20 Hottest Baseball Players to Look Out for This Year

20 Hottest Baseball Players to Look Out for This Year

After much anticipation, the MLB season is finally upon us and that means the hottest baseball players are doing what they do best – entertaining us with the gift of baseball. It’s a wonderful time to be an American when the baseball season is underway – a wonderful time, indeed. 

The baseball season officially began on April 7, 2022 with a matchup between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees – a game that was postponed. 14 teams played that day with the Cubs, Royals, Cardinals, Mets, Reds, Astros, and Diamondbacks all picking up victories. 

The St. Louis Cardinals had the most impressive performance on Opening Day 2022. They defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 9-0 with Adam Wainwright picking up the dub. Nolan Arenado, Tyler O’Neill, and Tommy Edman each hit a home run for the Cards in their opening day win.

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Who Are the Hottest Baseball Players Right Now? 

20 Hottest Baseball Players to Look Out for This Year
Keeton Gale / Shutterstock

Every year, baseball fans can’t wait to see the best and hottest baseball players take the field. They’ve been waiting in anticipation ever since the end of last year’s World Series, which came to a conclusion on November 2, 2021 when the Atlanta Braves won their first title since 1995.

Fans had to wait a week longer than originally anticipated due to the back-and-forth negotiations between the MLBPA and the MLB owners as they came to an agreement on a new CBA deal. Without that new deal, the lockout would’ve continued and the season would be in jeopardy. 

Instead, we have a full 162-game schedule to look forward to and we’ve already gotten a small taste of it so far! Things will only get better as the hottest baseball players continue to heat up and impress us with their play. In fact, let’s take a look at some of those hottest baseball players!

20. Luis Robert

Luis Robert is a 24-year old Cuban center fielder that plays for the Chicago White Sox. He made his debut on July 24, 2020 and is known for his ability to hit the ball and play defense. He finished last season batting .338 with 13 home runs, 43 RBIs, and 42 runs in just 68 games. 

He then had a successful Spring Training campaign, batting .361 and hitting three home runs, 12 RBIS, and seven runs in 14 games. He’s primed to have another good season as he continues his improvement. He’s already batting .385 (5 of 13) and has two stolen bases. 

19. Will Smith

No, not the Will Smith that just slapped Chris Rock. This Will Smith is a 27-year old American catcher that plays for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He made his MLB debut on May 28, 2019 and hit 15 home runs in 54 games his rookie season. He hit eight more in 37 games in 2020. 

Smith is coming off his first full season in the majors. He batted .258 with 25 home runs, 76 RBIs, and 71 runs in 130 games. He didn’t bat too well in Spring Training and has only played two games this year after being scratched from the lineup. Don’t worry, he’ll find his way back.

18. Shane Bieber

Shane Bieber is a 26-year old American starting pitcher that currently plays for the Cleveland Guardians. He made his major league debut on May 31, 2018 and has notched a 41-18 record since – though he hasn’t notched more than 10 wins since doing so in his first two seasons. 

After starting 19 games as a rookie and 33 games in his second year, Bieber has only made 19 starts in the past three seasons due to injuries. He was 15-5 when on the mound during that time. He already made one start this season and threw four strikeouts in 4.2 innings pitched. 

17. Corey Seager

Corey Seager is a 27-year old American shortstop that currently plays for the Texas Rangers. He made his major league debut on September 3, 2015 and had already hit 52 home runs by the end of the 2017 season. Injuries riddled his 2018 season before returning to form in 2019.

Seager has played extremely well the past two seasons, batting .307 and hitting 31 home runs, despite only playing 52 games in 2020 and 95 games in 2021. He’s with a new team for the first time in his career, but is already batting .462 with six hits in 14 plate appearances thus far. 

16. Alex Bregman

Alex Bregman is a 28-year old American third baseman that currently plays for the Houston Astros. He made his major league debut on July 25, 2016 and hit eight home runs in 49 games that year. He then hit 19 home runs in 2017, 31 home runs in 2018, and 41 home runs in 2019. 

Bregman hasn’t been himself the past two seasons, only hitting six home runs in 42 games in the COVID-shortened 2020 season and 12 home runs in 91 games last season. He’s looking to return to form in 2022, already batting .429 with two home runs and six RBIs in four games. 

15. Trea Turner

Trea Turner is a 28-year old American shortstop that currently plays for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He made his major league debut on August 21, 2015 and spent the next six and a half seasons with the Washington Nationals. During that time, he hit 93 home runs in 637 games. 

Turner was traded to the Dodgers midway through last season. He batted .338 and hit 10 home runs with the club in 52 games to end the season. This is his first full season with the team. Through three games in 2022, he is batting .231 with just three hits in 13 plate appearances. 

14. Bo Bichette

Bo Bichette is a 24-year old American shortstop that currently plays for the Toronto Blue Jays. He made his major league debut on July 29, 2019 and hit 16 home runs in just 75 games over his first two seasons. He’s coming off his first full season in the majors and it was a good one.

Bichette finished the 2021 season batting .298 with 29 home runs, 102 RBIs, and 121 runs scored. He led the American league and was second in the entire MLB with 191 hits. So far in 2022, he is batting .222 with just four hits in 18 plate appearances. Expect him to pick up steam. 

13. Aaron Judge

Aaron Judge is a 29-year old American right fielder that currently plays for the New York Yankees. He made his major league debut on August 13, 2016 and is regarded by many as one of the faces of the league. He won Rookie of the Year in 2017 after hitting 52 home runs. 

Between 2018 and 2020, Judge hit 63 home runs in just 242 games due to injuries. He played 148 games in 2021 and batted .287 with 39 home runs, 98 RBIs, and 89 runs scored. He’s still looking to get hot this season, only batting .250 with no home runs or runs batted in to speak of. 

12. Ronald Acuña Jr.

Ronald Acuña Jr. is a 24-year old Venezuelan outfielder that currently plays for the Atlanta Braves. He made his MLB debut on April 25, 2018 and won Rookie of the Year that season with a .293 batting average and 26 home runs in 111 games. He then had 41 home runs in 2019. 

After hitting lights out in the shortened 2020 season, Acuña Jr. continued his dominance in 2021 with 24 home runs in 82 games before tearing his ACL. He’s still recovering from the injury, but is currently expecting a May return and when that happens, he’ll likely return to dominant form.

11. Carlos Correa

Carlos Correa is a 27-year old Puerto Rican shortstop that currently plays for the Minnesota Twins. He made his major league debut on June 8, 2015 and spent the next seven years with the Houston Astros, where he won Rookie of the Year in 2015 and a World Series in 2017. 

In his seven seasons with the Astros, Correa batted .277 with 133 home runs, 489 RBIs, and 440 runs scored. He’s coming off a career-high 26 home runs and 104 runs scored in 2021. This season has been tough for him, batting just .125 after four games, but he’ll turn it around quick.

10. Corbin Burnes

Corbin Burnes is a 27-year old American starting pitcher that currently plays for the Milwaukee Brewers. He made his MLB debut on July 10, 2018 and finished the year with a 7-0 record, 2.61 ERA, and 35 strikeouts in 30 games. He had a down year in 2019, but played better in 2020.

Burnes is coming off his best season as a pro, finishing the 2021 campaign with an 11-5 record in 28 starts with a 2.43 ERA (led major leagues) and 234 strikeouts. He was the NL Cy Young Award winner. He has already played one game this season, striking out four in 5.0 innings. 

9. Wander Franco

Wander Franco is a 21-year old Dominican shortstop that currently plays for the Tampa Bay Rays. He made his major league debut on June 22, 2021 (last season) and finished with a .288 batting average, 18 doubles, seven home runs, 39 RBIs, and 53 runs in 70 games played.

After finishing third in Rookie of the Year voting, Franco had himself a decent Spring Training that included eight hits, four doubles, and three RBIs in 11 games. He’s off to a monster start this season, leading the MLB with nine hits through four games (16 plate appearances).

8. Gerrit Cole

Gerrit Cole is a 31-year old American starting pitcher that plays for the New York Yankees. He made his MLB debut on June 11, 2013 and spent the next five seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates. During that time, he went 59-42 with a 3.50 ERA and one All-Star appearance. 

Cole spent the next two seasons with the Astros, going 35-10 in that span and being named an All-Star each season. He’s currently in his third season with the Yankees and was the Cy Young runner-up last season. He has one start in 2022, but failed to notch a victory in 4.0 innings. 

7. Mookie Betts

Mookie Betts is a 29-year old American right fielder that currently plays for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He made his MLB debut on June 29, 2014 and spent the next six seasons with the Boston Red Sox. During that time, he won MVP, a World Series, and four All-Star appearances.

Betts is now in his third season with the Dodgers and has already won a World Series with the team – not to mention he was an MVP runner up that same season. He’s off to a rough start in 2022 after a down year last season, but you can expect him to return to form very soon. 

6. Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is a 23-year old Dominican-Canadian first baseman that currently plays for the Toronto Blue Jays. He made his debut on April 26, 2019 and recorded15 home runs, 69 RBIs, and 52 runs in his first season. He played just as well during the COVID 2020 season.

Guerrero Jr., the son of Hall of Fame power hitter Vladimir Guerrero Sr., is coming off his best season yet – which ended with 48 home runs and 123 runs scored (led the major leagues in both). He’s off to another good start, batting .333 with four RBIs and three runs so far in 2022.

5. Jose Ramirez

Jose Ramirez is a 29-year old Dominican third baseman that currently plays for the Cleveland Guardians. He made his major league debut September 1, 2013 and has spent his entire career in Cleveland. He had his breakout season in 2016 batting .312 with 11 dingers and 76 RBIs. 

Since then, he has hit 145 home runs, 425 RBIs, and scored 528 runs in 804 games. He had an impressive Spring Training with two home runs, five runs, and five RBIs in 12 games and is off to a hot start in 2022 with a .375 batting average, five RBIs, and three runs in four games. 

4. Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper is a 29-year old American right fielder that currently plays for the Philadelphia Phillies. He made his debut on April 28, 2012 and spent the next seven seasons with the Nationals before signing with the Phillies. During that time, he won Rookie of the Year and MVP.

Harper is now in his fourth season in Philadelphia and things have gone great. He hit 35 home runs in 2019, 13 home runs in the shortened 2020 season, and 35 again last season en route to his second MVP award. Things have been atrocious this season, but he’ll turn it around for sure. 

3. Mike Trout

Mike Trout is a 30-year old American center fielder that currently plays for the Los Angeles Angels. He made his major league debut on July 8, 2011 and has spent his entire 12-year pro career with the team. He’s a Rookie of the Year, three-time MVP, and eight-time Silver Slugger.

Trout is coming off a season that saw him only play 36 games, which was a shame because he had already hit eight home runs and was batting .333 in those 36 games. He’s starting a little slow in 2022 with just three hits in 15 plate appearances, but he does have his first home run. 

2. Shohei Ohtani

Shohei Ohtani is a 27-year old Japanese starting pitcher and designated hitter that currently plays for the Los Angeles Angels. He made his major league debut on March 29, 2018 and won the Rookie of the Year award that season with 22 home runs and a 4-2 record in 10 starts. 

Ohtani is coming off his best season in the MLB, which ended with a 9-2 record in 23 starts (156 strikeouts). He also hit 46 home runs, 100 RBIs, 103 runs, and led the major leagues with eight triples. He is having a very rough start to the 2022 season, but that’s bound to change soon. 

1. Juan Soto

Juan Soto is a 23-year old Dominican outfielder that currently plays for the Washington Nationals. He made his major league debut on May 20, 2018 and was second in Rookie of the Year voting with 22 home runs. He then hit 34 home runs in 2019 and 13 more in 2020. 

Soto had another good year last season, finishing with a .313 batting average, 29 home runs, 95 RBIs, 111 runs scored, and leading the major leagues with 145 walks. He’s off to a slow start in 2022 with a .222 batting average, one RBI, and two runs in five games, but has a home run. 

More of the Hottest Baseball Players Today

With most MLB teams 4-5 games into the season (as of April 10, 2022), we’re already seeing some players emerge as some of the hottest baseball players this year. Byron Buxton leads the league in dingers with three and Oscar Mercado leads the league in RBIs with eight.

Wander Franco and Steven Kwan each have nine hits through four games, five players have already hit three doubles, 12 players have hit a triple (no one has hit multiple yet), four players have multiple stolen bases, and three players are currently tied for the league lead with six runs. 

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On the mound, we only have one pitcher with multiple victories – relief pitcher Steven Wilson has a 2-0 record in two games played for the San Diego Padres. Carlos Rodon leads the MLB with 12 strikeouts, while Taylor Rogers and Jordan Romano lead the league with three saves.

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