Kolten Wong, the Cardinals' top infield prospect, was named Monday to the Arizona Fall League's "Top Prospect" team for 2012. The team is selected by managers and coaches in the Arizona Fall League, and voters are encouraged to consider production during the six-week schedule in Arizona as well as major-league potential for each player.
Two players are selected at every position, including a total of six outfielders.
Here is what the AFL scouting report said on Wong:
Hit .500 when ahead in the count … Rising Stars Game participant … three runs scored vs. Phoenix on 11/05 … three hits and three RBI at Salt River on 10/23 … four hits at Scottsdale on 10/16 … ranked the best second base prospect, fourth best Cardinals prospect and 49th best prospect by MLB.com ... Baseball America third-team all-American, ABCA first-team all-American, Perfect Game first-team all-American team in 2008 … first-team all-WAC selection all three years at Hawaii … WAC freshman of the year in 2009.
Wong, 22, was the Cardinals' first pick in the 2011 draft, going 22nd overall. He spent the past season at Class AA Springfield, where he won a league title for the second time at a second level in as many professional seasons. Wong hit .287/.348/.405 with nine homers, 52 RBIs, and 79 runs scored in 126 games for the S-Cards. He also represented the Cardinals in the annual Futures Game.
That resumé helped earn him an invitation to the Arizona Fall League, which is often called baseball's "finishing school" for the quality of competition and atmosphere that is presented prospects. As the Surprise team's starting second baseman, Wong hit .324/.342/.392 in the AFL with 24 hits, three of which went for extra bases. He drove in 12 runs and scored 12 runs in 17 games.
Wong is set to be invited to major-league spring training and the organization is optimistic he'll reach the majors at some point in 2013. The team has acknowledged the possibility he'll factor into their plans for second base as early as this coming season.