First, the reason I'm starting at number eleven is that the number one prospect is David Price. So this list is the top ten (2-11) with respect to David Price, who is still technically a prospect and possibly the front runner for the 2009 AL rookie of the year.
When I first looked at Baseball America's top ten for the Rays organization, I first noticed how high Matt Moore was ranked. I only knew that he was a recent high draft pick by the Rays but not a top prospect. Moore is a left-handed pitcher drafted as the Rays 2007 eighth round pick out of high school from New Mexico. Started his first year in pro ball in the Rays rookie level team Princeton Rays at the age of 18 pitching only 20.1 innings. For his 2nd year of pro ball he started again at the rookie level. This time he was able to start 12 games and perform very well sporting a 1.66 ERA and an opponents batting average of .154 in 54.1 innings. His strikeout to walk ratio improved to 4.05 and had a WHIP of .90. This shows me he can get a lot of swing and misses.
At his size, 6'2'' and 205 lbs, he has a good frame to throw in the low nineties consistently, which is above-average for a left-hander starter. I then look up his scouting report and a few things came to mind. A left handed starter with an above average fastball, topping at 94 mph, and a tight breaking curveball. He also has a changeup but it is still developing. When looking at this, the pitchers that I think of are Jon Lester, John Danks, and Cliff Lee. They all throw very similar stuff, have good velocity and control of the fastball, and have about the same frame. Moore showed great improvement in control from his first to second year, although that was two straight years of rookie ball.
The 2009 year may be Matt Moore's most important year because he will have to start adjusting to better hitters in order to progress through the minors. He has excellent stuff for a left-hander and may have reminded Baseball America as a future Cliff Lee. But he is still four years away from a shot at the major league club.