MLB Week in Review (August 24-30)

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Rosters are only days away from expanding and yet there are a few very good prospects that won’t be finding their way to the MLB this year.

The September call-ups always bring a number of interesting prospects to the league where the teams can get a better look.

More often than not the teams struggling get to find out what they have in the farm system for the future.

There is one big cavoite though as teams with those key prospects have a serious decision to make.

On the one hand, these teams want to see these prospects who have done everything they can to prove that they belong in the majors.

They want to be able to get those prospects into games and really see what they have against the best of the best.

They also wouldn’t mind getting some of the jitters out for prospects who can sometimes struggle with the adjustment to the bigger league.

Doing that in September works well as they can play for a month and get over all of the things that they might have suffered earlier in the new season.

For teams focusing on the future, having that prospect start well next season can make a big difference for the team.

The problem for a lot of these teams though is that they also have to think about the long-term future of the franchise.

These blue-chip prospects are the guys that the team is about to be built around and calling them up in September is a challenge.

That is a result of the rules in baseball that limit the control that teams have over players coming up.

A player hasn’t officially been in the league a year until they have been on the team for at least 172 games.

That means that players who are called up in September can be considered to be on the team for a year.

As a result, teams lose an entire year of contract control for these players giving them six years under a rookie deal rather than seven.

In the long term that extra year is a big one as teams can build all they want but when a player enters free agency the original team might just not have the money to pay him.

They want that player for as long as they can possibly have him in the hopes that they can build something around him through seven years.

As of right now, two teams are coming up with that decision but plenty of people believe they have already made their decision.

The Toronto Blue Jays seem intent on sitting on Vladimir Guerrero Jr. who has lit up every level of baseball including Triple-A.

It has been pretty clear that the Jays are happy to slowly bring the #1 rated prospect through their system.baseball-sidebar

From the Jays that comes out as patience in letting Guerrero develop through the system rather than rushing through.

He has clearly shown that he has more than enough talent to be in the majors but the Jays have kept the progression slow and as September approaches they don’t seem interesting in bringing him on the team.

The Chicago White Sox have the same situation as Eloy Jimenez has been doing a lot of the same things as Guerrero and the White Sox are following the same approach.

They don’t seem willing to bring him up anytime soon and unlike Guerrero, he has not been very silent about his displeasure.

Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a lot of control over what happens as the teams can call up players as they see fit.

Neither player will likely be seen this year and fans might have to wait a little while until they see them next year.

It is all a matter of service time for these teams as they are within the rules doing the best thing for the future of their team.

That might not be the most fun or the best for the players but it is what they need to do to stay competitive.

It might not be that way for a while though as players are getting increasingly frustrated with this type of manipulation.

It will likely be something that they talked about more and more as prospects get the spotlight more than ever.

With more teams looking for that great player fans are watching guys come through the system and as they do they are noticing more and more what teams are doing.

With more outcry and more focus the way that they manipulate that service time could be coming to an end.

 

Extra Innings

Stanton Making Moves

Giancarlo Stanton hit his 300th home run this week and continued to solidify his place as one of the best power hitters in the game. What was more interesting about that home run is that Stanton became the fastest player to get to 300. If he keeps up the pace he could be entering rarified air and continue to move up the list. He has the ability to be one of the best power hitters of all time and with a lineup like he is a part of in New York he will get the opportunity.

Soured Relationship

The Toronto Blue Jays continue to make news for all of the wrong reasons and the latest centres around the waiver trade deadline. As they head to an offseason with a little of uncertainty they are looking to the waiver deadline to unload veterans and free up space for the future of this team. The biggest question has been Josh Donaldson as the former MVP is in a contract year and the Jays have his replacement so instead of letting him walk for nothing they have been trying to trade him. The problem has been that an injury has kept him out most of the year and that has sent his stock tumbling. Now with the final trade deadline looming patience seems to be wearing thin for both sides as the last few days have seen this relationship fall apart.

Astros Double Down

It was a painful rebuild for the Astros after a few 100-loss seasons were some of the worst in the MLB in years. Their strategy has worked out though and a big part of that strategy has been A.J. Hinch who helped to build this team into a true contender. After taking the World Series last year the Astros are fine with their path right now and they remain one of the strongest teams. He will be back for the near future as the Astros signed him to an extension hoping that his great touch can lead to more titles.

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