So you’ve got a prospect list, too? Get in line

I spent a lot of time alone at home during the day.

Don’t feel bad for me, that’s just how it during the off-season. My wife works, I work from home and our dog, Sofie the Schnauzer, sleeps 22 hours a day.

Except last week when Sofie set aside some time to compile her list of the Padres top 10 Minor League prospects. Now mind you, it took her a while … some lame excuse about lacking opposable thumbs. It involved her pushing around her dry food on the kitchen floor in the shape of letters.

G-Y-O-R-K-O … woof! Good girl!

I kid, of course. Sofie can’t really type, but if she could she might have joined the popular movement this winter of assembling a list of the top Padres prospects.

Take a look around — these lists are everywhere. From reputable organizations (those who talk to scouts and others in the industry), to those fans who follow the team closely all the way to those who have grown tired of watching reruns of Glee and have no idea what a Yasmani is.

At first, I found this a little comical until I had an epiphany of sorts that this was actually kind of cool.

After all, how many people were doing this five years ago (people meaning those who aren’t in the habit of compiling such lists every year)? — “Now where do we put Sean Kazmar, hmmm” — Hey, even some major media outlets have started to develop and subsequently run wild with these lists in recent memory.

My point is people are excited about the Padres farm system.

These prospects — and where they came from, how the Padres acquired them, that’s not important to this post (well, let’s be honest, nothing about this post is important). What is, if you’re a Padres fan, is that this influx of young talent has fans genuinely optimistic about the future of the team.

So all this prospect talk got me to thinking. I wonder if Randy Smith — the Padres vice president of player development and international scouting — has a list of his own. Since Smith essentially presided over the entire farm system, if anyone has a list worth looking at, it would probably be his, right?

I talked to Smith on Friday and asked him if he has such a list (and, you know, if he could tell me the exact order of it).

“To me, it’s awfully hard to do. To get them into groups is easy … this is one tier, this is the next, then the next,” Smith said. “But to break them down and say who is 1, 2 and 3 and then who the seventh or ninth guy is … that’s tough. And it changes. It changes as soon as you get these guys on the field.”

Smith essentially shared the same sentiment I hold on all of these prospect lists: The more the better. And does it really matter where you have Jaff Decker on your list? No, it’s your list. Run with it.

“I think it’s great. It means there’s interest out there,” Smith said. “All the years I’ve been around this organization, almost 30 years now, I have  never seen this type of interest in the system. It’s a healthy debate.”

Corey Brock, MLB.com

Twitter: FollowThePadres

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