2013 HS Scouting Reports: 1-25
As the high school season gets
underway, we'll take a look at the scouting reports for Baseball
America's Top 100 high school prospects. Here are
the reports on the prospects in the 1-25 range . . .
See Also: 2013 HS Top 100 Scouting Reports, 26-50
See Also: 2013 HS Top 100 Scouting Reports, 51-75
See Also: 2013 HS Top 100 Scouting Reports, 76-100
See Also: 50 Players Who Just Missed The 2013 HS Top 100
1. Austin Meadows, of, Grayson HS, Loganville, Ga. (@austin_meadows)
Standing 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, Meadows looks like a better version of David Dahl, who went 10th-overall to the Rockies in 2012. Meadows doesn't have Dahl's arm strength, but he's a better runner, grading out as a 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale. The Clemson commit who spends his summers with Team Elite shows excellent bat speed at the plate without compromising balance. A lefthanded hitter, Meadows has a quiet setup and puts together quality at-bats, showing the ability to turn on fastballs and keep his hands back on breaking balls.
2. Clint Frazier, of, Loganville (Ga.) HS (@CJF19)
Frazier may have led the nation with his 24 home runs last season. You wouldn't know it at first glance, as he has an average build at 6 feet and 190 pounds, but Frazier has quick-twitch athleticism and is loaded with tools. Upon closer inspection, his thick forearms and strong hitter's hands stand out. He's an above-average runner and, even though he's spent a lot of time at high school at shortstop and third base, his speed plays well in the outfield. He has above-average arm strength, too. At the plate, he shows exceptionally quick hands and consistently makes loud contact. Like Meadows, Frazier plays for Team Elite in the summer. While his swing could use a little toning down, he shows a short, balanced swing and the ball jumps off his bat for power to all fields. Frazier is committed to Georgia.
3. Trey Ball, of/lhp, New Castle (Ind.) HS (@South_paw24)
Ball is regarded as the top two-way talent in this draft class and has tantalizing projection in his 6-foot-6, 180-pound frame. As a pitcher, his fastball typically sits in the 87-89 mph range, but he's touched 92 and projects to throw harder as he continues to fill out. His secondary pitches are developing, including his 82-83 mph changeup with good arm speed and fade, as well as a promising 75-77 curveball. As good as Ball is on the mound, he may be even more intriguing as a position player, where he shows five-tool potential. The question will be his hitting. Ball shows above-average power when his long arms get extended, but he is prone to getting tied up inside. He is a premium athlete with above-average speed and good instincts on the basepaths. As you may expect from his prowess on the mound, Ball shows a rifle arm from the outfield. Ball, who plays for the Indiana Prospects in the summer, is committed to Texas.
4. Reese McGuire, c, Kentwood HS, Covington, Wash. (@Reese_McGuire21)
McGuire has something teams love—lefthanded power from an up-the-middle player. Hitting from a wide base, McGuire gets good loft and shows impressive power to his pull side, but also has the ability to drive the ball the other way. He's also a good athlete and spent time all around the diamond while helping USA Baseball's 18-and-under team win gold last summer at the IBAF Junior AAA/18U World Championships. As a pro, McGuire fits best behind the plate thanks to his agility, soft but strong hands and above-average arm strength. He's a quiet leader, but has an excellent baseball IQ and has been calling his own games since he was 10 years old. McGuire, who plays for Baden Baseball in the summer, has fringe-average speed, though he shows awareness on the bases and plays the game hard. He helped Kentwood win Washington's 4-A state title in 2012 and is verbally committed to San Diego.
5. J.P. Crawford, ss, Lakewood (Calif.) HS (@jp_crawford)
Crawford—a distant cousin of Dodgers outfielder Carl Crawford—shot up draft boards this spring as he continued to play well at big showcase events. He is considered the best shortstop prospect in the country in a draft class that is woefully thin at the position. A product of Lakewood High and Yak Baseball West, Crawford has a lean, rangy frame at 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds. He's a smooth defender with at least average arm strength. A lefthanded hitter, Crawford has a patient approach at the plate and has shown an excellent feel for hitting. He sprays the ball from gap to gap with a quick, line-drive stroke. Crawford is committed to Southern California.
6. Dominic Smith, 1b/of, Serra HS, Gardena, Calif.
The game seems to come easily to Smith and he is one of the best all-around bats in this year's draft class. As a lefthanded hitter, his loose, effortless swing is a joy to watch, unless you're the opposing pitcher. He produces hard contact to all fields and projects to be an above-average hitter with above-average power. He's a little shorter than most big league first basemen at 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, but could also play a corner outfield spot because he is an average runner and has above-average arm strength. He's definitely a position player as a pro, but when he gets on the mound, Smith sits in the 90-92 mph range. Smith played for the Yak Baseball West program and is committed to Southern California.
7. Jordan Sheffield, rhp, Tullahoma (Tenn.) HS (@jordan_sheff)
Sheffield has a slender, athletic build at 6-foot-1 and 175 pounds. He shows a loose, easy delivery and sat in the 91-93 mph range most summer before really impressing scouts in Jupiter, Fla., by throwing 94-96 mph and touching 97. He mixes in a sharp, hammer curveball with tight, late break in the 76-81 mph range and flashes an 80-81 mph changeup. Sheffield's brother, Justus, is a talented lefthander for the 2014 draft, too. Sheffield plays summer ball with the Knights Baseball program and is committed to Vanderbilt.
8. Ryan Boldt, of, Red Wing (Minn.) HS (@ryanboldt17)
Boldt stood out this summer for his athleticism in center field and his sweet, lefthanded swing. Boldt, who stands 6-foot-1 and 190 pounds, profiles as a top-of-the-order table setter. He puts together quality at-bats, tracks the ball well and shows quiet takes at the plate. He has a smooth, line-drive swing and already shows the ability to drive the ball the other way. He's an above-average runner and set the USA Baseball 18-and-under record with his 13 stolen bases during the IBAF Junior AAA/18U World Championships last summer. The speed also shows up in center field, where Boldt covers a lot of ground. As a child, Boldt batted and threw lefthanded, but an arm injury when he was 8 years old forced him to learn how to throw with his right arm, and his arm strength is currently below average. Boldt is a similar player to Brandon Nimmo, who went 13th overall to the Mets in 2011. He plays summer ball for the Ohio Warhawks and is committed to Nebraska.
9. Kohl Stewart, rhp, St. Pius X HS, Houston (@KohlStewart1)
Stewart has an excellent pitcher's frame at 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds. He has first-round talent as a pitcher, but he'll be a difficult sign due to his football/baseball commitment to Texas A&M. A star quarterback, Stewart's athleticism and aggressiveness translate well to the mound. He sits in the 88-92 and touched 93 at the Area Code Games, while showing the event's best slider—a true power pitch in the 84-86 range with tilt. Stewart, who pitched for the Houston Banditos in the summer, also showed good feel for his 80-82 changeup. Stewart's team had played 12 games through March 6, but he hasn't pitched yet, still nursing a shoulder injury from his football season.
10. Jonathan Denney, c, Yukon (Okla.) HS
Oklahoma has produced a first-round high schooler in each of the past two years. Those picks have been pitchers, but the state's streak will likely continue this year with a position player. Denney has a burly, muscular frame at 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds and stands out most for his potent righthanded bat. He has thunderous power potential and crushes balls to all fields. He has a short swing with excellent balance to go along with premium bat speed. Denney moves well behind the plate, and shows above-average catch-and-throw tools, too. He's played with the D-BAT Mustangs and Marucci Elite and is committed to Arkansas.
11. Oscar Mercado, ss, Gaither HS, Tampa (@Osc_Merc)
In a class without many true shortstops, Mercado stands out with his lanky 6-foot-2, 175-pound body, his soft hands and his smooth infield actions. Mercado has the best chance of any high school player in this class to remain at shortstop and shows a strong arm across the diamond. While his tools are evident, scouts want to see him focus more consistently in the field. At the plate, he has a line-drive swing with gap power and shows above-average speed. Mercado has plenty of potential; he just needs to add strength to his wiry frame and continue to mature as a player. A native of Colombia who moved to the United States when he was 8 years old, Mercado played with the Marucci Elite program and is committed to Florida State.
12. Rob Kaminsky, lhp, St. Joseph Regional HS, Montvale, N.J. (@Kaminsky21)
Kaminsky isn't tall at 6 feet and 190 pounds, but he's a bulldog on the mound with some of the best present stuff in this year's high school class. He repeats his athletic delivery well, features a fastball that sits in the 88-90 mph range and tops out at 93. Kaminsky throws his fastball to both sides of the plate and loves to challenge hitters inside. In addition to his fastball, Kaminsky mixes in a sharp, 76-79 mph hammer curveball and a solid 80-83 mph changeup. Kaminsky played for the Tri-State Arsenal program and is committed to North Carolina.
13. Stephen Gonsalves, lhp, Cathedral Catholic HS, San Diego
Gonsalves has a tall, projectable build at 6-foot-5 and 205 pounds. He easily creates downward angle to the plate with his 88-92 mph fastball and can spot that pitch up to all quadrants of the strike zone. A member of the San Diego Show travel team, Gonsalves mixes in a soft curveball in the 70-71 mph range and a splitter that he uses as a changeup, but both of his secondary pitches are works in progress. Gonsalves is old for the class and will turn 19 about a month after the draft. This would make him a draft-eligible sophomore if he winds up at San Diego.
14. Ian Clarkin, lhp, Madison HS, San Diego
Clarkin has a lean, athletic build at 6-foot-2 and 185 pounds. He carved hitters up all summer and fall with his advanced stuff, including a fastball that sits in the 89-92 mph range and a vicious 74-78 mph curveball. Clarkin also flashes a solid 80-83 mph changeup, a pitch with nice fade that he sells with fastball arm speed. Since this initial list came out, Clarkin has leapfrogged Gonsalves on many scouts' lists and had significant helium heading into his senior season. Both pitchers were teammates on the San Diego Show and, like Gonsalves, Clarkin is also committed to San Diego.
15. Garrett Williams, lhp, Calvary Baptist HS, Shreveport, La.
Williams first made a name for himself in the 2007 Little League World Series as one of the best 12-year-olds in the country and now he's one of the best high school seniors. He has a prototypical 6-foot-2, 195 pound frame and throws with an easy delivery from a three-quarter arm slot. Williams' fastball sat in the 88-91 mph range this summer, but he's already been up to 93 early this spring. He mixes in a sharp 74-77 mph curveball and an occasional changeup that is still developing. Williams is a good athlete on the mound, played for Marucci Elite last summer and is committed to Oklahoma State.
16. Rowdy Tellez, 1b, Elk Grove HS, Sacramento
Though his given name is Ryan, Rowdy is a fitting nickname for the 6-foot-5, 250-pound behemoth. If he weren't such a good baseball player, Tellez would have made a fine tight end with his size, big, strong hands and his deceptive speed. Though he mostly plays first base for his high school, Tellez may have enough athleticism to give right field a shot. Tellez moves well once he gets going and has average arm strength. Even if he stays at first base, that won't be a problem because Tellez's bat is his calling card. He has jaw-dropping raw power, as evidenced by his upper-deck shots into the Metrodome's far reaches at the Perfect Game National Showcase. But Tellez isn't just an all-or-nothing slugger. Tellez has a patient approach at the plate and a good feel for hitting hard line drives all over the park. He has natural loft to his swing, so when his timing gets off a little bit, he can roll over on balls. But when he's on, few players in the class hit them as hard as Tellez. He played summer ball with the NorCal Bulls and is committed to Southern California.
17. Travis Demeritte, 3b, Winder-Barrow HS, Winder, Ga.
Demeritte has an live, athletic, 6-foot-1, 185-pound frame. He hits with an open stance and has a loose, smooth swing. He has good balance in his swing and stays inside the ball very well. Demeritte seems to square everything up and makes loud contact. He's mostly a line-drive hitter now, but should add power as he fills out. His quick hands at the plate also show up in the field, where he's an acrobatic defender with above-average arm strength. Demeritte is an average runner. He played for the East Cobb Braves and is committed to South Carolina.
18. A.J. Puk, lhp/1b, Washington HS, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Puk has excellent size and physicality at 6-foot-6 and 205 pounds. Puk is still raw on the mound but gives scouts a lot to dream on. He has a loose, fluid delivery at times and his fastball sits in the 88-92 mph range. He throws a 74-77 mph changeup with some fade, but he just started throwing a breaking ball during his junior year and it still needs a lot of work. Since Iowa plays high school baseball in the summer, Puk will spend the spring playing in the Perfect Game Iowa high school league. Playing for the Evoshield Canes this fall, he also showed some potential as a power-hitting first baseman and could wind up as a two-way player similar to Brian Johnson, particularly if he winds up honoring his commitment to Florida.
19. Nick Ciuffo, c, Lexington (S.C.) HS (@nciuffo14)
Ciuffo has been on the prospect scene for a while. He committed to South Carolina as a 14-year-old, before he even played a varsity baseball game, and was Drew Cisco's catcher at Wando High in Mt. Pleasant, S.C. as a freshman before transferring to Lexington before his junior year. (Cisco went on to be a sixth-round pick of the Reds.) Ciuffo has a strong build at 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds and with that comes strong power from the left side of the plate. Ciuffo was one of two players at the East Coast Professional Showcase to hit a home run (the other being South Carolina outfielder K.J. Woods) and sent a towering 350-foot homer out to right field. Ciuffo, who plays for the Diamond Devils in the summer, also showed a good feel for hitting, consistently keeping his hands back and driving balls hard to left-center. He is an average runner who shows above-average catch-and-throw tools behind the plate and plays with a tough edge.
20. Justin Williams, of, Terrebonne HS, Houma, La.
Williams is a physical specimen with impressive power from the left side. A good athlete at 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds, Williams has broad shoulders and a tapered waist. He plays some third base for his high school but profiles best as a corner outfielder. Williams is a fringe-average runner and should be able to man right field thanks to his solid arm strength. His arm should improve, too, as he gets on a throwing program and learns how to crow hop. At the plate, he takes a lot of pitches and works deep into counts. He has some of the best raw power in the class, but it's unclear how much of that he'll be able to tap into because he swings and misses a lot and tends to slow his bat down on offspeed pitches. He will also need to improve his footwork as a hitter, as he currently moves his feet too much during his swing. Williams played for Marucci Elite this summer and is committed to Louisiana State.
21. Brett Morales, rhp, King HS, Tampa (@Brett_Morales34)
Even though he spent the season playing with a supplemental first-rounder (White Sox first baseman Keon Barnum), Morales didn't get a lot of scouting attention as a pitcher last spring. A two-way player, Morales had to spent most of his season at second base, after the team's regular second baseman got suspended. But Morales firmly placed his name on scouts' lists at the Perfect Game National Showcase last summer and it's clear that Morales' future is on the mound. He has a solid, 6-foot-2, 190-pound build and throws his fastball in the 90-92 mph range and touches 94. He has a very good 78-79 mph circle changeup and a mid-70s curveball with 12-6 break. Morales played for the Orlando Scorpions in the summer and is committed to Florida.
22. Dustin Driver, rhp, Wenatchee (Wash.) HS (@dustindriver27)
Driver has an athletic, projectable build at 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds. His fastball already sits in the 90-92 mph range and he's already touched as high as 94. He pitches downhill and gets some occasional armside run on his fastball. Driver, a UCLA recruit, likes to pitch off of his fastball and is the rare high school pitcher whose changeup is ahead of his breaking ball. Driver has confidence in his 82-85 mph changeup, but his curveball can be inconsistent. That's understandable, considering Driver didn't throw a breaking ball until he got to high school. He's still working on his secondary stuff, but now has a four-pitch arsenal, as he added a nasty cutter to his repertoire this winter. Driver's delivery shows good tempo and he stays in-line to the plate well. He works fast, throws a lot of strikes and shows good poise on the mound.
23. Matt McPhearson, of, Riverdale Baptist HS, Upper Marlboro, Md.
Speed is McPhearson's game. He has a tightly-wound build at 5-foot-10 and 170 pounds and is one of the fastest players in this year's draft class, as a legitimate 80 runner on the 20-80 scouting scale. High school statistics impossible to track comprehensively, but McPhearson may have led the country with his 68 stolen bases in 2012. He has below-average arm strength, but makes up for it defensively by covering huge swatches of land in center field. The biggest question for McPhearson will be how well he'll hit. His quick-twitch athleticism translates into bat speed, but he's a little raw at the plate. A lefthanded hitter, McPhearson hits from a crouched stance with a leg kick and can try to get too big at the plate sometimes. For now, he'd be better off by shortening up his swing and just trying to hit line drives and ground balls. He will also need to improve his recognition of breaking balls at the next level. McPhearson played for Marucci Elite this summer and is committed to Miami.
24. Andy McGuire, ss, Madison HS, Vienna, Va. (@AndyMcGuire7)
McGuire has a nice build at 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds. A shortstop now, he profiles better at third base, where he shows smooth actions and above-average arm strength. He was a below-average runner last summer on the showcase circuit, but it was revealed in the fall that he was playing through a hip injury. He had surgery in September for a partial labrum tear and bone spurs in his left hip and is fully healthy now. He is very balanced at the plate and one of the better pure hitters in the class. With a short, quick swing, he has a knack for squaring the ball up, has a line-drive approach and shows average power potential. McGuire has one of the rare righthanded swings that is pretty to watch. He played for the Evoshield Canes last summer and is committed to Texas.
25. Cavan Biggio, 3b, St. Thomas HS, Houston (@doinitBIGgio23)
Biggio has grown up around the game, as his father Craig had a 20-year Hall of Fame-caliber career for the Astros. Cavan is bigger than his father at 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds. He also hits lefthanded and, as expected, shows a smooth, balanced swing with excellent hitting fundamentals. At the plate, Biggio shows a lot of similarities to Corey Seager, who went 18th overall to the Dodgers in 2012. The question for Biggio will be where he winds up defensively. He played third base, second base and first base on the showcase circuit this summer, but second base might make the most sense because of his below-average arm strength (and the fact that his father was a six-time all-star at the position doesn't hurt). Biggio played summer ball with the Houston Heat and is committed to Notre Dame, where his brother Conor is a sophomore infielder.