Fantasy Baseball: Prospect Jordan Hicks Makes the Cardinals

Cardinals Jordan Hicks

In a surprising development pitching prospect Jordan Hicks will make the St. Louis Cardinals opening day roster. This news is shocking considering the highest level the prospect has seen in his two seasons in A+. He had started to gain traction as a prospect but even as recent as last year he was only the 13th best prospect per MLB.com in the Cardinals organization. Coming into 2018 season MLB.com moved him up to 7th in the organization.

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The 21 year old has some serious skills. He has been know to hit triple digits but is typically throws between 94-97. Hicks throws a power slurve and a change up to go along with his fastball.

The stuff is legit and helped him have a 10.67 K/9 in 27 innings in high A last season both starting and in relief. He began 201in A ball going 8-2 with 3.35 era in 78 innings. His K/9 in A ball was a fine enough 7.2.

ESPN’s Keith Law said of Hicks, “He’s very athletic and works around the strike zone, although the slight cutoff in his delivery makes it hard for him to work to his glove side. I think there’s big starter upside here, with a lot of work remaining.”

Chris Lee - St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Chris Lee – St. Louis Post-Dispatch

The question now becomes, can he help fantasy baseball owners in 2018? The short answer, maybe. He is jumping multiple levels but if the stuff plays you could have a serious value. The K rate would have to have to be closer to a strikeout per inning or become the closer in St. Louis or a perfect world of both.

Breaking camp the Cardinals bullpen was a mess. Luke Gregerson was expected to get the nod but will now begin the season on the 10-day DL. Dominic Leone seems to be the favorite as of now and fantasy owners have followed suit. In ESPN leagues Leone is up to 29.5% owned and a whopping 52% owned on Yahoo. Leone is likely the guy right now and seems like a good move for those trying to grab some early saves. That said Hicks could steal this job sooner than later.

This is not the first time St. Louis has brought up a top prospect to use in relief. Carlos Martinez, Adam Wainwright, and Alex Reyes have all seen time out of the bullpen at the major league level. Could Hicks be the next in line? Only time will tell. With the clubs history and the prospects potential, I think there is a non-zero chance it happens. I am adding him deep leagues and keeper/dynasty formats as of now. If you have an NA spot or flexibility with the back of your bench I don’t hate adding him. Pay attention to the Cardinals over the first couple weeks to see when he pitches and how often.

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