Keith Law: Atlanta Braves

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With the help of Christopher Crawford of MLB Draft Insider, we have compiled the minor league assignments for all prospects in Keith Law's organizational top 10 rankings.

Due to injuries and late assignments, some minor league rosters are not yet official. In those instances, we took our best guess as to where those prospects will be assigned to begin the year.

Note: Players with an asterisk have been traded since the top-10 lists came out, and they are listed with their assignment for their new club.


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Yu DarvishAP Photo/Darron CummingsThe AL leader in strikeout rate last year, Yu Darvish is an AL Cy Young frontrunner.
Keith Law offers up his win-loss predictions for all 30 teams and winners for the six major postseason awards. Furthermore, explanations for each team are included, along with notes on key players or possible impact call-ups. Award predictions follow the division picks.

AL East

It's hard to pick against a Boston Red Sox team that returns so many of the players who helped them win the World Series last year, losing Stephen Drew but replacing him with one of the majors' best rookies in Xander Bogaerts.

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Marcus StromanAP Photo/Gene J. PuskarMarcus Stroman fanned 129 batters in 111 2/3 innings at Double-A last season.
DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Toronto Blue Jays and Tampa Bay Rays rolled out a number of young arms Friday, led by Toronto's No. 2 overall prospect Marcus Stroman, who is in the running for a rotation spot. Stroman showed his full four-pitch repertoire and has the durability to start, but problems keeping his fastball down led to trouble for him.

Stroman was 91-95 mph over his three innings of work, getting a little arm-side run but no sink or downhill plane. He left several fastballs up, with Kevin Kiermaier hitting a 92 mph four-seamer out to deep right.

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Now that the 2014 preseason top prospect package is complete, here are links to all of the rankings, videos, podcasts and chat wraps.

Top 100 prospects Insider
Index | Prospects No. 1-50 | Prospects 51-00
10 who just missed
Top 20 impact prospects for 2014

Top 10 prospects by team Insider
AL East | AL Central | AL West
NL East | NL Central | NL West
Astros No. 1 in farm system rankings

Videos Video
Why Buxton is the No. 1 prospect
AL breakout prospects | NL breakout prospects
Twins, Pirates just behind Astros in farm rankings

Podcast Listen
Discussing the top 100 rankings
Xander Bogaerts and Mets GM Sandy Alderson

Chat wraps
Keith Law
Astros GM Jeff Luhnow
Byron Buxton
Addison Russell

Breaking down Doumit trade and more 

December, 18, 2013
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Ryan DoumitBrian D. Kersey/Getty ImagesThe 32-year-old Doumit hit .303 in 2011, .275 in 2012, and .247 in 2013.
We've had a slew of minor moves over the past 24 hours, and I figured it would be easiest to wrap them all into one post.

Doumit to the Braves for Gilmartin (trade details)

Ryan Doumit's best attribute was always his bat, as he's never had a real position and his offense has slipped since he left Pittsburgh -- unsurprising for a player like this entering his early 30s.

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Brian McCann fills Yankees' biggest void 

November, 23, 2013
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The New York Yankees' move to sign Brian McCann to a five-year, $85 million contract might be the easiest, best upgrade any contender could make this offseason.

They played a variety of offensive ciphers at the position in 2013, getting just 0.9 WAR (per FanGraphs) in total from the four players who took at-bats for them as catchers, although Chris Stewart, their primary receiver, added significant value as one of the best pitch-framing catchers in baseball.

McCann is an above-average framer as well, so what the Yanks lost on defense will be more than covered by the boost in McCann's offense, especially if the left-handed pull hitter takes advantage of Yankee Stadium's hilariously short right-field porch.

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Royals punished by CBA; LDS picks 

October, 3, 2013
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RoyalsOtto Geule Jr/Getty ImagesThe Royals get punished by the new CBA for being good but not making the playoffs.

By the standards of their own recent history, the Royals had a very successful season. The team won 86 games, their best record since 1989, and they outscored their opponents on a season for the first time since 1991. Their two biggest offseason acquisitions, Ervin Santana (in a dump trade with the Angels) and James Shields (in the Wil Myers trade with Tampa Bay), both pitched very well for the big club, helping the Royals allow the fewest runs of any team in the American League, 23 fewer than the division-winning Tigers. Some young players took strides: Eric Hosmer hit .317/.365/.492 after the team fired hitting coach Jack Maloof; catcher Salvador Perez had his first full, healthy season in the majors and performed well.

There were plenty of positives for the Royals, but because the season went well, some of the structural reasons that helped the team get to this point will now work against the team.

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A secret to Atlanta's success 

September, 10, 2013
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Jordan SchaferMike Zarrilli/Getty ImagesAfter doing little in his first stint in Atlanta, Jordan Schafer is thriving the second time around.
For a consistent contender playing in a large market, Atlanta has had to operate on tight payrolls during its most recent run of success, at least relative to clubs in comparable situations.

Much of this has been because of its frequent acquisition and usage of "free talent" -- players claimed off waivers or signed as minor league free agents who receive opportunities in the big leagues and produce. Although it's not a new practice, Atlanta already has received boosts from three such players this year, in line with what the club's pro scouting department has managed to achieve the past few years by finding players underappreciated by their former organizations.

Jordan Schafer, OF

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By acquiring Scott Downs from the Los Angeles Angels for reliever Cory Rasmus, the Atlanta Braves get an almost-free left-handed reliever while the Angels get salary relief and a warm body.

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Farm systems rising and falling 

July, 2, 2013
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With the major league season reaching its midpoint and the bulk of high picks from this year's draft already agreeing to contracts, it's a good time to re-examine farm systems to see which organizations have improved or declined since my organizational rankings at the start of the season.

For the purposes of this exercise, some parameters to keep in mind:

1. I'm only including draft picks who've signed.
2. I'm going to assume players in the majors right now are going to lose their rookie eligibility and won't count for the next org rankings I do in the winter. (This matters because graduating prospects will hurt a system as much as a lack of performance.)

With that noted, let's take a look.

Rising systems

Minnesota Twins | Preseason rank: 2

The Twins have benefited from big jumps by several of their top prospects, balancing out the promotions of their No. 3, 4, and 5 prospects to the majors this year.

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