This weeks 2016 Fantasy Baseball Rookie Report has seen more young blood called to the major leagues. Aaron Blair, Blake Snell, Jose Berrios, Sean Manaea, and Jorge Polanco have all been called-up this past week.
None of these player’s major league spots are guaranteed for the remainder of the year though. Injuries at the major league level have brought them up and Snell has already been sent down after a spot start.
Are these players worth holding on to? Can your roster support a player who may only get a handful of at-bats or one start before being sent back to the minors? This may be the time to trade this player. The hype will be the highest and the players value may never get better. Find the owner in your league who loves prospects and see what you can get.
Do not let 2015 cloud your judgement. Not every top prospect is going to play like Carlos Correa or Kris Bryant. Both Byron Buxton and Max Kepler, two top prospects, have struggled and have already been sent down this season. Early season call-ups do not guarantee season long playing time.
It’s time to check in on the leagues young talent.
Fantasy Baseball Rookie Report
In The Majors
Tyler White, 1B, Houston Astros
Since April 21, White has just one hit, one run and one RBI. He has definitely come back to earth. Of course, White was not going to maintain the pace he was and The Real Tyler White has stood up. Are you willing to roster him? He does not have a ton of power, but he maintains good plate discipline. This was evident by his on-base percentage above .400 at all levels of the minor leagues. So, he will see pitches, take walks and get on base.
In an on-base percentage league, he can still be useful. In batting average leagues he won’t kill you but may not provide the same power output he began the season with.
Jorge Polanco, SS, Minnesota Twins
Polanco is the Twins fifth ranked prospect. So far in five games he has pinch hit in four and only has one hit. He does not have much power but stole 19 bases between two minor league levels last season. He will provide a good batting average but his at-bats will be limited right now. I would not rush to the waiver wire for him.
Max Kepler, OF, Minnesota Twins
If you can’t tell by the three Twins on this week’s post, the Twins are struggling hard this season. The team is young and trying to find what will work for them.
Kepler was only hitting .167 in nine games. He was over matched but was also not getting a lot of at-bats. It will be much better for his development to spend more time in the minors playing every day, getting the at-bats and outfield reps. Keep an eye on him.
Nomar Mazara, OF, Texas Rangers
Mazara continues to put the bat on the ball. He has hit safely in five straight games coming into Wednesday (April 27) and is averaging .365. His .395 BABIP is extremely high, so you can look for that to come down.
Mazara has not hit many home runs (one) or driven in many runs (two) in the past eight games, but he is scoring runs at a healthy clip. He has not given the Rangers a reason to take him out of the line-up, so keep him in your line-up as well.
Aaron Blair, SP, Atlanta Braves
Blair, a key piece in the Shelby Miller trade, made his debut for the Braves on Sunday (April 24). Blair went 5.1 innings, allowing three earned runs, while walking two and striking out one. He did have a 10.42 K/9 this season in Triple-A but was not overpowering in his start.
The Braves are bad and Blair will take his lumps. However, I would wait to see how his next few starts go before you add him to your roster.
Jose Berrios, SP, Minnesota Twins
Berrios is the organizations top pitching prospect. With two pitchers being placed on the disabled list, Berrios is getting his chance to contribute. Berrios is one of the five best pitchers in the organization and he just needs the big league experience to prove he belongs.
Berrios had his major league debut on April 27 and was charged with four earned runs, allowed two walks, and struck out five. Not a great major league debut for Berrios, but his talent is undoubtable.
Blake Snell, SP, Tampa Bay Rays
Snell, the Rays top pitching prospect, made his major league debut April 23 against the Yankees. He was then sent down to the minors immediately after the game.
His performance was major league worthy. He managed five innings pitched, two hits, one earned run, one walk and six strikeouts. It took Snell 90 pitches to complete five innings and he used four pitches effectively to maneuver the lineup. He has not thrown more than five innings this season and at 90 pitches, the Rays were not going to tax him anymore.
His plus fastball sets up his slow curve. His change-up and slider will allow him to move the ball to both corners of the plate and keep both right handed and left handed hitters off balance. This will allow him to go deep into games, keeping hitters off balance. Snell has all the skills to be a successful front-line starter. He is worth holding until he joins the rotation again.
Sean Manaea, SP, Oakland Athletics
Manea has been called-up to start on April 29 for the Athletics. Manaea Boasts a 10.5 K/9 with three runs allowed in three starts so far this season. Manaea shows great control as he has only walked four batters in 18 IP. Oakland’s rotation is in a constant state of flux and other than Sonny Gray, each pitcher is unpredictable. Manaea is worth the add but a spot for the remainder of the season will not be guaranteed until earned.
Jon Gray, SP, Colorado Rockies
In his start on April 27, Gray allowed six earned runs in 3.2 innings. Gray struck out two and walked one. If you started him at Coors, you made a mistake. He is possibly a streamer away from Coors but I would not roster him.
On the Farm
A.J. Reed, 1B, Houston Astros
Reed has a four game hit streak going coming into Wednesday. During the streak he has one home run and five RBIs with one run scored. Reed is striking out at least once a game, which is concerning but his K/BB ratio is about 2/1, which is a good sign.
The power has not shown up yet but the potential is hard to ignore. If Reed gets hot and White continues to cool off, he could find himself getting the call.
Orlando Arcia, SS, Milwaukee Brewers
Arcia is on fire at Triple-A so far this season. He is batting .313 with two HRs, 10 RBIs, 13 runs and three SBs.
Jonathan Villar is the current Brewers shortstop and is mired in a 3-22 slump. The Brewers are bad but Villar is doing nothing to contribute to the offense. Watch Villar and Arcia carefully. The Brewers will not want to start his arbitration clock early but Villar is not doing much to keep his job.
Joey Gallo, 3B, Texas Rangers
Gallo has three HRs, five RBIs and six runs scored in the last five games. What is more important is his seven walks to six strikeouts in the same span. He is going to strike out, but the walks are a great sign of his improved approach at the plate and it is showing in his average. At .270, Gallo is hitting 75 points higher than last season in Triple-A. A lineup with Mazara and Gallo could be very productive.
Jameson Taillon, SP, Pittsburgh Pirates
Taillon, another high ranking Pirates pitching prospect, is a candidate to be called-up to the big league rotation should the big club need reinforcements. In three starts, Taillon has struck out 16 batters and walked none and has only allowed three earned runs.
The Pirates rotation has been up and down and Jeff Locke has been unpredictable and ineffectively wild. Taillon could be the player called-up to help solidify the rotation. He has been unlucky with injury the past two years but he has the pedigree to be a front of the rotation starter.
Tyler Glasnow. SP, Pittsburgh Pirates
Glasnow was dominant in his start on April 26 at Triple-A Indianapolis, striking out 11 while only walking one in six IP. This is the step the Pirates were hoping to see from Glasnow. Control to go with the over powering stuff. After Berrios’ call-up, Glasnow has seen a significant amount of adds in leagues.
With the Pirates sitting in second place in the division, they will be in no hurry to call-up Glasnow or Taillon. If each pitcher continues to perform like this, it will be hard to keep them in the minors.
- Fantasy Baseball Rookie Report: Last Call - September 23, 2016
- Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Mining for Championships - September 22, 2016
- Fantasy Baseball Rookie Report: Players Impacting Your Roster - September 16, 2016