Written by: Ray Butler
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2019 has been a year of growth and evolution for Prospects365.com. From our page views increasing nearly 175% to being credentialed for the freakin’ Futures Game in Cleveland, this site has quickly ascended to heights much greater than I thought were imaginable upon its conception in 2017.
From live looks from minor league ballparks, to using new methods to evaluate prospects, to analytical deep dives on big league players, our vision has quickly evolved from simple, to-the-point prospect coverage to innovative, provoking content in all facets of baseball.
Here are some of my favorite articles published on the site this year.
In January, I published a hype piece on Kristian Robinson. The article included an interview I conducted with the teenage star, which was a pretty cool experience. I said it in the article and I’ll say it now: when you mix the raw tools with his humility and wisdom, Robinson is destined for greatness on the sport’s biggest stage.
Later that month, I published an article on weaponizing Twitter for your fantasy baseball arsenal. The piece led to a firestorm of activity on the social media platform, and feedback from other industry writers and personalities certainly made the project worthwhile. Stay tuned for an updated version of this article….
February was an extremely busy month. Adam Ehrenreich published this piece on 2019 sleepers and breakout candidates. The list included Shane Bieber, Rafael Devers, Austin Meadows and Jonathan Villar, which is pretty cool in retrospection. Andrew Lowe detailed Jeremiah Jackson’s potential, all while discussing philosophies that help you win dynasty leagues. Two weeks later, John Stewart released this feature on Ethan Hankins and Dylan Matthews published this article on Brennen Davis. The stock of all three of those prospects exploded in 2019, and site readers were aware of the possibility months before it happened.
The month of February also consisted of this deep dive on Franmil Reyes from Mac Squibb. That article quickly became one of the most-read articles in site history, then Reyes proceeded to hit 37 home runs in 2019. Not too shabby. Adam Tulley published articles on Antoni Flores and Luis Oviedo, a pair of prospects who will be on bounceback radars in 2020.
The next few months took on the ‘business as usual’ mantra, with new content being published weekly. We were also treated to mechanical deep dives, like this article on new age hitting from college player Trevor Powers and this piece on pitch effects from James Schiano. James killed it in 2019, diving deep on underrated pitchers like Elieser Hernandez and the analytical side of the Arizona Fall League. He’ll be writing for Pitcher List in 2020. Trevor has new work on the way.
Tyler Spicer has been a meteoric riser in the prospect world throughout 2019, and he officially introduced himself by introducing cluster analytics to the prospect evaluation process. I would like to think his quick ascension to 1000 Twitter followers (now more) speak both to the quality of his work and the growth of the site in general. I have no doubt Tyler will continue to kill it in 2020.
Scouting the Futures Game in July has probably been my biggest ‘wow’ moment since launching the site, especially since I was credentialed by Major League Baseball to be on the field during batting practice. I also had the opportunity to meet other prospectors and industry titans in Cleveland, some of whom I now consider close friends.
At the end of July, we introduced the addition of industry star Shelly Verougstraete, who began publishing her scouting looks and a Prospect Team of the Month, two features I hope she continues next season. We’re lucky to have her.
The final weeks of the 2019 season consisted of several intriguing articles, including this Will Scharnagl article on future breakout prospect Jose Garcia, these analytical deep dives on Mitch Keller and Adrian Houser and a retrospection article on everything I got wrong in 2019.
In total, there has been 124 articles published on Prospects365.com in 2019. I would like to think this year has officially established our site as one of the most credible, up-and-coming destinations for prospect, active player and analytical insight throughout the baseball world.
2019 has certainly laid the foundation for our continued growth and evolution, which will begin coming to fruition as we turn the page to a new decade. In a perfect world, 2020 will be the first time we exceed 1,000,000 page views in a single year. If we can simply continue growing at a constant rate, Prospects365.com will undoubtedly take on a life of its own throughout the upcoming decade.
As always, thank you for reading. Our site has grown and will continued to grow because of your support. I promise the new decade will be our best one yet!
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