The Braves have the top farm system in all of baseball, according to the experts at MLB Pipeline, and part of that ranking is because of their wealth of talented young pitchers, several of whom will be on display with Double-A Mississippi this season. The following is a transcript of
The Braves have the top farm system in all of baseball, according to the experts at MLB Pipeline, and part of that ranking is because of their wealth of talented young pitchers, several of whom will be on display with Double-A Mississippi this season. The following is a transcript of a segment from this week's episode of their Pipeline podcast, in which the experts discuss the Braves' pitching prospects.
Tim McMaster: The one other roster I wanted to touch on was Mississippi, and that's the Braves' Double-A team. They only have two Top 100 guys, but I just want to focus on the pitching rotation as a whole. You have Kolby Allard and Mike Soroka -- 53 and 78 on the Top 100. But then there's Max Fried, who every Braves fan anywhere that follows prospects thinks should be in the Top 100. And then Patrick Weigel is there as well.
You mentioned some lower level Major League rosters, rotations, and how Minor League teams stack up. I've kind of joked around about the Padres, and I'm not afraid to mention that on the air because the Padres will admit that they're in rebuild mode right now. But I think if you took those four guys against the Padres, obviously they're not going to have as much success, but as far as the upside and the talent and the stuff, that's a pretty impressive rotation going down in Mississippi.
• Braves' Top 30 prospects
Jonathan Mayo: Right, keep in mind that the Padres' rotation is more placeholders. They have talent, but it's a little further away. I think what kind of makes this more interesting in Mississippi than just a collection of talent, which is interesting enough to talk about, is that Allard, Soroka and Fried were all in the South Atlantic League in the Low-A, and they double jumped them up to Mississippi. I thought that they'd start the year in High-A and then earn a promotion after even a month or two, but all of them just have an advanced feel for pitching. Fried is a tiny bit older, but he missed like two years of competitive pitching with Tommy John and then coming back from it, and then he was traded and the Braves were erring on the side of caution, that all of them threw really, really well at the end of last year. Rome went on to win the South Atlantic League title.
They came into spring, Allard is a guy who always, that's why he was considered a potential top of the Draft type pick before he had back trouble. His stuff, plus his feel for pitching makes him really, really interesting. Soroka, also, back from Canada, still real good feel for pitching. Tall, projectable guy. So there's some ceiling here, along with them figuring things out.
You're right, Fried and Ronald Acuna are the two guys who probably I heard the most from Braves fans about not being on the [Top] 100. Now Acuna is now on the Top 100 after some of the graduations. Fried is not going to be that far behind, and I think that if he goes out and pitches the way he's capable of, we'll adjust midseason and he'll move way up the list. Weigel is kind of forgotten, but he's pretty good. Solid. And there's no shame in being a No. 4 starter in this rotation. The fact that Travis Demeritte is on that team too, who is a pretty talented second baseman.
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