Well, we’ve had quite a week, eh? Lots of sexy promotions. Being a prospect writer is a touch bittersweet. It’s like watching a child grow. Once they graduate to the bigs in real life, they kinda graduate here too, moving up in the world of blog posts from minor league reports to the Grey League. Good luck Keston and Austin…I know you’ll make us proud. Back in the minors, our good friend Sixto Sanchez got a promotion to Double-A. His debut went swimmingly – even for a Marlin – striking out seven batters in six shutout innings. I was conservative in my ranking of Sanchez in the preseason, so if he continues to pitch well in the upper minors he’ll be a big riser when the midseason rankings come out. Despite the early promotion, I don’t think we’ll see Sanchez pitching meaningful innings for the Marlins this summer, if only because he hasn’t built up enough innings in previous seasons and the Marlins have other options such as Zac Gallen and Jordan Yamamoto in hand. Next year, Sanchez could be a very interesting flyer though. Here’s what else is happening around the minor leagues…Please, blog, may I have some more?
Please see our player page for Alec Bohm to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.
Phillies top prospect Alec Bohm went yard for the first time this week. He’s off to a strong start with Lakewood in the Sally – hitting .311 with four doubles, three steals, and the dong. More importantly, he’s walking at a 15% clip with a .400 on base percentage. After going 121 plate appearances in his pro debut last summer without a homer, this was a welcome display of power from the 22-year-old, who should advance quickly in the Phils system. Here’s what else is happening around the minor leagues…Please, blog, may I have some more?
The big club has a decent shot at the division this year, which is good – because the farm is looking lean. And not in that good “I’ve lost twenty pounds and can touch my toes again” lean. No, this is the lean where every other spec is a pitcher and even the top prospects don’t touch 60 with their overall grade. Will it matter? Maybe. It’s nice to build a contender and still have some big chips to trade during a run. But that’s asking for cake and eating it too. Sixto’s gone. That leaves last year’s draft pick as their best prospect. Meh. Grab a roast pork and let’s do this jawn.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Moving right along through our Top 100, we have the back half of the top 50 prospects for 2019 fantasy baseball. I could say that this is where the list gets interesting, but it’s just a list of (potential) baseball players on the internet, so “interesting” might be giving myself too much credit. If you’re just joining us, you may want to check out the top 25 prospects for 2019 fantasy baseball. And for full reports on each team’s prospects, you’ll want to hit the 2019 minor league preview index. Two things you’ll notice about this chunk of the list: 1) it’s where the better 2018 signees reside; and 2) more pitching. I find that this section of the rankings goes nicely with a 12-year-old Highland Single Malt. Or Dewars. Either way. It’s ten in the morning.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The first year player draft is an annual event for dynasty leagues, especially the really deep ones where everybody and their brother is already owned. They consist of players from the previous season’s draft and any international signings. These rankings will sometimes include MLB-ready prospects from abroad, and they’ll be relevant in standard redraft leagues. I’m spending a little extra time with the top ten, and next week the rest of the top 50 will roll out. That should get you through at least the first few rounds of a first year player draft. I’ve played in some really deep dynasty leagues and the approach changes dramatically depending on your competitive window, your draft position, and how many picks you have (some people collect FYPD picks like an 80’s kid collects Pogs). These rankings don’t take any of that into account and instead occur in a vacuum. I tend to value hitters over pitchers, hit tools over every other tool, and up-the-middle defenders over other positions. Also, these rankings consider 2018 performances in addition to the players’ scouting grades (some fared better than others in their first go at pro ball).Please, blog, may I have some more?
Another rainy weekend limited my looks on Saturday, as my intention to hit Lowell was washed out with a solid bout of the olde waterworks. Unfortunately, this forced on a Saturday of couch-sitting and MiLB.TV viewing. While nothing ever quite captures a player’s ability like a first person look, this at least allows me to be at several games at once from the comforts of my home. I’m starting to sound like copy for a commercial. Maybe it’s just regret eating me alive, and I’m apologizing in a round about way for not having anything first hand this Sunday. Doesn’t matter, the minors are in full swing and we got lots of players to cover. Because I’m just going to cover Vladimir Guerrero Jr. exclusively going forward we lead with him. Vlad kept his homer streak going Saturday, rising the number to four consecutive games. In fact it all started with the homer used in the lede on Thursday. He then hit another that night, followed by a homer Friday night, before sneaking (it was off the fielder’s glove) this one over the fence in right for a little Oppo-taco action.
Please, blog, may I have some more?
— HERD Chronicles (@HERDchronicles) August 11, 2018
This is for all the people that have come up to me over the last few weeks and asked “Yo, Ralph when’s that Top 100 droppin’ son?” And I said, “When it’s finished”. This is for y’all, one love! Oh but wait, there’s more to come too. This is simply a sweet, sweet 20% of the overall ranks. The full 500 will drop on Sunday. I want to thank all of my readers over the years for supporting me in all that I do here. These rankings posts are a lot of questioning your evaluations, and even more sleepless nights. So, I hope you enjoy. As for the Top 100, I’ve gone a little heavier in discounting pitching than in previous years, instead favoring upside bats. Why? Because pitching prospects are like reflections in side view mirrors, all much closer than they appear. Think about Shane Bieber vs. Tyler Glasnow, one guy was hyped to the max, the other was a boring strike-thrower that likely would never crack a top 250 for fantasy. Who would you rather own now? Speaking of upside, you’ll see the second half of this list is a little more upside heavy with some breakouts mixed in for good measure. What can I say? I like the young upside hitters. This exercise was a process,I began by listing nearly 700 players, then went player by player ranking each on a “would I trade this guy for this guy” trip, then I stared at the list changing ranks over and over again while I smoked like a German. That’s not a joke, this actually happened. All to whittle it down to the list below, the Top 100.Please, blog, may I have some more?
It’s a busy time in the world of prospecting, as I and many others that cover the Minor Leagues crunch on mid-season lists, we’re also inundated with new prospects to research, project, and rank. The hardest part is trying to balance the handful of categories, or types, these players fall into. First we have the college hitters; usually the highest floor options in terms of fantasy, we’ve seen quite a few of these types return nearly immediate value over the last 5-7 seasons in dynasty leagues. Next we have the high upside prep hitters; another category that has done well of late, notables like Royce Lewis, Jo Adell, and Brendan Rodgers fall into this bucket. Prep bats offer some of the highest upside, but the floor can be pretty low. The next variety is July 2nd hitters; a group with a long and exciting track record, but due to the age of these prospects, there’s a high rate of failure, and a good chance many of them fall off expectations quickly. While there are major red flags, you still think to yourself “that upside tho”. The next three flavors are all pitchers, and each of them offers their own set of unique benefits and challenges. College pitchers, are the closest to the finished product, but you get a lot of “strike-throwing-so-so-stuff” types, and those types of players are available on every wavier wire from here to Beijing. Then we have Prep Arms, the most deceptive of investments. If you read enough prospect ranks, scouting reports, and particularly draft coverage you’ll find yourself enamored with some of these arms. Think MacKenzie Gore, Riley Pint, Jason Groome, or Forrest Whitley, that’s a very up and down record of success. The final bucket is one that I don’t bother paying too much mind to in most dynasty formats, July 2nd pitchers. Really, there have been some great arms to emerge from this bucket, but it often takes two years until we even know which arms really have any MLB projection. All this to say, my ranks are heavily influenced by this simple mantra. Draft hitters, add pitchers from the wavier wire. That’s the process, and it’s not to say it’s perfect, but more often than not I find myself filled with regret after drafting a pitching prospect. I am not saying that Casey Mize isn’t awesome, he is, and if this were a “real-life” list I would have ranked him first or second, but if I’m entering a draft today, there’s for sure 3 hitters I take in front of him. It’s fine if you disagree, but process is process. Below is the early version of my first year player draft ranks. I reserve the right to change my mind over the coming months, and plan to update these in early to mid-October.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The majors leagues and minor leagues are in full swing. We have larger samples sizes to digest and discuss. College baseball’s tournament is just getting interesting, and the MLB draft was Monday. What an exciting time in the baseball calendar. This all shines through in this week’s show. Lance and I roll through some quick news, jump into our 5×5 highlighted by Khalil Lee, and Brent Rooker. Then dive into some draft post-mortem, using some superlatives to navigate the top few rounds. As always, big shouts to our sponsor Rotowear! You can order the Rotowear Classic shirts I spoke about on the show by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 20% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Prospect Podcast:Please, blog, may I have some more?
First we baked the cake, then we made the frosting. Today we put the whole thing together, for your consumption. What the hell am I talking about? It’s First Year Player Draft day for Monday’s 2018 MLB Draft. As has become annual tradition on the show, Lance and I release, debate and discuss the first edition of our 2018 First Year Player Draft rankings. We of course start the show with some of the top minor league news like Forrest Whitley’s return, and Shane Bieber’s promotion. We then jump into our 5×5, where Lance and I each choose 5 minor leaguers to discuss. Around minute 50 we start the ranks, making it as deep as 15-20 players. If that’s not enough coverage for you, Lance, myself, as well as others will be doing a live draft reaction show on Monday night. Make sure to check Twitter for that. And as always big shouts to our sponsor Rotowear! You can order the 1.01 Dad shirt I spoke about on the show by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 20% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Prospect Podcast:Please, blog, may I have some more?