D-backs get 4 prospects on MLB’s top 100 list, headlined by Corbin Carroll

Jan 27, 2023, 8:37 AM
Corbin Carroll #7 of the Arizona Diamondbacks high fives teammates after defeating the Philadelphia...
Corbin Carroll #7 of the Arizona Diamondbacks high fives teammates after defeating the Philadelphia Phillies at Chase Field on August 29, 2022 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Phillies 13-7. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Arizona Diamondbacks were one of two teams in Major League Baseball with three prospects in the top 15 of MLB Pipeline’s top 100 prospects list for 2023, which came out Thursday night.

Outfielder Corbin Carroll, who finished the 2022 season at No. 3, jumped up to No. 2 in the new rankings, only behind Gunnar Henderson of the Baltimore Orioles. Baltimore was the only other team with three top-15 prospects.

Arizona’s most recent first-round picks in shortstop Jordan Lawlar (2021) and outfielder Druw Jones (2022) placed Nos. 11 and 15, respectively. Pitcher Brandon Pfaadt was the fourth and final D-backs representative in the rankings at No. 59.

The D-backs are looking to continue their forward momentum after a 20-win improvement last year from 2021 (52 to 74).

Carroll, who was called up to the majors last August, is expected to contribute early on.

The NL Rookie of the Year favorite, per FanDuel Sportsbook, also came in at No. 2 on Baseball America’s prospects rankings after he slashed .260/.330/.500 last season with four home runs in 32 MLB games.

He bounced back from a shoulder injury-marred 2021 season with a 1.036 OPS, 24 long balls and 31 stolen bases in the minors in 2022. He’s seen as a five-tool prospect.

Carroll was quick to make his presence known with a go-ahead two-run double in his MLB debut on Aug. 29 against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Manager Torey Lovullo on MLB Network’s “High Heat” last week said Carroll’s mentality is what has impressed him most thus far.

“He’ll be the first to tell you he wants to go out there and earn it,” Lovullo said. “He does not want to be handed anything. He’s a terrific talent, but what he has between his ears is what is most important to me.

“He’s a very heady baseball player who cares about the right things at the right time. I want him to earn it. He deserves it, he’s going to get the first look and we’re excited about his potential.”

Lawlar also bounced back from a injury-laden 2021 with a .910 OPS in 100 games across four levels last season. He stole 39 bases to pair with 16 home runs.

The 20-year-old also got off to a hot start at the Arizona Fall League in 2022 with a .997 OPS in 11 games before a hit-by-pitch ended his time with the Salt River Rafters.

Jones, 19, followed Carroll and Lawlar’s lead as a first-rounder to deal with injuries early in his pro career, hurting his shoulder in 2022.

The son of 10-time Gold Glove winner Andruw Jones was the second overall pick and projects to provide Arizona elite speed and defense.

Pfaadt is 24 and will compete for a role on the 2023 D-backs. He was the 2022 Minor League Pitcher of the Year for Arizona after striking out 218 batters in 167 innings last year.

The D-backs will rely on youth to round out a rotation of Zac Gallen, Merrill Kelly, Zach Davies and Madison Bumgarner. Pfaadt, Ryne Nelson, Drey Jameson and Tommy Henry will be considered.

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D-backs get 4 prospects on MLB’s top 100 list, headlined by Corbin Carroll