Prospect Team Of The Month: July
An all-star team comprised of prospects, based on their performance in the minors during the month of July. Monthly all-prospect team archives available here.
The runs above average (RAA) estimates are calculated by Baseball America. For batters, weighted on-base average (wOBA) is used to calculate RAA, and for pitchers, runs allowed per nine innings (R/9) is used.
C Austin Allen • Padres High Class A Lake Elsinore (California)
The lefthanded-hitting catcher ranks among the California League leaders for home runs, RBIs and slugging percentage. Austin caught 15 games in July, mixing in time at first base and DH, but had allowed about twice as many stolen-base attempts as other qualified league catchers.
1B Dominic Smith • Mets Triple-A Las Vegas (Pacific Coast)
The Mets traded big league first baseman Lucas Duda, meaning Smith's time is near. He leads the Pacific Coast League in hits and doubles and has established a personal best with 16 home runs. Smith seems years removed from his one-homer full-season debut at low Class A Savannah in 2014.
2B Esteury Ruiz • Padres Rookie-level AZL Padres (Arizona)
An increasing number of prospects in short-season leagues have been traded this year, with the 18-year-old Ruiz being a prime example. The Padres acquired Ruiz, who led all minor league second basemen with 17 extra-base hits and 10 stolen bases in July, from the Royals for a trio of big league pitchers.
3B Nick Senzel • Reds Double-A Pensacola (Southern)
The No. 2 overall pick in the draft last year produced his best month of 2017 in July with a .989 OPS that included his best showings for home runs (four) and RBIs (16). Senzel has used his excellent gap-to-gap power to rank among the minor league leaders for doubles.
SS Fernando Tatis Jr. • Padres Low Class A Fort Wayne (Midwest)
Tatis narrowly edged the Phillies' J.P. Crawford (.635) for best slugging percentage by a minor league shortstop in July, but he held a more decisive advantage in terms of speed (12 steals to one). Tatis, a true power-speed threat, even out-walked the notoriously patient Crawford, 19 to 16.
OF D.J. Peters • Dodgers High Class A Rancho Cucamonga (California)
The 21-year-old, 6-foot-6 Peters has been a Three True Outcomes superstar in the California League, ranking first or second in home runs, walks and strikeouts. The Dodgers skipped Peters, thanks to his plus raw power, from Rookie-level Ogden last year to Rancho Cucamonga this season.
OF Jhailyn Ortiz • Phillies Short-season Williamsport (New York-Penn)
The Phillies signed Ortiz, who had the most power in the 2015 international class, for $4 million out of the Dominican Republic. He faces questions about his athleticism and hitting rhythm, but so far Ortiz has done nothing but hit in the New York-Penn League.
OF Jose Siri • Reds Low Class A Dayton (Midwest)
Siri set a Midwest League record when he recently notched a hit in his 36th straight game, punctuating a season in which he ranks among the league leaders for home runs, stolen bases, hits and slugging percentage. The fifth-year pro already is 22, but his tools have translated to results this year.
RHP Jon Duplantier • Diamondbacks High Class A Visalia (California)
Duplantier's breakthrough season rolled on in July, even after a promotion to the California League. Using a strong three-pitch mix, he ranks among the minor league leaders in ERA, opponent average and WHIP.
RHP Wilmer Font • Dodgers Triple-A Oklahoma City (Pacific Coast)
Though he's already 27, has washed out of three organizations and has pitched in an independent league, Font is enjoying a remarkable season in the Pacific Coast League thanks to improved command of his offspeed pitches. He leads the league in ERA and strikeouts.
RHP Jordan Hicks • Cardinals High Class A Palm Beach (Florida State)
The Houston prep and 2015 draft pick got off to a shaky start at low Class A Peoria but found his footing with a July promotion to the Florida State League. With an excellent fastball and breaking ball, Hicks needs only improved command to reach his potential.
LHP Alex Wells • Orioles Low Class A Delmarva (South Atlantic)
Incredibly, the 20-year-old Australian southpaw didn't allow a walk or a run in July, propelling him to the front of the line in the South Atlantic League ERA race. Wells doesn't have big stuff, but so far as a pro he has recorded a 2.24 ERA.
LHP Joey Wentz • Braves Low Class A Rome (South Atlantic)
Wentz's two-sport background in high school helps him repeat his mechanics and command his pitches. The 6-foot-5 lefthander has allowed just three home runs this season, thanks to excellent control, while ranking third in the South Atlantic League in strikeouts.
Podcast: Breaking Down The A's Potential Move To Las Vegas
J.J. Cooper and Kyle Glaser go in-depth on the A's potential relocation to Las Vegas and plenty more.