Prospect list season continued Wednesday with the release of Kiley McDaniel’s preseason Top 100 list at ESPN.com. The Oakland A’s had two players crack the Top 100 in Tyler Soderstrom and Ken Waldichuk.
Soderstrom comes in at No. 23 on the list in the 55 Future Value tier. If you are looking for a refresher on Future Value, you can find it here at FanGraphs. McDaniel places Soderstrom’s ability behind the plate behind top prospects Francisco Álvarez and Diego Cartaya, but says that Soderstrom’s bat is arguably the best of the three. He doesn’t think that it is impossible for Soderstrom to stick behind the plate, but that his bat might force him to the big leagues before he is ready behind the plate. He also adds that a position switch to first base might not be the only option.
First base isn’t the only option — some scouts thought Soderstrom could play third at draft time, so don’t rule out other corner spots.
Waldichuk lands at No. 63 and is in the 50 Future Value tier. McDaniel points out that Waldichuk’s fastball plays up from its 93-95 mph velocity and calls his slider and change up as above-average-to-plus offerings. He thinks his ceiling is probably a midrotation starter and that he could be in that role by midseason.
Max Muncy and Esteury Ruiz were among the group of 50 Future Value prospects that just missed out on the Top 100.