Has anything changed? Kaleb Cowart

Kaleb Cowart - USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Nielsen examines the current status of Angels 3B prospect Kaleb Cowart.

For the basics on Angels 3B Kaleb Cowart, check out Craig Goldstein's pieces from last season:

http://www.faketeams.com/2012/3/13/2863550/prospect-preview-kaleb-cowart

http://www.faketeams.com/2012/12/11/3752004/prospect-profile-kaleb-cowart-los-angeles-angels-anaheim-fantasy-baseball

What has his performance been like?

Kaleb Cowart performed decently in a A and High-A last season, compiling a .276/.358/.452 line. He displayed decent power and speed with 16 HR and 14 SB in 135 games. Cowart struggled in the AFL. He compiled a 23.5 K% in AFL after displaying a 21.3 K% at High-A (both well above his 15.2 K% at A-Ball).

What is his current status?

Cowart is having a terrible season at AA thus far. He is hitting just .220 with a 19:50 K:BB and only 3 HR in 218 at-bats. Cowart is definitely having problems adjusting to the superior pitching but it's worth noting that his .220 average can partially be attributed to his .269 BABIP, well below his career norm. Cowart is a switch-hitter and although it's a small sample size it seems he is having a lot of his trouble against RHP. He's hitting .311/.380/.467 in 45 AB against LHP and just .197/.258/.277 in 173 AB against RHP.

What can we expect moving forward?

I think that Cowart still holds very good value as a fantasy prospect. If he can be had for cheap in your dynasty or cheaper league then he's still worth investing in. Cowart gave many the feeling that a true offensive breakout could be imminent but he has fell way short of expectations. Unless he quickly figures something out against RHP he's likely going to need a lot more seasoning in the upper minors. I wouldn't expect to see him in MLB before late 2014 or 2015. Once he arrives in MLB Cowart probably won't be a starting 3B candidate in 10 or 12 team leagues but he can certainly be useful. Although he is hitting LHP better it's worth noting that he steals most of his bases against RHP. This will hurt his chances of being some type of amazing platoon option for fantasy if it comes down to that, which it should not. Cowart still has time to make adjustments and with a little better luck he could have a really solid second half this year although I doubt the breakout that some were dreaming about is on the horizon. A .275 hitter with 15 HR a year and 10-12 SB seems like a reasonable scenario and will carry some value from the 3B position, especially in deeper formats or AL-only leagues.

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