Just FYI, 1 – Tampa   2 – Oakland   3 – Texas   and 5 – Boston

4. Cincinnati Reds: Call them the big four. The Reds have a quartet of elite prospects that single-handedly put them in the upper-echelon of all farm systems. And all four of them should start contributing in Cincy in 2008.

Outfielder Jay Bruce is the consensus No. 1 prospect in all of baseball. Ace of the future Homer Bailey may have had a small hiccup last year, but finished strongly and is still a Top 10 kind of player. Joey Votto is ready for a full-time first base job in the big leagues now and right-hander Johnny Cueto has generated a ton of buzz in big-league camp this spring, working his way into the No. 5 starter mix. Even if none of these players breaks north with the Reds on Opening Day, you’ll be hearing from them soon enough.

There is a decided drop-off after these four, but there are still a good number of future big leaguers in this system. Their biggest strength in terms of depth is probably in the middle infield, where there’s a viable shortstop at pretty much every level. There’s also some good arms behind the Bailey-Cueto dynamic duo and if you examine the system closely enough, they’ve got at least one legitimate prospect at every position.

Legitimate prospect at every position. Wonder when, if ever, they’ve been able to say that? I assume they’re calling Devin Mesorasco the prospect at catcher. Takes more than a #1 pick to make you a prospect in my book though.

Nevertheless, this is very exciting news for Reds fans!