication of what kind of player a guy will be.
- Talent (Player): As for guys in the higher levels of the minors who are close to breaking through at the big league level, production and current talent are the determining factors, as these players are viewed as more complete products.
- Overall Depth (Team): Having one or two elite prospects is great, but having a deep farm system from top to bottom is the way to build a sustainable contender. The overall depth and level of talent were the biggest factors in ranking each team.
- High-End Talent (Team): That being said, there is a difference between a prospect who has a chance of making an impact at the big league level and a prospect who could be a star. Elite prospects served as a tiebreaker of sorts when two teams were close in the rankings.
We’ve incorporated a tier system to help differentiate between levels of talent. Here’s a quick explanation:
- Tier 1: Prospects who have an elite skill set and legitimate All-Star potential. These are the guys who would receive consideration for a spot on leaguewide top-100 prospect lists.
- Tier 2: Prospects who have a good chance of becoming at least a contributor at the MLB level. This is where most prospects on the following list will fall.
- Tier 3: Prospects who profile as fringe MLB contributors or young prospects who are still too raw to project any higher. Having one of these players ranked among your top 10 prospects is a good indication of a thin system.
We capped that with a quick rundown of each farm system and each team’s MiLB Player of the Year and Pitcher of the Year.
Note: Philadelphia Phillies left fielder Rhys Hoskins (114 AB), Cleveland Indians third baseman Yandy Diaz (123 AB) and New York Mets first baseman Dominic Smith (109 AB) and shortstop Amed Rosario (117 AB) are technically still prospects, but since all four are in line to exceed the rookie-eligibility limit of 130 at-bats before the season is over, they were excluded from these rankings.
The graduated/traded section refers to players who have departed the organizational list since the rankings were last updated on Aug. 1.