Relievers are a tricky pick in the prospect world, because very rarely – especially in the Cleveland Indians development system – are pitchers developed to come out of the bullpen.
Generally, after being drafted or signed, young arms remain as starters in order for minor league coaches to fix all their little kinks and test out their abilities in that role. Then in this usual mold, if a pitcher is not deemed as a “can’t miss” starter, then he is relegated to the future career path as a relief pitcher.
That’s why it is often incredibly much more difficult to rank minor league relievers in a baseball organization, mostly because there are hardly ever any prospects in this realm. But that’s definitely not the case for the Indians heading into the 2011 season. [Read more...]