AJ Smith-Shawver had snuck into the back end of MLB Pipeline’s top 100 prospects earlier this season due to the graduation of other prospects, but with their most recent update he is squarely in that group and has jumped up to 68th. By now you’re undoubtedly familiar with Smith-Shawver’s story, as he went from a starter in Single-A Augusta this time last season, began this year in High-A Rome, then vaulted all the way up to make his major league debut in June. Smith-Shawver is back in Triple-A for the time being, but the future is bright and further development could allow him to make an impact for the Atlanta rotation.
While the report for MLB Pipeline did update rankings it did not upgrade tool grades or reports, so for an ever-developing player like Smith-Shawver the report is overall out of date. Notable additions to the report are his curveball which he debuted this year and already may throw better than his slider, as well as a new look changeup that Ivan had a must-read article about following his start against Colorado. This move up to 68th overall is an impressive one for the former seventh round pick as MLB Pipeline tends to be more conservative in their moving of players than other publications.