The Hitter Edition of The Stash List is back and updated for Week 18.
This Stash List highlights the 10 best-hitting prospects likely to make an impact during the 2023 season.
Prospects are often thought of as only holding value in dynasty formats. However, knowing which prospects hold value for the current season can help set you apart in redraft leagues. Several have a 2023 ETA and getting ahead of the curve on rostering these prospects is a key part of roster management. You can check out last week’s edition of the list here and keep reading to find out the latest updates.
- The Stash List is for your redraft leagues and does not consider impact beyond 2023.
- Only current minor league players who are expected to make an impact this season are included.
- Upside, proximity, health, and opportunity are all weighed for each player.
- The focus is on 12-team leagues with standard categories.
- Rankings and rostership percentages will be updated weekly.
- Stats will be updated weekly for all players through Friday’s games.
The Stash List
Although nobody from last week’s stash list was promoted, we did get one surprising promotion. The Giants called up Marco Luciano this past week. Luciano has big-time power and the raw tools to be a star. His Minor League career has been filled with injuries and inconsistency along with high strikeout rates. Luciano is likely going to struggle some during his first Major League stint, but he is worth a speculative add in deep leagues where you are looking for middle infield help. With Brandon Crawford on the IL, this move will shift Casey Schmitt to second base and Brett Wisely to the bench.
Top 10 Hitting Prospects to Stash
What are the Mets doing at this point? For some unknown reason, they refuse to promote Ronny Mauricio to the Major Leagues. Mauricio continues to do everything in his power to earn a promotion. Although his batting average has come down a bit, he is slugging .591 with a .218 ISO and four home runs since the All-Star Break. At this point, it feels like prospect fatigue is setting in for the fantasy players and Mauricio is overlooked in terms of stashing. Over 600 plate appearances, Mauricio would be on pace for 23 home runs and 23 stolen bases which would mark his second consecutive 20/20 season.
With his son in the ballpark, Ronny Mauricio walks us off with this 🚀
It’s our third walkoff win in our last 7 games 😎 pic.twitter.com/qNDh7vj4YI
— Syracuse Mets (@SyracuseMets) July 23, 2023
The Mets are in a weird place as far as what they will do at the trade deadline. Despite a massive payroll, they remain pretty far back in the hunt for the playoffs with several teams ahead of them. Trading players less critical to their success next year seems like the most logical path which would make players like Tommy Pham and Mark Canha prime trade candidates. Both are getting everyday lineup time and Mauricio would be a prime candidate to replace either one of them. I still expect Mauricio up soon and with the trade deadline looming, he is the top stash option.
Jordan Lawlar has picked up after the break right where he left off. He is batting .386/.423/.500 flashing speed, power, and a plus-hit tool. Lawlar is a rare five-category player. He has enough power to smack 20 home runs, the speed to steal 30 bases, the on-base skills to hit toward the top of the lineup and score plenty of runs, hit in other batters, and the hit-tool to bat .280. Do not let his current batting average fool you, after a slow start Lawlar is batting .308 since May 23rd. He is going to be a star once he arrives in Arizona.
The Diamondbacks are scuffling a bit lately. They remain in the thick of things in the hunt for October, but it is clear they will need reinforcements. The Front Office might be a bit reluctant to sacrifice the future of this up-and-coming team. Lawlar represents an opportunity to get better without sacrificing the farm system. He could come up and replace Geraldo Perdomo (although he is extremely hot since the All-Star Break) or he could shift Perdomo to third and take playing time away from Emmanuel Rivera. Lawlar is the definition of an upside stash. There is no guarantee he is up this season, but if Arizona does promote him, he will be an instant star.
One name that keeps getting brought up in the fantasy community as a player we would love to see traded to a team where they could see more playing is Curtis Mead. Mead has continued to look strong since returning from injury and is knocking on the door of a Major League promotion. Mead’s calling card is his hit tool which is paired with excellent plate discipline. Those two things make him an extremely valuable target in OBP leagues and should allow for a smooth transition to the Major Leagues. The power has not fully shown up, but Mead hits the ball hard and there is enough raw power for him to hit 20 home runs. He is not the flashiest prospect to stash but is one of the safer bets to have instant success.
Mead being traded would be the best-case scenario for his 2023 fantasy value. He is ready for the Major Leagues and being dealt to a team with an opening in the infield would be perfect. Knowing how the Rays operate, this seems unlikely. However, there is still reason to stash him. Brandon Lowe is batting just .215 and has only been five percent better than the league average offensively this season. Also, Taylor Walls just landed on the IL opening up the utility role which Mead could fill. Mead is too talented for the Rays to keep in Triple-A. He should be up at some point in August and is worth stashing now.
Last week, Austin Wells was promoted to Triple-A. Although playing in Triple-A is no longer an essential step to being promoted to the Major Leagues, it does signal that Wells is even closer to breaking through. The best part of prospects going to Triple-A now is that we can get Statcast data on them. There still is not much data on Wells (being that he was just promoted), but already he is showing that he is going to hit the ball extremely hard, hit it in the air often, and that he loves to pull the ball. This is a recipe for success for lefties in Yankee Stadium. Wells might never hit for the best average, but he profiles to be a threat for 25+ home runs in that stadium with strong walk rates that will boost his value in OBP leagues.
The catcher position is always difficult to handle in fantasy. For many leagues that have moved to a two-catcher format, the position thins out extremely fast. If you are looking for catching help, now is the time to stash Wells. The Yankees cannot afford to keep handing at-bats to Kyle Higashioka (65 wRC+). Wells offers an instant offensive upgrade to a team that is desperately looking for a spark. Stash Wells now before it is too late.
We have yet to see the Rangers make a big impact move, but you have to feel like one is coming. With the farm system that they have, a trade of a middle infielder seems exceedingly likely and Justin Foscue is the perfect candidate. Foscue is currently in Triple-A and really has nothing left to prove. He is still walking more than he is striking out which is impressive for any player. He has fallen into a bit of a slump in July, but the low batting average can be attributed to a .228 BABIP. If traded, Foscue should instantly slot into an everyday role with his new club assuming a position is open. Stash him now before he gets traded and everybody rushes to pick him up.
Everson Pereira is one of the hottest names on the streets right now. He has been excellent all season but has been on fire since being promoted from Double-A to Triple-A. He has already hit four home runs in 15 games including mashing two in the same game last Sunday. Since the pandemic, Pereira has never slugged below .455 at any level in the Minor Leagues with his lowest wRC+ being 119. At his worst, Pereira has been 19% better than the league average at the plate and has a profile that should be exciting for fantasy managers. There is 25 home run 15 steal upside here which should be enough to catch the eye of fantasy managers.
What makes Pereira such a valuable stash is the fact that the Yankees need to win. There is immense pressure on this team to make the playoffs, and Pereira’s success in Triple-A could force the hand of the front office. Even with the return of Aaron Judge, there is still plenty of room for Pereira in the Yankees’ lineup. If he continues to hit as well as he has, the team will have no choice but to promote him.
Masyn Winn has continued his incredible month of July and is now up to six home runs since the All-Star Break. Winn hit five home runs in a seven-game span from the 21st to the 28th including this one below:
Masyn Winn crushes his SEVENTH homer of July!
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) July 28, 2023
The Cardinals are clearly sellers heading into the Trade Deadline. With Paul DeJong a likely candidate to be traded, the starting shortstop position should be up for grabs. Although they are out of it, Winn is playing well enough to force the team to give him a chance to earn the job before the end of 2022. At this rate, he is going to be called up as soon as DeJong is traded, making now your last chance to stash him. He has an exciting blend of power and speed and will be a valuable fantasy asset once in St. Louis.
Although the second half of the season got off to a slow start, Colt Keith is quickly heating back up. Watch this home run from Wednesday and try to not get excited about his potential:
Colt Keith. Crushed.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) July 26, 2023
Keith has the kind of power that is fun to dream about. Although his home ballpark is not the most favorable, Keith still projects to be a 25-30 home run, middle-of-the-order bat. He has an excellent hit tool that sprays the ball all over the park and the pull-side awareness to drive it out when a pitcher makes a mistake. Despite only playing 19 games in Triple-A, Keith is proving he is ready for the Major Leagues. The Tigers do not have enough talent at the Major League level to keep him in the Minor Leagues. Go pick up Keith now and expect him in Detroit before the end of August.
9. Brayan Rocchio, SS Cleveland Guardians
The first really notable trade of 2023 was the Guardians sending Amed Rosario to the Dodgers in exchange for Noah Syndergaard. The trade of Rosario likely signals the team’s willingness to rely on young players in their system to make up for the loss of production from Rosario. A couple of intriguing names are currently with Cleveland in Gabriel Arias and Tyler Freeman. Both players are likely going to be given a shot to prove themselves, but the real winner here is Brayan Rocchio. With the trade, it feels like it is only a matter of time before Rocchio is back in Cleveland and playing shortstop every day.
Rocchio has been red-hot since the start of July. He has hit safely in all but two games batting an incredible .342. On top of that, he is also walking more than he is striking out over that time. Rocchio is now up to 19 stolen bases and profiles to be a solid source of average and speed from a fantasy perspective. The upside here is limited as Rocchio has never developed any real game power and hits too many ground balls. That being said, stolen bases are always valuable and Rocchio should step into an everyday role any day now. Get him stashed to your fantasy teams now.
Kyle Manzardo remains on the Triple-A IL. His extended stay on the IL results in him moving down on this Stash List. Although the odds of Manzardo making his Major League debut are slimmer now than they were when the season began, he has as much upside as almost anybody on this list. His Triple-A slash line does not paint an accurate picture of his strong season and he will have an instant fantasy impact once promoted. He has an excellent hit tool, strong plate discipline, and the power to drive the ball to all fields. Manzardo remains a strong stash option based on upside, but it will likely take an injury in Tampa Bay to get him to the Major Leagues.
There is also a possibility the Rays trade him before Tuesday’s trade deadline although that seems unlikely. Assuming Manzardo’s injury is not serious, a trade would instantly improve his stash priority.
On The Bubble