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Ten Potential Pop-Up Prospects

by Matthew Foreman
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

This list is of players who are often not top prospects – none are top 10 and only one is in the next group – but many could provide substantial fantasy value in 2015.  All will be available as fliers in late rounds of league drafts (in all but the deepest of keepers), and most should remain on the waiver wire until they are promoted.  Note, this article is meant to be read as a supplement to the articles on top prospects who will be up early in the season and the prospects who are in line for mid-season promotions


This list is in alphabetical order:

1. Matt Barnes, Right-Handed Pitcher, Boston Red Sox


Barnes has the size and stuff to be a solid #3 pitcher and everything seemed to click in August, making Barnes an attractive option should the Red Sox need another starter.


2. Christian Bethancourt, Catcher, Atlanta Braves


Bethancourt is currently the starting catcher in Atlanta but he is backed up by A.J. Pierzynski, and the Braves have John Buck and Eli Whiteside in the minor leagues as insurance. Bethancourt is a defense-first catcher with questionable fantasy value, but he is a better hitter than he gets credit for and is worth monitoring for a hot streak.


3. Adam Duvall, First Baseman/Third Baseman, San Francisco Giants


Duvall is blocked by Brandon Belt and Casey McGehee, but could see time if either is hurt or McGehee cannot recapture the magic from 2014.  Duvall has the power to hit 25 home runs if given a full season of playing time, but may struggle to hit .250 and is a poor defender at any position.


4. Kendall Graveman, Right-Handed Pitcher, Oakland A's


Graveman came over from Toronto in the Josh Donaldson/Brett Lawrie trade, and is the #5 starter in Oakland.  He should benefit from the large park and good defense in Oakland.


5. Alex Guerrero, Second Baseman/Shortstop, Los Angeles Dodgers


Guerrero should see time in LA if either Jimmy Rollins or Howie Kendrick are hurt.  He lacks the ability to be a shortstop for a long stretch, but is solid depth, and could hit .270 with 15 home runs if given full-time at-bats.


6. Nick Kingham, Right-Handed Pitcher, Pittsburgh Pirates


Kingham has the potential to be a solid mid-rotation starter and should be promoted if the Pirates need a pitcher.  Brandon Cumpton is another option, but his struggles in 2014 should lead the Pirates to give Kingham the chance if more than one start is needed.


7. Mikie Mahtook, Outfielder, Tampa Bay Rays


Mahtook lacks any elite skills, but has the potential to hit .300 and can play all three outfield positions.  Currently blocked in Tampa Bay, but could see time in the event of any injury that requires a long-term replacement.


8. Jake Marisnick, Outfielder, Houston Astros


Marisnick no longer has rookie status, as he has spent 145 days in the major leagues, but he is currently slotted to be the starting left fielder in Houston and should do much better with consistent playing time.  A great defensive outfielder, he should be given 200-300 plate appearances to figure it out before any changes would be made.


9. Alex Meyer, Right-Handed Pitcher, Minnesota Twins


Meyer used a mid-to-upper-90s fastball and a power knuckle-curve to dominate AAA in 2014.  He should be the first promotion if the Twins need another starter.


10. Stephen Piscotty, Outfielder, St. Louis Cardinals


Piscotty has the talent to hit .280 while playing a solid right field, and could see time in the major leagues as a better-hitting option than Peter Bourjos or Randal Grichuk.

Matthew Foreman
Matthew Foreman is a baseball prospect writer for Rotoworld. He can also be found on Twitter.