MLB Rumors: Cardinals-Blake Snell buzz, Red Sox target sluggers, Jackson Holliday debut

  • Jackson Holliday earns spring invite from Orioles
  • Red Sox targeting multiple power hitters
  • Could the Cards target Blake Snell late in free agency?

Blake Snell, San Diego Padres
Blake Snell, San Diego Padres / Sean M. Haffey/GettyImages
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MLB rumors: Jackson Holliday earns spring training invite from Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles are home to the MLB's top farm system. The crown jewel is 20-year-old shortstop Jackson Holliday, who ranks as the No. 1 prospect on MLB Pipeline. Most 20-year-olds are nowhere close to their MLB debut, but Holliday is a unique talent — and he could get a real shot to crack the Orioles' opening day roster.

Baltimore invited 20 non-roster players to spring training, with Holliday among them. FanGraphs currently projects Holliday as Baltimore's opening day starter at shortstop. He will have to earn it through competition, but Holliday's production in the minors last season was proof that the former No. 1 pick is way ahead of the curve.

Holliday split last season between all four minor-league levels for Baltimore. He played 18 games for Triple-A Norfolk, where he slashed .267/.396/.400 with two home runs and 19 RBI in 75 AB. He also drew 16 walks (compared to only 17 strikeouts), showcasing plate discipline well beyond his years.

The Orioles are all-in on winning the World Series after their magical 101-win season in 2023. Their trade for Corbin Burnes signifies a level of financial commitment the organization is simply not known for. That could make life more difficult on Holliday, as the Orioles won't put him on the field unless he's ready to help them win games. On the other hand, there's a strong chance for Holliday to prove his worth at a position of need — all while establishing himself early on as the MLB's next great infielder.