When mapping out this year’s Top 100, I kept getting lost in the layout. I’ve tried a few different ways to skin this cat, and I think my favorite so far was my first: Top 25 Prospects for 2020 Fantasy Baseball.

It was simple, sleek, easy to see, easy to scroll, and it was built in tiers, which feels like a realistic lens through which to view these players. You can argue that George Kirby is definitively a better prospect than Nick Lodolo if you want to, or vice versa, but if you get offered one for the other in a trade, you might freeze up like me pondering the layout of this article. The differences are real, certainly, but they’re more aesthetic and subjective than anything like objective truth. It’s a difference in type or style more than a difference of quality. 

I’ll try to stay concise in between the tiers here, but you can access a more in-depth consideration of each individual player by clicking on their names or skimming around in the 2022 Minor League Preview Index

Here’s a link to the Top 25 before we roll on down the mountain. 

Drumroll please and away we go!

 

26. OF Seiya Suzuki | Cubs | 27 | NPB | 2022

He’s not really a prospect, but he should be a good rookie in Chicago!

Here’s a link to Coolwhip breaking it down in Seiya’ll Be There

 

27. RHP Eury Perez | Marlins | 18 | A+ | 2023

28. 1B Dustin Harris | Rangers | 22 | A+ | 2023

29. LHP Nick Lodolo | Reds | 24 | AAA | 2022

30. RHP George Kirby | Mariners | 24 | AA | 2022

Eury Perez is the most likely of all Miami’s prospect arms to become a true fantasy ace . . . if they can support him with a decent team on the field.

My brother sent me a list of names to rank for his 20-team FYPD coming up. Lotta great players left on the board by a very-early cut-off date for minor league add/drops. Harris, of course, was on it, and looking at him in comparison to a series of names over text in the context of a team that I’d once operated, I realized how much I want Dustin Harris on my fantasy teams. Some of this is selection bias, as I watched a fair bit of Harris throughout the off-season and found his bat path to be particularly variable through a consistent base. This is the same skill I liked most about Bo Bichette. His game is myriad in the batter’s box, allowing him to foul off a lot of tough pitches and zero-in during an at bat. Harris is not as talented as Bichette, but he should be able to make the most of his opportunities in a similar manner where time equals growth. 

Lodolo has a lot working for him, especially a nasty angle from the left side, but I keep wanting to drop him a little given the directionless state of that organization. 

Kirby could be puffed up to just about anywhere outside the top ten and I wouldn’t flinch. He’s been a bit hittable with the fastball so far, but he’s a delight to watch. His changeup is going to be a nightmare for big league lefties. 

 

31. C Francisco Alvarez | Mets | 20 | A+ | 2023

32. OF Alek Thomas | Diamondbacks | 21 | AAA | 2022

33. 2B Nick Yorke | Red Sox | 19 | A+ | 2023

Alvarez gets a catcher penalty here, and Thomas gets a proximity and opportunity boost. A lot of people like Alek Thomas more than me, but I still want him where I can get him. Just don’t trust that organization or their AAA outcomes due to friendly hitting environments.

Yorke is much more than just a yip-yip hitter. He’s got that dawg in him and will likely be the youngest infielder in AA early in 2022. Can make a case for him in the top 25. 

 

34. RHP Daniel Espino | Guardians | 21 | A+ | 2023

35. C Keibert Ruiz | Nationals | 23 | MLB | 2020

36. 3B Juan Yepez | Cardinals |  24 | AAA | 2022

37. 1B Nick Pratto | Royals | 23 | AAA | 2022

Three proximity bats and a big-time arm with the talent to stand alone atop the pitching ranks next season. 

Espino is where the rankings break apart a little through the lens of Which Trades Would I Make. I’m pretty sure I’d send the guys 31-33 to get him, but that’s a personal preference thing, and he probably shouldn’t cost that much in most leagues. 

Ruiz is a nice target in redraft leagues. He’s at 96 at bats, so he’ll graduate off the list a couple weeks into the season. 

Yepez could tumble a bit here if the Cardinals clog the DH spot with a free agent, but as of today, there’s not a whole lot separating him and Jose Miranda for the short term. 

 

38. SS Kahlil Watson | Marlins | 18 | CPX | 2024

39. SS Orelvis Martinez | Blue Jays | 20 | A+ | 2021 

40. SS Brayan Rocchio | Guardians | 21 | AA | 2023

41. SS Eddys Leonard | Dodgers | 21 | A+ | 2023

42. SS Vaughn Grissom | Atlanta | 21 | A+ | 2023

43. SS Jeremy Peña | Astros | 24 | AAA | 2022

As we get nearer to an actual season, proximity is playing a bigger role in my thinking than it did at times throughout the positional and team breakdowns. I always try to keep actual near-term stats high on my list of prospect priorities, but it’s hard to keep it in focus over the winter as the vast majority of coverage moves in the opposite direction, leaving time itself as mostly a non-factor in considerations of baseball’s future stars. I get it. You don’t want to get distracted when your goal is simply overall future potential, but for our purposes, we need to weigh present versus future through a more aggressive lens and rush guys like Jeremy Peña up the lists when it looks like they’ve got their chance. Should also be wary of putting guys like Kahlil Watson way above more established players when Watson will be waiting several years for his first big league at bat.

I love this group of players. Give me every single one at their present perceived value with the possible exceptions of Martinez and Rocchio. 

Leonard has gathered some hype over the off-season after a relatively quiet ascent in 2021. Razzball is probably still a little above the market here, but not by much and not for long. You could copy and paste that blurb for Grissom and Peña. I have these three guys on a lot of fantasy teams. 

 

44. 2B Nick Gonzales | Pirates | 22 | A+ | 2023

45. SS Marcelo Mayer | Red Sox | 19 | CPX | 2025

46. SS Brady House | Nationals | 18 | CPX | 2024

47. 1B Vinnie Pasquantino | Royals | 24 | AA | 2022

48. OF Andy Pages | Dodgers | 21 | A+ | 2023

49. OF Everson Pereira | Yankees | A+ | 20 | 2023

50. 1B Jhonkensy Noel | Guardians | 20 | A+ | 2023

Gonzales played well in his debut season and could climb the list in a hurry, but his strikeout rate was a little high (27.4 percent), and he didn’t run a whole lot (7 SB in 80 games), but he remains a high-probability big league regular who provides above average production for his position. 

Mayer and House might have more trade value than anyone in the tier, given their value is still tethered to their top-of-the-class FYPD evaluations. I’d be fine with trading either. 

Might be out over my skis on Vinnie P, but he just hits and hits and hits and doesn’t strike out. 

Pages, Pereira and Noel all have light-tower power and have produced against much older competitors. Could push any of these three up the list if you’re feeling frisky. 

Thanks for reading! 

I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter.  

37 Comments
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Taco
Taco
6 months ago

Hi Itch, do you have a list of foreign players that may come to the US from Asia, Cuba, etc. And where they may rank on your prospect lists. I remember seeing Seiya Suzuki on a past list and also other guys. Not thinking of the 16 year olds, but mainly guys who are already professionals playing elsewhere besides MLB or the minor leagues. Thanks

Scott Kimmel
Scott Kimmel
6 months ago

Itch,

He changed the deal slightly. it’s the same deal Jackson and Cowser for Dominguez but without the pick. Would you still make the deal? I can really use your help.

Scott Kimmel
Scott Kimmel
6 months ago

Itch,

Got a trade offer.

I trade Luke Jackson and minor league prospect Colton Cowser for Jasson Dominguez and a 6th rd minor league draft pick. Would you make the deal?

Scott Kimmel
Scott Kimmel
Reply to  Scott Kimmel
6 months ago

Itch,

He changed the deal slightly. it’s the same deal Jackson and Cowser for Dominguez but without the pick. Would you still make the deal? I can really use your help.

Scott Kimmel
Scott Kimmel
Reply to  The Itch
6 months ago

Shop who?

Cardy
Cardy
6 months ago

Where’s my dude Nolan Gorman?! He’s better than some of these guys and should contribute this season. Am I wrong?

luvdarooks
6 months ago

260 NL only 23 starters 40 man roster. MiLB stay at salary till activated. All others get a $5/year raise…
My definite keeper are $1Tatis(ouch! boohoo)-$17 Soto-$14 O’neill- $32 Scherzer-$13 Peralta -MILB keepers are $5 L MatosSF& $2Cavalli….Who ‘s the next three from these?
$2Hedbert Perez
$5Gore
$2Wilman Diaz
$2R Hinds

$11 B. Rogers
$14 Ranger Suarez
$10 Luis Garcia SS/2B Nationals
$11 T. Mcgill
$6 B. DeLacruz

Can keep a total of 10 players

Philip
Philip
6 months ago

Itch, I’m holding onto P. Leon for the speed upside. Would you dump him for Leonard or Grissom? Thanks!

Montezuma's Revenge ... right now
Montezuma's Revenge ... right now
6 months ago

haha, in one 16 teamer where i traded for 2 early 2nd rounders and already had a late 1st and early 2nd, got all 4 of these in the last few days: e.perez (1st rounder), d.harris, grissom and r.suarez (SD) as i’m out of prospect space entirely and upgraded my saves (saves and holds sold separately here, and i have good RP’s, but most of them not for sure “closers”). didn’t know exactly where the 3 of those would be in here, but figured they would be. could also drop like say h.hernandez for some early 1st year OF’ers (maybe, by my next pick, but probably won’t)

Hu Ann Eat Oh
Hu Ann Eat Oh
6 months ago

Hi Itch,

How far off were Valera, Henry Davis and Johan Rojas?

Dr Sauce
Dr Sauce
6 months ago

Sounds like Witt’s path to every day at bats is 3b and it sounds like it’s his spot to lose (for opening day).
Given this information, in a ESPN, 6 player keep forever (no limits), 5X5 Roto would you consider trading Mookie Betts for an early first round pick to keep Witt? My other 5 keepers are Bichette, Ohtani, Acuna, Robert and Tucker.
With the pick I get from Betts, thinking I could draft a pitcher like Peralta, Urias or Gausman. I am finding it difficult to pull the trigger on dropping Bobby Witt!

On another note, I love Tatis and would like to acquire him. Given his injury, what kind of a player or package of players could you see acquiring him. I have the players mentioned above. Also have Matt Olson, Austin Riley, Urias Gausman and Ketel Marte

Thanks Itch, really dig your stuff!

Laura Holt
6 months ago

Hey Itch! Your posts can’t come fast enough for me; I have my two annual minor league drafts coming up and as I always say, the prospect watch is by far the weakest part of my fantasy game. I may have to harass you via email for some advice, but for now will just ask you about my AL-only draft. The three top guys available to me will likely be Miranda, Yorke, and Dustin Harris. Obviously still could be moving parts in MIN, but what’s your gut on whether Miranda is on the opening day roster? If he’s not, I was planning on drafting him for my minor league team… but your write-up of Harris has me intrigued; should I be considering him instead?

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Laura Holt
6 months ago

Laura I love your question AND I would love your input on my trade offer above please. Been a fan of your content as well!

Laura Holt
Reply to  Sport
6 months ago

Thanks Sport! My first instinct is yes, pull the trigger, but is this weekly changes? (I know you said Ohtani can be P or hitter, but do you have to decide one or the other and then stick with it for the week?)

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Laura Holt
6 months ago

It’s daily changes.

Laura Holt
Reply to  Sport
6 months ago

Ah, that makes it a tough call IMO… like I said my gut is to sell high on Ohtani and the promise of Kwan and put all your eggs in the Bobby Witt basket. But I feel like I might try to see if you could get a slight upgrade over Franmil, especially if you can only play him at U… love him, but I’m not as excited about him for dynasty. Ugh, this is reminding me why I almost never trade in my keeper leagues, I get WAY too emotionally attached to guys… if I had Kwan I don’t think I could bear to part with him at this point in case he breaks out (but this is the reason I’m still sitting on an almost worthless Mackenzie Gore in my keeper league, so I’m going say do whatever Itch says to, ha ha!)

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Laura Holt
6 months ago

Thank you Laura! I really enjoyed your response to this. Completely get everything you said and probably why I brought it to you Razzball writers for input. Thank you for your time!

Laura Holt
Reply to  The Itch
6 months ago

Thank you on all fronts! Super helpful for me to have those slightly more under the radar names — once the top guys are off the board the owners in my league really like to go for the college/even HS players to try to be the first to the next Bryce Harper… while I like to look at more of the medium floor guys who will be up sooner rather than later. Really hope Harris makes it to me with my second pick; thinking if Miranda starts the year with the Twins (and therefore ineligible for our draft) I’ll go with Yorke and hope I can get both. Most sites seem pretty high on Yorke so hoping either he works out for me, or if I get impatient I can probably use him to swing a decent trade for MLB help this season.

David Sorenson
David Sorenson
6 months ago

What about Jack Leiter?

Sport
Sport
6 months ago

Not prospect related….but I traded LouRob in a 12 team dynasty roto for Manoah and Ohtani.

Now I was offered Bobby Witt Jr and Franmil for my Ohtani and Kwan. Would you do that?!
It’s fantrax, so Ohtani is a hitter and SP.

Last edited 6 months ago by Sport
Sport
Sport
6 months ago

Love the list! I was waiting for 26-50 as most of the top 25 aren’t available anymore. There are some names on this list though could be had still in my opinion.

Thank you!

Seltzah
Seltzah
6 months ago

Great lists as always Itch!

For a guy who is probably not making your lists- do we think Kevin Smith gets the 3B job in Oakland now? Does the power still play there?