Cleveland Guardians offseason outlook: starting rotation
Prospects on the Way in 2023
Daniel Espino is ranked as Cleveland’s top prospect by Baseball America and #15 overall in baseball according to MLB.com. He projects to be a top-of-the-rotation starter, and while he may not crack the Opening Day rotation, he is expected to debut in 2023 and the Guardians expect him to be a rotation anchor for years to come.
Certainly not as heralded as Espino, Tanner Bibee burst onto the scene and onto the prospect radar with a fantastic showing in 2022. He struck out 167 batters in 132 2/3 innings with a 2.17 ERA in the minors this year. His breakout propelled him onto MLB.com’s list of Top 100 prospects, coming in 99th overall. He may still not be getting the recognition he deserves, and with continued development he could contribute at the major-league level in 2023.
Prospects Justin Campbell and Peyton Bettenfield provide additional depth and insurance in 2023. Campbell pitches in the mid-90s, touching as high as 97 mph, while Battenfield, already 25 years old, projects more as a depth piece as a back-end starter with minor-league options, or a swing man.
The Guardians have a solid base to their rotation, and multiple ways they can upgrade this offseason with the goal of getting them over the hump to prepare for a deep playoff run in 2023.