Alex Kielar | Aug 28th, 2019
With September looming and pennant races tightening, it’s almost time for major league rosters to expand from 25 to 40. So I am going to give you a series of articles breaking down the likely most impactful September Call-Ups for all 30 teams. Now for the National League Central.
St. Louis Cardinals: OF Dylan Carlson
Only 20 years old, Carlson has one of the highest ceilings of any of the current top prospects. The switch-hitting outfielder has really grown into his hitting this season, between Double-A and Triple-A he has slashed .297/.378/.542 with 24 home runs and 66 RBIs while showcasing his speed with 18 stolen bases. He was called up to Triple-A on August 15 and has played in 11 games there, dominating the Pacific Coast League. Carlson has outstanding outfield defense helped by his wheels and will give the Cardinals a push in September to help them fight for a playoff spot.
Chicago Cubs: RHP Adbert Alzolay
The Cubs have been really struggling lately, falling out of first place to the Cardinals. The main cause of their struggles has been their pitching and need all the help they can get to still make the playoffs. Alzolay is their No. 5 overall prospect and has performed fairly well for Triple-A Iowa, averaging 12.5 strikeouts per nine and allowing a .226 batting average against in 61.1 innings pitched. He has a solid curveball and a plus 92-96 mph fastball which should be good weapons to really help out the Cubs bullpen down the stretch. The Cubs still hope he will develop into a starter in the future.
Milwaukee Brewers: 3B Travis Shaw
Shaw has been up-and-down from Triple-A and the Majors this season, as he has struggled in Milwaukee while performing well at Triple-A. He had a solid last couple seasons with the Brewers and is still a good hitter. In Triple-A this season, he has slashed .295/.460/.598 with 11 home runs and 29 RBIs. He should get a chance to get some more at-bats in September, but more likely off the bench. The Brewers are still within striking distance of a playoff spot, and if he can translate what he has done in Triple-A and the last couple seasons, he should help them a good amount.
Cincinnati Reds: C Tyler Stephenson
The Reds have been hit with catching injuries this season which has brought Stephenson as a possible call-up option. The seventh-ranked prospect for the Reds, Stephenson is definitely the future for them behind the plate. This September, with the Reds out of the playoff hunt, is a good time to get an early look. He has had a solid August to finish off his Triple-A season strong, slashing .346/.444/.519. The future for the Reds is very strong and Stephenson will be a very strong piece of that.
Pittsburgh Pirates: 3B Ke’Bryan Hayes
The son of World Series Champion Charlie Hayes, Ke’ Bryan is the future third basemen for the Pirates. Pittsburgh has struggled with defense at the hot corner and Hayes is a future perennial gold glove winner with plus agility, arm, hands, and instincts. It should be very exciting this year to get an early look since his hitting has continued to improve. He has improved his patience at the plate with his walk rate going up and he has started to drive the ball more, hitting ten home runs, 29 doubles, and driving in 54 runs this season.
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