“Billy was a guy you could dream on,” Boogie, an old Oakland scout reflected on a young Billy Beane in Michael Lewis‘s Moneyball. There in lies the tantalizing nature of prospects: you can imagine them to be anything. In a 19 year old throwing gas on some slipshod Single-A mound, you can see an ace racking up strikeouts in Fenway Park and a skinny dominican cracking balls deep into the gaps of rookie league stadiums is clearly just a few years away from turning the spacious Petco Park into a bandbox.
But eventually time rears its ceaseless hands and dreams must either be realized or melt into a grim or mundane reality. Prospects have to eventually perform at the show; so we here at Grading On The Curve are running down the list of prospects who could make a major impact this year. One from each team, starting with the Tampa Bay Rays and starting pitcher Jake Odorizzi.