For a couple nights this week, I drafted prospects with prospectors. Or against prospectors? Both, I suppose. Appreciated the invite from Scott White at CBS, who allowed me to come back and defend my crown from last year’s prospect mocks. That’s a joke. Not a funny one, sorry to say. Nobody wins a mock draft, let alone a prospect mock. 

Except me, this time, when I absolutely housed this thing.


It’s irrelevant.

But I was happy to be back. 

Our Tuesday night rotisserie draft for dynasty leagues went a little something like this: 

1) Chris Towers: SS Wander Franco 

2) Ralph Lifshitz: OF Jarred Kelenic 

3) Chris Clegg: SS Marco Luciano 

4) Phil Ponebshek: 3B Spencer Torkelson

5) Nick Mimikos: C Adley Rutschman

6) The Welsh: OF Julio Rodriguez 

7) Frank Stampfl: LHP MacKenzie Gore

8) Ray Butler: OF Kristian Robinson 

9) The Itch: OF Randy Arozarena 

10) Nick Ritrivi: SS Bobby Witt

11) Eric Cross: SS CJ Abrams 

12) Scott White: 1B Andrew Vaughn 

First thing’s first, I goofed. My top 100 is simmering, and Randy Arozarena is elbowing through the noise safely inside the top five, but I should’ve tested the room to see if anyone would take him on the turn. I’m betting no, allowing me to land CJ Abrams and Arozarena rather than just one of my top three players at the moment. I rectified this error on Thursday night’s draft, landing Abrams first and Arozarena second to verify the terrible mistake I’d made here. 

Nice value on Abrams if your start-up goes like this. Seems pretty high for Gore at the moment. 


Round 2 

13) SW: RHP Ian Anderson

14) EC: OF Dylan Carlson 

15) NR: OF Jasson Dominguez

16) Itch: OF Corbin Carroll

17) RB: SS Royce Lewis 

18) FS: SS Austin Martin

19) TW: OF Alex Kirilloff

20) NM: OF Cristian Pache

21) PP: RHP Sixto Sanchez

22) CC: 1B Triston Casas

23) RL: 3B Ke’Bryan Hayes

24) CT: RHP Michael Kopech

Triston Casas has been flying up lists due in part to an anchoring fallacy with Vaughn and Torkelson, as far as I can tell. No offense to Casas, who’s an excellent corner bat prospect, but he doesn’t have the hit tool, track record, floor or resale value of the other two. 

I might’ve taken Dominguez if he’d made it to 16, but he’s the only guy in this group I’d even consider over Carroll, whose topside (something like .300/.400/.500, 20 HR, 40 SB) would make him a perennial fixture in the first round of 5×5 leagues. 

I suppose you could say something similar in a power/speed sense about Ray Butler’s pick of Royce Lewis, but only if you ignore how difficult it’s been for him to make contact. 


Round 3

25) Chris Towers: RHP Nate Pearson

26) Ralph Lifshitz: OF Riley Greene

27) Chris Clegg: SS Noelvi Marte

28) Phil Ponebshek: 2B Vidal Brujan

29) Nick Mimikos: RHP Logan Gilbert

30) The Welsh: SS Nick Gonzales

31) Frank Stampfl: RHP Matt Manning

32) Ray Butler: OF Brennen Davis

33) The Itch: OF Hedbert Perez

34) Nick Ritrivi: OF Zac Veen

35) Eric Cross: 3B Jordan Groshans

36) Scott White: 2B Nick Madrigal 

Is this group better than round 2 on the whole?

If you swap out the bottom two here for the top two in round four, I think it is. 

We’re splitting hairs between prospects 13-24 and 25-36, but I found it interesting nonetheless. I’m sure my brain is simply stuck on Kopech, Casas, Pache, Lewis and Martin, who I just wouldn’t take near the top 25. Probably wouldn’t take Anderson either given how many speed+hit+power types are left on the board. 

Vidal Brujan at 28 and Brennen Davis at 32 feel like excellent values. 

Groshans is a borderline top 100 guy for me popped by Cross at 35. He’s played 73 total games in 2.5 seasons since being drafted in 2018. 


Round 4

37) SW: SS Jeter Downs

38) EC: OF Trevor Larnach 

39) NR: OF Alek Thomas

40) Itch: OF Luis Matos

41) RB: RHP Casey Mize

42) FS: 3B Nolan Jones

43) TW: 2B Ha-Seong Kim

44) NM: LHP Asa Lacy

45) PP: 3B Nolan Gorman

46) CC: OF Brandon Marsh

47) RL: OF JJ Bleday

48) CT: C Joey Bart 

So here we find Luis Matos and 11 players I’m unlikely to own. I like Downs and Larnach enough, but Larnach loses some appeal in a start-up roto setting, where I want to make sure I have enough speed to potentially sell before I start targeting three-category power types. I do think Larnach can hold his own in batting average, but he’s unlikely to help a whole lot there. 

I’ve been appreciating Rich Wilson’s work for a long time, but man it’s tough to hear him keep calling Lacy “Acey.” He’s convinced himself Acey is Lacy’s given name at this point. Acey Lacy. Dude says it like nine times an episode in between comparing every other prospect to Bo Bichette, which is basically the only time I’d ever take a pitcher this high in a roto dynasty: he hits like Bo Bichette and his given name is Acey. 

If you’re considering drafting Joey Bart inside the top fifty, give yourself a quick flick on the tip of your nose, or some other equally sensitive area that can snap you out of whatever madness makes this kind of thing happen. It’s a 12-team league. His carrying tool at this point is probably defense. 


Round 5

49) Chris Towers: LHP Tarik Skubal

50) Ralph Lifshitz: RHP Max Meyer

51) Chris Clegg: RHP Luis Patino

52) Phil Ponebshek: RHP Forrest Whitley

53) Nick Mimikos: OF Hunter Bishop

54) The Welsh: OF Erick Pena

55) Frank Stampfl: OF Drew Waters

56) Ray Butler: RHP Grayson Rodriguez

57) The Itch: OF Leody Taveras

58) Nick Ritrivi: RHP Spencer Howard

59) Eric Cross: OF Garrett Mitchell

60) Scott White: RHP Triston McKenzie 

The moment after my fifth round click, I thought I’d screwed up and cheated here. At first glance, Leody checks in just 11 ticks under the typical prospect requirements with 119 MLB at bats. But next moment, I remembered CBS is using MLB’s wonky rookie eligibility rules and scrambled to decipher his call-up date: July 24, well before the August 14 cutoff. Then I saw he was only up for a day, so he’s still under the service time limbo stick, I think. Who the hell really knows at this point though. 

Should perhaps note that this draft is chaos. We are not looking at a list of prospects, of course. It’s just the regular draft room. And it’s finicky as hell. Like ten clicks minimum to queue one player. So if anyone makes an odd selection or two in the service of jumping in half-prepped to help Scott, a very nice human in my experience, that’s totally understandable in my book. 

Spencer Howard won’t make my top 100. Arm fatigue, lost velocity, lack of upper minors experience, and a tricky home park in a heated division all work against him.

Round 6

61) Scott White: OF Ryan Mountcastle

62) Eric Cross: RHP Emerson Hancock

63) Nick Ritrivi:OF Austin Hendrick

64) The Itch: RHP George Kirby

65) Ray Butler: OF Taylor Trammell

66) Frank Stampfl: 2B Jazz Chisholm

67) The Welsh: OF George Valera

68) Nick Mimikos: 3B Josh Jung

69) Phil Ponebshek: RHP Hans Crouse

70) Chris Clegg: RHP Edward Cabrera

71) Ralph Lifshitz: SS Tyler Freeman

72) Chris Towers: SS Oneil Cruz

As much as I like Kirby, I might’ve dropped the ball here in missing Freeman and Cruz. I do think Kirby has more trade value today given the moves I’ve seen for him this winter, and even if you’re not selling him, he’s got as enticing a floor/topside combination as any pitching prospect. Still, he’s an uncomfortable click for me here. I’d probably put him on the market immediately if this league were running for real, just to see what sorts of young veteran bats he might bring back. 

Trammell’s not a top 100 player for me. In my opinion, he thrived on being more physically developed than his same-age peers in the lower minors and hasn’t developed premium baseball skill, especially in the batter’s box. No idea how he earns playing time in that loaded outfield. Could be on his fourth organization in three years if Seattle makes a similar judgment and can get decent value in return. 

I have no idea what’s going on with Hans Crouse here. Texas hasn’t produced a fantasy relevant pitcher since the weirdness that was CJ Wilson coming out of relief and Colby Lewis coming back from Japan. Like Ted Lasso says, I’m curious and trying to keep an open mind, but this is a back-end 2nd round pick out of high school in 2017 who struck out 7.8 batters per nine in A ball in 2019, allowing a 4.41 ERA and across 87.2 innings after starting five games at the level to close 2018. Maybe he added like five miles per hour at the training site or something.

Round 7 

73) Chris Towers: 2B Xavier Edwards

74) Ralph Lifshitz: LHP DL Hall

75) Chris Clegg: 2B Aaron Bracho

76) Phil Ponebshek: LHP Daniel Lynch

77) Nick Mimikos: RHP Hunter Greene

78) The Welsh: SS Cristian Hernandez

79) Frank Stampfl: OF Heliot Ramos

80) Ray Butler: SS Jose Garcia

81) The Itch: OF Gilberto Jimenez

82) Nick Ritrivi: LHP Matthew Liberatore

83) Eric Cross: LHP Nick Lodolo

84) Scott White: SS Orelvis Martinez

Scott with a great get this late. Good chance Orelivs Martinez is a fairly consensus top 25 type by the end of 2021. 

I ranked Gilberto 41st on my first top 100 in October of 2019. Psyched to get him here after reading and hearing glowing reports about his power progress at the sties this season.

Solid gambles for The Welsh in the international class. He’ll snag Wilman Diaz in round 9, too. I was playing a kind of wait-and-see with all the players who weren’t in the database. I always struggle with that extra aspect of CBS strategy. I jumped into a CBS dynasty a couple years ago mid April because some dude quit two weeks into the season and wound up holding filler/fake player avatars for Wander Franco, Kristian Robinson, Luis Matos and more because these guys I wanted were not in the player pool. Commish required that you pick your player up when CBS added his actual avatar to the pool, so the league knew these create-a-player, hold-a-spot assets were only partially real. Someone else did snag Wander when he came into the database and was nice enough to send him my way. I didn’t know I would’ve forfeited my rights by not adding him during the first faab run I could’ve. Figured I was just supposed to notice it when I noticed it. Wild setup. Wound up requesting (clicking the box to get) an email for every player-pool update. I liked the anticipation of opening one. Wild league in general. Two dudes quit after I joined because I got ripped off sending Taillon, Kingery and something else I can’t recall for Fernando Tatis then ripped off even worse when I sent Yu Darvish for then-A-leaguer Juan Soto. To be fair, I made a lot of aggressive trades, they were all future-focused, and they didn’t all go my way. I can see why they were frustrated. 

I won the league my second season. My first full season. 

The league dissolved as it was happening. 

Real bummer. I learned a lot. Some trades are not worth the turmoil they’ll cause. Or maybe they are hell I dunno. 

One guy quit because I traded Nate Pearson for Mitch Haniger

Like, he thought I was ripping the Haniger owner off so badly, he quit the league. 

Haniger had been bad that season. Then the testicle thing happened. 

I miss that team. 

Sorry, where were we?

Ah, that’s right! The Ocho!


Round 8

85) Scott White: SS Carlos Colmenarez

86) Eric Cross: OF Heston Kjerstad

87) Nick Ritrivi:SS Ronny Mauricio

88) The Itch: LHP Brailyn Marquez

89) Ray Butler: LHP AJ Puk

90) Frank Stampfl: SS Robert Puason

91) The Welsh: LHP Garrett Crochet

92) Nick Mimikos: RHP Daniel Espino

93) Phil Ponebshek: SS Geraldo Perdomo

94) Chris Clegg: OF Jarren Duran

95) Ralph Lifshitz: RHP Simeon Woods Richardson

96) Chris Towers: LHP Trevor Rogers

Kjerstad is the pick of the round, I suspect, by this time next year. Probably goes higher if he’s in the database. 

Marquez makes two pitchers for team Itch, both who fell a fair bit below what I perceive to be their market value, and both with fantasy star topside. 

I don’t much like Mauricio, but 87 in a start-up would represent solid value. 

Similar thoughts on Puason and Duran. Not my favorite dudes to this point, but I’m intrigued by Duran’s swing change, and Puason’s physical gifts will always warrant our attention. 

Crochet could be a monster here. Might take him over Marquez if the rounds were live.


Round 9

97) Chris Towers: C Sam Huff

98) Ralph Lifshitz: OF Josh Lowe

99) Chris Clegg: RHP Clarke Schmidt

100) Phil Ponebshek: RHP JB Bukauskas

101) Nick Mimikos: OF Jordyn Adams

102) The Welsh: SS Wilman Diaz

103) Frank Stampfl: RHP Josiah Gray

104) Ray Butler: 1B Lewin Diaz

105) The Itch: OF Heriberto Hernandez

106) Nick Ritrivi: OF Robert Hassell

107) Eric Cross: SS Ed Howard

108) Scott White: C Luis Campusano

Bukauskas is a head-scratcher for me. Getting late in the draft, it’s a mock so no big whoop, but I’m gonna have to get curious like Lasso on that one because it came out of left field for me. 

I like most of these picks, though I’m not real into Schmidt. Fine value here anyway. 


Round 10 

109) Scott White: 3B Jonathan India

110) Eric Cross: OF Hudson Head

111) Nick Ritrivi:1B Seth Beer

112) The Itch: C Francisco Alvarez

113) Ray Butler: OF Jesus Sanchez

114) Frank Stampfl: RHP Deivi Garcia

115) The Welsh: RHP Mick Abel

116) Nick Mimikos: OF Travis Swaggerty

117) Phil Ponebshek: SS Greg Jones

118) Chris Clegg: 1B Michael Toglia

119) Ralph Lifshitz: SS Gunnar Henderson

120) Chris Towers: 1B Bobby Dalbec

Alvarez is easily the best player from this group. Not bragging. Again, it’s a mock, nobody cares, but it’s odd to me that he lasted this long. I know I said I don’t want your catching prospects, but this guy is elite. 

Head gets an interesting new lease on life in Pittsburgh. In theory, he could race to the big leagues. In practice, he might not have enough structural help to make that happen. 

I like Greg Jones. Doesn’t have to be a great hitter to be a great roto player. Plenty of speed, power and plate discipline to float the profile. 

Toglia feels like a sharp pick on the cusp of a possible firesale and full rebuild. Gotta unclog the system to bring some flow back to the body. 

This felt weird, as an article. Hope it worked for you!

Thanks for reading!

I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter.

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Moon Shots
Moon Shots
1 year ago

Hiya Itch,

I really look forward to your articles and this was very fun. Your insight is a great influence for my rebuild project in my 30-team dynasty.

One thing I’ve noticed is that don’t mind deviating pretty sharply from the industry standard on guys and ranking guys a lot higher before they hit a ton of helium in the mainstream. I have based some trades partially on this feature of your writing, going out and getting Luis Matos and Hedbert Perez, for example. I think ive noticed similar valuation of Heriberto Hernandez and a few other guys as well.

As such i’m curious if there are a handful of guys you think are way undervalued in the industry and make good buy lows now before they catch fire, apart from the ones i mentioned? I’m gearing up to start sending off pre-season trade offers and any thoughts on this are much appreciated. I also am holding a few prospects who get ranked highly but maybe are losing some steam and might make for good sell candidates in these scenarios (Drew Waters perhaps).

Thanks Itch!

1 year ago

Thank you for addressing Rich’s issue with calling Asa Lacy “Acey”. I like his podcasts, but his pronunciations can be tough to handle. Joey “Cantilla” is another one that comes to mind.

Powdered Toast Man
Powdered Toast Man
1 year ago

My AL Only farm system – I went heavy SS the last few years. Keep forever league so these guys may get dealt.

Wander Franco
Julio Rodríguez
Orelvis Martinez
Noveli Marte
Robert Pauson

Braves UK
Braves UK
1 year ago

Thanks Itch, love this stuff!!

Any chance you will be doing a top 100 (or even 200?!) overall prospects?

More specifically where would Luis Matos sit in that top 100?

Another Dan
Another Dan
1 year ago

Hey Itch,

I like the content, thanks for your stuff. The commentary is invaluable.

I’m looking at that draft and thinking my trade for Abrams feels much better. In my 30btm dynasty. I sent Pena, Josh Lowe and Alejandro Pie plus a 3rd round pick (70ish) in Amateur draft (not International) for Abrams and John Means.

Interested in Puk. Been talking to a guy about acquiring him because I lack pitching. But the concerns about his injuries seems to have affected his stock. Thoughts on him? (our P cats are QS, SV, HLDS, WHIP, FIP and K%)

Best wishes,

Another Dan

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
1 year ago

This is really good stuff Itch. Very interesting to see how you and others drafterd.

Love the insight you give and the way you value some guys, especially over pitching and catchers. A lot of what you say is common sense stuff that is not always expressed and can go unnoticed. Interesting, I thought you had gone too high on Arozarena but you made up for it the second time around. Smart thinking.

I thought Kirby was a decent pick. I didn’t care for the Leodys pick. Overall, I thought you did well.

One Side Note:

Haniger was kicking ass when you traded for him.

Indeed, his batting average sucked at .220, but his 15 HR, 32 RBIs, 46 Runs and 4 SBs in 63 games was pretty damn good and I’m quite sure the reason for your league mate’s sudden departure.

Those numbers prorate out to a full season line of 39 HR, 82 RBIs, 118 Runs and 10 SB. Yeah, it’s safe to say your ripped that guy off prior to the injury.

I know all about Haniger because I owned him in multiple league and he was destroying the ball every time he actually connected, driving in runs and scoring runs. He was hitting his prime.

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
Reply to  The Itch
1 year ago

Oh as it played out, he got the better end of the deal. Haniger has been worthless since June of 2019 while at least Pearson plays lol.

That’s a good example of why you never judge a trade immediately. Let it play out. It’s amazing how so many “ripoff” trades turn out to go the other way or end up close to balanced.

Also, you ripped them off for Acuna and Soto. No denying that either.

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
Reply to  Harley Earl
1 year ago

What I was trying to say was that at the time the trade was made, you clearly ripped the guy off. Haniger was in beast mode but it was slightly hidden due to a low batting average. The guy was on pace for 40 bombs!

1 year ago

The Welsh killed that draft

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
Reply to  C
1 year ago

Man, the first 6 rounds, he absolutely dominated. Nobody came close to what he did. Great draft for him.

Reply to  The Itch
1 year ago

true. But I absolutely love JRod and I think Valera is drastically undervalued. The speed component could be an issue, but it’s an issue in fantasy baseball generally. I sort of feel he got the highest upside guys in rounds 6-9.

Reply to  C
1 year ago

but i realy like your draft, too, Itch. Well done!

Donna G. Ellaby
Donna G. Ellaby
1 year ago

The one player from the 2020 amateur draft who seems to have gone into the Witness Protection Program is Austin Martin. Never a word written about him after Toronto drafted him … no words on him this off-season. Just ….silencio. For a guy who was always rated 1-2 in the ’20 Draft …even tho he slipped to #5 … seems very odd. And now he slides halfway down your 2nd round of prospects. What’s the story on him ? Did he ever have Covid ? How did he perform at Adjacent Camp or whatever it was called last summer ? Inquiring minds …..

Jolt In Flow
Jolt In Flow
1 year ago

Hey Itch, I hope the new year’s treated you well. I’m getting back into my coffee and Itch Sunday mornings.

Was fun going through this list. Question: any thoughts on Quinn Priester (RHP – Prirates)? MLB put him at 52.

Do you feel he should have made the 10 round draft on someone’s roster (ex. Kick Joey Bart for this guy)?

PS. Any outside the box articles you’re working on in the future (such as this one)?

Thanks Itch,


Jolt In Flow
Jolt In Flow
Reply to  The Itch
1 year ago


Can’t wait.


1 year ago

Nitty gritty keeper time. Keep 10 no contracts. 12 team h2h, 6×6 OBP. Kyle Lewis, Alec Bohm or Corbin Burnses? Which ONE gets sent home?

1 year ago

Hey Itch one these pitchers one has to go! Deivi-Schmidt-Houck-Hunter Greene-Lodolo-Cabrera-Kirby? 20 team dynasty 5×5…thank you!

1 year ago

Great column! Always look forward to reading your stuff! How would you rank these SS for a 20 team dynasty 5×5?…Adames-Groshans-Jose Garcia-Perdomo…you also mentioned you were not that high on Clarke Schmidt…I know he got blown up last year, but last year was strange to say the least! Thanks for the great work!

Reply to  The Itch
1 year ago

Defense gets you PT, which matters for fantasy. Perdomo definitely has speed and a willingness to steal…if he sures up his decision making on the basepaths and I am extremely confused why a guy that harps on speed so much wouldn’t want him in 5×5 because he will steal, get runs, and hit for a well above league avg….RBIs are more situational…but why have Groshans, who has absolutely no base stealing ability, less speed acumen, and has not shown any power himself yet, ahead of him…especially considering Arizona kept Perdomo over Chisolm and is lined up for PT while Groshans is blocked heavily? Also Perdomo got at least a taste of high A at the same age (well, 19 days older) and continued to walk more than K and test the bases? Perdomo is seeming criminally underrated in general, but I prefer his ceiling/career potential to the others…was never a fan of Adames, Perdomo could easily come into power later like Willy and many others do (though Adames does not have much, nor does anything on the basepaths).

Tim Anderson Project
Tim Anderson Project
1 year ago


Whats your take on C Pache…Short term and long term?

1 year ago

In my 14 team h2h dynasty league we need to cut our team down to 27 players prior to our rookie/fa draft. I am currently at 37 players. Which 10 players do I drop to get me down to 27? My players are below.

ronald acuna
juan soto
bo bichette
ozzie albies
rafael devers
luke voit
max muncy
austin meadows
mike yastrzemski
yuli gurriel
omar narvaez
robert puason
erick pena
andrew vaughn
aaron bracho
luis matos
julio rodriguez
jeter downs

max scherzer
brandon woodruff
julio urias
ryan pressly
sixto sanchez
patrick corbin
nathan eovaldi
elieser hernandez
brandon kintzler
blake taylor
garrett crochet
antonio senzatela
deivi garcia
daniel espino
george kirby
edward cabrera
carlos rodon
luis patino
jon gray

Member Berries
Member Berries
Reply to  The Itch
1 year ago

This guy asking everyone the same question as if he couldn’t keep 10 total and still be the favorite.

Redraft your league, too imbalanced