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Best Tools In The 2025 MLB Draft High School Class


Image credit: Kayson Cunningham (Photo by Mike Janes/Four Seam Images)

With our release of the preseason Top 100 prospects in the 2025 high school class and Preseason Underclass All-American teams, it’s time to dial in on the 2025 players with the best tools.

We’ve selected the top five players in different offensive, fielding and pitching categories, with analysis for players in each category. The players here aren’t strictly Top 100 prospects, but the winners draw heavily from players who scouts have on their radar for the 2025 MLB Draft. There’s probably someone who can run a 6.2 in the 60-yard dash but is otherwise crude or a pitcher who has exquisite control of an 84 mph fastball who isn’t on here, so the focus here is on the draft prospects with the best tools in the country.

Players are listed with the state where they attend high school and their college commitment in parentheses. 

Best Hitter

  1. Kayson Cunningham, SS, Texas (Texas Tech)
  2. Ethan Holliday, SS, Oklahoma (Oklahoma State)
  3. Brady Ebel, SS, California (LSU)
  4. Dean Moss, OF, Florida (LSU)
  5. Coy James, SS, North Carolina (Mississippi)

It’s hard to cut this list off after just five players or sort these hitters into an easy order. Each of the five players on this list are talented hitters with different skill sets, with all earning Preseason First-Team Underclass All-American honors. In terms of elite bat-to-ball skills, plate coverage of all pitch types and high-level performance with a swing and approach that should translate to continued success at higher levels, it’s hard to top Cunningham. Ebel and Holliday have two of the sweetest lefthanded swings in the class. Moss spent last summer playing up a level for the Canes National 17U team and dominated, while James followed up a terrific summer by playing shortstop for Team USA at the U-18 World Cup as an underclassman. 

Best Power

  1. Gabriel Coltman, OF, Oregon (Uncommitted)
  2. Omar Serna, C, Texas (LSU)
  3. Xavier Neyens, 3B, Washington (Oregon State)
  4. Ethan Holliday, SS, Oklahoma (Oklahoma State)
  5. Quentin Young, 3B/OF, California (LSU)

Another category that’s difficult to cut off at five players. Strictly on raw power, it’s hard to top Coltman. He’s 6-foot-5, 225 pounds, an imposing physical presence with plus raw power that could end up being a 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale. Holliday doesn’t need to sell out to generate power and he doesn’t try to put on a big show during BP, taking a professional approach to use all fields with an easy swing and a selective approach that should help him tap into that power in games. Neyens, Serna and Young all stand out for their physicality, strength and bat speed, with all of them owning elite power for the class. Players like catcher Brayden Jaksa, outfielder Dean Moss, first baseman/lefthander Kruz Schoolcraft, outfielder/first baseman Evan Hankins, third basemen Sebastian Norman and Josh Proctor, infielder/outfielder Sean Gamble and outfielder Bryden Bull all have big power as well in a crowded field. 

Best Speed

  1. Eli Pitts, OF, Georgia (South Carolina)
  2. Griffin Enis, OF, Mississippi (Mississippi)
  3. William Patrick, OF, Louisiana (LSU)
  4. Micah Matthews, OF, Virginia (Uncommitted)
  5. Carter Christenson, SS, Ohio (Ohio State)

Pitts has the type of quick-twitch athleticism and explosiveness that could push him up draft boards if his bat continues to take a step forward. Enis has the speed and instincts that stand out in center field. Matthews is a two-sport standout with baseball and football and the most dynamic player of this group with his potential for both power and speed as a 6-foot-3 righthanded hitter. Patrick and Christensen are both excellent athletes who have run 6.4s in the 60-yard dash.

Best Strike-Zone Discipline

  1. Ethan Holliday, SS, Oklahoma (Oklahoma State)
  2. Brady Ebel, SS, California (LSU)
  3. Dean Moss, OF, Florida (LSU)
  4. Everett Johnson, OF, North Carolina (NC State)
  5. Ethan Clauss, SS, Nevada (Texas A&M)

Holliday and Ebel are both extremely patient, selective hitters. They pick up spin, track pitches well and rarely chase. Moss has a terrific eye at the plate as well, consistently drawing more walks than strikeouts. Johnson uses his smaller strike zone to his advantage, piling up walks and making a ton of contact, which along with his speed makes him a dangerous leadoff hitter who posts huge OBPs. Clauss stands out for his plate discipline and easy actions both at the plate and at shortstop. 

Best Defensive Catcher

  1. Vincent DeCarlo, C, Florida (NC State)
  2. Brady Dallimore, C, Nevada (TCU)
  3. Trent Grindlinger, C, California (Mississippi State)
  4. Korbin Reynolds, C, Tennessee (Vanderbilt)
  5. Quinn Schambow, C, Illinois (Oklahoma State)

DeCarlo checks a lot of boxes scouts look for in a catcher this age. He consistently saves runs with his ability to block balls, he receives well and he has a strong arm with pop times under 1.9 seconds on his best throws. Dallimore is an athletic mover behind the plate with soft hands and big arm strength. Reynolds has good lateral mobility, blocks well and is a good receiver with a strong arm. Schambow is an athletic catcher with one of the strongest arms in the 2025 class. Grindlinger maneuvers his big 6-foot-3 frame well to block breaking balls in the dirt with steady receiving skills and a strong arm. Presley Courville (Texas A&M commit) is another athletic catcher who draws praise for his actions behind the plate and ability to manage a pitching staff. 

Best Defensive Infielder

  1. Billy Carlson, SS, California (Vanderbilt)
  2. Rashad Hayes, SS, California (Stanford)
  3. Manny Lantigua, SS, Florida (Florida State)
  4. Gustavo Melendez, SS, Puerto Rico (Wake Forest)
  5. Ethan Clauss, SS, Nevada (Texas A&M)

Carlson captures attention immediately with the way he moves at shortstop. He’s a bouncy athlete who is light on his feet with clean actions and a strong arm, projecting as a plus defender. Hayes floats around shortstop with clean footwork and quick hands; he doesn’t turn 18 until October after his draft year, so his stock could rise for teams based on what he does at the plate. Lantigua is another ultra young 2025 also turning 18 in October of his draft year, slick actions with strong arm and showed power with a home run in the fall at the Minority Baseball Prospects All-American games. Melendez has smooth actions, good body control and hand-eye coordination that’s an asset both in the field and at the plate. Clauss plays with an ease of operation at shortstop and in the batter’s box, with a chance for everything to tick up as he continues to layer on more strength. 

Best Defensive Outfielder

  1. Anthony Pack Jr., OF, California (Texas)
  2. Wade Shelley, OF, Alabama (Auburn)
  3. Everett Johnson, OF, North Carolina (NC State)
  4. Cannon Goldin, OF, Georgia (Mississippi)
  5. Griffin Enis, OF, Mississippi (Mississippi)

Pack is a quick-burst athlete who reacts well off the bat, using his plus speed with good instincts and routes to defend his position well in center field. Shelley is a plus runner with a quick first step who covers a lot of ground from gap to gap to make highlight catches. Johnson’s all-around baseball savvy shows up in a multitude of ways at the plate, on the basepaths and in center field, where he has good speed, range and tracks down balls with efficiency. Goldin is an athletic center fielder with plus speed, a strong arm and takes good angles to the ball. Enis is a plus-plus runner and one of the premier athletes in the country. 

Best Catcher Arm

  1. Omar Serna, C, Texas (LSU)
  2. Brady Dallimore, C, Nevada (TCU)
  3. Vincent DeCarlo, C, Florida (NC State)
  4. Quinn Schambow, C, Illinois (Oklahoma State)
  5. Trent Grindlinger, C, California (Mississippi State)

Serna has two gigantic tools between his raw power and arm strength. The sheer power he’s able to get on his throws separates his arm from anyone else in the 2025 class. Dallimore is a 6-foot-4 catcher with standout athleticism and arm strength. DeCarlo has a great mix of skills behind the plate. He looks like he could be next in line among several impressive catchers to go through North Carolina State. Schambow is an Oklahoma State commit with a strong arm he uses to control the running game and back pick runners. Grindlinger is a physical catcher at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds with a strong arm.

Best Infield Arm

  1. Carson Brumbaugh, SS, Oklahoma (Tennessee)
  2. Quentin Young, 3B, California (LSU)
  3. Mason Pike, SS, Washington (Oregon State)
  4. Billy Carlson, SS, California (Vanderbilt)
  5. Xavier Neyens, 3B, Washington (Oregon State)

Brumbaugh is up to 96 mph on the mound. While some scouts like him as a position player, he could end up a pitcher with an upper-90s fastball. At 6-foot-5, 215 pounds, Young has a cannon that will be a weapon at third base or in right field to go with his huge raw power. Pike and Carlson are both athletic two-way players. Pike is up to 95 mph on the mound, while Carlson is a premium defender at shortstop with good bat speed and contact skills. Neyens is 6-foot-4, 215 pounds with gigantic power from the left side and another standout tool with his arm, touching 93 mph as a pitcher.

Best Outfield Arm

  1. Mason Greenhouse, OF, California (Miami)
  2. Alec Blair, OF, California (Uncommitted)
  3. Dylan Dubovik, OF, Florida (Miami)
  4. Jaison Delamar, OF, Arkansas (Arkansas)
  5. Josiah Hartshorn, OF, California (Texas A&M)

Greenhouse has at least a 70 arm on the 20-80 scouting scale and could end up a true 80 tool, given his arm speed and room to fill out his 6-foot-4, 195-pound frame. Blair is a top uncommitted player for both baseball and basketball. He has huge arm strength that could also get even better once he packs more weight on to his lanky 6-foot-6 build. Dubovik has spent time at third base and the outfield, most likely fitting in the outfield in pro ball with his power and arm strength at 6-foot-4, 210 pounds. Delamar has a medium, compact build (5-foot-10, 190 pounds) also up to the low-90s on the mound. Hartshorn is a strong, high-contact hitter with a tool set for right field. 

Best Fastball

  1. Miguel Sime, RHP, New York (LSU)
  2. Seth Hernandez, RHP, California (Vanderbilt)
  3. Josh Hammond, RHP, North Carolina (Wake Forest)
  4. Brett Crossland, RHP, Arizona (Texas)
  5. Marcos Paz, RHP, Texas (LSU)

There are few pitchers in history who have ever thrown 99 mph at 16, something Sime did at the Perfect Game WWBA World Championship in October. At 6-foot-2, 225 pounds, it’s a power build with a power fastball that has good life as well. Hernandez reaches 96 mph with good movement and extension to help his fastball play up. He throws it for strikes and should have more velocity coming as he fills out his 6-foot-4 frame. Hammond dials it up to 95 mph with riding life to blow past barrels. Crossland is 6-foot-6, 245 pounds with a fastball touching 96 mph. Paz is another 95 mph arm who generates his velocity without much effort to his operation.

Best Breaking Ball

  1. Marcos Paz, RHP, Texas (LSU)
  2. Josh Hammond, RHP, North Carolina (Wake Forest)
  3. Aiden Barrientes, RHP, Texas (TCU)
  4. Jack McKernan, LHP, Texas (Texas)
  5. Talon Haley, LHP, Mississippi (Vanderbilt)

Paz is an elite pitching prospect who pairs a fastball up to 95 mph with a high-spin slider with good shape to pile up whiffs from righties and lefties. Hammond has one of the best swinging strike rates in the country. His lively fastball can get into the mid 90s, but his slider is a big swing-and-miss weapon, a potential wipeout pitch flashing plus. Barrientes has a sharp-breaking curveball with tight rotation that gets a lot of swing-and-miss. McKernan was the only underclassman for Team USA at the U-18 World Cup last year. His slider has power at 83-86 mph with good shape to miss a lot of bats. Haley has a big-breaking curveball in the mid-to-upper 70s that gives hitters fits. Honorable mention to righthanders Zion Theophilus and Marcelo Harsch, who both got a ton of swinging strikes with their sliders at Area Code Games. Righthander Cooper Fulbright can spin his breaking ball upwards of 3,000 rpm. Righthander Sawyer Deering can also touch 3,000 rpm with a hard curveball up to the low 80s.

Best Changeup

  1. Seth Hernandez, RHP, California (Vanderbilt)
  2. Angel Cervantes, RHP California (UCLA)
  3. Evan Taylor, RHP, New Jersey (Alabama)
  4. Marcos Paz, RHP, Texas (LSU)
  5. Tyler Baird, RHP, North Carolina (Vanderbilt)

Hitters have to be ready for a mid-90s fastball from Hernandez. He can also spin a good breaking ball, throw strikes and can leave hitters in awkward positions when they can’t stay back on his changeup. It’s already flashing plus with great movement and separation off his fastball. Cervantes, who will still be 17 on draft day, can reach 93 mph and sells his changeup well off his fastball to catch hitters way out front. Taylor is the rare high school pitching prospect who relies heavily on his changeup instead of his breaking ball. Hitters swung and missed on nine of the 12 changeups he threw at the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Fla. With a high-end fastball and slider, Paz is the No. 2 pitcher in the country. He also has good action on his changeup, a pitch he has confidence in to get empty swings from both lefties and righties. Like Paz, Baird is a First Team Preseason Underclass All-American, with more projection in his 6-foot-4 frame to add to a fastball up to 94 mph and the ability to turn over a good changeup against hitters from both sides.

Best Control

  1. Colt Peterson, RHP, California (Stanford)
  2. Chase Bentley, RHP, California
  3. Seth Hernandez, RHP, California (Vanderbilt)
  4. Justice De Jong, RHP, New York (Duke)
  5. Sam Cozart, RHP, North Carolina (Uncommitted)

At 6 feet, 180 pounds, Peterson has a fastball up to 91 mph, feel for a curveball and changeup, and he pounds the strike zone with all three, standing out for some of the best pitchability in the class. Bentley (6-foot-3, 220 pounds) lands his entire arsenal for consistent strikes, locating his fastball up to the low-90s to both sides of the plate. Hernandez is the top pitcher in the 2025 class thanks to great stuff as well as the athleticism that helps him repeat his delivery to throw strikes with high-end feel for pitching. A fellow Preseason First-Team Underclass All-American with Hernandez, De Jong is young for the class but is already an advanced strike-thrower with a sound delivery and a fastball touching 93 mph. Cozart is enormous (6-foot-7, 235 pounds) and while his size has jumped out from an early age, his track record of throwing strikes is one of the best in the country.

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