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These 10 prospects will make an impact soon

May 25, 2018

Another week, another slew of exciting Major League debuts.It's hard not to get jaded and expect every prospect to homer in his first game, like Willy Adames did, or even on the first pitch of their first start (we see you, Juan Soto!). Guys raking right out of the gate

Another week, another slew of exciting Major League debuts.
It's hard not to get jaded and expect every prospect to homer in his first game, like Willy Adames did, or even on the first pitch of their first start (we see you, Juan Soto!). Guys raking right out of the gate (Exhibit A: Austin Meadows and his .440/.440/.880 line with three homers) seems almost par for the course.
While it can't possibly continue at this rate, we don't want any fantasy owner to be caught napping. Adames and Soto were both on last week's Fantasy Top 10, so we've updated the list with some new names, guys who aren't necessarily widely known prospects, but who could produce if and when they get their first callup to the big leagues.

1. Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B, Blue Jays (Previous rank: 1)
It seemed like Guerrero would be the first teenager to get called up from Double-A, but Soto beat him to the punch. No one questions if he could handle big league pitching now, as Guerrero is up to .427/.479/.707 with nine homers and 46 RBIs in the Eastern League; perhaps the only concern is his ability to play third in Toronto, and what to do with Josh Donaldson. Toronto should find a place for his bat sooner rather than later.
2. Alex Reyes, RHP, Cardinals (Previous rank: 6)
It's pretty safe to say that Reyes is ready to return from his Tommy John surgery rehab, right? In two starts over the last week, one in Double-A and one in Triple-A, the hard-throwing right-hander struck out 26 and allowed just two hits in 14 2/3 IP.

3. Ryan McMahon, 1B, Rockies (Previous rank: 2)
While McMahon's first stint in the bigs didn't go so well, it's not like Ian Desmond has warmed up at all (.181/.234/.374) at first base in Colorado. Meanwhile, McMahon is finding his groove, hitting .333 with three homers and 10 RBIs in his last 10 games.
4. Eloy Jimenez, OF, White Sox (Previous rank: 5)
I used to shy away from putting young hitters in Double-A on this list. No more. Jimenez now has a .323/.367/.586 line thanks to his .372 May. He would be an upgrade over anyone manning an outfield corner in Chicago currently.
5. Nick Senzel, 3B, Reds (Previous rank: 3)
A bout with vertigo has knocked Senzel down this list some, but he is resuming baseball activities. As he gets back into full swing, look for him to move back up. The Reds should give his tools a shot as soon as he has his feet back under him.

6. Michael Kopech, RHP, White Sox (Previous rank: 4)
In the last week, Kopech has shown exactly why fantasy owners should be excited about a callup (17 K's and just six hits allowed in 12 IP over two starts) and why the White Sox might be hesitant (6 walks).
7. Willie Calhoun, OF, Rangers (Previous rank: 7)
We knew it was only a matter of time until Calhoun started hitting. The power hasn't even shown up yet in full force, but it's encouraging to see him hitting .322 this month. His defensive limitations make it a bit tougher to find time for him in Texas, but he can force his way into that lineup with continued success at the plate.
8. Austin Riley, 3B, Braves (Previous rank: 9)
The youth movement is Atlanta is working, and some would say ahead of schedule. Riley's up in Triple-A and mashing (.321/.383/.584 overall; .303/.365/.470 in 17 games with Gwinnett). How long before the Braves decide to add this 21-year old to the mix?

9. Christin Stewart, OF, Tigers (Previous rank: Unranked)
Stewart has always shown power (58 homers in past two years) and patience (career .364 OBP) in the Minors. This year, he's cut down his strikeout rate while not sacrificing any power, as he leads the International League with 11 home runs. Meanwhile, the Tigers' primary left fielder, JaCoby Jones, has a .675 OPS.
10. Kolby Allard, LHP, Braves (Previous rank: Unranked)
The Braves have already brought up a top hitting prospect (Ronald Acuna Jr.) and a pitcher (Mike Soroka), and we have Riley on the list this week. So let's balance it with another top arm. Allard won't help your strikeout totals, but he is in the International League's Top 10 in both ERA and WHIP.
Dropped out: Willy Adames, SS, Rays (Previous rank: 8); Juan Soto OF, Nationals (Previous rank: 10)

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB Pipeline. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.