(1090 The Fan) – MLB.com has released its annual list of the top 100 prospects, and this year five Mariners up-and-comers made the list — including one in the top five and another in the top 20.
#5 – Taijuan Walker, RHP
-Walker went 7-10 for the Class AA Jackson Generals in 2012, posting a 4.69 ERA … an off-year for Walker who threw 113 strikeouts in 18 starts the year before while posting a 1.12 WHIP (walks plus hits per inning). Walker was selected 43rd overall in the first round of the 2010 draft.
#18 – Danny Hultzen, LHP
-Hultzen split time between Jackson and Tacoma (AAA) in 2012; For the Generals he won eight of the 13 games he started with an ERA of 1.19. Hultzen was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 10th round of the 2008 draft but declined. Instead, Hultzen went to the University of Virginia to pitch and the Mariners would draft him in the first round of the 2011 draft.
#23 – Mike Zunino, C
-Getting right to work almost immediately after being drafted, Zunino made 110 at bats in Everett for the AquaSox belting 10 home runs and driving in 35 RBIs. But what may have been the most impressive stat from Zunino’s professional debut season in Everett (before finishing up in Jackson) was his .474 on-base percentage. Zunino was the third-overall pick in the 2012 draft.
#47 – Nick Franklin, SS
-The 21-year-old Franklin already has 1,403 at bats in the minor leagues in four seasons (that’s roughly 351 per year) with a .283 average. Between JAckson and Tacoma last year, Franklin hit .278 with a .347 on-base percentage. The former Florida high school star was selected 27th in the 2009 draft by the Mariners.
#61 – James Paxton
-Paxton, a British Columbia-native, had a solid 2012 campaign in Jackson starting 21 games with 106.1 innings of work under his belt. He went 9-4 with a 3.05 ERA and 110 strikeouts. Paxton was selected by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 1st round of the 2009 draft but declined. He was selected in the 4th round by the Mariners a year later.
MLB.com’s entire list
-Chris Coyle, 1090 The Fan
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