This isn’t a new take, but it’s one that bears repeating; baseball is the only sport where the best starting lineup isn’t on the field all season. The service time game does nobody any favors, actually that’s incorrect, it does huge favors for the owners of the biggest market clubs. It hurts the fans, it hurts the players, it hurts the small market teams, and most of all, it hurts the product on the field. The most glaring example at present is the peculiar case of Amed Rosario. The Mets’ farmhand has been smoking hot all season long, slashing .363/.400/.536 for AAA Las Vegas, while chipping in with 4 homers and 9 steals.
Just to compare and contrast, as of May 25th the Mets have gotten a .225/.307/.345 slashline from the shortstop position. I might be going out on a limb here, but that’s not good. The production from the hot corner for the Mess hasn’t been much better, as they’ve gotten a .240/.302/.374 line from the 3rd base position. It’s pop quiz time, hot shots! What do you think, could Amed Rosario possibly help the Mets? There’s only one answer, and it rhymes with mess. To add salt to the wounds of Mets fans (sorry 1 F), and Rosario owners alike, the shortstop prospect extended his hit streak to 11 games last night. The most remarkable part of that streak isn’t the 11 games, but the fact that 8 of those games have been multi-hit efforts. So not only is Rosario hitting in every game the last two weeks, he’s pretty much collecting multiple hits in each contest.
Admittedly, I’m not the biggest Rosario fan in the fantasy community, but that’s also not to say I don’t like Rosario, because I do. He has an excellent hit tool, never strikes out, and his glove will keep him in the lineup. My questions about Rosario lie in just how much pop is in his bat, and just how many steals are in those legs. There’s certainly pop, and there’s certainly speed, but just how much he possesses will determine his ultimate value. Don’t get me wrong Crabs, haters, and countrymen, I’m not saying a high batting average and lots of counting stats won’t be helpful, they will. What I am saying, if Rosario can get to 15 homers and 20 steals in a single season, we could be talking about a superstar. Now, will he reach those numbers this year? Hell to the no, but 8 homers and 12 steals the rest of the way wouldn’t be absurd. If you’re wondering just how soon Rosario will be called up, my best guess is any day now. It could honestly be any time between today and mid-June. The Mets have had him take some reps at 3rd as of late too, so they’re looking at different ways of getting him into the lineup. Well, at least I think they want him in the lineup. After all, it’s The Mess. Here’s who else is making noise in the MiLB.
- The King in the North Tyler O’Neill has awoken from his early season thunder to smite his enemies with his whooping stick. Not really, to be honest as he connected for his first homer in a month yesterday for Tacoma. He has hit .280 over the last three weeks, and seems like he’s primed to go on a tear. When it’s comes to prospects it’s easy to get caught up in early season production. I’m here to tell you not to panic, and sell O’Neill low.
- Reds pitching prospect Tony Santillan has been en fuego through his last 3 starts. The righty has gone 18.2 innings and accrued an ERA of .93, batting average against of .129, a whip of 0.43, a K/9 of 10.61, and a Bb/9 of, get this, 0.00. That’s right, in his last three starts Santillan has struck out 22 batters, allowed 8 total hits, and walked no one. His high 90’s fastball, that touches 99, and plus slider have earned him the dreaded pen risk label, but the step forward with control so far in 2017 bodes well for his future in the rotation. With prototypical size and stuff, Santillan is a worthy buy in all dynasty formats.
- Speaking of buys in dynasty formats; have you added Jon Duplantier yet? Well if you haven’t you should right now. The Diamondbacks prospect has been amazing this season, he ran his scoreless streak to 17 innings last night. As he went 6 strong, allowing just 3 hits, no walks, and striking out just 2. If you’re at all alarmed by that last number, don’t be. Why? Because prior to last night’s game Duplantier has averaged a boner inducing 11.48 K/9 in his first 7 starts. There’s some injury history here, dating back to his time at Rice, but he’s a worthy gamble with high octane stuff and pedigree. If Duplantier is on your waiver wire and you’re looking for an off the radar pitching prospect, give the Dup a look.
- Braves super prospect Ronald Acuna continued his assault on AA pitching last night, connecting for a long homer in Mississppi’s win over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos. Just 15 games into his AA career, and the 19 year old Acuna is slashing .364/.446/.618 with 3 homers, and 9 steals. I wrote up a Ronald Acuna Fantasy a few weeks back. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that Acuna is the highest ceiling player in the minors. BOLD STATEMENT!
- Speaking of the Mississippi Braves, and it seems like we talk about them every single week. Starter Mike Soroka went 5 2/3rds last night allowing 1 run, on 3 hits, and 2 walks, while striking out 10 in the process. On the season the righty is 5-3 with a 2.96 ERA and 51 strikeouts in 48.2 innings.
- Sometimes a change of scenery is all you need. That seems to be the case with Yankees righty Domingo Acevedo, who’s yet to allow a run in his two starts since joining AA Trenton. The 6’7 righty can touch 100 with the heat, and there’s some debate as to what his best secondary is, his slider or his change. There’s tons of relief talk with Acevedo, with some, Fangraphs Eric Longenhagen chief among them, that are bullish on Acevdeo’s future in the pen.
- Another day, another Minor League Update where Rhys Hoskins is doing something great, as he went 3 for 3 with 4 runs scored and connected for his 13th homer of the year last night. I’m sorry but Tommy Joseph has started to suck again the last week, there’s no way Hoskins isn’t the everyday first baseman in Philly by August 1st. Don’t worry he’ll be up a month plus before that.
- For the second consecutive game and third time in the last week, the Yankees Clint Frazier connected for a homer. Despite the recent power surge for the Ginger Hammer his underlying stats haven’t been great. He’s striking out a ton, and hitting for a low average. Regardless of Jacoby Ellsbury’s injury I don’t see Frazier coming up until he figures out some of his swing and miss issues
- Now back in the minors, Raimel Tapia extended his dormant hit streak to 17 games, and his on base streak to 26. If Tapia can add some approach this season, he could be a monster in the steals, average, and runs department once he finds a full-time gig in Denver. I pray Tapia isn’t traded in the next two months, as he’s the perfect profile for Coors.
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