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Top 30 Impact Prospects for Redraft Leagues (Week 15)


The MLB All-Star Break is here and rosters are frozen but things could get interesting once play resumes later this week. When that happens, there will be less than three weeks to go before the trade deadline. Some prospects will be heading to new teams and new opportunities while others will simply rise up to fill holes created by trades.

A couple of moves of note occurred before the break. Tampa Bay’s Nathaniel Lowe’s recently earned another shot in the Majors with injuries taking a bite out of the Rays’ roster. Oakland’s injury-prone hurler, Jesus Luzardo, has fallen off the list for now given the glum diagnosis on his most recent injury, which will keep him out a minimum of 4-6 weeks.

The Cardinals, Padres, and Twins have new prospects on the list this week. Note: Brendan McKay was demoted to the minors for the all-star break but the team plans to recall him when his next turn in the rotation comes up. As a result, he has not been included on this week’s list since he’s not expected to play in minors.

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Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (1-10)

1. Kyle Tucker, OF, Astros (AAA) (ETA: July)

Tucker is still hitting OK at the Triple-A level but he’s cooled off a bit from his previous scorching play. The strikeouts have piled up recently with 33 in 25 June games, and he has yet to steal a base or hit a home run in July. Still, hitting 24 home runs in 81 games is mighty impressive and his overall OPS remains strong at .941. The Astros probably don’t want to trade Tucker but he’s a luxury right now and they may have to rip off the bandaid to obtain a quality pitcher with multiple seasons of control.

2. Bo Bichette, SS, Blue Jays (AAA) (ETA: July)

There’s not much more that Bichette can do to prove he’s ready for a shot at The Show. He’s now hitting .335 in 41 Triple-A games and getting on base at a regular clip through any means necessary; his on-base percentage sits at .409, which would place him fifth in the league if he had enough at-bats to qualify. He’s also hitting for power and stealing bases. But Toronto also has veterans Eric Sogard and Freddy Galvis playing well. They could each potentially bring in a modest return at the trade deadline (think B- or C-level relief prospect) but the latter player also has a team-friendly option for 2020. And both players have been great leaders for the young players in Toronto and may be worth more to the Jays than contending teams.

3. Carter Kieboom, SS, Nationals (AAA) (ETA: July)

Washington finds itself precariously holding onto a wild card slot right now and may need a spark to pull away from teams in the second half of the season. Veteran second baseman Brian Dozier has been heating up with the summer weather which creates a bit of an obstacle but Kieboom could perhaps take part in a second base/shortstop rotation to help keep the veteran middle infielders healthy and fresh for the playoffs. The young middle infielder has a 1.022 OPS through 67 Triple-A games.

4. Luis Urias, 2B, Padres (AAA) (ETA: July)

Urias is still waiting for another shot with the Padres but he’s cooled down a bit recently after his blistering play earlier in the season. Still, his OPS remains above 1.000 through 70 games. Urias is hitting .273 over the past 10 games with a BB-K of 5-6 but he hasn’t hit a home run or steal a base over that stretch.

5. Adbert Alzolay, RHP, Cubs (AAA) (ETA: July)

Alzolay was sent back to Triple-A after an uneven MLB performance that saw him allow a ton of baserunners with 12 hits and seven walks in 11.1 innings. On the encouraging side, the young starter struck out 12 batters while averaging 94 mph with his fastball and showing a good changeup. He should be back up soon but could also be used as trade bait for a more experienced hurler given that Alzolay’s long-term ceiling is modest.

6. Will Smith, C, Dodgers (AAA) (ETA: July)

Smith has already been optioned to the minors three times by the Dodgers this season but the power-hitting catcher hasn’t let all that traveling throw off his game. He’s having an outstanding season at both the MLB and Triple-A levels. He’s hitting .344 with six homers and a BB-K of 6-5 over his past 10 minor league games. With both of the Dodgers’ catchers posting an identical OPS of .675, it’s possible Smith could earn even more big league playing time down the stretch if he keeps hitting like this and can earn the trust of the Dodgers’ pitchers.

7. Jordan Romano, RHP, Blue Jays (AAA) (ETA: July)

Toronto closer Ken Giles recently pitched in back-to-back-to-back games as the team showcases him for a potential deal. He could stick with the Jays because he’s solidified himself as one of the best closers in the game but he’s a luxury on a rebuilding team. That move would then open up the closer’s role for Romano, who showed well earlier this year but got caught in a numbers game. The young hurler just needs to work on suppressing the home run ball.

8. Isan Diaz, 2B, Marlins (AAA) (ETA: July)

Diaz is starting to get snapped up in dynasty leagues and he could soon be of help in redraft leagues, too. He’s on an impressive 10-game streak that’s seen him hit for home runs, steal three bases and post a BB-K of 9-11. Diaz now has 20 home runs and 41 steals in 83 games. The strikeouts are of some concern but also come as a tradeoff for the power output.

9. Luis Robert, OF, White Sox (AAA) (ETA: late July) 

Robert will join Triple-A — his third level this year — after he appears in the MLB Futures Game. His stint in Double-A will end on a hot streak that saw him hit .300 over his last 10 games. He also stole seven bases during that stretch. And one of the most positive signs was his BB-K, which was a respectable 3-9 compared to his season total of 17-74 through 75 games.

10. Jo Adell, OF, Angels (AA) (ETA: August)

Adell was recently selected to the MLB Futures Game and has a bright future in the game. He entered the break with a 1.037 OPS through 24 Double-A games. The strikeouts have piled up a little bit recently and his BB-K is 3-13 over the past 10 games. If the Angels continue to hang around the playoff race, Adell could be a weapon later on this season if he continues to hit well. He has excellent make-up/maturity to go with his outstanding athleticism, which would help him handle the jump.

 

Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (11-20)

11. Kyle Wright, RHP, Braves (AAA) (ETA: July)

Wright is really rolling now. Over his past four starts, the right-hander has allowed just four earned runs in 25.1 innings. Over that span, he’s struck out 32 batters with five walks. If he keeps pitching like this in July, he could help the big league club again in short order.

12. Mitch Keller, RHP, Pirates (AAA) (ETA: July)

Keller’s most recent start at the Triple-A level was a dud. He allowed six earned runs on nine hits over 5.2 innings. The good news is that it was an anomaly and he’s been very good at the Triple-A all season long. Keller should get another long look in the second half of the year.

13. Gavin Lux, SS, Dodgers (AAA) (ETA: August)

Lux has hits in nine of his last 10 games and earned himself a promotion to Triple-A. The new level hasn’t been much of a challenge; he’s hitting .500 with seven of his 15 hits going for extra bases over his first seven games. Lux and Will Smith give the Dodgers some real offensive insurance down the stretch and lessen the need to acquire some veteran insurance.

14. Junior Fernandez, Cardinals (AAA) (ETA: August)

Alex Reyes and Carlos Martinez have had mixed results this year so why not give a shot to another hard-thrower to see if you can catch lightning in a bottle? Fernandez has finally settled into a relief role and is thriving. He has 61 strikeouts over 48.2 innings thrown at three different levels. Opponents are hitting .174 against him and he has yet to allow a home run this season.

15. Dustin May, RHP, Dodgers (AAA) (ETA: August)

May didn’t pitch this past week after heading to the MLB Futures Game. The Dodgers have an excellent starting rotation but the hurlers could use a rest in the second half to prepare for the playoffs. May is a great option to soak up innings in the second half if he throws well at Triple-A over the next few weeks.

16. Jorge Mateo, SS, Athletics (AAA) (ETA: August)

Mateo is hitting .196 over his past 10 games but he’s recently shown signs of breaking out of his slump. He’s 5-for-15 over his past three games. Overall, his OPS is still a healthy .875. The A’s don’t have an outfielder with an OPS above .782. Mateo’s 18 steals would lead the team by eight. He’s volatile, but the young outfielder could also provide a much-needed spark.

17. Deivi Garcia, RHP, Yankees (AAA) (ETA: August)

Garcia only recently jumped onto the list but he’s also suddenly one of the biggest movers now that he’s been promoted to Triple-A. He wrapped up his time in Double-A with 81 strikeouts and just 36 hits allowed in 51 innings. Garcia was also a participant in the MLB Futures Game.

18. Andres Munoz, RHP, Padres (AAA) (ETA: August)

If the Padres get an offer for closer Kirby Yates that is too good to ignore, he could be on his way out of town even with the team in a wildcard hunt. The closer-in-waiting could be Munoz. The hard-throwing right-hander from Mexico is just 20 years old but he’s throwing triple digits in Triple-A. He’s been roughed up a little bit recently due to some shoddy defense but he has 32 strikeouts in 15.2 innings at the highest level of the minors. When hitters aren’t swinging through his heat, they’re pounding it into the ground.

19. Willi Castro, SS, Tigers (AAA) (ETA: August)

Aside from Harold Castro’s empty .294 batting average, the Tigers’ middle infielders are struggling. There is little-to-nothing to rebuild around on the MLB roster so it’s time to let the kids play. Castro hit a rough patch in June but he’s hitting .289 over his last 10 games. He’s hitting .296 on the year and could add some much-needed speed and athleticism to the lineup.

20. Jake Fraley, OF, Mariners (AAA) (ETA: August)

Fraley hasn’t let the promotion to Triple-A slow him down. He’s hitting .326 over his past 10 games and has gone deep three times in the last four games. If you combined his stats between Double-A and Triple-A, he has a shot at being a 20-20 player (while also hitting .300) this season. Fraley was seen as a bit of a throw-in to last season’s trade between Tampa Bay and Seattle but he may end up being the best player in the deal.

 

Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (21-30)

21. Justin Dunn, RHP, Mariners (AA) (ETA: August)

Dunn was another participant in the MLB Futures Game but he also had a rough outing at Double-A on July 2 before heading off to the festivities. He allowed five runs on eight hits and two walks over five innings. Still, he has 96 strikeouts in 75.1 innings and has a chance to impact the big league rotation in the second half once the Mets start looking towards 2020.

22. Ryan Mountcastle, 1B/3B, Orioles (AAA) (ETA: August)

With the trade deadline coming fast, teams have been sniffing around Trey Mancini. If the Orioles get a deal they can’t refuse, then Mountcastle could be well-positioned to replace him. His torrid pace from June has slowed down recently but he’s holding his own recently and has actually cut down on this swing-and-miss tendencies with just seven strikeouts over the last 10 games.

23. A.J. Puk, LHP, Athletics (AA) (ETA: August)

The A’s were probably hoping Jesus Luzardo and Puk would provide much-needed help in the second half of the season but the former is now injured again and the latter has been slow to reacclimatize himself to pro ball after a long layoff. He’s currently working just one-inning outings at Double-A, possibly with the hope of having him help in the bullpen later this year if the team remains in the playoff hunt.

24. Alex Kirilloff, OF, Twins (AA) (ETA: August)

Perhaps third time’s a charm? The outfield prospect jumps back onto the list for a third time after struggling with injuries earlier in the season. He’s finally gotten into the groove we were expecting and he’s hitting .385 with two home runs over his past 10 games. He also has a very encouraging BB-K of 5-6. The Twins have a very good offensive team so it won’t be easy to find a spot of Kirilloff but he’s great insurance against an injury.

25. Brandon Bielak, RHP, Astros (AAA) (ETA: August)

Bielak is getting hot at Triple-A. He had a rough start to the level but recently threw six innings of one-run ball while also striking out eight. Over his past four starts, he’s allowed just five runs in 25 innings with 22 strikeouts. If he can show consistent control, Bielak could get a shot in the second half — especially if the Astros cannot shore up their pitching depth before the trade deadline.

26. Kean Wong, 2B/OF, Rays (AAA) (ETA: August)

Wong continues to hit well at Triple-A and recently recorded his 100th hit on the season. He has an OPS of .910 and continues to play all over the field. He’s hitting .293 with five walks over the past 10 games. The Rays organization is stacked with prospects of a similar profile but Wong deserves a chance to prove himself at the MLB level.

27. Nick Madrigal, 2B, White Sox (AA) (ETA: August)

The Sox probably have nothing to play for but the organization could infuse some additional excitement into the MLB lineup with the promotions of Luis Robert and Madrigal - both of whom would still be controllable for more than six seasons at this point. They’re very different players but they’re both having a lot of success. The young second base is hitting .392 at Double-A and has just two strikeouts in 25 games. On the season, he’s struck out just eight times in 74 games. That’s not a typo. Madrigal has also stolen 28 bases on the year.

28. Michel Baez, RHP, Padres (AA) (ETA: August)

Like Andres Munos above, Baez can throw massive heat and could help solidify the Padres’ bullpen in the second half of the season. His command and control both still need work but he can overpower hitters even when he’s not at his best. He’s allowed five walks in this last three outings but just one hit in the five innings. Overall, he’s only walked 11 batters in 21.1 innings in a season that didn’t start until late May.

29. Nick Gordon, SS, Twins (AAA) (ETA: August)

Like Alex Kirilloff above, Gordon faces a tough task breaking into a strong lineup (especially with Luis Arraez playing well) but he looks MLB ready. Slowed by injuries early on, Gordon is hitting .317 with a BB-K of 5-7 over his past 10 games. He’s now hitting .290 on the season and is showing increased gap power with 21 of his 60 hits going for doubles.

30. Monte Harrison, OF, Marlins (AAA) (ETA: August)

Harrison was slated to participate in the MLB Futures Game but a wrist injury shelved those hopes and it remains to be seen how long he’ll be out. The Marlins are downplaying the injury but he’s scheduled to meet with a hand specialist. If he only misses a few weeks, Harrison’s power-speed combination could play nicely for the Marlins in the final two months of the season.

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