Prospect Stock Watch: Chapman, Hollon, Mateo, Reed

Today at the Prospect Stock Watch, we’re looking at some players that could enter The Show in 2016 or 2017 and develop into impact performers.

Matt Chapman, 3B, Athletics: Oakland has focused on drafting college hitters in the upper rounds of the draft in recent years and Chapman was the club’s first pick in 2014. In just his first full pro season, the third baseman has shown outstanding pop in the potent California League with a .587 OPS in 77 games (helped by 23 home runs); considering home run potential was a question mark for him entering pro ball this season has to be very encouraging for the A’s. With offseason trade acquisition Brett Lawrie producing modest results at the hot corner (and even spending some time at second base recently), the club may be eager to help erase memories of the Josh Donaldson trade — and Chapman could very well help do that. He might need another full season in the minors but this slugger — and above-average hitter — could make a real impact in Oakland once he’s ready for The Show. [Value Up]

Clint Hollon, RHP, Blue Jays: The Jays dealt away a huge chunk of their pitching stable (mostly southpaws) during the trade deadline while acquiring the likes of Troy Tulowitzki, David Price, LaTroy Hawkins, Mark Lowe, and Ben Revere. The impressive depth in the system, though, ensured that the Jays aren’t without pitching prospects — most of them are just in the low minors. Hollon, 20, is one of those impressive prospects. A second rounder in 2013, he slid in the draft due to concerns over his makeup an elbow injury that eventually led to Tommy John surgery. He appeared in just six games in 2013 and then missed all of 2014 but he’s looked strong in his return in ’15. He opened the year in extended spring training and then the Northwest League. He made his first appearance in Low-A ball (full season ball) on Wednesday night and allowed just one hit in 7.0 innings and induced 10 ground-ball outs. [Value Up]

Jorge Mateo, SS, Yankees: Are you ready for the next Billy Hamilton. I mean, the guy everyone THOUGHT Hamilton was? Mateo is a top-of-the-scale runner who has much more feel for hitting than the Reds shortstop-turned-centerfielder who wowed scouts and fans alike by stealing more than 100 bases in the minors on two separate occasions. Hamilton has been unable to duplicate that success in the Majors due to low on-base rates but that shouldn’t be as big of a problem for the Yankees’ prospect (although he doesn’t walk a ton due to strong hand-eye and improving pitch recognition). The big thing to remember with Mateo is to be patient. He just recently moved from Low-A ball to High-A ball during his first taste of full-season ball. It’s understandable why the Yankees were hesitant to move Mateo in a deadline deal. [Value Up]

A.J. Reed, 1B, Astros: Like the Blue Jays, the Astros mortgaged a good chunk of their future to acquire established, veteran talent to take a stab at making the playoffs. The club’s deep system, though, ensured that there is still a lot of premium talent in the minors — especially at the plate. Reed opened the year in High-A ball — in the California League, a notorious hitters league. He posted a 1.088 OPS in 82 games before earning a promotion to Double-A. In 23 games at that level, he’s continued to rake with another five home runs (for a total of 28 on the year) and has a .092 OPS. The big league Astros have trotted out a three-headed monster at first base in 2015 with Chris Carter, Luis Valbuena and Jon Singleton, and, despite the home runs (38 between the trio), have been very unproductive. Reed, 22, should be ready to take over the bag at some point in 2016 and Singleton is probably no longer the first baseman of the future in Houston. [Value Up]





Marc Hulet has been writing at FanGraphs since 2008. His work focuses on prospects and fantasy. Follow him on Twitter @marchulet.

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Derpy Dog
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Derpy Dog

“I mean, the guy everyone THOUGHT Hamilton was?”

How about : I mean, the guy everyone HOPED Hamilton was?

Besides base running, a lot of people were down on his ability to hit and never saw more than a 4th OFer.

Mario Mendoza
Member
Member
Mario Mendoza

Only the enlightened few. The colloquial “Everyone” was drinking the proverbial “Koolaid.”

danny c
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danny c

i would love to have a 2-3 win centerfielder as my 4th OFer

George Matthew
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George Matthew

irrelevant. He couldn’t stick at SS, try to keep up.

Derpy Dog
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Derpy Dog

You can, Rajai Davis, Peter Bourjos, Chris Denorfia, Brock Holt, Brandon Guyer,Scott Van Slyke,the entire Angels outfield not named Mike Trout…

Derpy Dog
Guest
Derpy Dog

Oops you qualified it as CFer. Oh well.

Emanredsfan
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Emanredsfan

Not that it really matters, but Hamilton slashed .311/.410/.420 between a+ and aa. His hittin issues really didn’t become a big deal until aaa.