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Juan Soto is running the major leagues. Is that an overstatement? Absolutely. Will that be an overstatement in three years? Probably still yes but there's a shot the answer is no. That's what makes Soto so intriguing to watch.

In addition to Soto continuing his high-level play early in his career, we are seeing a couple of potential impact pitchers get the call up to the majors; Shane Bieber and Dennis Santana were both called up this week. We saw Dylan Cozens get the call too, but unfortunately still no signs of Vlad, Senzel, Kopech, or Eloy making their way to the bigs. They will come. Have patience if you are stashing.

Players on the list last week but not this week include Luiz Gohara, Freddy Peralta, Franmil Reyes, and Mike Soroka. Players joining (or-rejoining) the list are Ronald Acuna, Shane Bieber, Dennis Santana, and Dylan Cozens.

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Prospect Call-Ups and Rookie Performances

Shane Bieber (SP, CLE)

Bieber will make his MLB debut on Thursday with a start against the Twins. Considering the possible opponents he could have ended up with, the Twins are one of the easier matchups for him. I'm expecting a quality start from Bieber should Francona allow him to pitch that deep into the game. I don't see why he wouldn't; Bieber is the owner of a 61:3 K:BB over 65.1 IP across AA and AAA this year. And he's averaging over six innings per start. I don't know whether Bieber will be as dominant in the majors as he was in the minors (hint: it's extremely unlikely), but a pitcher with his elite command and control will have at least some success in the majors because it's a lot easier for stuff to play up with elite command. I'd be comfortable rolling Bieber out for his Thursday matchup.

Beyond Thursday, it's unclear what the plans are for him. Adam Plutko, the fifth starter for the Indians, was optioned to AAA, but that's likely just because they needed to make space for Bieber. Plutko will remain on his same schedule so he could theoretically be recalled after one turn through the rotation, but I'd imagine that the Indians are smart enough to keep Bieber in the rotation if he pitches well enough. We'll see what happens, but either way, it's time for some Bieber Fever.

Dennis Santana (SP, LAD)

Santana has made a rapid ascent through the minors over the past season and change. After starting the 2017 season in A-ball, Santana will make his MLB debut on Saturday against the Rockies. The downside of that is that he will be making his first career start in Coors Field. The upside is that he is actually in the rotation and it would seem that he is here to stay, at least for the time being, thanks to Kenta Maeda's injury. Santana owns an 11.7 K/9 across 49.2 AA and AAA innings this year and a K:BB of over 4. It's possible that Santana has the highest upside of any arm of any Dodgers prospect outside of Walker Buehler, so we could be seeing something special here with Santana. Unfortunately, the debut comes in Coors. But that means it can only get better, park-wise, from here.

Dylan Cozens (OF, PHI)

Rhys Hoskins' Bash Brother finally made it to the major leagues, thanks to Hoskins himself going on the disabled list. For real life purposes Cozens is not a huge prospect; he does not have good plate discipline, his defense is average at best, and he can't run the bases that well. For fantasy, though, he can be valuable depending on the amount of pop he provides. I'm hesitant to recommend that anyone invest in a hitter who strikes out nearly 40% of the time in the minor leagues, but Cozens has hit 76 HR in his last 318 minor league games. The power is real but he might not ever be able to tap into it if he can't make contact. Cozens should just go on watch lists for now.

Juan Soto (OF, WAS)

Juan Soto is still pretty good at baseball. Shocker. This past week, he went 9/22 with 3 doubles, 1 RBI, 2 R, 2 BB, and 3 K. He also had an insane two-strike RBI single against the Orioles last night (video here). Soto's two-strike approach is very good and it bodes well for him that he has such good plate discipline for a 19-year-old. Plus, he hit lead off for the first time on Wednesday night. The dude does everything. Go get him if you still can.

Ronald Acuna (OF, ATL)

Acuna was placed on the disabled list with a mild ACL sprain after he landed awkwardly on his leg while beating out a single. Acuna said he is "not worried" about going on the disabled list, but Acuna is also "not a doctor," so there's no telling when he will be allowed to return to playing. For now, stash Acuna if you have the DL space. Hopefully the enigmatic youngster will reenter the lineup in short order, for the good of our fantasy teams and baseball in general. Young stars are always a good thing.

Nick Kingham (SP, PIT)

The last sentence in my Kingham blurb for last week was "Kingham will be the next man up whenever the Pirates need a starter but there is no telling when that will be." That was on Tuesday; Ivan Nova went on the disabled list and Kingham was recalled to start in his place. He was solid but not great in his spot start: 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 H, 2 BB, 4 K. He only threw 84 pitches so he likely could have finished out the inning to nab the quality start, but considering that he was losing steam as he labored through the sixth inning I can't fault Clint Hurdle for going to his bullpen. Kingham now owns a 3.75 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, and 25:4 K:BB ratio through 24 MLB innings pitched. He lines up to face the Cardinals on Sunday before the team has to make a decision about whether they want to keep him in the rotation.

Quick Hits

Seranthony Dominguez (RP, PHI)

Dominguez over the past week: 2.2 IP, 4 K, 1 H. His ERA is a pristine 0.00 on the season.

Walker Buehler (SP, LAD)

Buehler's lone start this past week (against the Padres): 7 IP, 8 K, 4 H, 1 ER. He has now gone 16 innings without walking a batter.

Josh Hader (RP, MIL) 

With Knebel back save opportunities will be few and far between for Hader. No matter, because this past week he made one appearance (against the Mets) and threw two scoreless innings. He allowed one hit, walked none, and struck out four. We're living in Hader's world.

Shohei Ohtani (SP/DH, LAA)

Ohtani had trouble locating some of his pitches in his Wednesday start against the Tigers, but a line of 5 IP, 5 K, 3 BB, 3 H, 1 ER is not terrible. His ERA is 3.18 and his triple-slash is .291/.376/.553.

Gleyber Torres (2B/3B, NYY)

Torres got a walk-off single for the Yankees on Tuesday night to complete the Yankees' comeback against the Astros. The worst part about it was that I was at the game and had to watch all the Yankees fans around me be happy. Isn't that the worst?

Oh, and Gleyber is now triple-slashing .321/.380/.596 with 9 HR on the year. Update: I still hate the Yankees.

 

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