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Top 30 Impact Prospects for Redraft Leagues (Week 17)


It could be a busy week ahead with the traded deadline only seven days away on July 31. The impending trade deadline could very well have serious implications for many of the prospects discussed below. A few of them could even be on the move to new organizations.

The Padres front office has been frenetically remaking the big league roster lately and promoted three prospects, including middle infielder Luis Urias, who is back up after a strong performance at Triple-A. The club also brought up two of its upper-level stud arms in Michel Baez and Adrian Morejon. Baez was a member of the last week’s list but Morejon was not as he was pitching in Double-A. Both pitchers may be getting an audition as the trade deadline approaches, or the Padres simply see themselves as being on the playoff fringes and would prefer to try and gain an edge from the minor league system rather than shedding talent to acquire short-term, veteran acquisitions.

The Indians recently recalled pitcher Zach Plesac and sent down fellow prospect Bobby Bradley, who showed some power but struggled to make consistent contact and struck out more than 40% of the time. *Brendan McKay was again optioned to Triple-A by the Rays after his most recent MLB start but this is considered a procedural move as the organization manages his innings throughout the second half so he was kept off the list again.

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Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (1-10)

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

The inevitable finally happened with Tyler White receiving his walking papers after a rough season. However, this may not have a direct impact on Tucker, as hoped. The club will fill the vacant roster spot with a pitcher for now and then the Astros will have shortstop Carlos Correa returning from the IL in about a week’s time. Rookie Yordan Alvarez made White expendable and players like Tony Kemp and Myles Straw give the roster flexibility with their abilities to play multiple positions. Tucker continues to be mired in a July slump and is hitting .216 with 10 strikeouts over his past 10 games. On the plus side, he’s still getting on base and has eight walks over that same period.

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

Bichette continues to look MLB ready with another solid week at Triple-A. He had a two-homer game on July 17 and is making good contact with just five strikeouts in his last 40 at-bats. The young shortstop’s promotion could hinge on the club’s ability to find a reasonable trade for veteran infielder Freddy Galvis — who has been one of Toronto’s best hitters and also has a reasonable option for 2020 — but wouldn’t be happy sitting on the bench. Veteran second baseman Eric Sogard is in a similar situation (minus the contract option). We’ll likely see one, if not both, on the move over the next week with Bichette’s promotion coming minutes later.

3. Will Smith, C, Dodgers (AAA) (ETA: August)

Smith continues to hit for power (five homers in seven games) but he took a pitch off his bare hand while catching and has been in and out of the lineup since then. The Dodgers also recently promoted another top catching prospect, Keibert Ruiz, to Triple-A — perhaps in an effort to showcase him for a potential deadline deal. If Smith’s hand is OK, he should soon earn another return trip to The Show.

4. Isan Diaz, 2B, Marlins (AAA) (ETA: August)

Diaz could be packing his bags for the Majors this time next week if the Marlins can find someone willing to take Starlin Castro off their hands. He’s obliterated Triple-A pitching recently with a .386 average and four home runs over his past 10 games. Overall, he has 24 homers, 44 walks and a .305 average in 92 games.

5. Carter Kieboom, SS, Nationals (AAA) (ETA: August)

Kieboom has had his ups-and-downs along the way this season but he’s sitting on a .968 OPS through 77 Triple-A games at the age of 21. He’s hit for power, average and also taken more than his fair share of walks. And his batting average is at .314. If the Nationals can find semi-regular playing time for him in the infield, he just might help the big league club push for that wild card spot.

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

It wouldn’t be surprising to see Fernandez dealt in a trade deadline deal but, if he stays put, he could also help out the Cardinals. He’s only allowed one earned run in nine Triple-A games while striking out 16 batters (with just three walks) in 13.1 innings. He has an upper-90s fastball and a good changeup.

7. Mitch Keller, RHP, Pirates (AAA) (ETA: August)

The Pirates are only six games out of the playoffs but they have a ton of teams ahead of them and are 2-8 in their last 10 games. Bring on the kids! Keller’s inconsistencies can be maddening at times but his Triple-A numbers are quite good so he deserves an extended look in the waning months of the 2019 season. He’s allowed just four earned runs over his last three starts and has 18 strikeouts in 17 innings.

8. Kyle Wright, RHP, Braves (AAA) (ETA: August)

Just when it looked like Wright was getting back on the… right track… the Braves yanked him up to the Majors and sent him right back down after another rough outing. He needs some stability if he’s going to find success at the big league level. Other organizations are likely sniffing around hoping the Braves might be willing to part with the promising hurler but it would likely take a big deal to make that happen, even with his recent struggles.

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

No one in baseball is hotter than Lux. Over 17 Triple-A games since his promotion, he’s hitting almost .500 with an OPS of 1.502. He has a whopping 35 hits with 18 extra-base hits, including seven home runs. That’s more than half the home runs he had in 64 Double-A games. Remember when moving up to Triple-A was a challenge for a hitter? What a difference a juiced ball makes. A promotion of Lux would allow the club to give Corey Seager — who missed most of last year with an injury — time to rest up for the playoffs.

10. Jordan Romano, RHP, Blue Jays (AAA) (ETA: August)

Romano remains on the Triple-A injured list for now but is expected to get back into game action within the next week, which could put him in a good place for a recall to the Majors if Ken Giles and/or other members of the Blue Jays bullpen are on the move at the trade deadline.

 

Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (11-20)

11. Bryse Wilson, RHP, Braves (AAA) (ETA: August)

Like Kyle Wright, Wilson has also dealt with a lot of ups-and-downs with three MLB stints and four Triple-A options. Just 21, Wilson has held his own but has also shown he needs to polish his command before he becomes a truly reliable pitcher at the MLB level. Still, he figures to see more MLB innings through August and September unless the Braves manage to bring in veteran pitching reinforcements and/or Wilson is one of the arms dealt.

12. Jon Duplantier, RHP, Diamondbacks (AAA) (ETA: August)

Duplantier was recently activated from the disabled list after missing all of June and a consistent role in the final two months of the season may give him a better chance of staying healthy. Regardless of his role, he could pitch some meaningful innings for the Diamondbacks in the near future.

13. A.J. Puk, LHP, Athletics (AAA) (ETA: August)

Puk has reportedly earned a promotion to Triple despite uneven results at the Double-A level and the A’s are no doubt looking at him as a potential bullpen reinforcement. In six appearances at that level, he’s struck out 13 batters in 8.1 innings but also allowed three walks and nine hits, including two home runs.

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

The Angels remain in that sticky spot of “Do they go for it, or hold off and hope for next year?” If they decide to go for it, Adell could be a welcomed addition to the team with his strong all-around play - both at the plate and on defense. But is there room for him in the lineup… and do the Angels expedite his service time in the hopes of making the playoffs? Adell is hitting .333 in Double-A with eight home runs in 40 games.

15. Luis Robert, OF, White Sox (AAA) (ETA: August) 

Similar to Jo Adell, Robert looks MLB ready and could probably help the big league club. But do the White Sox want to start his service time clock? The young outfielder has blown away pitchers at three levels now and has an OPS of 1.142 through 10 Triple-A games. He also has five home runs and three stolen bases during that stretch. Overall, he has 21 home runs and 32 steals with a .346 batting average in just 85 games.

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

May had his best start on July 17 since being promoted to Triple-A. He struck out eight batters and issued just one walk over 5.1 innings of one-run ball. He has yet to allow a home run in three Triple-A starts, which is no easy task these days. May remains a dark horse candidate to pitching some innings for the Dodgers in August and September to give the veteran staff a breather - but the actions taken (or not taken) during the trade deadline could give a clearer picture of the Dodgers’ plans.

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

Garcia’s control issues popped up in his most recent Triple-A start when he walked four batters and allowed three hits in just three innings of work. Despite lacking his best stuff, he still struck out four batters and now has 10 strikeouts through eight innings at the highest level of the minors.

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

The only middle infielder on the Tigers hitting more than .220 is utility man Harold Castro at .302 in 42 games. Willi Castro, meanwhile, isn’t flashy but he can do a little bit of everything and has been one of the more consistent hitters at Triple-A in 2019. He’s hitting .294 on the season and is 16-for-20 in stolen base attempts.

19. Adbert Alzolay, RHP, Cubs (AAA) (ETA: August)

Alzolay was recently added to the injured list in Triple-A after three poor outings in Triple-A. The good news is that he’s not expected to miss significant time with what has been diagnosed as biceps soreness - and no structural issues. After throwing more than 110 innings in each of 2016 and ’17, Alzolay has managed just 39.2 innings in ’18 and 59 innings so far this year.

20. Bobby Bradley, 1B, Indians (AAA) (ETA: August)

Bradley’s first taste of MLB action was full of power and strikeouts with six of his eight hits going for extra bases - but also 20 strikeouts in 45 at-bats. It’s been more of the same at Triple-A in recent days with 13 strikeouts in five games.

 

Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings (21-30)

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

Fraley hasn’t played since July 18 due to an unspecified injury. If he can get back into the lineup soon, he could be promoted to the Majors in the final two months of the season - especially if the Mariners trade off some outfielders at the deadline. Fraley has to be added to the 40-man roster at the end of the season anyway and is hitting .300 with 16 home runs and 20 steals in 82 games split between Double-A and Triple-A.

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

Dunn surprisingly remains in Double-A despite a strong season. He went seven shutout innings in his last start and has now struck out six or more batters in five straight starts. Overall, he has a K-BB of 108-26 in 88.1 innings.

23. Nick Solak, 2B/OF, Rangers (AAA) (ETA: August)

Solak appears to have gotten comfortable with his new club and went deep three times over the weekend, which gave him 20 home runs on the year. However, the BB-K of 0-14 over the last 10 games could be causing concern over his ability to succeed at the MLB level right now. If Texas sells at the trade deadline, though, it could open up an opportunity for Solak.

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

Mountcastle is perking up a bit. His season BB-K of 13-92 is still ugly as sin but he’s showing some recent improvements. Over his past six games, he has a BB-K of 1-4. During that stretch, he’s gone 10-for-25 (.400). Trey Mancini remains a dark horse candidate to be traded by the deadline and that moves could open up a shot for Mountcastle, who has to be added to the 40-man roster this winter anyway.

25. Peter Fairbanks, RHP, Rays (AAA) (ETA: August)

Fairbanks was recently acquired by the Rays from the Rangers but will pitch in Triple-A for now. He can throw heat and could be a candidate to help the Rays chase a wild card spot — but it will also depend on who, if anyone, the Rays acquire at the trade deadline and if the young pitcher can find more consistency with his command. He’s looked decent so far since coming over to the Rays with three strikeouts in two innings.

26. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Pirates (AAA) (ETA: August)

Hayes has been a little better lately but it’s been a disappointing season for the young third baseman. He’s hitting .295 with two home runs over his past 10 games but his season OPS sits at .738. Still, the Pirates are likely out of the playoff race so there could be value in looking at him at the MLB level over the final month or two.

27. Austin Hays, OF, Orioles (AAA) (ETA: August)

It’s been another injury-filled, disappointing season for Hays but he’s finally getting regular playing time and looking good, which could result in a promotion to the Majors. Over his past 10 games, the outfielder is hitting .333 with three home runs. The lack of walks continue to be a problem, though, and his BB-K is 2-11 over the recent stretch of games.

28. Sean Reid-Foley, RHP, Blue Jays (AAA) (ETA: August)

Reid-Foley continues to throw poorly in Triple-A but the Jays are already pitching-thin and could be even more so as the trade deadline approaches. He walked just one batter in his last start but also allowed six runs on eight hits in five innings. His results in the Majors have been OK, though, with 12 strikeouts and six walks in 12.2 innings.

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

Gordon continues to perform well in Triple-A but the big league club just doesn’t need another middle infielder right now. That could change at the trade deadline with either Gordon or another middle infielder being used in a deal for pitching depth. He’s hitting .279 with a home run and a couple of steals over the past 10 games.

30. Tanner Houck, RHP, Red Sox (AAA) (ETA: August)

The Red Sox need pitching reinforcements but may lack the prospect depth to acquire much help on the trade front. That could force the club to get creative and consider 2017 first rounder Houck. The young pitcher was recently promoted to Triple-A and has also been transitioned to a relief role after starting 15 games earlier in the year. He has allowed just one hit in four innings at the Triple-A level but also has a BB-K of 3-2.

More MLB Prospects Analysis