Every Monday, I will be running down some of the notable performances from around the Minor Leagues, or anything that might have caught my eye in general. Here is the 2016 Fantasy Baseball Minor League Prospect Rundown: Week 16:
Alex Bregman HOU, SS/3B/OF/David Dahl COL, OF/Braden Shipley ARI, RHP – One of these things is not like the other, but all are getting the call to the big leagues. I would pick up Bregman and Dahl in leagues of all sizes, they have been raking all season. Shipley I would touch only in deeper leagues. He has put up mediocre stats in the PCL (5.8 K/9), but there is more K upside in there than he has displayed this year.
Josh Hader MIL, LHP – 6 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BB, 6 K in his start this week as he tries to right the ship coming off rocky outings in his previous two starts. Fighting through some adversity can actually help him in the long run, especially since there is a clear and obvious reason for it, Colorado Springs and the PCL. Don’t go panic selling Hader for some mediocre return.
Nick Senzel CIN, 3B – Showed off his homerun power cracking 2 of them this week. He still has only 2 homers in 30 games, but any adjustment to unlock more game power was unlikely to come this year anyway. My co-host, Ralph Lifshitz from Razzball.com, and I will be bullshitting about Senzel and many more of the MLB Draft prospects in Episode 2 of our new podcast, Fantasy Gold Rush, which should drop sometime tomorrow. You can now find our Pilot and all future episodes on iTunes.
Willie Calhoun LAD, 2B – The year of Willie continues! Smashed 5 more homers, giving him 22 on the season. Just keep working on that 2B defense.
Tom Murphy COL, C – 1 homer and 3 walks in 5 games this week. 3 BB! Those 3 walks were over 50% of his BB total on the season up to that point.
Paul DeJong STL, 3B – I wrote about DeJong way back in week 5, and he has kept hitting for power since then. He hit 2 more dingers this week, giving him 18 on the season in Double-A. His 110/28 K/BB needs improvement, but his first full season of pro-ball has been a smashing success.
Jose De Leon LAD, RHP – 8 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BB, 10 K and now has 29 K’s in his last 3 starts in the PCL. His early season injury and lack of big fastball or nasty breaking pitch has kept the hype in check, but I think his fastball/changeup combo is going to play on the next level.
Raul Mondesi Jr. KC, SS – After questioning KC’s developmental strategy with Mondesi last week, he has gone on an absolute tear, collecting 11 hits with a homer and 5 steals at Triple-A. KC is like the parents who throw their kid in the deep end of the pool in order to teach him how to swim.
Kyle Tucker HOU, OF – Is it too early to have mid-season top 100 prospect risers and fallers? Because Tucker has been underwhelming since generating tons of hype on mid-season lists everywhere. He has 9 K’s in his last 9 games and hasn’t had an extra base hit since July 7. He is still super talented, but there is a long way to go for the 19-year-old.
Phil Bickford SFG, RHP – Another player whose wheels came off after getting mid-season list helium. His velocity is down and he had a poor showing at the national showcase Futures Game. I mentioned the added risk with Bickford due to his high-effort delivery in my Top 10 Fantasy Breakouts post last month, and that risk looks like it is rearing its ugly head already. Rumor has it that San Francisco is also making him very available in trades, so leaving AT&T park can be another big blow to his fantasy value.
Chris Shaw SFG, 1B – Has seriously struggled since being promoted to Double-A, slashing .188/.220/.294 in 21 games. Considering he already had a few obstacles to overcome by being a 1B only guy in a huge ballpark, the poor start at Double-A is concerning.
Bobby Bradley CLE, 1B – Smoked 3 more homers this week and continues to play exactly as advertised this season.
Kolby Allard ATL, LHP – Returned to full season ball this week, and didn’t disappoint by going 5 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BB, 4 K.
Rafael Devers BOS, 3B – The hot streak continues, hitting 2 more bombs. After the slow start, he has now raised his triple-slash up to .271/.333/.432 with 7 homers and 10 steals in 91 games.
Christin Stewart DET, OF – Slashed .417/.500/.667 and clubbed his 21st homer of the season this week. Stewart is long overdue for a promotion to Double-A.
Yadier Alvarez LAD, RHP – 5 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BB, 10 K in his first start in full season ball. If this guy is somehow still available in your Dynasty League (of any size) I would probably pick him up right now.
Ryan McMahon COL, 3B – Showing signs of life, slashing .429/.500/.879 with a homer this week and has a .859 OPS in the last month. His stock has certainly taken a hit this year, but he hasn’t gone bankrupt quite yet.
Anthony Alford TOR, OF – Another player trying to rise from the dead, Alford slashed .333/.462/.667 with 2 homers and 1 steal this week. Unlike McMahon, there are legitimate reasons for Alford’s disaster season (concussion, knee injury).
Triston McKenzie CLE, RHP – 6 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BB, 8 K and now has a pitching line of 0.48/1.04/42 in 37.2 IP. He looks like a string bean right now, but he can become a true beast once he starts adding muscle.
Rhys Hoskins PHI, 1B/Daniel Palka MIN, OF/Dylan Cozens PHI, OF – I’ll dedicate this last section to my main man Ralph, who is higher on all of these guys than I am. They are the top 3 in homeruns in the entire minor leagues right now, with 28, 25, and 25, respectively, but I have some questions about each one’s ultimate fantasy impact. If you can grab these guys on the cheap, then I definitely get chasing the power upside, but they aren’t players I would be buying in trades or drafting high in upcoming/off-season prospect drafts.
By Michael Halpern
Twitter: Imaginary Brick Wall (@ImaginaryBrickW)