MLB Pipeline continued their rankings of the top ten prospects by position on Tuesday morning, looking at the top third basemen. For the second year in a row, Ke’Bryan Hayes made their top ten, finishing ninth on this year’s list.
The description on Hayes was brief, but they noted that he could end up being a better fielder and hitter than his father. That would be a nice find for the Pirates, because he father spent 14 seasons in the majors. They also noted that the younger Hayes is a breakout candidate this upcoming season.
Last year, MLB Pipeline ranked Hayes as the fifth best at his position. He then got an aggressive promotion to West Virginia as one of the youngest players in the league. Hayes hit .263/.319/.393 in 65 games before going down with a back injury. After missing six weeks, he attempted a rehab in the GCL, only to be shutdown after two games due to a cracked rib, which ended his season. Hayes turns 20 on Saturday.
Will Craig failed to make the top ten at third base, and wasn’t among the four honorable mentions, despite showing some strong on base skills during his debut in 2016. The first round draft pick hit .280/.412/.362 for Morgantown, putting together an impressive .856 OPS over his last 47 games. Even with a very slow start, he still finished second in the pitcher-friendly NYPL in OBP and ninth in OPS.
So far, the Pittsburgh Pirates have had three players make the top ten at their positions. Tyler Glasnow ranked second among right-handed pitchers, while Josh Bell was second for first basemen. MLB Pipeline will cover shortstop tomorrow, followed by outfielders on Thursday. On Saturday night, they will reveal their top 100 prospects live on MLB Network.