MLB Pipeline Top 100: Justin Crawford’s Ranking Rises and a New Phils’ Prospects Joins the List

MLB Pipeline Top 100: Justin Crawford’s Ranking Rises and a New Phils’ Prospects Joins the List Jul 8, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; National League Futures designated hitter Justin Crawford (13) of the Philadelphia Phillies hits an RBI-sacrifice fly against the American League Futures during the second inning of the All Star-Futures Game at T-Mobile Park. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Pipeline –Major League Baseball’s in-house prospect ranking system– recently unveiled their revised Top 100 Prospects rankings at the mid-way mark of the 2024 baseball season. Phils’ infield prospect Aidan Miller saw the largest leap in the rankings, but he wasn’t the only prospect to see a rise. A new prospect also cracked the Top 100 for the first time. 

Here’s a look at how the Phillies’ prospects ranked in the revised MLB Pipeline Top 100 prospects rankings. 

Justin Crawford’s Ranking Rises

Jersey Shore BlueClaws outfielder Justin Crawford’s prospect profile rose nine spots from No. 71 in the preseason rankings to No. 62 at the mid-season mark. The son of former Big Leaguer Carl Crawford, the 20-year-old has exploded onto the scene as one of the more impressive prospects in the Phillies system. A year after winning a slew of awards as the top prospect in the Phillies’ Minor League system, Crawford is having a solid year in his first season at High-A Jersey Shore. 

Crawford is slashing .270/.321/.367 with three homers, six doubles, three triples, 17 RBI, and 19 stolen bases. His strikeout rate is up a bit in the early half of 2024 as he adjusts to his first full season of High-A baseball. While Crawford’s offensive numbers might be slightly down, the No. 17 overall pick in the 2022 MLB Draft is still showcasing his elite speed and skill in the outfield. Crawford is widely considered one of the top outfielders in Minor League baseball.

Starlyn Caba Breaks the Top 100

Infield prospect Starlyn Caba has risen through the ranks and into the Top 100 prospects rankings. The 18-year-old Dominican Republic native was signed by the Phillies as an international free agent a little over a year ago. After a tremendous season with the Phillies’ Dominican Summer League team, Caba was promoted to the Florida Complex League for the 2024 season. Caba is batting .288 with one homer, two doubles, a triple, nine RBI, and 15 steals for the FCL Phils. 

Other Phillies’ Prospects in the Top 100

Two additional Phils’ prospects are ranked in the MLB Pipeline Top 100, starting pitcher’s Andrew Painter and Mick Abel.  

Let’s start with Painter. Painter’s ranking in the Top 100 actually climbed nine spots from No. 27 to No. 18 despite missing all of the season due to Tommy John surgery. The crown jewel of Phillies’ pitching prospects is expected to begin a throwing program later this year and is not expected to pitch again until 2025. 

As for Mick Abel, the 22-year-old right-hander has had a rough season with Triple-A Lehigh Valley and saw his ranking drop because of it. Abel entered the 2024 season ranked No. 49 by MLB Pipeline and fell to No. 60 at the mid-way mark. The 15th overall pick in the 2020 MLB Draft, Abel is 1–5 with a 6.26 ERA and a 1.80 WHIP in nine starts for the IronPigs. Control is once again the issue for Abel who has a 30:37 BB:K ratio for the 2024 campaign. There’s a chance Abel could be moved at MLB trade deadline should Dave Dombrowski look to make a bold move.

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