A quartet of third basemen
A look at the Reds' top-30 prospects
BY JOHN FAY | JFAY@ENQUIRER.COM
The Reds have good depth at third base in the lower levels of the minor leagues. A look at the top-30 prospects, as rated by Baseball America, who could end up as big league third basemen:
8. TODD FRAZIER
How acquired: Supplemental first-round pick in 2007, out of Rutgers.
Last year: Combined to hit .319 with seven home runs and 30 RBI in 47 games at Billings and Dayton.
What player development director Terry Reynolds says: "He's going to start at shortstop in Dayton. I think he surprised everybody here in camp with how well he's handled shortstop. He's one of those guys when you see him, you think third base. He's a big strong guy. He plays with great instincts. He's got enough arm to play short. Whether he'll move somewhere down the line is anybody's guess."
9. JUAN FRANCISCO
How acquired: Signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2004.
Last year: Hit .268 with 25 homers, 90 RBI, 161 strikeouts and 23 walks at Dayton.
What Reynolds says: "Juan will open the season as the starting third baseman at Sarasota. He hit 25 home runs in the Midwest League last year. He's a free swinger who has above-average power and an above-average throwing arm."
22. ADAM ROSALES
How acquired: 12th-round draft pick in 2005, out of Western Michigan.
Last year: Combined to hit .286 with 41 doubles, 11 triples, 18 home runs, 13 steals and 79 RBI at Sarasota and Chattanooga.
What Reynolds says: "He's a shortstop by trade. He had arm problems. In order to protect him, we moved him to first. As the season progressed, as his arm got better, we got him over on the other side of the diamond at third. His biggest asset now is his versatility. He can play anywhere in the infield. He can go play in the outfield. If there's a guy with better makeup, I don't know where he is. This guy plays full out all the time."
23. BRANDON WARING
How acquired: Seventh-round draft pick in 2007, out of Wofford.
Last year: Hit .311 with 20 home runs and 61 RBI in 68 games at Billings.
What Reynolds says: "I don't think anyone knew when we got him what to expect. He's been a great surprise - great body, led the Pioneer League in home runs, went to Dayton due to circumstances at the end of the season. He'll probably start at Dayton. Everything about him has been good so far. He works his butt off. ... He's got the tools for the position."