Youth is being served this baseball season. We’ve seen many organizations forgo their plans of waiting out prospects and getting them up to the bigs earlier then first speculated. Names Such as Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakis, Danny Duffy, Anthony Rizzo, Charlie Blackmon, Domonic Brown, Dee Gordon, Jerry Sands, etc. have gotten their tickets to the show. While a lot of big names have already surfaced, I would like to look at the next in line to be called up for each team. While defense is an important metric in determining a prospects worth, I am strictly using the standard 5x5 fantasy format(Batting Average, Homeruns, RBI, Runs, Stolen Bases x ERA, WHIP, Wins, Saves, K) when evaluating. These are my opinions on who SHOULD get the call and not on who will get the call. Now onto the good stuff:
While it’s rare for prospects to be plucked out of AA, it does happen. I think the situation is setting up perfectly for Flaherty to jump from AA to MLB. He was the 43rd pick in 08’, he is turning 25 this season so the clock is ticking, Aramis Ramirez has been abysmal, and the Cubs are not going anywhere this season.
After being selected 7th overall in 08’ out of the U, Alonso began his quest to become the Reds 1B. The problem he ran into was Joey Votto. Votto took a little longer to develop but is now a perennial MVP candidate at 1B. The Reds needed to adjust on the fly and get Alonso playing another position, LF. Once is defense catches up with his bat he will be an immense addition the reigning NL central champions. If the Reds continue to fall behind the Cardinals, Alonso may be called up sooner then expected.
Houston Astros: David Carpenter (Age 25) RP .000 ERA 1.07WHIP 14K 5SV in 14inn
Carpenter played his college ball in West Virginia for the Mountaineers. He has progressed through the minors at a fairly normal pace, never really distinguishing himself. But this season he has been unhittable. The Astros bullpen has been an issue all season. Melencon has proved to be a good option in the 9th, but Carpenter would be the perfect set up man to bridge the gap. The Astros are in rebuilding mode and should see what they have in the 25 year old.
Milwaukee Brewers: Matt Gamel (Age 26) 3B .319Avg 13HR 46RBI 47R 2SB in 248AB
Gamel has been a top prospect for a long time since being selected out of high school in 05’. He’s spent time in the majors in 08’, 09’ and last season. Whether it was due to lack of productivity, injury or other factors he has yet to stick. Well at 26 he is getting old for a prospect. Current 3B Casey McGehee has not lived up to the numbers he provided last year. Gamel has the talent it’s just a matter of getting used to major league level pitching. If McGehee continues to scuttle I wouldn’t be surprised to see the brewers try out Gamel once again.
The Pirates are playing some excellent baseball this season. That is in direct correlation to their change of front office people a few years back. This new regime has concentrated on restocking their system. With Jose Tabata in LF and Andrew McCutchen in CF the Bucs already have 2/3 of their OF for the distant future. Xavier Paul, Garret Jones and Matt Diaz have been sharing the RF duties this season. None of them are having a above average year. If Presley can deliver like he is doing this year at AAA he could sure up their OF. No team loves to platoon players all season, so if none of the current RF step up Presley should be given a shot.
St. Louis Cardinals: Chuckie Fick (Age 25) SP 1-1 2.57ERA 1.17WHIP 32K 1SV in 35inn
The Cardinals starting pitching has been a bit shakier than in recent years. It started when Adam Wainwright was lost for the season. Then Chris Carpenter got hurt in the spring and hasn’t been himself all year. Injuries hit recently and Lance Lynn was given the call. He didn’t answer the bell and was sent back down when Kyle McClellan was activated of the DL. Now with McClellan back Jake Westbrook looks like the weak link. If he continues to post a 5+era and 1.6WHIP they should cut bait and call up Chuckie. Fick has had a solid season at AAA and should impress under the tutelage of Dave Duncan.
If you liked this write up I also wrote them for the other divisions at Hits 4 Brains