Originally posted on Sox and Dawgs  |  Last updated 2/8/13
Just like his adversary over at ESPN Insider, Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com has ranked his top 100 MLB Prospects for 2013. In there, he has included three former members of the UConn Huskies Baseball team. They are Mike Olt of the Texas Rangers (No. 21), Matt Barnes of the Boston Red Sox (No. 38) and George Springer of the Houston Astros (No. 57). Here's what he has to say about Olt who comes in as the No. 2 prospect in the Rangers organization: Scouting Grades (present/future): Hit: 4/5 | Power: 5/6 | Run: 3/3 | Arm: 6/6 | Field: 5/5 | Overall: 5/6 There are those who feel Olt is ready to play every day at third base in the big leagues, and could do so for a number of teams. The issue for Olt is that the Rangers aren't one of them, with Adrian Beltre standing in his way at the hot corner. When he was up briefly in 2012, he played some first base and some corner outfield, but that's not a condemnation of his skills at third. His hands, range and arm, the last of which being his best defensive tool, all play very well at that position, leaving little doubt about his ability to stay there long-term. Olt may not hit for a really high average, and fans should be prepared for a good amount of strikeouts, but he'll also draw a ton of walks and is a better all-around hitter than many anticipated. The power is legit, too, and it's not a projection. Olt's ready to hit the ball out to any field at any time. All he needs is a regular opportunity to do so. To continue reading if you're on the home page, please click on the continue reading button below. Here's what he has to say about Barnes who comes in as the No. 3 prospect for the Red Sox: Scouting Grades* (present/future): Fastball: 6/7 | Curveball: 5/6 | Changeup: 4/5 | Control: 5/6 | Overall: 5/6 This University of Connecticut product had a solid first full season of pro ball in 2012, including a visit to the Futures Game, though he clearly ran out of gas and struggled a bit in the second half of the season. Barnes has everything a team is looking for in a future frontline starter: arm strength, good overall stuff and even a feel for pitching. He isn’t afraid to go right after hitters or go inside, especially with his plus fastball that touches 96 mph. His tight downer curve has the chance to be an out pitch as well and while his changeup is clearly his third pitch, it’s improving and should be an average offering in the future. With good overall command, it shouldn’t take him too long to be ready for Boston. Here's what he has to say about Springer who comes in as the No. 2 prospect in the Astros organization: Scouting Grades* (present/future): Hit: 4/5 | Power: 5/6 | Run: 6/6 | Arm: 6/6 | Field: 5/6 | Overall: 5/6 Power and speed. It’s a combination always in high demand in a player, but often difficult to find. But there’s no question Springer has plenty of both, and not the raw kind of tools that never show up. His outstanding bat speed allows the University of Connecticut product to drive the ball to all fields, with plenty of power to leave the yard regularly. While he does tend to strike out a good amount, most feel he’ll hit enough to tap into that power and hit for a little average. His speed is legit and he should continue to be a threat on the basepaths and a well above-average defensive center fielder, though he has the arm for right field should that be the spot the Astros need him to play. He gets very high marks for his makeup and energy. Springer went 20-20 in his first full season of pro ball and there’s no reason to think that won’t be a regular occurrence for him in the future. Follow Ian on Twitter @soxanddawgs. And be sure to like us on Facebook as well.
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