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Update: 2010 MLB Draft Top 30 College Second Base Prospects

Click to see the completed top 30 all in one spot right here! Or scroll down one post. Or forget those fools ranked 30-6 and just focus on the top five, republished below…

5. Louisville SR 2B Adam Duvall – I’m as big a Louisville fan (prospect-wise) you’ll find outside of Kentucky, so take the Duvall ranking with a grain of salt. His speed and defense aren’t elite, but he’s strong enough in both areas. It’ll be his bat that gets him his shot as he rises to minor league prominence. Duvall reminds me a lot of great deal of 2009 fourth round pick Derek McCallum. Both players have really nice swings who should each hit for good averages with enough extra-base hits to keep pitchers honest.

4. Stanford JR 2B Colin Walsh – I wrote before the season that Walsh had a really pretty swing that caused scouts to project more power in his future. The future is now. Walsh’s excellent results on the field have finally caught up to his positive scouting reports. He also has an outstanding glove at second that may actually be good enough to work at shortstop, giving hope that he can be a utility infielder in the mold of Marco Scutaro someday. His offensive progression with Stanford actually reminds me of former Cardinal Cord Phelps, but, and this bears repeating, Walsh’s glove is outstanding. Phelps was a third rounder as a hitter with slightly less college production, a bit more physical projection, and a significantly lesser glove. 2010 is a really strong draft, especially near the top, but I’d still say that comparison bodes well for Walsh come draft day.

3. Chipola JC FR 2B LeVon Washington – Thought Washington wasn’t worth a first round grade in 2009, but the Tampa front office’s seal of approval is enough to make any good draft fan reconsider. His plus speed remains a major strength, as does his strong contact skills and intriguing power potential, but his post-injury noodle arm is a concern at any defensive position, even second. Even though I’m still not personally sold on the bat playing at higher levels, there is little denying Washington’s four-tool upside.

2. West Virginia JR 2B Jedd Gyorko – I’m not a scout, so I try not to pretend to be one if at all possible, but, if you’ll indulge me just this one, I have to point out the marked difference between Gyorko’s 2010 swing and his 2009 swing. The majority of his damage last season came on guesswork when he’d get nearly all his weight shifted up on his front foot and hack away. His stride is way more efficient this year, with a vastly improved, far more balanced load and launch. Very encouraging progress. Defensively, Gyorko will never be known for his range, but his soft hands should enable him to make all the plays at balls hit at or near him. The two most prevalent (and optimistic) comps are Kevin Youkilis and Dan Uggla, but ultimately Gyorko’s power upside pales in comparison. For me, Gyorko’s upside is that of the new Ben Zobrist.

1. Ball State JR 2B Kolbrin Vitek – Modest son of a gun I am, I’d never toot my own horn about getting out ahead of a prospect’s emergence, but, seeing as I’m wrong 95% of the time, give or take, I’d figure now is as good a time as any to point out this gem from early January: “Vitek’s tools all grade out similarly to fellow small school sensation Bryce Brentz. They both have plus bat speed, good plate discipline, and plus power potential. They are also both two-way players who have had success on the mound collegiately, though only Vitek could actually pull of the trick of being a legit draft prospect as either a hitter or pitcher. In addition to a glove/arm combination that will definitely play at third professionally, Vitek does all the little things well that make scouts (and wannabe’s like me) very happy. He is a sensational base runner, works deep counts, and has one of the coolest names this side of Yordy Cabrera. Vitek’s utter dominance of the Great Lakes League this past summer sealed the deal for me. He may not be a first rounder in June, but he is as good a bet as any college hitter in the 2010 to be an impact player in the big leagues.” Ha, I called him “Bryce Brentz without a publicist.” Genius prognosticating and comic gold. The myth of the next Jim Callis/Steve Martin super-hybrid has finally been realized.

2010 MLB Draft: Top 30 College Second Base Prospects

30. Howard JC SO 2B Marcellous Biggins – Raw on the bases, in the field, and at the plate, but when you are this far down the list a plus tool like Biggins’ speed is enough to get noticed.

29. Pacific JR 2B JB Brown – Above-average hitter in the mold of Josh Vitters, Howie Kendrick, and Placido Polanco. Of course, those three names were superior prospects at various points in their respective development; I’m talking about the type of hitter, not necessarily the quality of hitter. Brown is a notorious hacker, but has shown an uncanny ability to swing at pitches he can handle. Hitters like this are typically far too batting average dependent to emerge as successful professionals, but they make for interesting case studies as they progress through the minors.

28. Sam Houston State JR 2B Braden Riley – Another player with an interesting hit tool, but probably not enough power or patience to advance too far up the ladder professionally.

27. Kent State JR 2B Jared Humphreys – Really good athlete with plus speed and great baseball instincts who is capable of playing a variety of positions on the diamond. He’s probably best defensively in the outfield, but his bat players much better at second. Could be an organizational player who wears down a team over

26. Connecticut JR 2B Pierre LePage – Stock is lower here than in other spots, an opinion based largely on his groundball inducing swing plane and lack of meaningful physical strength. In his defense, LePage qualifies as the type of player who grows on you every time you watch him play; pro scouts love guys like that. He can do just enough of everything, and do it all pretty well, but his slap hitting style could get the bat knocked out of his hands as a pro.

25. North Carolina State SR 2B Dallas Poulk – Four years of starter’s at bats have finally paid off for the hard working Poulk. Long considered the inferior prospect to his cousin, Drew, Dallas’s ultra productive 2010 season has finally gotten the attention of area scouts. What they are seeing is another potential organizational player at second, but one with just enough juice in his bat to make a conversion to catching a worthwhile risk.

24. Arizona JR 2B Rafael Valenzuela – Less toolsy, less athletic version of Jared Humphreys, but similar defensive versatility and solid hit tool. What separates Valenzuela is a more professional approach at the plate and, despite less upside, a greater chance of helping a big league team someday.

23. St John’s JR 2B Greg Hopkins – A college third baseman better suited for second in the pros, Hopkins is a very well-rounded ballplayer who grades out with at least fringe average tools in all areas but foot speed. His 45 arm should be enough for second, and his gap power is better suited for the keystone sack than third. Looks like another organizational guy with the upside of a utility player.

22. Central Florida JR 2B Derek Luciano – His name makes me think slick fielding, speed middle infielder, but in reality Luciano is a below-average runner and inconsistent fielder who will have to rely on his lefthanded power if he wants to make it in pro ball. His good, but not great 2010 season has tempered some of the pre-season enthusiasm surrounding his prospect stock.

21. Florida JR 2B Josh Adams– Personal favorite heading into the year has struggled as one of the veteran anchors of a young Gators lineup. His scouting reports are largely favorable, despite the subpar junior season. Like a few other names below him on the list, Adams will be helped by his positional versatility as he tries to make it in the pros as a utility guy.

20. College of Charleston SR 2B Joey Bergman – Any regular reader should know that I wasn’t a Christian Colon fan coming into the year. To fill the void atop my shortstop rankings, I stubbornly tried to convince myself that there was somebody at the college level better. The one name that came up in conversations with people smarter than I am multiple times was Joey Bergman, but always with the caveat that he won’t stick at the position as a pro. Ultimately, nobody could vouch for any player over Colon at shortstop, but the positive vibes I kept hearing when discussing Bergman stuck with me. He’s another versatile defender who can play both up the middle spots, and his high contact rate bodes well going forward.

19. Georgia Southern SR 2B AJ Wirnsberger – The position-less Wirnsberger is on the second base list by default because, well, his bat is good enough to get him drafted, but his glove leaves much to be desired. Unlike a few other defensively flexible players on the list, Wirnsberger projects as a utility guy based more on a reputation as an iffy glove that needs to be hidden rather than a naturally versatile defender. The reason finding him a position is worth the trouble at all is the bat. A hotly recruited prep player, Wirnsberger has good loft on his swing and punishes mistakes, especially when he can get his hands extended. He could find a home behind the plate if a team believes his strong arm will play.

18. Miami SR 2B Scott Lawson – Lawson, Jemile Weeks’ successor at second for Miami, has done nothing but hit since stepping on campus. Above-average hit tool, fantastic plate discipline, ten homer pro pop, and strong defense across the board…can you tell he is a personal favorite? Lawson’s spot on the list begins a stretch of players that I think can play regularly in the big leagues if everything, and I mean everything, breaks right for them.

17. Clemson SR 2B Mike Freeman – Almost an identical player to Scott Lawson, but Freeman provides better footwork in the field and a smidge better speed on the bases. He also possesses one of the quietest, most compact swings I’ve seen at the college level in some time, and has a well earned reputation as a player who doesn’t go the plate without first knowing as much as possible about the opposition. Solid hit tool, above-average speed, good defender, efficient swing, veteran approach….obvious enough we have another personal favorite on our hands, right?

16. Canisius JR 2B Steve McQuail – McQuail has a pro body, pro power, and pro arm, but currently has too many holes in his long, loopy swing to profile as a regular. That said, McQuail’s tools are good enough to believe he has a chance to succeed professionally with the help of a good professional hitting instructor. I know I’m coming off like a broken record here, but when I read certain aspects of McQuail’s scouting reports (athletic, plus arm, only decent at second) I really can’t help but think some pro team has to think of him as a potential catching conversion.

15. Cal State Fullerton JR 2B Corey Jones – Jones is in pretty good company as the best 2010 draft-eligible Titan after a couple of guys named Christian Colon and Gary Brown. Live bat, power potential, and quickly maturing plate discipline, plus the possibility of some time back at his natural shortstop make for an intriguing pro prospect with more upside than your typical college athlete.

14. Southern JR 2B Curtis Wilson– Underrated player who is a good athlete with above-average speed and a really well rounded tool set. Biggest obstacle might be the lack of exposure and lack of one signature standout tool. Funny how a strength (no true weaknesses to his game) can be portrayed as a liability (no eye opening tool) in the next sentence. Speaking of second baseman from Southern, how awesome was Rickie Weeks? His junior year numbers: .500/.619/.987 with 27 steals in 27 tries. He’s probably the second baseman on my all-time favorite non-home team player team.

13. Kentucky JR 2B Chris Bisson– Steady enough to someday ascend to an everyday big league spot, but not currently in possession of any consistent standout tool. Noticing a trend yet? Bisson is lower here than ever I expected, but it’s more about liking the players ranked higher than disliking him. His upside is as a regular .275ish hitter (55) with low double digit homers (40) and above-average plate discipline. Add in a glove that borders on plus and you’ve got yourself a player that big league teams should start thinking about popping in the top ten rounds easy.

12. Kansas SR 2B Robby Price – Differences between Bisson and Price are more perception than reality at this point. Bisson offers up more speed and a little more power projection, but Price has the edge in the field and batting eye. For teams that go overslot both early (first 5 rounds) and late (round 25 and up) in the draft, the middle rounds — 10ish to 25ish — are an area where cheap organizational types are often gobbled up. Price fits that prototype, but is more talented than the typical fringe of the roster taken.

11. California JR 2B BJ Guinn – Might be good enough to hold an everyday job for a team that emphasizes speed and defense up the middle based on those two plus tools alone. The speed is very good, I don’t want to deemphasize his ability there, but it’s Guinn’s glove that really gets your attention. His arm may be a little short for the left side of the diamond, but his crazy range as second can’t help but make you wonder what kind of shortstop he’d be if given the chance.

10. Florida Southern JR 2B Wade Kirkland– For me, a better prospect than Robbie Shields, third rounder in 2009. Shields has more raw power and a better arm, but Kirkland has more present gap power and a more reliable glove.

9. Rutgers JR 2B Brandon Boykin– After excelling against relatively high level northeastern prep competition at Don Bosco Prep, Boykin has finally enjoyed a breakout season with the bat in year three at Rutgers. Friend of a friend of a friend told me the Phillies have him as a high priority mid-round middle infield target, no doubt because of his plus speed and surprisingly springy bat.

8. Cerritos CC SO 2B Joe Terry– The quintessential hitting machine who makes hard contact darn near every time he steps to the plate. He does more than just hit, however; Terry is also an above-average runner with a strong arm who, despite appearing to fight his body sometimes in the field, should settle in as at least an average second baseman with the help of professional coaching. He reinvented himself somewhat in 2010 sacrificing some power for a more patient approach, but the 19th round pick from 2010 has maintained that draft momentum all the same.

7. Alabama JR 2B Ross Wilson– Pretty clear scouting over statistics pick. Wilson has as much power potential and athleticism as any player below him on the list, but has disappointed scouts who expected much more with the bat this spring. His numbers all fall below the three magic thresholds (slugging below .550, more K’s than BB’s, way less than 20 steals), so his placement on this list is a testament to the confidence I have in a plus athlete figuring out how to apply his significant tools before long. High risk, high reward pick that could either emerge as a legit big league caliber starting player or flame out in AA.

6. Virginia JR 2B Phil Gosselin– Remains an average to slightly below-average infielder (capable of playing third and short in a pinch) with an average arm well suited for second base, who many believe may ultimately wind up in the outfield as a pro. That’s what I’ve heard, anyway. I’m not necessarily buying it; heck, his mere presence on this list indicates I think it would be best to keep Gosselin at second as long as possible professionally. He doesn’t have the glove/range for center, and doesn’t have the bat for a corner. If he isn’t a starting caliber outfielder, why not at least give him a shot in the infield? Coming into the year I thought his future was as a big league super-sub, but his big junior year has me thinking his bat could work at second if the glove cooperates.

5. Louisville SR 2B Adam Duvall – I’m as big a Louisville fan (prospect-wise) you’ll find outside of Kentucky, so take the Duvall ranking with a grain of salt. His speed and defense aren’t elite, but he’s strong enough in both areas. It’ll be his bat that gets him his shot as he rises to minor league prominence. Duvall reminds me a lot of great deal of 2009 fourth round pick Derek McCallum. Both players have really nice swings who should each hit for good averages with enough extra-base hits to keep pitchers honest.

4. Stanford JR 2B Colin Walsh – I wrote before the season that Walsh had a really pretty swing that caused scouts to project more power in his future. The future is now. Walsh’s excellent results on the field have finally caught up to his positive scouting reports. He also has an outstanding glove at second that may actually be good enough to work at shortstop, giving hope that he can be a utility infielder in the mold of Marco Scutaro someday. His offensive progression with Stanford actually reminds me of former Cardinal Cord Phelps, but, and this bears repeating, Walsh’s glove is outstanding. Phelps was a third rounder as a hitter with slightly less college production, a bit more physical projection, and a significantly lesser glove. 2010 is a really strong draft, especially near the top, but I’d still say that comparison bodes well for Walsh come draft day.

3. Chipola JC FR 2B LeVon Washington – Thought Washington wasn’t worth a first round grade in 2009, but the Tampa front office’s seal of approval is enough to make any good draft fan reconsider. His plus speed remains a major strength, as does his strong contact skills and intriguing power potential, but his post-injury noodle arm is a concern at any defensive position, even second. Even though I’m still not personally sold on the bat playing at higher levels, there is little denying Washington’s four-tool upside.

2. West Virginia JR 2B Jedd Gyorko – I’m not a scout, so I try not to pretend to be one if at all possible, but, if you’ll indulge me just this one, I have to point out the marked difference between Gyorko’s 2010 swing and his 2009 swing. The majority of his damage last season came on guesswork when he’d get nearly all his weight shifted up on his front foot and hack away. His stride is way more efficient this year, with a vastly improved, far more balanced load and launch. Very encouraging progress. Defensively, Gyorko will never be known for his range, but his soft hands should enable him to make all the plays at balls hit at or near him. The two most prevalent (and optimistic) comps are Kevin Youkilis and Dan Uggla, but ultimately Gyorko’s power upside pales in comparison. For me, Gyorko’s upside is that of the new Ben Zobrist.

1. Ball State JR 2B Kolbrin Vitek – Modest son of a gun I am, I’d never toot my own horn about getting out ahead of a prospect’s emergence, but, seeing as I’m wrong 95% of the time, give or take, I’d figure now is as good a time as any to point out this gem from early January: “Vitek’s tools all grade out similarly to fellow small school sensation Bryce Brentz. They both have plus bat speed, good plate discipline, and plus power potential. They are also both two-way players who have had success on the mound collegiately, though only Vitek could actually pull of the trick of being a legit draft prospect as either a hitter or pitcher. In addition to a glove/arm combination that will definitely play at third professionally, Vitek does all the little things well that make scouts (and wannabe’s like me) very happy. He is a sensational base runner, works deep counts, and has one of the coolest names this side of Yordy Cabrera. Vitek’s utter dominance of the Great Lakes League this past summer sealed the deal for me. He may not be a first rounder in June, but he is as good a bet as any college hitter in the 2010 to be an impact player in the big leagues.” Ha, I called him “Bryce Brentz without a publicist.” Genius prognosticating and comic gold. The myth of the next Jim Callis/Steve Martin super-hybrid has finally been realized.

College Team Profiles: Stanford Cardinal

One of the most popular (fine, the only) question I’ve been emailed since starting this site up goes a little something like this: I’m going to see ____ University/College/State play this weekend and I was wondering if there was anybody with a professional future that would be worth watching. The College Team Profiles are designed to preemptively answer any and all questions about the prospects from a particular college team…or maybe just open up a whole new debate full of new, even more confusing questions. We’ll see. The next three draft classes for one particular school are featured, with the players ranked in order (from greatest to least greatest) within each class.

As always, whether you agree, disagree, or think I’m a dope who should leave this sort of stuff to the experts (thanks, Mom)…let’s hear it via email (you can use either robozga at gmail dot com or thebaseballdraftreport at gmail dot com) or in the comments section.


2010

JR OF Kellen Kiilsgaard (2010) is another high upside, high risk collegiate outfielder that could put himself in position to be a top-three round pick with a big junior season. He’s a plus athlete with plus raw power and plus speed. Plus (sorry, I couldn’t resist), he’s got the tools to be an above-average defensive outfielder, although his slingshot throwing motion may limit him to leftfield professionally. The tools haven’t manifested themselves in the same way they have in other players in his class (for all his speed and athleticism he only swiped one bag last season), but Kiilsgaard, a football player compared to Jake Locker coming out of high school, deserves the benefit of the doubt due to his limited experience on the diamond. His future draft position will most likely be somewhere between round five and ten, but, as mentioned, the talent level is high enough to push him up to the end of round three.

JR 2B Colin Walsh (2010) reminds me a little bit of present day Luis Castillo, also known as Luis Castillo after losing his wheels. He’s got a pretty swing that has scouts projecting more power in his future than he has shown thus far.  Hopefully that little bit of pop begins to show up in 2010 because another year of slugging .376 won’t cut it. He has an outstanding glove at second that may actually be good enough to work at shortstop, giving hope that he can be a utility infielder in the mold of Marco Scutaro someday. If even just a little bit more power shows up this year, he could find himself off the board within the first 7 or 8 rounds this June.

JR 1B Jonathan Kaskow (2010) is exactly the kind of player that makes the College Team Profiles worthwhile. If you were to just scan the Stanford roster, check out the statistics from the past few years, and maybe take a glance at one of the giants of the industry’s (namely BA or PG) top 100/200/300 list of draft-eligible players, you’d totally miss out on a prospect like Jonathan Kaskow. I’m not knocking those methods of learning about prospects, by the way; for years that was almost exactly what I would do before watching a college/high school game, and, quite honestly, those are still my go-to moves in a pinch today. The exclusion of Kaskow from any top prospect list at this point is warranted, but if prospecting is all about being ahead of the curve, then I’m happy to help get Kaskow’s name out there now before he blows up in his junior season at Stanford. Plus raw power from both sides of the plate, smooth defense at first, big league ready size (6-4, 225), and a mature approach to hitting all help make Kaskow a sleeper to rise way up the draft charts this spring. In a down year for college hitting, a big bat like this can make up a lot of ground in a short amount of time.

JR RHP Michael Marshall (2010) is a big (6-3, 240) rubber armed Texan highly skilled in both throwing low-90s fastballs by hitters and turning around on low-90s fastballs at the plate.  He also throws a quality breaking ball and a decent change, pitches good enough to make some wonder if he could someday start. Truthfully, he had me at big rubber armed Texan. Marshall might be one of those “who?” type of players that wind up having more success working consistent innings with professional coaching than they ever could have at the college level.

JR RHP Alex Pracher (2010) sits in the high-80s with a fastball that will touch the low-90s when he needs it. He rounds out his arsenal with two solid secondary offerings, a slider and a changeup, plus a curve that probably should be scrapped. Projection is the big word when it comes to Pracher, as scouts see his 6-3, 175 pound frame and envision a day when the fastball sits in the low-90s deep into games. I’m not sold on that day ever coming, and actually think Pracher works best in relief, three solid pitches be damned. I’m actively trying to be more pessimistic in this scouting blurbs (not everybody is a top ten round pick, after all), and Pracher gives me the opportunity to break from convention and wonder why a particular player is as highly regarded by the consensus as he is. I normally see three average or better pitches and think, “well, at worse he has the upside as a big league starter…and that’s pretty darn good,” but I can’t get on board the Pracher bandwagon for some reason.

SR RHP Kyle Thompson (2010) is a deep, deep, deep sleeper, not unlike a hungover hibernating bear. How did the bear get so drunk in the first place? I’ll never tell. College relievers with 12.1 innings pitched through three healthy seasons don’t typically warrant more than a quick dismissal of their pro prospects, but any player who learned under the watchful eye of Mark Gubicza is alright by me. I know Thompson has been used only out of the bullpen for the Cardinal, but his stuff (low-90s fastball, above-average change, and usable breaking ball) would play better as a starter. Late round senior signs don’t normally have the upside of a middle reliever, let alone a fifth starter, but that’s what I see in Thompson. It’ll take a good pitching coach to help him unlock the potential of his stuff, but there is enough already there to make him a worthy late round (40+) pickup.

JR SS Jake Schlander (2010) can really pick it at shortstop, but his inability to make consistent contact, hit for power, and get on base regularly put a damper on his pro prospects. He’s started since day one at Stanford, putting up lines of .232/.307/.256 and .232/.285/.324 his first two seasons. Those are stunningly bad numbers. However, as mentioned, Schlander can really pick it at shortstop. I mean, he can really pick it. Plus range, flawless hands, strong arm, he has it all. He’s like the John McDonald of the college game. John McDonald is a career .238/.276/.317 hitter in the bigs. John McDonald hit .261/.321/.329 in the minors. John McDonald just signed a two year contract that will guarantee him three million dollars. I won’t say that Schlander will ever be a big leaguer making coin like that, but I do feel comfortable predicting that he’ll be on draft boards either this summer or next. He’ll get a chance to show off his defensive versatility this season as Kenny Diekroeger swipes the starting shortstop job away, a blessing in disguise for Schlander’s pro prospects. Expect a forward thinking front office, maybe Seattle or Boston, to pop Schlander late (round 35+) against all offensive odds before he graduates.

JR C Zach Jones (2010) is a bit of an enigma – a potential above-average defender behind the plate who doubles as an outstanding athlete and fantastic baserunner. I like guys who break the mold, and players who can legitimately catch AND steal double digit bases are a rarity. I also like guys who can hit, something Jones hasn’t proven he can do. His defense may be enough to get him drafted, but it won’t be until very late…and it may not be until his senior year.

SR INF Min (Brian) Moon (2010) can play any infield position, but has been slowed his entire career with Stanford with one nagging injury after another. The inconsistent playing time has prevented him from showing off his above-average defense and intriguing raw power, but he may not get the needed at bats to get noticed in time for the draft this June.

JR OF Dave Giuliani (2010) ought to be in the running for some playing time in Stanford’s wide open outfield. A big junior year could get him noticed as a potential above-average big league backup outfielder option down the line. Giuliani does a lot right on defense (average in center, above-average on the corners, plus a very strong arm) and on the base paths (55 speed), but has a lot to prove with the bat. His lack of playing time his first two seasons at Stanford make him a good bet to stick around campus through his senior year.

SR RHP Cory Bannister (2010) may have impressive bloodlines (he’s Brian’s brother and Floyd’s son), but he isn’t a pro prospect. Short, fringy stuff, poor numbers, and coming off of Tommy John surgery? Not going to cut it. Name recognition might be his only shot at a professional career.

SR INF Adam Gaylord (2010) would need a minor miracle to even get on a big league club’s draft radar this June. Scrappy college middle infielders normally receive more than their fair share of love from scouts, but no amount of grit can make a 10-54 BB to K ratio with absolutely no power (18 extra base hits in 287 at bats) appealing. Come to think of it, a minor miracle probably still won’t be enough for Gaylord to play pro ball after graduation, but he’ll always have the degree from Stanford to fall back on.

JR RHP Andrew Clauson (2010) hasn’t pitched in live game action since 2007. He isn’t a pro prospect, despite a fastball that has been clocked as high as 92 in the past.

JR C Ben Clowe (2010) offers up solid defensive tools, but doesn’t bring much else to the table. He has been leapfrogged on the depth chart by Zach Jones, a pretty damning sign for any player hoping to someday get paid to play. Clowe isn’t a bad college ballplayer, especially if he is your backup backstop, but that puts pretty far off any scouting director’s radar.

JR RHP Danny Sandbrink (2010) just doesn’t miss enough bats with his fastball, curveball, and changeup combo to justify a spot in the draft this June. His disastrous 2009 season (ERA over 7.00 with a 22/16 strikeout to walk ratio in 33 innings) puts him behind a slew of more talented arms in the Stanford pitching staff pecking order.

JR OF Kellen McColl (2010) would be a potential first round prospect if only for a few alterations to his last name. Kellen McColl doesn’t have much of a chance of getting drafted at all. Kellen McCool, however, now that’s a player a smart scouting director would jump at the chance to pay millions of dollars. McColl doesn’t have a starting job heading into 2010 (though his above-average speed and solid defense could get him some time in left now that Toby Gerhart will spend the spring prepping for the NFL Draft) and should probably just go ahead now and make plans for June 7-9 that don’t revolve around following the draft online.

SR OF/HB Toby Gerhart (2010) will spend the spring working out in preparation for the NFL Draft this June. Followers of the site know I’m a bit obsessive when it comes to drafts in any of the major sports, so when I’m not writing something for this site, I tend to be scouring the internet for any kind of useful information re: the NFL Draft. As an aside, nice a prospect as Gerhart may be on the gridiron, I’d rather my favorite team take one of the other two high profile baseballers in this year’s draft. Give me Chad Jones in the second/third round area, and Riley Cooper late, but thanks but no thanks on Gerhart, assuming he goes as high as many outlets are projecting. I’m not hating on the player per se, but rather currently thinking his value isn’t in line with where he’ll probably wind up going on draft day. Anyway, he’s at the bottom of the 2010 rankings because he chose football over baseball, truly an unforgivable sin.

2011

SO OF Jack Mosbacher (2011) is officially listed as a sophomore despite not playing for the Cardinal as a freshman. Typically players who don’t get into any actual games get the redshirt tag, whether or not it was a planned redshirt season or not. Mosbacher could be listed as a redshirt freshman, but is instead referred to as a sophomore. His draft year remains the same either way, so there really isn’t any point talking about this, but these are the things you need to ramble on about to fill space in a paragraph that is supposed to be about a guy named Mosbacher. To his credit, Mosbacher actually sounds like a fascinating person (involved in multiple theater productions, interested in a career in public service, and has parents who were both tremendous athletes) and a prospect with some upside (above-average speed and arm, enough defensive tools to play centerfield, leadoff hitter profile). We’ll see.

SO INF Justin Schwartz (2011) has enough speed to be a pretty useful college infielder, especially in a backup role. Without any kind of college data or meaningful scouting reports or ever having him seen in person (sadly I’ve never been able to visit Beverly Hills HS, where Schwartz attended), I really don’t have anything more to add here. Paragraphs like this should serve as a reminder why you, the reader, will never have to pay a dime to read this site.

2012

FR SS Kenny Diekroeger (2012) will be linked to 2010 draft prospect LeVon Washington because they were the first two (unsigned) picks of the Rays, but Washington’s upside doesn’t begin to scrape the bottom of Diekroeger’s. Washington is considered a top half of the 2010 first round pick by some; I don’t like him quite that much, but he’s a legit high round prospect all the same. If Diekroeger is significantly better, like I believe he is, then what’s his ultimate draft position upside? His plus-plus athleticism and speed, big league ready frame, and high likelihood he sticks up the middle defensively gives him a place in the top ten of my hypothetical 2012 MLB Mock Draft. He is a little raw both at the plate and in the field, but, wow, that athleticism. You’re always gambling on tools-oriented guys like this, but that athleticism is special enough to outweigh much of the risk. He just looks like a player that will figure it all out before too long.

FR 1B/OF Justin Ringo (2012) is one of the top incoming first base/corner outfield/big bat prospects in the nation. He has plus lefthanded power, ridiculous bat speed, and a compact yet thunderous swing. His early rise to fame has helped him develop a very patient approach to the plate, a trait he has been forced to concentrate on dating back to the frequent pitch-arounds of his sophomore season. All college players were excellent high school players, but it isn’t everyday that a player gets that kind of respect that early in his prep career. Ringo rarely swings at a bad ball and strikes out way less than your typical power hitting prospect. That’s partially because of the aforementioned experience watching garbage pitches go by, but also explained by the fact Ringo isn’t a typical power hitting prospect; he’s a great hitter who just so happens to have great power. He could join Diekroeger in the 2012 first round.

FR INF Eric Smith (2012) may be a name that gets lost amidst the huge names of the consensus top three 2010 Stanford recruiting class, but that would be a mistake. Smith played two years of high school baseball at shortstop after starting out by playing one at third base, but could shift over to the hot corner as he fills out. His plus arm and quick reaction time should play well there. Few players across the country put up high school numbers quite like Smith’s, a testament to his uncanny ability to make consistent hard contact at the plate. I know high school numbers rank absurdly low on the great big list of things that make prospects appealing, but numbers as ridiculous as Smith’s were can get a largely unrecognized player on a scout/recruiting coordinator watch list, for curiosity’s sake if nothing else. Once on the watch list, positive scouting reports (e.g. consistent hard contact) can paint a slightly more meaningful picture of what kind of player we’re talking about. I won’t pretend to know any more about Smith than what has already been said (intriguing defensive tools, plus arm, consistent hard contact), but it’s a start.