Top 10 Prospects (2018): San Francisco Giants: Finding Upside In An Underwhelming System

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

No one is going to confuse the San Francisco Giants’ system as one of the better groups in the league, though there are some prospects that could see their stock rise significantly with a strong 2018.  Will they turn into “A” prospects?  Probably not, but both #2 and #3 on our list could enter the “B+” realm and prove to be potential difference makers at the next level.  Who are they?  Is there any other value?  Let’s take a look:

 

1) Chris Shaw – First Baseman/Outfielder
ETA – 2018
Grade – B

Shaw’s calling card is his power, which he put on display in ’17 while splitting time between Double-A (154 PA) and Triple-A (360 PA):

  • Double-A – 10 doubles, 6 HR
  • Triple-A – 25 doubles, 1 triple, 18 HR

While he hit .292 overall, a 14.0% SwStr% (25.7% strikeout rate) raises a red flag.  Considering his lack of speed, a .356 BABIP, which is what he needed to post a solid average, and the potential to post a strikeout rate of 30% or more there is little chance of him posting a usable average.  The power is there, but that’s about the only skill he brings to the table.

 

2) Heliot Ramos – Outfielder
ETA – 2021
Grade – B

Ramos is a long way away, as the 19th overall pick in the 2017 draft will play the bulk of 2018 as an 18-year old.  Considering his age we simply can’t read into some ugly numbers, like a 31.8% strikeout rate or 42.1% SwStr% over 151 PA at Rookie Ball.  Instead we have to look at the pure upside, and 6 HR (to go along with 11 doubles and 6 triples) and 10 SB just gives you a glimpse of what’s possible.  It would be easy to argue that Ramos is the most talented prospect in the system, and a year from now he will likely be the #1 ranked player with a “B+” or better grade.  He’s not there yet, though.

 

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3) Garrett Williams – Left-Handed Pitcher
ETA – 2019
Grade – B

It’s likely a surprise to many that Williams comes in as the team’s best pitching prospect, but it’s hard to overlook the impressive marks the 2016 seventh round draft pick posted between Single-A and High-A (97.0 IP):

  • Strikeouts – 8.91 K/9 (10.5% SwStr%)
  • Walks – 3.25 BB/9
  • Groundballs – 58.8%

There have been questions about his control, including a 4.73 BB/9 after being selected in 2016.  He obviously took a step forward last season and if he can maintain it at High-A (and possibly Double-A) in 2018 he’s going to leap up prospect rankings.  He’s a name to watch closely, and has the upside of rising to a “B+” if not more.

 

4) Tyler Beede – Right-Handed Pitcher
ETA – 2018
Grade – B-

Beede is generally viewed as the team’s “top” pitching prospect, but seeing his strikeout rate fall to 6.85 K/9 courtesy of a 9.3% SwStr% over 109.0 IP at Triple-A has to cast significant doubt.  He did show more in 2016, with an 11.2% SwStr% over 147.1 IP at Double-A, so that gives hope that he can figure it out.  If you couple that upside with solid control (3.22 BB/9) and groundballs (50.9%), you can see that he could be a solid option (especially pitching half his games in San Francisco).  We’ll have to watch the strikeout rate closely, because if he doesn’t rediscover his ’16 stuff his stock will plummet.

 

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5) Aramis Garcia – Catcher/First Baseman
ETA –2019
Grade – B-

He broke out at High-A, hitting 17 HR (while adding 20 doubles and 1 triple) over 324 AB.  While he failed to homer in his 78 AB at Double-A after his promotion, he did hit 12 doubles and that shows that the power is there.  He showed a little bit of swing and miss (12.2% SwStr%), and that will be something that we’ll have to watch.  That said, a catcher with some power and a 25% strikeout rate?  That’s become the relative norm these days.  The bigger question is if he’ll ultimately be used as trade bait or get stuck behind Buster Posey for the foreseeable future.

 

The Rest:
6) Steven Duggar – Outfielder (Grade – C+)
7) Sandro Fabian – Outfielder (Grade – C+)
8) Shaun Anderson – Right-Handed Pitcher (Grade – C)
9) Andrew Suarez – Left-Handed Pitcher (Grade – C)
10) Jacob Gonzalez – Third Baseman (Grade – C)

Sources – Fangraphs, MLB.com, MILB.com

Make sure to check out all of our 2018 Preseason Top 10 Prospect Lists:

AL EastAL CentralAL West
Baltimore OriolesChicago White SoxHouston Astros
Boston Red SoxCleveland IndiansLos Angeles Angels
New York YankeesDetroit TigersOakland A's
Tampa Bay RaysKansas City RoyalsSeattle Mariners
Toronto Blue JaysMinnesota TwinsTexas Rangers
NL EastNL CentralNL West
Atlanta BravesChicago CubsArizona Diamondbacks
Miami MarlinsCincinnati RedsColorado Rockies
New York MetsMilwaukee BrewersLos Angeles Dodgers
Philadelphia PhilliesPittsburgh PiratesSan Diego Padres
Washington NationalsSt. Louis CardinalsSan Francisco Giants

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Order Rotoprofessor’s 2018 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide for just $7.50!!  Click here for the details, but don’t miss out on the best bargain in fantasy baseball preparation.

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