2016 Draft Kit

Minor league batters of the week: Rymer Liriano and Jakob Dalfonso

There are a lot of players in professional baseball organizations. Picking through the rosters can be a mind-numbing experience. Recognizing every name in pro ball is a war only few will be able to win.

A smart ninja puts himself in position to win key battles with any number of tactics. In this case, research at MiLB.com, particularly their batters of the week article from Tuesday, unearthed a few fantasy baseball gems.

Click the link for the full list, but we’re going to talk further about a couple of the players who are better future dynasty fantasy prospects than the rest: Rymer Liriano and Jakob Dalfonso.

The average age of players in AAA is 22, in AA it is 21 and in high-A it is 20. Players who are older and still playing in those leagues are less likely to ever make an impact.

I’m not saying they won’t arrive late, but the shine is starting to come off the word “prospect” when you talk about a player like Justin Maxwell (one of the AAA hitters of the week) who is 27 and still playing in AAA.

That’s why we’re going to discuss a couple raw talents who are starting to show their clubs potential.

Rymer Liriano, RF, Fort Wayne TinCaps (San Diego Padres)

Liriano, a speedster in the Padres organization, will be 19 until June 20. He’s raw and playing in Class-A advanced, but something clicked for him in the last week.

He was 9-for-18 with two doubles, two triples, a homer, five RBI, 6 runs and a whopping nine steals. He now has an absurd 20 steals in 2011, despite hitting .211, in two leagues.

Because he’s still playing A ball it could be a while before we see him, but if Liriano continues to smack extra-base hits and hit for average while piling up ridiculous thefts he’ll move up the ranks fast.

Jakob Dalfonso, DH, Rome Braves (Atlanta Braves)

Dalfonso is technically “old” for Advanced A ball, but if a player goes 11-for-23 (.478) with four homers, 10 RBI and nine runs in a week at any level of baseball as a 21-year-old, fantasy players are going to want to know about it.

There is not a lot of power history for Dalfonso, but he has seven homers (a career high) this season and at 48 games played is three away from eclipsing his career high. Let’s see what he can do with 100-120 games.

Like Liriano, Dalfonso is realistically a few levels away from a debut with the big club, but those of us in deep dynasty leagues need to keep our eyes peeled.

Just one more thing about this duo. Both Liriano and Dalfonso currently have very bad K/BB ratios. Their batting eyes must improve as they gain more experience and they should advance a couple levels in 2011 or their fantasy prospects become shaky.

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