Amir Garrett's ceiling has always been through the roof, but there was one pesky problem: basketball. It has only been recently that Garrett has left the basketball dream behind him and focused solely on baseball. The singular focus has paid off; Garrett has excelled in his two years of only baseball and has thusly raced up prospect rankings. He's very likely to be a consensus top 75 prospect in all of baseball and you, great Reds fans, have voted him your #6 prospect.
After some wonky voting, we finally got a voting system down that horrible, no fun people can't ruin. In doing so Tyler Stephenson also walked away with the #5 prospect spot, which is pretty dang impressive consider his short time as a professional. If you think you over voted you probably didn't as many national prospect nerds are also valuing him this high. The Lord Bat Flip of Kennesaw Mountain will hopefully get to show us some more with the Dayton Dragons and acclimate himself to Cincinnati Reds fans.
Alex Blandino, SS/2B, 23
Keury Mella, RHP, 22
Nick Travieso, RHP, 21
Phil Ervin, OF, 23
Highest 2015 Level: AA (Pensacola)
Eye-Poppingest Fact: .409 OBP in 66 PA in AA; 34 SB between A+ and AA
Most Worrisome Fact: .379 SLG in 541 PA in 2015
Alias(es): Mr. Magic, Phlerv
Ervin was the 1st round pick of the Reds in 2013 out of Samford University, and at times in his two years in the system he has dazzled with his raw talent. Prior to the 2014 season, Baseball Prospectus saw enough in his game to rank him the #63 prospect in the game, but since that point he's fallen a bit in the eyes of many prognosticators, and it's somewhat easy to see why.
The OF owns a cumulative .253/.341/.406 batting line in his 1302 career MiLB plate appearances, and while he's not yet spent time in any league known for promoting offense, that's still not the haughtiest production. He's stolen 78 bags in that time, however, and that's emblematic of the kind of speed that has some scouts convinced he can cover CF. And, if that's the case, that overall batting line becomes significantly more palatable.
Parts of Phlerv's 2015 season showed distinct promise, as he bookended the season with a pair of stints that somewhat masked how unproductive the middle portion had become. He bashed 7 dingers in April alone, slashing a stellar .346/.429/.692 in 91 PA in Daytona at the time, but hit just .217/.316/.300 in 384 PA there for the rest of his time before being called up to Pensacola. Still, his 12 dingers ranked as the sixth most in the Florida State League, and finished his season with a flawed, yet decent .235/.409/.412 line in 66 PA in his first taste of AA ball in Pensacola.
Rookie Davis, 22, RHP
Highest 2015 Level: AA (Trenton)
Eye-Poppingest Fact: 4.96 K/BB ratio, 1.8 BB/9 in 130.2 innings in A+ and AA+
Most Worrisome Fact: Stuggled some in short stint in AA with a 4.32 ERA and 1.380 WHIP in 33 innings.
Alias(es): The Rook, Rookie of the Years, Charlize
Rookie Davis was the one of the headliner prospects coming back for Aroldis Chapman in the deal with the Yankees. While the trade was controversial for its return, Rookie Davis is a higher prospect than many think and had a pretty impressive minor league season in 2015. Davis is a hard throwing righty with a very athletic build (something like 240lbs of pure muscle) that the Yankees decided to turn into a pitcher instead of a slugger after the draft.
He's a young guy that seems to have some quality control of his pitches, keeping his walks low and striking out a decent number of batters. Davis was widely respected in Yankee land (which sounds gross after I type it) and was quickly moving up their prospect rankings. I don't see any reason it wouldn't be the same here, and I'm excited to see what he can do in AA Pensacola.
Yorman Rodriguez, 23, OF
Highest 2015 Level: MLB (Cincinnati)
Eye-Poppingest Fact: 112 wRC+, highest in five years, basically best offensive numbers in five years
Most Worrisome Fact: 5.2% in 2015; the walks, they weren't great, and they're going in the wrong direction
Alias(es): Our Man, Your Man, the Tool Box, Y-Rod?
Hey everyone, Yorman Rodriguez is still a prospect. He's been here since the Big Red Machine, it seems, and just spent a full year at AAA Louisville. He's still got a lot of things to be excited about. Even though his walk and strikeout rates trended back down and up, respectively, his batting average and slugging percentage improved, along with his wRC+ and ISO numbers, from his second go-round in AA. Yorman started slow in 2015 (again), batting .237/.267/.420 in April and May (176 PA). After that, he turned on the jets: .309/.356/.439 in 150 PA before ending the season on the DL with a calf injury, so he was unable to show at all with the big league club. He's out of options, so he's going to have to stick with the Reds this season or be gone to some other club. The Reds have plenty of people to try out for a Yorman-like role, but it'd be shocking (and a bit disappointing) if Yorman doesn't spend at least a little bit of time with the Reds this season before they decide to ship him on his way.