Mid-Season Top 40 Prospects: #20

#20. Stephen Johnson – RHP, 22 yo, Lo-A: This list is full of bullpen arms with big fastballs. What separates Johnson from some of the other guys here is his velocity, which was regularly hitting 100 on the gun during his days at D-II St. Edwards. The Giants took him with a 6th round pick in the ’12 draft, but I’m not sure if he’s still lighting up triple digit heat or not. He’s been used strictly out of the bullpen as a pro, and really hasn’t had a ton of success in the low levels. With that type of fastball, he’s going to have a high k-rate, which he does this year (11.4 k/9). But his walk/9 rate of 5.3 is way too high, and a 5.57 ERA in 32 innings makes you think he doesn’t have much of a breaking ball at this point. If he can develop one at some point, however, he may take off. You don’t find guys who can crank it up like that too often.

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