By: Shane Miller
Taveras was signed in 2008 by the St. Louis Cardinals. The 20-year-old experienced a lot of success in 2012 at double-A Springfield hitting, .321 average, 23 home runs, 94 runs batted in and 10 stolen bases.
Taveras is one of the brightest if not the brightest up coming stars in the minor league. Currently I rank Taveras above Jurickson Profar as the number one prospect in Major League Baseball. There are very few flaws to the outfielders game. His walk/strike-out splits were incredible last year, he walked 42 times and struck-out 56 times, this right here is a clear sign of Taveras ability to be patient at the plate. I believe that he is a special hitter, and he has the type of bat that will fit comfortably in the middle of the order, and change the game with one swing of the lumber.
As you have read above you can tell that Taveras is an advanced prospect and is close to reaching the big leagues. Taveras has fabulous eye-hand coordination, and makes contact on pitches that we've only seen Vladimir Guerrero hit. I've always likened Taveras game to Matt Holliday, another St. Louis Cardinal All-Star, but as I was watching film today the youngster has a lot of Vlad to his game. I say this because Taveras squares up pitches that are out of the hittable zone and drives them for base hits that we've only seen Vlad hit. Taveras also plays great defense and touts a strong arm, he doesn't make bad decisions in the outfield and thats all you can ask for as a coach from the youngster.
Taveras is a great prospect and has superstar potential and as cliche` as this sounds, the sky is really the limit for this guy. I expect a big year from the number one rated prospect in the Cardinals system to the tune of a, .333 average, 27 home runs, 110 runs batted in and 15 stolen bases. I don't expect to see Taveras until September this year unless there is an injury to either Holliday, Jay or Beltran, but next year once Beltran is gone expect Taveras to take over in right field.
Follow Shane Miller @ShaneMiller27 and catch the podcast he co-hosts The Vig & Miller Show on Tuesdays from 7 PM EST to 9 PM EST