Tue. Jun 28th, 2022
Fantasy Baseball: Which of Riley Greene, Oneil Cruz, Alex Kirilloff and C.J. Abrams is the priority pickup?

What a weekend for call-ups.

I suppose we had it coming, what with the projected Super Two cutoff and all. Then once more, three of the 4 call-ups price highlighting right here had already seen time within the majors. Should that dampen our enthusiasm for them? Is Riley Greene mechanically the popular pickup in Fantasy just because we’ve got but to see him fail? By most lists, he is the highest-ranked prospect of the 4.

Of course, Alex Kirilloff is not ranked in any respect. He’s not eligible to be, having already gotten 244 at-bats within the majors between this 12 months and final. He’s certain to ask essentially the most skepticism for exactly that cause, although extenuating circumstances have factored into his previous failures. More on that in a bit.

There’s additionally C.J. Abrams, who hasn’t truly arrived but however is reportedly on his manner. The 21-year-old appeared overmatched in 55 at-bats earlier this 12 months however had gotten sizzling at Triple-A. Last however not least is Oneil Cruz, the toolsy shortstop whose impending promotion Monday has been a very very long time coming.

We truly noticed Cruz for 9 at-bats on the finish of final 12 months. That’s all he wanted to set a Pirates report for the hardest-hit ball within the Statcast period. Standing an Aaron Judge-like 6-feet-7, Cruz additionally produces Judge-like exit velocities. According to Baseball America, he averaged 94 mph on batted balls final 12 months. No different high 100 prospect averaged greater than 91.

He can even run a bit. Project his numbers within the higher minors final 12 months over 150 video games, and he finally ends up with 37 homers and 41 steals.

Cruz was arguably essentially the most hyped prospect of spring coaching, seemingly positioning himself for a gap day job, so when he received despatched down, it figured to be for simply a few weeks. A depressing begin to the Triple-A season put that concept to relaxation, however he is come round since about mid-May, batting .299 (29 for 97) with seven homers, three steals, a .953 OPS and a wonderfully manageable 17.5 % strikeout fee in his previous 26 video games. Those are the sorts of numbers Cruz ought to have been placing up all alongside, however clearly, the Pirates view it as extra consultant of his readiness than his full-season line, which stays lackluster.


Suffice it to say CBS Sports customers have maintained their rosy outlook as nicely. Cruz’s roster fee by no means dipped beneath 55 %. It’s solely as much as 64 % now, which suggests you should still have a shot at him. His monumental ceiling makes him the highest-priority pickup of the 4 though he could have a decrease flooring than somebody like Greene.

Unlike Cruz, Greene did truly win a job in spring coaching, however then a fractured foot preempted his debut. A protracted rehabilitation adopted, and solely Saturday did he make his debut. Already he appears up to date, having walked twice in every of his first two video games.


His polish as a hitter is what stands out most, at the least offensively, although he isn’t missing in energy and will even chip in some stolen bases. Of the 4 notable call-ups this weekend, his expertise comes the simplest, making him a comparatively secure pickup as prospect call-ups go and my second selection behind solely Cruz.

I might advise you to not sleep on Kirilloff, although. His expertise as a hitter has been evident from the time he batted .348 with a .970 OPS as a 20-year-old in A-ball. That’s A-ball, you say? A very long time in the past, true, however do you keep in mind how his rookie season started final 12 months? Insane batted-ball knowledge, however a number of unhealthy luck. Then got here a four-game stretch by which he homered 4 occasions and doubled twice, after which got here the wrist harm.

He wasn’t the identical thereafter — not statistically and, extra to the purpose, not bodily. He ultimately conceded to surgical procedure, however the wrist nonetheless wasn’t feeling proper at the beginning of this 12 months, prompting a cortisone shot and a demotion to Triple-A. There, he was tasked with overcoming the ache in his wrist and correcting the issues in his swing brought on by it. It took him a few weeks to come back round, however judging from these numbers, mission achieved:


That’s the most effective we have ever seen him within the minors, with some added persistence on the plate. It does not seem to be the wrist is a matter anymore, and we have hardly gotten to see him play when that is been the case. Imagine he is a first-time call-up who was placing up these sorts of numbers at Triple-A after which prioritizing him simply after Cruz and Greene on the waiver wire.

Last up is Abrams, a shock choice for the opening day roster with Fernando Tatis sidelined by a fractured wrist. At the time, he had performed simply 42 video games at Double-A and was clearly pressed into big-league responsibility. His enjoying time rapidly diminished, and it got here as no shock when he received despatched again down in mid-May.

We do not know the complete story behind his return but — it might should do with Manny Machado spraining his ankle Sunday — however suffice it to say Abrams is extra ready this time round, having seemingly mastered Triple-A.


Of specific observe are his previous 19 video games, throughout which he has hit .398 (35 for 88) with 4 house runs, seven stolen bases and a 1.033 OPS. His small construct could preclude him from hitting for a lot energy on the highest stage (at the least at age 21), however the hit and pace instruments are each close to the highest of the dimensions. In reality, it is tempting to maneuver him up the precedence checklist in case your best want is stolen bases, however of the 4 call-ups, he has essentially the most to show and essentially the most questions concerning his enjoying time.

So there you could have it. If you are questioning how one can prioritize these 4 off the waiver wire, my suggestion is that this:

  1. Oneil Cruz
  2. Riley Greene
  3. Alex Kirilloff
  4. C.J. Abrams

Of course, realistically, you will wish to get your arms on nonetheless many you’ll be able to. Each represents a ticket for a lottery nicely price enjoying, and given the progress we have seen from them in current weeks, your possibilities of cashing in appear larger than standard.

– Officialshop.hyperlink Editorial Team –

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