Baseball America

College Top 100 Draft Prospects By The Numbers

Baseball America introduced its College Top 100 prospects list for the 2014 class last month, and today we’ll take a look at the list by the numbers, comparing it to previous iterations and providing a statistical look at the prospects.

Putting this list in historical context provides further evidence that the 2014 draft is a pitching-heavy draft. Pitchers headline the top of the crop: Eight of the top 12 players in the class and 60 of the Top 100 are pitchers, which is the second-highest total of the last five years (behind last year’s list). Lefthanders, in particular, are in abundance, comprising four of the top 15 players in the class (North Carolina State’s Carlos Rodon, Evansville’s Kyle Freeland, Texas Christian’s Brandon Finnegan and Hartford’s Sean Newcomb). The 18 lefties are the most of the last five years.

This class also offers a number of position players who profile as legitimate pro prospects on the mound, as five position players in the top 50 (Cal State Fullerton third baseman Matt Chapman, Cal State Fullerton first baseman/third baseman J.D. Davis, Oregon State outfielder Dylan Davis, South Carolina third baseman Joey Pankake and Virginia third baseman Nick Howard) have fastballs that can touch at least the mid-90s.

The strength of the high school class also leans pitching, as this year’s Top 100 had the most pitchers (48) of the last four years.

After a fallow year for college catchers, when one backstop ranked in the Top 100 (Andrew Knapp, 90), six made this year’s list, which matches the five-year average.

For a statistical look, the group was broken into pitchers and hitters. All listed statistics below are career numbers. The numbers profiled for pitchers are walks per nine innings, strikeouts per nine, strikeout-walk ratio and ERA, and an average (mean) for each category is provided. The highest and lowest 15 percent of each statistical category (which equates to nine pitchers) are highlighted, with the highest in green and the lowest in red.

Each position player’s triple-slash line is provided, as are his strikeout and walk percentages (per total plate appearances), isolated slugging (ISO) and batting average on balls in play (BABIP). With a smaller group of players, the six highest and lowest in each category are also highlighted.

A few highlights:

• Louisiana State righthander Aaron Nola (No. 5) has superb control. The average walks per nine for the group is 3.64, but Nola sports a 1.04 career mark. His strikeout-walk ratio (8.5) is more than three times the group average (2.5).

• North Carolina State shortstop Trea Turner is in the top seven in all three slash categories (.351/.443/.503) with more walks (13.4 percent) than strikeouts (11.7 percent). Turner’s top-of-the-scale speed enables his ability to get on base (he has the fourth-highest BABIP at .383), and wreak havoc once on base, with 51 more steals (87) than any other junior (Kansas State senior Ross Kivett has 56 steals but has played three seasons).

• Indiana catcher/first baseman Kyle Schwarber’s plus-plus raw power translates to game action, as the strong-bodied lefthanded hitter posted the highest isolated slugging percentage (.248) despite playing in a conference that suppresses offense. He also controlled the strike zone, as he had both the sixth-highest walk rate (13.1 percent) and sixth-lowest strikeout rate (11.1 percent).

• Many of the top position players in the class who have plus power potential have seen that power translate to game action. Oregon State outfielder Michael Conforto (.223), Indiana first baseman Sam Travis (.210) and Virginia outfielder Derek Fisher (.205) all rank in the top 10 in isolated slugging.

• Small sample size caveats firmly apply, as Virginia first baseman/outfielder Mike Papi has the fewest plate appearances of any hitter on the list (238), but Papi was a supreme performer as a sophomore, excelling in every aspect offensively. The lefthanded hitter showed unparalleled control of the strike zone after posting the highest walk rate (18.9 percent) with the third-lowest strikeout rate (10.5 percent). He also had the second highest isolated slugging (.238) of any hitter on the list despite playing his home games in the ACC’s most pitcher-friendly ballpark. His numbers that come from contact were buoyed by the highest BABIP (.403) of any hitter, which is unlikely to recur, but he rarely struck out, walked frequently and hit for power.

 

COLLEGE TOP 100 HITTERS
Rk. Name PA AVG OBP SLG SB BABIP BB rate SO rate ISO SO/BB
3 Trea Turner, ss, North Carolina State 591 .351 .443 .503 87 .383 13.4% 11.7% .152 0.9
7 Michael Conforto, of, Oregon State 562 .338 .443 .561 7 .368 11.6% 14.9% .223 1.3
8 Bradley Zimmer, of, San Francisco 423 .287 .373 .427 22 .323 7.8% 14.7% .140 1.9
10 Derek Fisher, of, Virginia 505 .290 .390 .495 12 .348 9.9% 20.0% .205 2.0
14 Matt Chapman, 3b/rhp, Cal State Fullerton 451 .285 .380 .413 7 .317 10.2% 12.9% .128 1.3
16 Kyle Schwarber, c/1b, Indiana 551 .333 .423 .581 13 .336 13.1% 11.1% .248 0.8
18 Max Pentecost, c, Kennesaw State 465 .290 .369 .402 8 .329 9.2% 12.7% .112 1.4
19 Taylor Sparks, 3b/1b, UC Irvine 383 .303 .348 .503 9 .365 4.4% 21.9% .200 4.9
20 J.D. Davis, 1b/3b/rhp, Cal State Fullerton 387 .286 .377 .416 16 .326 11.6% 16.0% .130 1.4
21 Dylan Davis, of/rhp, Oregon State 461 .300 .341 .456 13 .335 5.4% 14.5% .156 2.7
24 Grayson Greiner, c, South Carolina 468 .261 .351 .409 5 .294 11.5% 16.2% .148 1.4
26 Scott Heineman, of, Oregon 377 .253 .345 .366 19 .308 9.0% 19.1% .113 2.1
28 Casey Gillaspie, 1b, Wichita State 556 .287 .415 .481 6 .308 17.3% 14.0% .194 0.8
29 Alex Blandino, 3b, Stanford 386 .280 .354 .485 6 .298 7.5% 16.6% .205 2.2
32 Brian Anderson, 2b/3b/of, Arkansas 406 .310 .429 .444 8 .374 13.8% 17.0% .134 1.2
38 Greg Allen, of, San Diego State 574 .305 .391 .375 36 .360 9.6% 14.1% .070 1.5
39 Mike Papi, of/1b, Virginia 238 .381 .517 .619 6 .403 18.9% 10.5% .238 0.6
40 Joey Pankake, 3b/rhp, South Carolina 560 .287 .371 .436 10 .309 10.7% 12.3% .149 1.2
41 Ross Kivett, 2b, Kansas State 764 .323 .409 .413 59 .359 9.6% 9.7% .090 1.0
42 Austin Byler, 3b/1b, Nevada 407 .313 .410 .493 7 .374 8.8% 19.4% .180 2.2
43 Nick Howard, 3b/rhp, Virginia 278 .328 .365 .440 7 .378 5.8% 15.8% .112 2.8
44 Aramis Garcia, c, Florida International 462 .298 .362 .474 1 .335 7.8% 17.7% .176 2.3
47 Branden Cogswell, ss, Virginia 366 .316 .448 .418 14 .359 14.8% 9.8% .102 0.7
50 Sam Travis, 1b, Indiana 570 .317 .408 .527 8 .330 11.9% 11.9% .210 1.0
51 Michael Suchy, of, Florida Gulf Coast 408 .272 .354 .387 12 .336 9.3% 21.3% .115 2.3
53 Brandon Downes, of, Virginia 418 .318 .401 .535 9 .390 10.0% 20.8% .217 2.1
59 Connor Joe, c/1b, San Diego 427 .299 .399 .436 3 .332 11.0% 14.1% .137 1.3
60 Chris Marconcini, 1b/of, Duke 464 .291 .390 .513 16 .334 10.8% 17.2% .222 1.6
65 *Mark Laird, of, Louisiana State 279 .307 .371 .344 6 .351 8.2% 11.1% .037 1.3
67 Boo Vazquez, of, Pittsburgh 416 .332 .417 .441 5 .372 11.1% 11.1% .109 1.0
68 Rhys Hoskins, of, Sacramento State 463 .320 .378 .489 2 .373 7.6% 19.0% .169 2.5
78 Hunter Cole, of, Georgia 466 .290 .376 .442 11 .366 11.8% 22.7% .152 1.9
79 Nick Torres, of, Cal Poly 472 .307 .369 .478 6 .340 6.4% 15.5% .171 2.4
81 Dante Flores, 2b/of, Southern California 271 .289 .371 .392 6 .366 8.9% 20.3% .103 2.3
82 Mason Robbins, of, Southern Mississippi 246 .317 .358 .406 2 .345 6.1% 11.0% .089 1.8
88 Brett Austin, c, North Carolina State 600 .267 .341 .362 19 .321 10.7% 17.8% .095 1.7
89 Kevin Kramer, ss/3b, UCLA 445 .279 .372 .358 10 .329 8.3% 14.8% .079 1.8
90 Chris Mariscal, ss, Fresno State 476 .269 .323 .336 5 .346 5.7% 21.2% .067 3.7
96 Dustin DeMuth, 3b, Indiana 796 .335 .392 .441 25 .396 6.2% 15.6% .106 2.5
97 Austin Cousino, of, Kentucky 561 .288 .396 .465 29 .324 9.1% 15.2% .177 1.7
Average 459.98 .303 .387 .449 13.8 .346 9.9% 15.6% .147 1.8

Pitchers

COLLEGE TOP 100 PITCHERS
Rk. Name IP BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB ERA
1 Carlos Rodon, lhp, North Carolina State 247 3.13 11.62 3.71 2.33
2 Jeff Hoffman, rhp, East Carolina 184 2.93 6.8 2.32 3.37
4 Tyler Beede, rhp, Vanderbilt 173 4.94 8.9 1.80 3.23
5 Aaron Nola, rhp, Louisiana State 216 1.04 8.79 8.45 2.42
6 Luke Weaver, rhp, Florida State 139 2.59 10.29 3.97 3.37
9 Kyle Freeland, lhp, Evansville 184 2.35 7.53 3.20 4.45
11 Michael Cederoth, rhp, San Diego State 162 5.33 9.50 1.78 4.22
12 Nick Burdi, rhp, Louisville 59 3.51 11.59 3.30 2.59
13 Brandon Finnegan, lhp, Texas Christian 141 4.15 9.06 2.18 3.32
14 Matt Chapman, 3b/rhp, Cal State Fullerton
15 Sean Newcomb, lhp, Hartford 72 4.63 11.5 2.48 3.75
17 Erick Fedde, rhp, UNLV 186 2.95 7.21 2.44 3.77
20 J.D. Davis, 1b/3b/rhp, Cal State Fullerton 46 1.96 5.09 2.60 3.13
21 Dylan Davis, of/rhp, Oregon State 10 9.00 9.00 1.00 6.30
22 Matt Imhof, lhp, Cal Poly 149 3.14 7.61 2.42 2.84
23 Andrew Suarez, lhp, Miami 89 2.02 5.87 2.91 4.35
25 Jordan Brink, rhp, Fresno State 60 3.75 9.75 2.60 3.90
27 Chris Oliver, rhp, Arkansas 36 3.5 8.75 2.50 3.00
30 Dillon Peters, lhp, Texas 127 2.98 7.09 2.38 2.34
31 Zech Lemond, rhp, Rice 112 2.89 8.28 2.87 2.17
33 Brandon Woodruff, rhp, Mississippi State 53 4.42 8.83 2.00 3.06
34 Pat Connaughton, rhp, Notre Dame 92 4.79 6.75 1.41 2.45
35 Sam Coonrod, rhp, Southern Illinois 144 4.31 7.63 1.77 4.44
36 Chad Sobotka, rhp, South Carolina’Upstate 68 5.16 10.46 2.03 2.91
37 Jordan Foley, rhp, Central Michigan 128 5.48 8.09 1.48 4.57
40 Joey Pankake, 3b/rhp, South Carolina
43 Nick Howard, 3b/rhp, Virginia 103 2.36 7.78 3.30 3.15
45 Daniel Mengden, rhp, Texas A&M 158 1.82 7.69 4.23 2.62
46 Parker French, rhp, Texas 144 2.69 4.75 1.77 2.75
48 Ben Smith, lhp, Coastal Carolina 150 4.56 8.52 1.87 2.58
49 Jace Fry, lhp, Oregon State 96 3.47 5.16 1.49 2.62
52 Wyatt Strahan, rhp, Southern California 107 4.96 5.3 1.07 2.19
54 Scott Squier, lhp, Hawaii 119 3.63 7.64 2.10 3.48
55 Spencer Turnbull, rhp, Alabama 143 2.25 7.5 3.33 4.41
56 Jake Reed, rhp, Oregon 214 3.03 5.55 1.83 3.20
57 Lukas Schiraldi, rhp, Texas
58 Colin Welmon, rhp, Loyola Marymount 173 2.03 6.76 3.33 3.17
61 James Norwood, rhp, Saint Louis 61 3.69 8.56 2.32 3.10
62 Jacob Lindgren, lhp, Mississippi State 84 2.68 9.54 3.56 3.86
63 A.J. Vanegas, rhp, Stanford 114 4.82 7.5 1.56 2.92
64 John Curtiss, rhp, Texas 64 3.52 6.75 1.92 3.52
66 Ben Wetzler, lhp, Oregon State 262 3.13 6.97 2.23 3.16
69 Benton Moss, rhp, North Carolina 167 3.07 9.43 3.07 2.91
70 Chandler Shepherd, rhp, Kentucky 111 2.68 5.84 2.18 3.32
71 Logan Jernigan, rhp, North Carolina State 87 6.52 9.00 1.38 4.03
72 Sam Howard, lhp, Georgia Southern 108 4.08 9.08 2.23 5.50
73 Jalen Beeks, lhp, Arkansas 41 1.54 6.15 3.99 2.20
74 Adam Ravenelle, rhp, Vanderbilt 22 5.73 7.36 1.28 2.86
75 Jordan Ramsey, rhp, UNC Wilmington 170 2.81 7.25 2.58 3.12
76 Matt Troupe, rhp, Arizona 74 5.23 11.31 2.16 3.41
77 Daniel Gossett, rhp, Clemson 175 3.96 9.15 2.31 3.34
80 David Lucroy, rhp, East Carolina 72 5.25 10.25 1.95 2.50
83 Austin Davis, lhp, Cal State Bakersfield 26 5.54 9.35 1.69 6.58
84 Chris Ellis, rhp, Mississippi 53 3.23 7.64 2.37 3.91
85 A.J. Reed, lhp/1b, Kentucky 136 1.59 6.82 4.29 3.44
86 Austin Robichaux, rhp, Louisiana’Lafayette 152 1.95 6.45 3.31 3.02
87 Jared Miller, lhp, Vanderbilt 55 4.58 7.69 1.68 2.78
91 Evan Beal, rhp, South Carolina 84 5.14 9.75 1.90 4.18
92 Daniel Savas, rhp, Illinois State 167 3.93 8.95 2.28 2.64
93 Aaron Brown, lhp/of, Pepperdine 73 3.82 6.04 1.58 4.93
94 Zach Thompson, rhp, Texas’Arlington 130 2.77 3.6 1.30 4.78
95 Nigel Nootbaar, rhp, Southern California 83 4.12 5.96 1.45 4.34
98 Jonathan Holder, rhp, Mississippi State 83 2.39 13.01 5.44 1.19
99 Ashton Perritt, rhp/of, Liberty 41 3.29 8.56 2.60 1.98
100 Jose Lopez, rhp, Seton Hall 99 2.82 8.55 3.03 3.55
Average 114.2 3.64 8.05 2.51 3.38

College | #College Top 100

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