Professional athletes usually hit their peak years around 27 years old. Their performance then starts to decline as they reach their mid-30s.
Every so often, however, a group of young, talented players bursts onto the scene already at the top of their game. Major League Baseball is currently experiencing this takeover.
While Minor League Baseball is filled with budding superstars just waiting for the opportunity to show off their skills, several players under 25 years old are already making an impact at the highest level.
Its a good thing, too, because MLB needs a little flare.
At 24 years old, Braves second baseman Ozzie Albies already has four years of MLB experience under his belt. He was selected as an All-Star in 2018 and was a Silver Slugger Award winner in 2019.
So far in his young career, Albies is batting .279/.330/.473. In 2019, he posted an astonishing .994 fielding percentage to lead all players at his position. He also recently signed a seven-year $35 million extension with the Braves.
Toronto Blue Jays 22-year-old shortstop Bo Bichette has already proven he’s ready to be one of the faces of Major League Baseball. Since entering the league in 2019, the Brazilian-American is already in the record books.
Not only is he the first player in MLB history to record 10 extra base hits in his first nine games, he’s also the first shortstop in the modern era to reach base six times, swipe two bases, and hit a home run in a single game.
Although it has been more than a decade since the New York Yankees last appeared in the World Series, the team hopes 24-year-old second baseman Gleyber Torres is the catalyst for change.
In just 309 games in his young career, Torres has been selected as an All-Star twice and has already slugged 65 home runs. His current career slash line sits at .271/.340/.493.
Boston Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers is on pace to be one of the league’s greatest player’s at the hot corner. Although he’s only four years into his professional career, he’s already played a key part in a World Series title.
The 2018 champion has averaged 279/.332/.498 over his first four years in the league and is primed to become one of the leaders on a storied and historic franchise. Devers is already considered a hop-tier third baseman.
Having just celebrated his 22nd birthday, San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. has already shown why he’s one of the most exciting players to watch in Major League Baseball.
Equipped with an explosive bat, quick glove, and strong arm, the Dominican infielder already plays like a veteran. In 2020, Tatis hit .277/.366/.571 with 50 runs and 17 home runs. He finished fourth in MVP voting in the NL.
At just 21 years old, Dominican outfielder Juan Soto led the Washington Nationals to their first World Series title in franchise history in 2019. By the way, he’s only played in 313 professional games.
During the same year, Soto was named to the All-MLB Second Team and the received Silver Slugger Award. In 2020, he became the National League Batting Champion. This is only the beginning for the 22-year-old phenom.
The Atlanta Braves are certainly set for the future, thanks to Ozzie Albies and 23-year-old outfield Ronald Acuna Jr. In order to see how bright this Venezuelan ballplayer’s future is, look no further than his accomplishments and accolades.
Acuna Jr. and his young contemporaries are the future of Major League Baseball. Take note.