Talking Chop Top-25 Braves Prospects:  21-25

A Talking Chop favorite, Riaan Spanjer-Furstenburg, just barely found his way into the top-25.

Our countdown of the top-25 prospects in the Atlanta Braves organization begins with #21 through #25 (note that you will actually get 6 prospects today, and that because of a tie, there are really 26 top prospects):

21.  Todd Redmond, RHSP :: B/T: R/R Born: 5/17/1985 Ht: 6'3" Wt: 215
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  X
The Skinny: 2008 Southern League Pitcher of the Year led Gwinnett in wins in 2009, and sparkled in international competition for Team USA late in the year.
The Good: Has shown himself very capable at the highest levels of the Minor Leagues and is essentially a finished product. Excellent control makes him as good at hitting his spots and avoiding walks as anyone.
The Bad: Underwhelming stuff gives him little room for mistakes. Probably had more trouble with AAA than he really should have.
...In a perfect world...he becomes the ideal back of the rotaion innings eater. His propensity for ground balls and ability to avoid walks could also make him a solid reliever.
ETA: 2010. He may return to Gwinnett's rotation, but there's a chance he wins a job in Atlanta's bullpen out of Spring Training.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

T22.  Cole Rohrbough, LHSP :: B/T: L/L Born: 05/23/1987 Ht: 6'3" Wt: 203
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  6
The Skinny:  He was the Braves top LHP prospect at this time last year but was derailed by injuries and confidence issues this year.
The Good:  Cole has been blessed with plus stuff from the left hand side and he also possesses a plus curve that works as his strikeout pitch. While everything else was falling apart this season he was still able to get a respectable amount of strikeouts. Also his control actually improved this season despite his struggles.
The Bad:  Cole is still largely living off his reputation from 2007 where he dominated the Sally League and the Appy League. In 2008 he wasn't as good as advertised in Rome (though his strikeouts were still amazing). He started 2009 on a torrent but fell apart from May onward. There are reports he pitched through a couple of injuries during the year and also reports that he was prone to lose him composure on the mound at times.
...In a perfect world... He gets healthy, both physically and mentally, and he regains command of the strike zone next season to become a top prospect again and a potential #2 starter. 
ETA: Hard to say. He might return to Myrtle Beach next season. 2011 at the earliest, maybe 2012 if injuries and other problems persist.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

T22.  Brett Oberholtzer, LHSP :: B/T: L/L Born: 07/01/1989 Ht: 6'2" Wt:190
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  NR
The Skinny:  Oberholtzer debuted in 2009 and was nearly unhittable for Danville posting a 2.01 ERA and helping the Braves win the Appy League title.
The Good:  Oberholtzer has slightly above average stuff for a lefty with three good pitches: a fastball with good downward movement, a plus change and slider, all of which he has control and command of. He also has an ideal pitcher's frame with good mechanics that should lead to him being a durable workhorse in the future.
The Bad:  Nothing so far. He needs more experience against better competition to see how well his stuff will play up but there aren't any negatives to take away from his season.
...In a perfect world... with command of three good pitches Oberholtzer has the chance to be a middle of the rotation starter in the majors though he still has a long way to go.
ETA: He has time to work on his game, polished as it may already be, though I expect he could move through the low minors pretty quick. Look for a 2012 debut.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

T22.  Tyler Stovall, LHSP :: B/T: L/L Born: 12/27/1989 Ht: 6'1" Wt: 180
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  NR
The Skinny: Spent the year by frustrating and also by amazing all who watched him in Danville in his debut in organized ball, when most thought he would start the year at Rome with the other 2008 draftees.
The Good:  He has electric stuff from the left side with a fastball that already sits in the lows 90s and tops out at 94 at times with room to add more velocity. His curveball is already a plus plus pitch that helps him rack up a substantial number of Ks. Scouts also praise his intelligence and makeup.
The Bad: While he can strike guys out, he also walks a ton -- more than 1 per inning this season. He doesn't have a reliable 3rd pitch at the moment though he is developing a change.
...In a perfect world... he harnesses his stuff, develops a go-to 3rd pitch and adds some velocity as his body matures and he becomes a excellent #2 or 3 starter with borderline #1 potential.
ETA: The Braves can afford to move him slow and work on his control. Look for him no earlier than 2012.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

T25.  David Hale, RHRP :: B/T: R/R Born: 09/27/1987 Ht: 6'2" Wt: 200
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  NR
The Skinny: Was a two-way player at Princeton who is finally able to concentrate on pitching full time. He debuted in Danville and pitched well in limited exposure.
The Good: Hale throws an easy fastball that sits in the low to mid 90s and can get up to 97 at times. Having split time between pitching and hitting in college he has a chance to grow into his role as a full time pitcher and could move quickly if everything clicks for him.
The Bad: Hale throws a slider and change, but neither pitch is really an asset at the moment with the slider showing signs of being a plus pitch. Having not focused solely on pitching in college scouts aren't sure what will become of him. Some think he could start if he puts it all together, others think he is a born reliever.
...In a perfect world... he puts everything together and becomes a back of the bullpen force for the Braves with a dominant slider and fastball to keep hitters off balance.
ETA: Without knowing for sure if the Braves plan to try him as a starter, I will be cautious and say 2012. If they go with him as a reliever right out of the gate then maybe as early as 2011.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

T25.  Riaan Spanjer-Furstenburg, 1B :: B/T: R/R Born: 02/08/1988 Ht: 6'2" Wt: 235
Last Year's Talking Chop Rank:  NR
The Skinny: A big powerful first baseman that the Braves took in the 16th round of the 2009 draft, he debuted in the Appy League and proceeded to be voted the top hitter in the league by managers.
The Good: RSF flashes plus power potential and has shown the ability to control the strike zone and put the bat on the ball.
The Bad: He doesn't have a projectable body and a lot of his success was tied into his high batting average this season. He stats regressed each month of the season and his final month was just 'ok' though he was so good early the entire season looked strong. His plate discipline wasn't incredibly impressive (though it is hard to get a good read on a guy who is hitting everything like he did). He was also old for the Appy League at 21.
...In a perfect world... he becomes a power hitting first baseman and an has the ability to start for a major league team, whether it be the Braves or a trade partner.
ETA: There are several good or better prospects ahead of RSF. If he gets a chance with the Braves it won't be till 2012 at the earliest.
...for a full scouting report, go here.

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