Top prospects load up Futures Game rosters

Bichette, Rodgers headline U.S. squad; Tatis, Mejia lead World

Fernando Tatis Jr. and Bo Bichette -- two of the game's best shortstop prospects -- are going to D.C. (Joshua Tjiong, David Monseur/

By Sam Dykstra / | July 6, 2018 1:05 PM

Minor League stars of all stripes will be headed to Washington, D.C. a week from Sunday.

Thirty of's top-100 prospects make up the U.S. and World rosters participating in this year's Futures Game, to be held at 4 p.m. ET on July 15 at Nationals Park.

Futures Game rosters: U.S. Team | World Team

The U.S. roster is decidedly the more loaded of the two with 19 of's top 100 prospects. The squad is particularly potent in the infield, where it could have a rotation of top-100 stars at shortstop (Bo Bichette, Brendan Rodgers, Carter Kieboom), third base (Ke'Bryan Hayes, Ryan Mountcastle) and second base (Keston Hiura, Bichette, Rodgers). But the outfield is also deep with Jo Adell, Alex Kirilloff, Kyle Lewis and Taylor Trammell all selected to patrol the grass and provide plenty of thump to the U.S. lineup. 

On the pitching side, the U.S. will provide plenty of punch with Mitch Keller, Hunter Greene, Kyle Wright, Matt Manning and Justus Sheffield all expected to parade out of the bullpen next Sunday. No. 9 overall prospect Forrest Whitley --'s top overall pitching prospect -- was also selected to the U.S. roster, but his participation is in doubt after he left his Double-A Corpus Christi start early Thursday after experiencing an issue with his left oblique.

All that said, the World side is not lacking in firepower of its own.

The most notable World player is No. 3 overall prospect Fernando Tatis Jr., who has a chance to form a double-play partnership with his fellow Padres farmhand Luis Urias at shortstop and second base, respectively. No. 15 prospect Francisco Mejia should play a pivotal role as the World catcher, especially after hitting .455 over 24 games in June with Triple-A Columbus. 

The World's lone top-100 arm is A's left-hander Jesus Luzardo (No. 20 overall), who was born to Venezuelan parents in Peru but moved to Florida when he was young. The rest of the pitching staff includes Phillies No. 11 prospect Enyel De Los Santos, who leads the International League with a 1.89 ERA for Triple-A Lehigh Valley, and Marlins No. 3 prospect Jorge Guzman, who routinely throws in the triple-digits and could really stand out in a shorter Futures Game stint.

World team infielder Luis Garcia will represent the host Nationals, alongside Kieboom, and becomes the first Futures Game participant to be born in the year 2000.

The game's top two prospects -- Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Eloy Jimenez -- would have given the World roster an even brighter shine, but both are on the disabled list. Guerrero hasn't played since June 6 due to a left-knee injury while Jimenez just went on the DL Monday with a strained hip muscle. Guerrero's Hall of Fame father and namesake will be at the Futures Game, however, as the World hitting coach alongside manager David Ortiz. Five-time All-Star Torii Hunter will manage the U.S. team. 

The U.S. beat the World, 7-6, at last year's Futures Game in Miami. Rays right-hander Brent Honeywell was the MVP. The U.S. leads the all-time series, 12-7, since the event began at Fenway Park in 1999, and has won seven of the last eight contests.

The complete U.S. and World team rosters can be found at those links. 

Sam Dykstra is a reporter for Follow and interact with him on Twitter, @SamDykstraMiLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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