Baseball America released their top 20 prospects for the 2012 Gulf Coast League season, with the Pittsburgh Pirates placing four players in the rankings. The four players were Wyatt Mathisen, Dilson Herrera, Tyler Glasnow, and Jin-De Jhang. Scouting reports can be viewed here, and the list for non-subscribers can be seen here.
Mathisen came in ranked 5th on the list. The catcher was drafted this year in the second round, and went on to hit for a .295/.388/.374 line in 139 at-bats. Mathisen has a very good shot at being a two-way catching prospect. Baseball America noted that Mathisen drew praise around the league for his all-around game.
Dilson Herrera was next, ranked number seven. Herrera made the jump to the US this year in his second season of pro ball, after signing in 2010 for $220 K. Per BA, he led the GCL in runs (41), extra-base hits (22), and total bases (96), while ranking second in homers (7), and slugging (.482). His bat makes him a prime candidate to be next year’s Alen Hanson, although there’s less of a chance for Herrera to play shortstop, with his best defensive position being second base.
Tyler Glasnow came in at 9th on the list. The right-hander was a fifth round pick in 2011, and signed for $600 K. He hit 96 MPH in his final game in State College, after being promoted from the GCL at the end of the year. The 6′ 7″, 195 pound right hander put up a 2.10 ERA in 34 innings in the GCL, with a 40:16 K/BB ratio. Baseball America noted his increased fastball velocity and the steep downhill angle that comes with it. They also noted that his curveball was a plus pitch at times, but that he needed to work on his changeup and command.
Jin-De Jhang was the last player to be ranked, coming in at number 19. The catcher signed for $250 K from Taiwan last year. He’s got a thick build, but has some surprising speed and agility for his size. He’s got a quick bat, and while he’s more of a gap hitter right now, Baseball America noted that he could hit 15-20 homers a year in his prime. He’s got an above-average arm, with pop times as low as 1.9 seconds, per BA.