Keep an eye on these 5 MLB players you haven’t heard of yet

JUPITER, FL - MARCH 10: Lewis Brinson
JUPITER, FL - MARCH 10: Lewis Brinson /
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SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JULY 21: Franchy Cordero
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JULY 21: Franchy Cordero /

Franchy Cordero

Cordero is destroying the Cactus League this spring. He has a superb 1.179 OPS. That being said, he recently suffered a groin injury, and manager Andy Green says there are no plans to rush him back. This could mean not being able to start the season on the MLB roster which could hurt him.

However, he has demonstrated a clear ability to hit the baseball this spring, something that should translate to the MLB season if he is given the opportunity. He finished in the top 55 in both exit velocity and barrels (quality contact measurement) per plate appearance last season. A reason for concern though is the .400 BABIP he has last season, something FanGraphs says is relatively unsustainable, implying he was relatively lucky. Frighteningly, this luck only translated to .228 batting average.

I think that his raw ability to hit the baseball, demonstrated by exit velocity and barrels, are a reason we can overlook this. While spring training is a very small sample size, it was a continuation of what he did in the Dominican Winter League this offseason. He was able to have a .393 OBP in 211 at bats. The guy can play.

Cordero may not get all of the playing time he needs to start the year as the Padres will be trying to contend, but when given the opportunity, he has shown he can hit big league pitching and will do it this year.