Please see our player page for Alex Kirilloff 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.

Yup, so we’re just chugging right along here in minor league land. There were/are plenty of games yesterday, today, and tomorrow for those of you who can’t go a day without baseball. While we were all watching Albombso win the Derby Monday night, Atlanta Braves first base prospect Bryce Ball made his own statement with a pair of homers in the Appy league. That’s seven on the year in seventeen games, hitting .373 with eleven walks to nine strikeouts. That’s the real good stuff from a lefty bat who was drafted in the – let me check my notes here – yup, drafted in the 24th round last month. 727th overall if you’re keeping score. Bryce is a big boy and obviously old for Rookie ball at 21, but here’s a fine example of why prospects are cool, this is all guesswork, and if you talk about prospects in absolutes you usually end up looking like a complete idiot. So hedge your bets. Keep your arms healthy, your mind open, and drink a cold Coor’s Light while you watch a full slate of MiLB games today. Here’s what else is happening around the minor leagues…

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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…

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NL WestNL WestNL Central | NL East || AL West | AL Central | AL East

I don’t pay much attention to Spring Training Statistics.  You never know who the statistics are coming against.  Baseball-Reference did, however, have an amazing tool last year that attempted to quantify the quality of opposing pitchers or batters faced during spring training games on a scale from 1-10 with 10 being MLB talent and 1-3 being high A to low A level.  This tool is great, but it averages all the Plate Appearances or batters faced.  You would still need a deeper dive to see if your stud prospect smacked a donger off of Chris Sale or off of your kid’s future pony league baseball coach.  So what should we watch for in March when we’re starved for the crack of the bat?  Ignore “best shape of their life” stories and Spring Training statistical leaderboards.  Pay attention to injuries and lineup construction and position battles!

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I’m Ralph Lifshitz, and I am not on this podcast. It’s a strange phenomenon. Work pulled me away from the show for the week, so Lance returned and brought Jason Woodell on to bless us with his top notch insights. The boys talk The Mets, as well as a few of Jason’s favorite prospects coming into 2019. They then wrap up the show with some discussion of their mentalities when working on the forthcoming Top 100 list. It’s guaranteed to be a classic show so tune in to catch all that. It’s the latest episode of the Razzball Prospect Podcast powered by Prospects Live. 

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Rankings season is upon us. Rejoice and be glad! Just like when your dad lets you open one present on Christmas Eve before Santa comes the next morning, I’m dropping the first of three Top 100 prospect rankings on January Grey Rankings Eve. January Grey Rankings Day should be a gosh dern national holiday. This Top 25 will be followed by a Top 50 on Wednesday and finally the rest of the Top 100 next Sunday. For detailed info on any of these prospects, go to the 2019 Minor League Preview Index. There, you’ll find links to all thirty team pages, their top ten prospects, and my (vague and misinformed) thoughts on each of them. Later this offseason, I’ll release a special list just for redraft leagues once some playing time etc. situations come into sharper focus. Enough chatter. Here’s the Top 25 fantasy baseball prospects for 2019…

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Jesus’s teachings are highlighted on this week’s Ditka Pod. Razzball’s own Prospect Jesus that is. Us and Ralph Lifshitz discuss a bunch of prospects who could have significant fantasy impacts for 2019 fantasy baseball.

First, Jesus shares his prophecies regarding when some of the top prospects in the game will arrive to the big show, including Vlad Jr, Eloy Jimenez, Fernando Tatis Jr, Forrest Whitley, Keston Huira and many others. Then Ralph settles some debates on which prospects are most worth gambling on at their current early draft season ADPs before rattling off some deeper prospects with legitimate 2019 fantasy potential. When Jesus talks, we listen!  Kanye voice, “Jesus talks.”

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I’ve learned several important lessons in my adult life. Cheez-its are the ideal snack. Lauder’s whisky is just as good as the expensive stuff. Children want you to spend time with them. And yet, soaking Cheez-its in whisky to sneak it into the movie that you’re attending with your children is somehow not a sound plan. Oh, and Byron Buxton is probably not the next Mike Trout. Lessons learned. This year’s Minnesota preview was really hard to whittle down to ten. There’s a nice balance between high upside guys, specs that are close, and some decent pitching. It’s just a good, deep system. Good and deep like the flavor of Lauder’s Blended Scotch Whiskey. This intro has been brought to you by Lauder’s Blended Scotch Whisky. I present the Minnesota Twins top ten fantasy prospects for your disapproval.

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Razzball’s own Paul The Martian (on Twitter @PaulTheMartin) makes a guest appearance on this week’s Ditka, Sausage Pod! Discussion topics include 2019 #2earlymock drafts, Yankees players, The Martian’s expectations for Nolan Gorman, Alex Kiriloff, Keston Hiura, and Jesus Luzardo, as well as, potential tax evasion techniques, and of course, some flat earth discussion.

Are Aaron Judge and Christian Yelich fantasy first rounders for 2019? Acuna or Vlad in dynasty leagues? Gleyber or Andujar for rookie of the year? Who is Black Grapefruit?

Find out the answer to all of these questions in addition to why Mallex Smith was forced to seek a restraining order against Paul, right here:

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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.

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Doesn’t it feel as though every year, a college hitter is taken near the top of the draft and immediately takes to the lower levels like a fish to water? In the grand tradition of recency bias, Nick Madrigal has emerged as our early favorite for the superlative “first to the majors”. Despite going 0-for-5 Saturday night, he’s hitting .389/.390/.472 with 2 steals through 10 games at Low-A Kannapolis. Here’s the remarkable thing, across 51 plate appearances between the AZL and Sally League he’s yet to strikeout. Zero. He hasn’t walked a ton, drawing a free pass just twice, and he hasn’t shown a ton of power either, he’s yet to homer in the 15 games he played. Instead knocking just two doubles. Hopefully due to the quality of contact he can fall into a dozen plus homers in his prime years. So I suppose that begs the question, is it a “better in real life” profile? There’s a good chance that’s the case, he could be a .285 hitter with 10-14 homers and a dozen steals. That’s a solid player, but it’s not what you’re looking for at the top of your first year player draft. That however is worst case scenario in my opinion. The ceiling looks like this; the power develops into a 17-20 homer number, with a .300+ batting average, and 15 or so steals. He scores a ton of runs, your team loves it, and everybody gets ice cream. That’s not a pipe dream to wish on either, this kid’s hit tool is a legit 70. That alone should give him a pretty good shot at being a top of the order, run producing type of player. I’m a big fan of Madrigal, and believe in the upside, but I’d be remiss to not mention the downside. Here’s some other players of note in MiLB.

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