MLB Top Prospects Open Spring Training
MLB opened spring training games this weekend. How did the top prospects in the game fare?
Minor league players have their own area of the team’s MLB spring training complex where they practice and eventually play games both inter- and intra-squad. However, many of the top MLB prospects were invited to their respective teams’ major league spring trainings and opened with games this weekend. Let’s take a look at how they all did…
Andrew Benintendi is the consensus top prospect in the game, and he played in two games over the weekend, going 0-5 with a walk and a strikeout.
Yoan Moncada had some variability in his ranking, but consensus was roughly the second-rated guy due to his immense talent. He opened his first spring with the White Sox going 0-2 with a walk, a strikeout and a run scored. He also played at second base in both games.
Like Benintendi, Dansby Swanson will quickly lose his rookie status, but he was a consensus top-five prospect. He opened spring training playing in one game over the weekend, going 1-2.
The Yankees acquired Gleyber Torres in the Aroldis Chapman deal, and he’s established himself as a top-five prospect in the game. He came out very well in spring, going 2-3 with two doubles, two runs scored and an RBI.
Dodgers first base prospect Cody Bellinger is considered one of the top power prospects in the game. He flashed that power already this spring, going 1-6 with a solo home run and a strikeout.
Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Austin Meadows is likely to come up as an outfielder if the Pirates trade one of their stable. He went 1-4 with a double, RBI and a strikeout.
Eloy Jimenez was the breakout prospect at last season’s Future Stars game. He had five at-bats for the Cubs over the weekend, going 2-5 with a run scored.
Mets shortstop prospect Amed Rosario put himself on the radar to appear in New York sooner rather than later with his 2016 performance. He opened spring 2-6 with two RBI and a strikeout.
Rockies prospect Brendan Rodgers only had one at-bat, but he made it count, slapping a double and scoring a run.
Rafael Devers is considered the best third base prospect in the game currently. He had two at-bats for the Red Sox over the weekend and went 0-2.
Oakland Athletics shortstop Franklin Barreto started out well, going 2-3 with a caught stealing.
Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier flashed the bright and dim of his profile, going 2-4 with a triple, run and two RBI, but also striking out twice, once in pretty bad fashion.
Rays infielder Willy Adames went 0-2 with a walk.
Phillies shortstop J.P. Crawford is attempting to win the shortstop job this spring. He went 1-6 to open the spring.
Padres outfielders Hunter Renfroe and Manny Margot are looking to take starting spots in the San Diego outfield in 2017. Renfroe went 1-2 with a double, run scored and an RBI while Margot flashed his excellent defense while going 1-5 with a double.
One of the brightest openings of the spring was Indians outfielder Bradley Zimmer, who could make an impact on the Indians outfield in 2017. He went 2-4 with a home run, run scored, five RBI and also walked.
Top-rated catcher Francisco Mejia made just one appearance for the Indians, going 0-1.
After receiving early criticism for his lack of power, Mets first base prospect Dominic Smith turned on the power big-time in 2016. He flashed more so far, going 1-6 with a double, run scored, RBI, two walks and two strikeouts.
Pirates shortstop prospect Kevin Newman opened spring with a 1-4 showing.
Zack Collins was the top-rated catcher in the 2016 draft. With the White Sox this spring, he’s gone 1-4 with a strikeout and stolen a base.
Ronald Acuna is a prospect that popped up on the national radar with a big performance in limited time. He will likely climb even further in rankings this season, but as a teenager, he’s getting a taste of Atlanta Braves camp. He had two pinch-hitting appearances this weekend, going 2-2 with a run scored.
Hunter Dozier is working to earn time at third base or in the outfield for the Royals, whether that be in 2017 or looking toward multiple openings in 2018. He went 2-4 with a triple and an RBI. He also added a walk.
Dodgers outfielder Alex Verdugo may be a year away, but he’s making a good impression so far, going 1-2 with solo home run.
Mariners outfielder Tyler O’Neill had a big 2016 and opened spring of 2017 with a 1-5 showing with a double, two RBI, two walks and two strikeouts.
Ian Happ has been a fairly controversial prospect just because of questions about where he’ll eventually play, but there are typically no questions about his bat. He went 1-5 with a double and a strikeout on the weekend.
Twins shortstop prospect Nick Gordon had just one at-bat, but he did collect a hit on it.
Rockies outfielder Raimel Tapia is working to get playing time in the Colorado outfield. He went 1-4 in two games with a run scored and a strikeout. He also went 1-2 stealing bases.
Phillies outfielder Nick Williams is on a possible make-or-break year as far as his prospect status goes. He opened spring well, going 2-3 with a run, two RBI, a walk and strikeout, and a stolen base.
Cardinals catcher Carson Kelly has established himself well in the prospect community. He opened spring going 1-1 with an RBI and a walk.
Chance Sisco is one of the few catchers ranked in most top lists. He had one at-bat on the weekend, going 0-1.
Cardinals outfielder Harrison Bader is working to show he can earn a spot for 2018. He hit 1-3 with a solo home run.
Astros outfielder Derek Fisher worked hard over the offseason to improve his approach, and he went 1-4 with a double and an RBI, though he did strike out three times.
Fisher’s former teammate Brett Phillips also spent the offseason working on his approach and conditioning, but his start in Brewers camp was a bit more positive, going 1-2 with a run scored in one game played.
Seattle Mariners first baseman Dan Vogelbach opened with a 2-4 line with a walk and two strikeouts.
Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge is looking to win the right field job in the Bronx this spring. He put a good foot forward, going 1-4 with a solo home run and a strikeout.
Athletics third base prospect Matt Chapman may be the best defensive third baseman in the majors or minors and has a big power bat. He unleashed that already in the spring, going 1-4 with a home run and two RBI. He also struck out.
Cuban signee Lourdes Gurriel went 0-2 with the Blue Jays to open spring.
JaCoby Jones has a chance to take an outfield job for the Tigers and made a good opening weekend statement, going 2-5 with a run scored.
Indians outfielder Greg Allen is a speedster with elite defense who could push Tyler Naquin for time this season. He went 0-4 in his one game over the weekend.
Angels first base prospect Matt Thaiss simply hit after being drafted in 2016, and he showed a good eye already in the spring, going 0-2, but scoring a run as he walked twice and struck out once.
Jesse Winker is competing for time in the Cincinnati outfield. He opened spring going 1-4 with a run scored and three strikeouts.
Cuban infielder Andy Ibanez is showing well in Rangers camp, going 1-2 with a solo home run.
Rockies catcher Tom Murphy is fighting for playing time, and had a very solid game, going 1-3 with a double and a run scored while striking out once in his only game of the weekend.
Rays hitters Jake Bauers and Connor Gillaspie opened in camp as well, though they’re likely 2018 contributors. Bauers went 0-2 and Gillaspie went 0-5 with a strikeout.
The Brewers acquired infielder Mauricio Dubon from the Red Sox this offseason. He went 0-2 with a strikeout. Teammate Josh Nottingham went 0-1 in his one appearance at catcher with a strikeout.
Twins catcher Mitch Garver is competing to earn major league playing time, and so far his bat is playing well, going 1-2 with a walk and strikeout.
Power-hitting Phillies prospect teammates had opposite opening weekends as Rhys Hoskins went 2-3 with a double and a solo home run, scoring two runs and walking twice, while Dylan Cozens went 1-7 with a run and RBI, but walked once and struck out seven times. He did steal two bases.
Once-elite prospect D.J. Peterson went 2-2 with a double, two runs scored and an RBI as he competes for a platoon first base job in Mariners camp. His brother Dustin Peterson has hit well for the Braves attempting to make his impression on the future outfield plans in Atlanta, going 3-5 with a run scored.
Blue Jays prospect outfielder Anthony Alford went 2-5 with a double, RBI, steal, walk and two strikeouts. His teammate, shortstop Richard Urena, went 2-5 with a double, a run and a strikeout. Jays first base prospect Rowdy Tellez went 1-5 with two runs, a double, a walk and four strikeouts.
After Alex Reyes went down with Tommy John surgery, Tyler Glasnow moved into the consensus top pitching prospect in the game, and he showed it in his first appearance, going two innings, allowing no runs, giving up a single hit, and striking out all six outs he recorded.
Reds lefty Amir Garrett is working to earn a rotation spot this spring and had mixed results in his first outing, going 1 2/3 innings, allowing one run on two hits and a walk, striking out two. Fellow top Reds prospect Robert Stephenson was hit hard, going one inning, allowing four runs on three hits and two walks.
Twins lefty Stephen Gonsalves threw a scoreless inning, as did fellow prospect Fernando Romero, who added a walk and two strikeouts to his inning.
Zack Burdi looks to go from 2016 draftee to a member of the Chicago White Sox bullpen, and his first outing looked solid as he threw a scoreless inning. Teammate Carson Fulmer also impressed, going two scoreless innings with one hit and one walk allowed, striking out three.
Tyler Beede threw two scoreless innings for the Giants with two hits and a walk allowed.
Royals flamethrower Josh Staumont opened his season with a scoreless inning, walking two and striking out one.
Ty Blach got hit around a bit in his bid for a rotation spot with the San Francisco Giants, going two innings, allowing one run on four hits, striking out one.
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German Marquez of the Rockies made a positive impression as he states his case for a rotation spot, going two scoreless innings, allowing just two hits.
After a rough experience at AAA in 2016, Jorge Lopez was looking to make a good impression in Brewers camp, but his first opportunity did not go well as he gave up four runs (three earned) in an inning on four hits and a walk.
Sandy Alcantara has a big fastball, but struggled in his first chance to show it off for the Cardinals this spring, going 1 1/3 innings, allowing four runs on five hits, walking two and striking out two.
Yankees relief prospect Jonathan Holder had a solid first inning of spring, allowing no hits, runs, or walks, and striking out two.
Royals pitcher Kyle Zimmer is looking to return from (another) injury, and had a rough first outing, going 1 1/3 innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on four hits and a walk, striking out one.
Phillies pitcher Ben Lively is not a guy who has elite stuff, but he is fighting for a #5 spot in the rotation. He put up two scoreless innings, allowing a hit and striking out two.
Former top prospect Mark Appel did not fare so well for the Phillies, going two innings, allowing two runs on two hits, though he did strike out three.
- Aaron Judge
- Alex Verdugo
- Álexander Reyes
- Amir Garrett
- Anthony Alford
- Atlanta Braves
- Bradley Zimmer
- Brett Phillips
- Carson Fulmer
- Carson Kelly
- Chicago Cubs
- Chicago White Sox
- Cincinnati Reds
- Cleveland Indians
- Cody Bellinger
- Colorado Rockies
- D.J. Peterson
- Dansby Swanson
- Derek Fisher
- Detroit Tigers
- Dustin Renfroe
- Dylan Cozens
- Fernando Romero
- Francisco Mejia
- Franklin Barreto
- German Rosario
- Gleyber Torres
- Greg Allen
- Harrison Bader
- Houston Astros
- Hunter Dozier
- Ian Happ
- Jacoby Jones
- Jakob Bauers
- Jesse Winker
- Kansas City Royals
- Los Angeles Angels
- Los Angeles Dodgers
- Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
- Mauricio Dubon
- Milwaukee Brewers
- Minnesota Twins
- Mitchell Garver
- New York Mets
- New York Yankees
- Oakland Athletics
- Philadelphia Phillies
- Pittsburgh Pirates
- Raimel Tapia
- Richard Urena
- Robert Stephenson
- Rowdy Tellez
- San Diego Padres
- San Francisco Giants
- Seattle Mariners
- St. Louis Cardinals
- Tampa Bay Rays
- Thomas Murphy
- Toronto Blue Jays
- Tyler Glasnow
- Tyler Naquin
- Tyson Blach
- Willy Adames
- Yoan Moncada