BA Newsletter: Subscribe Today!

Top 2022 College MLB Draft Prospects

Hunter_Barco_BillMitchell.jpg
(Photo by Bill Mitchell)

Baseball America’s 2022 college rankings are compiled in consultation with front office executives, major league scouts college coaches and other evaluators. The list is an attempt to gauge the industry’s consensus on the talent of the draft-eligible four-year college players in the country, though plenty will change between now and the 2022 draft.

After releasing our top 50 prospects in the 2022 high school class earlier this week, we’re bringing the college top 50 for the same class today. 

Those who followed our 2019 draft coverage will be familiar with most of the names that make up the list below. The top 50 incoming freshmen are largely the top-ranking prospects from the BA 500 who either weren’t drafted or were selected but refused to sign and instead made it to campus. That will certainly change as players develop over the years and unheralded amateurs make a name for themselves while in college. 

At the moment, the class is led by Florida LHP Hunter Barco, who was considered a day one talent and potential first round pick, but concerns about his signing bonus demands pushed him to the 24th round. Barco was the second-highest ranked player on the BA 500 to make it to campus, behind Vanderbilt righthander Jack Leiter, who is a member of the 2021 draft class as a draft-eligible sophomore. 

Barco has an arsenal of three potential plus pitches, with a fastball that has tremendous running action out of a lower arm slot, a low-spin rate split-changeup and a slider that flashes promise but needs further refinement. He’ll join a program that has had no issues developing college arms in recent years and should make an immediate impact on the Gators’ pitching staff.

Louisiana State OF Maurice Hampton checks in at No. 2. He’s currently a safety on the LSU football team and was one of the better two-sport athletes in the 2019 prep class, along with OF Jerrion Ealy, who will also play both sports at Mississippi. 

Mississippi leads all schools with five players currently ranked in the top 50, led by the toolsy but raw Ealy and also including C Hayden Dunhurst, RHP Andrew McDaniel, SS Connor Walsh and RHP Derek Diamond.

LSU is second with four players ranked in the top 50, while Auburn, Florida, Miami and Vanderbilt are all tied with three players apiece. 

You can see the full list below, with BA 500 scouting reports included where applicable.

Updated on: 10/4/2019 See Full List Expand Collapse All
  1. 1

    Hunter Barco

    Florida LHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 212 | B-T: L-L
    Commit/Drafted: Mets '19 (24)
    Barco entered the 2019 draft cycle as one of the most anticipated prep pitchers in the class after blowing up as an underclassmen at Perfect Game’s Jupiter showcase in 2017. There, he showed three plus pitches from the left side with a projectable frame that had some scouts talking about the potential of Barco one day being a top-five pick. That sort of talk has cooled a bit since then, particularly as Barco had an up-and-down summer in 2018, when his fastball wasn’t quite as electric and his arm slot dropped down to almost fully sidearm. That created plenty of inconsistencies with his slider, allowing the pitch to back up too frequently and come across without the bite it had shown previously. However, Barco came out of the gate strong this spring for his senior season. He got his arm slot up and closer to a natural three-quarter look, and he also looked much more physically developed and muscular throughout his 6-foot-4, 212-pound frame. With improved strength, better timing in his delivery and a more efficient arm slot, Barco’s stuff has ticked up this spring. He averages around 91-92 mph with his fastball, but it routinely gets up into the 94-95 mph range and pairs with a low-80s slider that projects as a plus offering. He also has a mid-80s split-changeup that’s among the best in the class with a spin rate in the 900 to 1,110 rpm range. The one concern with Barco this spring is that his control has come and gone at times, but he has the athleticism and clean arm action to project at least average strike-throwing ability in the future. Scouts praise Barco’s professional makeup and he’s put himself into a class of his own in among the 2019 prep lefthanders, but as a Florida commit he is expected to be a tough sign. If he does make it to campus in Gainesville, Barco could make an impact as a two-way player thanks to above-average raw power with the bat, but he is certainly a pitching prospect first and foremost.

    More Less
  2. 2

    Maurice Hampton

    Louisiana State OF
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 210 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Padres '19 (23)
    A two-sport star committed to Louisiana State as both an outfielder and four-star defensive back, Hampton is among the most athletic players in the 2019 draft class. He hit well during the showcase circuit last summer, barreling up plenty of high-end arms while showing that he has the necessary bat speed to handle plus velocity. However, he also displayed an agressive, free-swinging approach at the plate that could use plenty of refinement. Hampton has impressive bat-to-ball skills and good hand-eye coordination that serves him well in the batter’s box, but because of his muscle-bound frame he can get a bit stiff and will need to make a few mechanical tweaks to make sure he routinely gets into a good hitting position. He has at least average raw power and will likely develop more in the future, but there’s some question as to how much power Hampton will ever reach in games. Defensively, Hampton has the speed—he’s a plus-plus runner—to stick in center field long term, and he has the athleticism to make highlight-reel plays look almost routine. But he will need to iron out both his reads and route-running ability to reach that potential. Hampton has flashed plus arm strength, but the power of his throws has been inconsistent, and like his mechanics in the box, Hampton’s arm action can look a bit stiff at times. If Hampton does get drafted high enough to forgo his commitment to LSU, he could take huge strides forward once he refines his game and is able to focus exclusively on his growth as a baseball player. He has the talent to fit in the back of the first or supplemental first round.

    More Less
  3. 3

    Brooks Lee

    Cal Poly SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-1 | Wt: 180 | B-T: B-R
    Commit/Drafted: Giants '19 (35)
    A standout at the 2018 Area Code Games, Lee is one of the top prospects in Southern California. He’s likely the best pure hitter in the region, with a terrific feel to hit from both sides of the plate as a switch-hitter. He doesn’t possess much power at the moment, but instead has a short, quick, line-drive oriented swing that he uses to routinely square up the ball and spray it around the field. While he’s not a slugger, Lee has a strong, 6-foot-1, 180-pound frame, and he has the ability to drive the ball out of the park thanks to his feel for the barrel. He’s added more muscle and strength this spring and could start tapping into more power in the future—particularly from the left side. Defensively, Lee should play somewhere in the middle of the infield with extremely reliable and quick hands, deft footwork around the bag and solid-average arm strength. Some believe he’s a better fit for second base as a below-average runner, but Lee has fantastic feel for the game, great positioning and a high baseball IQ. His father, Larry, is the head coach at Cal Poly—where Lee is committed—and he has played against older competition throughout most of his career. With a plus hit tool and a chance to be a defensive asset in the middle of the infield, Lee has a chance to sneak into the back of the first round.

    More Less
  4. 4

    Bryce Osmond

    Oklahoma State RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 180 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Nationals '19 (35)
    A thin, uber-athletic two-way player out of Oklahoma, Osmond could make an immediate impact at Oklahoma State in a myriad of ways if he ever made it to campus, but scouts are enamored enough with his upside and potential on the mound that he may never make it to Stillwater. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound righthander wowed scouts with a big outing in Arizona this spring, when he was up to 96 mph with his fastball and also showcased a true plus slider. His stuff hasn’t been quite as electric throughout the rest of the spring, as his fastball settled in the 90-93 mph range and his slider flattened out at times without the consistent power that it flashed in the past. At its best, the pitch is a low- to mid-80s bender with good horizontal movement. In addition to his fastball/slider combination, Osmond has shown feel for an 82-85 mph changeup. While Osmond’s arm action and delivery aren’t ideal—he has some hooking action in the back and falls off to the first-base side of the rubber—he still manages to throw quality strikes. When Osmond isn’t on the mound, he plays shortstop. Some clubs think he has a chance to handle the position, but overall there’s skepticism about his bat. The large majority of teams prefer him as a pitcher.

    More Less
  5. 5

    Jerrion Ealy

    Mississippi OF
    Notes:

    Ht: 5-10 | Wt: 192 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Diamondbacks '19 (31)
    One of the top athletes in the 2019 draft class, Ealy is also an elite, five-star running back who is committed to Mississippi for both baseball and football. 247Sports rates him as one of the country’s top-30 football recruits, which should surprise no one who has seen him on either playing surface. When it comes to baseball, Ealy is overflowing with plus tools. He packs plenty of strength into his well-built, 5-foot-10, 192-pound frame, and he has plus raw power thanks to his strength and above-average bat speed. Unsurprisingly, Ealy is also one of the fastest players in the class. In addition to his speed and raw power, Ealy is a gifted defender thanks to his closing speed, athleticism and easy plus arm strength. He could play all three outfield positions and is one of the better, natural defenders in the class. For all of Ealy’s tools and athleticism, however, the industry has soured on him this spring as he’s struggled offensively against below-average Mississippi competition. While Ealy does have impressive hand-eye coordination and solid pure bat-to-ball skills, he has long needed refinement in his plate discipline, approach and mechanical setup at the plate—which is mostly to be expected from a two-sport athlete at his level. However, scouts thought he would hit much better this spring and have been disappointed with the lack of progress he has shown in the batter’s box. Given Ealy’s upside on the gridiron and underwhelming performance this spring, he figures to be a tough sign out of Mississippi. He no longer projects as a first-round talent—like he did last summer—but still has tremendous upside if he ever focuses exclusively on baseball.

    More Less
  6. 6

    Spencer Jones

    Vanderbilt LHP/1B
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-7 | Wt: 212 | B-T: L-L
    Commit/Drafted: Angels '19 (31)
    Jones entered the season as one of the best two-way players in the class as a 6-foot-7, 212-pound lefthander with massive upside on the mound as well as surprising athleticism and feel to hit as a first base prospect. His season was cut short after he underwent surgery to repair a small fracture in his elbow, but Jones did recover soon enough to hit for his La Costa Canyon team late in the season. While teams seriously looked at Jones as both a pitcher and hitter, his upside is highest on the mound, where he has reached the mid-90s with his fastball and sat in the 89-93 mph range last summer. He also showed a mid- to upper-70s curveball with 12-to-6 break and tremendous depth that projects as a plus offering in the future. Jones doesn’t have the quickest arm, but his delivery is surprisingly in-sync for a prep pitcher of his size who has only been pitching seriously for a year and a half—a testament to his above-average athleticism and body control. Offensively, Jones has solid feel for the barrel and decent strike-zone recognition, although he will chase pitches at times. He’s an above-average runner at the moment, and some scouts believe he could develop plus raw power in the future as his body continues to mature. Jones figures to be a tough sign out of Vanderbilt, especially with his injury this spring, and he could turn into a first round-caliber prospect in a few years if he adds the physicality that most scouts think is coming. Jones should be a legitimate two-way player with the Commodores.

    More Less
  7. 7

    Cade Doughty

    Louisiana State 3B
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-1 | Wt: 175 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Tigers '19 (39)
    Doughty is a well-rounded player, but his lack of present power will make it tough for teams to decide whether they want to buy him out of his commitment to Louisiana State. The Tigers have a history of taking well-rounded players like Doughty, developing them, and watching them turn into even better draft picks after a few years in college. Doughty will likely end up at second or third base in pro ball, but he shows excellent instincts and good hands to go with a plus arm and average range. He’s an average runner and is capable of playing almost anywhere other than shortstop, catcher or center field. At the plate, Doughty shows above-average hand-eye coordination that leads scouts to believe he could end up as an above-average or even plus hitter. The questions revolve around whether he’ll develop above-average power. Right now, he has below-average power. Some evaluators see him developing significantly more power as he gets older and stronger thanks to his hitting ability, while others see it as more likely that he’ll never develop more than average pop.

    More Less
  8. 8

    Chris Newell

    Virginia OF
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 187 | B-T: L-L
    Commit/Drafted: Cardinals '19 (37)
    An athletic outfielder with a lean, 6-foot-3, 187-pound frame, Newell has an enticing toolset and significantly raised his draft stock last summer. At a Perfect Game event in Atlanta, Newell was one of the showcase’s best hitters and also displayed strong defensive potential in center field. Offensively, he has above-average raw power from the left side, with twitchy bat speed and a smooth, uphill, fly ball-oriented swing. He’s also an above-average runner and shown above-average arm strength in the past, but that has been inconsistent this year as Newell has been recovering from Tommy John surgery. While he’s not a pitching prospect, he had been in the low 90s on the mound previously, which speaks to his arm strength at it’s best. The questions with Newell are in regards to his hit tool, and the fact that he doesn’t have much of a track record outside of the Atlanta event. He has a power-over-hit offensive approach, and scouts put 45 grades on his hit tool with plenty of swing-and-miss in his game. They also wonder whether he will be more of a corner outfielder rather than a true center fielder as he continues to physically mature. There’s a lot to like with Newell, but he is expected to be a tough sign out of his Virginia commitment.

    More Less
  9. 9

    Trey Faltine

    Texas RHP/SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-1 | Wt: 185 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Red Sox '19 (39)
    If you’re looking for a scouts’ favorite among the high school class, you’ll hear Samson Faltine III (which is why he goes by Trey) mentioned a lot. Faltine can do a little bit of everything and is more impressive because of his versatility rather than any one standout tool. Faltine’s father stopped playing baseball when he emigrated from Venezuela to the U.S., but he worked with Trey from a young age, which is apparent in Faltine’s excellent baseball IQ. Faltine has capably played almost everywhere around the diamond—no one is going to waste the 6-foot-3, 195-pounder’s athleticism at first base and he’s never caught, but pretty much everywhere else is a viable option. The Texas signee is a legitimate two-way player who shows feel on the mound and a solid approach at the plate. As a pitcher, he doesn’t wow with overpowering stuff, but his average, 88-91 mph fastball (he can touch 92-93 mph) plays up because he locates it, it’s a high-spin pitch (2,700 rpm) and has solid, natural cut. His 74-77 mph average curveball has excellent shape and he locates it well. He’s toyed with a 78-80 mph changeup that flashed late fade last summer, and he’s added an 82-84 mph slider that shows above-average potential. As a pitcher, Faltine’s stuff may end up getting better if teams bet on his athleticism and future strength gains, and his feel will help him survive as he works to improve his stuff, but many teams like him better as a position player. Faltine’s best hope as a hitter is to play either shortstop or center field—he’s spent time at both spots—but he lacks elite speed, relying more on his routes and reads in the outfield and his first step and good hands at shortstop. Faltine has fringe-average raw power at best right now, and his swing is more contact-oriented than anything. He shows bat speed and barrel control, but he needs to drive the ball more as he matures. Faltine’s versatility means he’s not a refined defender at any position yet, but his feel for the game and excellent body control gives plenty of reasons to believe that the best is yet to come once he focuses on either hitting or pitching and picks a position. He could be a two-way star at Texas who plays both ways as a freshman, but as a potential late Day 1 or early Day 2 pick, he may never get to Austin.

    More Less
  10. 10

    Will Rigney

    Baylor RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-5 | Wt: 205 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Giants '19 (38)
    A big, physical righthander out of Waco, Texas, Rigney has plenty of arm strength, showcased by a fastball that was mostly in the 90-93 mph range this summer and touched 95 mph. He also throws a slider that ranges from 79-84 mph and looked like a plus pitch at times with sharp, late bite. There were instances, however, when the pitch became loopy and hung over the plate. Rigney also showed good feel for a low-80s changeup with arm-side movement and fading action that could be developed as a third offering. This spring, Rigney has dealt with a forearm strain that limited his innings, but scouts think he has a frame—6-foot-5, 205-pounds—that will allow him to regularly throw in the mid-90s and hold innings as a big, power-armed righthander. Rigney is committed to Baylor.

    More Less
  11. 11

    Brett Thomas

    South Carolina RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-5 | Wt: 225 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
    A pop-up righthander out of Georgia, Thomas missed significant time prior to this spring due to injury, but returned showing dynamic stuff out of a strong, 6-foot-5, 220-pound frame. Thomas has a fastball that’s regularly in the 91-95 range and couples it with a breaking ball that he has terrific feel to spin and consistently lands for strikes. He has a stabbing action in the back of his delivery that could scare some teams, but he has a fair arm action and delivery on the whole. On talent alone, Thomas fits as a late Day 2 pick, but he’ll come with a high price tag and a South Carolina commitment that could scare teams off given his lack of track record and medical history.

    More Less
  12. 12

    Michael Curialle

    UCLA SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 198 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Rockies '19 (31)
    Curialle followed Chase Strumpf and Royce Lewis as the starting shortstop at JSerra High School and led the Lions to consecutive Boras Classic South tournament championships the last two seasons. This spring, he finished one hit shy of tying Lewis’ school single-season hits record. Curialle is an impressive blend of physicality and athleticism. He’s strong and broad-chested at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds and has big raw power, but he’s also a plus runner who glides around the infield remarkably well. He makes all the plays at shortstop and also has the athleticism for center field and third base. Curialle’s best tool is his plus-plus arm. He makes every throw from deep in the hole, cuts down runners on long relays and has touched 93 mph on the mound despite little pitching experience. Curialle swings and misses a bit too much, which is what prevents him from being a potential first-rounder, but he has the tools to project as an average or better hitter. A potential five-tool talent, Curialle is committed to UCLA and will command a hefty signing bonus.

    More Less
  13. 13

    Hayden Dunhurst

    Mississippi C
    Notes:

    Ht: 5-11 | Wt: 208 | B-T: B-R
    Commit/Drafted: Rockies '19 (37)
    Dunhurst is one of the better hitting prospects among the Mississippi high school class, and after slimming down this spring he has a better shot to remain at catcher. His lefthanded bat gives him a chance to be a solid pro even if he moves off the position, as he shows plus power and plus hitting potential. He uses the whole field, and his power allows him to drive the ball to the opposite-field gap. He didn’t get much of a chance to show that power this spring as many teams opted to simply intentionally walk him time after time. Defensively, his footwork and actions will require a lot of work in pro ball, but he does show a plus arm. However, that arm strength doesn’t always play in games because of his footwork, and he currently projects as a below-average defensive catcher. Dunhurst’s bat can sustain a move to first base one day, but if he can figure out a way to play just average defense behind the plate, his power potential could make him a valuable pro. Dunhurst is committed to Mississippi.

    More Less
  14. 14

    Myles Austin

    Alabama SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 184 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Brewers '19 (20)
    A wiry, 6-foot-3, 184-pound infielder with plenty of athleticism, Austin is a projectable hitter out of Atlanta who currently has solid raw power that projects for plus as he continues to fill out his frame. There’s some swing-and-miss in Austin’s game, and his long levers might continue to worry scouts when paired with his aggressive tendencies, but there’s enough impact potential and bat speed to give him a high offensive ceiling. Defensively, he shows middle infield actions and quickness, but he currently has average arm strength with an unconventional arm slot. He may have to move off the position as he continues to get stronger and could wind up being a better fit for third base. He’s a plus runner underway with long, smooth strides on the bases, but he could take a step backwards in that department in the future as he fills out his lanky frame. Austin is polarizing among the scouting community, with some preferring to dream on his significant upside while others wonder if he’ll ever show enough consistent hitting ability to make the most of his raw tools. Austin is committed to Alabama.

    More Less
  15. 15

    Hayden Mullins

    Auburn LHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 190 | B-T: L-L
    Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
    There were instances last summer when Mullins appeared to be following in the footsteps of 2018 first-round pick Ryan Weathers, potentially giving the Tennessee high school ranks back-to-back prep lefthanders selected in the first round. Instead, Mullins has battled injuries throughout the spring and scouts have seen him infrequently. He didn’t pitch at USA Baseball’s National High School Invitational in early April, and when he has taken the mound his stuff has not been at the level that it was last summer. Mullins has pitched mostly in the 86-90 mph range this spring, occasionally touching 92 mph with below-average control. That is a stark contrast to what he showed when fully healthy last summer, when he had a low-90s fastball that touched 94 mph and a plus curveball in the 72-79 mph range with great depth. Mullins put on a clinic at last summer’s East Coast Pro showcase, where he looked like one of the better pitching prospects in the class and certainly one of the top prep lefthanders. Mullins has a high leg kick in his delivery that’s reminiscent of MacKenzie Gore, and he’s previously shown the stuff and strike-throwing ability to be a Day 1 draft pick. However, the questions about his size—Mullins is listed at 6 feet, 190 pounds—and durability have grown louder this spring, to the point where he fits more in the third or fourth round. Mullins in an Auburn commit and could re-establish himself as a no-doubt first-round pick with a strong career in the Southeastern Conference.

    More Less
  16. 16

    Jonathan French

    Clemson C
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 210 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Indians '19 (30)
    The latest in a recent line of Georgia prep catchers that includes Tyler Stephenson, Joey Bart, Luis Campusano, Anthony Seigler and Will Banfield, French is among the best prep backstops in the 2019 class. French has solid tools across the board, with above-average raw power, plus arm strength and solid receiving skills. Teams are mixed on his hit tool, with some expecting him to become a solid-average hitter who uses all fields with above-average power. Other teams are more skeptical about his ability to hit for impact in games, seeing it show up more in batting practice with swing-and-miss questions against higher-level pitching. Defensively, French has all the tools to be above-average behind the plate—he was voted as the best defensive catcher in the prep class by scouting directors prior to the season—but he will need to improve the efficiency of his exchange and his footwork on throws to second base. As a receiver, he has strong, soft hands and frames and blocks well. French is committed to Clemson.

    More Less
  17. 17

    Brennan Milone

    South Carolina SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-1 | Wt: 185 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Dodgers '19 (28)
    One of the better pure hitters in Georgia, Milone attended Perfect Game National early last summer but otherwise wasn’t at many of the big national showcases. As a result, Milone flew a bit under the radar until a loud offensive performance at Perfect Game’s Jupiter tournament last fall, and he’s continued to hit well this spring in front of plenty of scouting directors and crosscheckers. A 6-foot-1, 185-pound shortstop, Milone might be a better fit for second or third base in the future. He’s a fringe-average runner who lacks a lot of quick-twitch lateral mobility and has just average arm strength. His defensive instincts are solid, however, and scouts are confident he’ll be able to stick in the dirt in some capacity. Milone has average raw power, which could limit his profile or make him more of a utility-type player as he progresses. Regardless, scouts think he has above-average hitting ability with good feel to put the barrel on the ball. Enough high-level evaluators have traveled to see Milone this spring that it wouldn’t be a surprise if he was drafted early on Day 2 and did not make it to South Carolina, where he is committed.

    More Less
  18. 18

    Zachary Maxwell

    Georgia Tech RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-6 | Wt: 245 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Yankees '19 (30)
    A physical righthander with a big, 6-foot-6, 245-pound frame, Maxwell showed arm strength over the summer and got into the low 90s with questionable control. This spring, that velocity has ticked up in a big way, and he’s been as high as 98 mph out of a low, three-quarter arm slot. Something of a split-camp prospect, some teams are in heavily on Maxwell and like him as high as the second or third round thanks to his arm strength and improved secondaries that include a curveball, slider and changeup. Others are more worried about his below-average athleticism and high-maintenance body, as well as the scattered and inconsistent strike-throwing ability he has shown this spring. He has 30-grade control at this point and will need to improve the consistency of his release point moving forward to take advantage of his natural arm strength. If a team believes they can make a few mechanical tweaks and refine his control, they are looking at a righthander who could easily touch triple digits in the future, while those more skeptical will be content to let him get to Georgia Tech and prove it in college.

    More Less
  19. 19

    Andrew McDaniel

    Mississippi RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 170 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
    After a strong summer, McDaniel looked like one of the best prep pitching prospects in Louisiana. In addition to featuring a 92-95 mph fastball, he showed the ability to spin both a curveball and slider. But during the spring, McDaniel had to be shut down with a sore elbow. He tried to return, but when he did his velocity dipped into the upper 80s and he didn’t have the same control he had shown before he was shut down. The injury clouds his status and makes it a little more likely he’ll make it to Mississippi. If he does, there’s a chance he’ll be throwing even harder in a few years.

    More Less
  20. 20

    Sebastian Keane

    Northeastern RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 165 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Red Sox '19 (11)
    The top prospect in Massachusetts, Keane is a thin, projectable righthander committed to Northeastern. Listed at 6-foot-3, 165 pounds, Keane has plenty of room to fill out and add more strength to a loose, athletic frame. He was up to 94 mph with his fastball last summer, but this spring he’s pitched more in the 90-92 mph range. Keane has three secondary offerings, including a low-80s slider that projects as an average offering and a currently below-average curveball in the upper 70s. He casted his curveball at times last summer, but when he gets on top of the pitch he is able to generate good spin and solid depth. Keane also has a changeup that projects as an average offering. Overall, Keane’s present stuff isn’t explosive, but he has plenty of traits to dream on and has shown good feel for landing his pitches for strikes despite an high-effort delivery that features a slight head whack. He’s a high-upside prospect who has had plenty of high-level scouts in to see him frequently this spring.

    More Less
  21. 21

    Connor Walsh

    Mississippi SS
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-2 | Wt: 185 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Never Drafted
    Walsh is one of the fastest players in the 2019 prep class. He’s a plus-plus runner who also played wide receiver for his high school football team. On the diamond, Walsh plays shortstop and has a chance to stick with solid actions and above-average arm strength. If for some reason he has to move off of the position at the next level, he has the tools to profile nicely as a dynamic center fielder. He has the athleticism and instincts to handle the job just fine. Walsh has a short, quick stroke from the right side, but his bat is the lightest tool in his arsenal. Scouts put below-average future grades on his hitting, but he does have some ambush power and has the frame—6-foot-2, 185 pounds—to grow into more power down the line. Some teams might prefer to let Walsh go to school at Mississippi and show that he can hit in the SEC, but his running ability and defensive value might be enough for someone to take a chance early on Day 2.

    More Less
  22. 22

    Dylan Eskew

    Miami RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 185 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Diamondbacks '19 (24)
    A lanky, 6-foot-3, 185-pound righthander, Eskew has taken a jump this spring. Last summer, the Miami commit was in the upper 80s and showed good feel to spin his breaking ball, but scouts have been impressed with his uptick during his senior season. His fastball has been up to 93 mph, and he’s pitched more regularly in the low 90s. He’s also shown two distinct breaking balls in a slider and curveball that both look like solid offerings. His delivery is a bit unorthodox, with a long arm action that has significant plunge in the back and crossfiring action in his lower half, but he’s athletic enough to make it work. He hasn’t had any strike-throwing issues this spring, doing well to sync his upper and lower halves. Eskew is a projectable arm who could still add plenty of weight and increase his strength in the future. While he’s has a strong commitment to Miami, he has pitched well enough this spring that some team could draft him in the third or fourth round.

    More Less
  23. 23

    Carter Rustad

    San Diego P
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-4 | Wt: 190 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Brewers '19 (23)
    A high school righthander with easy actions and projection is what you get with Rustad. He has a thin, 6-foot-4, 190-pound frame with a quick arm and easy three-quarter delivery with minimal effort. The San Diego commit has been up to 96 mph with his fastball and even touched 97 mph at an early start in Arizona. There’s a high spin rate on his fastball, though his velocity tends to fall off toward the middle and end of his outings, dipping into the 88-91 mph range. Rustad has shown feel for spinning a breaking ball at times, and this spring he separated the pitch into two distinct offerings: a slider and a curveball. However, scouts have graded both pitches as below-average this spring, with a solid changeup currently his best secondary. Rustad has plenty of starter traits and elements to like as a projection arm, with athleticism and good feel to locate his fastball, but he’ll need to add strength, hold his velocity deeper into games and make strides with his breaking pitches to fully realize his upside.

    More Less
  24. 24

    Jacob Meador

    Texas Christian RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 5-11 | Wt: 170 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Mariners '19 (31)
    A 5-foot-11, 170-pound righthander, Meador doesn’t have the typical profile of a top-200 draft prospect. His fastball sits in the upper 80s and can reach 92 mph on a good day. Given his size and handedness, most teams typically wouldn’t be interested in this range. However, Meador’s fastball routinely plays up, especially against the best hitting competition in the 2019 class, and he generates a shocking amount of whiffs with the pitch up in the zone despite below-average velocity. Meador throws from a slightly high, three-quarter arm slot and gets across his body with a fast arm. He has a good feel for landing all of his pitches in the strike zone. On Baseball America’s preseason ballot sent to major league scouting directors, Meador was voted No. 2 in command among all 2019 pitchers and third in fastball movement. In addition to his high-spin fastball, Meador also has an above-average, mid- to upper-70s curveball with shape that ranges from 11-to-5 to a true top-to-bottom, 12-6 offering. Meador lands the pitch in the zone when he wants and can also use it to expand the zone low, trying to get hitters to swing over the top. Meador has also thrown a low-80s changeup, which he delivers with good arm speed. Meador is committed to Texas Christian.

    More Less
  25. 25

    Nathaniel LaRue

    Auburn C/RHP
    Notes:

    Ht: 6-3 | Wt: 203 | B-T: R-R
    Commit/Drafted: Blue Jays '19 (25)
    LaRue is a 6-foot-3, 203-pound two-way prospect committed to Auburn. He is athletic and profiles well as a catcher, but evaluators seem to be most intrigued by what he can do on the mound. He shows above-average arm strength and throws plenty of strikes thanks to a repeatable delivery. LaRue throws his fastball in the low 90s as well as a breaking ball that flashes plus. LaRue also shows feel for a third-pitch changeup with sinking action. While he has some power with the bat, most evaluators see his long-term future on the mound.

    More Less
Loading
Close

Are you a member?

In order to access this exclusive content you must have a Baseball America Account. 

Login or sign up  

of Free Stories Remaining