Welcome to Appy Astros, a blog dedicated to following current & former Greeneville Astros, the Appalachian League affiliate of the Houston Astros. Here you will find reports on current G-Stros, updates on the development of former G-Stros and occasionally an update on what has happened to the guys who have hung up their spikes.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Whatever Happened To The 2004 Appy League Top 20

People get excited about the top prospect list that come out once the season is over.  They talk about which players are overrated and which are underrated.  They discuss the players who were left off the list.  One thing that most folks don't do, is go back and see how predictive the list was of future success.

I started following minor league baseball when the G-Stros came to town in 2004.  So that class has always been one of my favorites.  I spent some time over the last few days researching what happened to the Baseball American Appy League Top 20 from 2004.  Below are the results.

Here are some observations:
  • 36 players who played in the Appy in 2004 have played in the major leagues.  Only eight of those are on this list. In fairness, some of the 28 players not on the list might not have spent enough time in the league to be listed.  
  • Four players never made it to AA.  Seven players never made it to AAA.  
  • Only one player who hasn't made it to the majors is still in affiliated ball (Jordan Parraz). 
  •  Gio Gonzalez is the player with the most success.  After that, it is mostly relievers and role players.
  • Players develop, injury and teams need to promote can impact MLB debut date.  
  • Injuries and off field issues derailed several of these prospects. 
This is a reminder to not take these list too seriously.  They are not prophetic but projective. 


  1. 2004 was pre hard slotting, so top picks didn't play rookie ball because they were holding out for the biggest signing bonus possible.

  2. Alexander Smit! That brings back memories. I will always remember him in the WBC in 2009. 22 years old, coming in with a slim lead over the Dominican Republic, with 2 runners on and facing Robinson Cano, Hanley Ramirez, and David Ortiz.

    He didn't pitch great... a walk, a hit, and an out on a sacrifice fly. But he challenged three great hitters and left with the lead still intact. That was my favorite WBC moment ever.

  3. It was also when the signing date was in mid August so by the time many signed, the season was too far gone for them who did play to qualify for the list.