Jon Hegglund is a member of the Baseball Prospectus Fantasy Team and a co-host of the Flags Fly Forever podcast.
Jon Hegglund: Hello! I've just had a big bowl of leftover chili for lunch and Nick Castellanos officially murdered analytics today. So we're set for some Friday afternoon fireworks! Let's light that fuse...
Spotted cow (Rockford ): Of the injured sp's and underachievers this year, which would be worth paying for in planning for next year if you can get cheap. Just a few names I was considering snell(cheap compared to preseason this year), Foltynewicz, Severino, Kluber, and Taillon. Thanks!!!
Jon Hegglund: Well, Taillon is on the shelf until 2021 (wow, that felt weird to type...we're living in the future-ture-ture). Among the others, I weirdly feel the best about Kluber? The fact that Snell is dealing with an elbow and Severino has been fighting lat/shoulder stuff scares the bejesus out of me. Folty isn't in the same class, at least on talent, as the others, so he's a distant fourth, regardless of health.
Vic (Baltimore): After drafting Miguel Andujar in 2018, I was expecting more of the same for the 3 additional years I was allowed to keep him. Well, can I expect a repeat of 2018 next year?
Jon Hegglund: Assuming his recovery is full, yeah, I think Andujar pretty much emerged fully formed in 2018. He *has* missed out on the hyperball this year, so the HR could end up in the 30s--but I would expect him to be the same hitter. Whether he can get the job back from Gio Urshela is another question...
Aaaaand Keston Hiura just hurt himself. Why do I love this game again?
Vic (Baltimore): Mitch Keller is doing much better than his 9 ERA and 2 WHIP, right? He'll have value in 2020 and 2021 around pick 200 in 15 team mixer?
Jon Hegglund: Yes, I agree with your premise--he's better than that. As far as draft positionl, let's see what pitchers went around 200 in 15-team leagues this year...we're looking at the Joe Musgroves, Rich Hills, and Jose Quintanas of the world. Sure, that's about the right time to go upside with your starters.
Pete (Rhode Island): How would you rank these pitching prospects in a dynasty league: Albert Abreu, Trevor Rogers, Patrick Weigel, Joey Wentz? I'm having trouble weighing reliever risk against upside.
Jon Hegglund: Ah, a prospect question! Keeping in mind that I'm Not a Prospect Guy, I would say that Abreu excites me the most out of this quartet, but I would be shocked if he doesn't end up in the pen. Rogers and Wentz could be decentish, while Weigel is already pitching out of the pen in AAA.
Mason (Kansas): I have two spots on the end of my bench to stash roto keepers for 2020. Who do you like out of Clint Frazier, Mike Tauchman, Trent Grisham, Seth Brown, and Sheldon Neuse?
Jon Hegglund: Well, first of all I'm going to fade the A's a little bit--their collective AAA numbers in Vegas this year are insane. I think I have to go Tauchman, Grisham, and then Frazier. Frazier would be first but I don't know that Tauchman hasn't passed him in the Yankees OF pecking order. Dude just rakes. You could use the other spot on Frazier to hedge that lineup spot, which is probably what I'd do. I like Grisham, but there's still plenty of uncertainty there.
Yuri (Israel): Hey Jon, very excited to see that you're chatting today. I was worried that maybe it was Craig's turn. Anyway, in a dynasty league, would you rather have Lindor or Tatis?
Jon Hegglund: Wow, Yuri coming hard with the Craig shade. I mean, I guess he brings it upon himself, but still... I'd still rather have Lindor. I get the five-year difference and the impossibility of not having heart-eye emojis at Tatis. But I think there might be more bumps in the road for Tatito, and Lindor is still only 25 and a fully-formed, top-5 fantasy asset. You can't go wrong either way. If you are in your competitive window right now, then the Lindor decision becomes even easier for me.
Keith H (Jericho, NY): In a redraft league where I’m in contention for the title, is there any reason to take up a bench spot with Tatis Jr since he’s merely “expected” to be shut down, but might still play? If he came back and played even just a week or two, it could be huge. But he’s taking up a valuable spot and “may” not play again. What would you do?
Jon Hegglund: There is absolutely no upside to bringing him back, and the Padres are not dumb. He won't be back. Use that spot.
cliffmayo (DC): Do you think Scooter Gennett will land somewhere, whether a minor league deal for the rest of this year or next year? How likely do you think it is that his poor performance this year was just the direct result of his groin injury? We know how leg injuries can sometimes prevent hitters from doing well, and he seemed like the real deal as a solid regular over the next couple of years (at least from the fantasy perspective).
In one of my leagues, I have him kept through the 2021 season.
Jon Hegglund: Yeah, I think you're onto something here. I don't think his career is over by any stretch, but I also don't see him coming back to his 2017-18 self, either. He'll get plenty of major-league ABs next year for somebody, I'm sure.
Festivus (Phoenix): Thanks for the chat. I have some SP about to be activated as the Fantasy playoffs start so I may need to drop a SP or two in my 20 team H2H league with QS and K/9. Who would you drop from this list: Michael Wacha, Mike Montgomery, Adrian Houser, Steven Brault, Michael Pineda, Steven Matz?
Jon Hegglund: You are welcome for the chat. Wacha and Monty are the names that stand out here. Montgomery has a sweet two-start schedule next week (DET, @MIA) so I'd probably cut Wacha first. He hasn't gone into the sixth inning in, like, forever (or, since June 28, to be exact).
Mike Trout (Anaheim, CA): Jon, this isn’t really Mike Trout. I often get frustrated with the Los Angeles of Anaheim largely because they have arguably one of the greatest positional players in history on their team in Mike Trout and they’re just never that good. Who in their minor league system is there to get excited about?
Jon Hegglund: Well, there's this Jo Adell kid, who I'm told is pretty good.
But aside from him, ehhhhhhh maybe Brandon Marsh? Toolsy OF, pretty close to being ready. Don't know a ton about the low minors, and since the planet will be a sizzling husk by the time those guys become relevant, I'm not sure it matters. Carpe diem!
Sam (TX): Hi Jon, what are your thoughts about David Price coming off the DL this weekend? Can he be anything in September?
Jon Hegglund: Sure, and you're probably in a position where you have to use him. But if (more likely, when) the Sox fall out of WC contention, a shutdown wouldn't surprise me.
Buddy (Peoria, IL): When will this Aquino nonsense stop?
Jon Hegglund: In 2025, someone will say to you, "Remember that kid who came up with the Reds in 2019 and hit the crap out of the ball for a couple of months?" And you will say, "Yeah! Oh shit, what was his name? Started with an 'A'..." And then you'll forget about it (because neither of you are near a phone or internet connection to Google it, let's say).
Three nights later, you awaken, sit bolt upright in bed, and mumble, "Aristides Aquino. Ha." Then, you fall immediately back to sleep and wake up the next morning, remembering nothing, but feeling the most rested you've felt in months, possibly years.
Matt (Boston): Small Sample Size, but is Lane Thomas interesting? He has fantastic exit velocity at 91.7mph and 98th percentile sprint speed according to Statcast. Can he be a 20HR/15SB guy?
Jon Hegglund: Not with a broken wrist, he can't.
But to the larger point your question implies: these non-prospect types seem to be coming out of the woodwork more and more, and the Cardinals are one of the franchises that know how to find a use for these guys. So, yeah, on principle, I'd pay attention (though wouldn't expect much).
The Fonz (Milwaukee): Chase Andesron sucks. Ayyyyyyyy!
Jon Hegglund: Exactamundo! It's like his name is an instruction to opposing lineups.
roxfan12 (ChiTown): Is there reason to be optimistic about Luis Campusano, or does he fall in to the 'be very weary of young catchers' syndrome?
Jon Hegglund: He's a 20 year-old catcher hitting slashing .325/.396/.512 at High-A. Sure, be excited.
But be wary of all catching prospects, because most of them will eventually make you weary.
Gila Monster (MA): Any chance Ryan McMahon can learn to elevate the ball and turn into a Max Muncy type? He absolutely kills the ball when he makes contact...right into the ground.
Jon Hegglund: I would assume there's a chance, and I would equally assume that someone(s) in the Rockies organization has talked with him about this. (Although, Rockies, so...) But I'm skeptical that years of hitting a certain way can easily be transformed overnight, and we only hear about the success stories. So I'd be patient with McMahon--he's a good hitter regardless.
Buddy (Peoria, IL): With all the extreme launch angle swinging, I'm wondering if there is any info out there regarding the height of pitches most commonly hit out of the park. Seems like nine out of ten bombs I see this year are on pitches knee high or lower, which once upon a time was thought of as good location for a pitch.
Jon Hegglund: Sure, and this seems to be the main reason why the once-celebrated sinker is now the persona non grata of pitches.
Matt (Boston): Who are you higher on and lower on than the industry for 2020?
For example, I'll be avoiding Vlad Jr and Bregman while I probably own all the shares of Machado.
Jon Hegglund: I still think Juan Soto will be underrated. And I'll probably be avoiding Scherzer and Verlander where they're likely to go.
Jon Hegglund: OK, this was fun. Wishing you all a pleasant holiday weekend and successful stretch run of the season. Bye now!