MLB Free Agency: Jesus Montero and 10 Top Prospects Preventing Big Splashes

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MLB Free Agency: Jesus Montero and 10 Top Prospects Preventing Big Splashes
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Looking ahead to 2011, many teams will look to improve their roster via free agency or by making a major trade during the off-season.

Teams like the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are looking to sign a major free agent and have their fan bases excited for this upcoming season.  However, the secret to a team's success isn't always found by signing the biggest free agent or trading for a six-time All-Star.

The difference between a championship and missing the playoffs can be found in the minors.  For some teams, the future of the franchise lay in the hands of the top-rated prospects.  For others, general managers look to use their highly-touted prospects as trade bait to reel in a big name to improve their roster or, in some cases, simply to boost ticket sales.

While everyone has an opinion about where Cliff Lee will end up and speculated which team Carl Crawford will sign with, these guys aren't the only players making headlines during this offseason.

Let's not forget about the other guys

So from Triple-A last season to the majors in 2011, here are some big-name prospects who will be more than difference makers in 2011. Because of the talent and expectations they are bringing to the Show, these top prospects are preventing general managers from making big splashes this offseason at their respective positions.   

Sit back, relax, enjoy.

The winter meetings are set to begin.

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