SEATTLE, WA - JULY 03: Catcher Mike Zunino, the Seattle Mariners' first-round draft choice, warms up during batting practice prior to the game against the Baltimore Orioles at Safeco Field on July 3, 2012 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
With the minor league regular season now over, I am starting to work on my notes and profiles for this offseason's Minor League Keeper Thoughts series. With that in mind, here's my list of prospects who are currently on my mind for my top 15 fantasy prospects. I've listed them by position, and at this point are in no particular order:
Catchers: Travis d'Arnaud (TOR), Mike Zunino (SEA)
Pitchers: Dylan Bundy (BAL), Taijuan Walker (SEA), Jose Fernandez (MIA), Shelby Miller (STL), Gerrit Cole (PIT), Trevor Bauer (ARI), Tyler Skaggs (ARI), Danny Hultzen (SEA), Julio Teheran (ATL), Matt Barnes (BOS)
Is there a prospect not listed here that you think I should take another look at for the top 15? Is there someone here who clearly does not belong with the rest of the prospects listed? Have you already worked out a top 10-15 for your minor league drafts in the coming months? Remember, this is for fantasy purposes, so defense is only a concern in terms of what position they will play in our fantasy lineups. Let's hear your thoughts in the comments.
I have not come up with a specific order yet, but you can read some of my thoughts after the jump...
- For fantasy purposes, I think Lindor will end up getting knocked down just a bit. It's not really as much to do with how he has done, as how many other players will end up in front of him. A lot of his value for the Indians is tied into his ability to play shortstop long-term.
- It's going to be extremely difficult after seeing him do well in AA not to want to place Billy Hamilton at the top of the list simply because of the fact that he could win you stolen bases each season. Remember, this is for fantasy purposes, not his real-life value to his organization. The speed will play regardless of what position it ends up at, so long as he hits.
- Can you really go wrong with either of the two top outfielders in the minors right now in Myers and Taveras? Both are locks for me to end up at least in the top 5 overall, and probably higher.
- I really, really like what I have seen out of Mike Zunino so far for the Mariners, and am honestly curious if he ends up as the starting catcher out of Spring Training for them next season.
- The only player who might surpass the standard rookie limits this year on this list is Manny Machado, who already has 88 at bats in the Majors and seems fairly likely to blow past 130 before the season is out.
- Nolan Arenado has been hitting better of late, but it's been a very odd season for him, and I don't know how much more we will learn from his performance in the minors. I would guess that he will be sent to AAA Colorado Springs to start next season.