by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
First it was Rougned Odor hitting the DL with a strained hamstring, which may cost him three weeks of action. Now has come the news that Elvis Andrus has fractured his elbow, leaving him sidelined indefinitely. With the middle of the infield devastated by injuries, that leaves once top prospect Jurickson Profar to step into a regular role (and one he could keep for a long time).
It’s been a slow start for Profar, who is hitting .167 even after going 2-5 with 1 RBI last night. Considering his injury history and lack of production in the Majors (.227 with 12 HR and 6 SB over 749 PA), it would be easy to simply write him off and assume he’s not going to be able to produce.
It has been a long road, but let’s not forget he’s not far removed from being considered a can’t miss prospect. Prior to the 2013 season John Sickels of Minor League Ball had described Profar by saying:
Best position prospect in baseball, with outstanding mix of on-base ability, moderate power, speed, excellent defense, superior makeup, and youth.
It’s an incredibly small sample size, but Profar has continued to display that strong approach this season:
- O-Swing% – 5.9%
- SwStr% – 17.8%
That’s been the story of his career (6.4% SwStr%, 26.4% O-Swing%). He also showed off his general upside at Triple-A last season, when he hit .287 with 7 HR and 5 SB over 383 PA. Those may not seem appealing, but he added 25 doubles. Still just 25-years old it’s easy to envision him tapping into the power playing in Texas (think 15 HR with regular playing time, with the potential for even a little bit more).
He may not be an elite stolen base option, but would 10 SB hitting near the top of the Texas lineup (he was the #2 hitter yesterday) be a stretch?
It’s easy to be down on Profar, who has gone through numerous starts and stops throughout his career. The talent is still there, and with the injuries now the opportunity is as well. Getting regular AB could allow him to once again put things together, leaving a potential .270/15/10 option ripe for the taking (and he looks even more attractive in OBP formats, where he could post an elevated walk rate).
Waiver Wire Guidelines:
- 10 Team Leagues – Worth Considering
- 12 Team Leagues – Must Add
- 14+ Team Leagues – Must Add
- AL-Only Leagues – Must Add
- Keeper Leagues – Must Add
Sources – Fangraphs, Minor League Ball
Missed our Top 100 prospect rankings? Make sure to check it out by clicking here.