The 2013 MLB draft is less than four months away. The high school season is just underway, and while this list will surely change as the season goes on, here are my top 50 high school prospects as of today.
1. Clint Frazier, OF, Loganville HS (GA)
Plus/plus bat speed, plus speed (6.42/60), plus arm (98 mph), power to all fields and a very high character make the 6’-1”, 200-pound right-hander number-one on my list. He hit .424 with 24 home runs and stole 14 bases over 114 at-bats as a junior. Draws comps to Mike Trout for his style of play. Has hit three home runs in his first two games of the season.
2. Austin Meadows, OF, Grayson HS (GA)
At 6’-4” and 200 pounds, the left-hander already has a major league body. A true five-tool talent, his plus speed, plus arm and instincts should allow him to stick at center field. Great bat speed allows him to hit the ball all over the field and the power potential is huge. Like best friend Frazier, he has a great make up and high understanding of the game.
3. Jonathan Denney, C, Yukon HS (OK)
At 6’-2” and 205 pounds, the right-hander has some of the best power in the draft, and his defense is good enough to keep him behind the plate. Has been one of the most impressive prep players over the last year and, in a draft loaded with prep catchers, has very few holes on either side of the plate.
4. Dominic Smith, 1B/OF, Serra HS (CA)
In my opinion, Smith is the best pure hitter in the draft. Over his 77-game high school career, he is hitting .568 with 14 home runs, 126 RBI, 29 stolen bases and has fanned just 13 times. He recently went 10-for-13 with four walks and two stolen bases at the MLK Tournament sponsored by Perfect Game, garnering MVP honors. The 6’-1”, 190-pound left-hander has an incredible batting eye and more power should come as he matures. If he can stick at a corner outfield position, his value goes way up.
5. Trey Ball, LHP/OF, New Castle Chrysler HS (TX)
At 6’-6”, the southpaw hits the low/mid 90s with an easy delivery and there is still room for more. He adds a low-80s slider and change-up but both are still inconsistent at times. A great athlete, his future should be on the mound despite his potential on offense.
6. Reese McGuire, C, Kentwood HS (WA)
Left-handed hitting catchers, who also happen to be plus defenders, are always at a premium. McGuire fits that bill as the 6’-1”, 190-pound backstop is arguably the best defensive catcher in the draft. He showed his offensive potential as a member of U18 Team USA last fall, hitting .462 (12-for-26) with four doubles, 11 RBI, eight walks and a .583 OBP over nine games as Team USA won the gold in Seoul, South Korea.
7. J.P. Crawford, SS, Lakewood HS (CA)
The best all-around shortstop in the draft, the 6’-2”, 185-pound left-hander sprays the ball to all fields with his above-average bat speed and has an advanced feel for the strike zone. Over his 99 career high school games, he has hit .408 with 28 doubles, 12 triples, one home run, 68 RBI and has struck out just 25 times. He also has gone 56-for-61 in stolen base attempts. Soft hands, great range and a strong arm make him a solid bet to stick at his position despite worries about him outgrowing it.8. Jordan Sheffield, RHP, Tullahoma HS (TN)
The 6’-3”, 195-pound right-hander may have the best fastball in the draft, easily hitting the mid 90s with room for more as he matures. He also adds a hammer curve to go along with a developing slider that has plus potential. Over 49.2 innings last season, he had a 0.99 ERA and 73 K/24 BB while only allowing 21 hits.
9. Oscar Mercado, SS, Gaither HS (FL)
The slick-fielding shortstop is arguably the best defensive shortstop in the draft, and he also can hit a little, too. His above-average bat speed allows him to spray the ball to all fields, and he has enough speed to be a threat on the base paths. As a junior, he hit .370 over 29 games with eight extra-base hits, 29 RBI and was 11-for-11 in stolen bases.
10. Kohl Stewart, RHP, St. Pius X HS (TX)
The 6’-3’, right-hander has a fastball that can touch 97 mph, as well a devastating mid-80s slider and developing change-up. A great athlete who has a scholarship to play quarterback at Texas A&M, there is still a lot of projection once he starts focusing full-time on baseball.
11. Rob Kaminsky, LHP, St. Joseph HS (NJ)
An electric southpaw whose fastball can touch 95 mph, he also adds a hammer curve that sits in the mid 70s. His change-up is still developing but is already a solid pitch. He has great control and can be unhittable at times. Went 8-2 as a junior with 103 K/20 BB over 53 innings, allowing just 12 hits including three no-hitters.
12. Jonah Wesely, LHP, Tracy HS (CA)
Owner of a plus curveball that sits in the mid 70s, Wesely trimmed down this year and is relying more on his low/mid-90s fastball to overpower hitters and impress scouts. Over the last two years, he has struck out 184 batters over 96.2 innings, allowing just 27 hits. A workhorse pitcher with great stuff, as well as great command.
13. Ryan Boldt, OF, Red Wing HS (MN)
A leadoff-type hitter with great speed (6.41/60), the 6’-1”, 195-pound left-hander has a short, compact swing that allows him to drive the ball to all fields. More power should come as he matures. His glove, strong arm and speed should allow him to stick at center field. Was 12-for-12 in stolen base attempts for U18 Team USA over nine games. He also drew seven walks, showing an advanced feel for the plate. One of the more exciting players in the draft.
14. Ian Clarkin, LHP, James Madison HS (TX)
There a lot of very good high school lefties in this draft and Clarkin (6’-2”, 190 pounds) is among the best. He can dial his fastball up to 93 mph, and he also adds a big, looping curveball that sits in the low 70s with nice fade. He has a lot of deception in his delivery and has great mound presence. Went 8-2 as a junior with a 0.62 ERA and 106 K/27 BB over 68 innings, allowing just 27 hits.
15. Andy McGuire, INF, James Madison HS (VA)
An electric player, the 6’-1”, 190-pound right-hander will finally be playing at 100 percent this year after dealing with a partially torn labrum in his left hip and bone spurs that limited his range and speed. A great athlete, he can play almost anywhere on the field. Offensively, his excellent bat speed allows him to make consistent contact to all fields and should hit for more power down the line. Was the MVP of the 2011 Perfect game National Showcase going 4-for-4 and reaching base all eight of his plate appearances.
16. Stephen Gonsalves, LHP, Cathedral Catholic HS (CA)
At 6’-5”, the southpaw has a lot of projection and can get his fastball up to 92 mph with sink. He also adds a solid mid-70s curveball and a developing change-up. Went 2-0 with a0.88 ERA and 12 K/4 BB over 16 innings for 2012 U18 Team USA, helping them to a gold medal in Seoul. As a junior, he had a 1.91 ERA, 1.01 WHIP and 79 K/20 BB over 66 innings, leading his team to a second straight state title by tossing a three-hitter with eight strikeouts in the title game.
17. Dustin Driver, RHP, Wenatchee HS (WA)
A fast-rising prospect, the 6’-2”, 200-pound right-hander has been clocked at 94 mph with his fastball with room for more. His curveball has plus potential, and he has very good command of both. He adds a developing change-up, as well as a cutter to his mix. Great mound presence and a bulldog on the bump.
18. Justin Williams, OF, Terrebone HS (LA)
One of the better power bats in the draft, the 6’-3”, 210-pound left-hander is also a great athlete. He has a great arm, great bat speed and just needs to refine his approach at the plate to put it all together. He won both the Perfect Game Classic and Under Armour All-American Game home run derbies over the summer.
19. Clinton Hollon, RHP, Woodford County HS (KY)
After dealing with tendonitis in his throwing arm last year, the 6’-1, 195-pound right-hander has gained the velocity back that made him one of the top prep pitchers in the country. He has been routinely in the mid 90s with his fastball and both his curveball and change-up are above-average pitches. He commands all three of them and has a great feel for pitching.
20. Nick Ciuffo, C, Lexington HS (SC)
Another left-handed hitting catcher, Ciuffo uses his above-average bat speed to drive balls all over the field and more power is on the way. Defensively, his strong arm and footwork behind the plate will allow him to stick at a premium position. A leader on the field, he is among the elite in this deep class of prep catchers.
21. Travis Demeritte, 3B, Winder Barrow HS (GA)
An extremely gifted defensive third baseman, Demeritte also has the bat to justify a corner position. At 6’-1” and 190 pounds, the right-hander has plus bat speed and uses a short, compact swing to drive the ball to all fields. The ball jumps off his bat and he can hit them out with ease.
22. Garrett Williams, RHP, Cavalry Baptist Academy (LA)
A former Little League World Series star, the 6’-2”, 200-pound southpaw is one of the top prep pitchers in the country. A two-way player, his future seems brighter on the mound, as he features a low-90s fastball and a plus curveball. He helped U18 Team USA to a gold medal at the World Championships held in Seoul, South Korea, posting a 1.26 ERA and a team-leading 18 strikeouts over 16.2 innings.
23. A.J. Puk, LHP/1B, Washington HS (IA)
Like Trey Ball, Puk is a 6’-6” lefty who excels on the mound, as well as the plate. He generates a ton of power from the left-side and has been extremely impressive in summer/fall tournaments. On the mound, he can get his fastball up to 92 mph with room for more velocity as he puts more focus on pitching. He also features an above-average breaking ball and his future appears brighter on the mound.
24. Rowdy Tellez, 1B, Elk Grove HS (CA)
A big time bat with an advanced feel for the plate. The 6’-4”, 225-pound left-hander has massive power and won the Rawlings home run derby at the Perfect Game National Showcase. Over 57 games between his sophomore and junior seasons, he hit .535 with 19 doubles, 15 home runs, 96 RBI and struck out just 11 times. At the WWBA tournament held in Jupiter last October, he went 5-for 12 over six games with three doubles, a triple and drew nine walks to no strikeouts using wood bats.
25. Brett Morales, RHP, King HS (FL)
A power righty, Morales has been clocked at 94 mph with his fastball, and it has nice sinking action to it. He also adds one of the better change-ups among prep players, sitting in the upper 70s with late fade and deception. His curveball sits in the low 70s and is still developing, but he mixes his pitches well and can command all three.
26. Matt McPhearson, OF, Riverdale Baptist HS (MD)
Arguably the fastest player in the draft (6.21/60), the 5’-11” left-hander went 68-for-72 in stolen base attempts as a junior. He also hit .354 with 30 walks and just 12 strikeouts over 96 at-bats, good for a .512 OBP. An above-average arm, mixed with his elite speed, should allow him to stick at centerfield.
27. Brian Navarreto, C, Arlington Country Day HS (FL)
At 6’-4” and 220 pounds, Navarreto is outstanding defensively and makes for a big target behind the plate. Offensively, he generates a lot of power from the right side and hit .512 as a junior with 16 doubles, 12 home runs and 38 RBI. Has been timed at 6.88 in the 60, showing very good speed for a catcher. Goes to the same school as top prospect Javier Baez.
28. Casey Shane, RHP, Centennial HS (TX)
Shane is a 6’-4”, 200-pound right-hander with a nasty, sinking fastball that sits in the low 90s. He also features a mid-80s change-up and low-80s curveball that both project to above-average. His mechanics need some work as his hip turn in his delivery may account for his command issues. A lot of projection due to his size and already above-average arsenal.
29. Chris Okey, C, Eustis HS (FL)
Like Martinez, Okey has the tools to stick behind the plate, and many think his offensive potential his higher. Also like Martinez, he is a two-time gold medal winner for U18 Team USA. He has great bat speed, and his strong wrists project to a lot more power at the next level. He hit .386 his junior year with three home runs, 21 RBI and just four strikeouts over 57 at-bats. As a sophomore, he hit .519 with seven doubles, three home runs and 25 RBI.
30. Cavan Biggio, 2B, St. Thomas HS (TX)
A very good athlete who has a high understanding of the game having grown up around it, the 6’-1” left-hander has a lot of upside. As a sophomore, the 6’-1” left-hander hit .402 over 34 games with seven home runs, 48 RBI and a .750 SLG. He also drew 36 walks for a .570 OBP. Last season, he hit .420 with two home runs, 26 RBI and a .488 OBP over 24 games. Very sound defensively.
31. Jeremy Martinez, C, Mater Dei HS (CA)
A two-time gold medal winner for U18 Team USA, Martinez is one of the more polished prep players in the draft. His strong arm, footwork and high understanding of the game will allow him to stick at catcher. Some question the bat and want to see more power from him. At 5’-11” and 195 pounds, he hits the gaps and has a good feel for the strike zone. Hit .388 over 29 games as a junior. A true leader on the field.
32. Jan Hernandez, 3B/SS, Carlos Beltran BB Academy (PR)
The 6’-3”, 200-pound right-hander has huge potential with the bat. He has great bat speed, an easy swing and the ball jumps off his bat. There are questions about where he will play defensively, however. He does have a strong arm, but his lack of speed and range may force him to a corner outfield spot.
33. Connor Jones, RHP, Great Bridge HS (VA)
Has been extremely impressive over the past year, increasing his velocity almost 10 mph and is now up to 90-93 mph on his sinking fastball. Also adds an above-average breaking ball and has a good feel for pitching. Went 7-1 as a junior with a 1.93 ERA and 59 K/17 BB over 54.1 innings.
34. Carlos Salazar, RHP, Kerman HS (CA)
His fastball can touch 97 mph, and his change-up sits in the mid 80s with nice fade. His curveball is still developing, and his control can get the best of at times. As a junior, he went 11-1 over 17 starts with a 1.27 ERA and 159 K/55 BB over 77.1 innings, allowing just 30 hits. Raw in some areas but a huge upside.
35. Ryder Jones, RHP/3B, Watauga HS (NC)
A two-way player, Jones is a legitimate prospect on offense where he can rake it from the left side with power to all fields. He throws right-handed and can get his fastball up to 92 mph with movement. At 6’-4” and 195 pounds, he has huge upside on the mound, as well as the plate.
36. Hunter Green, LHP, Warren East HS (TX)
At 6’-4” and 170 pounds, he already gets his fastball up to 92 mph and will add more velocity once he matures. He adds a deceptive change-up and a power curveball with nice depth. He locates his pitches well and has a good feel for his pitches.
37. Zach Collins, C/1B, American Heritage HS (FL)
Enormous power from the left side. The 6’-3”, 205-pound masher has a good understanding of the strike zone, as well as very good bat speed. Most believe he will eventually end up at first base. He was also a member of U16 Team USA, hitting .500 (16-for-32) with three home runs and 16 RBI over eight games.
A teammate of Jeremy Martinez, the 6’-3” left-hander generates great bat speed and his power potential is huge with his size. Hit .353 with 11 doubles, four home runs and 23 RBI over 102 at-bats as a junior. Throws right-handed, and his strong arm and athleticism make him one of the better third base prospects in the draft.
39. Derek Beauprez, RHP, Cherry Creek HS (CO)
Still relatively new to pitching, this is all about upside. At 6’-5” and 220 pounds, the converted infielder has a good feel for the mound and can get his fastball up to 94 mph while maintaining velocity late in games. Went 3-1 last season with a 2.62 ERA, 1.38 WHIP and 30 K/12 BB over 24 innings. Has solid offspeed stuff, as well.
40. Terry McClure, OF, Riverwood HS (GA)
One of the better athletes in the draft, he has been clocked at 6.42 in the 60 and 86 mph from the outfield with his arm. The 6’-2”, 190-pound right-hander has great speed and good power. A player with a lot of upside.
41. Willie Abreu, OF, Mater HS (FL)
A 6’-4” right-hander, Abreu is more of a line-drive hitter now, but his size suggests a lot more power will come. His quick wrists allow him to hit lasers to all fields and he also has a good understanding of the strike zone. Like many on this list, he has been a regular on Team USA and hit .423 (11for-26) for gold medal winning 2010 U16 Team USA. Has a strong enough arm and range to hold down a corner outfield spot. Plays for the same school as Albert Almora, the sixth-overall pick in 2012 by the Cubs.
42. Trevor Clifton, RHP, Heritage HS (TN)
Clifton’s size (6’-5”, 180 pounds) makes him a very projectable pitcher. His fastball sits in the low 90s and his change-up is his out pitch and looks plus at times. He also adds a developing curveball and slider. Needs to refine his command as he walked 28 batters over 33.2 innings as a junior, although he did strikeout 57 while allowing just 17 hits.
43. Keegan Thompson, RHP, Cullman HS (AL)
The 6’-3”, 195-pound right-hander can get his fastball up to 94 mph with movement. He also features a plus curveball, developing curve and has command of all three. Was the Gatorade Player of the Year in the state of Alabama as a sophomore and went 7-2 with a 0.94 ERA and 119 K/5 BB over 67.1 innings as a junior. Has been a fixture on Team USA.
44. Cord Sandberg, OF, Manatee County Private HS (FL)
A two-sport star, Sandberg is a 6’-3”, 215-pound left-hander with a very high ceiling. He has good speed, a strong arm and can mash the ball to all fields. Has the instincts to play third base at the next level, as well as the arm. He has said he will not decide on whether he will attend Mississippi State to play quarterback or stick with baseball until a couple of days after the draft, something that could seriously effect his draft standing. If he changes his mind, and decides on baseball before the draft, he could be a high draft pick.
45. Chris Kohler, LHP, Los Osos HS (CA)
A 6’-3” southpaw with a great looping mid-70s curveball that he can locate and use to get hitters chasing. His fastball sits in the 86-89 mph range with good sink, and he also adds an upper-70s change-up with late fade. Still relatively new to pitching, there is a lot of upside.
46. Chris Oakley, RHP, St. Augustine HS (NJ)
At 6’-8” and 230 pounds, there is a lot of projection. He has an easy delivery and can get his fastball up to the mid 90s. He adds a mid-70s curveball that has plus potential and also mixes in a developing split-finger fastball.
47. Chris Rivera, SS, El Dorado HS (CA)
A slick-fielding shortstop who may actually be better suited behind the plate. He has the arm, footwork and instincts to be a solid defender at either. Offensively, his short, compact swing project to a high-average hitter with decent pop.
48. Josh Hart, OF, Parkview HS (GA)
The 6’-2”, 180-pound left-hander has plus bat speed and has added nearly 20 pounds this year. He hit .373 with 30 stolen bases as a junior for Parkview, Baseball America’s national title winners last year. A leadoff-type hitter who can hit the gaps, take walks and use his speed to wreak havoc.
49. John Sternagel, 3B/SS, Rockledge HS (FL)
A very good defender, the 6’-2”, 200-pound right-hander has a plus arm and enough range to stick at the hot corner. He makes consistent contact and can spray the ball to all fields and his size suggests more power will come. Great instincts on the field.
50. Nick Longhi, 1B/LHP, Venice Senior HS (FL)
At 6’-2” and 205 pounds, Longhi is one of the more polished hitters in the draft. He has great bat speed and makes consistent contact. His arm has been clocked at 87 mph from first base. On the mound, he can reach 92 mph with his fastball and also adds a low-70s curveball. His offensive potential appears higher than his future on the mound.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @DanMKirby for draft updates and prospect news.