Trade Deadline Edition: Top 10 Minor League Hitters to Stash
Trade deadline week has been Crazy-Go-Nuts this year, and boy am I loving it. A few prospects on this list have had some changes of fortune with all the winds of trade. Once the dust settles, there may be plenty of promotions in order.
There’s only been good news for Corey Seager compared to last week’s edition, in that A. He is no longer sick and B. His top competition for playing time, Hector Olivera, has been traded, or so it seems this will be the case at the time of writing. It’s not perfect in that in this trade would bring in Peraza who can also play second and an emergency shortstop, but it seems more likely he’ll be in the outfield. We’ll have to wait and see how things shake out but it seems that if Seager will get the call, now would be the time.
– Olivera was previously in a most unusual logjam but now that he has been traded, he will likely play in the majors as soon as he can prove his health. Granted, with his history, that’s easier said than done. While he will have far fewer run-scoring opportunities, he may get a better spot in the lineup and more playing time to even things out.
– Reed has shown how much difference a week makes in looking at rate stats over a small sample size. He has hit 3 longballs over the past week, but his strikeout rate has soared from 15% to 27.9% in 68 PA, and his AVG went down 40 points to .293. After 4 straight games without a single K, he’s gotten a golden sombrero (4 Ks), 2 golden tricornes (3 Ks), and 2 golden bicornes (I think you get the idea) in his last 6 games. Still on the season, he’s hitting .338 with 27 Homers, which is pretty darn good. I still think there’s a far, not good, but fair chance of him getting promoted if Singleton and Carter don’t get hot soon (Update: Singleton just got demoted), and Reed can stop getting golden hats. After all this is baseball, not Team Fortress 2.
– Well, Tulo finally got traded. But, in a M. Night Shyamalan-esque twist, Story did not get the call, but rather Christian Adames. While neither of them have glowing scouting reports, Story has much better numbers than Adames and is the better long-term bet. With that said, this may be an indication that the out-of-contention Rockies would rather let Story finish his campaign and save the team future money, which is probably smart for his real owners but sad for his fantasy owners. But I haven’t given up hope on that yet.
– Peraza just got shipped out to the Dodgers, which isn’t necessarily good for his fantasy value. But considering he wasn’t getting an opportunity anyway, it’s not necessarily bad, either. If he stays on the Dodgers, it’s unlikely that he’ll become a starter if he couldn’t get that on the offensively inferior Braves, but I can see them employing him as a super-utility guy and pinch runner. They have the cash to not worry about his contract and use him for his greatest strength, and perhaps he’ll run more when it’s his sole purpose. If you’re in need for speed and not much else, Peraza’s worth a speculative stash right now.
– Shaffer has slowly lost momentum as was to be expected. He’s in a mini-slump, with one hit, a double, in his last 18 ABs. It at least appears that the Rays are holding steady so Shaffer might not get an opportunity if he couldn’t get it while he was tearing the cover off the ball.
– Turner has cooled off, and he’s just as blocked as he was before. But he could still carve out some At-bats in a super-utility role or get a stint if someone goes down. While he hasn’t played anything but shortstop in the minors, he still may be able to cover another infield position in a pinch.
Mazara is probably relieved to see his hot-hitting teammate Nick Williams gone, because now he is once again the obvious best outfielder for the Rangers farm system. Although his numbers weren’t as impressive as Williams, Mazara has far more upside, and .289 with 12 longballs still isn’t bad for the pitcher-friendly Double-A division. He’s probably still behind Gallo in priority for a call-up, but with a full season of Double-A under his belt, it’s still possible.
Judge is back from a minor injury, and went 2 for 3 in his return. He likely won’t be called up unless necessary on a contending Yankees squad, and the Yankees have a very brittle and injury-prone line-up even though they’ve gotten lucky thus far.
Bird has plummeted to earth this week with one hit in his last 22 ABs, but on the bright side it hasn’t come with a strikeout surge so it’s probably just bad luck. Judge probably has a slight upper hand for getting promoted just because he arrived at Triple-A first, but it really depends on who gets hurt.
had three consecutive 3-hit games in Triple-A, raising his batting average to a near-impossible .550 in 22 PA. The 24-year old has Peraza-like speed on the basepaths even if he lacks the same pure slap-hitting ability. The spacious PetCo Park is actually ideal for a slap-hitter with no power, and he could just be hot enough to rush his Triple-A campaign. His relative lack of prospect pedigree means he’s probably available, even in deeper leagues.
I am overwhelmingly saddened to report that the great is having his knee looked at and may miss the rest of the season. I mean I don’t know exactly what happened, but I’m assuming he hurt it and isn’t quitting baseball to become a knee model. I’m at least glad he signed that contract with the Royals just before the injury, sorry Royals fans. may no longer be able to benefit from the Ranger’s friendly ballpark, but he’ll find less competition in the outfield in his new Philly digs. He was hitting .300 with 13 Homers and 10 SB in Double-A Frisco. In other Rangers outfielder news, was just promoted to Double-A. He’s more of a long-term stash, but he hit .337 with 13 Home Runs and 13 SB in High-A and cut down his K rate. has put together a strong campaign in Triple-A, with 14 Home Runs and a .274 AVG to go with a solid 14.1% K rate. While at 24 he’s already lost the speed he had earlier in his career due to weight gain, his improved plate discipline gives him a shot at carving out a career as a regular, although he’s not overtaking Kris Bryant any time soon. not only shares a last name with several Earth-like planets, he also is currently riding a 6-game hit streak and has a hit in 12 of his last 13 games. On the season he’s hitting .331 with 4 Home Runs and 13 SB, but wait, there’s more! It also comes with free dual OF/1B eligiblity, an excellent walk rate of 12.2% and a low, low walk rate of 13.2%. Buy today! (Oh sorry, I got confused and was seeing shades of Billy, not Willie Mays).