Monday Mailbag: July 3rd

Written by: Ray Butler (@CoachRayButler)

Follow us on Twitter: @Prospects365

The latest weekly feature on I get asked several questions on a daily basis on Twitter. Monday Mailbag is simply a chance for you to have your fantasy questions answered in long-form instead of in a 140 character tweet. I plan on answering the best questions I’m asked in the mailbag each week.

Here’s the best questions I’ve been asked the past week:

Question from @tonybps1 on Twitter: How are A.J. Reed and Rowdy Tellez doing? Do either of them have a future in the majors?

Answer: In a word? Meh. Tellez is triple slashing .204/.274/.331 in AAA. He has 6 HRs and 32 RBIs in 277 plate appearances. It’s been a disappointing first half for Tellez, no two ways about it. I’m still a fan (though he missed out on my midseason top 100 prospect rankings), and I still think he’ll eventually be an everyday MLB first baseman. I’m looking for him to have a strong second half. I’m more skeptical on Reed. His peripherals look better than Tellez’s: .240/.334/.435 with 13 HRs and 48 RBIs in 326 AAA plate appearances this season. The elephant in the room for Reed, though, is still alive and well. .173/.284/.333 with 3 HRs and 11 RBIs in 95 plate appearances facing a left-handed pitcher. At this point, he projects as a high-end platoon first baseman, though at 24 years old he still has plenty of time to improve.

Question sent via email: You’re rebuilding a fantasy team and have stocked up on elite, top-tier prospects. Your active players at each position are average. You now have the option to swap your entire farm system in a trade for Mike Trout, but following the trade you can only roster Angels minor leaguers in your farm system. Worth it?

Answer: First of all, this is an excellent, excellent question. I think I make the trade. Here’s why: I attempted to trade for Mike Trout prior to the start of the 2017 regular season. My leaguemate demanded Noah Syndergaard, Trea Turner, J.D. Martinez, Carlos Martinez in return (I guess you get to demand a king’s ransom when you roster the best baseball player on the planet). I didn’t make that trade in real life, but I’d make it in this scenario. About a day after acquiring Trout, I’d put him on the market and hope for a return similar to the one I was asked to give in real life. That would give my roster three or four top 100 active players, which I could look to trade for additional pieces at a later time if desired. My farm system would consist of guys like Jahmai Jones, Matt Thaiss, Brandon Marsh, Jaime Barria, Jordon Adell, and Griffin Canning. Certainly not fantastic (well below-average, actually), but the trade would immediately make me more competitive and my team more valuable.

Question sent via email: Curious what you think. Is it better to bank extra hitting prospects for a pitcher? I feel pretty deep at hitter so I’m gun shy to trade pitching for hitting.

Answer: I strongly believe that elite hitting prospects are the most valuable prospects in baseball. Pitching is so volatile, and there are so many more things that can go wrong with pitching prospects with position-player prospects, regardless of level or talent. I think that’s why elite position player prospects are ranked higher than elite pitching prospects by the industry in general. Granted, you still need to take each potential trade case-by-case and examine all aspects, but in doing so, remember that pitching prospects come with more risk and (almost always) a slower path and ETA.

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Featured image courtesy of Tip of the Tower

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