(GAME DATE – Apr. 15, 2020) — The Bull League’s Top 100 Prospects list was put out on Opening Day, and we’ll review the top names as we roll through April, starting with Numero Uno, John Rambo.
#1 JOHN “LONE WOLF” RAMBO, CHICAGO
The 22-year-old right fielder was drafted first overall by the Chicago Pit Bulls in the 2019 draft, coming out of two years with Arizona State University where he patrolled the outfield for the Sun Devils.
Rambo, who went to ASU as a local boy hailing from Bisbee, Arizona, batted .397 with 42 home runs and 118 RBIs, establishing for himself an impressive OPS of 1.404. He was named 2019 NCAA College Player of the Year for the Southeast and PAC-12 region.
He had the attention of Bull League scouts throughout his last college year, but with the Chicago Pit Bulls earning the first overall selection it was a sure thing the Windy City’s team would grab Rambo with their prime pick.
Rambo played a total of 54 minor league games, splitting his time between AA level Anchorage Sky Chiefs and AAA level Milwaukee Pugs. He went yard 18 times and drove in 42 runs, even swiping 4 bases and averaging .295 at the plate.
Pit Bulls GM Scott Davis thought Rambo was ready for the big time and on April 1, Rambo made the opening day roster.
#2 MEI-SHAN SIU, CALIFORNIA
Former Seoul Sushi ace played 3 seasons in the Pacific Rim College League (PRCL), the 2nd tier international collegiate circuit, and put up commanding numbers on his way to a PRCL World Series championship and a Pitcher of the Year award for the 2019 season, his draft year. It was actually Siu’s second Pitcher of the Year nod, he won it in 2017 as well, after going a perfect 8-0 on the season.
Amazingly, Siu wouldn’t be selected until the 3rd round, when the California Tidals took him 52nd overall. Siu’s Pitcher WAR after three college seasons was 7.6, with a 20-4 record, 4 saves, 200.0 inning pitched and a 1.84 ERA. By the end of college, he established himself as a dominant cutter/curveball pitcher, touching 97 mph at the high end on his cut fastball.
While he was still developing, he had shown enough talent for the Tidals to notice, and was immediately put to work at A level Flagstaff Racers, going 5-3 with 16 saves and a 1.14 WHIP in 27 appearances. He struck out 32 in 30.2 innings while walking just 5 batters all season.
Siu was named #2 prospect in the Bull League, and will start the year off at AAA level Anaheim Pharaohs, skipping AA level, and just inches away from a slot in the Tidals bullpen. Though it is very possible California will wait for him to develop a bit further along, perhaps refining his change and splitter, before promoting him to the Tidals rotation, where he could make the Metro League’s 4th best rotation into the 1st or 2nd best.
#3 JEREMY PESSOTTO, MINNEAPOLIS
Shortstop Jeremy Pessotto has been called a dominant force, an intimidating hitter despite his small, 175-lbs frame, but blessed with a flawless swing with an upward stroke that has driven balls high and far time and time again.
The 18-year-old Venezuelan Pessotto was discovered by the Minneapolis’ scout team’s South American international amateur scout in 2018, and by the 2019 was placed onto the Rookie League roster with the Jacksonville Beach Ravens. He was named the #2 prospect in 2019, but was bumped down by Rambo and Siu for this year.
But that doesn’t diminish his talent in the slightest, as “Pogo” rates as one of the premier defensive players at his position, in addition to grabbing attention with his bat. When Short Season A started up last June, Pogo played 33 games and his .370, including a 12-game hit streak.
Pessotto started 2020 back in Rookie league where the Ravens hope he will develop a bit more of his projected power. But look for him to move up to the top level very soon, though current shortstop Roberto Castro has three seasons left on his contract after this year and though Castro could play 2B, Lan-quing Siew has that spot locked down for the forseeable future.
WE WILL TAKE A LOOK AT MORE OF OUR 2020 TOP PROSPECTS IN COMING ARTICLES…