This week we're looking at 2023 dynasty baseball AL Central prospects and what their impact might be in the majors this season.
This division might be one of the weaker ones in baseball for prospects right now. Keith Law put four of the AL Central's five teams in the bottom half of his farm system rankings. But there are a few hidden gems in the mix, especially among the players that we should see moving up to the majors this season.
So far I've looked a the NL East, AL East, and NL Central. As a reminder, this series is taking a look at the prospects from each division that have the potential to play a somewhat significant role for dynasty managers this season.
Some of these guys might not impact your lineup until the year's second half, but you should keep an eye on all of them for any buying windows (or opportunities to sell).
2023 Dynasty Baseball AL Central Prospects
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Chicago White Sox
Oscar Colas, OF
Colas is projected to play a sizable role for the White Sox this season. White Sox manager Pedro Grifol said Colas will be "given every opportunity to see if he can become our right fielder on a daily basis."
Oscar Colás vs. Davis Martin in live batting practice. Colás wins the battle by absolutely demolishing a homer off the batter’s eye in dead center field. Crushed. pic.twitter.com/ngit1nqxuE
— Vinnie Duber (@VinnieDuber) February 24, 2023
ATC has him down for 352 PA, 14 HRs, 41 RBIs and a .717 OPS.
I called Colas an under-the-radar prospect last year, citing his impressive 2022 campaign. He's one to keep a close eye on in spring training. Dynasty owners should not wait around to see how spring goes, though. His price will see a decent jump if he wins that job.
Bo Naylor, C
Naylor offers a potential blend of power and speed at the catcher position. Between Double-A and Triple-A in 2022, he slashed .263/.392/.496 with 21 homers and 20 steals. His MLB playing time likely hinges on his ability to improve behind the plate. Naylor could be a good trade target in dynasty leagues for owners looking for more speed, especially at catcher.
George Valera, OF
He's a prospect who seems like he's been around forever, but he's still just 22 years old. Valera is recovering from yet another hand injury, but he hopefully won't miss much time this spring.
#Guardians 22yr old OF prospect George Valera going deep during live BP out at organizations Goodyear Development Complex. Valera looking ready to go after a 2nd hamate bone surgery in December. #ForTheLand pic.twitter.com/0UEld1dIw0
— Guardians Prospective (@CleGuardPro) February 20, 2023
We could see Valera up with the Guardians later on in 2023. He's one of the more polarizing prospects among rankings. The price is down, and OBP leagues should keep him in mind when looking for cheaper value.
Reese Olson, RHP
Olson continues to improve his command and brings a couple good secondary pitches with his arsenal. Last year he posted a 33.1% K rate and a 7.5% walk rate in Double-A. But a closer look at his 2022 reveals more concern.
He posted an ERA higher than 4.50 in 11 starts last year, and he only went 6 IP in four starts. He's projected to pitch around 40 innings in the majors this year, but much of that could come out of the bullpen. He's another name to watch that has mid-rotation upside and is currently cheap/possibly free in most dynasty leagues.
Kansas City Royals
Drew Waters, OF
Waters posted 80th percentile sprint speed and a 110.6 MPH max EV last year, and his 125 wRC+ in 32 games with the Royals is better than expected. But the 36.7% strikeout rate is atrocious.
Now he's dealing with an oblique injury that will sideline him for much, if not all, of spring training, which could jeopardize his starting opportunity in 2023. Waters is not much more than a dart throw right now in dynasty.
Royce Lewis, SS
A second ACL tear is expected to keep Lewis sidelined until mid-summer at least. It's a huge letdown after he destroyed Triple-A last year with a 149 wRC+.
The injury concerns are really the only issue keeping his stock down. This is a good time to buy for dynasty owners who are rebuilding or at least hoping to be more competitive in the coming years. ATC already projects him for a 109 wRC+ in 58 games this season.
Edouard Julien, INF
What do you know, another prospect from my under-the-radar series. Julien broke out in 2022 and then followed that campaign up with a dominant performance in the Arizona Fall League.
He's gained a bit of hype leading up to the 2023 season, but he still doesn't have a true defensive home which could give some owners pause. He's been one of my top targets this offseason. Projections only see him getting a cup of coffee in the MLB this year, but injuries could easily get him a bigger opportunity.
Hope you enjoyed the 2023 Dynasty Baseball AL East Prospects. Check out more excellent Fantasy Baseball content from the F6P team!