Tuesday, June 2, 2009

First to Third: The Next Next Big Thing

First, Tampa Bay pitcher David Price was the next big thing. All he did was pitch very well toward the end of the season in 2008, providing fans with a taste of what's to come. Then, last Friday super catching prospect Matt Wieters made his MLB debut. So who's next?

Tommy Hanson - This Braves pitcher likely won't see the majors until after the All-Star break, but in 66 innings this year at AAA, he has 90 strikeouts and only 17 walks while surrendering a paltry 11 earned runs. He'll be the first guy on this list to see the show.

Neftali Feliz - Only 21 years old, the Rangers prospect posted an ERA of 2.98 in 10 starts in AA last season and began 2009 in AAA. Feliz has managed a strikeout per inning so far, but his ERA is over 4.00. Once that starts coming down, Feliz will be up to help the Texas pitching staff.

Buster Posey - A catcher with some power who should take over as starter sometime next year in San Francisco, Posey is hitting .299 in high A ball so far in 2009. I'd be shocked if he didn't get the Evan Longoria treatment (starting the season in AAA before being called up to slow his service clock) in 2010, but he'll be a household name in no time.

Both Hanson and Feliz are available in Yahoo leagues, so if you have an extra roster spot (or are ready to dump Oliver Perez or another struggling pitcher) give them consideration. If you're in a keeper league, make sure you snatch up these guys before it's too late.

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