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Rookie Report: Recent MLB Prospect Call-Ups (Week 22)


Same report, new management this week, as I will take over the Rookie Report for Max for the remainder of the season. I've been writing about the hot prospects dynasty owners should be keeping an eye on this year, and now I'll also be diving into the best rookies for fantasy owners to pay attention to right now.

Until we see Eloy Jimenez or Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (finally) called up, Michael Kopech will remain the biggest "new" rookie in fantasy baseball. Kopech has electric stuff and his fantasy potential is the highest of just about any pitching prospect out there. That being said, that doesn't mean there aren't other top-tier prospects out there who are making their way to the majors. Top second base prospect Luis Urias made his major league debut this week for the San Diego Padres after putting up some eye-popping numbers in the minors over the last month.

Urias is one of two new additions this week, as he and Ryan Burr join the report. To make room for them, Bryse Wilson and Willie Calhoun have both been bumped from the list after they were both optioned back to the minors. So without further ado, let's go over this week's report.

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Prospect Call-Ups and Rookie Performances

Michael Kopech (SP, CWS)

After rain short-circuited his debut, Kopech bounced back to earn his first career win on Sunday. Over six innings, he allowed one run on seven hits while striking out four against the Tigers in a 7-2 White Sox win. As a die-hard White Sox fan for almost half my life now, seeing Kopech's 22.2 percent strikeout rate and 10.9 percent swinging strike rate has me excited about both his future fantasy and real-world potential. The one big concern that all fantasy owners need to monitor with Kopech is whether or not his wild streak will reappear. Over eight innings of work, Kopech has not allowed a walk yet, but he has hit three batters. Growing pains are to be expected with any rookie pitcher, but Kopech's history with control issues does give some pause to the growing hype around his fantasy impact this season. Going forward through the rest of this year, Kopech should be owned and started in almost all leagues, but it wouldn't hurt for fantasy owners to be a little more selective of when they start him based on the matchups.

Luis Urias (2B, SDP)

After going 0-for-3 with a walk in his major league debut, Urias rebounded with a 3-for-5 performance in his next game with a double and a run scored. This comes after he put together a 15-game hitting streak in Triple-A, during which he hit seven doubles and three triples with six RBI and 15 runs scored. Looking at Urias' career numbers, he doesn't have one single category that he will make a difference in fantasy, but he will put together solid numbers in all categories across the board, especially for a second baseman. Owners looking for a boost during the fantasy playoffs should definitely consider Urias as a good middle infield option in 12-team leagues and a starting second baseman in 14-team and deeper leagues.

Ryan Burr (RP, CWS)

Out of the players in this week's report, Burr likely has the most limited fantasy value for the rest of this year. That being said, he can still provide a boost in some leagues as a high-strikeout middle reliever. Over four years in the minors, Burr has posted a 10.8 K/9, and in his major league debut this week he struck out two while allowing no hits and no walks over 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Burr is only ownable in 16-team leagues or leagues that count K/9, but in those leagues, he should provide a solid boost to your rate numbers.

 

Quick Hits

Jeff McNeil (2B/3B, NYM)

This last week has been a little slower for McNeil at the plate, but he is still putting up good numbers overall. He has hit just .261 over his last 26 plate appearances with one triple, three walks, and two stolen bases. He's still a solid fantasy rookie, and his positional flexibility should help provide a boost to teams making a fantasy playoff run.

Danny Jansen (C, TOR)

Over four games this last week, Jansen has gone 3-for-10 with two doubles, two runs scored and a 2:1 K:BB ratio. While there is value and some good potential for Jansen in the future, he's not looking right now like he will have much of an impact in fantasy playoffs this year because of his limited playing time. In 14-team or deeper leagues he's worth owning, but for all other redraft leagues, he should be dropped until his playing time ticks up.

Taylor Ward (3B, LAA)

After a good start to his career, the bat has fallen almost completely silent for Ward. He has just two hits over his last 28 plate appearances, with 11 strikeouts and two walks during that span. Like Jansen, Ward has good potential value for the future, but for right now he shouldn't be owned in any redraft leagues.

Ronald Acuna (OF, ATL)

Now is the time to panic on Acuna, as he is hitting only .280 with only one home run over his last six games. Obviously, we were all wrong on Acuna, and he should be dropped in all leagues, especially ones I'm in. Please?

Juan Soto (OF, WAS)

Yet another rookie who is struggling and should be dropped in all leagues that I am in. Over 30 plate appearances this past week, Soto is hitting just .296 with one home run and five RBI. Truly such a disappointing week for Soto.

Miguel Andujar (3B, NYY)

Andujar has been on a bit of a hot streak over his last six games, hitting .367 with two home runs, eight RBI and four strikeouts to one walk. He has been one of the better third basemen in fantasy this season, and he is continuing to put together what would normally be a very strong Rookie of the Year case. But with the guy in Anaheim, Andujar faces an uphill battle in that race.

Shohei Ohtani (SP/DH, LAA) 

OK, yeah, I completely whiffed on Ohtani this year. I thought he would be alright, but would not live up to all the hype he got during the offseason. While he's still working his way back to potentially pitching again this season, Ohtani is hitting .417 with two home runs and five RBI over his last six games - only two of which he started. The only slight concern is that he has a 10:1 K:BB ratio over his last 28 plate appearances, but there are no signs yet that he's going to just stop hitting.

Seranthony Dominguez (RP, PHI)

Strikeout numbers are still looking good for Dominguez with five over his last 2 2/3 innings this past week. Allowing three runs on two hits and a walk isn't quite as good though. Now over 10 appearances in August, Dominguez has an 8.00 ERA with 13 strikeouts over nine innings.

Gleyber Torres (2B/SS, NYY)

Hitting .409 with two home runs over the last week, Torres' bat is heating back up after starting off August hitting .122 over 13 games. What's also good to see is his 5:7 K:BB ratio over 29 plate appearances. If he's available in your league, grab him now for a good boost in the fantasy playoffs.

Jake Bauers (1B, TB)

Bauers continues to look lost at the plate this week, hitting .125 with no extra-base hits and a 7:2 K:BB ratio over 20 plate appearances. There's no reason to be hanging on to Bauers in any redraft league at this point.

 

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