Prospects are the backbone of any trade deadline season. Here’s a look around the minor leagues…
- Both Baseball America’s organizational rankings and rival sources from around the industry have unflattering opinions about the Diamondbacks’ minor league system, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic writes. The prevailing view is that the D’Backs have several players who project as “a collection of back-end starters and relievers alongside utilitymen” but perhaps no impact regulars at the MLB level. With not much interest in their prospects, the D’Backs may need to deal from their 25-man roster to address their many needs this offseason, though that could also hurt their depth.
- Clint Frazier and Bradley Zimmer get much of the attention when discussing Indians prospects, though beyond those two top names, Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer lists several intriguing minor leaguers in the Tribe’s system. Any of these youngsters could be of interest to the Brewers, as Pluto cites the recent reports of the Indians’ interest in Jonathan Lucroy and/or Milwaukee’s top relievers.
- One Indians prospect not mentioned by Pluto is shortstop Yu-Cheng Chang, who ESPN’s Buster Olney reports was discussed by the Yankees when the two sides discussed Aroldis Chapman. (The Tribe looked like the possible favorites for Chapman at one point today, though now it looks like the star closer will be going to the Cubs.) Chang, who hails from Taiwan and turns 21 in August, has put up solid hitting numbers at high-A ball this season and was ranked by Baseball America as Cleveland’s 16th-best prospect prior to 2016.
- Cuban third baseman Yanio Perez has drawn interest from the Astros, Padres, Rangers, Reds and Rockies, as per a report from MLB Pipeline (Twitter link). The 20-year-old was ranked by Pipeline as the 10th-best player available in this year’s July 2 international market, and he is known to have impressive raw power, makeup and above-average speed. Perez is subject to international bonus pool guidelines.