Prospect Stock Report 6.16.17
June 16, 2017 | Justin Klein
On Wednesday night the Astros walloped the Rangers 13-2 and they did so with large contributions from two of their recently promoted top prospects. Houston’s top prospect Francis Martes started the game and notched his first major league win in his first major league start as he twirled five solid innings where he allowed only one earned run on three hits and two walks while striking out seven. It was indeed a great first start for Martes who had made his major league debut five days earlier in long relief. Francis was whacked around by the Angels in that one as he gave up four earned runs on four hits (including a HR) and four walks while striking out just one in three and two thirds innings pitched. It appears that Martes will remain in the rotation for now, as both Lance McCullers and Dallas Keuchel are on the DL, but its unknown for how long that will be. There is a chance that Martes is kept in relief and likely some sort of hybrid long relief role if that is the case, but if he keeps on pitching like he did on Wednesday he should get more chances to start games. While Francis did not post pretty numbers in Triple-A this season with a 5.19 ERA and 4.63 FIP to go with a 4.15 BB/9 across 32 and 1/3 innings pitched he did post quality numbers in Double-A in 2016 and has tremendous stuff that can play at the front of an MLB rotation. Keep in mind that he’s just 21 years old and could very well have his ups and downs this season. If you need some help with your fake team’s rotation and are willing to take on the both the risk and upside you can kick the tires on Martes in 96% of Yahoo leagues. He is risky, as he could certainly wreck your ratios, but he can also dazzle like he did on Wednesday night. Speaking of Wednesday night another top Astro prospect happened to be making his MLB debut. Derek Fisher started in left field and was slotted eighth in the batting order and boy did he make the most of it. In his first major league game Fisher managed to notch two hits including a HR while scoring two runs and also taking two walks. It was an impressive debut for the 23 year old and I expect that he’s earned some more starts in the near future as Josh Reddick recovers from his concussion. While the Astros have already indicated that a healthy Reddick returning next week likely means that Fisher is sent back down to Triple-A he should continue to impact games in the mean time. This is a kid with power and speed who notched 16 HR and 13 SB in just 60 games at Triple-A this season before being called up. Not only that, but he’s managed to increase his walk rate and decrease his strikeout rate from the previous season while hitting for more power and a higher average. It appears that Fisher’s first taste of the majors will only last a week or so, but you never know with baseball, and if he plays up to his potential right away there’s a chance he carves out a role for himself on the big league club. If you want to bet on the young talent to stay up, or simply ride him while he’s up and playing, you can add him for free right now in 78% of Yahoo leagues.
Matt Chapman has been called up by the Athletics and will likely make his big league debut on Thursday against the Yankees at home in Oakland. Currently available in 97% of Yahoo leagues Chapman should be added immediately in all 15 team and larger leagues as well as keeper leagues, AL only leagues and even in deep roster mixed leagues of 12 teams or more. It’s no surprise that Chapman is being called up now as the super two deadline is perceived as being past and Ryon Healy made two more errors on Wednesday doing a fairly bad impersonation of a big league third baseman. This way the A’s can shift Healy to first base or DH and let Chapman play at third. Matt has a prototypical power profile as he notched 16 HR in just 48 games at Triple-A while posting a .333 ISO before being called up. It’s worth noting that he also managed an OBP of .350 and five stolen bases to go with that pop. His 31% strikeout rate is a bit alarming and could very well be the one thing that holds him back at the big league level. As long as he continues to take walks and hit dingers I’m sure the A’s and his owners in the fake game won’t mind. Because of the high strikeout rate there is a more than small chance that Chapman totally falls on his face and ends up being sent back down to Triple-A. He’s still worth grabbing in every only or deep league format and in most keeper or dynasty formats as well. While his profile is a fairly risky one it comes with a ton of pop and no risk in most instances.
Lewis Brinson was called up and made his major league debut for the Brewers on Sunday the eleventh at Chase Field in Arizona. While he didn’t notch a hit he did work two walks and stole his first base. The next day he got his first big league hit; although he ended that day 1/9 after a day-night doubleheader against the Cardinals. Unfortunately Brinson was on the bench the following day and now we have some doubt as to how much he will play. The fact that Keon Broxton has awoken from his slumber with two HR in three days certainly doesn’t help. That said you can still go and pick up Lewis for free in 77% of Yahoo leagues and he’s still the prospect with the highest fantasy upside this side of Yoan Moncada. Brinson has power and speed that can fill four of the five fantasy categories and he should be playing most days while Ryan Braun and Jonathan Villar are on the shelf. We’ll check back in on Brinson next week, but unless he isn’t ready and fails miserably his defense alone should earn him the lion’s share of playing time and starts in center field for the beer makers of Milwaukee. If he’s still available in your league and it’s not ridiculously shallow you should add him while you can.
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