2021 MLB Draft: Best Available Prospects Remaining
As the first round of the 2021 draft unfolds, we'll be updating our board with the best available players left on the board based on our BA 500 rankings.
Below you can find the best available players remaining after each pick is announced.
- 1Last: 2Notes:
Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 185 | B-T: L-RStovall’s draft profile is not for everyone. He’s a high school shortstop whose fringe-average arm will likely require a slide over to second base in pro ball and he’s not particularly physical (6 feet, 180 pounds). But Stovall may end up as the best pure hitter in this year’s draft with above-average power as well, and a combination like that can alleviate concerns about a player’s eventual defensive home. A lefthanded hitter, Stovall’s swing has a simple load, plenty of adjustability and a smooth, fluid stroke with good timing and the ability to use the entire field. He was a consistent performer against top-notch pitching all last summer and hit .505/.664/1.031 this spring with 14 home runs, 23 stolen bases, 42 walks and just seven strikeouts. Stovall’s long track record of hitting will give teams plenty of confidence in his bat, something that can’t be said for many of the college hitters in this class (who had a shortened season and no summer events in 2020). Defensively, his body is thickening up, but he should be an average defender at second, albeit one limited by his arm strength. He’s an Arkansas signee who could provide an instant impact for the Razorbacks, but the way he’s hit, it’s unlikely MLB teams will let him get to school. Stovall came into the season as a likely Day Two pick, but he’s hit his way into the late first round or supplemental first round consideration.
Age At Draft: 18.4More Less
- 2Last: 3Notes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 205 | B-T: R-RHurd was primarily a catcher as an underclassman at Acalanes High in Northern California, but he switched to pitching and jumped on scouts’ radars with a star turn at the Perfect Game National Showcase last summer. He transferred to Mira Costa High outside of Los Angeles for his senior year and separated himself as one of the top prep pitchers in Southern California, starring at showcases throughout the fall and winter before turning in a strong senior spring. Hurd is a projectable 6-foot-4, 205-pound righthander with a chance for four above-average or better pitches. His fastball sits 88-92 mph and touches 94 out of a clean delivery and arm action and should tick up as he fills out his frame. He complements his fastball with a plus curveball in the mid 70s with downer action and a 78-80 mph slider that shows the potential to be a swing-and-miss pitch as he adds finish to it. He rounds out his arsenal with an above-average changeup. Hurd will fall in love with his breaking balls too much at times, but when he pitches off of his fastball, he cruises. Despite being relatively new to pitching, Hurd shows exceptional command and locates all of his pitches in the strike zone. He’s an astute and inquisitive learner who constantly seeks information on how to get better. Hurd will command a sizable bonus to forgo his UCLA commitment. With four solid pitches, a projectable frame, advanced command and a fresh arm, most teams are willing to pay it.
Age At Draft: 18.6More Less
- 3Last: 6Notes:
Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 180 | B-T: R-RA 6-foot, 180-pound shortstop committed to Duke, Mooney is a heady, aggressive player who does a lot of things well on the diamond but might not have a true plus tool. Instead, he has a bag of 50s and 55s and also has solid defensive versatility. A shortstop who has a chance to stick at the position, Mooney has also played third base and second base this summer and has the tools to handle all three. He’s an above-average runner with plenty of arm strength for third and the athleticism to handle a middle infield spot. Offensively, Mooney has good pure bat-to-ball skills and looks to make the most of that ability early and often, with an aggressive approach that does lead him to expand the zone at times early in the count. He was an impressive performer last summer on the showcase circuit and seemed to be unfazed in every setting he played in. He has a simple setup at the plate with slight bat waggle and an open stance, but quiet hands and enough bat speed to do damage on a variety of pitches. This spring he tried to catch the ball out front and hit for more power, and that did lead to some swing and miss, but Mooney could grow into solid power despite not being super projectable. Once on base, Mooney is also an aggressive baserunner who looks to steal and put pressure on the defense. He could be a tough sign, but plenty of teams seem to like his all-around tool set and baseball instincts inside the top-three rounds.
Age At Draft: 19.0More Less
- 4Last: 7Georgia RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-6 | Wt: 207 | B-T: R-RGeorgia produced a pair of righthanders who signed for a combined $9 million in the 2020 draft (Emerson Hancock, Cole Wilcox) and Cannon was primed to follow in their footsteps as a potential Day One pick this spring in his draft-eligible second season with the Bulldogs. Cannon provided glimpses of big-time stuff out of a large frame and easy delivery as a reliever in the shortened 2020 season, but his 2021 transition to a starting role was delayed after a case of mononucleosis. Cannon pitched to a 3.98 ERA through his first 63.1 innings and 12 starts, with 57 strikeouts (8.1 K/9) and 13 walks (1.8 BB/9) and he showed flashes of excellence, but also got hit around a few times, including a three-homer game against South Carolina in early April. Cannon has a deep pitch mix led by a fastball that’s been up to 97 mph this spring, but averages 93, with sinking action. His go-to breaking ball is a mid-80s slider that is at its best towards the upper band of its velocity range, where it shows sharper bite and he also throws a slower, 12-to-6 curve in the 78-81 mph range that is more of a get-me-over pitch that can be loopy. A mid-80s changeup could be his best secondary. He throws it with good arm speed and it has solid, tumbling action. While Cannon’s arm action gets extended in the back, he repeats well and has thrown plenty of strikes in his collegiate career. He doesn’t turn 21 until a week after the draft.
Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
Age At Draft: 21.0More Less
- 5Last: 8Marysville-Getchell HS, Marysville, Wash. OFNotes:
Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 187 | B-T: R-RThe top-ranked prep hitter in the Pacific Northwest in the 2021 class, Knight was on the same 3D Sweets travel ball team with 2021 prospects Thatcher Hurd and Max Debiec that spent a month this spring playing games in Arizona against local high schools. Knight is an impressive athlete who also excels on the basketball court, and there are few players in the class with better raw tools. The 6-foot-3, 187-pound outfielder had an excellent summer showcase circuit and shot up draft boards, but his stock has dropped slightly this spring due to concerns with his swing that have led some scouts to believe he will need to rework his overall approach at the plate. He sets up with his front shoulder tucked in and his hands pushed into his chest, freeing him to keep his hands inside the ball. When Knight is on plane, he has the ability to hit the ball to all fields, but he’s shown some swing-and-miss issues with both fastball velocity and offspeed pitches. Knight does well in a workout setting, with above-average raw power that could grow into more as he gets stronger, and he showed off his plus speed with a 6.4-second 60-yard dash time at the Perfect Game National showcase. Defensively, Knight makes reads and breaks that are advanced for a high school center fielder, with an above-average arm and the running ability to stick at the position. Due to concerns with his hit tool, Knight could drop in the draft and decide to honor his commitment to UCLA, but a strong showing at the pre-draft combine could lead teams to forget about the toolsy outfielder’s swing.
Age At Draft: 18.8More Less
- 6Last: 9Notes:
Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 200 | B-T: R-RBaumeister is committed to Florida State, where he would have a chance to impact the program as a hitter and a pitcher if he makes it to campus. Scouts prefer his upside on the mound, however, and while he has arm strength that could play nicely behind the plate and some raw power, scouts ultimately question his pure hitting ability. Baumeister has impressed on the mound this spring and taken some steps forward, with plenty of upper-level scouting heat checking in on him frequently enough that he might not make it to Tallahassee. He sat in the 89-92 mph range last summer but has been up into the 94-96 mph range pretty consistently this spring, with a better breaking ball and more consistent strike throwing. Baumeister’s curveball sits in the mid-to-upper 70s with solid three-quarter break and spin. It looks like an above-average future pitch. He’s also thrown a changeup in the 82-85 mph range that shows a tick of fading action but needs more refinement. Listed at 6-foot-3, 215 pounds, scouts love his frame and arm action, and as a solid athlete there’s hope that as he focuses exclusively on pitching he’ll continue to take steps forward.
Commit/Drafted: Florida State
Age At Draft: 19.0More Less
- 7Last: 10Notes:
Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 201 | B-T: B-ROne of the best two-way players in the high school class, Montgomery impressed scouts with a smooth and easy fluidity to his game on both sides of the ball last summer. He’s not the most explosive or twitchy athlete, but he does everything on the field well, with an effortless approach to the game. Teams are split on whether they prefer him as a hitter or pitcher, but he has solid tools across the board at either spot. His loudest tool is his arm strength from the outfield. He showed one of the best outfield arms in the class last summer and it grades out as a 70, which could fit in right field if he has to move to a corner due to being a solid or fringe-average runner. A switch-hitter at the plate, Montgomery has shown solid bat-to-ball skills at times, but some scouts believe his swing needs work and think it’s too mechanical from both sides at the moment. He has solid power potential now and could grow into a bit more in the future as he fills out a still-projectable frame. His arm strength hasn’t yet fully translated to the mound, and perhaps that’s because he’s relatively new to pitching, but Montgomery sits in the low 90s with very little effort and has shown great shape to a mid-70s curveball, with advanced ability to land the pitch. He’s also shown good feel for a low-80s changeup. Montgomery is a Stanford commit, and Stanford has typically done a good job getting its prospects to campus, so he might be a tough sign.
Age At Draft: 18.2More Less
- 8Last: 11Verona (N.J.) HS LHPNotes:
Ht: 6-8 | Wt: 230 | B-T: L-LCoppola is built like a lefthanded Tyler Glasnow with a towering 6-foot-8 frame. Like Glasnow in high school, Coppola's velocity fluctuates greatly, but he tantalizes scouts with what he could become. At his best, Coppola has sat in the low 90s, running his fastball up to 95 mph in his first start. At other times he's topped out in the low 90s, with his velocity dipping more to the upper 80s toward the middle innings and mid 80s at times. Coppola has the wide shoulders and strength projection left on his frame to hold more good weight, which should help him not only hold his velocity but potentially throw in the upper 90s. That's a scary thought for a pitcher whose fastball already plays up beyond the radar gun readings because of how much extension he's able to generate. He has an unusually diverse repertoire for a high school pitcher, with a slider, splitter, spike curveball and a cutter. Nothing is plus yet, but he flashes an average or better slider at times and his splitter shows promise to be a bat-missing pitch too. Coppola did walk a lot of hitters last summer and his walk rate this spring has been on the higher end for a top high school pitcher, but several scouts insist that he has better body control and throws more strikes than you would expect for a teenage pitcher his size. Oakland’s 6-foot-7 lefthander A.J. Puk became the sixth overall pick in 2016 after his junior year at Florida, and the hope for a team is to draft Coppola (also a Gators recruit) before he has a similar breakout.
Age At Draft: 18.6More Less
- 9Last: 12Notes:
Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 170 | B-T: L-RRobertson is one of the fastest players in the 2021 draft class and turned in the quickest electronic-timed 60-yard dash at East Coast Pro last summer—6.26 seconds, an 80-grade time. While scouts view him as more of a 70 runner overall given how his speed plays out of the box, he still uses that running ability to cover massive swaths of ground in center field, with an old-school offensive approach that features drag bunts and slapping the ball the other way. While power will likely never be a huge part of Robertson’s game, scouts said he added about 15 pounds of good weight over the offseason and hit well against solid Florida competition, with very little swing and miss. He has some similarities to Vanderbilt center fielder Enrique Bradfield in terms of tool set and style of play, and Robertson could easily step right into Jud Fabian’s shoes at Florida and continue giving the program an advanced defensive center fielder to anchor the outfield defense. How much a team buys into Robertson’s swing and pure hitting ability will determine where he goes in the draft. At times last summer his swing looked better in batting practice than games and with a 6-foot, 170-pound frame it will be difficult to project much strength or power gains in the future. Still, his defense and speed could be carrying tools if he’s able to control the zone, limit his strikeouts and get on base.
Age At Draft: 18.9More Less
- 10Last: 13Vanderbilt OFNotes:
Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 190 | B-T: R-RGoing back to his high school days at Benjamin High in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., scouts have been excited about Thomas’ tool set and upside. There have always been questions about his ability to get to those tools in games, however, but this spring Thomas turned in a productive season with a .337/.396/.648 slash line, including 13 home runs and 12 stolen bases in 12 tries through his first 51 games. Thomas is a good athlete with above-average running ability, arm strength and raw power out of a 6-foot-3, 215-pound frame. The ball jumps off his bat with impressive pop on easy, graceful swings, but Thomas has always been a high-strikeout, low-walk player. This spring he struck out in 26% of his plate appearances and walked in just 4% of his trips to the plate. That puts a lot of pressure on his pure hitting ability, which is fringy at best. Thomas expands the zone and swings and misses at a decent clip, particularly against breaking balls and offspeed offerings. He does have the bat speed to catch up to high-end velocity and posted an OPS over 1.100 against 93 mph or harder pitches this spring, according to Synergy. Defensively, he’s probably a corner outfielder but some scouts want to see how he looks in center field given his running ability and athleticism. He didn’t get a chance to play there this spring given the presence of Enrique Bradfield, but some teams could start him there at the next level.
Commit/Drafted: Rockies '18 (39)
Age At Draft: 21.3More Less
- 11Last: 15
Brody Brecht (BA Rank: 100 )Ankeny (Iowa) HS RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 185 | B-T: R-RBrecht is an Iowa football recruit and a four-star wide receiver prospect according to 247Sports. Listed at 6-foot-4, 205 pounds, he certainly has the size for a wideout, but he’s also looked impressive this spring on the mound. Brecht is a late riser who teams were running in to see after he got on the mound, and he showed a fastball that reached 97 mph and a plus slider. Those are two extremely loud pitches for a player who lacks significant scouting history and will likely be an enigma for teams given that and his football commitment. He has the frame and the athleticism that scouts love to see on the mound, but there’s also a lot of moving parts in his delivery that will need to be ironed out in the future. He throws with effort and has a deep, plunging action in the back of his arm stroke that could lead to spotty command and inconsistencies with his secondaries, but he also has the physical projection in his frame to potentially throw 100 mph one day.
Age At Draft: 18.8More Less
- 12Last: 16Notes:
Ht: 6-1 | Wt: 220 | B-T: L-LA filled-out, 6-foot-1, 220-pound lefthander, Abner stands out for his physicality and fastball command. Last summer Abner sat in the 90-93 mph range, touching 94-95 and showing an impressive ability to spot the pitch consistently, especially to his glove side, to dominate hitters. He was a candidate this spring to take a jump, but after dealing with turf toe and missing some time, he’s generally shown the same sort of stuff. Scouts have seen him in the 92-94 mph range with some feel to land a breaking ball. He also throws a changeup in the low-to-mid 80s that has impressive diving life and looks like a pitch that can be effective against righties and lefties. Abner has thrown both a curveball and a slider, and the two pitches blend together and get slurvy at times. Scouts prefer the harder variant in the 82-84 mph range, which shows some late bite when he hits on it. Abner has a long arm-hooking action in the back of his delivery, which could inhibit his ability to get to a consistent breaking ball, and it also causes some scouts to wonder if he’s more of a reliever than a starter in the long run. Scouts who like his strong frame, three-pitch mix and chance to start might prefer him in the second or third round, but a Florida commitment could make him a tough sign. Abner will be 19 on draft day and eligible in two seasons if he makes it to campus.
Age At Draft: 19.2More Less
- 13Last: 17Notes:
Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 180 | B-T: R-RBraswell is an advanced two-way player committed to South Carolina, where he would have a chance to pitch and hit if he made it to campus. MLB scouts seem to prefer the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Georgia product as a hitter, where he has an advanced game on both sides of the ball, despite a tool set that’s more average or solid-average across the board. Braswell has a fluid, righthanded swing with solid bat speed, good feel for the barrel and an advanced, all-fields approach. His strength has developed a bit over the offseason and he has more leverage in his swing with a whippy finish, while still showing an impressive understanding of the strike zone for a high school hitter. Braswell aggressively hunts fastballs early in the count but will spit on good breaking balls that aren’t hitter’s pitches. Defensively he has the athleticism and actions to stick at shortstop, and while he’s not a burner in terms of running ability, he can cover enough ground to be an everyday defender there. He could grow into plus arm strength in the future as well. Braswell is a solid pitchability arm at the moment, with a fastball that gets into the lower 90s and two breaking balls from multiple slots. He could be a shortstop and relief pitcher for the Gamecocks if he made it on campus—similar to the way Nebraska uses shortstop and righthander Spencer Schwellenbach.
Commit/Drafted: South Carolina
Age At Draft: 18.9More Less
- 14Last: 18Northwest Florida State JC RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-5 | Wt: 250 | B-T: R-RRoss is one of the better junior college arms in the 2021 class and was scouted heavily early this year at Northwest Florida State JC. Ross is a massive righthander, listed at 6-foot-5, 250 pounds, and he attacks hitters with a three-quarter arm slot that allows him to get good downhill plane on his fastball. That fastball was up into the 98-99 mph range, with some rumors of 100 mph on a few radar guns, and scouts also said that he held it into the mid 90s fairly deep into his outings. After that, he has a hard slider in the upper 80s that has been up to 90 mph. The pitch has the velocity of an above-average breaking ball and when he hits on it there’s impressive biting action and tilt. Ross also throws a split-change in the upper 80s with tumbling action at its best, but he will yank the pitch at times. Some scouts see his splitter as a future plus offering and some prefer the slider. Whichever secondary is preferred, everyone seems to agree that Ross has big-time stuff and exciting upside if he can continue to refine his command. He’ll get scattered at times and needs to more consistently hit on his secondaries to make the most out of his impressive natural arm talent. Ross was seen by enough heavy hitters in the scouting community to get drafted in the first several rounds, but if not he is committed to Georgia, where he’ll get a chance to pitch in the SEC.
Age At Draft: 20.9More Less
- 15Last: 19San Diego State RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 200 | B-T: R-RMelton bounced between pitching, catching and playing first and third base in high school. Once he got to San Diego State and focused solely on pitching, his stuff jumped to make him one of the more intriguing pitchers in the draft class. Melton is an athletic 6-foot-4 righthander who is young for the class (he will be 20 on draft day) and is still growing into his body. His fastball sits 92-95 mph and touches 97, and he has the frame, athleticism and arm speed to project for more velocity to come. He shows feel to spin an average curveball in the mid 70s and a short, mid-80s slider that flashes average with late break. His firm changeup is a fringy fourth offering. Melton’s raw stuff and athleticism excite, but his fastball plays down due to a lack of deception. He surrendered a 6.14 ERA and allowed a .291 opponent average during the regular season despite playing in a pitcher-friendly home park because batters see the ball early out of his glove and can track it throughout his delivery. His long arm action also gives him trouble repeating his release point. Melton’s youth, athleticism and arm strength appeal to teams who believe they can fix his issues by making mechanical changes to add deception and shorten his arm action. He projects to go early on the draft’s second day despite his performance.
Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
Age At Draft: 20.6More Less
- 16Last: 20Notes:
Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 205 | B-T: L-LA physical, 6-foot-3, 205-pound outfielder who’s also a talented football and basketball player, Hayslip has an intriguing package of tools, but scouts have questions about his pure hitting ability. There’s no doubt that Hayslip has impressive bat speed and plenty of raw power to the pull side. Scouts have mentioned he grades out very well in some quantifiable barrel metrics, including barrel connection, bat speed and rotational acceleration, but most scouts also wonder about his pure feel for hitting and approach at the plate. There’s some barring action in his swing and scouts would like to see him use the opposite field more, but he was also difficult to evaluate this spring considering the lower-level competition he faced in Tennessee. He’s an above-average runner now with above-average arm strength to go with it that could make him a good fit in a corner outfield spot, where he will likely have enough raw power to profile well. Some scouts would give him a chance in center field to see if he can stick there, but given his frame and current physicality, most in the industry see him outgrowing the position. Hayslip is considered a fairly strong commit to Alabama and could be a tough sign, and he also got some collegiate interest on the football field from other programs. Hayslip’s father, Ben, is a notable country songwriter who has credits for a number of hit songs by artists like Tim Mcgraw, Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton and many others.
Age At Draft: 19.1More Less
- 17Last: 21Houston County HS, Warner Robins, Ga. RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-6 | Wt: 190 | B-T: L-RWillis is a lanky, 6-foot-6, 190-pound righthander who showed flashes of a decent three-pitch mix, but questionable command last summer. Over the past six months or so, Willis has filled out, added strength to his frame and ticked up his velocity. With that, his draft stock has gone up significantly, and there’s now a chance pro teams might buy into his upside enough to sign him out of a commitment to Georgia. Last summer Willis topped out around 91 mph at East Coast Pro with a fastball that showed solid cutting action to his glove side and a spin rate in the 2300-2500 rpm range. He also showed a mid-70s curveball with 11-to-5 shape and solid depth, and a mid-80s changeup with sink and fading action. While the stuff was intriguing, Willis struggled to control anything and wound up getting the inning rolled on him. However, he’s now touching 93-94 mph this spring and his curveball is getting above-average projections with a bit more power on the pitch. Evaluators believe that as he continues to add strength he’ll be able to more efficiently control his tall frame and levers, and with that the control will follow. While Willis has taken steps forward, he’s still a fairly deep projection pick for teams who believe he has the ingredients to develop a plus fastball and solid enough control to handle a starting role. His upside warrants a pick inside the top-five rounds, but given Georgia’s track record producing arms in recent years, he might be a tough sign.
Age At Draft: 18.5More Less
- 18Last: 22Plant HS, Tampa LHP/1BNotes:
Ht: 6-5 | Wt: 210 | B-T: L-LA two-way player with solid raw power from the left side and a big, 6-foot-5, 210-pound frame, Caglianone has gotten more attention this spring for his exploits on the mound. He has been up to the 95-97 mph range this year, which is an uptick from what he showed last summer. Last summer he sat in the upper 80s and would touch a 92 here or there, but this spring he’s regularly been into the upper 90s. While that sort of arm strength from a high school lefthander is rare, scouts also note that Caglianone needs a lot of refinement with his control and his secondaries. He seems more comfortable pitching out of the stretch than a full windup at the moment, and frequently gets into deep counts because of scattered control. He’s thrown both a curveball and a slider, with the former a slurvy, three-quarter breaking pitch he struggles to get on top of regularly and the latter a hard, lower-80s breaker with sweeping action. He’s thrown a changeup with solid fading life but doesn’t land it consistently yet. There are some moving parts in Caglianone’s delivery that could be cleaned up. He has a long, hooking arm action in the back and he finishes with noticeable head whack and recoil. For those reasons, some scouts think he’s a reliever in the long run, while those higher on Caglianone’s pitching upside think these are all areas where he can improve in the future when he focuses on pitching only. He is committed to Florida. Caglianone underwent Tommy John surgery near the end of the season.
Age At Draft: 18.4More Less
- 19Last: 24
Jacob Kmatz (BA Rank: 136 )Sandia HS, Albuquerque RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 215 | B-T: R-RKmatz attracts draft interest because of his advanced feel for the game considering his age and experience level. The New Mexico high school righthander has a clean, repeatable high three-quarters delivery with downhill plane and deception. He throws plenty of strikes with a fastball sitting 88-92 mph, touching 95, getting the velocity more from leveraging his mechanics than on pure arm speed. Both breaking balls project to be above-average pitches and the changeup should be an average offering. Kmatz’s arsenal plays up because of his future plus command. Kmatz has a more polished repertoire than most high school hurlers, giving him a lower ceiling but a higher floor. He’s a feel over stuff type of pitcher with good makeup. An Oregon State commit, Kmatz is considered to be signable.
Commit/Drafted: Oregon State
Age At Draft: 18.8More Less
- 20Last: 25Notes:
Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 195 | B-T: R-RDiLandri is one of the toolsiest players currently outside the upper-echelon of the 2021 high school class. He had a strong summer showcase season, but observers wanted to see more out of him during his senior high school season. A 6-foot-3, 195-pound outfielder, DiLandri is a plus athlete who has premier bat speed, running ability, arm strength and raw power. He’s a plus runner and has the natural tools to stick in center field, but he will need to improve his routes and jumps to continue in the middle of the outfield. He might be a better fit in right field where his arm will work. There are some pure bat-to-ball questions which could limit his ability to tap into his plus raw power, but DiLandri did simplify his swing last summer and showed better contact ability at the Area Code Games than he did previously. His swing still gets out on the front side and he’s jumpy and not entirely comfortable in the batter’s box. Scouts would also like to see more energy and enthusiasm from DiLandri on the field. Committed to Texas Christian, DiLandri is considered unsignable, meaning that his name may not be called this year.
Commit/Drafted: Texas Christian
Age At Draft: 18.5More Less
- 21Last: 26Notes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 225 | B-T: R-RWhen Smith committed to Vanderbilt, he was throwing in the 88-91 mph range with impressive feel for his changeup and solid control and command. He’s changed his profile over the past year or so, and now has one of the livelier fastballs in the high school class, a pitch that has been up into the 97-98 mph range at its best, with arm-side running action that comes from a lower, three-quarter arm slot. A big and physical righthander listed at 6-foot-4, 225 pounds, Smith attacks hitters with a lot of moving parts, with a long and inverted arm action in the back and a crossfire landing on his finish with significant effort. That has led to questions about his strike throwing and control and leads some scouts to think he’s ultimately best suited for a bullpen role. Smith has thrown multiple breaking balls, a low-80s slider and a mid-70s curve, and scouts think those pitches play up thanks to the life of his fastball, but they both need further refinement and consistency, and some scouts wonder if his arm action will prevent him from getting to an above-average breaking ball. He does have good feel for his changeup, which has a chance to be an above-average pitch. Smith’s arm talent is legit, and he has starter upside if he can iron out some of the moving parts in his delivery, but he could be a tough sign out of Vanderbilt.
Age At Draft: 18.1More Less
- 22Last: 27Notes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 225 | B-T: L-RThe 6-foot-4, 225-pound righthander is a physical specimen with his large frame and adult body, but he leaves little to the imagination when it comes to projection. Christo has advanced talent for a high schooler, and despite being somewhat inconsistent all the ingredients are there with a group of average to slightly above-average pitches. The Nebraska commit has had his fastball up to 95 mph and it was electric early on, and he has been sitting in the low 90s. He gets good life with the pitch, he has some sink with it and he can turn it into a cutter that runs off barrels, depending on the grip. Christo’s secondaries are adequate and he tunnels well with a changeup that has been pretty good, and the righty has some feel to spin the breaking ball, though his slider is inconsistent. He has a sound delivery from a three-quarter slot and a relatively clean path, though his arm action leaves something to be desired. Because he already looks like a grown man, mature and muscle bound, some evaluators would rather look to pitchers with more projectability and something to dream on. Christo has proven himself to be hardworking and incredibly intelligent, scoring in the 99th percentile of the ACT. If he joins the Huskers, he’s likely to be their Friday night guy and find success with his advanced presence and ability.
Age At Draft: 18.5More Less
- 23Last: 28
Will Frisch (BA Rank: 153 )Oregon State RHPNotes:
Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 226 | B-T: R-RComing out of high school in Minnesota, Frisch was throwing 95 mph at his best and was selected by the Twins in the 36th round in 2019, but decided to honor his commitment to Oregon State. In his first year on campus in 2020, Frisch went 0-0, 2.61 in seven appearances (one start), with 12 strikeouts and six walks in 10.1 innings, and he’s fared even better as a sophomore while splitting time as a short reliever, long reliever and in a starting role. Heading into regionals, Frisch is 3-0, 2.17 with 51 strikeouts in 54 innings, while his control, which was well below-average in high school, has improved (3.7 walk rate). Frisch’s stock has ticked up significantly this year, as he’s shown the versatility to pitch in any role with a three-pitch mix headlined by two above-average or better offerings. Frisch has shown a power fastball that sits in the mid 90s and has topped out at 98 mph, and it hasn’t been hit hard despite the fact it plays straight. His changeup flashes plus and regularly looks above-average, and his slider has progressed this season from looking below-average to average. At 6 feet, 226 pounds from the right side, Frisch has little projection remaining and some evaluators believe he might fit best in the bullpen down the road, but if he can continue to improve his control he has the stuff to start. As a draft-eligible sophomore, Frisch could be a tough sign.
Commit/Drafted: Twins '19 (36)
Age At Draft: 21.0More Less
- 24Last: 29Notes:
Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 205 | B-T: R-RA year after Zac Veen went as the No. 9 overall pick in the draft, Spruce Creek High in Port Orange, Fla. has another player who could get drafted in righthander Brandon Neely, though Neely doesn’t have the sort of top-of-the-draft talent that Veen did before him. Still, Neely has a talented arm from the right side and scouts think he’ll throw plenty hard one day in the future, already getting into the 94-95 mph range now with the arm speed and physical projection that could have him in the upper 90s in a few years. On top of a lively fastball, Neely has shown both a curveball and a slider that have above-average potential, along with an 83-84 mph changeup that he flashes enough to project for a solid four-pitch mix in the future. He doesn’t use the changeup much now, and instead relies more heavily on his breaking balls. Neely throws a curveball in the mid-to-upper 70s and the pitch has good top-down movement at its best, but occasionally blends into his slider with more slurvy shape. Scouts seem to like the curveball variant better and believe it could turn into a consistent above-average pitch in the future. Neely is plenty athletic, with a delivery that’s on line to the plate, but scouts have noted that his fastball command will vary from day to day and they aren’t sure exactly why that’s the case. He’s committed to Florida and could be a difficult sign, but teams like him in the three-to-five-round range.
Age At Draft: 18.0More Less
- 25Last: 30Desert Oasis HS, Las Vegas 1B/LHPNotes:
Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 215 | B-T: L-LWalsh split his athletic career in high school between baseball and football, playing defensive end and tight end on the gridiron. Big and physical, with a 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame, Walsh has impressive plus raw power, but some scouts worry about his natural feel to hit while others see more feel there. His power is mostly to the pull side, but he can also hit the ball to all fields. A hitch in his swing could prevent him from catching up to velocity and he’s limited to first base, but he has impact potential for teams who believe in the swing. He has strength and body control, and firming up his body would improve his athleticism. A below-average runner, Walsh should be fine at first base. He has an Oregon commitment, with some observers believing that he could turn himself into a more desirable draft pick in three years if he goes to college and continues to develop as a hitter. For now, Walsh is not a finished product by any means, but the power alone is sure to make him an alluring candidate on Day Two of the draft. Walsh also pitched throughout his prep career, but if drafted it will be as a first baseman. Right now, he’s more of a block of clay that could be formed into a solid source of power from the left side. Whether that happens in pro ball or at Oregon is to be determined.
Age At Draft: 18.3More Less