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Top 10 AL Central Prospects for 2017

Today, we wrap up our look at the Top 10 prospects for 2017 in each of the six leagues. The lists were created by blending potential playing time, MLB-readiness and overall skill to take a stab at predicting the most valuable rookies for the coming season.

NL East
NL West
NL Central
AL West
AL East

Top 10 Prospects for 2017: AL Central

1. Lucas Giolito, RHP, Chicago: Giolito’s value is down right now – along with his velocity — but he’s still one of the most promising near-MLB-ready arms in the minors. I will admit, though, that I doubt the White Sox’s ability to develop prospects and I’d feel a lot better if the right-hander was still in the Nationals system. When he’s going well, Giolito has both a plus fastball and a plus curveball. His changeup, when it’s on, can also be an above-average offering, meaning he has more than enough weapons to dominate big league hitters. With a pretty thin starting rotation at the big league level, the wheels will really have to fall off of Giolito’s bandwagon for him to not see a big league mound by the summer.

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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 446 – Making a Judgment Call

4/15/17

The latest episode of “The Sleeper and the Bust” is brought to you by Out of the Park Baseball 18, the best baseball strategy game ever made – available NOW on PC, Mac, and Linux platforms! Go to ootpdevelopments.com to order now and save 10% with the code SLEEPER18!

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Notable Transactions/Rumors/Articles/Game Play (12:00)

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Paul Sporer Baseball Chat – April 14th, 2017

We went over four hours! Lots of pickup and “slow start” chatter. I’m not really worried about any top 15ish round picks so far, but definitely open to making moves on late rounders who are meant to be churned.

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Old Pitchers With Fresh Starts: McCarthy, Lynn, Ryu, & Anderson

This post on old broken men comes via Mario Mendoza when he asked about a few pitchers.

While I won’t cover all the pitchers today, McCarthy and Ryu intrigue me because they’ve been productive in the past but injuries cost them most of last season. While not listed, Lance Lynn and Brett Anderson fall in the same category. As a group, they averaged 15 IP in 2016. Here is a quick take on all four.

Brandon McCarthy (Dodgers)

Wow, I hope the other pitchers will be easier to analyze. McCarthy has been consistently inconsistent. I will start with the basics. His fastball’s averaging 93.2 mph. He’s been at this higher velocity the last four seasons after averaging around 90 mph before 2014.

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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 445 – I DO Think So, Tim

4/13/17

The latest episode of “The Sleeper and the Bust” is brought to you by Out of the Park Baseball 18, the best baseball strategy game ever made – available NOW on PC, Mac, and Linux platforms! Go to ootpdevelopments.com to order now and save 10% with the code SLEEPER18!

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Notable Transactions/Rumors/Articles/Game Play

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Bullpen Report: April 11, 2017

Another Sam Dyson meltdown has everyone running to their waiver wires, but for who? Matt Bush is the fantasy favorite with a 97 mph and gaudy strikeout rate (26% since the start of 2016), but he’s getting an exam on the AC joint in his right shoulder and will be out for at least a few days. I tend to believe Jeremy Jeffress is the next-in-line even with a healthy Bush after notching 27 saves last year, but he lost the game after Dyson blew it on Tuesday night and has allowed runs in three of his five outing, so it’s not like he’s instilling a ton of confidence in manager Jeff Banister right now, either. We haven’t gotten much from Banister himself, though this non-committal comment from Evan Grant’s piece suggests it’s under review:

“We’ll evaluate all our options,” manager Jeff Banister said when asked about the closer situation.

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Mixing Fantasy & Reality: Foltynewicz, Galvis, & Souza

Quick Look: Mike Foltynewicz

The people spoke and I watched Foltynewicz’s start this past Friday.

I’ve seen him throw previously and nothing has changed. He’s got a hard straight fastball and owners seems to be hoping one or more of his non-slider breaking pitches eventually play up. I only tracked his progress for the first two or so innings and quit once the rain at the game started coming down. Here’s what I saw.

Fastball (Grade 55): 92-97. Straight. Some rise. Heavy early use. The ball comes in fast and sometimes leaves even faster.

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Top 10 AL East Prospects for 2017

Today, we continue our look at the Top 10 prospects for 2017 in each of the six leagues. The lists have been created by blending potential playing time, MLB-readiness and overall skill to take a stab at predicting the most valuable rookies for the coming season. Recently, we reviewed the NL East, the NL West, the NL Central, and the AL West.

Top 10 Prospects for 2017: AL East
 
1. Andrew Benintendi, OF, Boston: Benintendi has already received a lot of press and is easily the favorite for AL Rookie of the Year. He already has 34 games of big league experience under his belt and has yet to look fazed. He’s hit well and shown promise in the field. Benintendi is not a huge guy but he’s shown extra base pop and could eventually threaten 20 homers to go along with his 30-40 doubles in a full season. He should also regularly come close to producing a .400 on-base percentage with his ability to hit for average and tendency to walk more than he strikes out. He’s going to be a beast and reminds me of Mike Greenwell in his prime.

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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 444 – Spending a Bundle for Bundy

4/8/17

The latest episode of “The Sleeper and the Bust” is brought to you by Out of the Park Baseball 18, the best baseball strategy game ever made – available NOW on PC, Mac, and Linux platforms! Go to ootpdevelopments.com to order now and save 10% with the code SLEEPER18! 

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Leading Off:

  • How’d those Charlotte Knights look?

Notable Transactions/Rumors/Articles/Game Play

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Top 10 AL West Prospects for 2017

Today, we continue our look at the Top 10 prospects for 2017 in each of the six leagues. The lists have been created by blending potential playing time, MLB-readiness and overall skill to take a stab at predicting the most valuable rookies for the coming season. Recently, we reviewed the NL East, the NL West and the NL Central.

Top 10 Prospects for 2017: AL West

1. Jharel Cotton, RHP, Oakland: Acquired from the Dodgers last year as part of the return for Josh Reddick, Cotton has made huge development leaps since the beginning of 2016. After bouncing between the bullpen and starting rotation in the Dodgers system, Cotton has settled into the rotation with the A’s and looks like a steal. He has a low-to-mid-90s fastball and backs it up with a plus changeup. If he can improve his breaking ball and continue to show good control, he has a chance to really thrive in his big home ballpark (He got tagged for 24 homers in ’16). After throwing 165 innings last year, he could be good for 180+ although the club will want to be cautious with the modestly-built pitcher.

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