Arroyo tops Giants prospects to watch

Arroyo tops Giants prospects to watch

SAN FRANCISCO -- Don't check the ratings to evaluate any year's crop of Giants prospects. Check the results.

The organization's homegrown players -- starting pitchers in 2010, infielders in 2012 and 2014 -- were largely responsible for the club's World Series titles in those seasons. Few were heralded by experts and national publications before they rose to the Majors.'s Spring Training preview continues with a sampling of the prospects the Giants might rely on during the course of the season:

Comeback candidates | Newcomers

INF Christian Arroyo: Finding a position for Arroyo, baseball's No. 82 prospect on's annual Top 100 list, is the Giants' first priority involving him. He plays primarily shortstop, a spot dominated by Brandon Crawford, who signed a six-year contract extension this offseason. Arroyo also can play second base, but the Giants seem quite happy with current second baseman Joe Panik.

RHP Ray Black: A veteran of Tommy John surgery, Black consistently reaches or exceeds 100 mph with his velocity. As is the case with most youthful hard throwers, Black still struggles with control. He struck out 51, but walked 25 at Class A Advanced San Jose last season. He improved somewhat in the Arizona Fall League, striking out 16 and walking six in nine innings.

Ray Black on his AFL progress

RHP Clayton Blackburn: Should the Giants need to reinforce their rotation, Blackburn quite possibly would be the first pitcher they'd summon from the Minors. Improved conditioning and health have made a big difference for Blackburn, whose 2.85 ERA led the Pacific Coast League last year.

OF Jarrett Parker: Parker possesses startling power, as he proved in September by hitting five home runs in three games. If he can continue to demonstrate offensive potential and prove that he's competent defensively, he could earn a reserve role on the Opening Day roster.

Must C: Parker goes yard thrice

OF Mac Williamson: At 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, Williamson's one of the most imposing Giants, physically. If he can convert strength into skill more frequently, he and Parker should sustain a spirited competition for a reserve role.

Chris Haft is a reporter for Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.