The Stash 8/25: The Top 10 Hitting Prospects to Stash
Every weekend, I post about the minor leaguers you should be stashing on your team. These rankings are done solely for prospects with the potential to 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. Prospects are a great way to stay ahead of the curve once the most notable prospects are called up. Not all prospects need to be stashed in every league, as not all league compositions are made equally.
1. Carter Kieboom, 2B/SS, (Washington Nationals) – ETA Early Sept.
Since August 5th, Carter Kieboom has been on a tear, hitting .320 with five multi-hit games. By contrast, Brian Dozier is hitting .147 (although three of those hits were home runs). Kieboom is a safe bet for a September call-up, having been placed on the 40-man roster earlier in the season after a brief stint in the majors. Kieboom continues to take reps around the diamond and should serve as a super-utility player in 2019 before assuming a full-time role as Washington’s second baseman in 2020.
2. Luis Robert, OF, (Chicago White Sox) – ETA Early Sept.
Luis Robert hit the 30/30 mark on Saturday between three levels of minor league play. In reality, that number is 30/36 with a .333 batting average and 21 doubles in 97 consistent games at each level this season. Chicago would benefit from having Robert gain some MLB experience, as the team is widely expected to compete in 2020; while Chicago could keep Robert down to benefit his service time, the team already has him locked into a $52-million contract. This is not fall 2019 Eloy Jimenez.
3. Jaylin Davis, OF, (San Francisco Giants) – ETA Early Sept.
Jaylin Davis continues to eviscerate Triple-A pitching with 25 home runs, 18 multi-hit games, and a .351 batting average in just 60 games. Davis has 35 home runs in total this season, and while the juiced ball is certainly helping his case, Davis had begun his breakout before making it to Triple-A. San Francisco is on the cusp of falling out of the Wild Card race, now five games behind with a month to-go—Davis will help give them the power surge their offense so desperately needs.
4. Kyle Tucker, OF, (Houston Astros) – ETA Early Sept.
Kyle Tucker made it to the 30/30 mark after repeating a year in Triple-A, but his .267 batting average and streakiness leave much to desire. Tucker is in the middle of such a streak now, hitting .309 since August 1st with five home runs and seven stolen bases, while his MLB counterpart Josh Reddick is batting a paltry .136 over that same span. Coupled with the handful of reps he has received at first base, Tucker could work his way into meaningful at-bats in September as he is a surefire call-up when rosters expand, as he is already on the 40-man roster.
5. Jorge Mateo, SS/2B, (Oakland Athletics) – ETA Early Sept.
Since his return from the Injured List on August 15th, Jorge Mateo has been hitting well, with a .282 batting average and two stolen bases. This is Oakland’s opportunity to finally call-up Mateo as the team will have to make a decision next season when his MiLB options run out. Jurickson Profar and Franklin Barreto have disappointed at second base and Mateo presents a speedy alternative on a team with the sixth-fewest stolen bases in baseball.
6. Nate Lowe, 1B, (Tampa Bay Rays) – ETA Early Sept.
Since his demotion on August 2nd, Nate Lowe is slashing .338/.424/.568 with four home runs and an elite 11:11 K:BB ratio. Ji-Man Choi has tapered off as the season progressed and is hitting only .178 in August. Jesus Aguilar has hit well in August, but is playing primarily at designated hitter. Lowe could have a path to meaningful playing time, splitting time with Choi and Aguilar, and if he can hit a hot streak in Tampa Bay then he could earn a winning share as the team’s future first baseman.
7. Zack Collins, C, (Chicago White Sox) – ETA Early Sept.
After a short stint in Chicago in June, Zack Collins was demoted and started going crazy. Since July 1st he is slashing .355/.462/.673 with eight home runs. Most importantly, he has made massive improvements in his K:BB ratio, going 23:21 over that same span. When Collins gets the call this fall again, if he is able to translate those gains, he will be a sneaky addition for those teams lacking an impact catcher.
8. Sean Murphy, C, (Oakland Athletics) – ETA Early Sept.
Sean Murphy worked his way off of the Injured List and back to Triple-A this week, where he has since hit three home runs. Murphy has only played 36 games this season because of injuries, but is hitting .323 with 11 home runs in that limited span. Murphy is one of the better defensive catchers in the minor leagues and should provide a significant boost to Oakland upon promotion despite his restrained workload this season.
9. Kelvin Gutierrez, 3B, (Kansas City Royals) – ETA Early Sept.
Kelvin Gutierrez has been rock solid in Triple-A since the All-Star break, slashing .300/.357/.487 with six home runs and four stolen bases—he’s just finishing a 10-game hit streak too. Gutierrez is on the 40-man roster after a dozen or so games earlier this summer and presents an intriguing option at third base, offering 20/15 potential at the position. Kansas City shuffles most of their position players around the field, so Gutierrez should be able to find stable playing time as a plus defender.
10. Drew Waters, OF, (Atlanta Braves) – ETA Early September
Drew Waters, like Ian Anderson, is on the cusp of a promotion in Atlanta after a late-season promotion to Double-A. Waters offers an aggressive hit tool that makes a significant amount of contact, but is prone for a considerable number of whiffs. With Ender Inciarte out for the remainder of the regular season, Adam Duvall was given the first opportunity; while he has played well since his promotion, he remains on thin ice as Atlanta barrels toward the playoffs.
Jo Adell – Check Adell out in the Arizona Fall League this September.
Graphic by Michael Haas (@digitalHaas on Twitter).