The future of baseball is looking unusually bright in Chicago. 

Both the Chicago Cubs and the Chicago White Sox are among the group of MLB franchises that are on the verge of cementing their status as perennial contenders. What follows is a look around the league at five teams whose window of opportunity is about to open up. 

The idea behind this list is to focus on emerging contenders, which means that clubs that have been in playoff contention in recent seasons weren’t eligible to land a spot. Three primary factors were taken into consideration during the ranking process:

  • The strength of the team’s minor league system
  • The composition of the big league roster
  • Whether or not the team has the money to keep its core intact

Two of the spots in the top five go to the Chicago clubs, but there’s also room in the rankings for a couple of rising stars in the National League East.

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