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Fantasy Baseball: Prospect Watch Week 10

Kyle analyzes four MLB prospects who could be ready to help your fantasy baseball teams in the near future!

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - MAY 22: Porter Hodge #37 of the Chicago Cubs delivers a pitch in his MLB debut during the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Wrigley Field on May 22, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
1B/3B Deyvison De Los Santos, Arizona Diamondbacks

Possessing the best raw power in the minors, De Los Santos is not only the first baseman of the future for the Diamondbacks but a fantasy superstar of the future. Paired with his top raw power, De Los Santos has produced the highest average exit velocities amongst his minor league peers. Finishing his first AA season a year ago, De Los Santos slashed .254/.297/.431 with 20 home runs and 61 RBI. His .297 was low and way below his career OBP of .345, but the 20-year-old is off to a torrid pace this season, slashing a combined .365/.423/.671 with 14 home runs and 41 RBI across AA and AAA. The Arizona prospect is a month away from his 21st birthday, and should he continue to produce at AAA Reno, he has a realistic chance of being called up by July. The 2019 international signing will be a hot commodity when he is called up, but he will be easily attained as many have yet to add him to their radar. A very similar prototype to Tampa Bay’s Yandy Diaz, Deyvison De Los Santos is a player fantasy baseball players need to monitor immediately.

OF Colby Thomas, Oakland Athletics

In recent years, it has been rare for an Athletics prospect to get fantasy owners excited. However, outfield prospect Colby Thomas’s combination of power and speed will be valuable across all fantasy baseball leagues. The 2022 3rd round pick is slashing .272/.319/.549 with 12 home runs, 36 RBI, and ten stolen bases for AA Midland. He is well on his way to surpassing his 2023 career year, where he set career-best numbers with 18 home runs, 82 RBI, 87 runs scored, and 25 stolen bases. Thomas has a knack for hitting the ball the other way while posting a low strikeout rate and high walk rate. His ability to get on a base will be valuable for fantasy leagues, and should his call come this season, Thomas could be a free-agent pickup that turns out to be a league winner, especially with the high number of outfield injuries already plaguing fantasy rosters.

RHP Porter Hodge, Chicago Cubs

The Cubs have two main areas for improvement on their current Major League roster: a lack of offensive production from the third base position and a question mark in the ninth inning. In-house prospect Porter Hodge may solve the closer issue for the Chicago Cubs. Prior to his May 17 call-up, Hodge opened the season at AA Tennessee, posting a 0.00 ERA, 0.50 WHIP, and 18 strikeouts in 11 innings. He quickly jumped to AAA Iowa, appearing in 10 games before Chicago decided to call him to the Majors. Moving to a full-time relief role a season ago, Hodge has transformed himself into the closer of the present, possessing a fastball that sits at 95-96 MPH, reaching 98, that he pairs with a wipeout slider and changeup that has become a reliable pitch. Since May 17th, Hodge has appeared in three games, posting a 0.00 ERA, 0.42 WHIP, and six strikeouts in 2.1 innings. Now is the time for fantasy owners to grab Hodge because he will take over the ninth-inning duties quickly, and he may be gone before numerous fantasy owners catch wind of his taking over the closer role.

RHP Jaden Hamm, Detroit Tigers

The 2023 5th-round pick has owned AA hitting, posting a 1.04 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, and 47 strikeouts in 34.2 innings (9 GS). 2024 is his first full season in the minors, but he fared well last season, in five starts, following the draft. He finished his five starts, posting a 0.00 ERA, 0.33 WHIP, and a strikeout per inning. Hamm’s control positions himself with some of the top pitching talents in the minors, and he possesses a mid-90s fastball with late movement and a high-level curve. He needs to continue the development of his changeup, as it will be hard for him to stick in a starter role with only two reliable pitches. Hamm is a year away from his callup, and while the sample size is small, Hamm has the makings of a reliable back-end rotation starter.