Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Fantasy Baseball Rookie Risers/Fallers (Week 16)


Well, the Major League season is already 47% of the way done. Some owners think that they are on their way to victory while others are patiently waiting for things to turn around. Still, while all the victory laps are being taken, the smart owner is looking forward to the rest of the year and finding what value can still be had. While the season always seems to move quickly, the dog days of summer are still upon us.

Now that we are rolling along, so too are the call-ups. This week, the Rotoballer team keeps tabs on all the new names and faces, with insight into their fantasy value to help any team. For owners looking for a cheap spark, look no further.

For redraft, dynasty, or general fantasy players knowing the new prospects is key to begin to plan out FAAB bids and waiver claims. Target or avoid these players to helps teams keep their competitive windows open.

Editor's Note: Get our 2020 MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our draft kit, premium rankings, player projections and outlooks, our top sleepers, dynasty and prospect rankings, 20 preseason and in-season lineup tools, and over 200 days of expert DFS research and tools. Sign Up Now!

 

Rookie Debuts - Stock Up

These players helped their fantasy value with solid debut weeks for their respective team. If not on owners's radars, these players need to be.

 

Bubba Starling (OF, KC)

Season line: 20 ABs, six hits, five runs, and one steal

After featuring on last week’s AL-Only waiver primer, Starling got the call to Kansas City and is now the starting centerfielder for the foreseeable future. With Terrance Gore already DFA’d and Billy Hamilton sure to be moved at the deadline, Starling enters a team with clear needs in the outfield. A former first-round selection by the Royals, Starling has taken his time through the minors, and warts have appeared on what was a blue-chip stock on draft night. For one, the power has not been there, and while others are enjoying the new ball, Starling is at best the same from last year’s power output.

Still, the hit tool and glove/speed combo will make him a useful regular for the Royals. That is if he can keep hitting. A career .244 hitter in the minor, last year Starling posted a .257 batting line, and this year that was up to .310 before the call. The bat is key because there is a clear ceiling on his power and the speed has not been there. After posting 20-steal seasons in the low minors, Starling seems to be more of a 10-12 range option for fantasy owners. Expect Starling to be up the rest of the way, and hit for an average worthy of an OF3 play in mixed leagues. At the very least, the playing time floor makes him an asset to own.

 

Ian Gibaut (RP, TB)

Season line: 2.0 innings, two earned runs, and two Ks

Typically righty-specialists do not get two paragraphs for their debut, but Gibaut has elite stuff that he can bring to fantasy rosters. A former 11th-round selection by the Rays, Gibaut was added to the 40-man back in November. Flashing a plus fastball and slider combo, Gibaut also has a changeup that has received improved grades at each step up the ladder. While the Rays have been inconsistent with a closer role this year, if he can flash the same stuff, Gibaut is a clear candidate to open games or shut them down in the 8th.

While he has allowed two runs in his first two innings with the Rays, the numbers back at Triple-A were quite good. Over 10 innings he recorded 16 Ks and did not allow a homer. 2018 was his best season in professional ball, as he posted a 2.09 ERA and 1.00 WHIP. Add in 75 Ks over 56 innings pitched, and he put together one of the better minor league seasons for a reliever. While the impact will be tied to a role, if there is an arm to bet on, Gibaut is the name in the second half.

 

Andres Munoz (RP, SD)

Season line: 4.1 innings, zero earned runs, and six Ks

Entering the year as a mid-20s prospect for the Padres, Munoz turned a red-hot start onto an earlier than expected call. In 37 games between Double-A and Triple-A this year, Munoz posted an ERA of 2.76 and a 1.20 WHIP. Add in the 58:18 K:BB ratio, and the ratios are not only the best of his career, but clearly in the range to matter in fantasy leagues. While concerns will remain on his ability to command the fastball, the floor is much higher than many expected coming into this year. In fact, over stretches he has allowed more walks than hits, showing that even with some wildness, he can still generate outs.

The carrying pitch is the fastball, which some scouts grade as an 80. After that, there is a sharp drop with an average slider and a developing changeup. While there are concerns that Munoz lacks a true outpitch, and might struggle with the new power environment in the Majors, at the end of the day, the stuff is real. In terms of the relievers on this list, Munoz might have the most extended stay in the Bigs and could be a multi-K reliever each appearance. The WHIP numbers might jump after the call, but for now, the arm is a real weapon after a decent start to his career.

Rookie Debuts - Stock Down

These players hurt their fantasy value during their first week of play.

Luis Escobar (RP, PIT)

Season line: 3.1 innings, zero earned runs, and one K

Another reliever making his debut in the past few weeks, Escobar entered the year just outside the top-10 on most Pirate prospect lists. The main tools are a plus 95-mph fastball, and plus curveball, with a 60/40 split during his time in the minors. While he has a changeup listed on the scouting report, he has had enough issues commanding the pitch that it will be a non-factor this season. If Escobar can spend time developing that pitch in the offseason, this is a different profile, but for now, a two-pitch reliever with velocity seems to be the fit.

The minor league numbers are excellent, with a 1.24 WHIP and 472 Ks in 479 total innings. The command improved with each step up the ladder, and overall, the tools are trending in the right direction. The ceiling is still reliant on the pitch-mix, and without a triple-digit fastball, Escobar is a middle-of-the-road arm with today’s league. Even with success so far in his career, his inability to put hitters away deep in the count will hurt him. For now the stock is down when compared to other arms as there is just not enough in the profile to allow him to stand out. Add in that he relies on the fastball, and expect the NL Central to punish him.

More MLB Prospects Analysis




Today’s Most Viewed Players

More Recent Articles

 

Biggest Breakouts of 2019: Quarterback

2019 was a very interesting season of fantasy football, to say the least. It's safe to say no one was banking on the season that we saw from Lamar Jackson but he wasn't the only one to stand out. At the quarterback position, we saw some really exciting players start to shine and some older... Read More


Goodbye Runners, Hello Pass-Catching RBs: 2019 Season Trends

As the 2019 summer kept going we all had two things in our minds with regard to September's fantasy drafts and both of them were related to running backs: Where in the world are Ezekiel Elliott and Melvin Gordon and when will they be back? It made sense back then (and it still does now,... Read More


Where Does 2019 Rank Historically Among ADP Movers?

I have worked on a season-review series of articles in which I have analyzed the biggest winners and losers in terms of ADP entering draft season compared to the end of the year final results. It was plenty of fun looking back at the gambles most of us took which ultimately paid off, but also... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Tight End

2019 was not the record-breaking season for tight ends 2018 was. San Francisco’s George Kittle (most receiving yards for a TE in a season) and Philadelphia’s Zach Ertz (most receptions for a TE in a season) did not break the records they set last season, although both were fine for fantasy players. Kansas City’s Travis... Read More


Rushing Quarterbacks Are Becoming Necessary

The 2019 fantasy season is over. We are all thinking about what to do come 2020 draft day. So let me ask you something. What if I offer you the chance of drafting a quarterback who is a lock to finish the season with 270 fantasy points? Would you take him and make him your... Read More


Biggest Breakouts Of 2019: Wide Receivers

As we enter the initial phase of offseason activities you have recently completed a painstaking process of creating and managing rosters, with the goal of winning fantasy championships in 2019. Now, many of you have already shifted your focus toward planning your drafts in Best Ball and redraft leagues, while others are contemplating how you... Read More


Tight End ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward their owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Running Back ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, a sure-fire player is expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they end up as a season-long dud, though,... Read More


Biggest Surprises of 2019: Tight End

The 2019 NFL season was anything but predictable. I mean, the Tennessee Titans made the AFC title game! Andrew Luck retired right before the season! [Insert one of many, many other things here, because all lists need three items but I couldn't decide between all the possible third options.] One position where things at the... Read More


Wide Receiver Risers and Fallers: 2019 Season Review

We continue our series covering the biggest risers and fallers of 2019 with the wide receiver position. I'll look at both 2018 and 2019 statistical outcomes from every player, contrast their performances, calculate differences in each category and come up with the most prominent names going forward. This past season, receivers didn't dominate in fantasy,... Read More


Wide Receiver ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


XFL Fantasy Football Rankings (Preseason)

As of this writing, there is exactly one month until XFL regular-season action begins. On February 8, the latest upstart professional league will kickoff (again) with spring football. It goes without saying that we hope it goes better than the first time, back in 2001, and lasts longer than the AAF. Before you settle in... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Quarterback

The 2019 NFL season is over, and it's time to look back on what happened. 2019 was a year where some quarterbacks -- Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen -- leaped up to the top of the fantasy charts, while other guys faded from where they were expected to perform. Today, I want to talk about three... Read More


Quarterback ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward their owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Biggest Breakouts of 2019: Running Back

The 2019 fantasy football was filled with plenty of surprises across the board. Between guys like Devante Parker breaking out and David Johnson being a total dud, there was plenty of action that kept the fantasy season interesting. At the running back position, there were some very interesting young names that took off and broke... Read More