Fantasy Baseball Player Prospecting: Top players for 2013 and beyond

by Chris Hadorn on May 16, 2012 @ 11:55:46 PDT


Your fantasy baseball rankings look a little stale.'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, whether it's in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball game next week or in your fantasy baseball keeper league two years from now.

For both single-season and dynasty format players, here is the list of minor league baseball's most valuable fantasy commodities for 2013 and beyond. Yesterday's Player Prospecting featured the best 2012 contributors.

Upside (U) 1 (fantasy contributor) to 5 (star potential)
MLB arrival (M) 1 (years away) to 5 (could happen any day)



1. Jurickson Profar, SS, Texas Rangers (U:5 | M:3)

148 AB at Double-A Frisco: .291 AVG, 4 HR, 19 RBI, 24 R, 6 SB, .841 OPS

Nineteen-year-old Profar is a polished player who has a chance to be a five-category shortstop.

2. Miguel Sano, 3B, Minnesota Twins (U:5 | M:1)

136 AB at low Single-A Beloit: .287 AVG, 11 HR, 35 RBI, 27 R, 1.031 OPS

Sano's power is off the charts, but a high strikeout rate could haunt him against tougher competition.

3. Billy Hamilton, SS, Cincinnati Reds (U:4 | M:2)

142 AB at high Single-A Bakersfield: .345 AVG, 1 HR, 13 RBI, 33 R, 35 SB, .934 OPS

With more steals than games played (33), Hamilton could be a prolific base stealer in the majors.

4. Christian Yelich, OF, Miami Marlins (U:4 | M:2)

102 AB at high Single-A Jupiter: .275 AVG, 5 HR, 9 RBI, 22 R, 9 SB, .887 OPS

Blessed with a sweet stroke, Yelich has the ability to be an all-around fantasy contributor.

T5. Nick Castellanos, 3B, Detroit Tigers (U:4 | M:2)

143 AB at high Single-A Lakeland: .406, 2 HR, 25 RBI, 24 R, 3 SB, 1.005 OPS

Castellanos has the tool that matters the most: the ability to hit.

T5. Manny Machado, SS, Baltimore Orioles (U:4 | M:2)

125 AB at Double-A Bowie: .256 AVG, 2 HR, 13 RBI, 11 R, 3 SB, .769 OPS

Power-hitting shortstop has been challenged since early success at low-A ball.

Others to watch


1. Dylan Bundy, RHP, Baltimore Orioles (U:5 | M:1)

25 innings at low Single-A Delmarva: 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 36 K, 2 BB, 0 HR, 1.44 GO/AO

The O's are being extra delicate with Bundy and for good reason. Bundy is probably the best pitcher drafted out of high school in the last decade.

2. Taijuan Walker, RHP, Seattle Mariners (U:4 | M:2)

34 1/3 innings at Double-A Jackson: 3-1, 1.83 ERA, 35 K, 11 BB, 1 HR, 1.07 GO/AO

M's pushed Walker hard this spring by jumping a level, and the 19-year-old has responded admirably with better numbers than Hultzen.

3. Jameson Taillon, RHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (U:5 | M:2)

36 2/3 innings at high Single-A Bradenton: 2-2, 1.47 ERA, 36 K, 7 BB, 0 HR, 1.00 GO/AO

Potential ace has smoothed some of his rough edges in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League.

4. Matt Barnes, RHP, Boston Red Sox (U:5 | M:2)

38 2/3 combined innings at low Single-A Greenville and high Single-A Salem:

3-0, 0.70 ERA, 62 K, 5 BB, 1 HR, 2.38 GO/AO

Taken with the 18th overall pick of the 2011 draft, Barnes is looking like the steal of the draft so far. He features a mid- to high-90s fastball, a nasty curveball and a quickly developing changeup.

T5. Gerrit Cole, RHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (U:5 | M:2)

34 innings at high Single-A Bradenton: 2-1, 3.18 ERA, 39 K, 11 BB, 4 HR, 1.65 GO/AO

Cole has Grade A stuff but is still working on getting Grade A results to match his repertoire.

T5. Zack Wheeler, RHP, New York Mets (U:4 | M:2)

30 2/3 innings at Double-A Binghamton: 2-2, 2.05 ERA, 37 K, 15 BB, 0 HR, 1.23 GO/AO

Wheeler's strikeout rate and home run stinginess demonstrate how filthy his stuff is. Long term, Wheeler is a much more promising pitching prospect than fellow Met Matt Harvey.

Others to watch

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About Chris Hadorn

Chris Hadorn has covered minor league and amateur prospects for more than a decade. He writes for San Diego's North County Times and has been a KFFL fantasy baseball contributor since 2006.

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