How’s your season going so far?

Settling into the habits and rhythms you’ll need to succeed?

I sure hope you’re doing a little better than me scrambling to manage 15 leagues. Definitely shaving that number wherever I can between now and next spring. I am enjoying the feeling of constant motion that makes dynasty baseball my favorite format, but that’s exactly what I’m doing so far this year: flipping from roster to roster to keep up with my daily lineups, filing claim lists as early as I can begin knowing I’ll have to rework anything later, just throwing constant work at the problem, is what I’m saying. I’ve always been a proponent of working smart. Gonna have to work pretty hard to thrive no matter what you do, but you can at least try to enhance your efficiency as you go along. That’s what I hope to offer here each week: a quick read that feels much more like working smarter than working hard. Let’s dive in. 

“Hey Mr. Rumsfield!” (in the voice of young Corey Feldman)

Heads up if you play on Fantrax, where 6’5” 225 lb TJ Rumfield is listed as a third baseman for the Phillies, who drafted him in the 12th round of the 2021 draft before shipping him to New York over the off-season. He’s more likely to land at first base or DH long term, but this guy can thump, and he has good plate discipline despite losing some reps throughout his trek to the pros, transferring from Texas Tech to Virginia in college to find playing time and then losing 2020 to the pandemic. I’m adding him in the deep-minors, 20-team SGL dynasty league this weekend and will try to find room for him even in shallower formats just in case this is the start of something big. He’s slashing .412/.487/.735 in eight games with two homers and two steals. 

Kansas City made big waves in player development last season, especially in AA where Nick Pratto and MJ Melendez bounced back from big downturned in strikeout rate and plate-approach. SS Maikel Garcia might be next on this list. He doesn’t have the power of the prior two, but he’s much faster, swiping six bags in ten games this season as a 22-year-old. He’s walking at a 21.3 percent clip and striking out 14.9 percent of the time. He’s slugging just .432 despite a .378 batting average, so he’ll need to make more impact to keep pitchers from simply pounding the zone against him. In his favor, he’s a plus defender already, which buys him time to keep growing as a human and learning as a hitter. 

Boston SS David Hamilton (AA) was stealing bases faster than the grounds crew could replace them last year as a Milwaukee prospect, and he’s back at it in Boston. The 24-year-old left handed hitter has two home runs and eight stolen bases in eight games, slashing .343/.429/.571 with a 14.3%/16.7% BB/K rate. He doesn’t have a ready-made position if he keeps hitting like this, but the club acquired him via trade for a reason, so I’m not sure he’s as blocked as he appears to be at first glance. 

Boston SS Cedanne Rafaela (A+) took center stage in some dynasty circles during Sunday’s faab run thanks to his hot start in a small ballpark. He’s got five homers and four steals in ten games, slashing .391/.429/.826 with an 18.4 percent strikeout rate. We’ve got a $200 budget in the Razz30 ($0 bids allowed), and my $31 for the ninja turtle’s services lost out by two bucks. His line is a bit inflated by the 296 foot right field corner in the ballpark, but Rafaela can play solid defense just about anywhere on the diamond and features plus athleticism and twitch that generates power uncommon to 5’8” hitters. 

Keep an eye on Tampa OF Alexander Ovalles (A+), who has nine walks and five strikeouts in seven games. The Rays identified Ovalles as a piece they wanted from Texas, and he’s rewarding them with a .444/.630/.889 as a 21-year-old, a little young for his level. 

Seattle OF Robert Perez (A) played 19 games in AAA as a 19 year old in 2019. I can’t really track why that happened, but I’m looking into it after Perez hit three homers Friday night, giving him five in ten games. He’s 21 years old, so he’s got plenty of time, and I’ve got a lot to learn about him yet. He slashed .282/.359/.456 in 98 games in A ball last year, so I’m just confused all around here. Why push him so far in 2019 and then slam the brakes when he should’ve graduated the level last year? I’ve got questions! 

Cincinnati RHP Joe Boyle rules the High-A level so far this year, tossing eight hitless innings and recording 17 strikeouts along the way. He has allowed five walks in those eight innings, so it’s not all positive, but the guy throws a Henry Roengardner fastball around 101, so it’s easy to understand why low-minors hitters might just watch it go by and hope it’s a ball from time to time. The Reds have been developing arms well these past few seasons, and Boyle presents them a variety of paths. He’s a 2020 draftee who is 22 years old, so they’ve got some time to decide whether they want the slow road of Boyle trying to become a starter or the quick-reward of seeing how his stuff plays in a relief role against more experienced hitters. I’m excited to track this one. 

Not really prospect news, but Victor Robles got dropped in my 15-team dynasty this week. Donkey Teeth snapped him up for about a third of his full-season budget ($341). I bid a little less than $200, but in the aftermath, seeing how heavily I’d been outbid, I was thinking about how far I might’ve gone if I’d known I needed to. What my FAAB ceiling for a dropped but struggling talent like him? This league doesn’t allow $0 bids, so if I got much higher than $350, I’d have to pinch pennies the rest of the way. I quickly decided I wouldn’t care. Go get your guys. I’ve been writing about Robles in this space all off-season, but I was thinking I’d be $100 over in the 190-range. Who cares? I’ve sold players off for FAAB before and could do it again if I had to. Pretty sure I misplayed this one. Robles is already showing a pulse as the newest member of team Teeth.

Thanks for reading!

I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter. 

 

21 Comments
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sport
sport
3 months ago

Hey Itch! School getting crazy now that it’s winding down toward summer? I was a teacher for 20 years and I remember once we hit the middle of April, it was over. The kids could see the light and it gave them a new found level of squirmy seat and roller coaster emotions! And for the teachers too!

My redraft leagues are crazy this year! I had a lot of shares in India, Teoscar, LouRob, and Baz, and not to mention slow starts from Bichette and Tucker who ended up on most of my teams as well. But I’m still in the top 3 in all of those leagues.

In a 12 team dynasty, I traded Veen for Marcelo Mayer. I have grown to impatient in Rockies prospects due to how they handle them. I loved getting Marcelo but have a guy just reach out to me to see if he’s available. I should finish at the top in the standings so I’m far from rebuild. Is Marcelo a sell high to you or a must hold?

Lower The Jolly Roger
Lower The Jolly Roger
3 months ago

Itch my dude.. 12 team roto … keep 10 + 10 farm/stash… Flipped my Tucker for Eloy/Turner/B Lowe (who i immediately flipped for Pratto straight up) … did I do ok here ?? Fingers crossed .. all happened pretty quickly … thank you as usual

Anthony
Anthony
3 months ago

Itch – thoughts on Allen of Oakland or Wong on Boston? Both recently called up but haven’t seen you blurb about either yet.

Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Reply to  Anthony
3 months ago

i think he years ago liked wong although that MIGHT have been ralph even further ago. he’s ex LAD.

Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Reply to  The Itch
3 months ago

i think the thought was years ago that he’d be a util guy with a bunch of positions like son of donald on OAK even more years ago (pretty sure son of donald used to have like C/1B/OF/3B and maybe even 2B)

Prawn Lord
Prawn Lord
3 months ago

Hey Itch! Love putting new names on my radar from these prospect updates.

I’m really trying to get Oneil Cruz in my dynasty league. Would you trade Castellanos for Cruz and Jesus Sanchez? I might be able to get another piece added.

Thanks!

Jimmy
Jimmy
3 months ago

13 team dynasty! 5×5 I just dropped Beer, for Rowdy! Probably not a good move, but I am ready to contend and needed a back up for Alonso…might be awhile for Beer to shed the DH designation in ESPN…Grey loves Rowdy so I don’t feel so bad!

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Jimmy
3 months ago

it might be a month even in yahoo to get beer his 1B, unless i’m way off he’s started once there.

Short porch party
Short porch party
3 months ago

Hey itch love your articles must read for me every week. Keep up the great work. Just seeing if you’d have made the trade I did this week. 12 team dynasty league h2h 5×5 my pitching was mediocre so I traded Jordan walker for Logan Gilbert. I have miranda mayi and blaze at 3b also. Now my pitching looks decent.
Burnes
Webb
Severino
Luis Garcia
Kyle wright
Logan Gilbert
Trevor rogers
Hader
Romano
Johan duran
Max Myers
Kyle Harrison
Thanks for the feedback ?

Short porch party
Short porch party
Reply to  Short porch party
3 months ago

Sorry no question mark fat thumbs

goodfold2
goodfold2
3 months ago

12 teamer with shallow starting roster slots (3 OF 1 util no CI nor MI) but large benches, OPS/OBP added, QS and holds too. gotta drop 3 of these shortly:
k.rob CF
n.gonz 2B/SS
hedbert LF
matos CF
espino SP
e.perez SP
miranda 2B/3B
brujan 2B/CF
o.cruz SS (probably OF by time he’s back)
j.walker 3B
gotta think from these shallow OF’ers and just overall ranks in general k-rob and hedbert easy cuts. but that 3rd doesn’t seem easy. SP prospects are often by some owners hoarded more than hitters. and with deep benches i want more SP anyway. rest of hitting probably relevant:
C DTD arnaud
1B wisdom (3B/OF)
2B muncy (1B)
SS c.taylor (almost everything but C)
3B mondesi (SS)
LF yordan
CF renfroe (RF)
RF franmil
util profar (also lots)
BN dalbec (1B/3B)
IR: acuna (RF, gonna be awhile before he gets CF back too), naquin (all OF)

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  The Itch
3 months ago

yeah went back and checked top 100 after typing this, figured it’d be him or a pitcher (knew espino/eury either back to back or close, walker/miranda/matos also back to back to back earlier). it’s for a league where we keep 28 non NA tagged guys and the draft is ONLY NA (at that time, when a lot of those since it’s yahoo don’t even get that till later usually) max 7. plus can only draft those IN yahoo (of course that’s not as big a deal as it used to be when any respectable top 100 they’d be missing say 30 out of, probably down to 40-50 out of top 200 now, most of those 101-200th, without looking o.colas might be the highest not there currently (they are esp bad at internationals)). then anybody that gets NA tagged later you get 2 weeks into season to drop or not if over 7. in season similar 2 week clock (if over 7), if under 7 can obtain all year long etc (also if news indicates somebody is being called up it’s fine to obtain even if at 7). oddly somebody dropped o.cruz and my 3rd waiver got that done (first waivers goes with NA draft as the “draft”). wasn’t getting suzuki and cruz, was happy to get one of them and i’m already quite good at LF/RF (acuna/yordan). acuna’s stealing in the minors already (which is very nice). be even better if/when acuna gets his CF back (might take till i don’t know june or something even for 5 starts though). one yucky thing that applies to other redrafts where i went acuna somewhere in the 10-14th range, yep, lost RBI’s, runs, steals, total bases by very small margins matchup 1 (think under 3 for all of them)

Anthony
Anthony
Reply to  goodfold2
3 months ago

Franmil or Renfroe ROS? Thanks

Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Let Us Now Praise Famous Death Dwarves
Reply to  Anthony
3 months ago

54 buck steak (franmil)