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Jeremy.Tuch    ORIGINAL GONGSTER

The MLB's New Kids on the Block - Part 2

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Last time, we got to know 5 up and coming prospects from the top 100 prospects list, who might make some noise this season. 

Today, we have 5 new rookies who are this season's top contenders for rookie of the year. Let’s get to it!

5. Hunter Renfroe - OF San Diego Padres (MLB.com rank 42)

Renfroe made his major league debut in late September, not giving him much time to make an impact. But that didn’t stop him from putting on a display and leaving us wanting more. He had 7 extra base hits in just 11 games, and became the first player in Petco Park history to land a homer during play on the roof of the Western Metal Supply building. He does have some holes in his swing, and can strike out a bunch, but the power plays are unmatched. He also has a plus arm and a solid glove from the outfield.

Season debut: Opening Day
Fearless prediction: 140 Games, .240 BA, 30 HR, 30 2B, 5 SB. ROY Odds: 2.5/10

4. Josh Bell - 1B Pittsburgh Pirates (MLB.com rank 27)

Bell started his major league career off with a bang, hitting a grand slam in just his second in the big leagues. It’s hard to follow up something like that, but Bell has been doing a good job of proving that to be no fluke. Bell has proven that he has a very good approach at the plate, walking more than he struck out in the big leagues (very unusual for a young player), and still producing runs at a solid rate. In a young lineup filled with talent, expect this switch hitter to be a huge addition to the Bucs.

Season debut: Opening Day
Fearless prediction: 130 Games, .290 BA, 15 HR, 25 2B, 3 SB. ROY Odds: 4/10

3. Alex Reyes - RHP St. Louis Cardinals (MLB.com rank 6)

Reyes missed the first 50 games of the season last year with a marijuana suspension, but showed that he was worth the wait when he eventually made it to the big leagues. He pitched in 12 games (starting 5), and struck out 52 hitters in 46 innings. Scouts love his fastball, which sits in the upper 90’s and can hit 100+ at times, and it pairs nicely with a deadly curveball and a changeup that’s developing. He has front line starter and will look to stick around in the big leagues for a full season to show what he’s got.

Season debut: Opening Day
Fearless prediction: 25 Starts, 150 IP, 10-7 W/L, 3.10 ERA, 150 K’s, 1.30 WHIP ROY Odds: 5/10

2. Dansby Swanson - SS Atlanta Braves (MLB.com rank 4)

The former number 1 overall pick by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2015 was traded very quickly after his draft year, in an inexplicable deal with Atlanta for pitcher Shelby Miller. Swanson has already made it to the show, and is proving that the D-Backs made a huge mistake. He has very good line-drive contact, and will settle into fence clearing power as he gets acclimated to big-league pitching. His glove and speed are also big pluses, giving him great range at shortstop. The sky's the limit for Swanson.

Season debut: Opening Day
Fearless prediction: 150 games, .290 BA, 20 HR, 25 2B, 20 SB. ROY Odds: 8/10

1. Andrew Benintendi - OF Boston Red Sox (MLB.com rank 1) 

Last year, Benindenti got into 34 games for the Sox, slashing a solid .295/.359/.476, while flashing some great leather out in left field. The 22 year old is slated to be the opening day left fielder for Boston, which gives him the daunting task of standing in front of Fenway’s Green Monster every day. But a storied franchise like the Red Sox wouldn’t give him this position if they didn’t think he could hang. He has very quick hands at the plate, giving him great ability to hit the ball all over the field, and generate solid power. He has above average speed, and we already touched on his glove. He’s got the tools to add to a near-elite outfield for the Sox.

Season debut: Opening Day
Fearless Prediction: 135 games, .275 BA, 18 HR, 30 2B, 20 SB. ROY Odds: 7/10

If you didn't have a chance to read part 1 this series, go ahead and jump over to The MLB's New Kids on the Block - Part 1

Jeremy.Tuch
Jeremy is a HUGE sports nut. Most notably, an authority on the Devils and Yankees within his circles. He's a unique mix of analytical and creative, with the ability to not filter his thoughts at all. This allows him to create informative, yet fun, articles for pretty much everyone.
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© GONG, Inc. All rights reserved