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

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:


Already have an account? Log in here.


Forgot Password


Hot Prospects To Watch - Oneil Cruz, Sean Murphy, Jorge Mateo And More

As we close the book on July this week, the biggest thing to watch for is the trade deadline. That comes at 4 pm ET on Wednesday, July 31. There have already been some notable names moved this month -- Andrew Cashner, Homer Bailey, Tyler White, Derek Holland, Eric Sogard, Marcus Stroman, Jordan Lyles, Trevor Bauer, Franmil Reyes, Yasiel Puig and Jason Vargas -- but expect that list to grow by deadline's end, especially with no waiver period in August in 2019.

Most of these trades involve contenders beefing up for the stretch run, but the flip side often includes notable prospects on the move to rebuilding clubs. In some cases, the minor leaguers exchanged could land in a better situation that speeds up their ascent to the big leagues. Cincy's top prospect, outfielder Taylor Trammell, moves to a crowded outfield picture in SD in a three-team deal that also included the Friars' No. 7 prospect in southpaw Logan Allen heading to Cleveland.

Lefty Anthony Kay and right-hander Simeon Woods-Richardson were shipped from the Mets to the Blue Jays in the Stroman package on Sunday. Kay and Woods-Richardson become the No. 5 and No. 7 prospects, respectively, for the Jays immediately. Kay struggled since being called up to Triple-A, but he's closer to a big league debut for a Toronto team already stacked with young prospects.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!


Cruz Walks The Plank To Altoona

Oneil Cruz - SS, Pittsburgh Pirates

Pittsburgh's No. 3 prospect and No. 62 overall was promoted from High-A Bradenton to Double-A Altoona on Tuesday after he hit .301/.345/.515 with seven home runs, 16 RBI and seven stolen bases in 35 games in the Florida League.

The left-handed hitter fractured his right foot in late April and thus hasn't had as much playing time as hoped, but he's been great when he's been on the field in the minors. Since his return on June 30, Cruz ranked second in Class A Advanced with a .330 batting average and .960 OPS.

Originally signed by the Dodgers, the 20-year-old has been a prospect to watch because of plus raw power and a plus arm on defense. The Dominican isn't your prototypical shortstop, however, standing at 6-foot-6 and 175 pounds. He can run a little bit despite his size, but a move to the hot corner at the higher levels is probably inevitable.

Cruz should gain more raw power as he matures and fills out physically, which makes him a bat to watch in Pittsburgh's organization. Don't expect him to play the 6 in the Show, but Cruz's bat should make him fantasy relevant when he gets the call in a few years.


Murphy Making Up For Lost Time

Sean Murphy - C, Oakland Athletics

Similar to Cruz, Murphy missed a big chunk of time with a torn meniscus in his left knee. But he's back now and is hitting .313 with six long balls and 10 RBI in 10 games (seven in the Rookie League), including three dingers for Triple-A Las Vegas last Friday. Overall, he's batting .349/.422/.640 with six homers and 18 RBI in 22 games for the Aviators.

The 24-year-old was a third-round pick in 2016 and is the No. 4-ranked catching prospect in all of baseball. He also performed well at Double-A in 2018, although he was slowed by an injury that year as well. He's an above-average defender behind the plate with an excellent arm. Murphy is probably major-league ready right now with the glove.

With the bat he shows fine plate discipline and makes enough contact to be one of the better fantasy backstops once he's in the big leagues full time. It makes more sense to keep him in the minors the rest of 2019 given his injuries the last two years, but Murphy should be catching regularly for Oakland at some point in 2020, if not sooner.


Mateo Enjoying PCL

Jorge Mateo - SS/2B, Oakland Athletics 

What a turnaround it's been for Mateo in 2019. He hit just .230/.280/.353 with three home runs, 45 RBI and 25 stolen bases in 131 games for Triple-A Nashville in 2018, but he's turned it around in the Pacific Coast League for Triple-A Las Vegas to the tune of a .302/.339/.537 slash line, 17 homers, 25 doubles, 13 triples, 72 RBI and 20 thefts in 95 games.

Oakland's No. 4 prospect was acquired from the Yankees in the Sonny Gray deal in 2017. The 24-year-old has plus speed -- he stole 82 bags in 2015 and 52 in 2017 -- but his lack of plate discipline is a real concern. Mateo struck out 139 times and walked just 29 times in 2018. He's walked 22 times and fanned 116 times in 460 plate appearances this year.

He has plenty of range up the middle and a strong arm on defense, but it's fair to wonder if his hitter-friendly environment in Vegas is a mirage for the underlying concerns with his profile. Mateo's speed and occasional pop makes him an intriguing prospect, but he also has a low floor and may not even develop into an everyday player at the next level.


Sixto Numero Uno In Miami

Sixto Sanchez - SP, Miami Marlins

The 21-year-old didn't fare quite so well in two starts at High-A Jupiter to kick off his Marlins tenure (six earned runs in 11 innings), but he's been much better since his promotion to the Double-A Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp. Sanchez tossed seven scoreless frames in his last start and is 7-4 with a 2.96 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, 83 strikeouts and 15 walks in 82 innings over 14 starts.

The Dominican right-hander has some of the most electric stuff of any pitching prospect, which is why the Fish demanded he be included in the package that sent J.T. Realmuto to Philly earlier this year. He possesses a four-seamer that can reach triple digits but also induces plenty of ground balls with his two-seamer. If his offspeed offerings develop more, he could be downright nasty at the next level.

Injuries have set Sanchez back a bit, but the 6-foot, 185-pounder is gaining steam and should headline the front of Miami's rotation for years to come, possibly as soon as early 2020. Keep him stashed now in keeper/dynasty leagues. Sanchez is Miami's top prospect in the organization and is ranked as the No. 6 right-handed arm in the minors.

More MLB Prospects Analysis

More Recent Articles


Week 12 Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

Below you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football weekly rankings, tiers, player news and stats for the 2019 NFL season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Weekly PPR Rankings Weekly Half-PPR Rankings Weekly Standard Rankings Dynasty League Rankings     Fantasy... Read More

Colts Conundrum: What To Do With Marlon Mack Hurt

Hello, my name is Eric Samulski, and I spent all my FAAB on Brian Hill last week. Phew! I’m glad we got that out of the way. Now that that’s on the table, we can talk honestly about this week's biggest running back decision: How the Colts will replace Marlon Mack, who just underwent surgery on... Read More

NFL Survivor Pool Picks (Week 12) - Targets and Avoids

Sunday was one of the worst Sunday's Vegas has had all season and remaining entrants in survivor pools nearly had the same fate. However, the Vikings rallied from a 20-0 halftime deficit, the 49ers scored late, and the Cowboys win was much narrower than it should have been. The Saints, Bills, and Ravens took care... Read More

Offensive Line Rankings Analysis: Week 12

Apologies for not making it out last week. I welcomed my daughter into the world, and while I would have loved the distraction of looking at the ability of offensive lines, that wasn't going to happen. Moving onto Week 12, the outcome of your season-long leagues is now taking shape and you know if you... Read More

Fantasy Football Disaster Recovery: Kenny Golladay

Welcome to Disaster Recovery, where each week I'll examine why your studs played like duds. This isn't a place to find out why you should have sat a player for somebody else on your bench. Disaster Recovery is here to examine the guys who you didn't think twice about starting and to help you decide if you should... Read More

Wide Receiver Leaderboards Entering the Final Stretch - NFL Next Gen Stats

We've consumed our first "double-digit week" set of games. That means we've entered the final part of the season and, in fact, the fantasy football playoffs are closer than you may realize. There are just three more weeks to go until we hit Week 14 and celebrate our presence in the run for the chip,... Read More

Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Jeff Driskel, Deebo Samuel, Kenyan Drake

Whether due to their own play, the play of others, or injuries, players' stock increases and decreases on a weekly basis. Perhaps more than any other, the NFL is a league that experiences ups and downs at a rapid pace. With only 16 games, there’s little room for error and seemingly endless opportunities for improvement.... Read More

Deeper League Free Agent Pickups for Week 12

Rotoballers, if you're not active on the waiver wire this time of year, there are only two reasonable explanations: 1) You're sitting at 3-8 (or worse) and don't find it enjoyable to play spoiler to your league mates, or 2) You're 8-3 (or better) and have nothing but matchup-proof studs on your starting lineup and... Read More

FAAB Bidding - Week 12 Waiver Wire Targets

Assisting our famous waiver wire pickups list, and our weekly waiver wire columns by position, this column focuses on suggested waiver wire bidding percentages for fantasy football owners in leagues using a Free Agent Acquisition Budget (FAAB). As a caveat, these prices do not by any means indicate how much these free agent players will... Read More

Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups & Adds

This could be the most exciting installment of waiver wire adds in a while. Not that any of these choices are necessarily league-winners but at least we have a bunch of new names to ponder. Bye weeks are nearly over but this one will be particularly tough with the high-scoring Chiefs, Vikings, Chargers, and Cardinals... Read More

Week 12 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Almost out of time to make that last push for the playoffs--no time like the present to squeak out a win because you picked the right defense. Below are RotoBaller's Week 12 defense tiers and rankings, or which defenses to stream, start and target off the waiver wire for Week 12 of the NFL and... Read More

Week 12 Kicker Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

It's Week 12, and the fantasy football playoffs are just around the corner. Teams are jostling for playoff position both in the real world and the fantasy world. You gotta have the right kicker at the right time in the right matchup, and it matters now more than ever. The margin for error in these... Read More

Running Back Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 12

The regular season continues to advance at a relentless pace as we have now entered the planning process for Week 12. Some of you are concentrating on building lineups that will commandeer a spot in the fantasy playoffs, while others are making slight adjustments to teams that have already secured their place in the postseason.... Read More

Wide Receiver Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 12

Week 11 is behind us and we're getting closer and closer to the end of the fantasy regular season. For some of us, Week 12 represents the final chance to get into the postseason, while for others we have another week or two left. Here, to help you get ready for the playoffs, is a... Read More

Week 12 Tight End Waiver Wire Picks and Streamers

With fantasy football leagues only a couple weeks away from their playoffs, this is not the time for teams to be short a tight end. Not only do fantasy footballers have no Travis Kelce or Hunter Henry during this crucial week in their fantasy seasons, they do not get to take advantage of using a... Read More