As we continue this series into May, it's time to look at our dynasty baseball under the radar prospects 5-4-23.
Last week's recommendations still look sharp. AJ Smith-Shawver and Nick Frasso continue to dominate minor league hitters, and Jonny DeLuca has nine hits in his last 15 at-bats. I appreciate these players not falling apart immediately after I wrote about them.
I've mentioned Andrew Abbott in three of these rundowns this season, so let's just keep that trend going. The guy can pitch. He's leading the minor leagues with 51 strikeouts through 25.2 IP. Hope you bought in a month ago.
Below is a rundown of five dynasty baseball prospects who are worth investing in right now. Three of them are owned in fewer than 10% of Fantrax leagues. All of these prospects should be on your radar going forward in 2023.
Dynasty Baseball Under the Radar Prospects 5-4-23
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Bryan Woo, SP, Seattle Mariners
Seattle’s work with Woo appears to be paying off. Through four starts this season, Woo has 27 strikeouts and four walks in 17 IP. He’s only allowed three runs.
Now he’s coming off his strongest start (April 29): 5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 8 K.
Bryan Woo was awesome. Final line: 5IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 8K, 72-49. The 1 hit was a bloop single. pic.twitter.com/jh30OLxMag
— Mariners Minors (@MiLBMariners) April 30, 2023
Woo underwent Tommy John surgery in college, and he finally started working his way back last season. The Mariners rewarded his efforts by starting him at Double-A for 2023.
They’ll likely be more cautious with Woo, but Seattle did jump Bryce Miller straight from Double-A to the show this week. Coming in at No. 352 on Mike Schneider’s last prospect rankings for F6P, Woo is an arm to invest in now before he climbs higher.
Carson Whisenhunt, SP, San Francisco Giants
It only took four starts at Low-A for the Giants to realize Whisenhunt needs a tougher test. They recently promoted him to High-A, and he continued his strong 2023 campaign with this line in his first start: 4 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 6 K.
Through 17.2 IP across two levels this year, Whisenhunt has 26 strikeouts to just four walks. His plus command is something you want if you’re collecting pitching prospects.
Last month, Giants Senior Director of Player Development Kyle Haines noted Whisenhunt’s impressive development and said the prospect is “looking every bit the part of a first-round quality pick who we got in the second round.” The lefty is probably due for another bump to Double-A assuming he continues this hot streak.
Zack Gelof, 2B, Oakland A’s
Gelof caught fire over the past week. In his last 26 plate attempts, he’s slashing .316 with a 1.184 OPS, 175 wRC+ and 5 SB.
Last year he showed off his power potential with 18 home runs in 96 games between Double-A and Triple-A. While he only has one homer so far this season, he’s at least displaying power to all parts of the field.
OVER the pool 😯
Second-ranked @Athletics prospect Zack Gelof goes deep for the first time this year on a 3-hit, 4-RBI night for @AviatorsLV: pic.twitter.com/rGulvRzLgM
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) April 28, 2023
His strikeout rate is still higher than you’d like, but his walk rate is up to 21% through 14 games this season. Gelof is primarily playing second base now. His above-average power projections should keep him our your radar for 12-team+ dynasty leagues.
Jordan Beck, OF, Colorado Rockies
After a slow start to 2023, Beck is absolutely crushing the ball lately. Over his last six games, he has five home runs, 13 RBIs, a 1.523 OPS and 278 wRC+.
That still brings him to a .239 batting average on the year, and he’s only walking at a 5.6% clip right now. But he walked more than he struck out in 2022, and his raw power is finally showing up in games.
Make that 5 home runs in 6 games for Jordan Beck. He’s also added another double tonight as well. pic.twitter.com/z3PhgA7g65 https://t.co/Gaat681cUz
— Next up Prospects (MiLB) (@UpNextMiLB) May 4, 2023
Beck does play at one the most hitter-friendly ballparks in High-A, so keep that in mind with any power surge out of Spokane. The 60-grade power in his profile is compelling, though.
Louie Varland, SP, Minnesota Twins
Varland is about to graduate from prospect status, so I’ll take this opportunity to finally include him in a rundown. At first glance, his stats through two MLB starts this season don’t look great. But a closer look should comfort dynasty owners.
Most beautiful 4 ER game I’ve ever witnessed 👑 pic.twitter.com/P71RY50XnB
— BatFlip Crazy (@batflipcrazy) May 4, 2023
He’s sitting on 14 strikeouts, three walks and a 2.63 xFIP through 10.2 IP. Varland comes with plus command and four pitches that could all end up being above average.
Plenty of leagues have already scooped him up – he’s at 36% ownership on Fantrax at the moment – but he’s an easy buy-low after a seemingly rocky start in the majors. If he’s not available in your league, watch to see if anyone hastily drops him.
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