There are so many ways to evaluate a young baseball player's skills, but scouts have the most tried-and-true method: breaking a player's specific skills into different "tools." These tools separate a player's baseball-relevant skills into different areas, such as throwing ability, hitting for power and running speed. Then there's a comments section included, in which a scout can call special attention to a certain facet of a player's game, such as a unique hitch a hitter has or a smooth throwing motion.
Essentially, it's all of a player's skills on one sheet of paper.
But the evaluating doesn't end once a player reaches the major leagues and becomes more of a known commodity. The grades remain and can even change. And some stand out even among the mass of talented players that is the major leagues. For the next three days, we will call attention to those special players.
We asked three MLB Insider talent evaluators -- Manny Acta, Jim Bowden and Christopher Crawford -- to lay out the best of the best, those who stand out among their peers. Today we look at defensive tools. Hitter tools will follow on Thursday, with pitcher tools on Friday.