MLB REPORT: Forecasting the Future: Identifying Each Team’s Leading Prospect for 2026…..

Forecasting the Future  Identifying Each Team’s Leading Prospect for 2026.

Who will emerge as the top prospects in 2026? MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Prospects list and our team Top 30 lists are in constant flux, updated multiple times per year, with replacements as players graduate. This trend seems to be accelerating, especially with eight of the top 10 prospects on the Top 100 having 2024 Estimated Time of Arrival (ETAs).

ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 02: Atlanta Braves right fielder Ronald Acuna Jr. #13 is congratulated by his teammates after scoring during the MLB game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Atlanta Braves on August 2, 2023 at TRUIST Park in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

We engage in the challenging task of projecting who’s next, even among those who aren’t yet ready for the big leagues. So, why not attempt to anticipate who will ascend to the pinnacle of the prospect rankings in two years’ time? Below, we highlight a player for each team whom we believe will be their organization’s top prospect before the commencement of the 2026 season. This selection includes some familiar names among prospects, with 13 current members of our new Top 100 being featured. Undoubtedly, several more will become household names over the next couple of years.

How can we be so confident? Two years ago, we identified a prospect who could skyrocket up the charts in 2024. Out of those picks, 10 players currently grace our Top 100, and one, Elly De La Cruz, has graduated to the majors. That’s 11 out of 30, boasting a .367 average, which could land us in Cooperstown.


Blue Jays: Arjun Nimmala, SS
Nimmala, ranked as MLB Pipeline’s No. 11 prospect in the 2023 Draft, slipped to 20th overall due to some concerns regarding swing-and-miss tendencies. In this scenario, Toronto’s coaches and coordinators have two years to address these issues during Nimmala’s journey into professional baseball. The other facets of his game are certainly promising. Nimmala exhibits plus raw power, and his defensive skills suggest he can hold his own at shortstop. Considering he just turned 18 in October, he has plenty of time to ascend to Top 100 status.

Orioles: Enrique Bradfield, Jr., OF
Predicting the longevity of a college hitter from a prominent program like Vanderbilt on prospect lists in 2026 might be uncertain, but given the Orioles’ depth, we’re taking the gamble. Bradfield’s 80-grade speed will be an asset on both offense and defense — on the basepaths, where he went 25-for-27 in stolen base attempts during his professional debut last summer, and in center field. He doesn’t necessarily require power, but the extent of his impact will determine the ceiling for this 2023 first-rounder.

Rays: Xavier Isaac, 1B (MLB No. 58)
The 2022 29th overall pick has already displayed notable progress in terms of athleticism and agility, earning him the top spot in our first-base rankings, and this could just be the beginning. Isaac showcased his power with 19 home runs between Single-A and High-A in his first full season, and he possesses the raw power to hit even more as he continues to develop. By 2026, he could be a 30-homer threat in the Tampa Bay system and on the cusp of breaking into St. Petersburg.

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