Another week, and more good things from the top prospects in baseball. Maybe there’s no Kris Bryant or Mike Trout in this group, but there are an awful lot of fantasy prospects to like. You could argue the quantity of quality has never been better.
Here’s a look at the updated top 10 prospects for the 2017 season.
1. Yoan Moncada, IF, Chicago White Sox
2017 stats: 10 G, .317/.404/.488, 7 R, 1 2B, 0 3B, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 6 BB, 14 K, 2 SB at Triple-A Charlotte
It wasn’t as good of a week for Moncada, but those numbers are still just fine, and the strikeouts are dropping, which is a good thing. He isn’t running as much, but that’s more than likely an order from the White Sox, as they don’t want their prized prospect to get hurt on a steal attempt. Everything still is on schedule for Moncada to be hitting at or near the top of the White Sox order before June.
2. Ozzie Albies, 2B, Atlanta Braves
2017 stats: 11 G, .300/.315/.480, 9 R, 5 2B, 2 3B, 0 HR, 2 BB,11 K, 5 SB at Triple-A Gwinnett
Albies can really, really hit, and he’s showing it in Triple-A. He’s also showing the plus-plus speed, and has yet to be caught as a base-stealer. The one negative right now is that he isn’t drawing a ton of walks, and by not drawing a ton of walks we mean he’s one pace for single digits. That’s not gonna work, but Albies is that rare hitter who might be able to hit for a high average even without ideal patience. He’s that talented.
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3. Lucas Giolito, RHP, Chicago White Sox
2017 stats:2 GS, 7.56 ERA, 8.1 IP, 9 H, 5 BB, 8 K at Triple-A Charlotte
Giolito followed a less-than-stellar start with another outing that doesn’t live up to his lofty standards; walking four and giving up three runs in four innings of work for the Knights. Reports are the stuff has looked okay -- outside of some velocity fluctuation, which is common early -- but the command just hasn’t been up to par. He stays in the top three on the list for another week, but we’ll have to see some improvement in the next outing to stay here. He has been warned.
4. Lewis Brinson, OF, Milwaukee Brewers
2017 stats: 4 G, .273/.304/.400, 4 R, 2 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 6 K, 1 SB at Triple-A Colorado Springs
Brinson missed a handful of games after jamming his finger on a stolen-base attempt in the opener, and the results in his time back weren’t fantastic. Having said that, it’s just nice to see the talented outfielder back on the field. Assuming he’s fully recovered from the injury, he should be back to putting up ridiculous numbers in the friendly confines of Colorado Springs, and once he gets a chance to play at the highest level, he’ll be a must-own in fantasy leagues.
5. Cody Bellinger, 1B, Los Angeles Dodgers
2017 stats: .10 G, 7 R, .395/.465/.737, 4 2B, 0 3B, 3 HR, 5 BB,12 K, 4 SB At Triple-A Oklahoma City
One of the underrated aspects of Bellinger’s game is his speed. He’s not an elite runner, but compared to other first baseman he’s Billy Hamilton, and his good jumps help that speed play up. Oh, he also can hit for average and power and is currently killing baseballs in the Pacific Coast League. As soon as the Dodgers figure out how to play Bellinger -- along with the service-time issues -- he will be up. He’s an outstanding talent.
6. Austin Meadows, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates
2017 stats: 10 G, 162/.220/.270, 4 R, 1 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 2 BB, 8 K, 1 SB at Triple-A Indianapolis
Meadows numbers may not look pretty, but keep in mind that he started the year on a dreadful 1-for-22 streak. That’s always going to make the stats look bad, because, well, those are bad stats. Also keep in mind that the sample size of these numbers is miniscule, and that Meadows is one of the most talented outfielders in all of baseball. It’s going to take some time, but fortunately for Meadows, there’s lots. If/when he gets a chance to play he can help in every category.
7. Jeff Hoffman, RHP, Colorado Rockies
2017 stats: 3 GS, 4.80 ERA, 15 IP, 15 H, 5 BB, 12 K at Triple-A Albuquerque
After a pedestrian first start to the year, Hoffman has been much better, and that ERA is a case of -- wait for it -- the sample size. He isn’t getting deep in games, but he’s throwing strikes and missing bats at an acceptable rate. If Hoffman was pitching in any other system he’d be considerably higher, but even in Coors Field, he should get enough strikeouts and keep the ball in the park enough to be a fantasy option.
8. J.P. Crawford, SS, Philadelphia Phillies
2017 stats: 10 G,.086/.200/.143, 1 R, 0 2B, 1 3B, 0 HR, 5 BB, 12 K, 0 SB
The only positive from Crawford’s wretched start is that he’s showing a quality approach at the plate in seen in the walks. A lot of young hitters would press, but he keeps on waiting for his pitch. Unfortunately, he’s not hitting that pitch when he’s getting it. There’s lots of time for Crawford to turn things around, but this you can’t get off to much worse of a start than this. He needs to start hitting. Soon.
9. Francis Martes, RHP Houston Astros
2017 stats: 2 GS, 0.00 ERA, 9.1 IP, 7 H, 9 BB, 10 K at Triple-A Fresno
Martes made his first two starts of the year this week, and it was a mixed bag. The good is obvious, he didn’t give up a run, and he’s striking out over a hitter an inning. The bad is also fairly obvious; you can’t expect to give up 16 baserunners in just over nine innings and expect to give up zero damage. It’s important to note that Martes struggled to throw strikes in his first few starts of 2016, so there’s no reason to panic. If Houston is to bring him to the highest level, however, they’re likely going to want to see more (quality) strikes.
10. Gleyber Torres, SS, New York Yankees
2017 stats: 10 G,.257/.366/.371, 5 R, 0 HR, 2 2B, 1 3B, 2 RBI, 5 BB, 4 K, 1 SB at Double-A Trenton
Gleyber Torres is...human? Are we sure? This was the worst week we’ve seen the top shortstop prospect have since his dominating turn in the Arizona Fall League, which just goes to show you: Baseball is really, really hard. This is still arguably the most talented prospect in baseball, and even if the odds of him playing in New York are lower than any prospect on this list, he still deserves a spot because of how talented he is.
Also considered: Bradley Zimmer, OF, Cleveland; Brent Honeywell, RHP, Tampa Bay Rays; Reynaldo Lopez, RHP, Chicago White Sox; Josh Hader, LHP, Milwaukee Brewers