Baseball America's Prospect Hot Sheet is up and has a large infusion of A- and Rookie-ball players. For my purposes, I am looking towards the September roster expansion and the possibilities of nabbing 2008 keepers on the cheap. Click through for an update on A-ball prospects Travis Snyder, Eric Lis, Drew Stubbs, etc. There is also an update on the disappointing seasons of 18-years-olds Jose Tabata, Fernando Martinez ans Elvis Andrus.
I included Rangers' 3B Chris Davis on the news that 3B Hank Blalock is behind in his rehab from shoulder issues. With Ramon Vasquez at 3B, I could see the organization rewarding Davis with a September recall and some regular ABs, and he'd be worth grabbing some a minimal FAAB bid in hopes he impresses enough to lead to a Blalock deal in the off-season. Even if he did not, a Blalock trade is still sensible.
3. Joey Votto, 1b/of, Triple-A Louisville (Reds)
Votto hit .360/.407/1.000 last week, cracking an IL-leading five home runs and 12 RBIs in six games. The Reds also have positioned the 23-year-old in left field as much as his natural position of first base this month, though he's an average-at-best defender at both spots.
6. Chris Davis, 3b, Double-A Frisco (Rangers)
The 21-year-old 2006 fifth-round pick has made a quick impression on Texas League pitchers in the 17 games since his promotion from high Class A Bakersfield. Davis is hitting .356/.443/.831 with eight home runs and 19 RBIs in 59 at-bats. Davis has six multi-hit games, including a two-homer outing on Aug. 13. Strikeouts remain an issue for Davis. He has 16 whiffs with Frisco after striking out 123 times in 386 at-bats with Bakersfield.
7. Steven Pearce, 1b, Triple-A Indianapolis (Pirates)
The 24-year-old continues to crush as he's climbed from high Class to Double-A to Triple-A, hitting an aggregate .340/.404/.649 with 31 home runs in 111 RBIs on the year. In August, the 5-foot-11, 200-pound slugger has turned it up a notch, hitting .347/.397/.681 with six homers. A big reason for Pearce's breakout is improved contact skills: He's fanned in 15 percent of his at-bats this season, compared to 20 percent in 2006.
8. Aaron Laffey, lhp, Triple-A Buffalo (Indians)
Go ahead and pencil in Laffey's name next to Jack Cressend's. With his win Sunday, the 22-year-old became just the second Buffalo pitcher in the franchise's modern history to reel off nine victories in a row. Cressend did the same in 2004. Though he went just 1-1, 5.73 in two big league starts, Laffey's August has been spectacular otherwise. He's gone 2-0, 1.93 with 13-4 K-BB and a stunning 5.20 groundout-to-fly out ratio for Buffalo.