To wrap up our second portion of our list, we have the newest Mariner on this list, Ricardo Sanchez. The Mariners acquired LHP Sanchez from the Atlanta Braves this off-season for cash after Sanchez was DFA’d. Interestingly enough, this is the second time Jerry Dipoto has acquired Sanchez, as he was the GM when Sanchez signed with the Angels as an international free agent in 2013.
At 5’11”, scouts have worried about Sanchez’s size and durability, but few doubt his raw stuff. His fastball can reach 94 mph while still maintaining good movement. His curveball flashes plus at times and has an excellent spin rate as well. Whether or not Sanchez can further develop his changeup remains to be seen, but the pitch is at least an average offering that flashes plus at times.
In order for Sanchez to prove that he can stick in a big league rotation, he will need to improve his command. He usually doesn’t struggle to throw strikes, but can lose his release point for short stretches and just doesn’t have the raw stuff to compensate.
Ultimately, Sanchez may end up going to the bullpen, where his stuff will play just fine. With a relatively high-floor as a middle relief option, he has a higher probability than some of our other prospects.
Sanchez is entering his age-22 season and will likely start the year in AA Arkansas rotation, giving him plenty of time to reach his potential ceiling as a middle of the rotation starter.
Scouting Grades- Fastball: 60 Curveball: 55 Changeup: 45 Command: 45 Probability: 3/5
Well, there you have it, the first ten names of our Top 30 Mariners prospects. In this first group of 10, there is a good mix of hitters and pitchers, as well as varying probability scores. By vastly improving the top of their farm system, the Mariners no longer “need” these type of prospects to pop.
Instead, they can take their time with these players development and give them their best chance of helping the major league club at some point in the future. As we inch closer to the top of the list, we will be covering more familiar names and are excited to continue to look at the vast improvement of the Mariners farm system in a single off-season.