2012 Draft Midseason Top 60





The 2012 draft crop has few legitimate No. 1 overall candidates, with little separation among potential first-round picks. Several players who entered the year ranked in the top 10 have gone backwards or gotten injured, while a few players—most notably college righthanders such as San Francisco's Kyle Zimmer, Duke's Marcus Stroman and Texas A&M's Michael Wacha—have taken big steps forward. The Top 60 covers the first round and the supplemental first round, but scouting directors believe that the combination of the underwhelming class, all the injuries and the new collective bargaining agreement will lead to a lot of surprises in June.

RK. PLAYER POS. SCHOOL PREV. RK.

1. Byron Buxton OF Appling County HS, Baxley, Ga. 3
Five-tool standout earns comparisons to a combination of the Upton brothers.
2. Mike Zunino C Florida 5
Baseball America's Midseason Most Outstanding Player fits the blueprint for what teams want in a catcher.
3. Kyle Zimmer RHP San Francisco 28
Athletic righthander has been up to 98 mph and has as much draft helium as anybody.
4. Mark Appel RHP Stanford 1
Fastball can get flat, so he hasn't dominated (3.32 ERA in 57 IP, 55 SO) like other frontline college arms.
5. Kevin Gausman RHP Louisiana State 6
Draft-eligible sophomore touches upper 90s, adds a plus changeup and two breaking balls.
6. Lucas Giolito RHP Harvard-Westlake HS, Studio City, Calif. 2
Touched 100 mph before being sidelined with a sprained elbow.
7. Michael Wacha RHP Texas A&M 23
A sleeper to go first overall, Wacha has excellent control and polish to go with loaded arsenal.
8. Carlos Correa SS Puerto Rico Baseball Academy, Gurabo, P.R. 17
May outgrow shortstop but has smooth actions and above-average power potential.
9. Marcus Stroman RHP Duke 22
Small but athletic with electric stuff, including a fastball up to 97 mph and the nastiest slider in the draft.
10. Max Fried LHP Harvard-Westlake HS, Studio City, Calif. 15
Projectable lefthander sits low-90s, maintains his velocity and features an above-average curveball and a good changeup.
11. Gavin Cecchini SS Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La. 16
One of the few sure-things at shortstop in this year's class and is choosing to hit with wood bats this spring.
12. Albert Almora OF Mater Academy, Hialeah Gardens, Fla. 14
USA Baseball poster boy plays above-average defense in center and is polished offensive player.
13. Deven Marrero SS Arizona State 4
Still a top-notch defender, but is not hitting this spring and has been criticized as being lackadaisical at times.
14. Victor Roache OF Georgia Southern 9
After mashing 30 home runs last year, a broken left wrist sidelined him for most of this season.
15. David Dahl OF Oak Mountain HS, Birmingham 10
Polished at the plate, but there are questions about whether he's speedy enough for center or if he'll have enough power for a corner.
16. Zach Eflin RHP Hagerty HS, Oviedo, Fla. 65
Has the most helium of any high school player as his velocity climbed into the mid-90s this spring.
17. Stryker Trahan C Acadiana HS, Lafayette, La. 12
Has two things—lefthanded power and speed—that are rare for catchers.
18. Richie Shaffer 3B Clemson 26
Ultimate position will be a question, but provides one of the best college corner bats in a year thin in that regard.
19. Courtney Hawkins OF/RHP Carroll HS, Corpus Christi, Texas 38
Loaded with tools, Hawkins has above-average athleticism, arm strength and the most usable power in this year's high school class.
20. Stephen Piscotty 3B Stanford 18
The Cape Cod League's top hitter continues to hit for Stanford and may end the year with more doubles than strikeouts.
21. Tyler Naquin OF Texas A&M 30
Yet to be seen how well he can handle center field, but has plenty of tools including a smooth lefthanded stroke and an 80 arm.
22. Andrew Heaney LHP Oklahoma State 45
Fastball sits anywhere from 88-94 mph, slider has become his best secondary pitch and he's among the leaders in D-I strikeouts.
23. Addison Russell SS Pace (Fla.) HS 37
Improved his stock by slimming down and is playing a better shortstop than he did in the summer.
24. Brian Johnson LHP/1B Florida 8
Zunino's roommate doesn't have impact stuff, but has good durability, poise and command.
25. Walker Weickel RHP Olympia HS, Orlando 11
Delivery has gone backwards a little this spring, but still has good stuff and projection remaining in his frame.
26. Lance McCullers Jr. RHP Jesuit HS, Tampa 20
Hasn't allowed an earned run this spring, but scouts still see him as a closer in pro ball.
27. Chris Beck RHP Georgia Southern 7
Not showing the same power stuff this spring that he flashed in the Cape Cod League last summer.
28. Matt Smoral LHP Solon (Ohio) HS 13
Had surgery on his left foot after his first official outing this spring. The color of his cast? Carolina blue.
29. Ty Hensley RHP Santa Fe HS, Edmond, Okla. 41
Physical righthander with power stuff has grown up around the game with a dad who played pro ball and coached in college for 10 years.
30. Joey Gallo RHP/1B Bishop Gorman HS, Las Vegas 21
Too much swing-and-miss at the plate is leading many teams to prefer Gallo on the mound, where he's been up to 97 mph.
31. Luke Sims RHP Brookwood HS, Snellville, Ga. 32
Clemson recruit has athleticism to go along with an above-average fastball-curveball combination.
32. Ty Buttrey RHP Providence HS, Charlotte 87
Projectable righthander touched 96 early in the season, down to 90-93 later on.
33. Trey Williams 3B Valencia HS, Santa Clarita, Calif. 27
Son of 1983 first-rounder Eddie Williams recently broke Foothill League home run record with his 26th career blast.
34. Pierce Johnson RHP Missouri State NR
Had significant helium before being sidelined with a mild forearm strain.
35. James Ramsey OF/2B Florida State 69
Senior Seminole ranks among college baseball's leaders in on-base percentage, slugging and runs.
36. Peter O'Brien C Miami 90
After transferring to Miami as a senior, O'Brien has shown improved balance at the plate and impressive leadership.
37. Nick Williams OF Ball HS, Galveston, Texas 42
Loaded with tools but really lacking in baseball instincts.
38. Lewis Brinson OF Coral Springs (Fla.) HS 51
Has a body like Cameron Maybin with the intriguing power-speed profile to match.
39. D.J. Davis OF Stone HS, Wiggins, Miss. 82
Fastest player in the draft has serious helium as he's putting together quality at-bats this spring.
40. Travis Jankowski OF Stony Brook 24
Scouts are divided on Jankowski. Those that like him see him prototype center fielder/leadoff hitter; detractors doubt the bat.
41. Nolan Sanburn RHP Arkansas 43
Draft-eligible sophomore sits comfortably in mid-90s and flashes wipeout power curveball, but he's still learning nuances of pitching.
42. Jesse Winker OF Olympia HS, Orlando 50
It's all about the bat for Winker, as he'll be limited to a corner outfield spot or first base—but the bat is very good.
43. Duane Underwood RHP Pope HS, Marietta, Ga. 33
A lot to like: He's athletic, young for his class and has already touched 95 mph, but scouts say he's been up and down this spring.
44. Hunter Virant LHP Camarillo (Calif.) HS 40
Scouts can dream on Virant, as the lefthander has only been pitching seriously for about a year.
45. Branden Kline RHP Virginia 35
Athletic, has feel for spin; consistency has wavered with move from Cavaliers bullpen to rotation this season.
46. Tanner Rahier SS Palm Desert (Calif.) HS 55
Energetic shortstop plays in the ABD Spring League instead of suiting up for his high school.
47. Nick Travieso RHP Archbishop McCarthy HS, Southwest Ranches, Fla. 53
Generated early buzz after touching 97 mph in March.
48. Carson Kelly 3B/RHP Westview HS, Portland 54
Oregon recruit has power potential to go with above-average arm strength and makeup.
49. Clint Coulter C Union HS, Camas, Wash. 56
Just over the Columbia River from Kelly, Coulter is strong as an ox.
50. Pat Light RHP Monmouth 58
One of the few standout talents in a down year for the Northeast.
51. Chris Stratton RHP Mississippi State NR
Has a good pitcher's build with an above-average fastball-slider combo, and has moved from bullpen to rotation.
52. Jake Barrett RHP Arizona State 19
Still has power stuff, but moved to the bullpen and scouts have concerns about the health of his arm.
53. Adam Brett Walker OF/1B Jacksonville 31
Having a good but not great year, and still has right-right corner-bat profile without sick power numbers.
54. C.J. Hinojosa SS Klein Collins HS, Spring, Texas 36
Things haven't gone as planned—didn't get into Texas early and will miss most of the season with a dislocated left shoulder.
55. Mitchell Traver RHP Houston Christian HS 52
Physical workhorse build with a heavy fastball and a power slider.
56. Jameis Winston OF Hueytown (Ala.) HS 64
Will be a tough sign, as he's also the top quarterback recruit in the country and wants to play both sports at Florida State.
57. Corey Seager 3B Northwest Cabarrus HS, Concord, N.C. 60
Kyle's little brother a more-typical third base profile but the South Carolina recruit is rumored to be nearly unsignable.
58. R.J. Alvarez RHP Florida Atlantic 47
Third-team preseason All-American has good numbers (0.73 ERA with five saves), but scouts worry about the consistency of his strikes.
59. J.T. Chargois RHP Rice 44
Has power stuff, but is a tough look for decision makers as he's only thrown 18 innings through the first eight weeks.
60. Barrett Barnes OF Texas Tech 97
Good power-speed combination but may not have quite enough wheels to stay in center field.