Major League Baseball showcased its prospects this week with the 16th annual SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. We polled MLB Network Radio’s experts to find the best of the best from Minnesota. Former GMs Jim Bowden and Jim Duquette, Minors and Majors’ Grant Paulsen and Power Alley’s Mike Ferrin weighed in with their top five Futures Game prospects.

Mike Ferrin (@MikeFerrinSXM)

  1. Joey Gallo, Texas Rangers, 3B
  2. Kris Bryant, Chicago Cubs, 3B
  3. Javier Baez, Cubs, SS
  4. Julio Urias, Los Angeles Dodgers, LHP
  5. Lucas Giolito, Washington Nationals, RHP

Gallo, the Rangers’ second-best prospect, stole the show in Minnesota before the game even began. He put on one of the greatest batting practice displays seen in the 15-year history of the event, hitting three balls completely out of Target Field.

“I was just trying to hit the ball hard,” Gallo said about his batting practice session when he joined Minors and Majors. “People started cheering and so I said, ‘I’ll give people what they want,’ and I started hitting.”

Gallo backed his impressive pregame show by hitting a go-ahead two-run home run in the sixth inning to give Team USA a 3-2 lead. USA beat World 3-2 to capture a fifth consecutive SiriusXM Futures Game win.

It’s a lot of fun, and I just went up there for my third at-bat and put together a good at-bat. I got into a good count and was able to drive one.

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Jim Bowden (@JimBowdenESPNXM)

  1. Francisco Lindor, Cleveland Indians, SS
  2. Kris Bryant, Cubs, 3B
  3. Javier Baez, Cubs, SS
  4. Joey Gallo, Rangers, 3B
  5. Lucas Giolito, Washington Nationals, RHP, and Julio Urias, Dodgers, LHP

Honorable Mention: Corey Seager, Dodgers, SS

Lindor, who was drafted in the first round of the 2011 draft, was playing in his third straight futures game. The 20-year old is one of the best defensive shortstops in the minor leagues and told Grant Paulsen his key to success is to keep it simple.

I just try to make every routine play out there. If the pitcher is doing his job getting hitters to roll over, then I have to do my job, which is catching the ball and trying to make a good throw to first base.

Lindor was one of seven players from Puerto Rico to play in the SiriusXM Futures Game.

Jim Duquette (@Jim_Duquette)

  1. Kris Bryant, Cubs, 3B
  2. Javier Baez, Cubs, SS
  3. Francisco Lindor, Indians, SS
  4. Joey Gallo, Rangers, 3B
  5. Lucas Giolito, Nationals, RHP

Bryant is arguably the best position prospect in minor league baseball. In his first full season of professional baseball, he has 33 home runs and 84 RBI while splitting time between Double-A and Triple-A.

The second overall pick in last year’s draft, Bryant enjoyed his first Futures Game experience.

“You just have to go out there and do what you’ve been doing all season. I’m just trying to go out there and have fun, and I’m not going to change anything; it’s just another game,” Bryant said when asked about the challenge of trying to impress his peers and scouts at the game.

Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen)

  1. Kris Bryant, Cubs, 3B
  2. Javier Baez, Cubs, SS
  3. Francisco Lindor, Indians, SS
  4. Lucas Giolito, Nationals, RHP
  5. Domingo German, Miami Marlins, RHP

Bryant and Baez are the top two prospects in the Cubs organization; Baez is ranked as the top prospect, with Bryant second. Bryant went hitless with two strikeouts in the Futures Game, while Baez hit a two-run home run to left field to give the World team a 2-1 lead in the sixth. Baez’ opposite field power was just as impressive as the display Gallo showed in batting practice.

“I try to enjoy this trip and it feels good to know that a lot [like] what you’re doing,” Baez told Paulsen on Minors and Majors.

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Baez homered off Giolito, the top pitching prospect in the minor leagues, who displays a plus-plus fastball and above-average curveball.

“If the opportunity arises, maybe put a little bit more on the fastball or snap off the curveball a little bit firmer, and I have to make a promise to myself now that I won’t look up at the radar gun in the middle of the inning because that’s a no-no for pitchers and never leads to anything good,” said Giolito, who turned 20 two days after the Futures Game.

Even more impressive than his pitching repertoire was the way Giolito carried himself in the Team USA clubhouse. The 2013 first-round pick was seen all over the club talking to reporters, USA teammates, and “holding court like a 15-year veteran,” Paulsen described.

Domingo German may not have been the best known prospect in the 2014 Futures Game, but pitched one of the most impressive innings of the game. German struck out Gallo and Bryant before getting Seattle Mariners prospect DJ Peterson to ground out in a perfect second inning for the World team.

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