Welcome to the third edition of The Stash List for pitchers! The List shuffles around pretty significantly this week as we’ve seen some players continue to post elite ratios and others continue to feature spotty command. In fact, only three players on this list currently carry a walk rate below 10% in the Minors this season. No one has thrown 20 innings yet, so there’s still plenty of time to improve before we smash the panic button. Just keep a watchful eye on these wild arms.
- 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
- Players who have already made their MLB debuts can not have thrown more than 50 IP in MLB
- Upside, proximity, health, and opportunity are all weighed for each player
- The focus is on 12-team leagues with standard categories
- Rankings and ownership percentages will be updated weekly
This section of the column is going to highlight the pitchers that were on the previous week’s list, but who have since made their MLB debuts and are no longer considered stashes.
Jhony Brito, NYY (Prev. 9)
While Jhony Brito does qualify as a graduate of this list because he’s on the Yankees’ active roster, his clunker of a start against the Twins has his status up in the air. This is especially true because Carlos Rodón and Luis Severino will likely be returning from the IL in late April or early May. He gave up a ton of hard contact on Thursday and he failed to draw a single swing on a pitch out of the zone.
This was a sharp turn around after his first two starts, so be cautious moving forward. He should make his next start against the Angels in New York. If he stays in the rotation he’ll follow that up with a rematch against the Twins and then a late-April matchup against the Rangers in Arlington.
Taj Bradley did make his MLB debut this week, but he was optioned to Durham after so he still technically qualifies for this list as he’s currently on a minor league roster. He’s likely been picked up already in most leagues, but he should still be a priority add for the weekly who have yet to have a waiver run since his promotion. He’s on the list below, where I’ll focus more on his roster spot and workload outlook this season.
Top 10 Pitcher Prospects to Stash
1. Brandon Pfaadt, ARI – ETA May (Previously 1)
Even though Brandon Pfaadt has largely given in to the woes of pitching in the PCL this season, he’s still managed to keep most of the same skills that he showed when he dominated the league in a short stint last year. His K and BB rates are very similar, and his xFIP is actually a bit lower than last season’s AAA mark.
I haven’t seen anything that would indicate he deserves to drop at all on this list, so he stays at the top.
2. Tanner Bibee, CLE – ETA May (Prev. 4)
Tanner Bibee has yet to allow earned runs en masse in his Minor League career, and it doesn’t look like he’s slowing down any time soon. He’s barreling towards the Big Leagues.
3. Taj Bradley, TBR – ETA July (Prev. 6)
Taj Bradley looks to be the big benefactor of the injury issues that are starting to plague the Rays starting rotation. Tyler Glasnow is out for another month or so, Zach Eflin is currently on the 15-day IL, and Jeffrey Springs is now going to miss at least two months after being pulled from his latest start.
This all should solidify Bradley’s spot in the MLB rotation, and he might technically graduate from this list before it’s published on Saturday if they call him back up to replace Springs. Regardless, he’ll generate a huge amount of FAAB dollars spent this weekend.
I would be comfortable with bidding up to 15% of my total FAAB dollars on him if I’m in need of pitching in a redraft league. Even if the strikeout numbers aren’t actually as impressive as they were in his first start moving forward, he should compile a good amount of innings with high upside for ratios.
Bradley has a 2.61 ERA in 310.2 IP in the minor leagues. As if that isn’t impressive enough, he’s managed to improve his walk rate after every one of his four promotions to higher levels. He finished last season with 59 solid innings at AAA, but he saw his strikeout rate drop by almost 10 percentage points.
4. Gavin Stone, LAD – ETA May (Prev. 2)
Gavin Stone gets some grace for pitching in the PCL, but the fantastic K-BB% gains that he flashed in his second start evaporated in his third. He’s in danger of dropping to the bottom of this list, which is a shame considering how lights-out he was in the spring.
5. Matthew Liberatore, STL – ETA April (Prev. 7)
Ah, man. Here we go again. After a lackluster MLB debut in the 2022 season, I was all but ready to move on from Matthew Liberatore. But after 10 strong innings in Major League Spring Training and three stellar regular season starts in AAA, we’re back to thinking he could throw impactful innings for the Cardinals this season. He’s shown increased velocity on the fastball and is generating whiffs like crazy.
It really helps that the Cardinals are hurting for pitching depth, as their MLB rotation features guys with long injury histories and one of the spots is loosely held by Jake Woodford, who has spent most of his MLB career in the bullpen.
6. DL Hall, BAL – ETA May (Prev. 3)
DL Hall looks to be building up his workload as a starter, and I would love to see that trend continue into his next start in the next few days. His strikeout skills and walk liabilities are still present, so if you see a trend in the right direction on his command, shoot him up your waiver wire priority lists.
7. Luis Ortiz, PIT – ETA May (Prev. 8)
Luis Ortiz made a brief major league debut last season and flashed some extremely impressive pitches. So far this season, he’s striking out more batters than he ever has in the past, but it’s coming with a few more walks than we’d like to see. Watching which of those two numbers normalizes over his next few starts will be key to establishing his potential for this season. He could have a big second half.
8. Gavin Williams, CLE – ETA July (Prev. 10)
After posting a 1.96 ERA and 11.7 K/9 in 115 innings last season, it’s hard to imagine that they keep the training wheels on him for very long. And considering how packed the AAA rotation is and how nasty Williams was in his season debut, it isn’t out of the question that he makes the jump from AA to MLB at some point in the first half.
9. Kyle Harrison, SFG – ETA June (Prev. 5)
Kyle Harrison is the biggest dropper compared to last week’s Stash List. He hasn’t done anything yet to quell my concerns about his gaudy walk rates, and he actually has a -8.6 K-BB% through three starts. His pedigree is keeping him hanging on this list by a thread, as I’m increasingly doubtful that he’ll be able to provide many positive-value innings for fantasy leagues this season.
10. Logan Allen, CLE – ETA June (Prev. NR)
I’ve gone a bit back and forth on Logan Allen over the last year. He pitches in a great organization for development, but he also faces very stiff competition within that organization for a long-term rotation spot. He doesn’t have the status as a former first-round pick like Williams, or the history of elite ratios like Bibee, and he doesn’t have a rocket arm like both of them do. He’ll also eventually be competing with Shane Bieber, Triston McKenzie, and Aaron Civale.
Allen was drafted a year before Bibee and Williams and he pitched 59.2 innings in AAA last season, which makes him the only one of the trio who reached that level before 2023. While his ERA in those AAA innings was 6.49, his xFIP was 4.45 and he was quite unlucky in his BABIP and left-on-base percentage. He’s the only lefty anywhere near this MLB rotation (except Konnor Pilkington, but he’s had his chances), and if he can keep up these early-season gains he will absolutely get a shot to prove himself in the Big Leagues this summer.
This is a brand-new section of The Stash List aimed towards those of you who play in deep leagues (15+ teams or 375+ players rostered) where some of the guys on the list above might already be taken because of their higher pedigree. These players’ debuts will likely be a bit further out than the players listed above, but the purpose is to be ready to pounce on them as soon as it becomes clear that an opportunity might open up.
I expect it will primarily consist of top-200 prospects who are advancing faster than expected, or of players who are outperforming expectations and came seemingly out of nowhere (see: Cody Bradford).
The players are listed in alphabetical order, and I don’t have the time to do write-ups for these guys, so I’d highly suggest checking out their Fangraphs pages and/or watching one of their starts. Also, shout out to @SpokaneWaUpdate on Twitter for inspiring this section of the article!
Miller definitely deserves to be in the Top 10, he looks better than anyone the A’s are currently putting out there. Hasn’t got a lot of MiLB experience but not much point in keeping him down given his age and injury history, use those bullets while you can.