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Top 30 Prospects for 2020 Dynasty Leagues (Off-season)


With the 2019 MiLB season in the books, it’s time to look forward to 2020 and beyond. Today’s list kicks off our off-season look at both the top prospects for 2020 (coming soon) but also the Top 30 overall prospects in fantasy baseball — for all your dynasty league needs.

The 2019 season was an interesting one. It saw quite a few top prospects make their MLB debuts as organizations relied more heavily on their own systems to feed their big league clubs. Ten years ago, we would have seen a lot of tops prospects spend the majority of their season at one level, with only a handful receiving mid-season promotions. Now it’s not uncommon for a prospect to move every couple of months with many seeing three levels in a season. And adding the MLB baseball to the Triple-A landscape provided yet another wrinkle to a fascinating season.

The Detroit Tigers, Tampa Bay Rays, and Chicago White Sox are well represented on the list with three players apiece, while a couple others are featured twice.

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MLB Dynasty Prospect Rankings (1-10)

1. Wander Franco, SS, Rays (ETA: 2020)

Franco is looking like Fernando Tatis Jr. 2.0. And he’ll be entering a favorable hitting environment with an exciting, young Rays lineup that includes the likes of Austin Meadows, Brandon Lowe, and Nathaniel Lowe. Franco should open 2020 in Double-A after posting an .872 in 52 High-A games. The power isn’t as advanced as Tatis Jr.’s was at the same age but Franco is a much more advanced hitter (56-35 BB-K rate in 114 games in 2019) and the manpower will come — especially once he starts hitting more balls in the air and gets into an environment with the “enhanced” baseballs.

2. MacKenzie Gore, LHP, Padres (ETA: 2021)

Gore is on the fringe of arriving in 2020 rather than 2021 but we’ll play it safe for now — especially since he should be limited to 140-160 innings in the coming year after posting 101 in 2019. This 20-year-old southpaw is the most talented pitcher in the minors and has the ceiling of a true top-of-the-rotation starter with above-average control and the potential for four above-average offerings. He posted a video-game-like ERA of 1.09 in 15 High-A ball games before being promoted to Double-A for an additional five games where he also held his own.

3. Luis Robert, OF, White Sox (ETA: 2020)

Robert played at three levels in 2019 and ended the year in Triple-A. His overall line included 32 home runs, 36 steals, and a .328 batting average. Robert has outstanding bat speed and otherworldly power potential. But he’s also an aggressive hitter who could struggle a bit as he acclimatizes to the Major Leagues. If he does look a little overmatched early on, be patient. There is 30 home run potential here.

4. Gavin Lux, SS, Dodgers (ETA: 2020)

Few prospects moved up the rankings as much as Lux in 2019. He had an outstanding half-season in Double-A before laying waste to Triple-A in the second half. The young infielder has gotten stronger each pro season and, over the past three years, has seen his home-run output rise from seven in 2017 to 15 and then to 28 in 2019. Despite the power increase, Lux has continued to hit well (.347 average in the minors this year) and get on base (.421 on-base percentage).

5. Nate Pearson, RHP, Blue Jays (ETA: 2020)

Pearson is only beginning to get the attention he deserves after missing all of 2018 with injuries. The hulking hurler can dial his heater up to 100 mph but is often more effective in the 96-98 mph range with increased movement. He pitched at three levels in 2019 while topping out at Triple-A. He held hitters to a .176 batting average and produced a K-BB of 119-27 in 101.2 innings. The power/control combo is rare and Pearson flashes three above-average offerings.

6. Jo Adell, OF, Angels (ETA: 2020)

Adell’s season was negatively impacted by injury and a late-season swoon but, make no mistake about it, he has the ingredients necessary to be a top hitter. The Angels prospect combines above-average athleticism with skill and incredibly makeup, which will help him squeeze every ounce of talent out of his body. He showed flashes of his developing power potential with 40 of his 88 hits going for extra bases.

7. Casey Mize, RHP, Tigers (ETA: 2020)

Mize’s stuff is a tad less electric than Pearson’s but he’s really not far behind in terms of future ceiling — if he can avoid injuries after previously dealing with both forearm and shoulder injuries. He still threw 109.1 innings in 2019 — mostly in Double-A — and produced an excellent K-BB of 106-23.

8. Kyle Tucker, OF, Astros (ETA: 2020)

Tucker could fall off this list by the end of the year if he gets another 17 at-bats this week and loses his rookie eligibility. The young outfielder’s batting average took a hit this year dropping from .332 to .266 despite repeating Triple-A. However, he still posted his third straight season with at least 20 home runs and 20 steals. In fact, he had a 30-30 season and this kind of power-speed combination is rare.

9. Brendan McKay, LHP/1B, Rays (ETA: 2020)

McKay is another player who could fall off this list as he needs just 3.1 innings to no longer qualify as a rookie for 2020. The lefty dominated both Double-A and Triple-A but has struggled with his command at times in the Majors. He has struck out 53 batters and shown good control with just 15 walks in 46.2 innings but he has allowed too many hittable offerings at times resulting in 51 base knocks. When everything is clicking, he shows four average-or-better offerings.

10. Jarred Kelenic, OF, Mariners (ETA: 2021)

The sixth overall pick in the 2018 draft out of high school, Kelenic blew through the lower minors and reached Double-A near the end of the year. In total, he hit more than .290 and produced a 20-20 (HR-SB) season. He also showed excellent patience with 50 walks and has added value in fantasy leagues that reward walks. Kelenic is another player with an intriguing mix of power and speed.

 

MLB Dynasty Prospect Rankings (11-20)

11. Jesus Luzardo, LHP, Athletics (ETA: 2020)

A serious shoulder injury at the beginning of the year threatened to derail Luzardo’s season. However, he made it back in time to show his advanced pitching approach, which earned him a late-season promotion to the Majors where he’s been a contributor to the A’s playoff race. He’s posted a K-BB of 8-3 in seven innings out of the bullpen. His shoulder issue deserves monitoring moving forward.

12. Matt Manning, RHP, Tigers (ETA: 2020)

Manning is just 21 years old but he’s already built like a workhorse. He held Double-A hitters to a .192 average while striking out 148 batters in 133.2 innings. He also showed excellent control with just 38 walks allowed. An improved third offering to go with his plus fastball-curveball combo could catapult him into a top-of-the-rotation stud.

13. Carter Kieboom, SS, Nationals (ETA: 2020)

Kieboom was unprepared for his brief MLB trial in 2019 but he hit very well in Triple-A at the age of 22. He has a chance to be a middle infielder with a good batting average, excellent on-base numbers and enough raw power to eventually hit 20-25 home runs. His ability to play multiple infield positions increases his fantasy value.

14. Andrew Vaughn, 1B, White Sox (ETA: 2021)

Vaughn was the third-overall selection in the 2019 draft but his numbers don’t look anything special because he was curiously pushed aggressively through the minors. He played at three levels and topped out in High-A ball, which should be his landing spot at the beginning of 2020. Vaughn is a special hitter, who should produce both average and power — as well as excellent on-base numbers.

15. Julio Rodriguez, OF, Mariners (ETA: 2021)

As if Jarred Kelenic wasn’t enough, the Mariners have another high-ceiling outfielder who could be poised for an even bigger breakout in 2020. Just 18, Rodriguez hit well in Low-A and earned a late-season promotion to High-A ball where he hit .462 in 17 games. The downside to Rodriguez’s game is that he’s a little too overaggressive at times but he has plus raw power.

16. Riley Greene, OF, Tigers (ETA: 2022)

Another 2019 first-round selection, Greene is an advanced hitter who was playing high school ball six months ago. He should hit for both average and power. He’ll likely open 2020 in Low-A ball but could be a fast riser like Jarred Kelenic.

17. Alec Bohm, 3B, Phillies (ETA: 2020)

The third overall selection in the 2018 draft, Bohm played at three levels in his first full season of pro ball and reached Double-A. Overall, he hit for average, power and showed a solid approach at the plate with a BB-K of 57-73.

18.  Matthew Liberatore, LHP, Rays (ETA: 2021)

Liberatore, who is just 19 but stands 6-5, was treated with kid gloves in 2019 but he could be poised for a huge breakout season in 2020 — especially if he taps into a little more velocity and/or sees improved control. Pitching in Rookie ball, he struck out 76 batters with 36 walks in 78.1 innings.

19. Grayson Rodriguez, RHP, Orioles (ETA: 2022)

Rodriguez could be poised to be one of the top breakout pitchers of 2020. His control comes and goes but he has a workhorse build and three pitches with the potential to be above-average offerings in the Majors. His fastball works in the upper 90s and he struck out 129 batters in just 94 innings in 2019.

20. Alex Kirilloff, OF, Twins (ETA: 2020)

Kirilloff’s season was muted by injuries but started to really heat up in the second half of the year — and especially in August. He’s just one year removed from hitting .348. Kirilloff should hit for a good average in the Majors and is capable of producing 20 or more home runs.

 

MLB Dynasty Prospect Rankings (21-30)

21. Cristian Pache, OF, Braves (ETA: 2020)

Pache needs to be less aggressive but he more than held his own as a 20-year-old outfielder playing in both Double-A and Triple-A. He’s still gaining strength but he should eventually hit for both power and average.

22. Brusdar Graterol, RHP, Twins (ETA: 2020)

Graterol is another player that was bitten by the injury bug in 2019 but he made it back from a shoulder injury to make his MLB debut out of the bullpen in September. The 21-year-old hurler will returning to starting in 2020 and shows the ability to both miss bats and induce a high number of ground balls.

23. J.J. Bleday, OF, Marlins (ETA: 2022)

Like Andrew Vaughn, Bleday was a top draft pick out of the college ranks who got off to a slow start with the bat. With that said, he was challenged with an immediate assignment to High-A ball. The young outfielder will likely return to that level to open up the 2020 season and should produce excellent power.

24. Michael Kopech, RHP, White Sox (ETA: 2020)

Kopech’s season was wiped out by Tommy John surgery but he should be back in April or May of 2020. With the ability to hit triple digits with his heater and miss bats with his slider, this young hurler has a high ceiling if he comes back to full health.

25. Dylan Carlson, OF, Cardinals (ETA: 2020)

Just 20 years old, Carlson had a breakout season in 2019 while playing mostly in Double-A before earning a late-season promotion to Triple-A. He had a 20-20 (HR-SB) season while also showing the ability to hit for average.

26. Adley Rutschman, C, Orioles (ETA: 2022)

The first overall selection in the 2019 draft, Rutschman has more real-life baseball value than fantasy baseball value because defensive skills are irrelevant in the latter format. With that said, he’s expected to be quite skilled with the bat and a good hitting catcher is often hard to find. Rutschman has an inconsistent pro debut so watch his 2020 season closely to see if he starts to match the high expectations on offense.

27. Brendan Rodgers, SS, Rockies (ETA: 2020)

Rodgers had an ugly 2019 season. Sure, he made his MLB debut but was misused by the manager and then got hurt and missed the entire second half of the year. When he was healthy, he showed his potential by hitting .350 in Triple-A. Rodgers also has the potential to hit 20 or more home runs.

28. A.J. Puk, LHP, Athletics (ETA: 2020)

Puk spent the first half of 2019 recovering from Tommy John surgery. When he returned to the mound, he spent the majority of his time in the bullpen and was then promoted to the Majors to help the A’s with the playoff race. He should return to starting in 2020 where he maintains a high ceiling with his ability to miss bats.

29. C.J. Abrams, SS, Padres  (ETA: 2022)

No 2019 draft pick had a better pro debut than the sixth overall selection. Just 18, he dominated Rookie ball by hitting .401 with 14 steals in 32 games. An extremely athletic player with blazing speed, Abrams showed more pop than expected and even earned a promotion to full-season A-ball before getting hurt.

30. Bobby Witt Jr., SS, Royals (ETA: 2023)

Witt Jr. was the second overall selection in 2019 and he held his own in Rookie ball as a 19-year-old. He hit just one home run in 37 games but he has good, raw power and should hit 20 or more home runs once he further matures as a hitter and makes more consistent contact.

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