A reminder that this is strictly a list for 2019. Several of these prospects are among the best in baseball, but for the purpose of this series, it’s just measuring potential impact for this season. Also, a reminder that prospects who are on MLB rosters are not eligible for this list, nor is any player that has exhausted his prospect eligibility. You can view my top 100 prospects for 2019 and my top prospects by position in our Rotoworld MLB Season Pass.
Without further ado, here’s the top 10 fantasy prospects that can help you in the 2019 season.
1. Bo Bichette, SS, Toronto Blue Jays
2019 stats: 54 G, .310/.373/.510, 7 HR, 15 SB, 21 BB, 42 SO at High-A Dunedin and Triple-A Buffalo.
Welcome to the top spot, Bo. Bichette is actually going through a bit of a slump over his last four games with a 3-for-18 run, but obviously, that shouldn't be too concerning. With Luis Urias (finally) off to the majors, and the Brendan McKay situation -- more on that in a second -- Bichette is well-deserving of the top spot. There are rumors he'll be up before the end of the month, and his ability to hit for average, steal bases and provide some pop from the right side make him a must-add when he does get the call. It may be too late, so if you can stash him, by all means.
2. Brendan McKay, LHP/DH, Tampa Bay Rays
2019 stats: 13 G, 1.22 ERA, 66.2 IP, 38 H, 15 BB, 88 SO at Triple-A Durham; 4 G, 3.72 ERA, 19.1 IP, 19 H, 1 BB, 18 SO at Tampa Bay.
One of the reasons why Bichette is in the top spot is because of his ability. In fact, it's the main reason. But let's talk about McKay, who was in the top spot the last two weeks after pitching and being sent down twice for the Rays. Yes, the 23-year-old struggled in his last start by allowing nine hits and six runs in 3 1/3 innings, but this is more about how the Rays are going to use him the rest of the year. If he's going to be up-and-down every 10 games, it's tough to say how much fantasy value he can provide. He'll still be a quality streamer, but I'll take the (likely) everyday shortstop ahead of that. For now.
3. Gavin Lux, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers
2019 stats: 82 G, .352/.415/.621, 20 HR, 7 SB, 39 BB, 75 SO at Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Goodness gracious. Lux continues to destroy Triple-A pitching, and before a 1-for-8 'slump' against San Antonio, he was hitting .531 in his 64 at-bats with Oklahoma City. A 2-for-4 day on Sunday now has his line with the Triple-A Dodgers at .487/.522/.961. These are the friendliest of friendly confines and the PCL pitching talent is not good. I care not. Lux is an elite offensive option in the middle infield, and if the Dodgers give him a chance, you should, too. He only ranks this low because of the lack of guarantees.
4. Luis Robert, OF, Chicago White Sox
2019 stats: 85 G, .346/.397/.637, 21 HR, 32 SB, 18 BB, 83 SO at High-A Winston-Salem and Double-A Birmingham, and Triple-A Charlotte.
Robert's week ended on a down note, as he went 1-for-13 with five strikeouts in his three-game series over the weekend against Pawtucket. Prior to that, he had three-straight multi-hit games, and he homered three times with three steals over the week. Long story short, Robert continues to destroy every level of pitching he faces. The White Sox can't make the "work on his defense" excuse here, and he should get the chance to finish the year with Chicago. Should and will are often not the same things.
5. Isan Diaz, 2B, Miami Marlins
2019 stats: 92 G, .305/.394/.586, 24 HR, 5 SB, 44 BB, 84 SO at Triple-A New Orleans.
Welcome to the list, Mr. Diaz. The 23-year-old has been outstanding with the Baby Cakes in 2019 as you can see from those numbers, and he's been even better as of late; hitting .386 over his last 10 games with four homers in the PCL. Starlin Castro is the subject of trade rumors, and as soon as Castro is dealt -- or as soon as the Marlins come to their senses and realize that Diaz needs to play right now -- you should undoubtedly pick up Diaz. The ability to hit for power from this position is an awful nice commodity.
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6. Kyle Tucker, OF, Houston Astros
2019 stats: 91 G, .271/.355/.574, 25 HR, 21 SB, 37 BB, 87 SO at Triple-A Round Rock.
After the slow start to July, Tucker is starting to see his hits fall as of late, and he had a pair of two-hit games while adding that 25th homer at the end of the week. There have been some trades talks involving Tucker, and there's no denying that a move would improve his prospects for this year -- assuming he goes to a team that isn't as loaded in the outfield as the Astros, anyway. If not, Tucker still has a chance to make an impact for Houston this year, but it's going to take an injury or someone struggling or both. Doesn't mean you shouldn't monitor him, just the reality of the situation. The talent is exceptional.
7. Jo Adell, OF, Los Angeles Angels
2019 stats: 40 G, .325/.399/.571, 8 HR, 5 SB, 15 BB, 40 SO at High-A Inland Empire and Double-A Mobile.
Adell is having his first tribulations of the season since his injuries, but I like to think it's just a way to prove that he's not a robot sent to hit baseballs a long way. In reality it's just a case of natural regression, because baseball is really hard. Adell is one of the five best overall prospects in baseball, and even with him playing in Double-A, he has a chance to be an impact player for the Angels in 2019.
8. Carter Kieboom, INF, Washington Nationals
2019 stats: 77 G, .314/.413/.555, 15 HR, 3 SB, 48 BB, 70 SO at Triple-A Fresno; 11 G, .128/.209/.282, 2 HR, 4 BB, 16 SO at Washington.
Kieboom has extended his hit streak to nine games, and while seven of those contests saw him pick up one knock, the other two were of the three-hit variety. The 21-year-old has been excellent in 2019, and his 'low' placement on this list has more to do with where the Nationals are than anything he's done; including his struggles in the two-week sample with Washington earlier this year. No guarantees, of course, but Kieboom is talented enough to be a strong fantasy option if he gets the chance to hit for the Nats again this summer.
9. Mitch Keller, RHP, Pittsburgh Pirates
2019 stats: 17 G, 3.10 ERA, 82 IP, 74 H, 31 BB, 96 SO at Triple-A Indianapolis; 3 G, 10.50 ERA, 12 IP, 21 H, 6 BB, 15 SO at Pittsburgh.
Keller had another strong start for the Triple-A Indians on Sunday; firing six innings of one-run baseball with five strikeouts against Durham. The 23-year-old clearly has the International League figured out, and there's not much to gain from these starts from a statistical standpoint. The MLB experiment didn't go well, but the experiment was too short to take too seriously. When Keller gets another chance this year, he's worth taking a risk on if you need the pitching help.
10. Deivi Garcia, RHP, New York Yankees
2019 stats: 16 G, 3.17 ERA, 76.2 IP, 59 H, 38 BB, 124 SO at High-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton.
Garcia made his first two appearances at the Triple-A level last week, and they went so-so. He allowed three runs with six strikeouts on Monday against Columbus, and while he allowed just one run in three innings with four strikeouts against Louisville, he also walked four. Don't get too high or too low about a two-game sample, but Garcia has legit swing-and-miss stuff, and while it's possible he makes his debut in a relief role, it's also feasible he joins the Yankees' rotation because of that ability to miss bats with a complete arsenal.
Also considered: Will Smith, C, Los Angeles Dodgers; Ryan Mountcastle, INF, Baltimore Orioles; Jesus Luzardo, LHP, Oakland Athletics; Jon Duplantier, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks