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The fantasy baseball world waits impatiently for the arrivals of Anthony Rizzo and Wil Myers.  Some owners have been stashing one or the other on their rosters for months now, as folks like me keep spewing lines like “arrival is imminent” — whatever that means.  Truth is, these call-ups are utterly unpredictable.  They’re based more on opportunity than readiness, and “opportunity”, it seems, is defined differently by every GM in baseball.  Both Jed Hoyer and Dayton Moore are claiming patient approaches with their prospects, hinting that we won’t see either player in the majors this year.  But who can believe these guys?  Rizzo and Myers have combined for 55 homers on the season, and I’d love to see them join Trout and Harper in MLB’s 2012 prospect party.  When that might happen, though, is tough to gauge.  Until then, arrival is imminent.

Danny Hultzen | LHP, Mariners — Hultzen’s been Minor League Baseball’s most dominant pitcher over the past month, and at this point, the above blurb suffices for him too.  You can also include Trevor Bauer in that group.

Matt Barnes | RHP, Red Sox – Barnes has responded well to his promotion to High-A,  posting a 1.37 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP, while whiffing 10.4 per 9.  It should be noted that Baseball America is calling his fastball “Verlander-esque.”

Miles Head | 3B, Athletics — Through his last 10, Head is hitting .462/.512/.974 with 6 homers at Double-A Stockton.  Potential fantasy asset in a year or two as slugging CI.

A.J. Griffin | RHP, Athletics — Griffin has thrown back-to-back complete games at Triple-A Sacramento.  One of the games was official after seven innings, but still.  He’s been wonderfully efficient in what’s been a breakout 2012 for the 24-year-old.  Griffin is certainly a call-up candidate for the second half.

Marcell Ozuna | OF, Marlins — Ozuna is known as a streaky hitter and he’s been reinforcing that perception recently.  In a two-game stretch earlier this week, the High-A outfielder blasted five homers and collected 12 RBI.

Trayce Thompson | OF, White Sox — Thompson’s power stroke is heating up as he’s collected 7 XBH (3 HR) through his last 38 PA at High-A.  The White Sox system is pretty ugly, but with his tremendous power-potential, Thompson is an exception.

Gerrit Cole | RHP, Pirates — Last year’s top overall pick has been promoted to Double-A.  The 21-year-old out of UCLA posted solid numbers across the board at High-A, but nothing awe-inspiring in particular.  Still, Cole projects like a true ace and he’s now entered the realm of the high minor leagues.

Taijuan Walker | RHP, Mariners — Walker is perhaps my favorite pitching prospect in the minors, but he’s been knocked around recently, allowing 13 ER through his last 13 IP at Double-A Jackson.  He’s just 19-years-old, so the struggles aren’t necessarily a surprise.  Walker projects as a fantasy superstar pitching out of Safeco.

From Around The Web

  1. Barry says:
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    Hi Grey – Love reading your column especially on minor league players. I am in the finishing phase of building a keeper league dynasty and next year, I should have the 1st pick of the draft.

    If you were me, would you take Barnes or Walker as the 1st pick of the draft?

    We get to keep 22 guys in this salary cap league and here are the guys that I have locked up for the long-term: Mesoraco, Goldschmidt, Ackley, HanRam, Middlebrooks, Chisenhall, Josh Hamilton, Austin Jackson, Ethier, Brett Jackson, Wil Myers, Nick Franklin, Jurickson Profar, Billy Hamilton, Gerrit Cole, Jameson Taillon, Julio Teheran, Tyler Skaggs, Adam Wainwright, Ian Kennedy and CC Sabathia.

    The final keeper spot are between VMart, Wilson Ramos, Mariano Rivera, Lucas Duda, Andrelton Simmons (in case HanRam is not SS-eligible and Franklin is not in Seattle at the beginning of the year next year), Max Scherzer and Josh Beckett.

    Starting slots are: C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, IF, LF, CF, RF, OF and three SP slots and five RP slots. The weekly minimum innings requirement is 30 innings. I have chosen to not roster any relief pitchers this year so that I can hopefully lock up the opportunity to get Barnes or Walker while analyzing who will be my 22 keepers.

    If you had this team, then what would you do in terms of 22 keepers?

    Myers is still catcher-eligible (this is a Yahoo league) and I am using him as a potential hedge for 2013 as my starting catcher until Mesoraco gets regular playing time. I’ll be interested in your or anyone else’s thoughts. I am pretty jacked up about this team in 2013 and beyond.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @Barry, First: draft taijuan walker over barnes. and that’s not all that close by my estimation.

      Re: your last keep: I like the idea of keeping scherzer. Outstanding stuff, and projects to become a closer if starting games doesn’t work out long term.

      Agree w/ your excitement over this team’s potential. Great core of high ceiling prospects.

  2. Barry says:
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    Hi Scott – I have seen comparisons of Walker to Dwight Gooden so it is fair to see why Walker would be the guy. With that said, I will be interested to see how Barnes does in AA ball.

    Regarding the last keeper – it will be tough to not keep Scherzer. He has been on my roster since I assumed this team. As long as I have a starting catcher and shortstop between Mesoraco, Myers, Franklin, HanRam, then it is a no-brainer and as long as Teheran becomes my 4th/5th starter next year.

    I may drop or trade Chisenhall if he cannot show that he is a starting 3B in the bigs. That is a consideration I may make since I have HanRam and Middlebrooks taking the 3B and IF slots. The other consideration is between Jackson and Duda in case Jackson struggles in the bigs as well considering his ability to be very streaky in AAA this year and his high K rate.

    What I do know is that when it comes to the guys that I have who are in the minors: Profar, Cole, Taillon, Skaggs, Teheran, Billy Hamilton, Myers, and Franklin are absolute keepers for reasons that are obvious.

    Chisenhall and Jackson are guys that I am watching with particular interest because they assume two roster spots that I could use in other ways like with a Max Scherzer and say VMart for next year if he is also catcher-eligible….

    • chata says:
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      @Barry,

      can billy hamilton be more than a year behind profar ?
      who knows about maturity , at this stage of their development , but
      i’m thinking hamilton has the easier path .
      thoughts ?

      • Barry says:
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        @chata, The thing that I love about Hamilton is that in a weekly head-to-head dynasty league, he is going to be give me a very big advantage in steals and is either going to be a CF, SS, or possibly a 2B.

        I expect Profar to be my long-term solution at SS and he is already in AA. It will be interesting how the Rangers handle Andrus since he is a FA in 2015 on a team whose payroll has leaped significantly over the last couple of years.

        Additionally, Billy Hamilton plays in Cincinnati where Dusty Baker loves his veterans. I think that Hamilton will likely become a CF or a 2B and if that is the case then Dustin Ackley becomes valuable trade bait.

        Either way, I like each of their development and if Billy Hamilton produces in AA like he has in A + ball, then he should be in the bigs by 2014 because I know that Profar will be in the bigs by 2014.

  3. TheNewGuy says:
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    Hi Scott thanks for the response on the other thread.

    Did Hoyer and Moore really say that then? If so is there a chance we don’t see them this season , or is it a common thing for GMs to say without really meaning it.

    After all I don’t see what the Cubs have to lose, they can try LaHair on tge OF to allow Rizzo to be called up. And if the Royals can move Frenchy or find another space, then Myers time should be soon, surely they wanna see what he can do.

    Seems there are just as many good prospects awaiting the call as last year, but much less opportunities! Would be a dull summer if we dont see any of these kids (Bauer/Hultz too) until September.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @TheNewGuy, Hoyer & Moore have been hinting at it all year… Moore recently reiterated the thought. But like I say, who can believe these guys? Transparency isn’t always in the best interest of these clubs & their executives. I’m thinking we’ll see both of these guys up this year.

  4. JG_ism says:
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    ETA on Hultzen, very soon?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @JG_ism, Your guess is as good as mine at this point — kind of the theme of this post, really… He’s ready, but how the M’s choose to bring him up remains a mystery. Very tough to gauge these ETA’s when it’s this close. Opportunity needs to be there.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @JG_ism, If I must guess, then yes, soonish. Soon enough to stash, at least. Grey’s buy or sell from this past Friday has some thoughts on the situation too.

  5. JG_ism says:
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    gonna bid tonight. believe i just lost beachy, got a bad feeling. hopefully hultz comes soon..thanks

  6. Nick says:
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    Bauer or Latos, keeper league? Thanks!

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @Nick, Probably Latos, but if Bauer comes up & pitches well, you need to consider him… tough call.

  7. Schwartz's Smoaked Meat says:
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    Thanks again for mining the prospects for us. I have been playing in a 16 team mixed H2H CBS standard scoring league for 6 years and had a plan. If you can win more than once in 16 years, you are ahead of the game so why try to win right away. I have been working on a dynasty team that wins year after year. I am in first this year but have already made trades to fine tune. I love tinkering
    with my team. I can keep 12.
    Highlights
    Hosmer Rizzo
    Ackley
    Lowrie
    Longoria Moustakas Alvarez
    Santana Flores
    Harper Stanton Morisson Kubel Myers
    Kershaw F. Hernandez Beachy Lester Chapman
    I see alvarez kubel flores and all pitchers not named kershaw as my cuts for 12. Of what remains, who would you go after with all of the good parts I have to upgrade this fountain of youth. I actually traded Goldschmidt and Hanley for Longoria and some pitching short term because I think Longoria if healthy is the premier 3b for the net decade. If you could work this roster, what would you do?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @Schwartz’s Smoaked Meat, I like Chapman in a deep keeper like this… you don’t think so?

      • Schwartz's Smoaked Meat says:
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        @Scott Evans,
        ya – Chapman is likely the 12 dollar salad closer worth keeping until the rails come off his 101mph
        if I keep 2 pitchers in a format like this I am keeping 10 of my 11 starting hitting spots
        If I do that, I keep Moose Longo Lowrie Ackely rizzo hosmer santana stanton harper Myers kershaw Chapman and trading the following for picks or an upgrade on one of the bodies here.
        Pedro Alvarez, Logan Morisson, Flores King Felix, Lester, bachy (unless his arm is dead)
        But which of these anchors on a budding dynasty would you try and upgrade?

  8. Prezii says:
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    Good work as always! Love the updates every week.. this time of year is like baseballs christmas… I want my presents!!

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      @Prezii, Thanks for reading!

  9. TheNewGuy says:
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    Hultzy up to AAA, is that good or bad news in terms of ETA? From the point of view of him as a keeper though im glad, this will make sure he’s fully ready when he gets the call.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      It’s predictable news, I think… Still see him being called 2nd week of July…

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