With nearly half of it’s season complete, the Florida State League has announced the rosters for its All Star game, which will take place on June 14th in McKechnie Field, home of the Bradenton Marauders.
As always, the teams include their fair share of top prospects, including Daniel Norris of Dunedin, the Blue Jays’s affiliate. Norris barely sneaked his way on to MLB.com’s top 100 prospect list last winter, coming in at 99, but he would almost certainly be ranked higher if the list were made today. The 21 year lefthander has been arguably the best pitcher in the FSL this year, leading the league with a 1.12 ERA and ranking second with 66 strikeouts.
Also making the cut are Jose Berrios of Fort Myers, the Twins’ affiliate, and Josh Bell of Bradenton, the Pittsburgh Pirates FSL team. Berrios, a short, Puerto Rican born righthander with a powerful fastball and curve, ranked 76th on MLB.com’s preseason list. He currently owns a 2.24 ERA and 64 strikeouts over 10 starts and 56.1 innings. Josh Bell, an athletic switch-hitting rightfielder with the ability to hit for power from both sides of the plate, was ranked 61st by MLB.com. Over 226 plate appearances, he is hitting .308/.354/.466 with five home runs.
Other notables include the St. Lucie Mets’ Brandon Nimmo, who is enjoying his best professional campaign to date and leads the league with a .449 On Base Percentage. Left off of Baseball America and MLB.com’s annual rankings, he slipped in at 92nd on Keith Law of ESPN’s list.
Dalton Pompey of Dunedin is enjoying a breakout campaign and was rewarded with an All Star nod. He is hitting .332/.410./497, with a league leading 21 stolen bases. The 21 year old centerfielder barely scratched MLB.com’s tally of the top 20 Blue Jays prospects before the year, but he could find himself ranked among the best eighty or so minor leaguers in baseball if he keeps this up. Pompey was profiled by Jay Blue, one of our editors, earlier this year.
All told the most well represented team was the Mets, with seven players making the cut, followed by the Blue Jays, with six, and the Yankees with five.
Several players earned All Star honors, but are ineligible to play, either because of injury or a promotion to the next league. Most notably, Jed Bradley of the Brevard County Brewers affiliate will not pitch as he was called up last week to the Double-A Huntsville Stars. Bradley was ranked by Baseball America as the 71st best prospect in baseball and pitched like it with Brevard County, going 5-2 with a 2.98 ERA over the course of 10 starts.
Previous Florida State League All Star rosters have yielded several prominent big leaguers major leaguers, names like Matt Harvey, Gerrit Cole, Yan Gomes, Henderson Alvarez, Josmil Pinto, Starlin Castro, Dominic Brown, Ben Revere, and John Axford.