Nearly two weeks after the MLB All-Star Break, teams are gearing up for the stretch run. The playoffs are just a couple months away and the best teams can start to see their golden ticket just within their grasps. Teams will be making key trades and promoting their top prospects. It’s time to either start thinking about next year, or to go in and aim for the pennant. Avid fantasy baseball players also understand that this is a crucial time during the season, and finding the next great fantasy baseball free agent can be the difference between fighting for a piece of the pot and sitting on the sidelines. But enough of the foreplay, let’s take a look at a few hot hitting free agents and top prospects that should be getting the call.
Now let’s look at a couple of top prospects who should be immediate contributors to their respective clubs. Both Alex Bregman and David Dahl will be promoted come Monday and are worth adding in standard mixed leagues if in need of offense. Alex Bregman was recently rated the No. 8 player in Baseball America’s prospect rankings for the Houston Astros. At 22 years old, the 2015 second overall pick has hit at every level in the minors since arriving last summer. Recently promoted to Triple-A, Bregman is still making it look easy, hitting .333 with 6 home runs in just 78 at bats. Although Bregman is a natural shortstop, manager A.J. Hinch has already talked about trying him out at third base. It is obvious that the top priority is getting Bregman’s bat in the lineup, and so is picking him up off of free agency.
Another top prospect that could start producing right away is Colorado Rockies outfielder David Dahl. Baseball America’s No. 40 prospect has had a breakout year, hitting .314/.394/.469 with 18 home runs, 61 RBI, and 17 stolen bases in 92 games between Double-A and Triple-A. The Rockies will get to see what they have in Dahl when they play in Baltimore, and with Carlos Gonzalez and Charlie Blackmon on the trade block, Dahl could be an intriguing pick up for the rest of the season.
If in need of some pitching reinforcement, take a flyer on Anthony DeSclafani, who missed the first two months of the season with a nagging oblique injury. Since rejoining the Cincinnati Reds rotation, DeSclafani has been nothing short of magnificent, owning a 5-0 record with a 2.50 ERA and 40-9 K/BB in 50 innings of work. Owning a 5-0 record on the win-starved Reds is nothing short of a miracle, making DeSclafani a popular target for teams in a playoff push. If traded to a contending team, DeSclafani could make for a sneaky pick up.
Michael Brantley’s replacement Tyler Naquin has been demanding attention, hitting .324 with 12 home runs, 29 RBI, 32 runs, and three steals in 176 at-bats. He has been a pleasant surprise for the Cleveland Indians, and the dynamic rookie has come out of the gates hot following the All-Star break, including a two home run six RBI game. Take a chance on his consistent playing time and ride the wave while it lasts. Another impressive rookie who also owns a two home run game recently is San Diego Padres second baseman Ryan Schimpf. Though a bit sluggish in the batting average area, he provides genuine pop at a light hitting position. With four home runs in his last five games, Schimpf could help any fantasy baseball owners in need of home run help.
As always, stay vigilant and keep both eyes glued to the free agent wire. For those playing for some real prize money, stay tuned for further advice next week regarding fantasy baseball free agent pick ups. Thanks for tuning in and good luck to everyone in their playoff push!