As the great philosopher known as the Birdman once said “You know The Stash List, it don’t need no introduction and ………..”
However, if you are new to The Stash List, please check out the intro that Bret includes in his first list of the year to familiarize yourself with the types of players eligible for inclusion.
On to the list:
The Graduates: (6) Danny Duffy, (9) Andrew Heaney, (16) Matt Wisler, (23) Ivan Nova
Wisler (and his long neck) made a magnificent major-league debut last Friday, working eight innings against the Mets, giving up six hits, striking out two, and walking none to notch his first win. He looks to have earned at least a few more turns in the Braves rotation, but as was detailed in last week’s Stash List, he faces competition from other options currently at Triple-A in Mike Foltynewicz, Manny Banuelos, Cody Martin, and possibly from whichever other pitching prospects the Braves steal from the Diamondbacks this week.
A last-minute call-up Wednesday afternoon when the Angels decided “to give Matt Shoemaker a few more days,” Heaney made his sixth major-league start (first as an Angel) against the Astros and gave up four hits over six innings, striking out five while giving up zero extra-base hits to people not named Carlos Correa. With the Angels in danger of falling below .500 and moving closer to fourth-place Seattle than first-place Houston, it remains to be seen how much more patient they will be with Shoemaker and his 5.03 DRA.
The Royals and Yankees each saw a rotation member return to the mound from injury on Wednesday. Down two starters (Yordano Ventura and Jason Vargas), the Royals welcomed Duffy back from the biceps tendinitis that sidelined him for over a month, and Nova rejoined the Yankees from his Tommy John surgery that kept him off a big-league mound for 14 months.
The Dropouts: A.J. Griffin (HM), (24) Jose Peraza
Griffin hit the minor league DL Sunday with a sore shoulder, his second shoulder setback since coming back from Tommy John surgery.
Peraza, who’s been playing second base primarily this season and has also seen time in center field recently, falls off the list because of the continued good performances by Cameron Maybin and Jace Peterson ahead of him at the big-league level. Peraza’s .704 OPS at Triple-A Gwinnett isn’t forcing the issue, and with the Braves hanging around the .500 mark, it’s hard to see how they turn to Peraza at this point unless a major injury occurs at one of those positions.
1) Matt Moore, LHP, Tampa Bay Rays (Last week: 10)
Moore did his best to convince Rays management that he was ready to rejoin the rotation after his start at Triple-A Durham on Sunday. He went 5 1/3 innings, giving up seven hits and three earned runs, striking out seven, and (more importantly) walking zero. But his bid to earn an immediate activation was not successful, and he will make his final rehab start Friday at Columbus. Moore should jump back into the Rays rotation next week against Cleveland and make his first major-league start in 15 months. The former Fighting Pinto has looked good in his four starts while rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, walking only five batters (three of which came in his first start) and striking out 16 in 16 1/3 innings. Moore has been a noted WHIP killer to this point in his career, but there are few pitchers who can match his overall upside and will be available on the waiver wire the rest of the season.
2) Steven Matz, LHP, New York Mets (Last week: 2)
Matz pitched five innings in his most recent Pacific Coast League start on Tuesday, giving up two earned runs on five hits and striking out eight. The whispers are getting louder for the struggling Mets to “do something," and even though the rotation hasn’t been the problem in Queens, that something will likely involve Matz—and soon.
3) Patrick Corbin, LHP, Arizona Diamondbacks (Last week: 3)
Corbin will make two more rehab starts before returning to the majors, and he’s looked progressively better in each start in the minors, throwing 79 pitches over 5 2/3 innings in his last start on June 20, giving up two earned runs and striking out three. It’s looking like an early-July return is still the plan, and Corbin will likely take Allen Webster’s spot in the rotation when he’s ready.
4) Hector Olivera, 2B/3B, Los Angeles Dodgers (Last week: 1)
Olivera was placed on the seven-day minor league DL (retroactive to Sunday) with a hamstring injury that will likely keep him out of action for a few weeks. Olivera has hit .358/.393/.528 with two home runs in 13 games in his two minor-league stops, and this looks like a minor setback, but it will cost Olivera valuable at-bats in the meantime.
5) Kyle Schwarber, C/LF, Chicago Cubs (Last week: NR)
Schwarber raked in his first taste of the majors, hitting .364/.391/.591 in six games of interleague play, slugging his first home run, and driving in six runs while serving as the Cubs designated hitter. Schwarber was sent to Triple-A Iowa on Sunday (as expected), but not before he established himself as the top Cubs minor-league option should the need for a bat arise at the big-league level. Theo Epstein said that with Schwarber now at Triple-A, he is viewed as being "an injury away" from helping in the majors. Roughly translated, Epstein’s comments mean “wait by the phone until Chris Coghlan gets hurt.”
6) Rusney Castillo, OF, Boston Red Sox (Last week: NR)
Castillo’s 77 plate appearances this season certainly were nothing like the 40 that he had in September of last year, as evidenced by his .230/.260/.284 line that included only two extra-base hits. Castillo wasn’t playing regularly in Boston (starting once over his last week in the majors), so he was shipped to Triple-A Pawtucket, where he’ll try to get back in the groove that he was in at the beginning of the season. Castillo will likely have to show production over an extended amount of time before he is recalled, so it’s advisable to not expect him back right away, or at least until Hanley Ramirez’s next strained hamstring occurs.
7) Arismendy Alcantara, OF/2B, Chicago Cubs (Last week: 4)
8) Kevin Gausman, RHP, Baltimore Orioles (Last week: 5)
“It angries up the blood” is what the great Satchel Paige once said about eating fried food, but it may as well serve to describe how every Kevin Gausman owner feels after watching him make a successful start at the big-league level (as he did on Sunday, giving up two runs in five innings at Toronto) and then seeing him promptly demoted to the minors hours later. If the Orioles actually intend to keep Gausman stretched out as a starter at the Triple-A level, it will almost certainly be better for his long-term development than yo-yoing him between the rotation and the bullpen at the big-league level. Hopefully the Orioles will stick to this version of their “Gausman Plan,” rather than making him into a middle reliever in the Baltimore bullpen.
9) Jon Singleton, 1B, Houston Astros (Last week: 7)
After posting a 1.001 OPS with 10 home runs and winning the prestigious Player of the Month Award for the Pacific Coast League in May, Singleton’s power has evaporated in June; he’s slugging just .392 with only one homer over 20 games this month. Singleton is not exactly beating down the door to join the recently promoted Carlos Correa as a part of the first-place Houston infield.
10) Daniel Norris, LHP, Toronto Blue Jays (Last week: 8)
11) Corey Seager, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers (Last week: 11)
Jimmy Rollins’ OPS by month this season: April .603, May .602, June .592.
Does this look like things are headed in the right direction to you?
12) Javier Baez, INF, Chicago Cubs (Last week: 12)
According to the source where I personally go to get all of my news—Baez’s Instagram account—he has gone to Arizona to begin rehab on his injured finger, which was injured two weeks ago and was reportedly set to keep him out 4-8 weeks. As Javy always says, #longprocess.
13) Roberto Osuna, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays (Last week: HM)
14) Steve Delabar, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays (Last week: NR)
John Gibbons announced Tuesday that Brett Cecil would be "backed off" from the closer role, opening the door for everybody’s favorite closer-by-committee arrangement. Of the participants, Osuna has the best stuff (and has been the Jays best reliever to date), but he may be needed before the ninth inning, opening the door for Delabar, who was in Triple-A at the beginning of May, to assume the ninth-inning duties. Reportedly, somebody named Bo Schultz may factor in the later innings as well, so despite the 29-year-old having less than 20 big-league innings under his belt, this may end up being a hot-hand situation in Toronto. Delabar has the longest track record (by far) of the three at the major-league level, so Gibbons may find comfort in giving the Proven Veteran the job.
15) Oswaldo Arcia, OF, Minnesota Twins (Last week: 13)
16) Brandon Beachy, RHP, Los Angeles Dodgers (Last week: 14)
Beachy made his second rehab start at Triple-A Oklahoma City on Sunday, throwing 45 pitches, striking out three, and issuing one walk in two innings of work. He will continue to ramp up his rehab with the intention of adding an inning in each start in an effort to prove his health to the Dodgers before the trade deadline.
17) Martin Perez, LHP, Texas Rangers (Last week: 17)
After a minor groin injury delayed his second rehab start until Monday, Perez struck out four batters in three innings at Double-A Frisco, walking one and giving two hits, one of which was a solo home run that accounted for his only run allowed. Perez will likely make three more rehab starts before he is considered to join the Rangers rotation, which could look different by the time he is ready to return.
18) Manny Banuelos, LHP, Atlanta Braves (Last week: 15)
Banuelos pitched the best game of his life on Monday, a complete game gem, striking out five and allowing two hits along the way. Most importantly for him, he didn’t issue a single walk, and that helped him to lower his ERA to 2.03. Banuelos remains a strong candidate to join the Braves rotation if Wisler is unable to pitch deep into ballgames and protect the abysmal Braves bullpen.
19) Aaron Nola, RHP, Philadelphia Phillies (Last week: 18)
Nola pitched five scoreless innings and struck out seven in his first Triple-A start on June 18th, lowering his ERA to 1.76 on the year. A trade of Cole Hamels or Aaron Harang could pave the way for Nola to join the rotation in Philly, but they may keep him buried at Triple-A until September for service-time considerations.
20) Stephen Piscotty, OF, St. Louis Cardinals (Last week: 19)
Piscotty has made his last six starts in left field (his only six of the season) at Triple-A Memphis. This development may be something to keep an eye on if Matt Holliday’s hamstring injury keeps him sidelined longer than expected.
21) Jose Berrios, P, Minnesota Twins (Last week: 20)
22) Miguel Sano, 1B/DH Minnesota Twins (Last week: 21)
23) Richie Shaffer, 1B/3B Tampa Bay Rays (Last week: 22)
Shaffer continues to mash at Triple-A Durham and now has nine home runs (with a 1.116 OPS) in 23 games at the level. James Loney is scheduled to swing a bat within a week, as he works his way back from his finger injury, but if he experiences a setback in his rehab, the Rays may turn to an internal solution in Shaffer to provide some much-needed offense at first base.
24) Rafael Soriano, RHP, Chicago Cubs (Last week: 25)
25) Nomar Mazara, OF, Texas Rangers (Last week: NR)
There are more than few scenarios that would have to play out for Mazara to see the big leagues this season, but with the 20-year-old hitting for power this month (seven HR in 22 games) at Double-A Frisco, it’s not impossible to envision that he might be able to help the Rangers later in the season should the need arise. Mazara has started eight of his last nine games in left field, marking his only LF experience as a pro, opening up the possibility that if Delino DeShields, Jr. and Josh Hamilton are unable to stay on the field, Mazara could be the beneficiary. The Rangers may also feel that Joey Gallo is not able to handle left field, and could choose to swap him out with Mazara. It’s all speculation to be sure, but the Rangers have shown that they aren’t afraid to challenge their prospects.
Honorable Mention: Kris Medlen, Jon Gray, Jose De Leon, Sean Nolin, Brandon Morrow, Joe Wieland, Nick Tropeano, Luis Severino, Aaron Blair, Mark Appel
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For the remainder of 2015, I'd take Olivera, Gallo and then Seager in that order, but I think you're correct in assuming that Gallo gets sent down when Hamilton comes back and his 2015 production may be tied to how well he plays the OF when he returns to the minors. 2016+ I would go in the opposite order.
People will say Will Smith or Jeremy Jeffress or someone in MIL, but don't forget K-Rod has another year on his contract.
Btw, Singleton's power may be back as he hit 2 HR last night vs. Sacramento. Like many sluggers, his homers tend to come in hot streaks.