This article is part of our Farm Futures series.
For serious dynasty league owners, the start of Short-Season and Rookie league play is one of the best times of the year. We finally get to see what that shiny new toy looks like in game action. Between now and the end of the season, prospects from these leagues will emerge as top-400, top-200, and even top-100 prospects. It was this time last year when Royce Lewis, Keston Hiura, Jo Adell, Luis Robert, Drew Waters, Tirso Ornelas, Heliot Ramos, Calvin Mitchell, Jeisson Rosario, Jhailyn Ortiz, and Esteury Ruiz began putting together their resumes. Now all 11 of those hitters are top-60 prospects in dynasty leagues. If you are asleep at the wheel over the next two months, you will miss out on the next crop of exciting, toolsy teenage building blocks in leagues that allow in-season pickups.
So which players should you be keeping an eye on? I've done that work for you. What follows is a list of the top 117 hitters in Short-Season or Rookie leagues (I don't include pitchers in this article because most of you don't care about Rookie-level pitchers – just know that Francisco Morales is the short-season pitcher I'm watching most closely right now). I decided to put out the list a little earlier than I did last season, so there will not be many 2018 draftees included, because most have not been assigned to an affiliate. Some of these guys are already household