Every weekend, I will be posting about the minor leaguers that you should be stashing on your team. These rankings are done solely for prospects who could potentially impact the 2019 season. Their ranks are predicated on when they will be called up and raw talent—we want to give you an edge in building your team throughout the year. Not all prospects need to be stashed in every league as not all league compositions are made equally.
1. Zac Gallen, SP Miami Marlins – ETA Late June
Elieser Hernandez did, in fact, get the call—deservedly so after throwing a 1.13 ERA with a 12.94 K/9 so far this season. Hernandez was already on the 40-man roster, so his appearance in Miami made the call easier from a roster management perspective as well. Jordan Yamamoto also got the call, straight from Double-A, which came as a surprise. Zac Gallen continues to dominate with a 1.57 ERA and 112 strikeouts over 86 innings (next closest in Triple-A is Hector Noesi & Lewis Thorpe with 79 strikeouts). Now Jose Urena has been placed on the 60-day Injured List with a herniated disk forcing Miami’s hand to find consistency toward the back end of their rotation. A Yamamoto demotion to Triple-A would facilitate Gallen getting the call while Urena and Caleb Smith are both injured.
2. Dylan Cease, SP Chicago White Sox – ETA Mid July
Dylan Cease had his two worst outings of the season, combining for 8 runs over 5.2 innings with a sole strikeout and 6 walks. Cease’s struggles are at the moment irrelevant to his call-up date as the team seems intent on waiting for his Super Two date to pass in mid-July, something that has been all but confirmed by GM Rick Hahn on multiple occasions. Cease’s inconsistency makes him a bit riskier of a play when he is promoted, but has the talent to be an SP2—especially in this year’s AL Central.
3. Brendan McKay, SP Tampa Bay Rays – ETA Early August
Brendan McKay continues his hot pursuit to the Majors this week, letting up only one run over five innings while striking out four batters. Five innings will be McKay’s cap in any given game as the team works to maintain his innings as he only threw 72.1 innings last year—he is already at 56.2 innings this season. Tampa Bay is keeping him on extended rest between starts, but the team will have to decide what his limit will be this year as it will limit his fantasy effectiveness.
4. Jesus Luzardo, SP Oakland Athletics – ETA Late July
Jesus Luzardo is back in action, throwing a shutout 3 innings in relief in High-A—needing only 33 pitches to clear through his outing. He let up two hits and struck out two batters while not issuing a walk. This is a major step forward for Luzardo who has been working back from a shoulder injury he suffered toward the end of Spring Training. Luzardo is in line to debut as a starter for Oakland once he completes his rehab assignment.
5. A.J. Puk, SP Oakland Athletics – ETA Late July
A.J. Puk also began his rehab assignment, starting the same game Jesus Luzardo took over in. Puk let up a single home run in his two-inning start while striking out four. Puk came out of the gate hard, getting up to 99 mph several times—an encouraging sign as he works back from Tommy John surgery. Puk is at risk of ending up in the bullpen this season, but outings like this could leave him prepared for a starting role alongside Luzardo.
6. Anthony Kay, SP New York Mets – ETA Late July
Anthony Kay continues to sprint toward the Majors, getting promoted to Triple-A this week after throwing a 1.49 ERA and 70 strikeouts over 66.1 innings. Kay struggled in his first Triple-A outing, but GM Allard Baird made it clear that the team’s intent to have him starting in the Majors this year. Despite working back from Tommy John surgery, Kay will work as a starter and not out of the bullpen—a sign the team is less concerned over Kay’s workload this season.
7. Logan Allen, SP San Diego Padres – ETA Late July
Logan Allen has had a poor start this week letting up four runs in 5.1 innings. Allen has been rocky over his past three starts and while one was a quality start it was sandwiched between two of his worst since the start of the season. Allen dominated most of April and all of May and is still in consideration for a call-up as San Diego’s rotation past Chris Paddack has been bad at worst, inconsistent at best.
8. Rico Garcia, SP Colorado Rockies – ETA Early August
Rico Garcia is destined for a call-up, likely to Triple-A, but given his track record of dominance—he could be ready for Major League action now. Garcia has been one of the best if not the best pitcher in Double-A this season with a 1.88 ERA and 85 strikeouts over 67 innings. Garcia has let up more than one run only twice this season and while he does not have the pedigree as a former 30th rounder, his improvements seem here to stay.
9. Lewis Thorpe, SP Minnesota Twins – ETA Late July
Lewis Thorpe had another great outing this week, striking out nine batters over five innings without letting up a run—in fact, he only let up one hit this week. Thorpe’s season has been punctuated by three poor outings, but has otherwise put up a solid season with an elite strikeout rate and above average strikeout rate.
10. Dario Agrazal, SP Pittsbugh Pirates – ETA Today
Dario Agrazal is set to make his MLB debut today. He has a 3.10 ERA on the season with 39 strikeouts in 49.1 innings. Agrazal will not light up the sky, but certainly, against a poor Miami team he will make for a good streaming start in most leagues.
Mitch Keller – He’s back up and as of this article has not been demoted.
Graphic by Michael Haas (@digitalHaas on Twitter)