Author Archive

Prospect Mock Draft Strategy and Analysis

Not to long ago Jason Catania, Mike Newman and I took part in Fake Teams’ Expert Mock Prospect Draft. The rules contemplated a thirteen team league using the traditional 5×5 statistics. I followed my strategy, detailed below, and wouldn’t change a single pick. Read the rest of this entry »

Prospect Help: Home Runs

The last two weeks we had good discussions about prospects best suited to help you in batting average and stolen bases. This week, we’ll be discussing HOME RUNS. As a reminder, I won’t be talking about draft position, ottoneu, or auction prices and because these discussions are more complex than I initially though, I’m abandoning the rigid No Doubt, Overrated, and Sleeper categories and going with a typical straight ranking from now on. Read the rest of this entry »

Prospect Help: Stolen Bases

As I stated last week, I will be changing the layout of my posts until the start of the season to give you more practical fantasy advice for the upcoming season. I won’t be talking about draft position, ottoneu, or auction prices, rather I’ll breakdown which prospects can help your team in each of the traditional fantasy categories. Each week I’ll give you my No Doubt, Overrated, and Sleeper picks. Read the rest of this entry »

Prospects Help: Batting Average

You’ve probably grown accustomed to long prospect profiles in my Friday morning spot, but I will be changing the layout of my posts until the start of the season to give you more practical fantasy advice for the upcoming season. I won’t be talking about draft position, ottoneu, or auction prices, rather I’ll breakdown which prospects can help your team in each of the traditional fantasy categories. Each week I’ll give you No Doubt, Overrated, and Sleeper picks.

Today, I’m starting with BATTING AVERAGE. Remember, I’m not evaluating a player’s prospect status. I’m discussing their ability to affect a single statistical category in 2013 relative to expectations.

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What to make of Travis d’Arnaud

This week the Mets exchanged Cy Young award winner R.A. Dickey for Blue Jays catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud (pronounced dar-no). The deal is logical for two teams moving in opposite directions. While the merit of the Blue Jays’ off-season moves are not above reproach, the Mets are in no position to compete in 2013 as evidenced by their attempt to field a team without a single outfielder. But, that’s of little consequence to us here at RotoGraphs. Here, we want to know who Travis d’Arnaud is and how this trade affects the prospect Comrade Newman called the best catcher prospect he has ever seen. Read the rest of this entry »

Winter Meeting Prospect Thoughts

The Winter Meetings are fun! So many rumors, so much inaction. Alas, there were several prospects outside the Rule 5 draft who were moved or rumored to move who are worth discussing. Of course, I can’t discuss them all, but if you’re interested in a player I’ll field questions in the comments.  Read the rest of this entry »

Trade Your Prospects

A big fuss has been made over the Royals considering dealing their top prospect, Wil Myers, for starting pitching help. And the fuss is for good reason. On the field, Jeff Francoeur’s totally unexpected demise left the Royals with a gaping hole to fill in right field. That reality coupled with owner David Glass’s frugalness – read the second half of this excellent bifurcated piece by Rany Jazayerli – has left many wondering why the Royals would trade almost seven seasons of a potential all-star right fielder for two years of an aging pitcher with a mortgage. But, the game played on natural grass is far different from the one that requires a username and password. Today, I’m here to tell you trading your prospects isn’t only okay, it’s encouraged in many formats. Read the rest of this entry »

Shake Up Leads to Opportunities in Miami

The Marlins decision to overturn the majority of their roster on this week created ample opportunity for their minor leaguers to help your fantasy team earlier than expected.

In the outfield Giancarlo Stanton is the sole survivor of the team’s firesale leaving gapping holes center and left field. Top hitting prospect Christian Yelich will start the year at Double-A Jacksonville and his progression to be the Marlin’s everyday leftfielder will face little resistance. One can expect Yelich to post a high batting average, more than a dozen steals and moderate power. He’s an excellent player that fantasy owners in nontraditional leagues will love. I’m very high on Yelich and if it weren’t for the homerun suppression in Miami I would predict him to be a 25 homerun guy down the road. His swing is that pretty.

The best prospect the team received from Toronto was Jake Marisnick. Marisnick profiles best in a corner but their players’ lack of defensive ability has rarely stopped the Marlins from getting their bats in the lineup (See, Morrison and Coghlan). Marisnick struggled mightily in 247 Double-AA plate appearances so I expect him to return to Double-AA as Jacksonville’s centerfielder. However, he did play well in the Arizona Fall League so while its unlikely it wouldn’t be out of the question for Marisnick to breaks camp with the Fins. Ultimately, I question how good he will be. He’ll be playing outside his optimal position in a park the suppresses power. In addition to his general athleticism, power is his best attribute but his hit tool is lacking, leaving me questioning his ability to tap into his power.

The final outfielder stationed in Jacksonville will be Marcell Ozuna. I haven’t seen Ozuna play so it’s hard to comment on him other than saying his power could be very enticing to the punchless Marlins.

The Marlins could go in many different directions for their new infield but I expect Yunel Esobar to play shortstop and the recently signed Kevin Kouzmanoff to play third. Kouzmanoff, 30, is hardly special so he’ll face pressure from former first rounder Zack Cox. Cox was a standout at the University of Arkansas but I’ve long been on record as one who doubts his ability. Still, he has far more upside than Kouzmanoff if he can put things together.

This trade left the quality of the Marlins’ rotation in shambles. Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle were swapped out for Henderson Alvarez, leaving the rotation will little depth and experience. Top prospect Jose Fernandez wasn’t challenged during his short Jupiter stint so he too should be in Jacksonville. The Fish will cap his innings somewhere below the 165 mark but he could provide a very boost to your August and September statistics should be as impressive as many predict him to be.

Watching Justin Nicolino this year I saw a deceptive lefty with good control but not an impact fantasy asset. His upside is a number three starter but I project a back of the rotation innings eater. Helpful for the Marlins, not so much for you.

There are many other prospects who were affected by this deal too but there isn’t enough space to discuss them all. With so much youth and uncertainty on this roster fantasy owners should keep a close eye on the Marlins and similar teams.

Are the Stars in the Arizona Fall League Fading?

The Arizona Fall League as long been considered prospect finishing school. Most recently uber-talented youngsters Mike Trout and Bryce Harper decimated the pitching-light league prior to ascending to Triple-A and then the Major Leagues. But the 2012 crop in Arizona doesn’t feel as talented as previous years had. Is the talent level in the league dropping?

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What is going on with Julio Teheran?

This season was rough for Julio Teheran after he scorched the minors in his first four seasons. Relying on a mid-90s fastball Teheran punished the lower leagues before making the jump to Triple-A in 2011 and earning the International League’s MVP award. But, after posting a 5.08 ERA in 2012 the question on fantasy owners’ minds is whether he’ll regain his past form. To try to answer this question I watched 5 games from the past year starting with his blow up start in Buffalo on May 17. Read the rest of this entry »