Jonathan Mayo

Top prospects vying for big league jobs

A look at which up-and-comers are locks, contenders and longshots for roster spots

Top prospects vying for big league jobs

With Opening Day right around the corner, teams are quickly filling up spots on the 25-man rosters they will break camp with. Many of the game's top prospects have moved down to prepare for the Minor League season, some of whom were competing for big league jobs.

Some are still hanging around in Major League camp, sewing up jobs, still competing for them or, at the very least, trying to make the decision difficult.

Top 100 Prospects

Which prospects still in camp fit into which category of competition for roster spots? provides this updated primer.


Corey Seager, SS (LAD No. 1, MLB No. 1): The Dodgers' shortstop job has been Seager's since his successful late-season audition last year. A sprained left knee may delay him a little, but the Dodgers are still hopeful he'll be ready for Opening Day.

Callis on Seager, Dodgers

Byron Buxton, OF (MIN No. 1; MLB No. 2): Buxton needs just two at-bats to graduate off prospect lists, and all signs point to him getting them on Opening Day as the Twins' starting center fielder. Look for him to learn from his struggles in 2015.

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Steven Matz, LHP (NYM No. 1, MLB No. 15): Nothing like a World Series start to get you ready for your rookie season, right? Matz still qualifies for that National League Rookie of the Year Award, and he is penciled in as the Mets' No. 4 starter.

Dylan Bundy, RHP (BAL No. 2): The odds were always good that Bundy would make the team, given that he is out of options. But the Orioles have been thrilled with how well the former first-rounder has thrown this spring. He'll fill a bullpen role for now, but if the stuff continues to come back, seeing him back in a rotation isn't out of the question.

Bundy on his return

Trevor Story, SS (COL No. 11): With a Jose Reyes suspension looming, there was a competition for Opening Day shortstop, with Story and Cristhian Adames the prime candidates. Hitting .378 with six homers in Cactus League play has sewn up the spot for Story.

Bridich on Story, Adames

Others:  Tyler Naquin, OF (CLE No. 9); Miguel Castro, RHP (COL No. 15); Drew VerHagen, RHP (DET No. 13); Ross Stripling, RHP (LAD No. 16); Michael Feliz, RHP (HOU No. 10); Tyler White, 3B/1B (HOU No. 13); Tyler Goeddel, OF (PHI No. 18); Tony Zych, RHP (SEA No. 17); Matt Bowman, RHP (STL No. 21); Yadiel Rivera, SS (MIL No. 23), Joey Rickard, OF (BAL No. 17)

Naquin informed of promotion


Peter O'Brien, C/1B/OF (ARI No. 9): O'Brien's bona fides as a power hitter are well-established, and he's homered five times this spring. The D-backs would love to get that bat into the lineup, but the only question is where. He's played mostly outfield this spring, with no time behind the plate. If A.J. Pollock isn't ready to go, perhaps that opens a spot, albeit temporarily.

Statcast: O'Brien's home run

Others: Socrates Brito, OF (ARI No. 4); Mychal Givens, RHP (BAL No. 4); Colin Rea, RHP (SD No. 6); Travis Jankowski, OF (SD No. 7); Mike Wright, RHP (BAL No. 10) Austin Barnes, C (LAD No. 12); Luis Perdomo, RHP (SD No. 12); Trayce Thompson, OF (LAD No. 15); Jabari Blash, OF (SD No. 16); Scott Schebler, OF (CIN No. 16); Jake Cave, OF (CIN No. 19); Reymond Fuentes, OF (KC No. 19); Cristhian Adames, SS (COL No. 28); Todd Cunningham, OF (LAA No. 28)

Long shots

Jose Peraza, 2B/OF (CIN No. 5; MLB No. 71): He's seen time at shortstop, second and center field this spring as the Reds try to figure out if a super-utility role will work. Peraza will stick only if the organization feels it can get him regular ABs.

Others:  Brandon Drury, 2B/3B (ARI No. 3); Manny Banuelos, LHP (ATL No. 9); Mikie Mahtook, OF (TB No. 10); Yorman Rodriguez, OF (No. 13); Tyler Wilson, RHP (BAL No. 18); Ryan Dull, RHP (OAK No. 22);

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for Follow @JonathanMayo on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.