With Opening Day right around the corner for the 2021 MLB season, one thing is clear in Scottsdale: All eyes are on the future for the Giants.
The Giants no doubt made moves to compete this season by bringing in a handful of pitchers who should help in the rotation and bullpen, as well as offensive players like Tommy La Stella, Jason Vosler and LaMonte Wade Jr. But long balls from Heliot Ramos and Joey Bart, along with line drives galore from Will Wilson have stolen the spotlight. Foul balls from Marco Luciano have fans frothing at the mouth.
For the first time since the days of a young Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner, the Giants are building a farm system that should create a homegrown contender in the near future. MLB Pipeline agrees. The Giants just missed Pipeline's top 10 farm system rankings ahead of the 2021 season, coming in at No. 11 overall.
Over the last year, the Giants have hovered right around Pipeline's top 10. They were ranked No. 10 going into the 2020 season, fell to 13 in their midseason ranking and now are up to 11. Much of that likely has to do with Luciano.
The 19-year-old shortstop is ranked No. 16 overall in Pipeline's Top 100. Luciano has hit just .143 and has 13 strikeouts in 21 at-bats this spring in his first big league camp. His power potential at shortstop, however, is off the charts. Some evaluators even believe Luciano could be the top prospect in all of baseball at the start of next season.
Luciano is joined by Bart (No. 23), Ramos (No. 82) and Hunter Bishop (No. 83) on Pipeline's Top 100. Ramos easily has enjoyed the most success out of that bunch this spring.
Ramos survived the first round of cuts in big league camp before being assigned to minor league camp over the weekend. The thick center fielder has hit .379 with three home runs and a 1.124 OPS in 14 games this spring. Ramos, 21, likely will start the season in Double-A Richmond but could easily hit his way to the big leagues by the summer.
While none of the Giants' top prospects are expected to be on their Opening Day roster this season, a handful could help at some point in 2021 with eyes widening at the thought of next season. They have some high-end prospects and the depth continues to improve.
Pipeline's latest rankings are just another indication that San Francisco is that much closer to creating the next version of Posey-Bumgarner Giants, giving fans a core of young players they can root for in the near future and many seasons to come.