ESPN’s Keith Law released his top 100 prospects list this week. There’s good and bad news for the Tribe.
The good news is that shortstop Francisco Lindor comes in at No. 6, and Law states that he could see him making his MLB debut this season. If the Tribe’s 2014 season doesn’t go as planned, trading Asdrubal Cabrera and giving Lindor a chance in August and September is a realistic possibility.
The bad news for the Tribe is that outfielder Clint Frazier (No. 45) is the only other farmhand to make an appearance on Law’s list.
More bad news comes in the form of Trevor Bauer, who has fallen off the list completely and is only fourth on Law’s list of the Tribe’s top 10 prospects. Law even goes so far as to call Bauer’s 2013 campaign a “dumpster fire.”
The most concerning note of all, however, is the fact that the Royals and Twins systems seem to be loaded with talent.
Not only do the Royals have a strong group of young players at the major league level, but they boast three top-50 prospects and have another at No. 81.
The Twins lack the Royals’ MLB-ready youngsters, but they have five top-100 prospects and two in the top 10, including Law’s No. 1 guy, Byron Buxton.
When you consider the state of the major league club and the farm system, you could argue that the Tribe’s overall organization is in one of the worst situations in all of baseball. Stuck in mediocrity at the major and minor league level is a tough place to be, especially for a club with a limited payroll.
The state of the farm system could certainly help push the front office to be sellers rather than buyers if they don’t appear to be realistic title contenders by mid-July.