We're starting to see teams become more clearly delineated into competing and selling this year, with 12 teams already at least five or more games back in the Wild Card standings through Saturday's games. As teams start to align their own view on their chances with how the standings show them, we should see even more sellers and more top prospects being called up down the line. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the top 10 fantasy prospects still in the minors who can help in redraft leagues this year.
Graduates (Call Up Article)
Mallex Smith - Called up in Week 1
Nomar Mazara - Called up in Week 1
Aaron Blair - Called up in Week 2
Jose Berrios - Called up in Week 3
Sean Manaea - Called up in Week 3
Julio Urias - Called up in Week 8
Tim Anderson - Called up in Week 9
These rankings are based solely on their potential 2016 value, and do not include take into account their long-term value for dynasty leagues.
#1 - Trea Turner, SS, Nationals (Last Week: 1)
We saw an indicator of what can be possible from Turner in his brief call up last week, as he had a three hit game in his only start before returning to AAA. Danny Espinosa is up to 10 home runs on the season, and is hitting .214/.300/.393 for the division-leading Nationals.
#2 - Jameson Taillon, RHP, Pirates (LW: 3 / Call-Up)
#3 - Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Pirates (LW: 2)
The Pirates brought Jameson Taillon up for his major league debut last week, who gave up three earned in six innings on Wednesday. The Pirates optioned him back to AAA following the start, which was an expected outcome, but it may not be a long stay there. Gerrit Cole left his start on Friday early due to shoulder tightness, and the Pirates may need a starter on Wednesday to take his spot. The Pirates will also need a fifth starter next Saturday, so we could see both pitchers this week.
#4 - Aaron Judge, OF, Yankees (LW: 7)
Judge has been on a tear this month at AAA, hitting .317/.440/.463 with a home run in 11 games. Even more promising is the 9:7 strikeout-to-walk ratio in that time frame. The Yankees are currently 5.5 games out in the AL East with three teams ahead of them, and at some point they will likely want to start bringing up some of these prospects if they believe they are out of the race.
#5 - Blake Snell, LHP, Rays (LW: 9)
The only team who is currently behind the Yankees in the AL East standings is the Rays, who have fallen 7.5 games back and 5 back in the Wild Card. Michael Schwarz recently wrote about Snell's most recent start, a dominant 13 strikeout performance on Friday, and the Rays could have some of the best starting pitchers available before the trade deadline if they decide to move them.
#6 - Joe Musgrove, RHP, Astros (LW: 6)
Musgrove has gotten lit up in his last two starts, allowing 10 earned runs in 11 innings against Albuquerque and El Paso, but he remains the most likely option for a call up should an opening in the rotation present itself. Current starter Doug Fister has pitched well lately, and could be a trade candidate if the Astros opt to start selling.
#7 - Manuel Margot, OF, Padres (LW: NR)
The Padres began their selling process with the trade of James Shields last week, and with another of their trade candidates (Andrew Cashner) hitting the disabled list this week, that process could move even faster. Margot is likely to be the beneficiary if Jon Jay is traded, and could provide a high stolen base total in a short amount of time.
#8. A.J. Reed, 1B, Astros (LW: 5)
Reed moves down in part due to the fact that Reed is not hitting well at AAA, and also due to the fact that while he's not hitting much better, Jon Singleton has been hitting for power at AAA and is already on the 40-man roster.
#9. Cody Reed, LHP, Reds (LW: NR)
It sounds like the Reds have been ready to start making changes in their rotation, and Reed could be the beneficiary. Reed has emerged as one of the top prospects in their system since being acquired last summer, and can provide solid mid-rotation performance if he’s called up.
10. Nick Williams, OF, Phillies (LW: 8)
Williams drops on the list not because of his performance (an excellent .324/.366/.622 in June), but because with the team falling to 9 games back in the division, I think there's less likelihood he gets called up soon. Since the category Williams would help the most in (batting average) requires more time to provide a significant impact, his overall value drops ever so much.
Dropped from List: Jose Berrios, RHP, Twins (LW: 10)
Berrios falls off the list due to his up-and-down performance at AAA (he had an 11 strikeout game but also allowed 5 earned in a different start. With the Twins going nowhere this year, the incentive for the Twins is to let Berrios continue to work on that consistency in Rochester.