Promotion Watch: Mike Stanton

With Jason Heyward eating medium leverage situations for breakfast in the big leagues, and Jesus Montero still trying to find his way as a 20-year-old in Triple, the Marlins’ Mike Stanton has grabbed the crown as the “best hitter in the minor leagues” and run away with it. The 20-year-old outfielder smacked three homeruns yesterday afternoon, giving him five within the last 30 hours or so. His ISO stands at .462 this morning, and his walk rate has risen up to match his usually high strikeout rate in the early going. Obviously, small sample size warnings apply.

After a 341 plate appearance cameo with Florida’s Double-A affiliate last year (.344 wOBA), they sent him back there this year, but if he keeps doing what he’s doing now (.495 wOBA by my calculation), it’s won’t be long before they bump him up to Triple-A. Once that happens, it’s only a matter of time before he surfaces with the big league team.

Chris Coghlan has yet to find the BABIP magic he had during his Rookie of the Year campaign last season, and his wOBA sits at just .182. Cameron Maybin is a bit iffy with concussion-like symptoms after colliding with teammate Gaby Sanchez, though he did suit up last night. The Marlins certainly have some need for another outfielder, but whether or not they decide to promote their best prospect will probably end up being a matter of future payroll.

Since the season is already more than two weeks old, Stanton’s free agency has already been pushed back bya year. However, if the Marlins wanted to push back his arbitration years before calling him up, they would have to wait until the end of May, which doesn’t help us fantasy owners any.

If there’s any prospect in the game that could come up and have a Ryan Braun-like impact in the second half as a rookie, it’s Stanton. He might not hit for average right away (or ever), but the power is off the charts (.283 ISO in the minors), and the RBI opportunities will be there with guys like Hanley Ramirez, Dan Uggla, and Sanchez (.399 combined OBP) in the lineup. Stanton is still available in all most leagues, and if you have a particularly deep bench, or are willing to carry a dead spot for a month, then by all means go out and grab him before the rush. Otherwise, keep an Florida’s outfield situation over the next few weeks, and get ready to pounce once they appear to have a need. He’s an option in all leagues.

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Mike writes about the Yankees at River Ave. Blues and baseball in general at CBS Sports.

7 Responses to “Promotion Watch: Mike Stanton”

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  1. The A Team says:

    Shh…I’ve been trying to get a rival owner to cut him.

    I’m still dubious that the Marlins would promote him this year. It doesn’t seem as though they’re playing for anything but .500 again so why not wait until 2 weeks into 2011? Holding him back is easy enough.

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    • drew says:

      i agree with “the a team”, i am skeptical that he is going to get called up any earlier than september, with 2 weeks into next year more likely. he’s still in AA and cody ross and chris coghlan may be playing poorly right now, but it’s not like they are bad players.

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  2. Gary says:

    We should all preach patience about 20 year olds
    And I do agree that Florida seems fine at OF for the minute
    Florida is a player development machine, I assume they know better than to call the 20 year old up.
    I don’t express this opinion because I got burned by 17 minutes in attempting to pick up Stanton yesterday.

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  3. Paul says:

    Don’t you see them calling up Peterson before Stanton if they just need an OFer? I know he’s a monster in the minors, but throwing the Ryan Braun tag on him, especially in terms of immediate impact, is a bit much. Either you’re way too optimistic about a 20 year old who is showing professional batting skills for the first time in his life, or the Hebrew Hammer is being misunderestimated yet again. Maybe both.

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  4. Bernie Brewer says:

    Disagree with all of the comments.

    The Marlins, more than any team in baseball, knows that you can win a World Series, not by being great all season long, but by having a collection of talent playing great for a brief stretch. Also, this is an organization that won its most recent world series (yes they have won 2) after aggressively calling up not one but two young prospects from AA ball. M Cabrera and D Willis.

    The Marlins are my deep sleeper for making a World Series run THIS YEAR. With two aces, an improved pen and loads of young talent, arguably the best player in the game not named Pujols, it is certainly possible coming out of the NL.

    I expect to see not only Stanton but L Morrison and maybe an arm called up at some point.

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  5. OzzieGuillen says:

    I love Stanton’s power, but his strikeout rate is too high. I could see him having major contact issues if he were promoted this season, just like Chris Davis has had. Ryan Braun’s minor league K/AB was below 20%, while Stanton and Davis are over 25%.

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  6. randylolsen says:

    I agree with Bernie Brewer, not only will Stanton be up this year it will happen in the next 4 weeks if he keeps hitting.

    BUSTER OLNEY agrees… check out his blog on April 30th.

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