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Fantasy Baseball Sleeper: George Springer

Astros Manager Bo Porter
Astros Manager Bo Porter

Jul 13, 2013; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Houston Astros manager Bo Porter (16) against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

As keeper league and dynasty players already know, baseball’s 37th top prospect George Springer is the real deal and a future star for years to come. Certainly, next season, Springer will be a must-own everywhere but what about this season? With the fantasy playoffs right around the corner, a George Springer September call-up could be a huge late-season acquisition for your fantasy roster.

The question is when can we expect to see Springer. If he was a Marlin, he would’ve likely been up in May. The Astros, on the other hand, are taking a more cautious approach with their future star and keeping him in Triple-A until the end of the minor league playoffs. That means it’s very likely that Springer could arrive in the Bigs immediately after, giving fantasy baseball players several weeks of critical fantasy playoff production.

So what can we expect from Springer? Hopefully, the same dominance we’ve seen over the last two years of his meteoric rise through the Astros farm system.

Springer played his first full season last year, splitting time between High-A and Double-A. He played a combined 128 games, putting up an impressive .302/.383/.526 line with 24 HR, 55 XBH, 87 RBI, 109 R, and 32 SB.

He began this year in Double-A and soon shot up to Triple-A where he hasn’t slowed down. He’s played a combined 124 games thus far, putting up an even more impressive .302/.410/611 line with 36 HR, 65 XBH, 102 RBI, 100 R, and 39 SB. He has a good chance of becoming the first modern minor league player to join the 40-40 club.

This is nothing new, Springer was destined for success as a teenager at the University of Connecticut where he was the top Big East player for two consecutive years. As a freshman, Springer put up 16 HR, 33 XBH, and 57 RBI over 56 games. The following season, he posted 18 HR, 38 XBH, 62 RBI, and 33 SB over 64 games. His final season at UConn, Springer only hit 12 HR but put up a career-high 77 RBI, 37 XBH, and 31 SB.

Since then, he’s put up one of the most impressive minor league careers in just two seasons. Just take a look at how Springer’s production compares with members of the Major League 30-30 club:

 Minor League Totals

Player

G

BA

OPS

HR

XBH

RBI

R

SB

George Springer

259

.298

.952

60

123

190

216

75

Ryan Braun

198

.313

.948

42

109

144

131

34

Mike Trout

286

.342

.941

23

104

134

239

108

Matt Kemp

416

.313

.883

62

190

282

277

70

Springer is clearly going to be a star but it’s important not to discount his potential this season. Consider some of the lesser-hyped late-season call-ups last year.

Fellow Astros prospect Matt Dominguez came up on August 30 and put up a .287 BA, five home runs, 16 RBI, and 14 R for keen fantasy owners in the final month of the season. Rockies infielder Jordan Pacheco came up on September 6 and added two homers, 14 RBI, and 24 R in just four weeks. Manny Machado was called up earlier, in the second week of August, and put up seven home runs, 18 XBH, 26 RBI, 24 R, and two steals.

Assuming Springer is called up right after the Triple-A playoffs, we should see him make an immediate impact and provide a much-needed boost to your fantasy production during crunch time.

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