Jerry Dipoto doesn’t plan to rush any players up to the major leagues. However, this group should be able to show what they are made of over the next couple of years or so. Last year the Mariners had their double-A Arkansas team filled with top prospects. This year should be the same.
Last summer, the Mariners limited his innings pitched to 23 innings in 9 games while playing for short-season Everett team. He has such good control he didn’t walk a single batter while striking out 25.
He will probably start in single-A before ending the season at double-A Arkansas. He has a fastball that reaches the high 90s, though he averages in the low 90s. He throws the curveball and slider. However, he will look to throw the change-up as well.
7. Catcher Cal Raleigh was drafted by the Mariners in the 3rd round of the 2018 draft. He played that summer in Everett. 2019 was his first full season where he started at high-A Modesto before finishing off at double-A Arkansas.
He likely will start the season at Arkansas. He had 22 home runs at Modesto before being promoted to Arkansas where he had seven more in 39 games. He is one of the reasons the Mariners were willing to trade Omar Narvaez to the Milwaukee Brewers. We will likely see him in September and then he will play in Seattle in 2021 from the start.
8. Jake Fraley, the outfielder the Mariners acquired along with Mallex Smith for Mike Zunino last off-season. Fraley might be the best player in the long run in this trade. He played 61 games at double-A Arkansas before being promoted to triple-A Tacoma where he played another 38 before being brought up to Seattle on August 20 for another 12 games.
The Mariners were hoping to see a lot of Fraley in September, but an injured thumb cost him the rest of the season. He will be competing for a spot in the Mariner outfield in spring training.
They would want him to play a lot or they will send him to Tacoma for more playing time. He will see time in Seattle at some point this coming season. Baseball America named him Mariners minor league player of the year. We hope it turns over to him being an outstanding major league player soon.
#9. Justus Sheffield: left-handed starter. The major player the Mariners acquired the last off-season when they traded James Paxton to the New York Yankees. He began the season in Tacoma, but he struggled at triple-A so the Mariners demoted him to double-A where he pitched very well.
The Mariners recalled Sheffield on August 23 where he started eight games the rest of the way. He did have some struggles but showed flashes of control as well. The Mariners are expected to have him in the starting rotation this coming season. How much the eight starts helped him will determine his success in 2020.
#10 Kyle Lewis: Outfielder. Was the Mariners number one pick in 2016. Injuries kept him out in 2017 and part of 2018 otherwise he would have made his major league debut before September 2019.
He spent 2019 in double-A Arkansas where he hit 11 home runs and batted .263. After the minor league playoffs were over the Mariners brought up Lewis as part of their September call ups. In his first three games against the Cincinnati Reds, he hit a home run. In all, he had six home runs in September, batting .268 along the way.
Kyle Lewis impressed the Mariner staff that he is considered to be the starting left fielder when 2020 begins. His speed and power are the two main reasons he is expected to be in the Mariner lineup every day. We hope the best for Lewis this coming season.
Up next we will look at number 11 through 15 Mariner top prospects.