MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances in the Minors from the previous seven days. Any player on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible.
Counting this week’s edition, there have been four Prospect Teams of the Week in 2019. Astros outfielder Yordan Alvarez has now appeared on three of them. The 21-year-old continues to hit for average and power, starting this past week by going 6-for-8 with six RBIs in a doubleheader on Wednesday. He hit .591 for the week to bring his average up over .400 for the season.
He has company this week from his teammate in Round Rock as Kyle Tucker looks like he’s climbing out of his early-season hole. He joins Alvarez in the PTOW outfield after hitting .444 and slugging 1.000 for the week, giving Houston a pair of outfielders on the team in each of the past two weeks.
Here is this week’s PTOW, based on games from April 29-May 5.
C: Josh Breaux, Charleston RiverDogs (Class A)
(Yankees No. 15 prospect)
4 G, .500/.556/1.313, 5 R, 1 2B, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 1 BB, 2 SO
The Yankees’ second-round pick from the 2018 Draft is certainly making himself comfortable during his full-season debut in the South Atlantic League. He now has an eight-game hitting streak going after hitting in all four games he played in this past week, starting things off with a two-homer performance on Tuesday, then homering again on Friday and Saturday. He’s now fourth in the SAL with 24 RBIs, tied for fifth with six homers and ninth in slugging (.560).
1B: Jared Walsh, Salt Lake Bees (Triple-A)
(Angels No. 20 prospect)
7 G, .444/.516/.852, 7 R, 5 2B, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 4 BB, 7 SO
The second straight Angels first baseman to make the PTOW (Matt Thaiss), Walsh did so with five two-hit games. He hit homers in back-to-back contests on Friday and Saturday, driving in three runs in each game. Walsh now has eight homers and 22 RBIs for the year to go along with his .969 OPS. The two-way player also picked up a run in relief (though he allowed a run) on Monday.
2B: Keston Hiura, San Antonio Missions (Triple-A)
(Brewers No. 1 prospect/MLB No. 19 prospect)
7 G, .350/.435/.900, 4 R, 2 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 5 SO, 1 SB
The game’s top second base prospect started his week 0-for-6 in his first two games, but went 7-for-14 the rest of the way. That included two three-hit games on Friday and Saturday, the second of which was a two-homer, four-RBI performance. Hiura is now tied for fourth in home runs (10) and is fifth in the Pacific Coast League with his 1.150 OPS.
3B: Austin Riley, Gwinnett Stripers (Triple-A)
(Braves No. 5 prospect/MLB No. 35 prospect)
6 G, .478/.538/1.261, 10 R, 3 2B, 5 HR, 11 RBI, 3 BB, 5 SO
Riley lands on the squad for the second week in a row after a pair of two-homer games, on Wednesday and Saturday. He drove in nine of his 11 runs for the week on Friday and Saturday and how has a .301/.368/.646 line for the year. He’s now second in the International League in homers (10) and RBIs (27) and is fifth in SLG (.646).
SS: Jazz Chisholm, Jackson Generals (Double-A)
(D-backs No. 1 prospect/MLB No. 57 prospect)
6 G, .300/.417/.900, 5 R, 4 HR, 6 RBI, 2 BB, 9 SO, 1 SB
The Bahamian shortstop got off to a very slow start in his Double-A debut in 2019 (.151/.295/.411 in April), but might be showing signs of getting back on track. He went 5-for-12 over the final three games of the week and four of those five hits were home runs. The outburst allowed him to vault into the Southern League lead with nine homers this season.
OF: Yordan Alvarez, Round Rock Express (Triple-A)
(Astros No. 3 prospect/MLB No. 41 prospect)
6 G, .650/.708/1.000, 9 R, 4 2B, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 5 BB, 4 SO
Alvarez is now hitting an obscene .402/.496/.876 for the year with a 1.372 OPS. He leads the Pacific Coast League in RBIs (37), is tied for the lead in homers (12) and is second in average and OPS.
OF: Kyle Tucker, Round Rock Express (Triple-A)
(Astros No. 2 prospect/MLB No. 7 prospect)
5 G, .444/.474/1.000, 6 R, 1 2B, 3 HR, 8 RBI, 1 BB, 3 SO, 1 SB
Tucker did most of his damage on Thursday and Saturday, going 7-for-10 in those two games. He homered in three straight contests, starting on Thursday, and drove in six that day, while picking up four hits on Saturday. After hitting .173 in April, he’s raised his batting average nearly 50 points and already has as many RBIs (9) in May as he did for all of the first month of the season. This marks the seventh time Tucker has been named to the Team of the Week, tied for the most appearances of of any player since the inception of the team in 2015.
OF: Dom Thompson-Williams, Arkansas Travelers (Double-A)
(Mariners No. 15 prospect)
6 G, .522/.593/.870, 5 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 4 BB, 5 SO, 1 SB
Thompson-Williams, who came to the Mariners via the James Paxton trade, picked up hits in all six games he played this past week, four of them being of the multi-hit variety. He homered on Saturday and Sunday to close out the week and has raised his season line to .316/.404/.520 in his Double-A debut.
LHP: MacKenzie Gore, Lake Elsinore Storm (Class A Adv)
(Padres No. 2 prospect/MLB No. 14 prospect)
1-0, 0.96 ERA, 2 GS, 9 1/3 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 18 SO, 0.64 WHIP
Gore continued to dominate the California League in making his second PTOW squad of the season. He struck out 11 in 4 1/3 IP on Monday, then followed that up with five hitless innings and seven more K’s in Lancaster, one of the best hitting parks in the Minor Leagues. Gore obviously leads the league in ERA (1.15) and WHIP (0.67) while carrying a gaudy 13 K/9 ratio (and 9.5 K/BB).
RHP: Casey Mize, Erie SeaWolves (Double-A)
(Tigers No. 1 prospect/MLB No. 16 prospect)
2-0, 0.00 ERA, 2 GS, 14 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 11 SO, 0.21 WHIP
All the No. 1 pick in the 2018 Draft did in his Double-A debut on Monday is pitch a no-hitter, walking one and striking out seven over those nine innings. He gave up an unearned run on Sunday (and two hits) over five frames in his second start of the week and the right-hander hasn’t allowed an earned run since April 9. That’s also the only earned run he’s allowed this season, leading to a 0.23 ERA, .071 batting average against and 0.28 WHIP for the year.
RP: Tanner Rainey, Fresno Grizzlies (Triple-A)
(Nationals No. 18 prospect)
0-0, 1 SV, 0.00 ERA, 3 G, 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 SO, 0.33 WHIP
Rainey began his first season with the Nationals, after coming from the Reds in the Tanner Roark deal, roughly by giving up runs in his first three outings. He’s now put up zeroes in six of his last seven outings, including the three he appeared in this past week. He didn’t allow a hit all week, striking out the side on Tuesday and picking up his first save on Saturday.
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.