KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Player Prospecting series highlights the exploits of minor league baseball players, including top MLB prospects. Find out who'll make an impact in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball game next week or in your fantasy baseball keeper league a year from now.
Ah, Major League Baseball's non-waiver trade deadline has passed, which means the rumor mill was churning away. One rumor that looked like a real possibility is the Philadelphia Phillies shipping Michael Young somewhere. It's still feasible with a non-waivers deal.
Bogaerts: Boston's 2013 solution?
That possibility grew legs yesterday when the Phils brought up third base prospect Cody Asche from Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Asche is one of the team's top prospects and is the face of the future in the City of Brotherly Love at the hot corner. Young will be a free agent this winter and the Phillies don't plan on re-signing him. The writing is on the wall. The only thing really holding this up is Young's no-trade clause. Stay tuned.
Asche, 23, was a fourth-round pick in 2011 and has displayed nice pop in the last two minor league seasons. This year, he was hitting .295 with 15 long balls and 68 RBIs in 404 at-bats with Lehigh Valley. The lefty swinger also swiped 11 bags. He was ranked as the club's No. 7 prospect by Baseball America heading into the season. He's only getting better.
His power is easily his best asset, but he also has the ability to hit for average if he can cut down on his overly aggressive attitude at the plate and his swings and misses; Asche fanned 95 times and walked only 35 times at Class AAA. His glove could use some work, but it won't hold him back in the bigs.
Asche's PT is dependent on whether Young is dealt, obviously. Regardless, he should be scooped up in NL-only leagues. If Young sticks around, Asche will still see occasional starts as the team auditions him for next year. He'll probably require a decent FAAB bid in NL leagues if Young is gone.
You've probably heard this name before: Xander Bogaerts. It's necessary to touch on him again after the Boston Red Sox dealt third base incumbent Jose Iglesias to the Detroit Tigers last night in the three-team trade that netted them Jake Peavy.
The BoSox have plenty of options to replace Iglesias at the hot corner. They could use some sort of platoon between Brandon Snyder and Brock Holt, they could recall Will Middlebrooks, they could trade for Michael Young or they could turn to Bogaerts.
Snyder and Holt are just stopgap solutions for the short term, most likely, and Boston doesn't appear ready to revisit Middlebrooks, who is hitting .257/.323/.451 at Triple-A Pawtucket. Although Bogaerts is a natural shortstop and will likely take over at the 6 once Stephen Drew's contract is up, the Red Sox have been trying him out at third base at Pawtucket recently.
The hot corner situation in Boston will remain fluid, but Bogaerts, who possesses scary pop and will hit for average at the next level, might be their best option as the team looks to finish strong down the stretch. He also provides middle infield depth, something Middlebrooks can't claim. He's a blue-chipper in dynasty leagues and should already be owned in AL-only leagues. Put him on your radar in deep mixed leagues if you're looking for a spark.
More: on Green, Rienzo, Wojciechowski, Kieschnick
About Keith Hernandez
Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.
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