Futures Game rosters were announced today. We’ve compiled them and added them to a tab on THE BOARD for your perusal. There you’ll have access to things like our scouting reports, tool grades, and video of the prospects.
You probably already know most of the names on the rosters because they’ve been discussed and/or prominently ranked at this website, but I want to touch on some interesting inclusions. First, I had to create a new BOARD record for, and source a fresh report on, Brewers RHP Devin Williams, who has been in pro ball since 2013 and is this year’s oldest participant. Injuries constantly sidetracked the first five years of Williams’ career and this season was his first above A-ball. I saw him as a starter in 2016 and 2018 sitting about 90-93 with a plus curveball. He was finally ‘penned this year and has been 91-97 and has touched 100 while showing plus breaking stuff. In my opinion he’s still too wild and has too lengthy an injury history to FV him the way we have other relievers with similar stuff (he was in the honorable mention section of the Brewers’ offseason list), but it’s a great story and an in-person look in Cleveland might change our minds. He’ll likely be a 40-man add this offseason.
Also of note is the Red Sox’s 2018 seventh round pick Jarren Duran, who was the biggest individual riser on our post-draft list update and is on the roster. As far as I know, he’s the lowest-drafted player to make a Futures Game in the following season. Boston’s system is not good and that’s part of why he’s their representative, but his rise has been quite incredible and his evaluation is arguably the game’s most important.
Of course, it’s important to note that these rosters are subject to change due to either injury or big league call-ups. Cubs RHP Adbert Alzolay and Rays LHP/1B Brendan McKay are both in the big leagues right now and would seem to be the most likely to be replaced, while Nationals SS Carter Kieboom, Cleveland OF Daniel Johnson and Rockies LHP Ben Bowden are, in my opinion, in the next tier of likelihood to be replaced. For logistical simplicity, replacements for Alzolay and McKay would be, and this is just an educated guess on my part, Midwest League arms from those teams. Rays prospects Shane Baz or Matthew Liberatore, both on Bowling Green’s roster, would be fine inclusions whose throwing schedules wouldn’t have to be adjusted much for this game, while Cubs LHP Brailyn Marquez, who is at South Bend, is a logical talent/proximity sub, but he’s have to be shorted a day’s rest (compared to what he’s used to, not based on typical big league rest) to throw that night.
Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.