From Photobucket, by Tony Lastoria

The Crowdsourced 2012 Cleveland Indians Top 20 Prospects List

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been running what Tobias Bluth would call a “great experiment”: injecting the spirit of democracy into the usually authoritarian annual top prospect rankings by having our readers vote for who they think are the brightest future stars in the Cleveland Indians organization.

Today, we’re unveiling our crowdsourced 2012 top prospect list for the Indians.

Participants in our vote were asked to name their top 10 Cleveland prospects (as defined as any player who has not yet lost his rookie eligibility) in order. A first-place vote was worth 10 points, a second-place vote was worth nine points, etc. Each player was then ranked according too his vote share (the amount of points he got divided by the maximum he could have gotten—i.e., if he’d been No. 1 on every ballot). Ties were broken first by looking at how many ballots players were named on, then by what the players’ highest rankings were.

Without further ado, here is our list:

Francisco Lindor was the unanimous choice for the top prospect in the organization, earning a first-place vote on every single ballot. Beyond that, though, there was quite a large breadth of opinions. Only one other prospect was named on every list, and only six players appeared on more than 50 percent of submissions.

Dillon Howard comes in as the clear No. 2, followed by Tony Wolters, Nick Hagadone, Scott Barnes, and Chen Lee. The bunched-together group of Luigi Rodriguez, LeVon Washington, Austin Adams, and Jake Sisco round out the Top 10.

They’re followed by Jason Knapp, Cord Phelps, Jesus Aguilar, Felix Sterling, Ronny Rodriguez, Nick Weglarz, Elvis Araujo, Chun-Hsiu Chen, Beau Mills, and Zach McAllister. Jordan Henry, Giovanni Soto, Jake Lowery, Thomas Neal, Kelvin De La Cruz, Eric Haase, Alex Lavisky, Alex Monsalve, and Carlos Moncrief also received votes.

How did the democratic process stack up with the experts’ picks? Here’s how our list compared with Keith Law’sBaseball America‘s, John Sickels’Jonathan Mayo’s, and Kevin Goldstein’s:

It’s interesting to see how well (or poorly) the respective wisdoms of the experts and the crowds line up. Our voters seem to be quite high on Wolters, Barnes, and Washington—not to mention Knapp, Weglarz, and Mills, for whom our voters hold out much more hope despite none of the experts putting them on their lists. Meanwhile Sterling, Ronny Rodriguez, and McAllister didn’t impress our scouts nearly as much as they did the for the experts.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to participate! We’ll find out in the next few years who is truly better at ranking young players.

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Tags: Francisco Lindor

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