It’s always frustrating for fantasy owners when a player hits the IL, but when you don’t have a reason or a timeframe for a return that frustration is amped up even further. In the current environment teams are not providing reasons for players hitting the IL, meaning the speculation will run wild.
Today we learned that the Phillies’ Scott Kingery had been placed on the 10-day IL, with no reason given. Will he be ready for Opening Day? Is the injury serious? Minor? Who knows, but fantasy owners need to be prepared for the worst.
Kingery was expected to open the season as Philadelphia’s second baseman, with Jean Segura manning third base. If Kingery’s sidelined, how will the Phillies fill the void? They have ample veteran options, like Logan Forsythe, Josh Harrison and Neil Walker, but in a 60 game sprint could the team make a bigger splash?
One of the team’s top prospects, Alec Bohm, is included in the 60-man player pool and we had projected him to debut in 2020 before the start of the season was delayed. A first round pick in 2018, he certainly offers the most upside in the group. We compared him to Rhys Hoskins in our writeup, as we said:
To this point it’s possible that he’s sacrificed a little bit of his power in favor of his approach, which is likely his strongest skill:
- Strikeouts – 13.5%
- Walks – 10.6%
- SwStr% – 7.7%
It’s a makeup that resembles that of Rhys Hoskins (at Triple-A in 2017 he posted a 15.8% strikeout rate, 13.5% walk rate and 6.3% SwStr%), and we know the type of instant impact he made. Maybe Bohm doesn’t explode quite at that level, but as he matures don’t be surprised to see the power improve to go along with the potential for a strong average.
He was always going to be considered for the DH spot, but the absence of Kingery could almost ensure Bohm an opportunity to be a part of Philadelphia’s plans on Opening Day. He played across three levels in 2019, including Double-A where he hit .269 with 14 HR and 42 RBI over 270 PA. Most important was that he continued to show a strong approach, with a 7.3% SwStr% leading to a 14.1% strikeout rate and 10.4% walk rate.
At 23-years old (he’ll turn 24 in August), a team with World Series aspirations could be willing to start Bohm’s clock even though they don’t have to. They have a roster that can win today, and that should mean putting your best talent on the field.
Whether Kingery is healthy or not, you can argue Bohm makes sense for the roster. However if Kingery is forced to miss the start of the season, he should be a near lock and a must own option. Now is the time to stash him before it’s too late.
Fantasy Waiver Wire Guidelines:
- 10 Team League – Worthy Add
- 12 Team League – Must Add
- 14+ Team League – Must Add
- NL-Only League – Must Add
- Keeper/Dynasty – Good Target
Sources – Fangraphs, MLB.com
Make sure to check out all of our 2020 prospect rankings: