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  1. 1. Jordan Walker | 3B
    Jordan Walker
    Born: May 22, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'5" Wt.: 220
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Decatur, Ga., 2020 (1st round).
    Signed By: Charles Peterson.
    Minors: .317/.388/.548 | 14 HR | 14 SB | 325 AB

    BA Grade: 60/High

    Track Record: Walker used an impressive start to the 2020 spring before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the season to vault himself forward on draft boards, resulting with a selection by the Cardinals with the 21st pick in the draft. He signed for a below-slot deal of $2.9 million to forego a commitment to Duke. He then had one of the best pro debuts of any 2020 draftee, hitting his way out of Low-A Palm Beach in 2021 after 27 games and ranking as the No. 2 prospect in Low-A Southeast. He continued to hit well at High-A Peoria, where he ranked as the No. 3 prospect in High-A Central. He stood out for his combination of power and feel for hitting, thus solidifying himself as the top prospect in the organization. Walker finished the season hitting .317/.388/.548 between the Class A levels with 14 home runs, 25 doubles and 14 stolen bases in 82 games, earning the organization's minor league player of the year honors while shooting onto the Top 100 Prospects ranking.

    Scouting Report: Walker has an imposing 6-foot-5, 220-pound frame and rare strength for a teenager, crushing a ball at 116 mph off the bat in his first month as a professional. He's got a good feel for hitting and an advanced approach for the game, impressing the organization with the way he made adjustments on the fly. The length to Walker's swing produces some swing-and-miss issues, but he does a good job of catching up to velocity and has good knowledge of the strike zone. Walker hits the ball to all fields and should project for at least an average hit tool in the future to go along with plus-plus power as he matures. He posted a 15% walk rate and 17% strikeout rate at Low-A, but struggled to a 6% walk rate and 27% strikeout rate against more advanced pitchers at High-A, which is common for a young hitter facing more advanced arms. Some scouts believe he'll continue to have trouble with spin due to his aggressiveness as a hitter. However, Walker does a good job of making adjustments on the fly and rarely makes the same mistake twice. Walker is a good athlete, runs well for his size and worked hard to improve at third base. He has good footwork and above-average arm strength, but he will need to improve his instincts and reactions to stick at the hot corner. Opposing scouts are split on whether he will fit at third base, with some believing he'll end up at first base or right field, where his arm and offensive ability will profile well. Walker has an excellent work ethic, which should help give him a chance to stick at third base moving forward.

    The Future: Walker's combination of tools and performance fit the profile of a future middle-of-the-order masher who could one day hit 35 home runs in a season. After the way he performed at the Class A levels in 2021, he looks ready for an assignment to Double-A, and it's not out of the question that he could make it to Triple-A by the end of the 2022 season, setting himself up for a 2023 major league debut.

    Scouting Grades: Hit: 50. Power: 70. Speed: 45. Fielding: 45. Arm: 55.

  2. 2. Masyn Winn | SS/RHP
    Masyn Winn
    Born: Mar 21, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: HS-- Kingwood, Texas, 2020 (2nd round).
    Signed By: Jabari Barnett.
    Minors: .242/.324/.356 | 5 HR | 32 SB | 385 AB

    BA Grade: 55/High

    Track Record: Winn excelled at both shortstop and on the mound for Kingwood (Texas) High and stood out with an impressive two-way performance at the World Wood Bat Association Championships in the fall of 2019. He lost most of his senior year due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the Cardinals still drafted him 54th overall and gave him an above-slot $2.1 million signing bonus to forgo an Arkansas commitment. Winn made his pro debut in 2021 and played shortstop nearly exclusively in 97 games across both Class A levels, but he did make one appearance as a pitcher.

    Scouting Report: Winn has arguably the strongest arm of any shortstop in the majors and minors. By the middle of July he already had 15 throws across the diamond at 92 mph or harder, more than twice as many as all major league infielders combined. The Cardinals were pleased with Winn's development as a hitter at Low-A, but opposing scouts are split on whether he will hit enough to remain a position player moving forward. He does a good job staying in the middle of the field and adjusting his swing, but he struggles mightily with spin and is overly prone to chasing out of the strike zone. He'll need to work on his approach and strike-zone discipline to become even a below-average hitter, and he has below-average power. The Cardinals would like to give Winn more opportunities on the mound in 2022. His fastball sits in the mid 90s and touches 98 to go with a hard slider that flashes plus and a developing changeup.

    The Future: Winn will start the 2022 season back at High-A. He will get more opportunities to prove himself as a two-way prospect, but he is trending toward ending up a pitcher long-term.

    Scouting Grades: Hit: 40. Power: 40. Speed: 70. Fielding: 60. Arm: 80.
    Scouting Grades (Pitching): Fastball: 70. Slider: 50. Changeup: 50. Control: 40.

  3. 3. Tink Hence | RHP
    Tink Hence
    Born: Aug 6, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 175
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Pine Bluff, Ark., 2020 (2nd round supplemental).
    Signed By: Dirk Kinney.
    Minors: 0-1 | 9.00 ERA | 14 SO | 3 BB | 8 IP

    BA Grade: 55/Extreme

    August Update: Armed with a mid-90s fastball with a low release and flat vertical approach angle, Hence has flashed one of the best fastballs in the lower minors. His curveball gets heavy two-plane break and he's shown the ability to play it off of his fastball to effectively change eye levels.

    Track Record: The Cardinals drafted Hence in the supplemental second round in 2020 and signed him to an over-slot $1.15 million deal to lure him away from Arkansas. He was brought along slowly in 2021, appearing in just eight games in the Florida Complex League.

    Scouting Report: Hence saw his prospect status shoot up during his senior year after an impressive summer showcase circuit. He has a projectable body with room to fill out, and is already throwing a fastball that sits 90-93 mph and tops out at 95-96 mph from the right side. His breaking balls are his best weapons, a slider and curveball that he shows feel to spin. Both flash plus potential, and he rounds out his arsenal with a changeup that flashes average at times. The Cardinals intentionally brought Hence along slowly, wanting him to have a full season of preparation under his belt before making his full-season debut in 2022. They were encouraged by his mound presence and feel for pitching that he showed in the FCL.

    The Future: Hence has the arsenal to one day start in the major leagues, but he's years away from reaching that point. He'll make his full-season debut in 2022.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 70. Curveball: 55. Changeup: 55. Control: 50

  4. 4. Alec Burleson | OF
    Alec Burleson
    Born: Nov 25, 1998
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 212
    Drafted/Signed: East Carolina, 2020 (2nd round).
    Signed By: T.C. Calhoun.
    Minors: .270/.329/.454 | 22 HR | 3 SB | 456 AB

    BA Grade: 45/Medium

    Track Record: Burleson excelled as a two-way player throughout his college career at East Carolina, including earning a selection to the USA Baseball Collegiate National team, and was drafted by the Cardinals in the supplemental second round in 2020. He made his pro debut in 2021 and rose three levels from High-A to Triple-A, hitting a combined .270/.329/.454 with 22 home runs in 119 games.

    Scouting Report: Previously known as a contact-oriented hitter who rarely struck out, Burleson began taking bigger swings and increased his power production in his pro debut. He shows a propensity for barreling the ball and making hard contact in games, although the added power has come with more strikeouts as he's started expanding the zone. Burleson's bat path is still relatively flat, but he has a chance to add more loft to his swing and hit for even more power in the future. He should even out as an average hitter with average power. Burleson at times plays average defense in left and right field, but his arm is fringy despite his two-way background and he needs to be more consistent. He can also play first base, where he shows good footwork and actions.

    The Future: Burleson should start the 2022 season back at Triple-A. His major league debut won't be far off if he continues to swing the bat well.

    Scouting Grades: Hit: 55. Power: 55. Speed: 40. Fielding: 45. Arm: 45.

  5. 5. Gordon Graceffo | RHP
    Gordon Graceffo
    Born: Mar 17, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 210
    Signed By: Jim Negrych
    Minors: 1-0 | 1.73 ERA | 37 SO | 9 BB | 26 IP

    BA Grade: 50/High

    Track Record:: Following a freshman season at Villanova split between the bullpen and rotation, Graceffo began working as a starter full-time as a sophomore in the shortened 2020 season and put up a 1.42 ERA in four starts. He sustained that level of excellence over the full 2021 season, posting a 7-2, 1.54 mark with 86 strikeouts and 13 walks in 82 innings. The Cardinals were happy to scoop Graceffo up in the fifth round and sign him to an over-slot $500,000 deal. Graceffo jumped straight to Low-A Palm Beach after signing and posted a 1.73 ERA in 11 appearances (one start).

    Scouting Report: Graceffo started the 2021 season sitting 87-91 mph and touching 93, but by the end of the year his velocity ticked up to sit at 94 mph and was up to 98 in pro ball, and at 6-foot-4, 220 pounds he has some projection left to continue adding velocity. He commands the pitch well, pounding both sides of the strike zone. His best secondary is an upper-70s changeup with fading life and sinking action that is at least average and flashes plus. He rounds out his arsenal with a slider that is an above-average offering and a curveball with two-plane break. He also has the feel and strike-throwing ability to start, and the Cardinals were impressed by the way he constantly got into pitcher's counts.

    The Future: After having no trouble at Low-A Palm Beach, Graceffo could start the 2022 season at High-A Peoria. He projects as a back-end starter thanks to his pitch mix and strike-throwing ability.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 55. Slider: 60. Curveball: 50. Changeup: 55. Control: 55

  6. 6. Matthew Liberatore | LHP
    Matthew Liberatore
    Born: Nov 6, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'5" Wt.: 200
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Glendale, Ariz., 2018 (1st round).
    Signed By: David Hamlett (Rays).
    Minors: 9-9 | 4.04 ERA | 123 SO | 33 BB | 125 IP

    BA Grade: 50/High

    Track Record: The top prep pitcher in the 2018 draft class, Liberatore surprisingly fell in the draft before the Rays scooped him up with the 16th overall pick. He impressed in his full-season debut at Low-A in 2019 before being traded to the Cardinals in the deal that sent Randy Arozarena to Tampa Bay. The Cardinals aggressively pushed Liberatore to Triple-A to start the 2021 season despite the fact he was 21 years old and had never pitched above Low-A. He understandably struggled at the start of the season but improved as the year progressed and logged a 2.67 ERA in his final 10 starts.

    Scouting Report: Liberatore has a well-rounded four-pitch arsenal and is polished beyond his years. His fastball velocity ranges from 89-93 mph on some days to 92-96 mph on others, but it gets carry at the top of the zone with good running life at any velocity to remain an effective pitch. Liberatore throws a trio of impressive secondaries, led by an above-average, upper-70s curveball that has hard, late snap and downer action. His curveball was his clear out pitch in previous years, but it's arguably been surpassed by his above-average, low-80s slider with late, three-quarters tilt. His changeup gives him a fourth above-average offering as a low-80s pitch he sets up well and uses to finish off batters. Liberatore is a cerebral pitcher with a good feel for mixing his pitches and reading swings. His repeatable delivery and clean arm action from the left side portend at least above-average control.

    The Future: Liberatore has the pitchability and well-rounded arsenal to be a solid No. 3 starter. It shouldn't be long before he makes his big league debut in 2022.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 55. Slider: 55. Curveball: 55. Changeup: 55. Control: 55.

  7. 7. Ivan Herrera | C
    Ivan Herrera
    Born: Jun 1, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: Panama, 2016.
    Signed By: Damaso Espino.
    Minors: .229/.342/.403 | 17 HR | 2 SB | 367 AB

    BA Grade: 50/High

    Track Record: Herrera signed with the Cardinals for $200,000 when he was 16 and immediately became one of the most productive hitters in their system. He spent 2020 spring training learning under Yadier Molina's tutelage and was invited to the Cardinals alternate training site in the summer. Herrera jumped to Double-A in 2021 and experienced his first offensive struggles with a career-worst .229/.342/.403 slash line, but he still hit 17 home runs and earned a promotion to Triple-A Memphis for his last game of the season.

    Scouting Report: Known for his above-average hitting ability, Herrera has a compact swing and makes solid contact. He has a good approach at the plate and does a good job of controlling the strike zone with low chase rates. Herrera posts low exit velocities and doesn't hit the ball very hard with fringe-average power, but he makes so much contact he is still able to pick up extra-base hits. Herrera's defense behind the plate is further behind. His receiving regressed during the coronavirus shutdown and he struggled with drops throughout the 2021 season. At his best, Herrera flashes good hands, moves well and has average arm strength, but he has long demonstrated a lack of focus and intensity that prevents him from performing up to his capabilities of being an above-average defender.

    Scouting Grades:Hit: 55. Power: 45. Speed: 30. Fielding: 55. Arm: 50.

  8. 8. Cooper Hjerpe | LHP
    Cooper Hjerpe
    Born: Mar 16, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 0'0"
    Signed By: Chris Rodriguez/Donnie Marbut

    BA Grade: 50/High

    August Update: Ten years ago, a player like Hjerpe likely would have been viewed as much less impressive than he is in 2022—even as one of the best starting pitchers in college baseball. A 6-foot-3, 200-pound lefthander, Hjerpe has dominated this spring and posted a 2.45 ERA over 16 starts and 95.2 innings, while striking out 39.7% of batters faced and walking just 5.3%. He's dominated every lineup he's faced despite throwing a fastball that averages just 90-91 mph. The key to Hjerpe's success is a unique, 52-54-inch release height created by a sidearm slot that makes everything he throws play up. His vertical approach angle is elite, and while Hjerpe touches just 94-95 mph at peak, he generates plenty of whiffs with his fastball, especially at the top of the zone. When hitters do make contact, he has been difficult to elevate and allowed just three home runs this spring through those 95.2 innings of work. Entering the year, scouts questioned Hjerpe's secondaries, and his lower arm slot made some evaluators wonder if he would ever be able to get to a consistent breaking pitch, but his secondaries have improved this spring. His slider is a fringy and slower breaking ball in the upper 70s that gets whiffs more because of his unique angle than the shape and velocity of the pitch, but that has still meant a close to 50% whiff rate. His upper-70s changeup gets average to above-average grades and does have plenty of velocity separation from his fastball. On top of excellent deception, Hjerpe is a refined and polished strike thrower who has above-average command (his 7.50 strikeout-to-walk ratio was a top-20 rate among Division I arms) that should be more than enough to profile in a back-of-the-rotation starting role. It wouldn't be a surprise if some teams liked the idea of putting Hjerpe in the bullpen, where he could move quickly, and where his unique release point and arm angle would be a nightmare for hitters. Hjepre was selected with the 22nd overall pick and signed for $3,182,200.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 60. Slider: 50. Changeup: 55. Control: 60.

  9. 9. Michael McGreevy | RHP
    Michael McGreevy
    Born: Jul 8, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 215
    Signed By: Michael Garciaparra.
    Minors: 0-2 | 9.39 ERA | 7 SO | 2 BB | 8 IP

    BA Grade: 50/High

    Track Record: McGreevy made an immediate impact at UC Santa Barbara by earning freshman All-America honors as a reliever in 2019 and posting a 0.99 ERA in four starts in 2020 before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the season. He built on that success and solidified himself as the best pitcher on the West Coast during his junior season, posting a 2.92 ERA with 115 strikeouts and only 11 walks in 101.2 innings. The Cardinals drafted him 18th overall and signed him for $2.75 million. McGreevy made seven starts split between the Florida Complex League and Low-A Palm Beach after he signed, throwing no more than two innings in any outing.

    Scouting Report: McGreevy is a control artist who also happens to have four above-average or better pitches. His fastball sits in the low 90s and tops out at 96 mph. The pitch plays up with armside sink and finish, and he is able to effectively locate it to both sides of the plate. McGreevy's curveball is his most effective secondary offering as a top-to-bottom hammer that flashes plus. He rounds out his four-pitch mix with a mid-80s slider and a changeup that flash above-average as well. McGreevy ties everything together with plus-plus control. He floods the strike zone with all of his pitches and his few misses are very small. McGreevy is an excellent athlete with a strong, durable build at 6-foot-4, 200 pounds and still has some projection remaining.

    The Future: McGreevy has all the ingredients to be a mid-rotation starter. He should start the season at High-A and could move quickly.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 55. Curveball: 60. Slider: 50. Changeup: 50. Control: 70.

  10. 10. Jonathan Mejia | SS
    Jonathan Mejia
    Born: Apr 12, 2005
    Bats: S Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 185

    BA Grade: 55/Extreme

    Track Record: One of the early standouts in the 2021 international class, Mejia impressed scouts with his offensive upside as an amateur in the Dominican Republic, with the Cardinals building their class around him when he signed on Jan. 15, 2022.

    Scouting Report: Mejia is an aggressive hitter who swings to do damage, generating impressive bat speed from both sides of the plate. It' s a sound swing from both sides and he generally stays under control, showing the ability to drive the ball for hard contact to the opposite field, with the potential to grow into 20-plus home run power. Mejia is an offensive-oriented player who has improved his footwork, but will need to continue making progress there to be able to stick at shortstop. He' s a high-energy player who could fit at second or third base, with his arm and speed both grading out average.

    The Future: Mejia is one of the most exciting hitters the Cardinals have signed out of the Dominican Republic in recent years. His first test in pro ball should come in the Dominican Summer League in 2022.

    Scouting Grades: Hit: 55. Power: 60. Speed: 50. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

  11. 11. Joshua Baez | OF
    Joshua Baez
    Born: Jun 28, 2003
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 220
    Signed By: Jim Negrych.
    Minors: .158/.305/.303 | 2 HR | 5 SB | 76 AB

    BA Grade: 55/Extreme

    Track Record: Baez impressed on the high school summer showcase circuit with an impressive array of tools and a physical, 6-foot-3, 220-pound frame. He struggled with strikeouts during his high school senior season, but the Cardinals still drafted him with the 54th overall pick and gave him an over-slot $2.25 million signing bonus to forgo a Vanderbilt commitment. Baez reported to the Florida Complex League after signing and showed off his big tools, but he also hit .158 with 28 strikeouts in 95 plate appearances.

    Scouting Report: Baez has impressive bat speed and plus-plus raw power, but there are questions surrounding his ability to hit. He has some stiffness in his swings and a hand drop that hurts his ability to adapt to different velocities. Baez played center field in high school, but he's likely to slow down as he matures and will need to move to a corner, where he profiles as an above-average defender who makes good reads and takes good routes. He has a plus-plus arm and touched 98 mph on the mound as a high school senior. The Cardinals believe he will improve as a hitter as he gets more at-bats under his belt. Baez was one of the youngest players in the draft and didn't turn 18 until the end of June.

    The Future: Baez is a high-risk, high-reward player. He has the strength and physicality to dream about him hitting 30-plus home runs in the major leagues, but he'll need to make significantly more contact to get to that point. He'll likely start the 2022 season at Low-A.

    Scouting Grades: Hit: 40. Power: 70. Speed: 40. Fielding: 55. Arm: 70.

  12. 12. Zack Thompson | LHP
    Zack Thompson
    Born: Oct 28, 1997
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 225
    Drafted/Signed: Kentucky, 2019 (1st round).
    Signed By: Jason Bryans.
    Minors: 2-10 | 7.06 ERA | 82 SO | 57 BB | 93 IP

    BA Grade: 45/High

    Track Record: After a dominant junior season at Kentucky the Cardinals drafted Thompson in the first round in 2019, and he made 11 appearances out of the bullpen at High-A Palm Beach after signing. He stood out in 2020 at spring training, then spent the summer at the alternate training site. Thompson made his upper minors debut at Triple-A Memphis in 2021, where he struggled mightily, proving to be far too hittable and posting 5.5 walks per nine innings and a 7.06 ERA.

    Scouting Report: Thompson previously stood out for his loud arsenal, including a fastball that sat 91-94 mph and topped out at 97, but opposing scouts watched as his velocity backed up significantly early in the 2021 season. He sat 87-88 mph with big running life and pitched with restriction in his shoulder. Thompson's velocity began to pick up as the season progressed, and he was back to sitting 91-94 mph in the Arizona Fall League, where he struck out 22 batters over 17.1 innings of work. His slider sat in the low 80s in the AFL with a low spin rate and flat break, and his plus curveball had high spin rates exceeding 3,000 rpm. However, the curve has very little power, sitting 69-72 mph. Thompson rounds out his arsenal with a changeup that flashes average. Thompson has struggled with his below-average control at times, and it's imperative that he throws more consistent strikes, especially if his velocity continues to fluctuate.

    The Future: Thompson once looked like a mid-rotation arm, but the 2021 season was a step in the wrong direction. He'll head back to Triple-A Memphis in 2022, where he'll look to regain his velocity and improve his strike-throwing ability.

    Scouting Grades: Fastball: 55. Slider: 45. Curveball: 55. Changeup: 50. Control: 50

  13. 13. Inohan Paniagua | RHP
    Inohan Paniagua
    Born: Feb 6, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 148
    Minors: 4-1 | 3.88 ERA | 62 SO | 19 BB | 47 IP

    BA Grade: 45/High

    Track Record: Signed out of the Dominican Republic in December of 2017, Paniagua had a strong showing with Palm Beach in 2021, coming out of the 2020 pandemic, making 16 appearances and spending time as a starter and reliever. Reassigned to Palm Beach out of camp this spring Paniagua has converted to starting full-time, and has made 15 starts for Palm Beach in 2022.

    Scouting Report: An easy and athletic operation that Paniagua repeats well. He delivers the ball from a low-three quarters slot and slings in a fastball, curveball, and changeup. His fastball sits 90-93 mph, with a sinker and four-seam variations on his fastball, using the sinker more frequently against righthanded hitters almost in lieu of his changeup in right on right matchups. He commands both fastball variants well, and uses each to setup his high quality secondaries. His changeup is a low-to-mid-80s pitch that mirrors the movement of Paniagua's sinker, while his curveball is a slurvy mid-to-high-70s breaking ball with two-plane break and spin rates in 2500-2600 rpm range. He shows advanced feel for sequencing, mixing in all four pitches regardless of the handedness of the opposing batter. Paniagua has a strong mix of strikes, feel to pitch, and secondary quality that portend success as a starter long term.

    The Future: While Paniagua lacks the big stuff often associated with top pitching prospects, the righthander shows an advanced understanding of pitching and who he is as a pitcher. With the ability to throw strikes across his arsenal and vary looks on his fastball Paniagua has a chance to be a solid backend of the rotation innings eater.

  14. 14. Brycen Mautz | LHP
    Brycen Mautz
    Born: Jul 17, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 0'0"

    BA Grade: 45/High

    August Update: Mautz spent his first two seasons bouncing between the rotation and bullpen at San Diego before moving into the rotation full-time this spring. He quickly took to the role and tied for the West Coast Conference lead in wins (nine) while finishing second in strikeouts (124) during the regular season. His signature moment came during regionals when he dominated Vanderbilt with seven innings and one run allowed to lead the Toreros to an upset victory. Mautz is a deceptive lefthander who slings in his 90-93 mph fastball from a low arm slot. His fastball plays up with deception and angle and gets swings and misses when he locates it, but it gets hit when he misses his spots. Mautz's sweeping, lows-80s slider is an above-average pitch that annihilates lefthanded hitters and gets in enough on righthanded hitters to neutralize them. It's a consistent out pitch he can both land for strikes or get chase swings on. His mid-80s changeup is well below-average and is not a significant part of his arsenal. Mautz's control has been inconsistent in the past but improved to fringe-average this year. He throws exclusively from the stretch and has some effort to his delivery. Mautz primarily projects as a reliever with his delivery, control and two-pitch mix, but he had enough success as a starter this year for teams to give him a chance to start. Mautz signed with the Cardinals for $1,100,000 in the second round last year.

  15. 15. Pete Hansen | LHP
    Pete Hansen
    Born: Jul 28, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: L
    Ht.: 0'0"
    Signed By: Joseph Quezada

    BA Grade: 45/High

    August Update: In a draft sorely lacking in college starting pitchers with a lengthy track record of success, Hansen is an outlier. Coming into the College World Series, Hansen had made 30 starts over the past two seasons, going 22-3, 2.47 with only 151 hits allowed in 194.1 innings. He struck out 195 while walking 42. Performance-wise, there's nothing to critique. He worked five or more innings in 15 of 16 starts as Texas' ace. But Hansen's somewhat pedestrian stuff keeps him from climbing into first round consideration. Hansen did throw harder in 2022 than he did in 2021, but that only got his fastball into the 87-91 mph range with sporadic flashes of 92-95. Hansen's fastball is at this moment a fringe-average pitch at best. In addition to its below-average velocity, it lacks exceptional movement. But he spots it with pinpoint, plus command. His above-average low-80s slider is effective because he never catches the heart of the plate with it. It lives just on that edge of the zone down and in to righties and low and away to lefties. He also has pinpoint control of his average changeup, and he'll mix in a slower mid-70s below-average curveball as an early count surprise strike. Hansen's lack of velocity could derail him in pro ball, but if he can add more, his plus command, advanced feel and durability could make him a valuable back-of-the-rotation starter.

  16. 16. Austin Love | RHP
    Austin Love
    Born: Jan 26, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 232
    Signed By: T.C. Calhoun
    Minors: 0-0 | 1.12 ERA | 13 SO | 1 BB | 8 IP

    BA Grade: 45/High

    Track Record: Love worked as a full-time reliever in his first two seasons at North Carolina in 2019 and 2020, but transitioned to the starting rotation for the 2021 season. He put up impressive numbers in 2021 while his draft stock shot up significantly. The Cardinals scooped him up in the third round of the July draft, and Love made seven appearances between the Florida Complex League and Low-A Palm Beach after signing. He allowed one earned run in eight innings.

    Scouting Report: Love uses a fastball that sat 91-94 mph as a starter and topped out at 97-98 mph. He has a pair of offspeed offerings that flash above-average, with a mid-80s slider with vertical break and a mid-80s changeup with fade and tumble. Love stood out to Cardinals officials after signing for the way he competed and his ability to command his three-pitch mix. Some opposing scouts feel Love profiles better in the bullpen, where his fastball would play up, but the Cardinals plan to use him as a starter.

    The Future: Love has the pitch mix and control to profile as a back-end starter, but he could also become a high-leverage reliever.

  17. 17. Max Rajcic | RHP
    Max Rajcic
    Born: Aug 3, 2001
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 0'0"
    Signed By: Mike Garciaparra

    BA Grade: 45/High

    August Update: Rajcic became famous as the ace of national prep power Orange (Calif.) Lutheran High and was the top starter on USA Baseball's 18U National Team that won a silver medal at the 2019 18U World Cup in South Korea. He served as UCLA's closer as a freshman and pitched well as a starter in the Cape Cod League before taking over as the Bruins' No. 1 starter this spring. Rajcic is a cerebral, polished righthander whose control and feel for pitching make up for a lack of pure stuff. His fastball sits 90-91 mph, touches 94 and is a hittable pitch when he doesn't locate it precisely. His fastball mainly serves to set up his above-average, low-80s power curveball with vertical break and solid depth. His low-to-mid-80s changeup is an average offering he's comfortable throwing to both righties and lefties. None of Rajcic's offerings stand out in a vacuum, but he fills up the strike zone with plus control and mixes and matches to keep hitters guessing. He limits walks and is efficient with his pitch count to last deep into games. Rajcic is more solid than exciting, but he knows how to pitch and has a long track record of success. He projects to be a useful depth starter or long reliever.

  18. 18. Dionys Rodriguez | RHP
    Dionys Rodriguez
    Born: Sep 3, 2000
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 188
    Signed By: Braly Guzman/Angel Ovalles
    Minors: 4-5 | 3.36 ERA | 88 SO | 22 BB | 70 IP

    BA Grade: 45/High

    Track Record: Signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2018, Rodriguez spent his first two seasons in the Dominican Summer League in 2018 and 2019, putting up uninspiring numbers while working exclusively out of the bullpen. Rodriguez, who wasn't at the Cardinals alternate training site in 2020, started the 2021 campaign back in the bullpen for Low-A Palm Beach, but quickly transitioned to the rotation after dominating hitters in June. He made 12 starts to close out the season, finishing with a 4-5, 3.36 mark and 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings.

    Scouting Report: When Rodriguez signed he topped out at just 89-90 mph, but since then he's filled out some and added strength, with his fastball reaching 97 mph out of the bullpen and sitting 92-94 mph as a starter. The fastball misses bats at an above-average rate. He has a good feel for pitching and solid command of his arsenal, especially his cutter, which opposing scouts feel projects as a plus pitch. Rodriguez rounds out his arsenal with a changeup, although it's a clear third pitch currently. Rodriguez throws consistent strikes, projecting for average control, and is competitive on the mound. Some opposing scouts are skeptical he can remain a starter without a quality third pitch.

    The Future: Rodriguez will look to repeat upon his impressive season at Low-A Palm Beach when he moves to High-A Peoria in 2022. He's likely to end up in the bullpen, where his fastball and cutter give him two quality weapons.

  19. 19. Alec Willis | RHP
    Alec Willis
    Born: Mar 30, 2003
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'5" Wt.: 220
    Signed By: Mauricio Rubio
    Minors: 0-0 | 0.00 ERA | 1 SO | 0 BB | 1 IP

    BA Grade: 50/Extreme

    Track Record:: After missing the 2020 summer showcase campaign due to ulnar decompression that led to surgery, Willis shot on to the scene with an outstanding performance during his senior high school season that led his draft stock to rise significantly. The Cardinals drafted him in the seventh round in 2021, and he appeared in one Florida Complex League game after signing.

    Scouting Report: Willis has a powerful build at 6-foot-5, 220 pounds with projection remaining for him to gain additional velocity to a fastball that sits in the low 90s and tops out at 96 mph. He pairs his fastball with a trio of secondary pitches that all project to be average or better. His low-80s slider is the best of the three, a future plus pitch. He also throws a mid-70s curveball and a mid-80s changeup, which is a clear fourth offering. Willis projects for solid-average control, and he has good arm speed and a smooth, balanced delivery.

    The Future: Willis has the upside of a future big league starter, but he's years away from that point. He'll make his full-season debut in 2022.

  20. 20. Jake Walsh | RHP
    Jake Walsh
    Born: Jul 20, 1995
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 192
    Signed By: Mike DiBlase
    Minors: 2-2 | 2.86 ERA | 34 SO | 8 BB | 22 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: Walsh has pitched well at every level he's encountered, working as a starter in 2018 and posting a sub-3.00 ERA between the Class A levels before missing the majority of the 2019 season after having Tommy John surgery. He returned in 2021 as a full-time reliever, posting a 1.50 ERA in 13 appearances at Double-A Springfield before a late-season promotion to Triple-A Memphis. He finished the season in the Arizona Fall League, where he struggled in 11 appearances.

    Scouting Report: Walsh overpowered hitters at the Double-A level with a fastball that sat 96 mph and touched 100 mph. The pitch has riding life up in the zone and he threw it for a strike 69% of the time in 2021. He pairs the pitch with a big, downer curveball, a swing-and-miss weapon that projects as above-average. There's some stiffness in Walsh's operation, and some opposing scouts weren't convinced by his feel for pitching, though he is a solid strike thrower. The Cardinals stated their confidence in Walsh by adding him to the 40-man roster after the season ended.

    The Future: Thanks to his two-pitch mix, Walsh profiles as a solid middle reliever. He'll likely make his big league debut in 2022.

  21. 21. Ian Bedell | RHP
    Ian Bedell
    Born: Sep 5, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 198
    Drafted/Signed: Missouri, 2020 (4th round).
    Signed By: Dirk Kinney.
    Minors: 0-1 | 10.12 ERA | 4 SO | 2 BB | 3 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: Following freshman and sophomore campaigns spent in the Missouri bullpen Bedell broke out with the Wareham Gatemen of the Cape Cod League over the summer of 2019. Bedell made six starts for Wareham that summer compiling a 0.59 ERA with 36 strikeouts to 3 walks over 30.2 innings. He performed well in his four starts as a member of Missouri's rotation before the 2020 season was cut short due to the pandemic. He was assigned to High-A Peoria out of camp last spring, but his season was cut short after two starts, as Bedell tore his UCL and underwent Tommy John surgery.

    Scouting Report: Prior to the injury Bedell deployed a three-pitch mix consisting of a low-90s four-seam fastball, a slurvy low-80s curveball with two-plane break, and a mid-80s changeup. He succeeded due to a feel for the entirety of his arsenal showing the ability to land all three pitches for strikes and keeping hitters off balance, with the ability to throw any of his pitches in any count. Bedell faced live at bats in March and the organization has taken it purposely slow with his return.

    The Future: With a high level of pitchability and perhaps more projection in his velocity across his arsenal Bedell has a chance to be a backend of the rotation arm, but likely settles in as starter depth for a competitive team.

  22. 22. Zane Mills | RHP
    Zane Mills
    Born: Jul 4, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 220
    Signed By: Chris Rodriguez
    Minors: 0-0 | 1.17 ERA | 9 SO | 0 BB | 8 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: Undrafted out of high school, Mills struggled in his first season at Washington State in 2019, had an encouraging showing in the West Coast League the following summer, broke out in 2020 and posted solid, if unspectacular, numbers in 2021 before being selected by the Cardinals in the fourth round. Mills made seven appearances in the Florida Complex League after signing, striking out nine and walking none in 7.2 innings.

    Scouting Report: Mills has good size at 6-foot-4, 220 pounds from the right side with projection remaining and a smooth, easy delivery. His fastball sits 89-92 mph with two-seam action, and he pairs it with a slider. While neither pitch projects to be more than average, he has plus command of each offering. He does a good job of mixing his pitches and attacking both sides of the plate. He rounds out his arsenal with a solid-average changeup. What Mills doesn't offer in stuff, he makes up for in his feel for pitching and strike-throwing ability. Scouts who watched him in college were impressed by his pitchability and polish, which should allow him to continue starting at the professional level.

    The Future: Mills should make his full-season debut in 2022, and it wouldn't be surprising to see the Cardinals aggressively push him through the system given his polish. He projects as a back-end starter.

  23. 23. Freddy Pacheco | RHP
    Freddy Pacheco
    Born: Apr 17, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 203
    Minors: 1-0 | 3.67 ERA | 95 SO | 29 BB | 54 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: Signed out of Venezuela in 2017, Pacheco first popped up in Peoria in 2019, striking out 90 batters over 54.2 innings. He showed improvements to his command coming out of 2020, substantially slashing his walk rate during a 2021 season that saw him rise three levels of the minors to Triple-A making 41 appearances, striking out 95 batters to 29 walks over 54 innings. Reassigned to Double-A out of camp, Pahceco was promoted to Memphis in late June.

    Scouting Report: A high-powered arsenal led by a mid-90s fastball with spin rates in the 2400-2500 rpm range, with plus vertical ride and late life. He plays a tight mid-80s slider off of his fastball, and generates swings and misses on both pitches, but uses the slider as his primary out pitch. He'll flash a changeup in the high-80s but it's a very minimal part of his arsenal. He's a one pitch reliever with a high powered one-two punch in his slider and fastball.

    The Future: A potential high-leverage arm that should settle into a middle relief role in the coming years. He's handled high-leverage situations in the minors and has the fastball power and quality for the role, the only question is his lack of a true wipeout breaking ball.

  24. 24. Packy Naughton | LHP
    Packy Naughton
    Born: Apr 16, 1996
    Bats: R Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 195
    Drafted/Signed: Virginia Tech, 2017 (9th round).
    Signed By: Jeff Brookens (Reds).
    Minors: 2-2 | 4.90 ERA | 55 SO | 14 BB | 61 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: A ninth-rounder by the Reds in 2017 out of Virginia Tech, Naughton worked his way up to Double-A heading into 2020. The Reds traded Naughton to the Angels along with a player to be named later for Brian Goodwin. He made his major league debut in August of the following year making seven appearances for the Angels over the final months of the 2021 season. He was designated for assignment by the Angels in March and claimed off of waiver by the Cardinals.

    Scouting Report: Naughton is the classic up and down starter at this point in his career filling in at the major league level for two organizations over the last two seasons. He features a three-pitch mix with two fastball variations that sit 91-93 mph touching 95 mph at peak, a short slider at 78-80 mph, and changeup at 83-84 mph he shows advanced feel for. Naughton shows the ability to land all of his pitches for strikes and his changeup might grade out as above-average. While his stuff isn't overpowering Naughton knows how to pitch and can fill-in at a variety of roles out of the pen or in the rotation.

    The Future: A utility arm if there ever was one, Naughton can fill-in as a spot starter in a pinch, go multiple innings in the pen, or work as a one inning type reliever. He may lack the quality stuff to ever establish himself in a permanent role, but he has value on a major league 40-man roster.

  25. 25. Leonardo Bernal | C
    Leonardo Bernal
    Born: Feb 13, 2004
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 200

    BA Grade: 45/Extreme

    Track Record: One of the Cardinals top signings during the 2020-21 international signing period. Bernal was the top player in Panama and drew Wilson Ramos comparisons at the time of signing.

    Scouting Report: Bernal debuted in the Dominican Summer League in 2021 and showed bat-to-ball skills and projectable power as well as advanced catching skills. He skipped the Florida Complex League and instead was assigned to Low-A Palm Beach where he's shown an increase in swing and miss and some aggressive swing decisions. He's also shown some power in games but his approach has often limited his impact. He's a strong receiver who moves well behind the plate, and should have little trouble sticking at the position.

    The Future: A talented all-around catcher tasked with a difficult assignment out of extended spring training. How Bernal adjusts over the coming months will paint a clearer picture of what he needs to work on in the coming years.

  26. 26. Won-Bin Cho | OF
    Won-Bin Cho
    Born: Aug 20, 2003
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 200

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: The Cardinals signed Cho at 18 when the 2021-22 international signing period opened on Jan. 15, 2022, making the Korean outfielder the first Asian amateur signing in franchise history.

    Scouting Report: Cho has a fluid, easy stroke from the left side. It' s an adjustable stroke with good bat control, allowing him to square balls up for a high contact rate and go the opposite way when he' s pitched on the outer third. Cho mostly shows power to the alleys now, but he has the strength projection in his 6-foot-3 frame to grow into more power. That will be key for Cho, who' s around an average runner and can play center field for now, but could end up shifting over to a corner.

    The Future: Cho has an intriguing offensive profile, with encouraging early looks at camp in Florida. He will make his pro debut in 2022.

  27. 27. Connor Thomas | LHP
    Connor Thomas
    Born: May 29, 1998
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 173
    Signed By: Charles Peterson
    Minors: 6-6 | 3.39 ERA | 116 SO | 33 BB | 122 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: The 2019 fifth-rounder from Georgia Tech arrived in the short-season New York-Penn League after signing, making five appearances (two starts) before a promotion to Low-A Peoria. He spent the 2020 shutdown at home and made his upper minors debut in 2021. Thomas made four starts at Double-A Springfield before the Cardinals sent him to Triple-A Memphis, where he pitched to a 6-4, 3.10 mark while showing impressive command of his three-pitch mix.

    Scouting Report: Thomas won't wow anyone with his arsenal, which includes two fastball variations that sit 90-91 mph. One is a below-average offering, while the other has natural sinking life and is an average pitch. His plus command allows his stuff to play up. Thomas pairs his fastballs with a plus slider and an above-average changeup. He induces ground balls with all of his pitches, with a 50% or higher groundball rate on each offering. Coming out of college there were concerns that Thomas' modest arsenal would cause him to struggle against better competition, but he's pitched well at every stop in the minor leagues. In addition to having plus command, Thomas has above-average control.

    The Future: Thomas could be in line to make his major league debut after conquering Triple-A in 2021. He'll likely never be a full-time starter, but he provides value as a long reliever and spot starter.

  28. 28. Chandler Redmond | 2B/1B
    Chandler Redmond
    Born: Jan 9, 1997
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 231
    Signed By: TC Calhoun
    Minors: .259/.354/.474 | 18 HR | 3 SB | 344 AB

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: Redmond was signed for $3,000 in the 32nd round of the 2019 draft out of Gardner-Webb after hitting .309/.412/.660 with 18 home runs his senior season with the Bulldogs. He reached Double-A Springfield in his first full professional season, hitting a combined .259/.354/.474 with 18 home runs and 20 doubles.

    Scouting Report: A barrel chested, broad shouldered slugger, Redmond has developed at the plate over the last two seasons, first as a lefthanded slugger with a three true outcomes profile to a more refined power hitter with multi-positional flexibility defensively. While he' s neither rangy or athletic, Redmond is an instinctual defender with good actions who can handle second and third base, but his long-term position lies at first base due to his limited range. He boasts some of the best exit velocity data in the Cardinals system with the ability to barrel up consistently. He' s cut his in-zone whiff substantially year over year, and has shown noticeable improvements to his approach.

    The Future: Due to heavy strong-side platoon splits, Redmond looks the part of a part-time player at first base. His ability to hit for power and measurable improvements since turning pro leave some hope that Redmond can develop into a second division regular type or power-hitting platoon DH.

  29. 29. Ryan Loutos | RHP
    Ryan Loutos
    Born: Jan 29, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 215
    Signed By: Julia Prusaczyk
    Minors: 1-2 | 5.56 ERA | 26 SO | 6 BB | 23 IP

    BA Grade: 40/High

    Track Record: A four-year starter at Division III Washington University in St. Louis, Loutos was signed last summer as a nondrafted free agent and assigned to Palm Beach. Loutos has power stuff with a fastball that touches 98 mph and it has translated to early success as a professional. A relief-only prospect, Loutos has climbed three levels of the minors in his first full season, reaching Triple-A Memphis in early July.

    Scouting Report: Loutos' four-seam fastball sits 94-96 mph, touching 97-98 mph at peak with late bite. He creates deception with a long-arm action and elongated rockback before delivering the ball with a fast arm and a high-effort operation. He shows two different breaking ball shapes, both in the low 80s, with a sweepy slider and a downer curveball with 11-5 shape. His slider projects better long term than his curveball as the latter has a loopy shape making it easier to identify out of the hand.

    The Future: With a limited track record against high-quality competition, Loutos has shown a remarkable ability to adapt to upper-level hitting. His fastball power and pair of heavy-moving breaking balls give Loutos the foundation of a potential bullpen piece long term.

  30. 30. Jimmy Crooks | C
    Jimmy Crooks
    Born: Jul 19, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 210
    Signed By: Pete Parise

    BA Grade: 40/High

    August Update: The lefthanded-hitting backstop has contributed in a big way not just behind the plate but on the offensive side as well for Oklahoma. With a batting average over .300 accompanied with 20 doubles and nine home runs heading into CWS championship play, Crooks is a threat for damage every time he stands in the box. An aggressive swinger, Crooks’ bat path is more pull-oriented with lift involved. There’s plenty of bat speed present to handle velocity and he also has success against breaking pitches, as displayed against Texas A&M in Omaha when he belted two home runs to the pull side. Crooks has a solid, durable frame at 6-foot, 218 pounds. He’s agile behind the plate, making difficult blocks. He backs that up with an average arm, but his quick release assists in his ability to contain an aggressive running game. Crooks signed for $470,300 in the fourth round.

View Players 11-30

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