With Javier Baez lost for the year — *pours out a bottle of Johnson & Johnson baby oil for the sexy one we lost* — the Cubs called up shortstop, Nico Hoerner (3-for-5, 2 runs, 4 RBIs). And the internet exploded. Everywhere I looked for a good 45 minutes (long in internet minutes), I saw things about Nico Hoerner. “Reinforcements on the way!” one Chicago sportswriter announced exuberantly.  Another exclaimed, “Hoerner is here to save the season!” A third declared they were, “Hoernier than ever,” though they might’ve just typed a search term into their tweet. Then I looked at Hoerner’s Double-A numbers — 3 HRs, 8 SBs, .284 in 70 games — and I giggled a little. Hoerner is the Cubs’ top prospect, which is more of an indictment about the Cubs’ farm system. He doesn’t strike out, and possesses decent on-base skills, so maybe some short-term value. He should play short since karma knocked Addison Russell in the head and Baez is out, even if Ben Zobrist is playing after just recovering from a five-month divorce, which was initiated because his wife was jealous of how much Maddon loves him. You can cyclops Hoerner or try him, but him or, say, Starlin Castro? Semper Fidelis Castro. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The minor league season is winding down and so is my time here at Razzball. Indians prospect Yu Chang (3-for-5) blasted a pair of homers Friday night – his eighth and ninth dingers on the season. It’s been a disappointing year for Chang, mainly because he has above average power and yet hasn’t taken advantage of the homer happy Triple-A environment. You’re probably asking why I’m leading with him. Here’s why – prospect fatigue. Chances are a guy in your dynasty league is sick of Chang and is willing to sell him at a discount – believing he won’t amount to anything but a Quad-A type. But Chang is just two years removed from a 24-homer, 11-steal season at Double-A and his plate discipline is in line with his other MiLB years. Chang is now 24, and that’s another reason owners might be ready to give up. I’d be willing to take a flyer on him at the right price and hope I run into another Aquino or something even remotely similar. Here’s what else is happening around the minor leagues…

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I was going to call this series the prospect power rankings, but I decided it’s not really helpful to rank players when we all have different specific needs for our teams. What this monthly article will (try) to do is identify prospects in the minor leagues that you should be tracking and possibly even acquiring because they are close to the majors. April is a tricky month to project. This is because many of the prospects that were worthy of a call to the majors broke camp with their respective teams. On the other hand, it’s quite early for the remaining specs in the minors to get promoted, and the minor league season doesn’t even start until Thursday. To make the jump in the next three weeks, a prospect is either; (a) having their service time molested; or (b) replacing an injured/crappy player on the roster. That said, I do think there are a few prospects that could be up this month.

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It’s chucking down snow in my neck of the woods. Perfect time to hole up and make a list of the top 100 prospects for 2019 fantasy baseball. Before we begin…an observation. The roads are empty around here except for pizza delivery cars. Ordering a pizza in a blizzard seems like a dick move to me. So I’m dedicating this post to the real heroes – the pizza delivery boys and girls braving a foot of snow in their crappy car to make sure Edna has her half-pepperoni, half-bell pepper medium pie while she watches reruns of Friends on Netflix. Moving on, if you’re just tuning into this station, we’ve already gone over the top 25 prospects for 2019 fantasy baseball as well as the top 50 prospects for 2019 fantasy baseball. For thoughts on every player and to see each team’s top ten prospects, visit our 2019 minor league preview index. Concerning these players listed below, my goal when drafting/picking up one of them is to net some sort of positive value and see them playing regularly. Essentially, this final group is composed of players with 50ish overall ratings on the scouting scale…not your superstars or even All-Stars, but a decent shot to carve out a career in the big leagues.

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It’s Thanksgiving Eve! After New Year’s, this is my favorite amateur hour for drunkards. No Karen, you shouldn’t take nine Fireball shots at Buffalo Wild Wings just because you have a four-day weekend…you need to be up bright and early to watch the people lip syncing show tunes in the cold. It’s only fitting that on this magical holiday we celebrate the minor league system of the Indians. According to my history textbook, Christopher Columbus flew to Newark in 1962. There, he met the Indians and together they shared a fantastic feast of pork roll and cheese and that’s why we trample each other for video game consoles today. In what’s easily the biggest move of the baseball offseason, the Indians of Cleveland have non-tendered Chief Wahoo, who coincidentally organized that original Thanksgiving feast but apparently was also an extreme racist. It’s about time the Tribe cut ties with the image of that awful man. Here’s Cleveland’s top ten fantasy prospects according to Mike, a man who knows very little but tries very much.

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Last night, MLB streamed the Arizona Fall League equivalent of an All-Star Game. In a cunning twist, it’s named the Fall Star Game. The game ended too late for a recap, so this is a preview of a game that has already been played. Welcome to time travel. I’d explain the intricacies of writing in the present about something in the future that will publish in the future about something that happened in the past, but it’s a bit complicated. All I’ll say is it requires weapons-grade plutonium, an internet connection, and a fifth of Dewar’s. The player I’m most excited to see is Keston Hiura (2B), the Brew Crew’s top prospect with the 70 hit tool. He’s kicking keisters in the AFL, hitting .343 with four bombs, five steals, and 27 runs batted in (the league lead). Here are a few other prospects I’m scoping out tonight (last night) in the Fall Stars Game… 

Please, blog, may I have some more?