Every year, the final two months of the regular season marks the arrival of baseball’s top prospects.
For those teams still vying for a postseason berth, the timely promotion of an impact prospect may offer a much-needed boost to their lineup, starting rotation or bullpen.
A perfect example can be seen in the Orioles’ decision to promote then-19-year-old Manny Machado from Double-A to the major leagues at this time last season.
After debuting with the Orioles on August 9, Machado batted .262/.294/.445 with 18 extra-base hits and 26 RBI in 51 games while flashing Gold Glove-caliber defense at the hot corner. More significantly, the team posted a 33-18 record with him in the lineup and ultimately secured one of the two Wild Card spots in the American League.
Here’s a look at one near-big league ready prospect from each contender with the potential to influence the team’s success during the home stretch of the 2013 season.