Prospect Stock Report: Are We Buying Breakouts For Austin Hays Or Mauricio Dubon?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Obviously there are always prospects whose stock is rising and falling, given their performances.  While it’s impossible to pinpoint all of them, here are a few players whose early season numbers are sending then to either soar or sink (all stats are through Monday):

 

Austin Hays – Baltimore Orioles – Outfielder
He caught everyone’s attention on Sunday, going 5-5 with 2 HR, 6 RBI and 4 R, but the fact is that the 2016 third round pick has been producing all season long at High-A:

.328 (86-262), 16 HR, 41 RBI, 42 R, 4 SB

As if those numbers weren’t enough, he’s also shown an ability to make consistent contact (14.3% strikeout rate) and hit the ball hard (22.7% line drive rate).  Coupled with the power, his average doesn’t look unrealistic (.337 BABIP).

That said there are questions that need to be answered.  First you have to wonder if he can maintain his current strikeout rate, considering his 13.9% SwStr%.  Then you have his power potential, as MLB.com described him by saying: Read more

Profiling The Prospects: What To Expect From The Debuting Luis Castillo (Reds) & Andrew Moore (Mariners)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Over the next two days we will see a pair of MLB pitching debuts, as the Reds’ Luis Castillo will debut directly from Double-A  tomorrow and the Mariners’ Andrew Moore will take the mound tonight (moving Yovani Gallardo to the bullpen).  What can we expect from these two?  Let’s take a look:

 

Luis Castillo – Cincinnati Reds
Preseason Grade – B+

In 14 starts at Double-A Castillo has pitched to a 2.58 ERA and 1.01 WHIP.  Not only that, after posting unimpressive strikeout rates coming up through the minors he’s exploded for a 9.07 K/9 while continuing to show off his improving control (1.46 BB/9 in ’17, 2.4 over his minor league career).  Neither of those things should come as major surprises, as both fit our preseason profile:

Acquired as part of a three-player package in exchange for Dan Straily, the converted reliever brings strikeout potential despite not yet showing it (7.0 K/9 over 131.2 IP between High-A and Double-A in ’16).  He throws hard and as he learns how to harness his stuff as a starter it’s easy to envision a strikeout per inning (or more).  The biggest question has always been his control, but that has been trending in the right direction: Read more

MLB Prospect Power Rankings: Top 10 On The Cusp Of Reaching The Majors (June 21, 2017)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Which prospects are on the verge of making an impact in the Major Leagues? This weekly column will rank the ten who are closest (as well as other names that are being closely considered). Keep in mind that while talent is factored in opportunity plays a major role, so there may be some “lesser” prospects who rank fairly highly on the list (please note all stats are through Monday and the number in parenthesis is the ranking from last week):

 

1) Yoan Moncada – Chicago White Sox – Second Baseman (4)
He hasn’t really answered the questions that have been suppressing his potential value all season long:

  • Strikeouts – 24 K in 66 AB in June (28.0% overall)
  • Extra Base Hits – 2 doubles and 2 home runs in June (17 total XBH)

We want to believe in the talent and the upside, and they are obvious, but he needs to fix these issues in order to thrive in the Majors.  The team continues to have a need, though they also have yet to pull the trigger on his promotion.  That should tell you something, and while he should get an opportunity before long he still needs to prove himself before being summoned from Triple-A. Read more

With The Injury To Gleyber Torres, Don’t Overlook The Potential Of Miguel Andujar

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Obviously the loss of Gleyber Torres hurts the Yankees, as everyone expected him to get an opportunity to fill the team’s relative void at third base (though Chase Headley has been showing signs once again).  That said it’s not impossible that if the team decides it needs an upgrade it could dip down into their farm system to get one.  While Tyler Wade could conceivably get an opportunity, instead they could be a bit bolder.  Enter Miguel Andujar, who was tearing it up at Double-A and was recently promoted to Triple-A (plus the fact that he’s already on the 40-man roster further helps his cause):

.312 (79-253), 7 HR, 52 RBI, 30 R, 2 SB

While the power or speed may not jump off the page, when you start diving into the numbers you see a lot of positives.

 

Extra Base Hits
While he has just 7 HR, he already has 23 doubles and 1 triple.  That puts him sixth in all of the minors in terms of doubles, and shows his potential to add power as he develops and matures.  As Prospect 361 stated prior to the season: Read more

Prospect Stock Report: Has The Time Come To Give Up On Tyler O’Neill?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There were high hopes for the Mariners’ Tyler O’Neill entering the season, with the thought being he could make an impact at some point in 2017. However he’s off to an extremely disappointing start in his first taste of Triple-A:

.212, 6 HR, 26 RBI, 29 R, 5 SB

Strikeouts have always been a part of his game, and he currently sits at 27.6% to open the year. His 17.4% SwStr% is similar to that of Peter O’Brien (17.1%), and we all know how his game has translated to the Majors (or should we say the lack there of).

It’s not to say that there isn’t hope, as he has hit the ball relatively hard (25.5% line drive rate), though the strikeouts will always cap his average potential. The bigger concern, however, is the complete lack of power. Read more

Triple-A Promotions: What Is The Outlook for the Recently Promoted Domingo Acevedo & Andrew Suarez

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Recently there were a pair of intriguing promotions, with team’s bumping pitchers to Triple-A.  They each have significant potential, and now could be on the precipice of an impact in the Major Leagues.  Let’s take a look at each of them to try and determine what type of value they possess:

 

Domingo Acevedo – New York Yankees – Right-Handed Pitcher
Acevedo has split time between High-A and Double-A this season, with significantly different results:

  • High-A (41.1 IP) – 4.57 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 11.32 K/9, 1.96 BB/9
  • Double-A (33.1 IP) – 1.62 ERA, 0.81 WHIP, 8.37 K/9, 0.81 BB/9

The difference in the numbers are strictly luck based, as he carried a .393 BABIP despite a 16.7% line drive rate during his time at High-A.  While he possesses strikeout stuff, the most impressive mark may be his control.  Standing at 6’7” we would generally expect to see some control issues, but that has arguably been his strongest asset (2.2 BB/9 over his minor league career). Read more

Getting To Know: Matt Chapman: Freshly Recalled, Can He Make An Instant Impact For Oakland?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

With Trevor Plouffe continuing to flounder the A’s will dip into their farm system for an alternative, promoting Matt Chapman from Triple-A.  If you simply look at his 16 HR and 30 RBI over 174 AB at Triple-A you would get excited.  However what happens when you dig a little bit deeper into the numbers?  Do we still believe?  Is he a lock to produce upon arrival?  Let’s dive in and take a look:

Rotoprofessor Rankings:
Preseason – A’s #6 ranked prospect

Bats – Right-Handed

Age – 24

What We Said In The Preseason:
Power…  Power…  Power…  Chapman has more than enough, after slugging 36 HR over 514 AB between Double and Triple-A last season.  The question is going to be if he can make enough contact in the Majors to tap into it:

  • Double-A – 29.2%
  • Triple-A – 30.6%

That’s obviously something to watch, and could turn him more into a Chris Carter type player in the Majors.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it does limit his overall upside Read more

MLB Prospect Power Rankings: Top 10 On The Cusp Of Reaching The Majors (June 14, 2017)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Which prospects are on the verge of making an impact in the Major Leagues? This weekly column will rank the ten who are closest (as well as other names that are being closely considered). Keep in mind that while talent is factored in opportunity plays a major role, so there may be some “lesser” prospects who rank fairly highly on the list (please note all stats are through Monday and the number in parenthesis is the ranking from last week):

 

1) Amed Rosario – New York Mets – Shortstop (1)
With Wilmer Flores heating up and Yoenis Cespedes returning to the lineup the calls for Rosario’s promotion had quieted.  That was until Asdrubal Cabrera hit the DL yesterday, and then the cries for his promotion reached new levels.  He hasn’t joined the Mets yet (they instead recalled T.J. Rivera), but does anyone believe Jose Reyes can handle the position?  If he struggles (or maybe we should say when he struggles), Rosario is going to arrive.  There’s no questioning his offense (.337/.379/.494 at Triple-A), it’s perhaps his defense that has kept him pinned at Triple-A.  Regardless, for a Mets team that can’t afford to give any game away any type of slump could trigger his promotion. Read more

Domino Effect: How The Rise Of Michael Chavis Could Accelerate Rafael Devers Arrival

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Boston Red Sox currently have a void at third base, as they try to piece things together with a rag tag group of misfits.  Just look at the names and production from the players that has combined to slash .203/.258/.329 through Sunday:

  • Pablo Sandoval (80 AB) – .188/.233/.363
  • Deven Marrero (71 AB) – .155/.200/.310
  • Josh Rutledge (40 AB) – .325/.426/.325
  • Marco Hernandez (27 AB) – .222/.222/.333
  • Brock Holt (3 AB) – .000/.250/.000
  • Steve Selsky (1 AB) – .000/.000/.000

At least, for the team’s sake, the future looks much brighter than the current situation and a domino effect could lead to an infusion of talent before long.

 

Does Michael Chavis Warrant A Promotion?
After playing in 7 games at High-A last season, Chavis opened the year at High-A and has raked over his first 53 games.  All he’s done is hit .335 with 16 HR (as well as 17 doubles and 2 triples) with 54 RBI and 47 R.  More importantly he’s continued to improve his strikeout rate, which has always been the biggest question hanging over him: Read more

Prospect Stock Report: Could Francisco Mejia Be On The Precipice Of His MLB Debut?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Coming off an impressive 2016 season the Indians have not gotten off to the best of starts in 2017. While they have never been an overly aggressive franchise in terms of the promotion of their prospects, it’s fair to wonder if they could look from within for a shot in the arm. One of their obvious areas of weakness is at catcher (third worst SLG, at .320, and fifth worst AVG, at .203), but lucky for them they have the premier catching prospect tearing the cover off the ball at Double-A.

The best thing that may have happened to the Indians was Jonathan Lucroy refusing to go to Cleveland, since Francisco Mejia was rumored to be heading to Milwaukee as part of the return. Instead Mejia continues to rake at Double-A, hitting .369 with 8 HR and 25 RBI over 38 games.

Known more as a pure hitter, as opposed to a power threat, Mejia posted back-to-back 2 HR days last week, picking up 9 RBI and 5 R in the process (he’s gone 6-10 in the two game stretch), and has 5 HR over his past five games. Of course, despite the uptick in power (he also has 13 doubles and 1 triple) he hasn’t sacrificed his approach: Read more