Baseball America’s prospect rankings for the top lefthanded pitchers in the minor leagues is out, and two Texas Rangers prospects made the cut. Taylor Hearn, the lefty acquired from the Pittsburgh Pirates, along with Sherten Apostel, in the Keone Kela deal is #17 on the list, right behind Joey Wentz and 2018 first rounder Ryan Weathers. Joe Palumbo, meanwhile, is #3 on the list, right behind Braves lefty Kolby Allard.
Kyle Glaser also has Taylor Hearn as his pick on the list to break out, praising his bit time fastball and improving secondaries. Hearn is a guy to watch this year, someone who I would think will likely start the year in Nashville. He’s got a lot of reliever risk, but if he can refine his secondaries and command, he could be an impact major league starting pitcher.
There were two omissions of note from this list among Rangers prospects. First is Cole Ragans, the Rangers’ 2016 first rounder who missed all of the 2018 season due to Tommy John surgery. Ragans was highly regarded prior to the surgery, and while TJS is a hurdle to overcome, I wouldn’t have expected him to drop completely off as a result.
Secondly, and perhaps more surprising, is Brock Burke not making the cut. Burke, acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays this offseason in the Jurickson Profar trade, was said to be in the 11-15 range in a very strong and deep Rays farm system, and had a stellar 2018 season. He is someone we could see in Arlington this season, and hopefully he makes the folks at BA regret his omission from the list.