Investing heavily in rookie performers in any fantasy sport is certainly risky, especially in baseball. Consider that many of last season's expected first-year stars were anything but. Sure, Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu -- a rookie pretty much only in the technical sense, since the 27-year-old Cuban was actually very experienced in the sport -- was awesome, and New York Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom surprised even his own organization by seizing top NL rookie honors, but how many first-year players really carried fantasy owners from April until late September? Not as many as one would think.
Most of the hot rookies on the collective minds of fantasy owners at this time last year disappointed, led by Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts, Detroit Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos, Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Gregory Polanco and Seattle Mariners right-hander Taijuan Walker. New York Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka -- like Abreu, a professional import from another country and hardly raw -- was tremendous for half a season until his elbow gave out, and Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton stole the bases he was supposed to (but did little else), though we expected more. Wasn't Houston Astros outfielder George Springer supposed to be simply awesome right away? This game is tough for experienced veterans, let alone youngsters.
While colleague Keith Law ranks his top 100 prospects and you should certainly check that out, this blog entry is one man's opinion of the top 2015 rookies for fantasy purposes only.