Over at Minor League Ball, John Sickels has released his list of the Pittsburgh Pirates Top 20 Prospects. No surprises at the top, as Gregory Polanco sits in the first spot, followed by Jameson Taillon, Tyler Glasnow and Austin Meadows. Sickels has the same ten prospects in the top ten that almost every other list has, just a slightly different order. In spots 5-10, he has Nick Kingham, Josh Bell, Alen Hanson, Luis Heredia, Reese McGuire and Harold Ramirez.
In the second group of ten, he has Barrett Barnes, followed by catchers Tony Sanchez and Jin-De Jhang. Sickels calls the system one of the better ones in baseball and he thinks it can take a step forward next year. He also ranks players by letter grade, giving Polanco an A-, follow by four B+ grades. Everyone in the top 20 rates as at least a C+ grade.
You can check out other top twenty lists here with MLB Pipeline and our own personal top twenty list from the 2014 Prospect Guide.
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.