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2013 Draft Prep: Top 50 Fantasy prospects

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

This isn't like other top prospect lists.

What would be the point? If you wanted to know which prospects were the best -- in terms of ceiling, projectability, etc. -- you wouldn't turn to some dopey Fantasy writer with exactly zero scouting experience.

But if you wanted to know which of those prospects were on the verge of making a worthwhile Fantasy contribution, then yeah, that dopey Fantasy writer might just have something to contribute on the matter.

Fantasy owners assess prospects differently from everyone else. They don't just care about the end result. They care about proximity. They care about opportunity. They care about the next big thing, not the next to the next to the next.

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Don't misunderstand: This list isn't all about 2013. Because most of our readers play in single-season leagues, it's mostly about 2013, but any discussion of prospects has keeper implications as well. And really, even owners in single-season leagues have some passing interest in what's down the pipeline.

In other words, some of the more distant prospects are represented here, just differently than you'd normally see them represented. If they're not expected to contribute in 2013, they drop a few spots. If they're not expected to contribute until, say, 2016, they drop more than a few spots -- potentially even off the list.

Fear not, Bubba Starling fans. The 20-year-old Royals outfielder will have his day. Just not today, because today, he's not one of the 50 prospects most worth knowing in Fantasy ... even if he's one of the 50 best.

Get it?

If marrying the long- and short-term philosophies is too much of a brain strain for you, then if nothing else, you can zero in on the short-term. Each prospect gets a 2013 Fantasy impact rating that corresponds to the scale on the right.

Fantasy impact scale
1. No chance
2. In case of disaster
3. If he moves fast
4. September call-up
5. Second-half reinforcement
6. Mid-season hopeful
7. Sooner than later
8. Fighting this spring
9. Pencil him in
10. Opening Day lock

Of course, you'll still want to weigh that rating against the player's ranking. An eight for Wil Myers should matter more to you on Draft Day than an eight for Darin Ruf. But I would think that's obvious.

1. Wil Myers, OF, Rays
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (12/10/90)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: .314 BA, 37 HR, 109 RBI, .987 OPS, 61 BBs, 140 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
Myers didn't get his shot with the Royals, but his numbers suggest he'll be an instant success. The Rays talk like they want him in the minors to start out, but he'll be up as soon as they realize Luke Scott isn't going to cut it. So, like, in a week or two.

2. Jurickson Profar, 2B, Rangers
Bats: Both | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (2/20/93)
2012 Levels: Double-A, majors
Minor-league stats: .281 BA, 14 HR, 16 SBs, .820 OPS, 66 BBs, 79 Ks
Major-league stats: .176 BA (17 at-bats), 1 HR, 0 BBs, 4 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 7
Seeing as the Rangers don't have an opening for him, Profar's upside and favorable eligibility might make him the teensiest bit overvalued in single-season leagues. Still, of all the players on this list, he's the most likely to develop into a first-rounder someday.

3. Shelby Miller, SP, Cardinals
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (10/10/90)
2012 Levels: Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 11-10, 4.74 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, 160 Ks, 136 2/3 IP
Major-league stats: 1-0, 1.32 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 16 Ks, 13 2/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 9
Miller's minor-league numbers look kind of icky, but a mechanical adjustment and improved pitch selection helped him regain his top prospect standing with a 2.88 ERA over his final 10 starts. He had a shot at winning a rotation spot even before Chris Carpenter's injury. Now, he's a near lock.

4. Travis d'Arnaud, C, Mets
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 24 (2/10/89)
2012 Levels: Triple-A
Minor-league stats: .333 BA (279 at-bats), 16 HR, .975 OPS, 19 BBs, 59 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
The Blue Jays wouldn't have traded d'Arnaud for less than a Cy Young winner. Had he not torn a knee ligament last June -- preventing his certain promotion -- they might not have traded him at all. He's as well-rounded of a hitter as you'll find at the catcher position, and only John Buck stands in his way.

5. Dylan Bundy, SP, Orioles
Bats: Both | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (11/15/92)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 9-3, 2.08 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 119 Ks, 103 2/3 IP
Major-league stats: 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 0 Ks, 1 2/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
Bundy proved in his first professional season that he's the game's best pitching prospect, but his late-season promotion was more about getting his feet wet than passing the torch. Still, the Orioles' patchwork rotation is sure to have an opening at some point this year.

6. Oscar Taveras, OF, Cardinals
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 20 (6/19/92)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: .321 BA, 23 HR, 94 RBI, .953 OPS, 42 BBs, 56 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
Taveras is one of those rare sluggers who have a knack for making consistent contact -- you know, like Albert Pujols. His successful transition to Double-A last year firmly implanted him in the best-prospect-in-the-game discussion, so you can bet he'll get the first crack when Carlos Beltran goes down.

7. Billy Hamilton, SS, Reds
Bats: Both | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (9/9/90)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .311 BA, 155 SB, 37 CS, .830 OPS, 86 BBs, 113 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
The Reds were prepared to install Hamilton, who is as much an on-base specialist as a record-setting speedster, as their center fielder and leadoff hitter before acquiring Shin-Soo Choo this offseason. Still, he'll claim the role at some point, whether because of an injury or a regression for Ryan Ludwick or Zack Cozart.

8. Mike Zunino, C, Mariners
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (3/25/91)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .360 BA (161 at-bats), 13 HR, 1.137 OPS, 23 BBs, 33 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
Rarely does a prospect advance to Double-A the same year he's drafted, but Zunino did. His dismantling of minor-league pitching must have played some role in the Mariners' decision to trade John Jaso this offseason. How long can they live with Jesus Montero's deficiencies behind the plate?

9. Gerrit Cole, SP, Pirates
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (9/8/90)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: 9-7, 2.80 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 136 Ks, 132 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
The likelihood of Cole contributing for the Pirates this season hasn't gotten much pub, so perhaps a draft-and-stash in single-season leagues is overly optimistic. But the first overall pick in the 2011 draft has already reached Triple-A. If Pirates are even fringe contenders, he'll be up in the second half.

10. Zack Wheeler, SP, Mets
Bats: Left | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (5/30/90)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: 12-8, 3.26 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 148 Ks, 149 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
After turning Matt Harvey loose on the majors in the second half last year, the Mets figure to do the same with Wheeler this year. And if pedigree has any say in the matter, it figures to yield even better results. Wheeler's ace potential makes him worth a draft-and-stash in NL-only leagues.

11. Miguel Sano, 3B, Twins
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 19 (5/11/93)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: .258 BA, 28 HR, 100 RBI, .893 OPS, 80 BBs, 144 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 3
With each step Sano takes up the minor-league ladder, the Miguel Cabrera comparisons seem all the more valid. He's still a few a steps away, but you never know. Players with his kind of talent sometimes take two or three at a time.

12. Xander Bogaerts, SS, Red Sox
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (10/1/92)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .307 BA, 20 HR, 81 RBI, .896 OPS, 44 BBs, 106 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 4
Jose Iglesias' continued ineptitude with the bat makes Bogaerts an interesting prospect for 2013. Hitting certainly isn't his problem -- he's the Red Sox's best up-and-comer at shortstop since Hanley Ramirez -- and the injury-prone Stephen Drew is clearly just a stopgap at the major-league level.

13. Javier Baez, SS, Cubs
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (12/1/92)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: .294 BA (293 at-bats), 16 HR, 24 SB, .888 OPS, 14 BBs, 69 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 3
When you talk Baez, you talk bat speed. When you talk bat speed, you talk power. When you talk power and you talk shortstop, you usually incorporate "stud" into the conversation. The Cubs have absolutely no reason to rush Baez, but he's a must-have for keeper league owners.

14. Adam Eaton, OF, Diamondbacks
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 24 (12/6/88)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: .375 BA, 7 HR, 130 R, 44 SB, .978 OPS, 59 BBs, 76 Ks
Major-league stats: .259 BA (85 at-bats), 2 HR, 2 SB, .794 OPS, 14 BBs, 15 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 10
Other than Wil Myers and maybe Shelby Miller, Eaton figures to be the first of these prospects to go off the board in single-season leagues. His upside is in question since he did most of his damage in favorable hitting environments, but the Diamondbacks wouldn't have traded Justin Upton if they didn't believe.

15. Jedd Gyorko, 3B, Padres
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 24 (9/23/88)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: .311 BA, 30 HR, 100 RBI, .921 OPS, 51 BBs, 95 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
Gyorko is another tricky prospect to assess because of where he played his minor-league ball, but if he transitions to second base as expected, he doesn't need a .900 OPS to make a significant Fantasy impact. Here's betting he's better than Logan Forsythe, if nothing else.

16. Trevor Bauer, SP, Indians
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (1/17/91)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 12-2, 2.42 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 157 Ks, 130 1/3 IP
Major-league stats: 1-2, 6.06 ERA, 1.65 WHIP, 17 Ks, 16 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 9
Safe to say Bauer's stock is down now that the Diamondbacks have traded the chronic overthinker (and former third overall pick) for 50 cents on the dollar. But a 22-year-old with less than two years of professional experience is the furthest thing from a lost cause. If he wins a rotation spot, he'll matter in mixed leagues.

17. Jose Fernandez, SP, Marlins
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (7/31/92)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: 14-1, 1.75 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 158 Ks, 134 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 3
No prospect opened eyes quite like Fernandez did last year. His young age and limited experience make him a sure bet to return to the minors for more seasoning, but if he delivers more of the same, how will the Marlins resist bringing him up?

18. Jackie Bradley, OF, Red Sox
Bats: Left | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (4/19/90)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .315 BA, 9 HR, 24 SB, 42 2Bs, .911 OPS, 87 BBs, 89 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
How Bradley transitions to the upper levels of the minors will likely determine how long Jacoby Ellsbury remains in Boston. As an on-base specialist with power and speed, he's clearly the Red Sox's next center fielder. The question is if it begins this year.

19. Christian Yelich, OF, Marlins
Bats: Left | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (12/5/91)
2012 Levels: Rookie, Class A
Minor-league stats: .329 BA, 12 HR, 20 SB, .918 OPS, 49 BBs, 85 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 4
Yelich has the makings of a five-category player and has thoroughly dominated the lower levels of the minors. Normally, you'd think he'd still have a year or two to go, but the Marlins have so little talent remaining in the majors that a 2013 debut is hardly out of the question.

20. Taijuan Walker, SP, Mariners
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (8/13/92)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: 7-10, 4.69 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 118 Ks, 126 2/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 3
If the Diamondbacks had been able to send Justin Upton to the Mariners for a package headed by Walker as planned, they would have "won" the deal, according to popular opinion. Because they had to settle for a package headed by Randall Delgado instead, they "lost" it. That pretty much says it all right there.

21. Jameson Taillon, SP, Pirates
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (11/18/91)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: 9-8, 3.55 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 116 Ks, 142 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 3
Remember that guy who went off the board right after Bryce Harper in 2010? He's right here, and after a slow and steady climb up the minor-league ladder, he's knocking on the door at Double-A. Granted, Taillon is still second in line behind Gerrit Cole, but at least he's in line.

22. Bruce Rondon, RP, Tigers
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (12/9/90)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: 29 saves, 1.53 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 66 Ks, 53 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 10
As the projected closer in Detroit, Rondon is all but certain to get drafted in Fantasy. But because he's a closer, he's subject to all the pitfalls that go along with the role and, therefore, not an especially attractive keeper. But hey, he throws 100 miles per hour.

23. Dan Straily, SP, Athletics
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 24 (12/1/88)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 9-7, 2.78 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, 190 Ks, 152 IP
Major-league stats: 2-1, 3.89 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, 32 Ks, 39 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 9
If nothing else, Straily will deliver some strikeouts as the A's fifth starter. His minor-league-leading 190 last year are what put him on the map as a prospect. Whether or not his stuff is good enough to deliver more than a league-average ERA and WHIP, however, remains to be seen.

24. Tyler Skaggs, SP, Diamondbacks
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 21 (7/13/91)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 9-6, 2.87 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 116 Ks, 122 1/3 IP
Major-league stats: 1-3, 5.83 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 21 Ks, 29 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
Maybe if Skaggs' late-season look had gone without a hitch last year, he'd be a lock for the fifth starter job over Randall Delgado and Patrick Corbin. He's the only one of the three with ace potential, but at 21, he'll probably get another go at Triple-A.

25. Julio Teheran, SP, Braves
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (1/27/91)
2012 Levels: Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 7-9, 5.08 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 97 Ks, 131 IP
Major-league stats: 0-0, 5.68 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 5 Ks, 6 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 10
Arguably the game's best right-handed pitching prospect a year ago, Teheran bombed in his second year at Triple-A, but unbeknown to most, he had altered delivery. He switched back in the Dominican Winter League this offseason, and the results were so good that the Braves have already handed him the fifth starter job. An intriguing sleeper for sure.

26. Aaron Hicks, OF, Twins
Bats: Both | Throws: Right
Age: 23 (10/2/89)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: .286 BA, 13 HR, 32 SB, 11 3Bs, .844 OPS, 79 BBs, 116 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
Hicks was a top prospect, and then he wasn't, and now he is again after a breakout year at Double-A that has manager Ron Gardenhire angling to get him in the starting lineup. If he beats out Darin Mastroianni this spring, his outlook isn't so different from Adam Eaton's.

27. Danny Hultzen, SP, Mariners
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 23 (11/28/89)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: 9-7, 3.05 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 136 Ks, 124 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 7
Hultzen looked like a lock to finish his first professional season with the big club when he compiled a 1.19 ERA in 12 starts at Double-A, but he hit a wall at Triple-A. Once he proves his control issues were just a blip on the radar, the Mariners shouldn't have trouble finding a spot for him.

28. Kolten Wong, 2B, Cardinals
Bats: Left | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (10/10/90)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: .287 BA, 9 HR, 21 SB, .754 OPS, 44 BBs, 74 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
The best pure second baseman in the minors plays for a team that's trying to get by with Daniel Descalso in the majors. So basically, they're on a collision course with the inevitable, provided Wong's high contact rate and gap power translate to Triple-A.

29. Nick Castellanos, 3B, Tigers
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (3/4/92)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .320 BA, 10 HR, .815 OPS, 36 BBs, 118 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
The Tigers wanted to bring up Castellanos late last year, but he needed more time in right field. He would have had a shot at that job this spring if the Tigers hadn't signed Torii Hunter. Seeing as his batting average dropped from .405 at Class A to .264 at Double-A, a little seasoning couldn't hurt.

30. Mike Olt, 1B, Rangers
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 24 (8/27/88)
2012 Levels: Double-A, majors
Minor-league stats: .288 BA (354 at-bats), 28 HR, .398 OBP, .977 OPS
Major-league stats: .152 BA (33 at-bats), 0 HR, 5 BBs, 13 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 7
Olt's biggest problem is the same as Jurickson Profar's: He has no place to play. His Josh Willingham-like power and patience would make the natural third baseman an attractive mixed-league option, but because he's no better than a platoon player for now, you can leave him for AL-only leagues.

31. Trevor Rosenthal, RP, Cardinals
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (5/29/90)
2012 Levels: Double-A, Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 8-6, 2.97 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 104 Ks, 109 IP
Major-league stats: 0-2, 2.78 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 25 Ks, 22 2/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
As a reliever, Rosenthal throws 100 miles per hour and gets outs. That much is confirmed. But the Cardinals want a look at him as a starter as well. Shelby Miller has the inside track on the final rotation spot, but Rosenthal is probably next in line, even if he's working in short relief to begin the year.

32. George Springer, OF, Astros
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 23 (9/19/89)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .302 BA, 24 HR, 32 SB, .908 OPS, 62 BBs, 156 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
The Astros selected Springer 11th overall in 2011 thinking he could be another Matt Kemp. In his first full year, he didn't disappoint. If his high strikeout rate doesn't cause him to stall in the upper levels, he's probably coming up this year. Justin Maxwell isn't much of a roadblock.

33. Jorge Soler, OF, Cubs
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (2/25/92)
2012 Levels: Rookie, Class A
Minor-league stats: .299 BA (134 at-bats), 5 HR, 12 SB, .832 OPS, 12 BBs, 19 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 4
Because he played competitively in Cuba, Soler is more advanced than most players his age and looked it in his brief stint at Class A Peoria last year. He's already signed for the next eight years, so it's not like the Cubs have financial incentive to keep him down. But they'll make sure he's ready first.

34. Nolan Arenado, 3B, Rockies
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (4/16/91)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: .285 BA, 12 HR, 36 2Bs, .766 OPS, 39 BBs, 58 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
At this time last year, most would have assumed Arenado would be the Rockies' starting third baseman by now, but when his power numbers dipped in his first year at Double-A, the Rockies decided to slow his ascent. Could he come up this year? Sure, but history suggests you should curb your anticipation.

35. Jonathan Singleton, 1B, Astros
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 21 (9/18/91)
2012 Levels: Double-A
Minor-league stats: .284 BA, 21 HR, .893 OPS, 88 BBs, 131 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
Singelton has already mastered Double-A, so despite his young age, the Astros planned to give him a shot at a roster spot this spring. But then he tested positive for marijuana, incurring a 50-game suspension. It'll delay his arrival for sure, but not a whole year. His high-OPS bat is exactly what the Astros lineup needs.

36. Alen Hanson, SS, Pirates
Bats: Both | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (10/20/92)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: .309 BA, 16 HR, 35 SB, 33 2Bs, 13 3Bs, .909 OPS
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 2
Shortstops aren't supposed to hit like Hanson did last year, and the ones that do certainly aren't supposed to sneak up on anyone. But that's exactly what he did at Class A West Virginia last year, emerging as a legitimate power-speed threat. So was it legit? Owners in long-term keeper leagues can't afford to wait for that answer.

37. Carlos Martinez, SP, Cardinals
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (9/21/91)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: 6-5, 2.93 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 92 Ks, 104 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 4
Yet another in the Cardinals' embarrassment of riches. If they didn't have so many other young pitchers raring to go, someone as talented and as far along as Martinez would be sure to crack the rotation at some point. As things stand now, though, he'll likely get no more than a token start or two down the stretch.

38. Archie Bradley, SP, Diamondbacks
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 20 (8/10/92)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: 12-6, 3.84 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 152 Ks, 136 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 2
The Diamondbacks might not have been able to justify trading Trevor Bauer this offseason if they hadn't taken Bradley four picks after him in 2011. So far, Bradley's strengths (strikeouts) and weaknesses (walks) are the same as Bauer's, but because he came out of high school rather than college, his timetable has more wiggle room.

39. Anthony Rendon, 3B, Nationals
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (6/6/90)
2012 Levels: Rookie, Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .233 BA (133 at-bats), 6 HR, .851 OPS, 23 BBs, 29 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 4
If Rendon could stay on the field for 50 games, he'd probably be a special hitter, but injuries have undermined his potential so far. Because he's blocked by Ryan Zimmerman, he might be a lost cause for this year anyway, but rumors of him eventually moving off third base persist.

40. Kevin Gausman, SP, Orioles
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (1/6/91)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: 0-1, 3.60 ERA, 0.80 WHIP, 13 Ks, 15 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
One year after selecting Dylan Bundy fourth overall, the Orioles selected Gausman fourth overall in 2012. He's not as far along, obviously, but because he's two years older, he's just as likely to make a splash in the second half this year. A budget-conscious AL-only owner will draft accordingly.

41. Matt Barnes, SP, Red Sox
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 22 (6/17/90)
2012 Levels: Class A
Minor-league stats: 7-5, 2.86 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 133 Ks, 119 2/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
Because he debuted against inferior competition at lower Class A last year, Barnes' overall numbers might lead you to believe he's more overpowering than he is. But he's a hard-thrower with good control who, at age 22, could break through this year if a need develops in the Red Sox rotation.

42. Chris Archer, SP, Rays
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 24 (9/26/88)
2012 Levels: Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 7-9, 3.66 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 139 Ks, 128 IP
Major-league stats: 1-3, 4.60 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 36 Ks, 29 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 7
Yeah, he walks a few too many, but Archer showed during his time in the majors last year that he's a bat-misser even against top competition. The Rays don't have room for him to begin the year, but he'll be up with the first Jeff Niemann injury.

43. Byron Buxton, OF, Twins
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 19 (12/18/93)
2012 Levels: Rookie
Minor-league stats: .248 BA (165 at-bats), 5 HR, 11 SB, .448 SLG, .792 OPS
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 1
Consider this a representative pick. Bubba Starling, Carlos Correa, Addison Russell or any in a long list of slow-developing, high-upside prospects could have gone in this spot. Buxton gets the nod because he's the one the scouts are highest on right now, but if you play in a dynasty league and can afford the wait, take your pick.

44. Wily Peralta, SP, Brewers
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 23 (5/8/89)
2012 Levels: Triple-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 7-11, 4.66 ERA, 1.58 WHIP, 143 Ks, 146 2/3 IP
Major-league stats: 2-1, 2.48 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 23 Ks, 29 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 9
If you're still trying to figure out what made Peralta so much more effective in the majors than the minors last year, you're not alone, but because his pedigree better matches his major-league numbers, the Brewers are buying in, all but assuring him the final rotation spot over fellow rookies Mark Rogers and Tyler Thornburg.

45. Oswaldo Arcia, OF, Twins
Bats: Left | Throws: Right
Age: 21 (5/9/91)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A
Minor-league stats: .320 BA, 17 HR, 98 RBI, .928 OPS, 51 BBs, 107 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 5
Arcia is still a bit under the radar as prospects go, but when he continued to produce a .900 OPS even at Double-A last year, it opened some eyes. The Twins plan to have Chris Parmelee start in right field to open 2013. Here's betting he doesn't hold off Arcia all season.

46. Hyun-Jin Ryu, SP, Dodgers
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 26 (3/25/87)
2012 Levels: Did not play -- in Korea
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 10
Ryu will be the first player to go straight from the Korean Baseball Organization to the majors. His contract all but assures it. Because no one has done it before, though, no one knows what to expect. Overseas signings tend to be hit-or-miss anyway. If Ryu produces Wei-Yin Chen-like numbers, it's a victory.

47. Tony Cingrani, RP, Reds
Bats: Left | Throws: Left
Age: 23 (7/5/89)
2012 Levels: Class A, Double-A, majors
Minor-league stats: 10-4, 1.73 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 172 Ks, 146 IP
Major-league stats: 0-0, 1.80 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 9 Ks, 5 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 6
Though he was drafted as a reliever and debuted as a reliever, Cingrani's numbers as a starter last year say he deserves a chance in the role. He had a 1.11 ERA in the California League, for crying out loud. Maybe if Aroldis Chapman doesn't pan out in the rotation, Cingrani will get that chance.

48. Kyle Gibson, SP, Twins
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 25 (10/23/87)
2012 Levels: Rookie, Class A, Triple-A
Minor-league stats: 0-2, 4.13 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 33 Ks, 28 1/3 IP
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
Gibson's return from Tommy John surgery late last year didn't get much attention in Fantasy. But for him, picking up where he left off means competing for a rotation spot this spring. And unlike most Twins pitching prospects, he actually has some strikeout potential.

49. Hiroyuki Nakajima, SS, Athletics
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 30 (7/31/82)
2012 Levels: Did not play -- in Japan
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 10
The Athletics like Nakajima enough that they plan to start him at shortstop over Jed Lowrie, who they paid a steep price to get. But as a 30-year-old middle infielder coming over from Japan, his offensive viability is rightfully in question. If a 10-10 campaign is your cup of tea, have at him.

50. Darin Ruf, OF, Phillies
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
Age: 26 (7/28/86)
2012 Levels: Double-A, majors
Minor-league stats: .317 BA, 38 HR, 104 RBI, 1.028 OPS
Major-league stats: .333 BA (33 at-bats), 3 HR, 1.079 OPS, 2 BBs, 12 Ks
Scott's 2013 Fantasy impact: 8
The signing of Delmon Young seemingly put Ruf out of the mix to start in left field, but manager Charlie Manuel's effusive praise of the late-blooming slugger makes him an attractive sleeper in NL-only leagues still. He always hit for average in the minors, so if his newfound power is legit, he might be as well.

Honorable mentions: Michael Choice, OF, OAK; Yasiel Puig, OF, LAD; Gary Sanchez, C, NYY; Carlos Correa, SS, HOU; Addison Russell, SS, OAK; James Paxton, SP, SEA; Bubba Starling, OF, KC; Gregory Polanco, OF, PIT; Francisco Lindor, SS, CLE; Delino DeShields, 2B, HOU; Brad Miller, SS, SEA; Martin Perez, SP, TEX; Casey Kelly, SP, SD; Matt Davidson, 3B, ARI; Hak-Ju Lee, SS, TB; Wilmer Flores, 3B, NYM; Nick Franklin, SS, SEA; Chris McGuiness, 1B, CLE; Tyler Thornburg, RP, MIL; Avisail Garcia, OF, DET; Brett Jackson, OF, CHC; Mark Rogers, SP, MIL; Evan Gattis, OF, ATL; Matt Adams, 1B, STL.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott White at @CBSScottWhite . You can also e-mail us at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

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Player News
Report: Orioles in 'continuous dialogue' with pitcher Chris Tillman
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) The Orioles and pitcher Chris Tillman are reportedly engaged in "continuous dialogue" for a long-term extension and have been for the past several weeks, according to the Baltimore Sun.

Tillman signed a one-year, $4.315 million deal in January to avoid arbitration and the discussions for a new deal are still considered preliminary, according to the report.

Tillman posted a 13-6 record in 2014 with a 3.34 ERA in 34 starts.


Tigers bullpen decision coming down to Ian Krol, Kyle Ryan
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Tigers manager Brad Ausmus is running out of time to finish off his bullpen for Opening Day. The final bullpen role will likely be a left-handed pitcher and is expected to come down to Kyle Ryan and Ian Krol, according to MLB.com.

"If I'm there, hopefully it's a good situation, whether it's long or short," Ryan said. "For them to have enough confidence in me to go into Spring Training as a reliever, and actually for them to believe that I might be able to make the team as a reliever, that makes me proud."

Ryan has given up seven runs on seven hits in 11 innings of work this spring. 

"When he throws it right, it's good," Ausmus said of Krol. "He has a tendency to occasionally slow his arm down on his cutter and curveball. He did it a couple times today. But when he doesn't slow his arm down, it's very good."


Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson continues to make his case
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson still doesn't know what his role will be when Opening Day rolls around, but he's showing he belongs on the roster, reports MLB.com.

"There's always stuff I need to work on, and I need to continue to impress," Pederson said after launching his fifth home run of the spring Saturday, boosting his batting average to .373.

Manager Don Mattingly remains quiet on what he will do when the decision has to be made, but Pederson is doing what he can to impress.

"[Opening Day] is out of my control," Pederson said. "It's something you dream about as a kid, playing in the big leagues, and you do anything you can to make that dream come true."


Angels P Matt Shoemaker gives up three runs in loss to Dodgers
by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) After pitching six scoreless innings in his last start, Angels pitcher Matt Shoemaker struggled a bit in the team's 5-4 to the Dodgers, reports MLB.com.

Shoemaker gave up three runs on four hits in six innings, striking out two. One of the hits he surrended was to Joc Pederson on a two-run homer.

The 28-year-old completed last season with a 3.04 ERA, 124 strikeouts and only 24 walks.


Reds third baseman Todd Frazier feels ready for Opening Day
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Reds third baseman Todd Frazier feels his swing has come back and is ready to tackle the long haul ahead of the regular season, reports MLB.com.

"It comes quick, like usual," Frazier said on Saturday morning. "I get goose bumps thinking about it right now -- another year, it's crazy."

Frazier struggled early in spring training, but has rebounded to go 8 for 23 in his last seven games.

"I hit in the Minor Leagues for about 10 at-bats [on Friday], just to try and feel it back-to-back. I do, and I feel really well," said Frazier, who is batting .262 in 14 games this spring. "I feel like if I had to play tomorrow [in the regular season], I'd be ready to go. It's all about preparation, and offseason stuff. I feel like it's so far, so good."


Angels OF Mike Trout homers in loss to Dodgers
by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Angels outfielder Mike Trout homered in Saturday's 5-4 loss to the Dodgers, reports MLB.com.

Trout, 23, robbed the Dodgers' Alex Guerrero of an extra-base hit in the first inning, making it a successful day for him, despite the loss. 

This spring he has a batting average of .477 with four home runs and 14 RBI. 


White Sox hope to have Robertson, Petricka back by Opening Day
by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Two key members of the White Sox bullpen are working their way back from forearm injuries, but manager Robin Ventura is confident he'll have both back by opening day. 

Closer David Robertson is scheduled to pitch on Sunday. 

"We're trying to make sure we’re extra careful with him," Ventura said, per Comcast's Dan Hayes. "He doesn’t seem to be concerned about it as much as we do."

Setup man Jake Petricka isn't as far along as Robertson. He played catch on Saturday for the first time in five days.

The Sox are taking it slow, so that the team will have both pitchers for Opening Day as well as the rest of the season. 

"You’re just making sure you’re cautious enough that you feel good about when (they go) out there that there won’t be any setbacks,” Ventura said. 


Indians pitcher Zach McAllister fans nine in outing Saturday
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Indians pitcher Zach McAllister went five innings Saturday against the Brewers, allowing two runs on six hits with nine strikeouts. McAllister, who is expected to make one more start before Opening Day, touched 97 mph with his fastball in the appearance, according to Cleveland.com.

"He's been impressive and he's been doing it all spring," said Francona. "He's not just throwing strikes, he's down in the zone when he wants to and then he can elevate with some velocity. I think his hard work is really paying off."

McAllister has felt he always had the added velocity.

"Throughout my career I've always felt I've had a little more (velocity) in there if I could maintain it," said McAllister. "For whatever reason, whether it's being more consistent with my delivery or my arm action, I'm just trusting that when I let it go it's going to go where I want it to go. I'm not trying to place anything."


Pirates Pedro Alvarez looking to stick at first base
by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Pirates first baseman Pedro Alvarez is hoping to stick at his new position after converting from third base, reports triblive.com.

On opening day, Alvarez will be the team's 54th first baseman in its 129-year history.

“It's a matter of getting used to seeing the field from that point of view,” Alvarez said. “I need to get the reps in so the responsibilities that come with playing that position become second nature to me.”

Pirates general manager Neal Huntington talked about the team's past efforts of platooning the position.

“You can't develop something you don't have. You can't buy something you can't afford,” general manager Neal Huntington said. “That's why we've tried to platoon. Over the last couple of years, we've realized that's a challenge for a National League manager. Platoons are much harder here than they are in the American League, especially with a one-dimensional player who can only play one position.”

The hope around the organization is that they can get quality production from Alvarez.

“Our hope that is between Pedro Alvarez and Corey Hart, we'll get quality major league production,” Huntington said.

The 28-year-old is batting .306 with two home runs, nine RBI and eight strikeouts this spring.


Pirates pitcher Charlie Morton can't find a rhythm Saturday
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Pirates pitcher Charlie Morton tossed six innings Saturday against the Blue Jays, allowing six hits, including two home runs and no strikeouts. Morton, who is fighting for a spot in the starting rotation, is still recovering from labrum surgery six months ago.

"Physically, Charlie is in a good place," manager Clint Hurdle said to MLB.com. "He is trying to make some mechanical adjustments in his delivery, but we don't have any health concerns about him."

Morton isn't worried about fixing mechanical issues just yet.

"Now is a tough time to put a lot of emphasis on mechanics," said Morton. "I gotta go pitch, adjustments or no adjustments."


 
 
 
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