Minor League Sleeper Team of the Week
Under-the-radar players are vital to your dynasty teams. Players such as Bryan Reynolds, John Means, and Hunter Dozier are among the many players who started the season unheralded and have made a big fantasy impact. This is a weekly article about some players who are putting up interesting numbers in the minors and whether or not they should be stashed in your dynasty leagues. As a rule, the player must be less than 5% owned in Fantrax leagues.
Lorenzo Quintana, C, Houston Astros, Age: 30
Current Level: Triple-A
Starting with the deepest-league prospect imaginable, a 30-year-old bat-first prospect having his first legitimately good season, Lorenzo Quintana has an interesting path that has led to some potential future upside. Quintana defected from Cuba in 2015 but didn’t sign with an MLB team until the end of 2017. After playing in Cuba from 2008-2014, Quintana hadn’t played professional baseball from 2015-2017. The Astros signed him as an international free agent. A year ago in his first year in the system, he was fine, but this year, he’s really shown off his most interesting quality, which is his power. In 58 games this season, Quintana has a .311/.352/.575 slash line across Double-A and Triple-A to go along with 14 home runs. His plate approach isn’t great, as he has just a 4.1% walk rate on the season, but he doesn’t strikeout much either. Quintana isn’t somebody I’m adding in any leagues that aren’t super deep, but his profile is super unique. There’s a chance he makes the MLB club next season.
Curtis Terry, 1B, Texas Rangers, Age: 22
Current Level: High-A
To be completely honest, I didn’t really know who Curtis Terry was until I watched him recently in a High-A game against my hometown Frederick Keys. His frame is huge, and when I saw the numbers he was putting up on the season, I was shocked he hasn’t been getting more hype. Terry has been dominating High-A with a .360/.412/.591 slash line in 182 plate appearances. His biggest issue is his strikeout rate, but that’s currently at just 17.6%. If he can keep it around that rate as he progresses through the minor, he’s going to become a much more hyped prospect. I’d be buying him now as his raw power and ability to make great contact interest me a ton.
Cristian Santana, 3B Los Angeles Dodgers, Age: 22
Current Level: Double-A
Cristian Santana has a profile I normally don’t steer toward in my dynasty leagues. His plate approach is awful. Over the past two seasons, his BB/K ratio in High-A and Double-A is 34:166 in 990 plate appearances. However, Santana makes up for it with big-time raw power and really good quality of contact. He’s hit 34 home runs in the past two seasons, and his .303 batting average on the season has been thanks to his ability to hit the ball exceptionally hard when he makes contact. For Santana to become a legitimate prospect, he needs to improve his plate approach, but he’s continuously played young for his level. If he improves upon that discipline, there are enough tools for him to be a really interesting prospect.
Levi Kelly, SP, Arizona Diamondbacks, Age: 20
Current Level: A-Ball
Levi Kelly is somebody on whom I was super high entering the season. Because he’s been amazing in 2019, I figured he’d be too owned for this, but at only 2% owned, you need to stop reading this and go see if he’s available in your dynasty leagues. In Single-A on the season, Kelly has a 1.96 ERA on the season in 87.1 innings with a 113:32 K/BB ratio. An eighth-round pick in 2018, Kelly features a great fastball-slider combination, with the fastball sitting from 91-94 and at its best hitting 95-96. He needs to work on his changeup command to have an MLB starter’s repertoire, but considering he’s in his first full professional season and is doing what he’s doing, I trust him to figure that out. Kelly has “huge riser” written all over him, and while he’s still under the radar, there’s a huge buying opportunity in dynasty leagues.
Cameron Hill, RP, Cleveland Indians, Age: 25
Current Level: Triple-A
After profiling as a middling relief prospect, Cameron Hill has been insanely good this season across Single-A, High-A, and Triple-A for the Indians. In his six professional seasons, Hill had never posted a K/9 higher than 10.8 and normally sat around eight K/9. After missing the first two months of the season because of injury, Hill has been electric, with a 38:6 K/BB ratio in 25.2 innings. His 1.05 ERA across the three levels is by far the best of his career. Hill features a good fastball that sits around 94-97, but his best pitch is an electric curveball that has dominated Triple-A hitters and has been his strikeout pitch. If he gets a call-up to the majors, he could instantly be the Indians’ second- or third-best relief pitcher behind Brad Hand, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s a move they made sooner rather than later.
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@FreshMeatComm on Twitter)