The risk of rushing prospects

Carlos Gomez is just one example of a top prospect who needed more time in the minors. Benny Sieu/USA TODAY Sports

If you've been following baseball in recent years, you are aware that a greater emphasis has been put on developing players from within. With most teams locking up stars before they hit the open market, you can't count on good players being available via free agency, which means you have to advance your own talent.

But for all the emphasis placed on developing players, I still see too many promoted to the majors too soon. Now, whether it's due to hype, impatience or some front-office politics, top prospects are ending up in the big leagues before they are ready, and both the player and the club are suffering for it.

Look around the majors and you can see all sorts of formerly hyped guys either struggling or back in the minors. A few names that come to mind are Aaron Hicks, Mike Moustakas and Jesus Montero.

We'll get back to those guys in a moment. The bad news for them is that their careers have stalled. The good news is that there is still hope. Just ask Carlos Gomez.