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Wednesday again (even if it does feel like Monday for the third day in a row following a short week!), so it’s time for another Panning For Gold – Finding The Prospect Hidden Gems - our weekly look at some of those lesser-known prospects that are beginning to generate the type of buzz that starts their climb up organizational ranking lists, leading to more discussion about them in more well-known circles. Think of these guys as players you may not necessarily have at the top of your lists in shallow keeper leagues, but names you’ll definitely want to keep an eye on as you begin to participate in deeper leagues – the types of player you can wind up scooping up before your mates in your quest to become another fantasy baseball “guru”…respected and adored whenever draft time rolls around (not to mention mumbled about under your opponents’ breath) for years to come.

This week we’re going to shine the light on Jairo Beras, an OF for the Texas Rangers.

 

There was quite a bit of controversy when the Rangers’ signed Dominican Republic native Beras for $4.5 million prior to the new CBA rules that went into effect in July of 2012. Most teams were operating under the assumption that Jairo was 16, meaning he’d fall under the new guidelines that only allowed teams to dole out around a total $2.9 million to international prospect signees. When other teams waited to offer him a contract during the typical international signing period (that usually starts around July 2nd), the Rangers outworked everyone else and found out that he was actually eligible to sign prior to the regular signing period. After an exhaustive investigation, MLB determined that the Rangers were correct and the signing was legitimate but suspended Jairo until July 1, 2013, saying that while the Rangers had done nothing wrong he had misrepresented his age and was therefore subject to discipline.

Beras was a highly scouted and sought after toolsy kid that teams understood would take significant time to develop – possessing all five tools, he was still lanky and growing and would take time to adjust to his body as he matured (on top of the struggles to adapt that most young international prospects face when coming over). After serving his suspension he struggled mightily last season, posting a .215/.314/.438/.752 slash line with 2 2Bs, 2 3Bs, and 2 HRs in 64 ABs in the Arizona Rookie League as a 17 year old. His season was cut even shorter than it would’ve been when he suffered a broken hamate bone and the organization chose to shut him down. While those numbers won’t impress fans who aren’t prospect-hounds, the more astute followers realize that Jairo was 2.5 years younger than the average age for players in the Arizona League last summer.

The Rangers have continued to be aggressive with Beras’ development, promoting him to A-level Hickory to begin this season. He had been middling along unnoticed by most throughout the early months of 2014, showing flashes of his ability at times but not sustaining the high level of play scouts feel he’s capable of as he continues developing. When you look at his numbers on the surface, they still don’t jump out at you – .245/.303/.339/.642 slash line with 10 2Bs and 4 HRs in 233 ABs – until you realize he’s 3.4 years younger than the average player in the SALLY League. When he hit his first HR for Hickory against Lakewood (in his 177th AB of the year) on June 16th his average climbed to .201, so it appears he’s finally getting comfortable and beginning to come into his own. In his last 10 games, Beras has slashed .447/.488/.737/1.225 with 2 2Bs, 3 HRs, 10 RBIs in 38 ABs.

The concern most scouts have about Beras (ranked as the Rangers’ #16 prospect coming into the season on John Sickels’ list) is similar to most prospects that possess the explosive power he’s flashed in the past – the ability to make adjustments and control the strike zone as he begins to face more advanced pitching. If he’s capable of making adjustments as he progresses, the last three weeks signal the upside many scouts saw when watching him prior to the point that he signed – a true five tool talent with perennial All-Star appearances on the way.

Remember, you can always hit me up on Twitter @clvclv_razzball, as well as in the comments section here.

 

 

 

From Around The Web

  1. IUPAC says:
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    Doesn’t relate but in sort of prospect news, you excited about Salazar’s return?

    • @IUPAC:

      We’ve seen the upside, just not sure he’ll ever develop enough control to reach anything resembling his ceiling other than in short bursts.

  2. Mike

    Mike says:
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    Chris, haven’t had a chance to comment on your posts yet, but great stuff.

    I found Beras on the wire for a dynasty team I took over recently and was glad to grab him since the “better” prospects had all already been picked clean. I’m a sucker for players that are young for their league and I’m looking forward to following this kid. Great write up on him.

    • @Mike:

      Thanks Mike. The feel I get for Beras is a lot like the one I had with Julio Teheran – so hyped early that you got tired of hearing about him, then when he finally struggled a bit everybody couldn’t get off the bandwagon fast enough. Always funny to hear people try to justify giving up on him so quickly, and think we’ll see much the same with Jairo.

  3. Dave says:
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    Good stuff. Soooo many people dropped him in my leagues. Time to stash. Thanks man.

    • @Dave

      That’s always the problem when you pick up the youngest prospects in fantasy leagues Dave – having enough patience to allow them to develop. I always have to step back and make myself remember what I was like at 16-17 years old, then imagine I’d been cut loose at that age in some of the biggest and most advanced cities in the world with money in my pocket. When you realize how hard it would’ve been to keep out of trouble (much less focus seriously on something) in that situation you start to understand why it often takes time. Complicate those factors with trying to adjust to a culture you’ve never experienced while everyone else is speaking a different language, and it’s pretty amazing that the number of them that actually do succeed make it.:

  4. gobiggreen says:
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    can’t wait to see if Alcantara’s skills translate into some production for the Cubbies over the next few days. could be a good glimpse of whats to come

  5. Matt says:
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    So Im in first in 50-man roster, 15-team, 5×5 roto dynasty.

    I know I overpaid, but through trades I basically traded

    Gary Sanchez, 2015 2nd rd, austin jackson, gabe guerrero, 2015 6th rd., Liriano, Clint Coulter, Teoscar Hernandez, Carlos Ruiz, Matt Wieters

    for

    David Ortiz, John Lackey, Salvador Perez, 2015 7th rd, 2015 9th rd

    Was it too too much?

    I think I locked up the prize though.

    Thank you

    • James says:
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      @Matt: @Dave:

      If it puts you over the top, then yes it is a good deal.

      If you are only starting a standard roster (9-10 hitters and 5-8 pitchers), the extreem depth is not as important with prospects. You are still looking for players that would be 15 team rosterable.

      Sal over Weiters and Ruiz (and looks, you picked up roster space)
      Lackey way over Liriano (he can turn it around, but who knows with him)
      Ortiz over AJax (he really is a boarderline 4th/5th Of in this format)

      hurts to lose the other moving parts there, but a few have limited upside, so no big loss, and Gary Sanchez is the only hurtful loss, but he is falling on a lot o prospect lists, so i need to look into it and see if something is wrong there.

      Also for a dynasty where you have a really uneven trade like this, I like to see what you picked up. I traded Odor in one league when he was called up, solely based on Alcantara being a FA. So i got Fister in the trade, and only mildly moved down in the prospect pecking order (and Alcantara could be on his way out too depending on the return… I am eyeing up Seager as a FA)

      • Alex says:
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        @James: Very thoughtfull, thanks. with 300 minor leaguers rostered, i will be picking up low A and rookie ball guys. But not until the March prospect draft, since the deadline to pick up minor leaguers has passed.

    • @Matt:

      Definitely a bit of an overpay, but no so much that I’d overly criticize it – the cost of winning is always high, otherwise everybody would do it!!!

  6. PedroF says:
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    Nice pieces of information!

  7. BitchesBeShoppach says:
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    I really enjoy your write ups. Well done

  8. English says:
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    Hey Chris. In a deep 30 team, 55 roster dynasty league with contracts I’ve been offered this deal;

    OF- Ryan Braun 2014: $10M 2015: $12M 2016: $19M 2017: $19M 2018: $19M 2019: $18M 2020: $16M 2021: $20M (CO)
    OF- Oswaldo Arcia 2014: $.5M (PP-2017)
    CI- Cody Asche 2014: $.5M (PP-2017)
    MI- Jonathan Villar 2014: $.5M (PP-2017)
    SP- Brett Oberholtzer 2014: $.5M (PP-2017)

    for

    OF- Bryce Harper 2014: $.5M (PP-2016)
    CI- Pablo Sandoval 2014: $8.5M (with Tag)
    C – Kevin Plawecki prospect

    It means I give up Bryce but get Braun back. Not sure if I should pull the trigger as I’m not really sold on Asche, Villar, Oberholtzer. What do you think? I’m not competing this year but could be next year.

    • Chris

      Chris says:
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      @English:

      Personally wouldn’t make that deal even if I were a Brewers fan. Braun’s contract is likely to have a chance to absolutely handcuff you – he’s been “banged-up” more now that he’s off the juice, over $16 million per for his age 36 and 37 seasons???

      I’m not very high (at all) on anyone else you’d be getting in return – Villar will be a backup by 2016 (at the latest), Asche may be one by then, I’m not sure Arcia will ever be very consistent at the MLB level (if he happens to hold down an every day job), and if Brett Oberholtzer’s in your rotation (fantasy or MLB), you’re in a lot of trouble.

      I understand shopping Harper if you’re building for the future, but that seems to be selling AWFULLY low on him to me.

  9. Pull da triggah? says:
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    Non keepers like Tulo Trout miggy zobrist grienke hammels wainright reyes trout rios price A.Sanchez desmond J Upton Samardzija Are on the lower teams who should want my keepers i have listed below.
    With tanaka going down my First place won’t remain till I trade off some keeper chips.

    Next years prices in a 260 12 team mixed 5×5
    K Bryant $6
    Alcanterra$4
    Hanley R $13
    Puig $8
    C.mart $5

    CAN YOU and our readers COME UP WITH Some TRADE SCENARIOS considering my roster below.
    C Santana
    C D’Arnaud
    1b Abreu
    COR Glldschmidt
    2B kiPnis
    SS Hanley
    Mid Lastella
    Of Puig
    Of Bruce
    Of pence
    Of gardener
    Of eaton
    U betts

    P loshe
    P bumgardnr
    P Zimmerman
    P C Martinez
    P eovaldi
    P Duffy
    PRosenthal
    P Rodney
    P Casilla
    B deGrom
    B Nelson
    DL wacha
    DL tanaka

    RUNS SB AVE ARE TIGHT BUT WITHOUT TANAKA K’s will be an issue
    Thanks all!

  10. pull the trigger?? says:
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    Non keepers like Tulo Trout miggy zobrist grienke hammels wainright reyes trout rios price A.Sanchez desmond J Upton Samardzija Are on the lower teams who should want my keepers i have listed below.
    With tanaka going down my First place won’t remain till I trade off some keeper chips.
    Next years prices in a 260 12 team mixed 5×5
    K Bryant $6
    Alcanterra$4
    Hanley R $13
    Puig $8
    C.mart $5
    CAN YOU and our readers COME UP WITH Some TRADE SCENARIOS considering my roster below.
    RUNS SB AVE ARE TIGHT and WITHOUT TANAKA K’s/W will be an issue
    C Santana
    C D’Arnaud
    1b Abreu
    COR Glldschmidt
    2B kiPnis
    SS Hanley
    Mid Lastella
    Of Puig
    Of Bruce
    Of pence
    Of gardener
    Of eaton
    U betts
    P loshe
    P bumgardnr
    P Zimmerman
    P C Martinez
    P eovaldi
    P Duffy
    PRosenthal
    P Rodney
    P Casilla
    B deGrom
    B Nelson
    DL wacha
    DL tanaka

    Thanks all!

  11. Alan says:
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    Is Giolito, Buxton, 2 2015 first rd picks, and david dahl enough in return for braun and scherzer in 15 team, 45 man roster (30 mlb, 15 milb) dynasty league?

    Thanks

    • Chris

      Chris says:
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      @Alan:

      That’d come close to getting me to make the deal, depending on how high the picks are. I might need a little more than Dahl to seal the deal if the picks aren’t both in the top 10, but that’s a pretty good haul as is IMO.

  12. goodfold2 says:
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    30 man OPS/holds league with $100 million budget. we are about to have a midseason all star break minor leaguer bidding session. one of only 2 times we can pick up minor leaguers (other is 5 round preseason (in jan-feb) draft). we can’t bid on guys just drafted in real life till that one. 30 man active slots with 20 minor league max slots (goes up to 25 next year). i’ll show you my roster and a list of prospects, please rank say the top 5 or 6. i’ll be going off Scott/BA lists from preseason as they don’t update those (and Scott of course won’t be either anymore). league only has CI/MI not specific infield positions, 2 each of CI/MI start. i’ve given 6 million extensions to some players preseason this year. if i cut those guys i’m on hook for half of their contract per year.

    D’Arnaud (400 K league minimum till end of 2016)/Recker (400 K this year only)
    Beltre (15 million, franchise tag so i own him as long as i give him that tag but have to pay fantrax real life money)
    Gillaspie (WSOX 1.31 mil this year)
    Z.Wheeler (400 k this year)
    Marwin G. (400 K this year)
    A. Escobar (3 mil till end of 2015)
    Kawasaki (400 K this year)
    A-Jax (400 k this year, 6.4 million next 2 years ext)
    Legares (3 mil this year)
    Leonys (3.1 mil till end of 2016)
    Other C. Dickerson (CLE, 400 K this year)
    Beltran (13 mil this year, will not be kept, was hoping to trade him if he had good first half)
    Pitchers:
    Eveland (400 K this year)
    Maurer (400 K this year)
    Kuroda (10 mil this year)
    Estrada (400 k this year, 6.4 mil next 2 years ext)
    Liriano (5.5 mil this year, 11.5 next 2 years ext)
    Sale (425 k till end of 2016)
    E.Santana (11.2 mil this year)
    Erasmo (400 K this year, 6.4 mil till end of 2016)
    Wooten (400 k this year)
    Fien (400 K till end of 2016)
    Melancon (412 k this year, 6.412 next 2 ext)
    H.Rondon (1.531 mil this year)
    Machi (1.471 mil this year)
    O’Day (1.251 mil this year)
    these prospects all of them are at 400k till end of 2017
    MI: Gumbs (NYY)
    H.Lee (TB)
    Phelps (BAL)
    Rosario (MIN)
    D.Robertson (OAK)
    Salcedo (ATL)
    CI: Jimenez (LAA)
    Morris (MIL)
    Jagielo (NYY)
    OF: Altherr (PHI)
    Wates (HOU)
    Snyder (TEX, but only this year, since i picked him up, him and Jimenez will be first cuts for space)
    P: Heredia (PIT)
    Velasquez (HOU)
    Ynoa (OAK)
    M.Cabrera (ATL)
    Alvarez (LAA)
    Hale (ATL)
    Tonkin (MIN, but only this year)

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      There’s gonna be a top 50 prospects list during the ASB…. I’d ask Chris, our new prospect writer, I don’t know half of these guys…

      • goodfold2 says:
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        @Grey: shit, i only intended above list to show team so as to be able to rank guys below, not rank guys above. it just took a while to type it. sorry, but thanks. now that i’m seeing it, it is useful in future of possible trades to know ranking of my own top 6 prospects. thanks guys.

    • goodfold2 says:
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      @goodfold2: please rank these top 5 with edge to OF/CI guys since i’m so weak in those areas in prospects. i’ll add the guy’s you’ve gone over that aren’t owned. in our bidding process you can
      1. pay the actual cost and term of your winning bid and put the minor league player into your minors slot (meaning he can’t come back up till he does in real life)
      or
      2. pay only league minimum (400 K) but if so you HAVE to leave the player (whether or not he comes up in real life) on your active roster for ROS. sort of a penalty (short term) for those who win bids. after the season is over they will cost 400 K till end of 2017 if you do it this way (no matter how much the bids were for). my team is middle of the road (11-16th) so i’m better off taking the discount, but wasting some active bench spots. I have around 24.5 million left to bid.
      Drury CI (ARI)/O’Neill OF (SEA)/Refsnyder MI (NYY/Wren OF (ATL)/Pompey OF (TOR)/Dosch OF (BAL)/Solarzano OF (MIA)/Romero MI (MIA)/Marte OF (ARI)/Gonsalves P (MIN)/M.Smyles P (BOS)/Kubitza P (DET)/T.Young CI (TB)/I.Wilson OF (NYM)/Astin P (MIL)/T.Willaims P (MIL)/R.Sanchez P (LAA)/Urena P (MIA)

      also if you know any other guys that came from lower prospect status than these but have moved up ranks a lot add them in. if internationals they could not have signed after june 1st this year for this bidding. those guys would be in next year’s draft. thanks, it’s hard to know the value of guys this deep.

      • goodfold2 says:
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        @goodfold2: also y.rodriquez OF (CIN)/ramsey OF (STL)/h.ramirez OF (PIT)/m.wright P (BAL)/t.berry P (BAL)/covey P (OAK). still best 5.

      • Chris

        Chris says:
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        @goodfold2:

        Pompey, Ramsey, Drury, Refsnyder, Solarzano, Urena

    • Chris

      Chris says:
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      @goodfold2:

      Sale, Beltre, Wheeler, d’Arnaud, Gillaspie, Leonys Martin, Jackson

      Lee, Rosario, Jagielo, Altherr, Cabrera, Velasquez

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