mlb 07/28/08 3:17 PM ET Jonathan Mayo is a senior reporter for]]> For this week, we'll go back to the trusty old format of the Exchange, taking a look at some intriguing names at each level. So sit back, enjoy and put the Trade Deadline recap in your calendar for next week.

In the bigs

So many interesting names, so little space. Offensively, there are a couple of guys who could possibly help out now, especially for those who take part in single-league formats. In the American League, there's Oakland's Eric Patterson, who came over from the Cubs in the Rich Harden deal. He doesn't have a true position, but he's got some offensive skills that could help out immediately. Patterson hit .303 with a .367 on-base percentage and a .475 slugging percentage in the Minors, not bad for a guy who should make enough appearances to qualify at second base. He probably won't hit many homers in Oakland, but he should make use of the speed that rang up 16 steals in 266 Minor League at-bats this year. The A's will likely give him a nice look, and you should, too.

Over the National League, Steve Pearce is the immediate beneficiary of the Xavier Nady trade in Pittsburgh. The Pirates still have some outfield options -- Jason Michaels played right field in a game over the weekend -- but I have to think they'll give Pearce a good opportunity to play and drive in runs. Pearce wasn't setting the world on fire at Triple-A, but he did have eight steals and 11 homers, and his power should be playable at the big league level. Watch to see how often his name appears in the Pirates lineup; he could be a nice outfield option, especially for those deep leagues.

I'll give you a pitcher to think about from each league as well. Clayton Richard's big league debut for the White Sox was a mixed bag: He struck out seven and walked only one, though he was also knocked around for seven hits and four earned runs in as many frames. That said, this is a guy who went 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 19 total starts across two levels in the Minors -- which earned him the starting nod for the U.S. in the Futures Game -- and he might stick with the big club a while. That means he'll miss his trip to the Olympics, but AL-only owners could wind up benefiting from his taste of the Majors.

In the senior circuit, keeper leaguers especially need to know about Jeff Samardzija. That's right, the guy who used to be Notre Dame's wide receiver. The whole pitching thing seems to be going well for him, as he's with the big club just two years after being drafted. Not bad for a guy who was splitting time between two sports in college. A starter in the Minors -- and he might be a good one down the road -- Samardzija will pitch in relief for the time being, and he's already showing that his stuff plays well in that role. I don't see him closing right now, but he could work his way into regular setup duty and help out a fantasy squad with some Ks, decent ratios and maybe even the occasional save.

A phone call away

If we're going to talk about Steve Pearce, we certainly can't ignore Andrew McCutchen. He remains the top prospect in the Pirates system, and if the Pirates go all out and trade Jason Bay, McCutchen could be the next guy up. He's struggled a little bit since the All-Star break, but he's generally done a lot of nice things in Triple-A at age 21. McCutchen is a five-tool talent, and while the power might come a little later, he'll take some walks and let his speed work for him (26 steals). If he does get the call, keeper-league owners will want to grab him immediately.

The Red Sox certainly have more than their fair share of young pitching, so sometimes Michael Bowden gets lost in the shuffle. The 21-year-old is making his impact felt in the organization, though, as he led the Double-A Eastern League with a 2.33 ERA and a .192 average against before earning a promotion. He's picked right up at Triple-A, turning in a one-run, six-inning effort in his most recent outing. You might have to hold off until 2009 to make use of his abilities, but Bowden will be worth the wait.

A year away

With the way he's swinging the bat, Mat Gamel is no doubt making it easier for the Milwaukee organization to adjust to the loss of Matt LaPorta. Gamel leads the Southern League in batting average, RBIs, on-base and slugging, and is tied for third in homers. He's still working on his defensive game, but assuming he can stick at third, the 23-year-old should get a shot at the hot corner with the Brewers, perhaps as early as next season.

A Texas League All-Star and Futures Game participant, our old friend Will Inman is still getting it done in San Antonio. He leads the hitter-friendly circuit with 115 strikeouts and ranks second with a 3.01 ERA in 107 2/3 innings. The 21-year-old has also issued 58 walks, but his control problems should get ironed out as he matures. Worst-case, he becomes a terrific short reliever, but I think there's more there.

Down the road

Let's look at the 2008 draftees and how they're doing, shall we? Not surprisingly, Cardinals first-rounder Brett Wallace has been tearing it up in the Midwest League. He's batting .316 with a .429 OBP and a .526 SLG through 21 games, and word has it he could see Double-A before the season is over. His defense could use some work -- he's made three errors in 19 games at third and it will be interesting to see if he can stick at the hot corner. Even if that doesn't happen, Wallace won't be "down the road" for very long.

It was a good year for college relievers in the Draft, as several of them went in the first round. The University of Miami's Carlos Gutierrez may have been the biggest surprise in that group, and he's pitching at the highest level of those who have already signed. At Fort Myers in the Class A Advanced Florida State League, the right-hander has tossed eight innings and given up two runs on nine hits, striking out four in six games. He, like the others, should move pretty quickly.

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