Sometimes things in life don’t work out. Despite your best efforts, some things just aren’t meant to be. Today, my friends isn’t one of those times. No, quite the opposite in fact. Today is one of those days when everything goes right. All the lights you hit are green, everyone greets you with a smile, and you start writing a post about Dodgers farmhand Brock Stewart, and he’s called up. Things rarely turn out this way in life, at least mine, maybe yours is different. I’m going to stop there before this turns into a more self indulgent undertaking than any mid-aughts emo band. My apologies to anyone listening to a Dashboard Confessional song while reading along (P.S. Kick your own ass). Today we’ll take a deeper look at the Dodgers latest rotation member, and see what we can expect from Stewart in the near future. We’ll then close things out with a truncated minor league update, just so I can get some nuggets of info into your heads. We’ll be skipping our usual bi-weekly Minor League Update post this Sunday, for the midseason top 100 fantasy baseball prospects. That’s right! Get excited, we can all argue about my over-ranking, under-ranking, and just general ignorance on your favorite prospects.

 

There’s no one path to success in the majors. Not everyone in the top 100 will be a major league contributor, and there are plenty of prospects off everyone’s radar that make an impact each season. I’m not sure if I’ve said that a bunch during my tenure as Razzball’s resident Prospector, but it’s something I hold to be true. Today’s prospect profile is a perfect example of this. Brock Stewart didn’t make the Baseball America Dodgers top 30, Minorleague.com’s Dodger top 20, and has randomly popped up as MLB.com’s 26th best Dodgers spec. The later looks to be an updated list, because I have no recollection of seeing him on the March version. All this to say that he was off the radar.

Stewart’s journey is one of a path less ordinary, but not one entirely foreign in the baseball world. Stewart played his college ball for his father Jeff at Illinois State. He spent most of his time there manning 3rd base for the Redbirds. Called upon during when needed as a reliever, Stewart showed enough in his limited time on the mound that the Dodgers decided to take him in the 2014 6th round as a pitcher. He started his professional career with the Dodgers rookie ball team. There he had a solid showing going 3-2 with a 3.41 ERA, and a 11.8 k/9 over 34.1 innings. The 2015 season started with an assignment to the Dodgers A affiliate in Great Lakes. There he made 7 starts going 2-2, with a 2.84 ERA, a 9.0 k/9, and a 1.42 Bb/9. He was then promoted to hi-A Rancho Cucamonga where he struggled in 12 starts and 6 relief appearances.

To start the 2016 campaign, Stewart was once again optioned to hi-A Rancho Cucamonga. It was there that he started his incredible assent to the major leagues. Out of spring training a few Dodgers fan-sites had spoke of an uptick in velocity and life on his fastball. Word was he had jumped from sitting 89-92 regularly, to 92-95, touching 96 on occasion. Sure enough he displayed just that at RC, and then Tulsa and then OKC. Compiling an impressive statline along the way; over 14 starts this year he’s 8-3 with a 1.47 ERA, .86 WHIP, a K/9 of 10.4 to a Bb/9 of 1.5 across three levels. All things considered, this was a very quick ascension for a player that had barely focused on pitching.

He starts this evening against the Brewers, and I’m excited to see what he can do. It’s not the worst possible matchup, and with news of Clayton Kershaw’s back acting up, it’s not far fetched to imagine a scenario where Stewart sticks around. His profile, statistics, and attributes all point to a potential solid major league starter in the making. He’s got the stuff, with a live mid-90’s fastball, a plus change, and depending on who you read, a slider(s), that grade everywhere from average to fringe plus. I say slider(s) because Baseball America’s report states that he uses two different sliders, one that’s a wipeout pitch that he gets batters to chase, and another that he throws for strikes. (Or maybe he just throws it outside the zone sometimes…but I digress). Regardless of what his arsenal consists of, he knows how to spot them, and has advanced command. He’s got the ideal frame at 6’3 210, so he’s built to carry some innings. He’s got the freshest arm in the system; Stewart hasn’t been a pitcher his whole life so unlike a lot of other pitching specs Stewart hasn’t taxed his arm. Low milage isn’t just a win for car owners! His innings limit is a concern having never thrown more than 110 frames in any season. He’s at 80 now, I don’t know how that effects him, but as previously stated, he has no injury history and is built like a workhorse. Best case scenario we’re talking about a number three pitcher with the ability to get on a hot streak which makes him look unbeatable. At worst he’s a back of the rotation guy with some k upside.

Big shouts to J-FOH for inspiring this one with his Dodgers love, and valued text banter on all things prospects.

 

Minor League News and Notes

  • It’s been a big couple of weeks for promotions throughout the minors, Lucas Giolito was promoted to Washington, Brandon Nimmo to the Mets, Brock Stewart to the Dodgers, Kyle Freeland was promoted to AAA Albuquerque, Alex Bregman and Teoscar Hernandez were (reportedly) promoted to AAA Fresno, Yoan Moncada joined Andrew Benintendi in Portland, Indians super-catching prospect Francisco Mejia and Ian Happ, often the forgot future star of last year’s first round, was promoted to AA Tennessee.
  • Speaking of Ian Happ his first week in AA couldn’t have gone better, well it could but he’d have to hit 1.000 with 17 homers in 17 plate appearances. As my high school latin teacher once said in a moment of self reflection, no one is perfect. (Don’t be so hard on your self Mr. Scully you were only a former Harvard Valedictorian making $25,000 teaching latin to kids with Boston accents). Any the who, Happ is hitting .733/.706/1.267 with an OPS of 1.973 with 2 homers. Yeah and he’s going to have 2B and OF eligibility once he matriculates, whether with the Cubs or another team (Yankees?)
  • The Future’s Game rosters were announced on Tuesday (I think), and you can check them out here. Obviously a lot of interesting players, a few guys missing I would have liked to have seen (cough cough Happ), but all in all it will be the event that has my attention from the upcoming All-Star festivities. I like The Future’s game for one reason, all the stupid things the announcers say about prospects that get repeated to me over the next few weeks. If Hunter Dozier hits a homer, he’ll all of a sudden be the next Nolan Arenado. National TV and bad announcing has a way of confusing the masses and empowering idiots.
  • Ho hum, Tyler Glasnow won another game at AAA Indianapolis. He went 6 strong allowing 2 runs, on 4 hits, and 4 walks, with 5 k’s. I get it Pirates, he walks batters, but so does Francisco Liriano and you guys trot his old ass out there. I won’t even get into Jon Niese, who doesn’t walk batters, he just main streets everything.
  • Hey remember Jose Berrios? You guys all loved him prior to his call up, then you got off him quicker than a Kardashian does a rapper. Well, he’s en fuego again, firing 1 hit ball over 7 innings against the Paw-Sox, after throwing 8 two hit innings against Columbus last Thursday. I would imagine he’s on the shortlist for a callup.
  • Speaking of pitching specs we all forgot, don’t look now but former Red Sox first round pick Trey Ball is finally starting to put things together for hi-A Salem. Over his last three starts he’s 3-0 with a .93 ERA, the K’s aren’t there (13 in 19.1 innings).
  • Padres catching prospect Austin Hedges was on an epic tear at the end of last week, slugging homers in 5 consecutive games. He’s no longer technically a prospect having passed him limits last year, but for our intents and purposes he is. He’s really been on a tear all season slashing .372/.423/.734 with 9 homers and 28 steaks.
  • Trea Turner has started consecutive games in centerfield. Grey mentioned this in his post on Tuesday, but my guess is this is their way of getting him into the lineup…..FINALLY!!!

 

Follow me on twitter @Ralphlifshitzbb

 

 
  1. Schwab says:
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    Great prospect write-up’s.
    Dynasty question. H2H point based league with 8 teams. Keep 15 each year. Was offered Bryant and Belt for Strasburg, Hosmer and Marte. Thoughts?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Schwab: I like the Bryant side. If you can get Bryant for Stras and Marte I do it, Belt and Hosmer is a wash.

  2. El Famous Burrito says:
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    Brock Stewart isn’t even in ESPN’s database, that’s how obscure he is.

    Trey Bell, that’s a name I haven’t heard in a long time…..

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @El Famous Burrito: Yeah right! I totally wanted to stream him in perts.

  3. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    thanks for the great news/post.Waing on Glasnow and Bregman. Bregman going to AAA today i believe

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @AL KOHOLIC: I hope so! I was just informed by J-FOH that the Astros met with Gourriel, that’s no Bueno for Bregman if he signs there. At least for re-draft stash value

  4. brett says:
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    Ralph

    Do you think Giolitto stays up?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @brett: I think he gets another start or two. Depends how long Stras is out.

  5. J-FOH says:
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    I hate that you outbid me for Brock but to be fair, I got too loaded and never completed my waiver a week ago. At least I got him in the rejects league which is starting to shape up to something special for team FOH-Cheezy

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @J-FOH: My team is like a bag of really ripe bananas. I just hope I get to eat them before they go bad.

      I hope Brock goes off so I can trade-rape you.

      • J-FOH says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: my orifice is waiting for your offer

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @J-FOH: Nice better start stretching

          • J-FOH says:
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            @Ralph Lifshitz: would that be a trade plug?

            • Ralph Lifshitz

              Ralph Lifshitz says:
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              @J-FOH: I think so. They sell them at Adam and Dweeb

              • J-FOH says:
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                @Ralph Lifshitz: It I’ll be Mr. Slave Trade

  6. What Would Dykstra Do? says:
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    Does Brock stay up if he does well? In a 12 team h2h keeper, is he a good pick up?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @What Would Dykstra Do?: I would give him a ride, if he’s even in waviers haha.

      • Krazybone says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: yeah that would be absolutely SUCKING right now lolol

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @Krazybone: Haha that he is.

          • Krazybone says:
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            @Dnut Eastwood: gotta get that money man! Also, need more pitching

  7. Raider says:
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    Berrios over odorizzi or the cobbler when he’s called up?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Raider: over the cobbler

  8. David says:
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    Nice write up Ralph. Who ya got in a dynasty, Puig or Mazara? Thanks.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @David: MAZARA!!! I’m a little into him

      • Goodwill Hunting 2: Hunting Season says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: i’d be surprised at this point if even 30% of people would take puig over maz in a dynasty.

  9. DJ says:
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    Berrios, Brock Stewart, or Cody Reed?

    • DJ says:
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      @DJ: And ERA is most important for me

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @DJ: ERA go Stewart, better park and division setup. I love Reed and Berrios but I think they might be more likely to roofie you.

  10. Mike says:
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    Hold Severino and Rodriguez (Ed) in dynasty or cut the cord for a guy like Shoemaker or Matt Moore?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Mike: Are you competing or not? If not I’d hold, if you are, hell yeah drop em’. Particularly in a league where Shoemaker or Moore are available.

      • Mike says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: No not this year. Didn’t know if they were worth holding though or those guys were better long term or even another prospect. Im even starting to worry about Buxton even though I’d probably be an idiot to let him go.

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @Mike: I’d say hold then, maybe they all have some second half value and at worst you can decide who to move on from then.

  11. phil says:
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    Hoskins or Healy to make an impact in the 2nd half…also long term ???

    Cheers

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @phil: Healy probably makes more of an impact this year, but Hoskins long term for sure.

  12. thorbs says:
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    What do you think about Hedges? Has he turned a corner with the stick, or just a hot streak? His defensive game has never been in question, just his ability to hit the ball.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @thorbs: I think he hits enough to be an everyday catcher. I’m not sure he’s going to be a fantasy star like Contreras, Gary Sanchez, or Mejia could be.

  13. Himom says:
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    Who is the next minors guy up? Josh Bell would’ve been nice for them to have at Seattle to DH for the weekend.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Himom: I think it’s Turner now that he’s getting starts in center.

      I don’t get the Pirates.

  14. Nightpandas says:
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    Hey Ralph,

    What kind of pitcher would you want in return for Mazara In a keeper where I am trying to win this year?

    Velasquez And Nola have been offers so far…too low

    Thanks Man…

    • Nightpandas says:
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      @Nightpandas: thinking of offering Mazara And the Codys (Allen and Reed) for Adam Jones and 2 of Maeda/Keuchel/Pineda to a rebuilding owner

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph LIfshitz says:
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        @Nightpandas: I don’t like that trade personally. I’d want someone like Carrasco for Mazara. He’s that good.

  15. ichirosan says:
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    20-man H2H dynasty league, we can keep 20 players from year to year according to a tiered format.

    My SP are in absolute disarray (after Bumgarner, the best ones I have are Verlander and the corpse of Marcus Stroman). I’m considering trading Byron Buxton, as we only start 3 OFs and 1 UTIL.

    What kind of SP should I expect in return?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @ichirosan: Right now? It depends how high someone is on him. If you got back anything more than Ian Kennedy you might be lucky. 6 months ago you could have gotten anybody.

      • ichirosan says:
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        @Ralph LIfshitz: So, what would you do? Hold on to him in the hopes que recoups some value?

        • Goodwill Hunting 2: Hunting Season says:
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          @ichirosan: yep

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @ichirosan: Yeah for sure

  16. Grassy Knoll Redding says:
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    Hey Ralph,
    Great write-up as usual! I haven’t heard much about how Trea Turner’s experiences in CF went. Is he taking to the position well? What kind of time-frame do you see for him getting called up?
    Thanks!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Grassy Knoll Redding: He’s had three games and I haven’t seen any. Will have to see what the internet says in a week or so. His first start there was Monday.

  17. Brian says:
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    for this year and going forward in a dynasty, can you rank Kuhl, Voth, and Chad green?

    thanks.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Brian: Voth, Green, and Kuhl. That’s mostly K-centric bias.

  18. Steve says:
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    Severino or De Leon (LAD), for speculative brilliance in the next 3 weeks, assuming a call up of course.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Steve: I’m very weary of de Leon’s injury history, I’d still roll with Severino.

  19. Roll of SAGNOF, Hear my Cry says:
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    Who do you like most long-term:

    Mike Fulmer
    Daniel Norris
    Trevor Bauer
    Henry Owens
    Keven Gausman

      • Roll of SAGNOF, Hear my Cry says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz:

        Thanks! Do you think Hamels at $36 for, Devers at $1, and Kelvin Herrera $6 in exchange for Fulmer at $5, Mondesi at $1, and Swihart at $5 is fair/good ? Prices are for 2017.

        AL Only Dynasty Points league

  20. Slim

    Slim says:
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    15team, ALonly. Keep 22. Not on player pool until they are called up, or started the year on the 40-man roster. Is Tyler White worth holding on to? I guess the real question is do you think Tyler White will ever (again) be an everyday player? His in-league trade value right now seems almost non existent but I figure someone FAABs him if I drop him.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Slim: Not a big believer in White.

  21. danny almonte says:
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    In a vacuum, in a 12 team keeper, keep Giolito in round 14 or W. Contreras in rd 14?

    Also if you had to pick 2 to keep, the 2 above, or one of Cole/Carrasco/Salazar in round 6. Thanks

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @danny almonte: Cole and Giolito

  22. Los locos says:
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    Looking For some info on josh bell and what to expext? Any word when he could be called up… What type of hitter is he? Also moncada when will he be up and what his expectations ?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Los locos: Probably a .300ish hitter, less power than you’d expect, but a solid player.

  23. Hometown Heroes says:
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    Hey Ralph, I know you are a big fan of Kyle Lewis but where would he rank as far as prospects go? Top 50? Top 25? Thanks again

  24. goodfold2 says:
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    hell ya, my mauricio cab ATL moving up, had this dude for years in a 30 man league.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @goodfold2: Ha! Good luck

  25. Crabman says:
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    So Erod back down to the farm to work on his pitch tipping. What is his ceiling if he can fix those issues. Stash in 12 team keeper? Thanks

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Crabman: I just traded him in a dynasty for Corbin, I’m a little weary. Don’t have the same faith I once did.

  26. Steve says:
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    Severino or Guerra ROS (knowing Severino still has to be called up)

Comments are closed.