After starting the season 5-11, the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox caught fire in the final month of the Cape Cod League season and stayed hot through the playoffs to win the league championship for the first time in seven years. Y-D completed a two-game sweep of Falmouth in the championship series with a come-from-behind 10-4 win in Game Two. The Red Sox erased a 4-2 deficit with six runs in the sixth inning, highlighted by Jordan Tarsovich’s three-run double.
Coaches and scouts generally agreed that there was less top-end talent than usual in the Cape this year, though the depth was still solid.
“I have to agree with the scouts who are saying the talent was down; it was definitely down this year,” longtime Chatham coach John Schiffner said. “It’s a combination of the teams signing more high school players, and the college coaches shutting down more of their position players and their pitchers.”
1. Walker Buehler, rhp, Yarmouth-Dennis (Jr., Vanderbilt)
After playing a crucial role in Vanderbilt’s run to the national championship, Buehler turned in one good outing for Team USA, then three strong regular-season outings for Y-D. He earned Cape League postseason co-MVP honors by going 2-0, 0.00 with 13 strikeouts in 15 innings in the playoffs, and he still sat comfortably at 92-95 mph for eight innings in his championship series win against Falmouth. That his stuff remained so electric after nearly 140 innings between the spring and summer allays concerns about his durability stemming from his wiry 6-foot-1 build. Buehler’s lack of physicality is the only significant knock against him, but he has a smooth delivery and arm action. He racks up groundball outs with his heavy fastball, which peaks at 96 mph, and he is a natural strike-thrower. He sometimes slows down his delivery a bit when he throws his changeup, but it has good fading action and projects as a solid-average to above-average pitch. Buehler throws both a curveball at 78-79 and a slider at 83-85; both show promise but need more consistency. The curveball flashes plus but can be below-average at times when his release point varies. He needs to do a better job staying on top of his slider for it to become a consistently average pitch, but his feel to spin his breaking stuff is encouraging.
2. Kyle Cody, rhp, Wareham (Jr., Kentucky)
After struggling through an injury-marred sophomore season, Cody finally started to harness his massive potential this summer, posting a 2.80 ERA and a 33-11 strikeout-walk mark in 35 innings for the Gatemen. At 6-foot-7, 245 pounds, Cody is an intimidating figure on the mound, and he works downhill with a 93-96 mph fastball with hard sinking life. He does it with minimal effort and commands his heater to both sides of the plate. Cody worked predominantly off his fastball this summer, which scouts liked, but he also needs to show more secondary stuff this spring. He rarely threw his 84-87 mph changeup, though he has some feel for it. His slider showed more power this summer than it did in the spring, ranging from 79-83 mph.
“He could use it for a strikeout, but what I liked about it is he could throw it first pitch for a strike,” Wareham coach Cooper Farris said. “That really gets a hitter screwed up, because they have to cheat a little bit to catch up to his fastball, but they can’t cheat when you throw that breaking ball in there: ‘Oh gosh, he’s got another pitch.’”
3. Cody Ponce, rhp, Brewster (Jr., Cal Poly Pomona)
Ponce came out of nowhere this summer to establish himself as a potential first-round pick in 2015. Like Kyle Cody, he is built like a workhorse (6-foot-6, 240 pounds), though his arm action is not as loose as Cody’s, and his fastball has a tendency to flatten out more. He needs to do a better job staying on top of his pitches and getting downward plane, but his arm strength and four-pitch repertoire are tantalizing. Ponce works comfortably at 90-94 and regularly touches 95-96. This summer he developed a promising cutter at 86-89 with sharp tilt when he throws it right. His 78-82 mph curveball projects as an average pitch as he learns to repeat it more consistently, and he is making progress with an 82-86 changeup against lefthanders, using it mostly as a strike pitch early in counts.
4. Gio Brusa, of, Brewster (Jr., Pacific)
Brusa ranked No. 177 on the BA 500 for the 2012 draft out of high school and was the highest-profile recruit ever for Pacific, where he has yet to emerge as a star through two seasons. His breakout finally came this summer, when he hit .322 with six homers for the Whitecaps, though his 31-4 strikeout-walk mark reveals that he still must refine his free-swinging approach.
Few college players in the 2014 draft class can match Brusa’s all-around tools package. He is an athletic, live-bodied 6-foot-3, 190-pound switch-hitter with average or better tools across the board. His best tool is his above-average power potential, especially from the left side, where he has better extension and a more fluid swing. He hits screaming line drives up the middle and has good balance in his lefthanded swing, and he shows some pop from the right side. Brusa is an average runner with a solid-average arm that should play at either outfield corner spot.
5. Ian Happ, of, Harwich (Jr., Cincinnati)
Happ ranked No. 2 on this list after his boffo 2013 summer, but moving from the infield to the outfield depresses his value a bit. But his calling card is his bat, and he continued to hit this summer, finishing at .329 with four homers and a league-best 12 doubles in 149 at-bats. A switch-hitter with a compact stroke, especially from the left side, Happ rips hard line drives to all fields, and many scouts project him as a plus hitter. He is also strong enough to drive balls out of the park, with solid-average or slightly better power. Happ is a hard-nosed, high-energy player whose aggressiveness translates to all aspects of the game. He is physically mature and has slowed down a step since last year, but he is still an above-average runner. He also has a 55 arm. He should hit enough if he winds up in left field, and some scouts still think he has a chance to play second base, though he lacks fluid infield actions.
6. Phil Bickford, rhp, Yarmouth-Dennis (So., TBD)
The unsigned No. 10 overall pick by the Blue Jays in 2013, Bickford showed less explosive stuff during his freshman year for the Titans than he had as a high school senior, often pitching with an average fastball. He still went 6-3, 2.13 in 76 innings in the spring, then moved into a relief role this summer, causing his velocity to spike. He worked comfortably in the 93-96 range with late life, and he pounded the strike zone relentlessly with his fastball, though sometimes he tends to leave it up in the zone. Loose and athletic, he repeats his delivery but still needs to improve his secondary stuff. Working out of the bullpen, he mostly used his fastball and power curveball at 79-81 mph, which showed signs of becoming a plus pitch. He gets around the pitch at times, however, and needs to tighten it. Bickford decided not to return to Cal State Fullerton for his sophomore year so that he could enter the 2015 draft, either at a junior college or out of independent ball. If he can maintain his premium fastball in a starting role, he could be drafted in the top 10 picks again in 2015.
7. Marc Brakeman, rhp, Hyannis (Jr., Stanford)
Brakeman started to find his stride down the stretch of his sophomore year for Stanford, then built upon that momentum in the Cape, where he posted a 47-7 strikeout-walk mark in 33 innings. Though not overly physical at 6-foot-1, Brakeman has a quick arm that generates 90-95 mph heat. His second pitch is a plus 81-83 changeup with late tumble, giving him a swing-and-miss pitch against lefthanded hitters. He also uses it against righties, and his 81-82 slider can be a third quality option when he stays on top of it, but the pitch is inconsistent.
8. Richie Martin, ss, Bourne (Jr., Florida)
Martin ranked second in the Cape League in batting (.364) behind fellow shortstop Kevin Newman. Martin is the more athletic of the two shortstops, with a pair of plus tools in his speed and arm strength. At times, scouts have thought his defensive actions showed some tightness, but he was generally more relaxed and fluid this summer and has a legitimate chance to stick at shortstop at the big league level. Offensively, Martin has an up-the-middle, line-drive approach and enough strength to rack up his share of doubles and triples. He gets in trouble when his swing gets too big; though he has a bit of raw power, he is better when he stays in the gaps.
9. Kevin Newman, ss, Falmouth (Jr., Arizona)
Newman hit .375 in the Cape last summer and .380 this year to become the first player in league history to win back-to-back batting titles. He walked twice as often as he struck out this summer, illustrating his ability to control the zone and make consistent contact from gap to gap. He still has a gangly frame and is primarily a singles hitter but should hit his share of doubles as he fills out. Newman is an average runner with average range and solid-average arm strength, and he is an instinctive defender at short, but he lacks standout tools for the position.
10. C.J Hinojosa, ss, Harwich (Jr., Texas)
Hinojosa stood out for his sterling play at the College World Series and continued to impress scouts in the Cape. His best assets are his savvy and confidence, which make his tools play up. He has a mature frame and slightly below-average speed, but his instincts give him adequate range at short, where his arm is above-average. He reads pitchers well and is a heady baserunner. Hinojosa has some lift in his swing and offers fringy power to the pull side.
11. Alex Young, lhp, Falmouth (Jr., Texas Christian)
Young has been a key fixture in TCU’s bullpen over the last two years, but he moved into a starting role for Falmouth and thrived, going 3-0, 1.50 with 28 strikeouts and just three walks in 30 innings. Though Young relies primarily on just two pitches, he has a starter’s delivery, arm action and feel for pitching. He has an innate ability to throw strikes with his 88-92 mph fastball and 76-82 slider, which usually rates as average and flashes plus. His slider has three-quarters break, and he can alter its depth and power, throwing it softer for a strike early in counts and throwing it harder when he needs a strikeout. Young’s fastball sits mostly at 90-91 but plays up a bit because it has some life and he commands it very well. At 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, Young has a durable frame, but he’ll need to develop a changeup to thrive in a starting role as a pro.
12. Steven Duggar, of, Falmouth (Jr., Clemson)
Scouts are a bit skeptical of the official 60-yard dash times recorded at the Cape League’s workout day at Fenway Park, but Duggar ran the fastest time of the day: a blistering 6.26 seconds. His speed doesn’t play as well in game action, as he needs to improve his jumps and routes in center field, but he stole 40 bases in 48 tries this year between the spring and summer. If Duggar can grow into his wiry 6-foot-2, 195-pound frame, he has a chance to become a legitimate five-tool prospect. He has some whip in his lefthanded swing and generates enough bat speed to hint at some power potential, but he seldom drives the ball with authority at this stage, instead spraying mostly singles to the middle of the field. He has a pronounced leg kick in his swing, which can negatively affect his timing. Still, Duggar hit .329 this summer and is a .297 career hitter at Clemson, so he has some feel for his barrel. He also offers a plus outfield arm that plays in center field or right.
“He’s still not in as much control as I’d like to see, but the tools are there, and the body,” a National League crosschecker said. “If he puts it together—which he might be, because he looked pretty good this summer—he could be a real speed/power combo.”
13. Chris Shaw, of/1b, Chatham (Jr., Boston College)
After swatting six homers and slugging .502 in a strong spring, the lefthanded-hitting Shaw led the Cape League with eight home runs and ranked second with 34 RBIs. As the centerpiece of a Chatham lineup loaded with lefthanded hitters, Shaw faced an endless parade of southpaws, and he gradually improved against them as the summer progressed, doing a better job staying closed and going the other way more often. He still has work to do with his approach, and some scouts aren’t convinced he can handle premium velocity, but he punishes mistakes and average fastballs. With a chiseled 6-foot-4, 235-pound frame, Shaw has plus or better power, and he will go as far as that tool carries him. He played first base as a freshman and right field this spring and summer, but he’s a poor runner and profiles best at first, though he has a solid arm.
14. Kyle Twomey, lhp, Orleans (Jr., Southern California)
Twomey’s easy delivery, projectable frame and uncommon ability to command his fastball got him drafted in the third round by Oakland out of high school, and helped him rank No. 11 on this list a year ago. He struggled in USC’s rotation as a sophomore but was better after a move to the bullpen, and his confidence continued to climb in the Cape, where he went 2-0, 2.23 with 39 strikeouts and 10 walks in 40 innings split between starting and relieving.
At 6-foot-3, 170 pounds, Twomey still needs to add strength to his wiry frame to help his stuff firm up more consistently. Scouts still rave about his clean delivery and arm action, and his fastball ranged from 87-92 mph this summer, occasionally bumping 94. His second pitch remains his 80-82 changeup, which has excellent arm speed and deception. He is working on a three-quarters slider at 76-79 mph, and it is making progress but still has a ways to go. He also mixes in a slow, loopy curveball at 68-72. Mastering a consistently functional breaking ball is key for Twomey’s development.
15. Eric Hanhold, rhp, Orleans (Jr., Florida)
Hanhold is still trying to harness his considerable talent. He ranked as the No. 2 prospect in the Northwoods League last summer, then posted a 4.20 ERA working mostly in relief this spring for Florida. He showed quality stuff in the Cape this summer, but he turned off some evaluators with his body language when adversity struck. He’ll need to improve his mound presence to carve out a key role on Florida’s loaded pitching staff next spring.
Hanhold does have a first-round arm and body (6-foot-5, 205 pounds). He sat comfortably at 90-94 mph this summer with heavy sink and downhill plane, and he flashed a solid-average to plus slider at 81-83, though other times it was more fringy. When it’s on, the slider has late depth, and he can command it to both sides of the plate. He also has some feel for a changeup with decent bottom. Hanhold has all the physical ingredients to become a marquee prospect if he can master his mental game.
16. Mikey White, ss, Brewster (Jr., Alabama)
Every scout seems to like White, even though all of them tend to point out that the 6-foot-1, 205-pounder doesn’t do anything that “wows you.”
“He brings it every day; he’s just pretty good across the board,” an AL crosschecker said. “He’s a stronger-bodied guy, not real nimble-footed. You’re getting a big leaguer, a guy you can win with. This guy can play baseball.”
White’s outstanding instincts translate to every phase of the game. He’s a below-average to fringy runner, but he has a knack for putting himself in position to make plays at shortstop, where he is very steady. His lack of standout range could cause him to move to second base eventually, but he has a solid-average arm and a quick release. Offensively, White has a compact righthanded stroke and a quiet, rhythmic approach. He regularly barrels up hard line drives from gap to gap and has occasional home run power.
17. Garrett Cleavinger, lhp, Falmouth (Jr., Oregon)
Cleavinger’s stuff jumped up this summer, causing some scouts to predict he could follow in the footsteps of Jacob Lindgren and Paco Rodriguez as a fast-moving power lefthanded reliever and rocket up draft lists next year. As recently as May against Oregon State, Cleavinger was sitting at 89-91 mph and mixing in a slow curveball, but he was a different animal this summer, working at 92-95 mph with his fastball and showing a hard, tight slider at 80-84. He has a deceptive, short arm action, and the ball explodes out of his hand, giving lefthanded hitters fits. His fastball has running life, and he is still learning to command it in the zone, but he did post an impressive 33-4 strikeout-walk mark in 15 innings this summer. He’s a reliever all the way, but he could make a big league impact soon.
18. Joe McCarthy, of, Harwich (Jr., Virginia)
At 6-foot-5, 215 pounds, McCarthy is a physical presence with surprising athleticism. He has consistently run plus times in the 60-yard dash and ran the sixth-fastest time of any player at the Cape League’s Fenway Park workout. He isn’t as quick from home to first but goes from first to third or second to home in a hurry. He’s also a solid defender with a fringe-average arm, making him a future left fielder in pro ball. He has a chance to hit enough to profile at the position, because he always manages to get his barrel on the ball. McCarthy wears out the middle of the field but needs to learn to pull the ball with authority. He has an upper-body swing, and if he can ever free up his lower half, he could start to hit for real power. Regardless, his hit tool could get him drafted in the top two or three rounds next year.
19. Kevin Duchene, lhp, Yarmouth-Dennis (Jr., Illinois)
Duchene has been a strike-throwing performer for two years at Illinois and was a key piece of Y-D’s run to the Cape League title this summer, going 3-3, 3.38 with 38 strikeouts and 12 walks in 43 regular-season innings. He threw a one-hit shutout against Orleans in a must-win playoff game, then earned the win in the championship clincher against Falmouth.
Duchene has added strength to his 6-foot-2, 205-pound frame since arriving at Illinois, helping his velocity climb from 83-85 as a freshman to the 87-90 range this summer. He has also added power to his curveball, which was a 66-71 mph looper two years ago and now ranges from 74-79. He can throw it soft as a get-me-over pitch or use it as an out pitch, and he isn’t afraid to back-foot it against righties. But his go-to putaway pitch is his 78-79 changeup, which rates as plus. Duchene has outstanding mound presence and does a good job repeating his mechanics despite a bit of a hook in the back of his delivery. He is a dogged strike-thrower and still has room to add strength.
20. Zack Erwin, lhp, Harwich (Jr., Clemson)
Erwin has been a key swingman for two years at Clemson, and he had a strong summer working mostly as a starter, going 2-2, 1.80 with 35 strikeouts and eight walks. Erwin lacks overpowering stuff, but he throws strikes with four quality pitches, giving him back-of-the-rotation upside in the big leagues eventually. At 6-foot-5, 190 pounds, Erwin is tall and lanky, and his 88-91 mph fastball plays up because of his downhill angle and his deceptive delivery. He also locates it well to both sides of the plate.
Erwin’s most advanced secondary pitch is a slightly above-average high-70s changeup with good arm speed and fade. He mixes in an average slider at 78-81 and a fringe-average curveball in the mid-70s, allowing him to keep both lefthanded hitters and righties off balance. Erwin has a fairly easy arm action and room to add strength to his skinny frame, giving him a chance to add a bit more velocity and improve his stock further.
21. Josh Sborz, rhp, Orleans (Jr., Virginia)
Sborz has shown flashes of great promise in each of his first two seasons at Virginia, but inconsistent command has held him back. Scouts don’t love his high-effort arm action and funky two-part delivery, which features a stab takeaway and inhibits his command. But his arm strength is undeniable. His fastball ranges from 90-95 mph, and his physical 6-foot-3, 220-pound build allows him to maintain his stuff.
Sborz has inconsistent but promising secondary stuff. He struggled to command his mid-70s curveball with big 12-to-6 break during the spring, so he shelved it until the summer. It flashed plus at times this summer, but it sometimes got bigger and showed less bite. He also throws a short mid-80s slider/cutter that is serviceable, but his 82-85 changeup is too firm. Sborz has the body and the potential four-pitch repertoire to start, but his delivery and lack of fine command might make him a better fit in a relief role.
22. Kal Simmons, ss, Chatham (Jr., Kennesaw State)
Chatham coach John Schiffner compares Simmons to former Cape Leaguer John McDonald, who carved out a big league career based on his defensive prowess.
“He’s one of the best fielding shortstops I’ve ever seen,” Schiffner said. “He has a good arm, his release is excellent, he can throw you out from the hole, and he comes in on the ball about as well as I’ve ever seen. His instincts on that short-hop ball are amazing. His range is very good to both sides—he stops on a dime, makes the throw from short center field. And his hands are amazing; he’s just gifted.”
Simmons’ defense will have to carry him, because his other tools are lacking. He is just a fringy runner but has savvy on the basepaths. A switch-hitter, Simmons does a better job staying inside the ball from the left side but has a bit more lift from the right side. He needs to add strength to his 6-foot-1, 195-pound frame and won’t ever be a power hitter, but he is strong enough to hit line drives from gap to gap. He’s also a good bunter, though he lacks the speed to use the drag bunt as a weapon often.
23. Kyri Washington, of, Wareham (Jr., Longwood)
Washington was the darling of the Cape League’s Fenway Park workout day, running a 6.51-second 60-yard dash and putting on an incredible power display during batting practice. But he hit just .204 with one homer and a 35-8 strikeout-walk mark in 93 at-bats for the Gatemen, raising serious questions about his feel for hitting.
“He’s got as good of tools as anybody, right up until the game starts,” an AL crosschecker said. “I want to like him; the BP was phenomenal. Unbelievable raw power, then the game starts, and it’s a couple (of) punchouts. At least he put himself on the map with the workout at Fenway. He definitely has some of the loudest raw tools in the Cape.”
Washington has quick hands, and the ball explodes off his bat when he makes contact. The righthanded hitter pulled everything when he arrived at the Cape, and the Wareham coaching staff worked with him on driving the ball to the opposite field more often. He also struggled mightily to recognize breaking balls early in the summer, often chasing balls that bounced in front of the plate, but his plate discipline improved somewhat over the course of the summer. At 6-foot-1, 215 pounds, Washington is still learning how to use his plus speed in the outfield, where he must improve his ability to read balls off the bat. His arm and defensive ability fit best in left field.
24. Garrett Williams, lhp, Chatham (So., Oklahoma State)
Williams ranked No. 66 on the BA 500 for the 2013 draft but opted for Oklahoma State over pro ball. He flashed tantalizing stuff during his uneven freshman year and similarly up-and-down summer in the Cape, but he is still learning to harness it.
“He’s still a project, but the stuff is electric,” Chatham coach Schiffner said. “He was getting better late (in the summer). Talk about a fastball with life—we couldn’t even call location with his fastball, just set up down the middle and let it run.”
Williams sat comfortably at 88-92 and touched 94 with his lively heater, but he needs to do a better job commanding it. When his 76-78 mph curveball was on, it was a wipeout pitch with sharp break, and he could back-door it to righties or buckle lefties’ knees with it. But he had inconsistent feel for both his curveball and his promising changeup, and he had a tendency to pitch up in the zone too often. Williams arrived at OSU as a two-way player, but his future is on the mound, and he could take off if he focuses exclusively on pitching going forward.
25. Justin Jacome, lhp, Yarmouth-Dennis (Jr., UC Santa Barbara)
Jacome has been a steady weekend starter for two years at UCSB, posting a 3.26 career ERA in 163 innings. He was a standout for Y-D’s Cape League title team, going 6-2, 1.55 in 52 innings between the regular season and playoffs. Jacome has the polish to eat up college hitters, but scouts think he’ll need to improve his stuff a bit to reach the big leagues, and his 6-foot-6, 222-pound frame suggests additional gains are possible.
At his best early in games, Jacome touched 92 mph this summer, but he worked mostly at 86-89 with good angle and command. He mixes in an 82-83 cutter and a fringy breaking ball in the 75-78 range that he can throw for strikes or back-foot to righties. He also threw a decent changeup to righties, but it will need refinement. Jacome intrigues scouts with his savvy, his frame, his easy arm action and smooth delivery, and if his velocity jumps a tick or two in the spring, he could become a premium draft pick.
26. Kolton Mahoney, rhp, Orleans (Jr., Brigham Young)
Mahoney returned from a two-year Mormon mission last summer, then went 6-6, 3.97 as a sophomore starter at BYU this spring. He was drafted by the Brewers in the 23rd round by the Brewers but didn’t sign. Mahoney then won Cape League pitcher of the year honors this summer, going 4-2, 1.79 with 61 strikeouts in 45 innings between the regular season and playoffs. At 22 years old, Mahoney is old for the Cape Cod League, and his age depresses his prospect stock a bit, but his arm is relatively fresh. And he is very mature emotionally, emerging as a clubhouse leader for Orleans.
Mahoney is also fairly polished and has a quality four-pitch repertoire, highlighted by a 90-94 mph fastball and a tight 80-84 slider that he uses for the bulk of his strikeouts. He throws a 75-77 curveball for strikes, often as a backdoor pitch against lefties, and he mixes in an 81-83 changeup with good arm speed and bottom. Mahoney gets ahead in counts and knows how to put hitters away.
27. Ryan Perez, lhp/rhp, Hyannis (Jr., Judson, Ill.)
Perez came out of nowhere and took the Cape Cod League by storm, posting a 1.98 ERA and a 39-13 strikeout-walk mark in 27 innings. He struck out three straight batters in the league all-star game—two of them with his left arm, and one with his right. He sat at 90-91 mph from both sides in that appearance.
“That was the first time I’d ever seen anything like that—the same stuff from both sides in the same inning,” an NL crosschecker said. “I had to look up where Judson was—I’d never heard of it. He’s a prospect.”
Perez is more than just a novelty. He is a legitimate top-five-rounds candidate as a lefthander, with a solid-average fastball that reaches 93 and a plus curveball in the 77-81 range with three-quarters break. He has excellent command of his breaking ball, showing the ability to alter its depth and velocity as the situation dictates. He can throw it for a strike or use it as a chase pitch. His stuff from the right side is usually not as firm; he sits at 87-90 and features a 75-80 breaking ball with less power and consistency than his lefthanded breaker. A team could conceivably let him pitch from both sides in pro ball, giving him additional value, but it is more likely that his future is as a lefthanded reliever.
28. Rhett Wiseman, of, Cotuit (Jr., Vanderbilt)
Wiseman had a quiet sophomore year but played his best late in the year and played a key role in leading Vanderbilt to the national title. He hit .261 in 21 games for Cotuit before breaking his forearm with two weeks left. Though his numbers were modest, Wiseman impressed Cotuit coach Mike Roberts for his developmental progress in his second summer with the Kettleers.
“He’s gone from an athlete in a baseball uniform to approaching becoming a really good baseball player,” Roberts said. “The thing that sets him apart is he plays every pitch. He never takes a pitch off, and he just does everything all out.”
Roberts said Wiseman’s arm strength and accuracy improved dramatically since last summer, and it drew average grades from scouts this year. He’s a solid-average to slightly above-average runner who gets good reads and takes good routes in the outfield, though he lacks the range for center field. He has also improved his basestealing acumen. Several scouts expressed concern that Wiseman might be a “tweener,” because he lacks the power for left field, where he fits best defensively. He does flash some power to the pull side when he sells out for it, but he is a better hitter when he hits line drives to all fields. He has a tendency to over-stride, but when he shortens his stride and maintains his balance, he has the bat speed to handle velocity and drive balls the other way. Wiseman’s tools aren’t huge, but his all-around package is intriguing.
29. David Thompson, 1b/3b, Orleans (Jr., Miami)
Thompson recovered from a 1-for-24 start to lead all Eastern Division hitters with a .331 average this summer, along with four homers and 10 doubles in 163 at-bats. The 6-foot, 200-pound Thompson’s calling cards are his strength and his bat. Multiple scouts described his swing as strength-oriented and questioned whether he has the elite bat speed to handle premium velocity, but he sees the ball well and drives it with authority. At times he gets pull-happy, but toward the end of the summer he did a better job driving balls to the right-center gap. Thompson was recruited to Miami as a quarterback, and has shown enough athleticism to play both infield corners during his college career, but he profiles best at first base, where he has good footwork and a solid arm. He is a below-average runner but not a baseclogger.
30. Andrew Stevenson, of, Yarmouth-Dennis (Jr., Louisiana State)
Stevenson hit .335 and played standout defense in center field during his breakout sophomore year at LSU, then hit .327 in his all-star summer in the Cape. He stood out to some scouts for his aggressive style of play and athleticism. Stevenson is a stellar defender in center field thanks to his plus speed and superb instincts, though his arm is below-average. His speed also plays on the basepaths, where he stole a league-best 21 bases in 24 tries this summer.
Stevenson’s unorthodox lefthanded swing has a lot of moving parts, but he showed a knack for driving balls into the gaps this summer, though he can get pull-happy at times. He takes competitive at-bats and puts the ball in play, but he lacks home run power.