Young players have become more prominent in Major League Baseball. Properly valuing farm players' talents, timetables and opportunities will help rotisserie and head-to-head managers win their fantasy baseball leagues.
16. Jorge Soler, OF, Chicago Cubs
Soler eclipsing other youngsters
Soler, a Cuban defector with serious talent, just turned 21 years old and is another prospect that the Cubs will look to as they rebuild their roster under new management. Chicago signed him to a nine-year deal around $30 million last summer, and he hit a combined .299 with five home runs and 25 RBIs in the Arizona Rookie League and at Single-A Peoria last year.
There is a reason the Cubbies invested heavily in this Cuban prospect: The 6-foot-3, 205-pound physical specimen boasts incredible power for such a raw talent; he didn't play for two years after defecting from Cuba. Still, he isn't one-dimensional; he has speed, nice bat speed and impressive plate discipline for a player without much game-time experience. His body is major league-ready right now, but he could use some mentoring and seasoning defensively in right field. He has the skill set to become a serious power threat in the majors in time.
Despite pressure around the organization to put this kid on the fast track to The Show, the Cubs will be patient, as they should be. Front office executive Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer know a thing or two about successfully developing homegrown talent down on the farm, too, so Soler should be in good hands. He'll need it, since he is incredibly raw and probably needs the repetitions more than any other blossoming prospect in the minors. When he's ready, though, Soler could easily become an outfielder that can produce similar to what Yoenis Cespedes has done for fantasy baseball owners in short time.
On to No. 17
Top fantasy baseball prospects - AL 1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-20 | 21-25
Top fantasy baseball prospects - NL 1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-20 | 21-25
About Keith Hernandez
Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.
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