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Top-11 Braves Prospects from Baseball Prospectus

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We get our final prospect list of the winter from the major prospect outlets today with Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus churning out his top-11 young Braves (is that redundant? Young, Braves). Here are his top-11 in our system:

Five-Star Prospects
  1. Jordan Schafer, CF
  2. Jason Heyward, RF
Four-Star Prospects
  1. Brent Lillibridge, SS
  2. Brandon Jones, LF
  3. Gorkys Hernandez, CF
  4. Jair Jurrjens, RHP
Three-Star Prospects
  1. Julio Teheran, RHP
  2. Tommy Hanson, RHP
  3. Cole Rohrbaugh, LHP
  4. Cody Johnson, OF
  5. Jeff Locke, LHP
Just Missing: Joey Devine, RHP (now with Oakland); Steve Evarts, LHP; Kris Medlen, RHP

That's a pretty nice list, and similar to what we've seen from the other big prospect people. I especially like his inclusion of Kris Medlen in the just missing category. I've been high on him for a while and it's good to see one of the experts validate his prospect status. I like Goldstein's cautious approach with regards to Rohrbough, listing him behind Hanson and Teheran (who he doesn't take a cautious approach on).

KG also calls Eric Cordier the sleeper in our system, and seems to be excited to see what he can do now that he's healthy.

Goldstein has been giving his "big picture" look at systems by rating all the players under-25. Here is that list for the Braves (FYI, Escobar doesn't qualify as he is currently 25, not under-25):

The Big Picture: Rankings Combined With Non-Rookies Under 25 (As Of Opening Day 2008)
  1. Jeff Francoeur, RF
  2. Brian McCann, C
  3. Jordan Schafer, CF
  4. Jason Heyward, RF
  5. Brent Lillibridge, SS
  6. Brandon Jones, LF
  7. Gorkys Hernandez, CF
  8. Jair Jurrjens, RHP
  9. Julio Teheran, RHP
  10. Jo-Jo Reyes, LHP

And finally, I like his summation of our minor league system:

While the Braves gave up a ton of talent to get a ton of talent in the Mark Teixeira deal, Atlanta's system is still strong thanks to some very good drafts by the amateur scouting department, and impressive prospect returns for Adam LaRoche and Edgar Renteria thanks to the pro scouting group. While the system is weak in positional prospects outside of the outfield, its collection of young arms is once again the envy of most teams.

Good stuff all around. If you don't have a subscription to BP, get one and check out his write-ups for each player.