Adam McCalvy, of MLB.com, reports the Milwaukee Brewers
have called up third baseman Ryan Braun from
Triple-A Nashville. Braun was hitting .342 with 10 home runs, 22 RBI and four
steals in 33 games with Nashville. He will likely be in the starting lineup
Friday, May 25.
One of the better position prospects in the game, it was just a matter of time before Braun received a call to play in Milwaukee. With a platoon at third of infielders Tony Graffanino, who's hitting .187, and Craig Counsell, who's hitting .231, there really was no reason to leave Braun in Triple-A for much longer. Braun, drafted fifth overall in 2005, hit 22 home runs last year between Class A advanced and Double-A. He also stole 26 bases between both leagues while racking up 77 RBI. In 2005, Braun hit 18 home runs in his final year with the University of Miami and another 10 dingers between the Rookie League and Class A.
With Braun expected to start Friday, it looks like the job is his to lose at the moment. The 23-year-old comes with a lot of hype, between being ranked No. 26 on Baseball America's Top 100 Prospects for 2007 and his multiple awards from college. He has shown a good eye and solid knowledge of the strike zone in the minors. He struck out 100 times last year with 44 walks, but he was posting a 15/11 walk-to-strikeout ratio so far this year.
Braun will be a popular pickup in fantasy leagues, but he'll have the most value in keeper leagues. At 23, he has a lot of upside and could be one of the better third baseman in the game heading into 2008. For teams in need of a third baseman or a boost in power, Braun is your guy. Graffanino is safe to drop, if he's even owned, as he wasn't doing much to help a team anyway. Counsell could be worth holding on to in NL-only leagues, just in case Braun isn't ready to make the jump to the majors.
About Michael Egnak
Michael Egnak is a Hot Off The Wire Analyst at KFFL and has been with the company since 2005. Covering both NFL and MLB, Egnak is also a key contributor to KFFL's fantasy services.
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