With the 2020 season underway, we examine 10 rookies who could contribute this season and might be worth drafting. Keep in mind. Many of these players saw time last season but did not play a full season.
The prospects are not ranked on ability but rather which are most likely to play in the bigs right away and contribute.
1. Luis Robert, OF, White Sox: Robert is a five tool player who projects to have the upside of a Ronald Acuna Jr. He can hit for power, steal bases and play quality defense in the outfield. He is the centerpiece of the White Sox rebuild.
2. Dustin May, SP, Dodgers: May pitched in 14 games last season, starting four of them. He went 2-3 with an ERA of 3.63. He figures to have a prominent role in the Dodgers rotation this season as a forth or fifth starter. Given how good the Dodgers offense is going to be this season, May is worthy of middle to late draft pick because he could conceivably win 10 to 13 games and strike out a lot of batters.
3. Gavin Lux, 2B, Dodgers: The Dodgers were reluctant to part with Lux in any trades this off season and it is hard to blame them. Lux hit 26 home runs and drove in 76 runs for the Dodgers in the minors last season. He hit a combined .347. There will be high expectations and pressure on Lux but there is no denying his ceiling is high and he could be a major fantasy producer particularly by season’s end.
4. Carter Kieboom, 3B/SS, Nationals: Kieboom struggled when he was called up to the big club last season but he still managed to hit .303 with a combined 18 home runs last season between Fresno and Washington. The Nationals are banking on the 21 year old being their starting third basemen. There is no question the talent of there. Kieboom just needs to put it together mentally. If he does, he can be a good late fantasy option.
5. Jo Adell, OF, Angels: Adell is a terrific athlete that has proven he can hit for average and power. He isn’t a home run hitter per say but he does get on base and he could have cross category value from a fantasy standpoint. I would either draft Adell as a stasher in a dynasty league or wait to see if he makes the club out of spring training before deciding whether or not to draft him in a standard league.
6. Jesus Luzardo, SP, A’s: Luzardo went 10-5 with a 2.88 ERA in the minors last season. He has terrific stuff and profiles as a front of the rotation starter. The will more than likely break camp with the A’s and be in their rotation which makes him an appealing late round option.
7. Nick Madrigal, 2B, White Sox: Madrigal will start the start in the minors but don’t be surprised if he is called up to the big club by May. The fourth pick of the 2018 draft can hit for average, wreck havoc on the bases and play gold glove caliber defense. He will be an impact player in the big leagues sooner than later. He is a worthy stash, especially in dynasty leagues.
8. Nate Pearson, SP, Toronto Blue Jays: Pearson throws gas. Plain and simple. He needs to refine his stuff however. Command can be an issue at times and that’s when he gets walk happy. He is prone to giving up the long ball as well. Pearson profiles as a starter but the Blue Jays May ease him in by using him out of the bullpen. That’s where he has fantasy value.
9. A.J Puk, SP, A’s: Puk is nasty, plain and simple. We got a glimpse of what the left hander can do last season. The question is, do the A’s put into their rotation this season? Between triple A and the A’s last season, Puk went 6-1 while striking out 13.09 batters per nine innings. The 6-7 lefty is flat dominant and a mid-round pick off he makes the A’s out of spring training.
10. MacKenzie Gore, SP, Padres: Gore is one of the top three pitching prospects in all of baseball. He a plus fastball, a terrific array of off speed pitches and an easy deliver. His command is a strength. It remains to be seen if he makes the Padres rotation out of spring training. If San Diego is in it come May or June, I expect Gore to get called up and that is when you should pick him up. Gore at the very least is a stash candidate. Especially in 12 leagues and dynasty leagues.