Spring training can get kind of boring, right?
The game’s best pitchers are held back, and its best position players don’t often take the games seriously. It’s more like a televised health club than competitive athletics.
I get it, of course. After months off, position players are just looking to get a feel for their swings and timing in the field. The best pitchers are held back because there’s no worse feeling than watching an ace hurt his arm in spring training.
But there’s still reason to watch. Baseball’s top prospects provide that.
There isn’t a question as to whether baseball’s best minor league talent will be promoted to the major leagues. But the timing of it certainly matters—especially to the prospects themselves.
In the era of arbitration, sooner is always better for baseball’s best prospects. Just ask Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, who didn’t break camp with the team in 2015 because the organization wanted to ensure it had an extra year of team control, so he filed a grievance.
But in the interest of—to put it bluntly—money, baseball’s prospects will grind out spring training games like they’re in a pennant race. OK, maybe that’s hyperbole. But you get the point.
They’re all going to try pretty hard in spring training to crack the 25-man roster. Which of them could be successful?