Prospect Stock Watch: Moncada, Zagunis, Hoffman

Today at the Prospect Stock Watch we take a look at two well-known prospects and another (Cubs) player that I think people should know more about.

Yoan Moncada | 2B | Red Sox
ETA: 2017
Value: Sizzling

Moncada is already one of the better-known prospects in baseball so I won’t bore you with his background. Just 21, this Cuban native is close to a five-tool talent — although he’s probably just an average defender. At the plate, he hasn’t tapped into his raw power with just seven home runs in 75 games but the 28 doubles and five triples hint at the over-the-fence pop yet to come. As well, he’s a good runner with solid instincts and has already nabbed 39 bases this season. He’s a potential 20-20 threat as a big leaguer. With the young prospect on a collision course with the Majors in 2017 it will be interesting to see where Boston plays Moncada.

Mark Zagunis | OF | Cubs
ETA: 2017
Value: Steady

Much like Kyle Schwarber, Zagunis was drafted out of college as a catcher and moved into the outfield as a pro. And while the latter is nowhere near the prospect that the former is, he’s a better prospect and hitter than most people realize. After opening the year in double-A, the 23-year-old outfielder has moved up to triple-A and has looked solid. Admittedly, his value took a big hit in the move from catcher to the corner outfield and the lack of home-run pop also hurts. However, Zagunis controls the strike zone well and has solid gap power (28 of his 87 hits have gone for doubles or triples — with another seven leaving the yard). There might be too much depth in front of Zagunis in Chicago but an astute organization might be able to pry him loose around the trade deadline.

Jeff Hoffman | RHP | Rockies
ETA: 2016
Value: Steady

Hoffman, 23, had a chance to go first overall in the 2014 draft but an elbow injury dropped him to the Jays at ninth overall (still very respectable). He was then the key return for the Rockies in the Troy Tulowitzki deal. Hoffman has spent the 2016 in triple-A with modest — and hardly awe-inspiring — results. His biggest issue is the lack of consistent fastball command that has resulted in too many walks, too many fly balls and too many home runs. If he can find a consistent feel, he has the stuff to dominate — including a mid-to-high-90s fastball and solid breaking ball. He could get a taste of The Show in 2016 but he won’t be ready for a full-time gig until 2017. If he wants to realize his full potential, Hoffman may need to find a way to induce more ground balls.





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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Daniel
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Daniel

Should be noted that Hoffman is pitching in Albuquerque which is a bit higher than Coors and a worse death for typical pitchers. In fact his splits for ERA are 6.02 at home, 2.43 on the road.