Hello Fantasy friends and foes! Welcome back to the SCFE’s Weekly Rookie Report.
It looks like pitchers will not feel lucky in Week 13 as we will not discuss any pitchers in this week’s Rookie Report. I came up with a total of six hitters that Fantasy owners should have an interest in for this season and beyond.
Unfortunately, we have lost one of these hitters to a season-ending surgery, you should know who I am talking about. If not, please read below for further details. Which rookie hitter placed himself in his team’s record book for RBI in a game? Which slugger just got promoted to Triple-A? Find out the answers to those questions and even more in the Week 13 Rookie Report.
Should you start any of these hitters in your lineup? Take a look and see what Aaron Hinckley suggests in his Week 13 Hitting Planner: Wild West Coast Roast.
Week 13 Rookie Report
In The Show
Franklin Barreto, INF, A’s
Franklin Barreto is considered the top hitting prospect in the A’s organization. He was called up last week to replace the injured Matt Chapman, who was placed on the disabled list with a right-hand contusion. This is Barreto’s third stint in the big leagues this season after getting called up twice before for only limited action.
Barreto has finished hitting at least .276 or above in his six years of professional baseball prior to this season. He showed a lot of promise last season when he hit .290 with 15 home runs and 15 stolen bases in 111 games. So far this season, he has unfortunately not played up to that level. He has a .236/.335/.441 slash line with seven homers and 31.9% Ks. His development (or lack thereof) has been hampered by his high strikeout rate.
Since returning to Triple-A Nashville in early June from his last MLB cameo, he has hit 10-for-42 with five extra-base hits but once again those strikeouts rear its ugly head. He struck out in 39% of his plate appearances with a 14.5% swinging strike rate.
Barreto does have pop in his bat as evidenced by recording his first multi-homer game as a big leaguer and his six RBI were a career-high. He slugged a pair of three-run home runs and put himself in the team record book as the youngest A’s player in at least 110 years to have a six-RBI game!
Without improving his batting eye, Franklin Barreto will be no more than a possible MI in deeper Fantasy formats and not someone to trust in dynasty formats.
Jake Bauers, 1B/OF, Rays
Jake Bauers, the Rays’ No. 5 prospect and No. 55 on the Top 100, received his first call-up after a solid start to his season in Triple-A. In 52 games with Durham, Bauers posted a .279/.357/.426 batting line with five home runs, 14 doubles, and 10 stolen bases.
A .276 hitter in 606 Minor League games, Bauers was given an extended look in big league camp in 2017. He hit .371 with four homers and 13 RBI over parts of 17 games. That success continued after he was sent back to Triple-A Durham that season when he slashed .263/.368/.412 with 13 homers and 31 doubles. In addition, he possessed an International League-best 78 walks despite being one of the league’s youngest players.
Jake Bauers possesses an above-average hit tool. He is capable of hitting .290-plus with perpetual high on-base rates and potential on the base paths. His instincts as a baserunner allow his average speed to play up and with at least 10 stolen bases in three straight seasons. Bauers will provide solid Fantasy value among several categories but will not stand out. A perfect player to place in your MI slot or as a fourth or fifth outfielder.
Adalberto Mondesi, INF, Royals
Adalberto Mondesi was called up on Monday by the Royals in a series of moves made by the club including the trade of long-time closer Kelvin Herrera. Mondesi was a consensus Top-40 prospect prior to the 2016 season, with Baseball Prospectus rating him as high as 16th on their list of baseball’s top minor leaguers.
However, over his brief big-league career, Mondesi has a horrible .181/.226/.271 slash over 72 games. He received his first regular-season opportunity in 2016, and the 20-year-old was less than impressive. He hit .181/.231/.281 after 47 games before being sent back to Triple-A Omaha. In 2017, he got a second chance in the big leagues. Over the first 25 games of the season, he was even worse with a .170/.214/.245 slash and once again sent back to Omaha.
Manager Ned Yost told reporters (including The Athletic’s Rustin Dodd) that Mondesi will play four games a week and will begin to start a game or two per week at shortstop in place of Alcides Escobar. Escobar has especially struggled lately, with his .337 OPS in June ranking last among 188 qualified MLB hitters. Yet he’s also started 405 consecutive games, which is the longest current streak in baseball.
Mondesi has hit .250/.295/.492 with a .786 OPS and 16 extra-base hits over 29 games at Omaha this season. His wRC+ is 97, which just below league average. I am not sure if Mondesi can produce more offense than Escobar. I am also not sure if he can be any worse. The Royals’ offense has disappeared in June and the teams rank last in MLB with team batting average (.187) and runs (42). Kansas City can’t get any worse although I don’t think Mondesi will help the team get much better or help Fantasy rosters either.
On The Brink
Nick Senzel, INF, Reds
One prospect that has been mentioned a few weeks in this Rookie Report is the Reds’ top organizational prospect Nick Senzel. Unfortunately, this time it will not be because of his bat exploits. The 22-year-old suffered a season-ending injury.
Top prospect IF Nick Senzel on Tuesday will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn tendon in his right index finger…he suffered the injury last night…in 44 apps for Louisville Senzel hit .310 with 12 doubles, 2 triples, 6 HR, 25 RBI and 8 stolen bases.
— Reds Media Relations (@RedsPR) June 23, 2018
The hardest part about the timing was how well he was hitting at Triple-A Louisville. In 19 games during June, he was hitting .387 with three homers and 16 RBI. He had a stretch of seven straight multi-hit games. After missing nearly a month earlier in the season because of vertigo, he was just finally getting an opportunity to show that he belongs in the big leagues.
Without a doubt, dynasty owners need to hang on to Nick Senzel. As long as he makes a full recovery in time for spring training, we will see Senzel starting for the Reds next season.
Take a look at what other injuries are affecting Fantasy rosters in the Week 12 Injury Report.
Kyle Tucker, OF, Astros
Kyle Tucker is the Astros’ No. 2 prospect and No. 14 overall in baseball, according to MLB.com. He continues to justify his status as the Astros’ top position prospect. His swing is so beautiful that it was compared in spring to Hall of Famer Ted Williams’. That earned him the nickname “Ted” with his teammates.
In his first taste of Triple-A, Tucker is hitting .288 with a .843 OPS, nine homers, 10 stolen bases, and his 54 RBI are second in the league.
The Astros are looking repeat as World Series champs but have holes in their outfield. Utility man Marwin Gonzalez has played the majority of his games in the outfield but has really disappointed so far this season. He is slashing .257/.331/.398 with a .729 OPS, which is almost 200 points lower than last season’s .907. Josh Reddick is hitting only .241/.328/.382 on the season. Jake Marisnick has been one of the worst regular outfielders in the league. Tony Kemp and obviously George Springer are holding together the Astros outfield.
Kyle Tucker looks like a perennial 20/20 player. He will provide an offensive spark during the playoff run. I don’t think it’s a matter of IF Tucker will be playing in Houston but WHEN will he be playing in the big leagues. He is definitely worth a stash in all Fantasy formats.
Eloy Jimenez, OF, White Sox
Eloy Jimenez, the organization’s No. 1 prospect, per MLB Pipeline, was named the Southern League Player of the Month for May. Jimenez, 21, hit .374 with 11 doubles, six home runs, 25 RBI and 17 runs over 26 games in May with Double-A Birmingham. He led the Southern League in a number of offensive categories during the month of May including OPS (1.082), hits (40), extra-base hits (18), total bases (71), and slugging percentage (.664).
Jimenez put together a 15-game hitting streak from April 26-May 11, the longest in the Southern League this season. He has hit safely in each of his last 12 games entering Sunday.
Despite starting the season on the disabled list, Jimenez ranks among the 2018 Southern League leaders in home runs (10, T-3rd), RBI (42, T- 2nd), and ranks second among qualified Southern League hitters with a .317 batting average this season. He leads the league with a .556 slugging percentage and ranks second in OPS (.925). He was named a Southern League All-Star earlier this month.
So when will we see Eloy Jimenez playing for the White Sox? Sox general manager Rick Hahn told reporters last week that Jimenez would stop at Triple-A Charlotte before being considered for a major-league promotion. It was just announced that Eloy Jimenez got promoted to Triple-A Charlotte!!!
Little Monday morning #ScoopCity on MiLB movement coming up:
Cease, Basabe, Call, Booker up to Birmingham
Eloy, Hamilton, and Seby up to Charlotte after their all star games#TheWhiteSoxAreComing
— whitesoxdave (@barstoolWSD) June 18, 2018
It seems anti-climatic about the inevitable call-up of Jimenez to the big leagues. He is known for his considerable power potential, which is no surprise given his 6-foot-4, 205-pound frame. He owns a career .304 average in the minors and will be the White Sox starting right fielder late this summer.