I see that former Traveler third baseman Brandon Wood has again been named by Baseball America as the Los Angeles Angels' No. 1 prospect. The question is, will he ever get off the prospect list and play like the potential Major League all-star scouts have been hailing him as for the last three years? Would he have a better opportunity to be in the big leagues right now if he were with another organization?
Wood has probably been the best Trav in the last two seasons, but I wonder if he even rates among the best players who have come through the Texas League in that same span. In the last two seasons, I would probably rank Troy Tulowitzki, Alex Gordon, Hunter Pence, and Colby Rasmus as the top four position players I've seen. With the exception of Rasmus, who is a year behind the other three, all are now very much established with their Major League club, and Rasmus is on his way.
Tulowitzki, in fact, only one season removed from the Tulsa Drillers, just signed a six-year $31 million contract with the Colorado Rockies. He, like Gordon and Pence, and probably Rasmus this season, made the jump straight from the Texas League to the Major League. Wood, meanwhile, spent 2007 in Salt Lake and is still the prospect the Angels are waiting on to develop.
Where do you rate Wood and who are the top players you've seen in the Texas League the last few years?
More on that Baseball America report: Baseball America calls Travs pitcher Nick Adenhart "nearly ready for the majors." Does anyone who saw him pitch last season agree with that? I'd say No. 8 prospect Nick Green is closer to being ready for the Majors than Adenhart, who still has something to prove in the Minors... BA says the Angels spent $1.8 million to sign players from last year's draft, which was the second-lowest total in baseball. Plus, thanks to the Torii Hunter trade, the Angels will be without a first-round draft pick for the third time in four years in 2008. And so the Tony Reagins era begins as Angels manager Mike Scioscia pushes the organization away from the emphasis on developing the farm system in favor of the Walt Jocketty style of trading for established big-league players at the expense of the teams in the Minors, like the Travs.