ready for the majors
2022 Rookie Prospects
Spring is in the air; the birds are beginning to chirp, the warm weather air will slowly begin to arrive and the baseball season is just around the corner. As fans look forward to another exciting Major League Baseball season filled with the games’ brightest stars shooting for top major baseball milestones, packed stadiums, cold drinks and crackerjack snacks. As the excitement builds for the proven stars of the game, the next wave of young superstars shines as bright as ever led by a few star headliners that have dominated the minors who could reach the MLB level during the 2022 MLB schedule, but are they ready for the majors.
As last year’s brightest star from the minors, Wander Franco, made his much-anticipated debut for the Tampa Bay Rays, the torch was passed to the other top prospects in the minors that are ready for the majors. One of those players is the Baltimore Orioles top prospect and overall top prospect Adley Rutschman who the team drafted with the first overall selection during the 2019 MLB Draft. In addition, the list of talented prospects includes Bobby Witt Jr, Julio Rodriguez, Spencer Torkelson, Anthony Volpe, Shane Baz and Grayson Rodriguez.
Adley Rutschman – Baltimore Orioles
Born: February 6th 1998
Draft: Baltimore Orioles, 1st round 1st pick 2019
The Baltimore Orioles top prospect has made quick progress through the team’s minor league organizations both in 2019 and 2021 (cancelled Minor League Season in 2020). After a slow start in 2021, Rutschman got home moving from Bowie to Norfolk. In 43 at-bats, the talented catcher showcased his premier bat posting a .312 batting average to go along with five home runs and 20 runs batted in over just 43 games. In all, Rutschman posted a .278 batting average with 27 home runs and 101 runs batted in during 160 Minor League games. The top overall prospect has the potential to be a middle of the lineup hitter while also ranking as one of the top defensive catchers in all of baseball, once he arrives at the major league level.
Bobby Witt Jr. – Kansas City Royals
Sitting just behind or in the eyes of some ahead of this top prospect is the Kansas City Royals stud infielder Bobby Witt Jr. During the 2021 campaign, Witt bounced from double AA to the Royals Triple-A affiliate the Omaha Royals after posting a .295 batting average to go along with 16 home runs and 51 runs batted in. Witt Jr didn’t slow down there as the production increased down the stretch at the highest level of the minors. In 62 games at Omaha, Witt Jr posted 17 home runs with 46 runs batted in. In addition to his ability to hit for power, the Royals infielder is a solid defender and a threat to steal a base any time he is on base.
Born: June 14th 2000
Draft: Kansas City Royals, 1st round 2nd pick 2019
Julio Rodriguez – Seattle Mariners
Born: December 29th 2000
Signed with Seattle Mariners as an International Free Agent 2017
The excitement doesn’t stop there as the Seattle Mariners stud outfielder Julio Rodriguez is another one of those top stars that should make his much-anticipated arrival during the 2022 MLB season. Rodriguez who the Mariners signed as an international free agent at just 16 years old is set to make a jump to the majors at some point during the 2022 MLB season. This much-anticipated arrival reminds the Mariners fans of another stud they formerly awaited upon Ken Griffey Jr. The Mariners young outfielder has plus size bat who can hit for average and for power while also having the speed to play at all three outfield positions. The big question now is when will we see Rodriguez in the Mariners lineup?
Spencer Torkelson – Kansas City Royals
Spencer Torkelson is just another number one overall top draft pick to watch during the upcoming 2022 MLB season. Torkelson who the Detroit Tigers selected with the 1st overall pick during the 2020 MLB draft, has showed cased his overall talent at the plate and his ability to be a big-time power hitter at the MLB level. While Torkelson could slot in at either corner infield slot, the expectations are he will begin his career at first base. In his first years in the Minors, Torkelson jumped from High A ball to Triple-A while posting a .267 combined batting average mark with 30 home runs and 91 runs batted in. The future looks bright in Detroit as the Torkelson hype train makes the way to Comerica Park in 2022.
1st Baseman/3rd Baseman
Born: August 26th 1999
Draft: Detroit Tigers, 1st round 1st pick 2020
Julio Rodriguez – Seattle Mariners
Born: April 28th 2001
Draft: New York Yankees, 1st round 30th pick 2019
It doesn’t take much for the fans of the New York Yankees to be excited as the team is loaded with talent and expectations year in and year out. The same is the case in 2022 but with one major difference coming in the likes of the team’s top prospect Anthony Volpe. Volpe who is ranked 13th prospect in Major League Baseball has the potential to take over the shortstop spot and finally give the team the replacement and future they have been looking for since the retirement of Derek Jeter. Volpe is coming off a 27 home run and 86 runs batted in performance between Low A and High A ball in 2021. While the hype may have to wait another season in New York, the future is shining bright as Volpe slowly approaches Yankee Stadium.
Shane Baz – Tampa Bay Rays
Year in and year out another Tampa Bay Rays player lands as one of the top prospects in all of the minors. Last year was Wander Franco and this year it is the team’s talented right-handed starter Shane Baz. Baz has a solid size and frame that promises a solid future while also commanding the right mix of pitch selection to his arsenal. Baz is one of only a few of the exciting future young stars to make it to the Majors last year as he appeared in three games allowing a 2.03 earned run average while posting two wins. Now as he has garnered some experience, Baz will look to take the mound every five days in 2022 for the Rays as the team looks to build on their success in 2021.
Born: June 17th 1999
Draft: Pittsburgh Pirates, 1st Round 12th pick 2017
(Acquired by Tampa Bay Rays August 2018)
Grayson Rodriguez – Baltimore Orioles
Born: November 16th 1999
Draft: Baltimore Orioles, 1st round 11th pick 2019
While Shane Baz lands as the top right-handed pitching prospect, the Baltimore Orioles top pitching prospect is just on his heels and ready to make the jump in 2022. Rodriguez made 23 starts last season between High A ball in Aberdeen and Double-A Bowie. Over these starts, Rodriguez pitched to an impressive 2.36 Earned Run Average (ERA) with a 9-1 overall record while striking out 161 batters in just 103 innings of work.
Will they be Ready for the Majors
As these young MLB prospects look to deliver some excitement for fans on the field, their high expectations also draw fans into looking to add them to their MLB baseball card collections. Luckily for the game and the fans, these are just a few of the highly anticipated prospects expected to light off fireworks in 2022.
Get ready for a new season…….play ball.