World Wood Bat Best Tools, Top Prospects




Here's a look at the top 10 seniors at this year's WWBA tournament, as judged by national writer Alan Matthews in consultation with scouts in attendance. Rankings reflect the player's ceiling and likelihood of reaching that ceiling, with some consideration to performance at the event. For expanded rankings and coverage, go to Prospects Plus.

WORLD WOOD BAT TOP 10 PROSPECTS
1.Eric Hosmer, 1bAmerican Heritage HS, Plantation, Fla.
While high school first basemen are rarely teams' first choices in the draft, Hosmer has the feel for hitting to go early.
2.Kyle Skipworth, cPatriot HS, Riverside, Calif.
Raw, but projectable defensive skills and a powerful bat make the laid-back Skipworth a valuable commodity.
3.Tim Beckham, ssGriffin (Ga.) HS
A lackluster showing caused Beckham to slide on this list, but his five plus tools could make him the first prep drafted.
4.Aaron Hicks, rhp/ofWilson HS, Long Beach
Legitimate two-way skills, but if Hicks keeps dealing like he did in Jupiter, he'll be drafted early as pitcher.
5.Gerrit Cole, rhpLutheran HS, Orange, Calif.
This tournament was arguably Cole's best showing, and he could potentially pitch in the back of a big league bullpen.
6.Daniel Webb, rhpHeath HS, West Paducah, Ky.
Webb was ranked behind Hosmer as the No. 2 underclassman at last year's event and he's fulfilling his promise.
7.Michael Palazzone, rhpLassiter HS, Marietta, Ga.
Atypical of some East Cobb (Ga.) products before him, Palazzone pitches with guile as well as two plus pitches.
8.Rolando Gomez, ssFlanagan HS, Pembroke Pines, Fla.
At 5-foot-7, 145 pounds, Gomez is often overlooked, but his 7-for-12 performance was indicative of his hitting ability.
9.Brett Mooneyham, lhpBuhach Colony HS, Atwater, Calif.
Tucked away in Northern California for most of the summer, Mooneyham made a splash on a national stage in Florida.
10.Brett DeVall, lhpNiceville (Fla.) HS
A physical lefty with a rare blend of power and a feel for pitching, DeVall spun a three-hit shutout with 11 strikeouts.

WORLD WOOD BAT BEST TOOLS
Best Batting ProspectTim Beckham, ss, Griffin (Ga.) HS
Best Power ProspectEric Hosmer, 1b, American Heritage HS, Plantation, Fla.
Fastest BaserunnerJay Austin, of, North Atlanta HS
Best Pitching ProspectDaniel Webb, rhp, Heath HS, West Paducah, Ky.
Best FastballGerrit Cole, rhp, Lutheran HS, Orange, Calif.
Best Breaking PitchAaron Hicks, rhp/of, Wilson HS, Long Beach
Best ControlMichael Palazzone, rhp, Lassiter HS, Marietta, Ga.
Best Defensive PlayerTim Beckham, ss, Griffin (Ga.) HS
Best ArmKyle Skipworth, c, Patriot HS, Riverside, Calif.
Best Defensive CatcherTaylor Hightower, c, Cartersville (Ga.) HS
Most Exciting PlayerAaron Hicks, Wilson HS, Long Beach