Four Dynasty Baseball Prospects Who Are Excelling

by Bailey Srebnik
Four Dynasty Baseball Prospects Who Are Excelling

Welcome back, y'all. In this article, I wanted to discuss four Dynasty Baseball prospects who are excelling.

Three of these prospects are players I have written about previously and wanted to provide an update on. So, let's start things off with a player I have not yet covered: Yiddi Cappe.

Four Dynasty Baseball Prospects Who Are Excelling

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Yiddi Cappe, Infielder, Miami Marlins

Yiddi Cappe was the Marlins' top prospect of their 2021 International class. He signed a $3.5 million contract in January of 2021. He made his stateside debut this year in the FCL, and absolutely raked. He posted a .305/.364/.517 slashline in 30 games, with six home runs and six stolen bases. He had a 137 wRC+ and limited the strikeouts with a 14.4 K%. This earned him a quick promotion to Low-A Jupiter, where he has continued to hit.

His power has fallen off a bit, as indicated by his .358 SLG and zero home runs through his first 13 games; however, his plate discipline is still elite. He has struck out just four times in 58 plate appearances, which is good for a 6.9 K%. Coincidentally, he has walked four times as well, giving him an identical BB%.

Among qualified hitters in Major League Baseball this season, Luis Arraez currently leads the league with an 8.1% strikeout rate. That is more than a full percentage point higher than Cappe. In fact, among qualified players, no MLB player has had a strikeout rate below 7% since Victor Martinez did it in 2014 (excluding the shortened 2020 season).

Cappe's sample size is extremely small, and likely unsustainable to a degree, but it shows signs of significant promise, especially considering his K% did improve after his promotion. He is still hitting the ball well, as he currently has a .302 average. He has legitimate star upside, and tapping more into his power will help him reach his ceiling.

Jose Salas, Infielder, Miami Marlins

Speaking of Marlins infield prospects with star upside, welcome Jose Salas to the chat. I most recently wrote about Salas in April 2022, and said "Salas will grow into more game power as he develops, and then he will be one of the top prospects in the sport."

Well, he certainly appears to be on the right track. Salas began his breakout and had a June to remember, slashing .333/.433/.560, with three home runs, six stolen bases, and a 183 wRC+ in 21 games. This hot month earned him FSL Player of the Month honors, and a promotion to High-A Beloit.

On the surface, Salas has struggled a bit since joining the Sky Carp, as evidenced by his 80 wRC+. However, his slashline is similar to his stats from his first go-round with Jupiter in 2019. Which is to say, I am not concerned by his first month in High-A.

He is 19 years old, much younger than the competition, and is adjusting. Another interesting stat is that his walk rate in Jupiter in 2021, Jupiter in 2022, and Beloit in 2022 are all the same: 8.9%. Salas has had consistently good plate discipline, which is an important foundation for a hitter. I am expecting him to heat up before the end of the season.

Tink Hence, Right-Handed Pitcher, St. Louis Cardinals

Checking in again on Tink Hence, he has thrown 23 innings since our last update. And, well, he certainly looks like the real deal. He is up to 35 innings on the season, with a 1.03 ERA, 1.07 FIP, 0.77 WHIP,  and 15.17 K/9. He has also found himself popping up on Top 100 prospect lists across the industry.

The reverse splits discussed in my article about Hence are still prevalent, as left-handed batters are currently slashing .102/.167/.143 in 54 plate appearances against him. Righties are not doing much better, as they slash .179/.257/.239 in 74 plate appearances against him.

What really gets me is the strikeout percentage. Hence has struck-out 57.4% of the lefties he has faced, and 37.8% of the righties. Both numbers are elite, of course, but especially the strikeout rate against lefties.

A right-handed pitcher striking out more than half the lefties he faces is absurd, and goes to show just how nasty and deceptive Hence's pitch mix is. I think his fastball and curveball are legitimately 80-grade, and he is a top-ten pitching prospect in the sport.

Hence, the sky is the limit.

Elly De La Cruz, Infielder, Cincinnati Reds

Elly De La Cruz has risen to become arguably the most exciting prospect in all of baseball. The hype is off the charts, and I am here for it. Back in January 2022, I said "I would rank De La Cruz within the top 50 of a top 100 prospect ranking," at a time in which most or all lists did not even have him in the Top 100 yet.

I then stated, "I think he will be top-25, if not higher, this time next year." Well, I could have shot higher with the prediction, as he has already risen to top-ten territory on most lists. Right now for me personally, the only two prospects I would consider ranking ahead of Elly De La Cruz are Corbin Carroll and Gunnar Henderson.

The biggest question with De La Cruz is his plate discipline, as he has posted a strikeout rate above 30% in High-A and Double-A this year. At the same time, he has hit 24 home runs across the two levels, and has a wRC+ of 140 or higher at both levels. He is 20 years old and is posting a .302/.342/.594 slashline in 15 games in Double-A.

We are looking at a player with 80-grade power, 70-grade speed, and a promising hit tool. If he continues to keep the strikeout rate in check, he could soon be one of the best players in all of baseball.

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