This rundown has been difficult to write because I have little confidence in this club’s ability to develop its players, so even as we have plenty of reasons to be interested in several names on the list, we have more reasons to doubt than invest.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Please see our player page for Bryson Stott 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 Kansas City Royals can’t catch a break this year. Between Jorge Soler and Hunter Dozier slumping and Adalberto Mondesi hurting and all the pitching prospects fumbling their first big chance, it’s all the Royals can do to put on a brave face and wave for their adoring public.
Things seemed to take a turn for the better this week, with Ryan O’Hearn carrying his AAA fire over from Omaha and Emmanuel Rivera going 2-for-4 in his big league debut. But then, in his second game, Rivera took just one at bat before being removed due to wrist pain. No word yet on the severity, but wrist pain is bad for hitting. It’s a pretty irritating outcome. Rivera’s been hot all year as the Royals rolled out the corpse of Kelvin Gutierrez at third base. Can get fairly redundant watching this happen over and over again: teams drag their feet on promotions and miss their windows. Edward Olivares is still demolishing AAA while Nick Pratto and Bobby Witt do the same at AA. Royals could’ve had a whole new wave in mid May and be breathing fire by July. And maybe they would have if the young pitchers had played well. But hey their AA club won 19-to-4 on Tuesday, so they’ve got that going for them.
Here’s what else I’ve been seeing around the game.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Floundering at the big league level despite fanatical off-season spending, the Phillies could really use a boost from their farm system in 2021. Who couldn’t, right? But whereas some teams are so deep their prospects have to join the queue when they’re big league ready, Philadelphia is a land of opportunity for youngsters. Without a minor league season, the club was forced to promote several players with little to no experience in the upper minors: Spencer Howard, Alec Bohm, Rafael Marchan, and former #1 pick Mickey Moniak. I’m eager to see how 2021 plays out for everyone in the game who saw aggressive assignments and whether or not the results impact future processes. Hell I’m just eager to see minor league baseball again, but this season tossed so many variables into the equation that the game might feel ripples forever. 2021 feels incredibly important for the Phillies. They’ve demoted General Manager Matt Klentak and appointed Ned Rice in the interim. Jim Hendry was floated as a possible replacement by Jon Heyman (truckful of salt, I know), and I’d like to see Hendry get another chance after he loaded up the Cubs just before Theo Epstein came aboard. Feels like Girardi might have the loudest voice in the room, which feels like a net positive for an organization that hasn’t made the playoffs in 19 years.Please, blog, may I have some more?
One problem with evaluating Phillies prospects is reading. Sorry, Reading, the AA level, is one of the issues. Double A is typically the preferred level for anyone trying to get a read/handle on what a player could become. Josh Stephen is a decent example. As a 21-year-old outfielder in AA, he posted a 140 wRC+. Normally this puts up a “follow-me” flag. And Stephen does deserve some eyeballs as he heads into AAA at 22. But so what if he hits there? He didn’t hit in High-A Clearwater. By which I mean he skipped the level after not hitting in class A Lakewood (82 wRC+). Didn’t hit in Low A either (91 wRC+).
So what do we know about Stephen after four years in the system? That maybe he doesn’t have enough bat to carry the profile? I don’t think we can really say that about a guy who was always young for his level. To make matters better, he’s rule 5 draft eligible next December, so they’re running out of time before they could lose him. And now he’s headed for the juicy AAA balls, assuming they’re still juicy.
It’s not all bad news though. Pitchers go through this same crucible, and though it’s not the easiest path to value (see Adonis Medina’s 2019 stock movement), it might produce extremely resilient prospects, and I’m not sure there’s a more important aspect of making a living on the mound.Please, blog, may I have some more?
If you’re a fan of a baseball team, chances are good at least one of your team’s coaches got fired this week. Maybe even the manager. Eleven Major League clubs don’t have one today.
And if you’re a fan of HBO’s Succession, you’ve been promised a “blood sacrifice” tonight.
This landscape littered with scapegoats is, ironically enough, a land of opportunity. Management wants to get young players on the field for extra cap-feathers on evaluation day. Look no further than San Diego, where Fernando Tatis and Chris Paddack may have saved A.J. Preller from a moment on the chopping block even though everyone else got canned.
All that is to say, even with service-time suppression suffocating our game, kids like these in the Top 150 can still come quick.Please, blog, may I have some more?
We’re back in the saddle and ready to get you up to speed on all the top names in Monday’s MLB Draft. We talk Adely Rutschman, Andrew Vaughn, Bobby Witt Jr., J.J. Bleday, Riley Greene and others. We give you the lowdown on the real life value versus fantasy of each draftee, and tell you which player we feel can be the top fantasy asset from this draft. If you’re a dynasty addict, then you don’t want to miss this one. We end the show touching on a handful of pitchers that have our interest at the moment. It’s the latest episode of the Razzball Prospect Podcast.Please, blog, may I have some more?