About two weeks ago, Mariners farm system standouts Kyle Lewis and Tyler O’Neill cracked the top 100 on MLB Pipeline’ s prospect list, earning the 29th and 36th spots respectively. Today, Baseball America chose both for their top 100 prospect list, as well.
Lewis, who Seattle nabbed with the 11th overall pick in the 2016 draft, earned the 34th ranking on the list. The former Mercer Bear was off to a hot start last year, posting a .915 OPS in 135 AB before a knee injury sidelined him for the season. He’s expected to return to action sometime around the all-star break. This isn’t the first bit of praise that Lewis has received from Baseball America; he earned Player of the Year honors from College Baseball America in 2016.
O’Neill’s hot 2016 catalyzed his leap up the prospect list. His .882 OPS last year in Jackson was the highest he’s posted in his career, which he coupled with 24 homers and a career-best 62 walks. The Canadian outfielder will have a busy spring; not only did he earn a non-roster invite to spring training with the Mariners, but he also will represent his home country in the World Baseball Classic. He’ll join a handful of other prospects as participants in the tournament. Take a look at Tyler O’Neill participating in the Arizona Fall League Bowman Hitting Challenge.
The Astros are well-represented on the list; five of their prospects were named to the top 100, two of which were top 20. They also have the highest ranked prospect in the AL West in right-handed pitcher Francis Martes. The Rangers, who had two prospects in MLB Pipeline’s top 100, only had one in Baseball America’s list: Leody Taveras. The Oakland Athletics also had four prospects crack the list, with middle-infielder Franklin Barreto leading the way at 40th.
Your parting gift is a video of pre-injury Lewis knocking a stand-up triple on his 21st birthday. Thank me later.