My top prospect to stash last week was Jackson Holliday, and lo, he's in the majors now. But seeing as my top to stash for this week is currently injured, there's no way I'm going 2 for 2 to begin the year, is there?

Or is there?

Turns out Junior Caminero is gearing up to return at the exact same time the Rays have a new injury in their infield.

Life, you devil, you've found a way again, haven't you?


(These are the prospects most worth stashing in redraft leagues.)

Junior Caminero, 3B, Rays

2023 minors: .324 BA (460 AB), 31 HR, .976 OPS, 42 BB, 100 K
2024 minors: 4 for 12, 1 HR, 1 SB, 2 BB, 3 K

OK, so Caminero likely won't go from taking batting practice and fielding grounders one day to batting cleanup at Tropicana Field the next, but if he's close to returning to the lineup at Triple-A, the move to the majors could be a quick one. We don't have a precise timetable for Brandon Lowe's strained oblique yet, but manager Kevin Cash has said "it's fair to assume he's going to miss some time."

The Rays thought Caminero was close to being a finished product even last year, calling him up for the stretch run and including him on the preseason roster. It was only a roster crunch that took the 20-year-old out of the running this spring, but now that Brandon Lowe is joining Joshua Lowe, Jonathan Aranda, Taylor Walls and Jonny DeLuca on the injured list, they may be running out of excuses to keep him down. It's possible they instead use Lowe's injury as an opportunity to get Curtis Mead regular at-bats at second base, but the bottom line is that the urgency to stash Caminero, who has the potential to be an impact bat right away, goes up with every injury.

Esteury Ruiz, OF, Athletics

2023 majors: .254 BA (449 AB), 5 HR, 67 SB, .654 OPS, 20 BB, 99 K
2024 minors: .286 BA (28 AB), 1 HR, 6 SB, .893 OPS, 5 BB, 6 K

Last week, I give this whole spiel about how, even though he's obviously one of the top minor-leaguers to stash, it would be inappropriate to feature Ruiz in the Prospects Report since he's not actually a prospect anymore. But then I featured Luis Matos and Quinn Priester, who technically aren't prospects either, so clearly there are no rules. Or better yet, I reserve the right to change the rules as often and as arbitrarily as I please, and this week, I see fit to include Ruiz.

Why's that? Because he hasn't taken his demotion lying down. The Athletics said they wanted him to cut down on strikeouts and get on base more, and so far, he has a 17.1 percent strikeout rate and .429 on-base percentage. He also hit a long home run Tuesday (see above), which isn't even something anyone is asking him to do but is nonetheless a welcome sight. There still isn't much reason to roster Ruiz in points leagues, but in categories leagues, the impact he'll make in stolen bases is unlke anything you could find on the waiver wire. And he's obviously trending toward an quick return.

Paul Skenes, SP, Pirates

2023 minors: 6 2/3 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 10 K
2024 minors: 6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 11 K

Skenes is set to make his third start Thursday, and if it's anything like his first two, it'll be must-see. As I wrote last week, he's in a class of his own as far as velocity goes, reaching triple digits on more than half of the fastballs he's thrown, and that's not even regarded as his best pitch. So far, he has one-hit the opposition through six innings, striking out 11 with a 21 percent swinging-strike rate. One curious note is that the Pirates don't seem interested in extending him beyond 45 pitches yet. Could it be that they're saving those bullets for later in the year? If Skenes starts working deeper into games, that may be our cue that he's about to come up.

Christian Scott, SP, Mets

2023 minors: 2.57 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 87 2/3 IP, 12 BB, 107 K
2024 minors: 9 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 19 K

When the Mets lost Tylor Megill to a shoulder strain at the start of April, they opted to replace him with free agent Julio Teheran rather than anyone from their farm system, but Teheran's first start was so ugly that they've already discarded him. So who's next? Conventional wisdom would say Jose Butto, who already gave the Mets a decent start on April 4, and it's also possible that Megill misses only a turn or two more. For what it's worth, though, Scott has arguably been the most impressive pitcher in the minors so far, striking out more than two batters per inning with a 69 percent strike rate and 18 percent swinging-strike rate, both of which are about as good as it gets. Just look at how these Triple-A hitters swing through his fastball:

Seeing as he's at Triple-A and turning 25 this summer, his opportunity will almost certainly come this season, and the need is right now. I couldn't help but notice that the Mets just shifted Kodai Senga to the 60-day IL. The only reason they'd do that is to free up another spot on the 40-man roster. For Scott, perhaps? Probaly not yet, but soon enough.

Heston Kjerstad, OF, Orioles

2023 minors: .303 BA (479 AB), 21 HR, .904 OPS, 42 BB, 100 K
2024 minors: .413 BA (46 AB), 6 HR, 1.391 OPS, 8 BB, 11 K

I've pushed Ricky Tiedemann and Kyle Manzardo out of my Five on the Verge because, for as much as their teams could use them, they're just not doing anything to demand a call-up right now. Kjerstad is precisely the opposite. If his 2023 wasn't evidence enough that he's too good for Triple-A, his start to 2024 certainly is. His actual production is backed up by high exit velocities, as well as better contact skills than you might expect. In most organizations, he'd have already claimed a spot in the big-league lineup at age 25, but the Orioles aren't most organizations. They're already struggling to find at-bats for Colton Cowser, another outfield prospect who beat out Kjerstad for a roster spot this spring, so it might take more than one injury to bring Kjerstad into the fold. It's clear, though, he'll be ready whenever that happens.


(Here are some other prospects doing something of note.)

Cade Povich, SP, Orioles

2023 minors: 5.04 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 126 2/3 IP, 66 BB, 171 K
2024 minors: 11 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 14 K

Povich's strikeout rate has been consistently high so far in his minor-league career, but his other numbers have left something to be desired because he's relied too much on chases for those strikeouts. The approach led to too many walks and too many hits in obvious fastball counts. The left-hander has done a better job of working in the zone through two starts this year, and you can see the strikeouts haven't abated. His fastball is still pretty blah, but his secondary arsenal (five pitches in all) may be enough to make him a success.

Dustin Harris, OF, Rangers

2023 minors: .259 BA (471 AB), 14 HR, 41 SB, .809 OPS, 84 BB, 128 K
2024 minors: .333 BA (36 AB), 3 HR, 4 SB, .970 OPS, 1 BB, 7 K

The Harris hype peaked in 2021, but his offensive profile remains plenty intriguing for Fantasy purposes. His power is playable. His eye is exceptional. He's getting better and better as a base-stealer. He just can't settle on a postioin, having bounced between first base, third base and left field. He seems to have locked in on third base this year, which is notable because the Rangers are without their third baseman for the next couple months. It wouldn't take much for Harris to get a look in that spot, particularly since he's already on the 40-man roster, and his hot hitting early on makes it all the more plausible.

Darius Vines, SP, Braves

2023 minors: 2.37 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 49 1/3 IP, 16 BB, 49 K
2024 minors: 12 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 11 K

Vines isn't often mentioned among the possible replacements for Spencer Strider, but he's been a steady performer in the minors the past few years and even delivered a couple quality starts for the big club down the stretch last year. So why wouldn't he be an option if Bryce Elder and Allan Winans don't work out? It's true he's not thought to have much upside, but his changeup at least is a legitimate swing-and-miss pitch. In fact, his latest start at Triple-A Gwinnett, in which he two-hit the Louisville Bats over seven innings, saw him pile up 23 swinging strikes, an impressive number by any standard. Clearly, Vines is capable of working deep into games, and with the Braves offense backing him, that could translate to value, if only on the low-end.

Sean Sullivan, SP, Rockies

2023 minors: 4 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
2024 minors: 6 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 13 K

A Rockies pitcher? A Rockies pitcher. What makes pitching at Coors Field so difficult isn't so much what the thin air does to the carry of the ball but what it does to the movement profile of certain pitches, namely breaking balls. So what if the Rockies were to find a pitcher who doesn't rely on breaking balls but instead the sort of fastball characteristics that can make that pitch a bat-misser in its own right? Sullivan, a left-hander, has the sort of low arm slot perfect for generating whiffs up in the zone, and that's how his minor-leaguer career has played out so far. His first start at High-A Spokane was a real doozy. He struck out 13 while recording 20 swinging strikes.

Zyhir Hope, OF, Dodgers

2023 minors: .286 BA (35 AB), 3 HR, 3 SB, .962 OPS, 8 BB, 13 K
2024 minors: .350 BA (20 AB), 3 HR, 2 SB, 1.408 OPS, 3 BB, 4 K

One of two prospects acquired from the Cubs in the Michael Busch deal this offseason, Hope is already providing further evidence that the Dodgers know what they're doing. Though only 19 and in his first year of full-season ball, he's already connected for a 113 mph home run, which is some big-league power. He earns even higher marks for his speed, and there are no signs of contact issues yet. Hope is still largely unknown in Dynasty circles, but that could change quickly.