The Top Prospect Report is a new weekly post here at FutureSox highlighting the top prospects in the system. More specifically, it will cover the top 15 prospects as classified by their most recent FS ranking.
This can serve as your one-stop shop to see weekly and season stat lines for all the high-end talent growing on the farm. Most players will have a few notes about their recent performance, while others may have more in-depth blurbs. How much a prospect is featured in a given week will be dictated by performance or relevant narratives.
1. Yoan Moncada, 2B
Moncada’s week juxtaposed his ceiling against his oft-mentioned swing-and-miss concerns. He started the week off with a thud, going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts but ended it with a bang. Moncada 2-for-3 last night with a home run from the right side, a walk, and a pair of stolen bases against Red Sox affiliate Pawtucket. So while it may sting to watch Chris Sale strikeout thirteen over eight innings, just remember Boston might be a little jealous in their own right.
Last Week: .250/.400/.625 (1.025 OPS), 4 H, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 SB, 4 BB, 8 K, 20 PA
Season Line: .314/.407/.569 (.975 OPS), 16 H, 1 2B, 0 3B, 4 HR, 5 RBI, 4 SB, 15.3 BB%, 33.9 K%, .407 BABIP, 59 PA
2. Lucas Giolito, RHP
The Lucas Giolito velocity watch saw him sit 93-95 MPH in the first few innings of his Wednesday start against Pawtucket. His breaking stuff was good, with his curve working particularly well, but the fastball command was off again. The first four innings were relatively clean until Jackie Bradley Jr. took Giolito deep in the fifth. A walk and home run to start the sixth inning put Giolito on shaky ground. After a mound visit, he was able to notch two outs before handing the ball over to his relief corps. Another mixed start for Giolito. Control was good, secondary stuff was getting whiffs, but fastball command was his undoing.
Last Week: 0-1, 4.77 ERA, 8 K, 3 BB, 1 GS, 5.2 IP
Season Line: 0-2, 6.43 ERA, FIP, 10.3 K/9, 5.8 BB/9, 1.9 HR/9, 3 GS, 14.0 IP
3. Michael Kopech, RHP
Kopech sputtered in two starts after wowing during his Birmingham debut. The triple digit heat was still on display but his control was more sporadic. Kopech walked eight batters over 7.2 innings pitched. He did well to pitch over, putting the first two men aboard in his latest start and may have escaped with a clean inning if it hadn’t been for a Michalczewski throwing error. He had the poise to regroup after that and mow down Tennessee until two doubles to start the fifth sent him packing. All things considered, Kopech has done quite well given the aggressiveness of his assignment.
Last Week: 0-1, 3.52 ERA, 10 K, 8 BB, 2 GS, 7.2 IP
Season Line: 0-1, 3.75 ERA, 3.91 FIP, 16.9 K/9, 7.9 BB/9, HR/9, GS, 12.0 IP
4. Reynaldo Lopez, RHP
Lopez got back on track in his start against the Norfolk Tides. He gave up a hit an inning over six innings pitched but limited the damage to just two earned runs. He posted four strikeouts to two walks and gave up his 4th home run of the season, which will be worth keeping an eye on. Lopez has the stuff to get out of jams but he’ll need to smooth out his fastball command in order to keep the ball in the park.
Last Week: 0-0, 3.00 ERA, 4 K, 2 BB, 1 GS, 6.0 IP
Season Line: 0-1, 5.02 ERA, FIP, 11.9 K/9, 5.7 BB/9, 2.5 HR/9, 3 GS, 14.1 IP
5. Zack Collins, C
It was not a kind week for Zack Collins. His lone hit was an RBI double and that was back on Sunday. Ten strikeouts in 20 at bats is rare for Collins, who has some swing-and-miss in his game but not nearly to that extent. He got the day off yesterday so a rejuvenated Collins will look to bounce back over the weekend.
Last Week: .050/.200/.100 (.300 OPS), 1 H, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 4 BB, 10 K, 25 PA
Season Line: .205/.345/.364 (.709 OPS), 9 H, 4 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 18.2 BB%, 29.1 K%, .286 BABIP, 55 PA
6. Carson Fulmer, RHP
Fulmer twirled a quality start against the Pawtucket Red Sox and had good control over six innings with just one walk. The only earned run came via a home run in the first inning but it was smooth sailing after that. Fulmer mitigated any scoring opportunities by inducing three double play balls.
Last Week: 1-0, 1.50 ERA, 3 K, 1 BB, 1 GS, 6.0 IP
Season Line: 2-1, 4.24 ERA, 4.97 FIP, 5.89 K/9, 1.59 BB/9, 1.59 HR/9, 3 GS, 17.0 IP
7. Alec Hansen, RHP
Hansen made quick work of the Asheville tourists, tossing six innings of two run ball. More impressive was his six strikeouts to just one walk. After walking five over 3.2 innings to begin the year, Hansen has posted back to back starts of only issuing a single free pass. With control being his kryptonite to reaching his vaulted ceiling, this is surely a positive sign. John Calvagno, who runs Notes From The Sally, was on hand for Hansen’s start and you can read his write up here.
Last Week: 1-0, 3.00 ERA, 6 K, 1 BB, 1 GS, 6.0 IP
Season Line: 1-1, 3.68 ERA, 2.61 FIP, 11.05 K/9, 4.30 BB/9, 0.00 HR/9, 3 GS, 14.2 IP
8. Zack Burdi, RHP
Zack Burdi blew his first save of the season. He had a two run lead to work with against Northfolk and saw it quickly dissipate on the heels of a leadoff double, a wild pitch, a walk, and a game ending triple that set off fireworks for the tides. The best closers are said to have a short memory and Burdi lived by that adage when he got the save against Pawtucket and notched three strikeouts.
Last Week: 0-0, 18.00 ERA, 1 SV, 3 K, 1 BB, 2 G, 1.0 IP
Season Line: 0-1, 5.79 ERA, 2.16 FIP, 17.36 K/9, 5.79 BB/9, 0.00 HR/9, 5 G, 2 SV, 4.2 IP
9. Luis Alexander Basabe, OF
Basabe flashed a better eye over four games this week. He had three free passes to just two strikeouts and put the bat on the ball as well. In fact, Basabe had a hit in each of his contests and is now on a five game hitting streak dating back to April 13th. Oh and he swiped two bases for good measure.
Last Week: .286/.389/.286 (.675 OPS), 4 H, 2 RBI, 2 SB, 3 BB, 2 K, 18 PA
Season Line: .226/.314/.355 (.669 OPS), 7 H, 0 2B, 2 3B, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 3 SB, 11.11 BB%, 22.22 K%, .273 BABIP, 36 PA
10. Dane Dunning, RHP
It happened. Dane Dunning gave up his first walk of the season. Dunning gave up one free pass in his win against Asheville. He threw his third quality start of the season with no runs over six frames while surrendering just four hits. Dunning added five strikeouts to a growing season total and lowered his WHIP to a cool 0.60. How was your week?
Note: John Calvagno from Notes From The Sally was also in attendance for Dunning’s start. You can read his write up here.
Last Week: 1-0, 0.00 ERA, 5 K, 1 BB, 1 GS, 6.0 IP
Season Line: 1-0, 0.45 ERA, 1.33 FIP, 11.70 K/9, 0.45 BB/9, 0.00 HR/9, 3 GS, 20.0 IP
11. Jordan Stephens, RHP
12. Alex Call, OF
Alex Call sustained a rib injury and has been out since the weekend. He’s slated to undergo an MRI but is likely ticketed for a DL stint.
Last Week: (Only two games) 1 2B, 2 RBI, 2 BB, 3 K, 9 PA
Season Line: .244/.311/.366 (.677 OPS), 10 H, 3 2B, 1 3B, 0 HR, 5 RBI, 2 SB, 6.7 BB%, 24.4 K%, .333 BABIP, 45 PA
13. Spencer Adams, RHP
Adams was saddled with his third loss of the season even though he pitched well enough to win. He went seven frames against Tennessee, giving up plenty of hits (8) but limiting the runs (3). The strikeout numbers have continued to be on the low end for Adams who no longer works as a power pitcher but gets by on his excellent control. Speaking of that, Adams has issued just one walk over 18.2 IP.
Last Week: 0-1, 3.86 ERA, 2 K, 0 BB, 1 GS, 7.0 IP
Season Line: 0-0, 3.86 ERA, 2.82 FIP, 4.82 K/9, 0.48 BB/9, 0.48 HR/9, 3 GS, 18.2 IP
14. Jameson Fisher, OF
Jameson Fisher is looking like an early 4th round steal as he carries a .906 OPS in Low-A Kanny through the first two weeks of the season. He has 15 hits to go along with a walk rate of 12.5% and while it’s early, all Fisher has done since college is rake. Whether it’s at Southern Louisiana, Rookie Ball, or Kannapolis, his bat appears to travel well.
Last Week: .316/.381/.429 (.810 OPS), 6 H, 1 3B, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 2 BB, 3 K, 21 PA
Season Line: .313/.386/.481 (.906 OPS), 15 H, 2 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 10 RBI, 2 SB, 12.5 BB%, 22.9 K%, 58 PA
15. Luis Curbelo, SS
*In extended spring training*
16. Adam Engel, OF
With a plethora of opportunities existing in Chicago, this is about the worst time for Engel to go cold. Yet, two weeks into the season his line is abysmal. He epitomizes the toolshed type player who just hasn’t had the approach to match. Engel has relentlessly toyed with his swing in the past. He found success in the Arizona Fall League, trying out a new pre-swing move and getting into a rhythm before the pitch. But after early struggles in Birmingham, Engel found an emphasis on mechanics wasn’t a formula for consistency.
He minimized the move in his swing and was able to get his timing right. After once again being promoted to the Barons, Engel got hot and parlayed that into a stint with Charlotte to close out 2016. His strikeout rate skyrocketed with the Knights ballooning to just over 30 percent. In a small sample in 2017, those swing-and-miss issues have persisted. With a history of stable strikeout rates and solid walk rates, there’s a chance Engel’s eye can translate against higher level competition. The AFL was one example, albeit in the extreme. While tools have propped up Engel, consistently keeping him on prospect radar, production is all that can keep him afloat at this point. He’s a high floor player with plus-speed and a touted outfield glove, but he’ll need find any sort of consistency to ever be more than a role player in Chicago. Time isn’t up quite yet, but the clock is ticking at a faster rate. Adam only got in a few games this week, as he was given a 3-game break.
Last Week: (Only 10 PAs) 1 H, 2 BB, 2 K, SB, 10 PA
Season Line: .079/.205/.079 (.283 OPS), 3 H, 1 RBI, 1 SB, 13.6 BB%, 31.8 K%, .091 BABIP, 44 PA
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Filed under: Top Prospect Report