Youngest Players By League On Opening Day 2022

Image credit: Francisco Alvarez (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

If history is any indication, a team aggressively moving a player up the minor league ladder serves as an excellent vote of confidence. It’s also often a sign of great things to come. 

For an example, let’s turn the clock all the way back to 2021. The youngest player in Triple-A was Wander Franco. A year later, he’s made his big league debut, was part of a playoff roster and looks like he has a chance to reach his lofty ceiling. 

The youngest player in the Double-A Texas League was Padres super prospect CJ Abrams. Opening Day this year? He’s in the big leagues. The same might have been true for Tigers outfielder Riley Greene—who was the youngest player in the Double-A Eastern League—were it not for a broken foot suffered late in spring training. Hunter Greene was the fifth-youngest player in the Double-A Southern League, and he dazzled this past week in his first big league start.

The youngest player in the High-A Northwest League was Mariners Uber-talent Julio Rodriguez. Guess where he spent his Opening Day. That’s right, with the big league team in Minnesota. 

The youngest player on any Opening Day roster in 2021 was Marlins righthander Eury Perez, who made the Low-A roster despite having never thrown a pro pitch. He crushed the competition in the Florida State League, and finished the year with five starts in the Midwest League. Instead of returning to High-A, the Marlins chose to jump Perez to Double-A, where he’s the youngest player at any classification above Low-A. 

Perez’s Double-A assignment is the first time an 18-year-old pitcher has begun the season in Double-A since Julio Urias began the 2015 season at Double-A Tulsa. Urias and Perez are the only two 18-year-old pitchers since 2010 to begin a season at Double-A. 

Below, Baseball America once again brings you the youngest players at each minor league level. Some names are familiar, others aren’t. Five leagues, including the National League, have Top 100 Prospects as their youngest player. The players who are at the top of the other leagues might just be on the Top 100 by this time next year. 

Also worth noting. Nationals star Juan Soto was the fifth-youngest player on any National League roster for Opening Day 2022. Soto is also tied for 100th on the active leaderboard for MLB home runs (99) and is 48th among all active players in walks (375).


American League
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Wander Franco, SS Tampa Bay Rays TB 21.10
2 Julio Rodriguez, RF Seattle Mariners SEA 21.27
3 Bobby Witt, SS Kansas City Royals KC 21.82
4 Luis Patino, RHP Tampa Bay Rays TB 22.45
5 Spencer Torkelson, 3B Detroit Tigers DET 22.62
6 Joe Perez, 3B Houston Astros HOU 22.66
7 Jarred Kelenic, LF Seattle Mariners SEA 22.73
8 Reid Detmers, LHP Los Angeles Angels LAA 22.75
9 Jo Adell, LF Los Angeles Angels LAA 23.00
10 Vladimir Guerrero, 1B Toronto Blue Jays TOR 23.06
National League
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 CJ Abrams, SS San Diego Padres SD 21.51
2 Geraldo Perdomo, SS Arizona Diamondbacks ARI 22.47
3 Hunter Greene, RHP Cincinnati Reds CIN 22.67
4 Spencer Strider, RHP Atlanta Braves ATL 23.45
5 Juan Soto, RF Washington Nationals WAS 23.45
6 Dylan Carlson, CF St. Louis Cardinals STL 23.46
7 Andre Pallante, RHP St. Louis Cardinals STL 23.55
8 Brusdar Graterol, RHP Los Angeles Dodgers LAD 23.62
9 Joan Adon, RHP Washington Nationals WAS 23.66
10 Keibert Ruiz, C Washington Nationals WAS 23.72
International League (AAA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Oswald Peraza, SS Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders NYY 21.81
2 Ivan Herrera, C Memphis Redbirds STL 21.85
3 Luis Garcia, SS Rochester Red Wings WAS 21.90
4 Nolan Gorman, 3B Memphis Redbirds STL 21.91
5 Gabriel Arias, SS Columbus Clippers CLE 22.11
6 Triston Casas, 1B Worcester Red Sox BOS 22.23
7 Mark Vientos, 3B Syracuse Mets NYM 22.33
8 Brice Turang, SS Nashville Sounds MIL 22.38
9 Grayson Rodriguez, RHP Norfolk Tides BAL 22.39
10 Roansy Contreras, RHP Indianapolis Indians PIT 22.42
Pacific Coast League (AAA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Miguel Perez, CF Tacoma Rainiers SEA 21.63
2 Alek Thomas, CF Reno Aces ARI 21.94
3 Ryan Weathers, LHP El Paso Chihuahuas SD 22.31
4 Cole Winn, RHP Round Rock Express TEX 22.37
5 Miguel Vargas, 3B Oklahoma City Dodgers LAD 22.39
6 Cesar Izturis, SS Tacoma Rainiers SEA 22.41
7 Heliot Ramos, CF Sacramento River Cats SF 22.59
8 Gregory Santos, RHP Sacramento River Cats SF 22.61
9 Eguy Rosario, 2B El Paso Chihuahuas SD 22.62
10 Ramon Perez, LHP El Paso Chihuahuas SD 22.77
Eastern League (AA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Francisco Alvarez, C Binghamton Rumble Ponies NYM 20.38
2 Orelvis Martinez, SS New Hampshire Fisher Cats TOR 20.38
3 Ezequiel Tovar, SS Hartford Yard Goats COL 20.69
4 Gunnar Henderson, SS Bowie Baysox BAL 20.78
5 Anthony Volpe, SS Somerset Patriots NYY 20.95
6 Ronny Mauricio, SS Binghamton Rumble Ponies NYM 21.01
7 Jose Tena, SS Akron RubberDucks CLE 21.05
8 Brayan Rocchio, SS Akron RubberDucks CLE 21.23
9 Daniel Espino, RHP Akron RubberDucks CLE 21.27
10 Liover Peguero, SS Altoona Curve PIT 21.27
Southern League (AA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Eury Perez, RHP Pensacola Blue Wahoos MIA 18.98
2 Jose Rodriguez, SS Birmingham Barons CWS 20.90
3 Taj Bradley, RHP Montgomery Biscuits TB 21.05
4 Michael Harris, CF Mississippi Braves ATL 21.09
5 Coleman Crow, RHP Rocket City Trash Pandas LAA 21.27
6 Felix Valerio, 2B Biloxi Shuckers MIL 21.28
7 Curtis Mead, 2B Montgomery Biscuits TB 21.45
8 Johan Lopez, SS Montgomery Biscuits TB 21.70
9 Ivan Armstrong, RHP Rocket City Trash Pandas LAA 21.70
10 Livan Soto, SS Rocket City Trash Pandas LAA 21.79
Texas League (AA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Jordan Walker, 3B Springfield (MO) Cardinals STL 19.88
2 Jaime Melendez, RHP Corpus Christi Hooks HOU 20.53
3 Julio Robaina, LHP Corpus Christi Hooks HOU 21.04
4 Malcom Nunez, 3B Springfield (MO) Cardinals STL 21.08
5 Andy Pages, RF Tulsa Drillers LAD 21.33
6 Dwayne Matos, RHP San Antonio Missions SD 21.42
7 Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP Wichita Wind Surge MIN 21.53
8 Corbin Carroll, OF Amarillo Sod Poodles ARI 21.63
9 Jordan Diaz, 3B Midland RockHounds OAK 21.65
10 Jonathan Ornelas, 3B Frisco RoughRiders TEX 21.87
Midwest (HiA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Owen Caissie, OF South Bend Cubs CHC 19.75
2 Brayan Buelvas, LF Lansing Lugnuts OAK 19.83
3 Petey Halpin, OF Lake County Captains CLE 19.87
4 Euribiel Angeles, 2B Lansing Lugnuts OAK 19.90
5 Yohendrick Pinango, LF South Bend Cubs CHC 19.92
6 Masyn Winn, SS Peoria Chiefs STL 20.05
7 Gabriel Rodriguez, SS Lake County Captains CLE 20.12
8 Ed Howard, SS South Bend Cubs CHC 20.19
9 Angel Martinez, 2B Lake County Captains CLE 20.20
10 Elly De La Cruz, 2B Dayton Dragons CIN 20.24
Northwest (HiA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Ronaldo Flores, C Eugene Emeralds SF 19.89
2 Luis Matos, OF Eugene Emeralds SF 20.19
3 Zac Veen, CF Spokane Indians COL 20.32
4 Kyren Paris, 2B Tri-City Dust Devils LAA 20.41
5 Noelvi Marte, SS Everett AquaSox SEA 20.48
6 Sem Robberse, RHP Vancouver Canadians TOR 20.49
7 Marco Luciano, SS Eugene Emeralds SF 20.58
8 Drew Romo, C Spokane Indians COL 20.60
9 Kyle Harrison, LHP Eugene Emeralds SF 20.66
10 AJ Vukovich, 3B Hillsboro Hops ARI 20.72
South Atlantic (HiA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Evan Carter, CF Hickory Crawdads TEX 19.68
2 Maikol Escotto, SS Greensboro Grasshoppers PIT 19.92
3 Thomas Saggese, SS Hickory Crawdads TEX 20.06
4 Nick Yorke, 2B Greenville Drive BOS 20.09
5 Bryan Ramos, 2B Winston-Salem Dash CWS 20.15
6 Luisangel Acuna, SS Hickory Crawdads TEX 20.15
7 Dariel Lopez, SS Greensboro Grasshoppers PIT 20.24
8 Coby Mayo, 3B Aberdeen IronBirds BAL 20.40
9 Cristian Gonzalez, SS Asheville Tourists HOU 20.53
10 Andrick Nava, C Jersey Shore BlueClaws PHI 20.57
California League (LoA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Victor Lizarraga, RHP Lake Elsinore Storm SD 18.36
2 Pedro Pineda, CF Stockton Ports OAK 18.59
3 Edwin Arroyo, SS Modesto Nuts SEA 18.62
4 Leonard Garcia, LHP Inland Empire 66ers LAA 18.67
5 Deyvison De Los Santos, 3B Visalia Rawhide ARI 18.80
6 Fernando Guanare, RHP Inland Empire 66ers LAA 18.80
7 Victor Juarez, RHP Fresno Grizzlies COL 18.80
8 Adrian Placencia, SS Inland Empire 66ers LAA 18.85
9 Alejandro Hidalgo, RHP Inland Empire 66ers LAA 18.88
10 Jackson Merrill, SS Lake Elsinore Storm SD 18.97
Carolina League (LoA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Hendry Mendez, LF Carolina Mudcats MIL 18.41
2 TJ White, OF Fredericksburg Nationals WAS 18.71
3 Carter Jensen, C Columbia Fireflies KC 18.77
4 Carson Williams, SS Charleston (SC) RiverDogs TB 18.79
5 Jose Corniell, RHP Down East Wood Ducks TEX 18.80
6 Moises Chace, RHP Delmarva Shorebirds BAL 18.83
7 Brady House, SS Fredericksburg Nationals WAS 18.84
8 Reggie Preciado, SS Myrtle Beach Pelicans CHC 18.90
9 Jheremy Vargas, SS Carolina Mudcats MIL 18.91
10 Alimber Santa, RHP Fayetteville Woodpeckers HOU 18.93
Florida State League (LoA)
Rk Player, Pos. Team ORG Age
1 Cristian Santana, SS Lakeland Flying Tigers DET 18.37
2 Carlos Marcano, RHP Lakeland Flying Tigers DET 18.75
3 Roberto Campos, OF Lakeland Flying Tigers DET 18.82
4 Jose Salas, SS Jupiter Hammerheads MIA 18.95
5 Kahlil Watson, SS Jupiter Hammerheads MIA 18.98
6 Andrew Painter, RHP Clearwater Threshers PHI 19.00
7 Chase Petty, RHP Daytona Tortugas CIN 19.01
8 Jeremy Rivas, SS Palm Beach Cardinals STL 19.10
9 Emmanuel Rodriguez, OF Fort Myers Mighty Mussels MIN 19.11
10 Dahian Santos, RHP Dunedin Blue Jays TOR 19.11


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