Farm Report: Grandal gets the call

San Diego has reportedly called up switch-hitting catcher Yasmani Grandal from Triple-A Tucson, and we have to assume that the 23-year-old will get all the playing time he can handle. The Padres have two other catchers on the major league roster, Nick Hundley and John Baker, but neither player has produced at the plate this year. Hundley in particular has been a disaster, batting .169 over 142 at-bats, with an OPS of just .516.

Grandal arrived in San Diego via the Mat Latos deal (as did a majority of all living Padres), and he's had a respectable season at Tucson, hitting .317/.421/.500 with 10 doubles and four homers. Before you get too excited about that slash-line, note that half the hitters in the PCL seem to be batting .320 or better, with eight guys above .340.
But still, we're talking about a backstop who entered the season ranked among the best prospects in San Diego's system, and who placed No. 53 in Baseball America's preseason top-100. There's a lot to like with Grandal. His career minor league OBP is .405, so we can be reasonably certain he'll get himself on base at a decent clip for the Pads. The obvious problem is his new home park, Petco. While Grandal has demonstrated modest pop in the minors, he'll now do his hitting in an unfriendly power environment, for a team that ranks next-to-last in the NL in run-scoring.
Considering his profile and his surroundings, it's tough to recommend him to the mixed league 5x5 crowd. If you're adding him, let's hope it's a deep format. So, um ... maybe we should have led this week's Farm Report with a different dude.
Like Seattle's Stephen Pryor, for example. The M's are bringing him up from Tacoma to assist their battered bullpen. The hard-throwing Pryor immediately becomes a reliever of interest, given the team's late inning struggles. Pryor has pitched 28.0 innings across two levels so far this season, striking out 39 batters, walking 12, allowing only two earned runs and earning nine saves. The former fifth-rounder has mid-to-high 90s velocity and profiles as a potential closer. He's definitely an add in AL-only leagues, and worth a flier in any deep, competitive format if you're chasing saves.
And here's another kid who just got the call: Alex Castellanos joined the Dodgers on Thursday, after Matt Kemp (hamstring) hit the DL. The 25-year-old has hit a ridiculous .379/.476/.759 over 22 games at Triple-A Albuquerque, with five home runs and nine stolen bases. He hit .320 at Double-A last season, swiping 14 bags and clearing the fence 23 times. Keep him on the radar. This year, he's played primarily at second base, though he's also made appearances in left field and right. Over five minor league seasons, he's actually spent time at every defensive position except catcher. So he's versatile, if nothing else.
Anthony Rizzo has been sidelined for a few days with wrist soreness, but the injury isn't considered particularly serious. He's day-to-day. No obvious reason to panic. For the time being, Rizzo is stuck on 17 home runs with a .354/.415/.713 slash.
Yankees catching prospect Gary Sanchez hit a pair of homers for Single-A Charleston on Thursday, giving him five bombs over his last seven games. He's driven in 18 runs during that stretch, and is now hitting .295/.345/.503 for the year. Not too shabby. The 19-year-old Sanchez hit 17 bombs in just 82 games last season at the same level, so power doesn't seem to be a worry here.
Arizona LHP Tyler Skaggs is looking to extend his streak of 12 scoreless frames on Friday against Double-A Jacksonville. For the year, the 20-year-old Skaggs is 3-3 with a 2.72 ERA and 52 Ks in 46.1 innings. Trevor Bauer is ahead of Skaggs in the sprint to the Diamondbacks' rotation, but both have impressed.

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