With the 2021 Major League Baseball season underway, all of the game's most exciting players are now on display for all to see.
We recommend paying special attention to young guys who haven't broken all the way out yet. And since every team has at least one such guy, we've identified which of your club's youngsters has the most untapped upside.
These are guys who are:
We'll break 'em down division by division, starting in the American League East and ending in the National League West.
On the 26-man roster
Age-26 or younger
Not already stars, a la Juan Soto, Ronald Acuna Jr., Fernando Tatis Jr., Gleyber Torres and so on
American League East
Baltimore Orioles: 1B Ryan Mountcastle (Age 24)
As they're several years into their rebuild, the Orioles' roster is now unsurprisingly loaded with 20-something players. And more are on the way, including our No. 7 prospect: catcher Adley Rutschman.
Yet it's Ryan Mountcastle, our No. 67 prospect, who has the most upside for 2021. He tallied a .333/.386/.492 slash line with five home runs in 35 games last year, mainly courtesy of the club's best hard-hit rate. With more of that this season, he can make a run at the AL Rookie of the Year.
Boston Red Sox: CF Alex Verdugo (24)
Even setting aside Rafael Devers—who made good on his tremendous potential back in 2019—the Red Sox still have a lot to like in the youth department. Bobby Dalbec, for example, has teased potential as a prolific slugger since making his debut last August.
But don't forget about Alex Verdugo. His offense has been on an upward trajectory, and in his defensive toolbelt are good jumps and a dangerous arm. After sneaking into the fringes of the AL MVP race in 2020, he has All-Star potential in 2021.
New York Yankees: LF Clint Frazier (26)
It doesn't help us that the Yankees' 26-man roster mostly consists of veterans who've been around the block a few times. For that matter, nor does it help that Gleyber Torres has already been an All-Star twice and that Clint Frazier broke out last year.
Still, some might be skeptical of Frazier given that he only played in 39 games en route to his 150 OPS+ in 2020. But it's a good sign that he showed excellent patience and even busted out some opposite-field power. If he can maintain those abilities, all he needs for continued success in 2021 is good health.
Tampa Bay Rays: LF Randy Arozarena (26)
It's arguably cheating to single out Randy Arozarena as the Rays' most promising youngster. He isn't exactly obscure after he broke, well, every record in last year's playoffs.
It's nonetheless worth clarifying that Arozarena was the real deal last year. He's obviously not going to maintain a .333/.406/.745 slash line, but his peripheral stats from 2020 suggest that his true offensive quality was somewhere in the Jose Abreu range. It'll be an upset if he's not a Rookie of the Year finalist.
Toronto Blue Jays: 1B Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (22)
The Blue Jays have young players beyond Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio, but that trio is rightfully front and center in the popular consciousness. All three of them could be All-Stars this year.
Even if he's thus far the most unproven of them, Guerrero gets our vote as the most intriguing player of the three. He posted elite marks for strikeout rate and exit velocity in 2020, and he's now in good shape and coming off a .421 average in spring training. Such things make him a dark-horse MVP candidate.