This series will look at prospects and show whether they are worth an investment on your fantasy team. Every owner knows that the secret to a strong minors system is knowing who to throw away and knowing who to keep. Each player featured in this series will be given one of the following recommendations:
- Hold ’em : If you own this prospect, hang tight. While times may seem rough, the talent is worth holding onto.
- Fold ’em : If you own this prospect, now is the time to sell while they may still have some name value.
- Walk Away: This prospect is not worth paying attention to in your league.
- Run: Get to the waiver wire immediately and put a claim in for this prospect.
Before looking deeper at Luis Sardinas, SS who was recently called up by the Texas Rangers, check out his base hit in his first major league at bat.
The Texas Rangers signed Luis Sardinas out of Venezuala in 2009, the same year they signed fellow 16-year old Jurickson Profar. Sardinas was already a standout with his glove and the future looked bright for both international shortstops. Injuries took a toll on Sardinas early on and he never regained the prospect status once shared with Profar. With a broken finger in 2010 and a dislocated shoulder in 2011, Sardinas missed significant time before making good on some of his promise in 2012. He was also given the opportunity to play in the AFL where he hit .318/.375/.455.
Heading into 2013, Sardinas was ranked as the 86th best prospect by Baseball Prospectus and #84 by Baseball America. Luis Sardinas spent most of 2013 in high A before being promoted to the AA Frisco Roughriders. His season looked similar to 2012 with a good average, good speed and an excellent strike out rate.
Sardinas was ranked 87th in my top 100 and #72 by Baseball Prospectus (left off BA). He logged 15 at bats in spring training scoring 5 runs on just 4 hits before being assigned to minor league camp along with his double play partner Rougned Odor. Through the first two weeks of the season, Sardinas was hitting just .226, though his 5.5% K rate, and low BABIP lead me to put that under the heading Small Sample Size.
Sardinas’ stay in Texas will be a short one as Adrian Beltre will come off the DL Thursday, meaning for those in redraft leagues, Sardinas is a Walk Away player. Without a significant injury to Elvis Andrus he will not be of any fantasy value in 2014. However, when a top prospect (yes, I said it: “top” prospect) is called up there is reason for excitement. At 6’1″, 150 lbs the switch-hitter isn’t built for power but has excellent speed and the ability to hit for contact from both sides of the plate. While he’ll never produce power numbers, Sardinas should be able to hit for a good average and steal 30 bases in the major leagues. Sardinas already has the glove to stick at shortstop, in fact his defensive profile is enough to carry him for a long career at the major league level. With Elvis Andrus signed through 2022, it remains to be seen where/what the future holds for Luis Sardinas. What is known is Luis Sardinas should have a nice career playing shortstop in the big leagues as soon as 2015; and there is fantasy value to that.
Recommendation: Hold ‘Em. Luis Sardinas will be sent back to the minors this week, but do no let him disappear from your radar, particularly if you play in a deep dynasty league. With gold glove caliber defense, Sardinas will one day play 160 games a year at the weakest of positions, while helping in stolen bases, average, and potentially runs.
Ryan McMahon, 3B, Colorado Rockies 19-year-old third baseman just cracked his 7th home run last night in low A ball. He also has walked 16% of the time and is batting .340. If he is not owned in any of your keeper/dynasty leagues, this is probably your last chance to grab him. Prospect Ranking in 2014 N/A. Recommendation: Run
Andrew Heaney, SP, Miami Marlins 22-year-old left-handed starting pitcher, Heaney has made 4 starts in AA this season. His numbers are videogame-like: 27% K rate, 3% BB rate, 0.86 WHIP, 1.48 ERA. He’s ready for the majors and could get called up at any time. Prospect Ranking in 2014 40. Recommendation: Run
Alen Hanson, SS, Pittsburgh Pirates Hanson has struggled in AA since his promotion in late 2013. In close to 200 AB, he has walked 12 times while striking out 39 times with 1 home run and a .241 AVG. He’s also committed 10 errors during this stretch. While there is still time at 21 years of age for him to right the ship, I’d investigate any opportunity to get a decent price for him. Prospect Ranking in 2014 65. Recommendation: Fold ‘Em
Jameson Taillon, SP, Pittsburgh Pirates Sticking with the Pirates, Jameson Taillon underwent Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2014 season.
The beautiful thing about setbacks is that they introduce us to our biggest strengths. Missing the competition today #onedayatatime
— Jameson Taillon (@JTaillon19) April 20, 2014
Prospect Ranking in 2014 22. Recommendation: Hold ‘Em
Eugenio Suarez, SS, Detroit Tigers Any time I can feature a Detroit prospect, I’m going to take advantage. With Alex Gonzalez released, Suarez find himself one step closer to the starting shortstop position in Detroit. While Jose Iglesias is expected to fully recover by next year, Suarez is showing signs of being able to help Detroit right now. In AA he’s hitting .260/.327/.540 after impressing the Detroit brass in spring training. I’d love to pimp him some more but… Prospect Ranking in 2014 N/A. Recommendation: Walk Away
Mookie Betts, 2B, Boston Red Sox. Betts is absolutely destroying AA, hitting .440/.483/.704 with 4 SB and a 5:7 BB/K ratio. With Dustin Pedroia apparently over his wrist injury, Betts appears to have lost his opportunity for promotion in 2014. Or has he? With Sizemore, Victorino, and Bradley Jr the primary outfielders in Boston, how likely is it that the Red Sox decide they need to get Betts in their immediate plans? Either way, this is an awesome talent and could very well be a top offensive 2B in the majors. Prospect Ranking in 2014 67. Recommendation: Run
If you’re gonna play the game boy, you gotta learn to play it right