“Tranquilo” – Five Players to Monitor in the Eastern League
Having grown up in a small town in the suburbs of Portland, ME, the Eastern League holds a special place in my heart. My experience started as a true Sea Dogs fan with a gem of a start on my birthday by Josh Beckett. Then was the ’06 championship run led by Jacoby Ellsbury and Brandon Moss. The list goes on and on and the energetic relationship between the Red Sox and Sea Dogs intensifies the home town pride.
Hadlock Field has also been the gateway drug to my spiral as a prospect junkie. As I discovered my love for the game beyond myself as a player, Hadlock Field granted me a live look at Minor League Baseball’s top tier talent. It was always a treat to see the next great Red Sox prospect suit up and even better if we happened to see a top prospect from out of town.
If this article had been written earlier in the season, Rafael Devers would have stolen the show as the headliner. Instead, the star of the league is an Akron Rubberduck. Their team is stacked and I could have written four of the five sorts on this list about relevant Indians’ prospects. Instead, only one is included. This list offers a range of different prospect profiles and, while it is doubtful this season each of these pups is worth monitoring in dynasty leagues as their at the point in the exhausting MiLB journey where they’re a call away from The Show.
Mejia is one of the widely accepted catching prospects in the fantasy community due to this pure hitting ability. He offers more pop from the right side than the left but squares balls up from both sides of the dish. Pure luck doesn’t produce a 50-game hit streak at any level. Keep an eye on him at the trade deadline because he could become an important piece in a deal and he is on track to make his MLB debut next season no matter what uniform he is wearing.
Newman can flat out hit and is the heir apparent to Jordy Mercer as the Pittsburgh shortstop. He was the first player ever to win back-to-back batting titles in the Cape Cod League and has carried that success into his professional career. The power potential average and a peak of 12 home runs is probably the ceiling, but he is a tailor-made No. 2 hitter with a keen batters eye and consistent contact that he will steal a bag once he’s on base. Mercer is signed through 2018 but Newman is likely to make his debut around this time next season.
Bradley is a defensively challenged and limited to first base but he possesses the bat suited to handle all of the offensive pressure. He can hit the ball over the fence to all fields with plus bat speed that has posted some gaudy power numbers in his young professional career, and from a fantasy perspective, he’ll hold his own in the ratio categories. Bradley is young and likely still two seasons away but profiles as a middle of the order run producer for the Indians.
Ureña is a raw international prospect reaching the critical years in his career but has the player profile that fantasy owners need to crave. Defensively, his ceiling is league average but on offense is where he can thrive. He is a switch hitter with a feel for hitting from both sides of the dish and more pop from the right side than left. He’s shown a feel for hitting with a capacity to blossom into an above average offensive threat if adds polish at the plate. Ureña profiles an above average fantasy asset no matter where he settles in on the defensive side of the baseball.
Pure power is the calling card for the 34th selection in the 2015 MLB Draft. It’s above average game power that translates to driving homers out of the ballpark to all fields. Stewart is an advanced hitter that is not afraid to get deep into counts and this results in his fair share of both walks and strikeouts. The biggest concern is his lack of defensive aptitude that likely limits him to left field and puts pressure on his bat. He’ll need to continue to hit he’ll find his way into the lineup but playing in the American League will help his cause in the long term.
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Major League Fantasy Baseball Radio Show: Join Corey D Roberts, and Kyle Amore live on Sunday July 16th, 2017 from 7-9pm EST for episode #94 of Major League Fantasy Baseball Radio. We are a live broadcast that will take callers at 323-870-4395. Press 1 to speak with the host. We will the latest information in the world of fantasy baseball.
Our guest this week is Joe Iannone. Joe is a writer with majorleaguefantasysports.com and he focuses on spot starting low owned pitchers. His articles publish every Sunday morning.
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