The League Top 20s march on with the New York Penn League. In general the list tends to be a bit weak outside the top few names. This is because the top HS picks tend to skip over the league, which leaves it with some college draftees who qualify for the innings and PA thresholds, as well as last year’s toolsy HS picks repeating short season, and some international players in their second year stateside. This year the Williamsport Crosscutters put three players on the list from a team that was their best in years. The team lacked a lot of high impact talent outside of top prospect Franklyn Kilome, but was deep in players who could find their way to the majors eventually.
5. Franklyn Kilome (RHP)
No surprise here as Kilome flashed top of the rotation stuff this spring in Extended Spring Training. He was mostly 93-96 this year touching 97+ and reportedly up over 100 at one point. Outside of the velocity growth, Kilome found a new changeup grip that took him from a hard 88-90 mph changeup that was more BP fastball to a tumbling changeup in the low 80s. He also scrapped his fringy slider for a spike curveball that will flash plus for starts. Kilome’s delivery is low effort and he gets great plane on the baseball and not many NYPL hitters were able to square him up this year. He needs to continue to find consistency and command, but there is a front line pitcher if it works out.
13. Jose Pujols (RF)
Pujols has a profile that makes scouts drool. He is super raw, but he does things on the field that are special. His raw power is plus plus and he can take a ball 400+ ft to any part of the park and has gone 450+ to straight away center field during BP. He has plus bat speed and feel to make mid swing adjustments. In the field he gets some questionable reads and runs some interesting routes but he has a 70 grade arm. He can be ultra aggressive at the plate in one trip to the plate and very passive in another, and he has some major pitch selection issues. His swing can also get a bit long due to an early hitch, but the Phillies are working with him to smooth it out. He will show signs in games that he has the approach and pitch recognition to be a monster and he can already line balls the other way when needed. It is going to take time for Pujols to get to his ceiling, but he is just about to turn 20 so there is time to wait for him to get there.
19. Josh Tobias (2B)
The Phillies’ 10th round pick in the 2015 draft is going to be a hotly debated prospect for a while. He potentially has an average hit tool with below average power and has above average speed, so he can hold his own at the plate. Defense is the problem here. He hasn’t played second base since high school and it showed, there is raw ability there, but he can look lost at times. He is a bit older so his stats come with a big asterisk and he has some second basemen in front of him in the org. If he can stick at the position at an average level there is a slim chance he can be a regular, if he can fake the position in the majors he has a chance as a utility player playing 2B/3B/OF, but it is a tough road to travel. Even if it doesn’t work out perfectly he is already returning good value on a 10th round $10,000 senior sign.