Please see our player page for Brice Turang 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.

The Brewers system is pretty much Hiura and then everybody else. It’s kind of like how there is Blatz beer, and then everything else. Can I use my powers as an internet blogger – whose words reach tens of people – to say something slightly controversial? *whispers* I don’t get the craft beer thing. I mean, I understand micro-brewing and that, but when did we start talking about beer like it’s wine with “notes” and such? I guess I’m a reverse beer snob. I stick to the classics. Hamm’s, Carling Black Label, Genesee, and, if I’m feeling extra fancy, Miller High Life. If you’re a craft beer guy or gal…cheers to you. Just remember stubborn old farts like me are still out there when you’re stocking up for your next party. Rant over. Back to baseball…

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Happy holidays! For your present this year, I’m pushing out the Top 50 First Year Player Prospects. I chose those words precisely because rankings to me are like childbirth. Painful. Everybody wants to see. And then your in-laws complain about the name you picked out. Wonderful! For reals though, these specs are the most unsurest of an unsure bunch, so tiers are chunked in tens. I won’t put up much of a fuss within tiers, but if you want to talk about a player being in the wrong tier altogether, I think that’s a discussion worth having. I’ve already gone over my Top 10 First Year Player Prospects, and in that intro I talked a little about where my head’s at when I do these. (Insert “up my ass” joke here). Enjoy!

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All the leagues are in full swing and the Razzball Prospect Podcast has updates on all the happenings in minor league baseball this week. With a ton of promotions by the Braves, Dodgers, and Red Sox, as well as an interesting trio of shortstops from June’s draft moving up, we touch on them all. Plus scouting looks on Eloy Jimenez, Gabriel Arias, Luis Patino, and more. We jump into our five by five highlighting ten players on our radar. Names like the Dodgers Miguel Vargas, the Reds Jonathan India, the Red Sox Bobby Dalbec, and slew of others. As always head over to Rotowear.com and use our promo-code SAGNOF to get 20% off Rotowear ‘s amazing shirts!

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Every so often, actually, this is baseball, so, all the time, we are blessed with an 80 grade name. One birthed from flames, and ready to provide Rudy Gamble with endless puns. One such name is the Phillies right-hander Adonis Medina’s. The athletic right-hander ranked 107th overall in my recent Top 500, and was the 25th overall pitcher. Don’t forget I faded pitching in this year’s ranks. The subject of trade rumors over the All-Star break, while the Phillies were still in the Manny Machado hunt, Medina has been up and down this season. Though a quick glance at his 64% LOB%, and the fact that 26 of his 39 runs allowed have come in just 4 starts, and it’s easy to see his ERA is quite deceiving. In fact, in ten of those sixteen starts Medina has gone 5 or more and allowed 2 or less runs. But it’s not the numbers that should sell you on Medina, it’s the stuff. Blessed with three above-average to plus pitches, Medina has the ability to carve-up a lineup with very little use of his mid-90s fastball, and that’s exactly what Medina did on Saturday night. Prospector in arms Jason Woodell was in the building, and tweeted some seriously tantalizing updates on Medina’s game. He was working 93-95 on the fastball, before abandoning it the third time through the order to dice up the Fire Frogs (Braves A+) lineup with his low 80s slider, and mid-high 80s changeup. Jason has given Medina 60s on all three pitches. This combination of stuff, and feel for multiple above average to plus pitches gives Medina the ability to thrive one day at the big league level. If I was to re-rank my top 500 today, I’d likely bump Medina into the top 20 starters. Here’s some of Jason’s excellent video work, that really captures how talented Medina is.

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.

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Draft talk is finally here, and I for one could not be more excited about it. There’s no point in the year where we’re more inundated with new prospects, and sexy new skillsets to dream on. Hope springs eternal in MLB draft-land, not only for real life teams, but for all y’all fantasy squads as well. Yes, I just used the phrase all y’all. It’s important to remain folksy in the face of privilege. Never mind that, we’re talking the top hitters in this year’s draft class. We go through all the big names from Alec Bohm to Nick Madrigal to Nolan Gorman, Jarred Kelenic, and Jonathan India. Of course we start the show off with some Vlad Jr. talk, and our usual 5×5, highlighting some top players over the last week in MiLB. Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor 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:

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