As many baseball writers have noted, 2015 is a banner year for top prospects. After last weekend’s promotions of Byron Buxton and Francisco Lindor, nine of Baseball America’s preseason top 20 prospects have debuted this year, including each of the top four (Kris Bryant, Buxton, Addison Russell, Carlos Correa). That number is tied for the fourth-highest since BA started ranking prospects in 1990 (2010 was the most productive, with 11) — and more than three months remain in the 2015 season.
This trend partly reflects the fact that BA’s top prospects in 2015 were particularly green. Only three of this year’s top 20 had previously debuted (such players can be ranked if they still have rookie eligibility), resulting in more players who could get called up for the first time. In contrast, four of the top five prospects in BA’s 1990 rankings had already reached the major leagues.