Right-hander Julio Teheran topped Baseball America’s list of Top 10 Braves prospects released on Wednesday. Teheran won the Braves’ organizational pitcher of the year last season and figures to be one of the top prospects in all of baseball entering the 2011 season. With another good season he could get his first taste of the major leagues this season.
Included in the list are the other two young top pitchers coming up in the organization in Randall Delgado and Arodys Vizcaino, and two pitchers who figure to battle for the fifth starters’ spot this year in Mike Minor and Brandon Beachy. First baseman Freddie Freeman and last year’s supplemental first round draft pick shortstop Matt Lipka are the only position players who made the list.
Here’s the complete list of the Braves Top prospects:
1. RHP Julio Teheran
2. 1B Freddie Freeman
3. RHP Randall Delgado
4. LHP Mike Minor
5. RHP Craig Kimbrel
6. SS Matt Lipka
7. RHP Arodys Vizcaino
8. RHP Brandon Beachy
9. LHP Brett Oberholtzer
10. RHP J.J. Hoover
Here’s a link to the list on BaseballAmerica.com. You have to register to be able to read the individual scouting reports, but here is the one on Teheran:
Scouting Report: Teheran has an electric arm, the ability to throw all of his pitches for strikes and the knowledge of how to exploit batters’ weaknesses. His fastball clocks consistently in the 94-96 mph range, and he maintains his velocity throughout the course of a game. He has a pair of above-average secondary pitches, with his changeup grading slightly better than his curveball. His changeup shows nice fade and he’s willing to throw it in any count. His curve resides in the low 80s with hard downward movement, as well as good bite and depth. Teheran’s command is impressive, though he struggled a little with his precision shortly after being promoted to Double-A. He works both sides of the plate, usually keeping all of his offerings at the knees and below. Perhaps the most impressive part of his game is his mound presence. He has great makeup and bountiful confidence, backing down from no hitter. Teheran needs to get stronger, but that will come naturally as his body matures. Some scouts say his delivery has a little bit of violence and worry about the long-term wear and tear on the elbow and shoulder, while others believe he throws easy gas and aren’t worried about his mechanics. Comparisons to a young Pedro Martinez are commonplace, and Teheran’s biggest backers think he’s more advanced at the same stage of his career.
The Future: The Braves thought Teheran was capable of jumping on the fast track, and he exceeded their expectations in 2010, advancing to Double-A as a teenager with little difficulty. He may split this year between Mississippi and Triple-A Gwinnett, with a late-season cup of coffee in Atlanta a possibility. Chances are his first opportunity for a job in the big league rotation won’t come until 2012. He has front-of-the-rotation talent and will challenge Tommy Hanson for the role as the Braves’ No. 1 starter well by the middle of the decade.
- Carroll Rogers, Braves blog