Midseason College Top 150 Prospects

More Prospect Coverage:
Frankie Piliere’s Draft Buzz: Week 9
Dillon Tate Scouting Report/Breakdown
Dillon Tate’s Golden Spikes Spotlight

Every draft class has talent that could potentially change the future of an organization, but some classes challenge a scouting department more than others when it comes to unearthing that talent. The 2015 draft class is not overflowing with obviously game-changing talent, but what it does have is depth of quality players with upside.

This is not an easy group of players to evaluate. There are no Carlos Rodon or Jeff Hoffman-level college arms, particularly now that Michael Matuella has muddied the early first round picture after going down with Tommy John surgery. As a disclaimer, on pure talent alone, Matuella is still viewed by many as the number one talent in this crop, but exactly how his injury impacts his stock remains to be seen, and that uncertainly is reflected in his ranking. But, this is a class that will challenge every scouting department in baseball to do even more due diligence then ever before in the later rounds in the draft, and perhaps even in the early rounds as clubs look to get creative with their selections.

Even our newly crowned number one prospect, UC Santa Barbara’s Dillon Tate, is an outside the norm type of prospect. He entered the season as a reliever, and is still somewhat raw in certain aspects of his game. But, it’s the pure upside that continues to enthrall scouts when it comes to Tate. It’s that type of yet to be mined potential that’s somewhat of a microcosm for what this college crop can be despite the lack of slam dunk like Kris Bryant or a Stephen Strasburg.

UCSB's Dillon Tate was just terrific against Fresno State. (Kendall Rogers)UCSB’s Dillon Tate is showing four plus pitches. (Kendall Rogers)

There is talent to be had, but it just won’t come in the form of polished, clear cut, fast track big leaguers coming out of the college ranks. Instead, there will be more projection involved with high upside talents like Cody Ponce, Phil Bickford, or Josh Staumont. And, there have been enormous opportunities to step forward for pitchers like Missouri State’s Jon Harris, who through his stellar performance has made himself a near lock first round draft choice.

This was a spring in which certain players, particularly pitchers, have had to step up and fill the void at the top, and Harris has done just that. Armed with a 90-94 mph fastball and, when he’s right, two above average secondary offerings, Harris is just the right combination of polish and projection to fascinate scouts as an early draft choice. He’s arguably grabbed the title this spring of “fastest rising” draft prospect.

Scouts around the nation still are left craving position players, however. To their credit, it has been the hitters that have stepped up and put up the numbers that have gotten the bulk of the attention from those scouts. The Arizona tandem of Kevin Newman and Scott Kingery are both hitting over .400 at the halfway mark of the season and have seen their stock skyrocket this spring. And, following a slow start, Boston College slugger, Chris Shaw has erupted in recent weeks and put himself back in the top 50 picture.

There is no issue with the depth of this college crop. Quality can be found 150 players deep, but the value and upside of these players will be in the eye of the beholder more than any time in recent memory. With just under two months until the big day, specifically on the collegiate front, this is a wide open draft class that is going to continue to evolve and give us new faces being run up the board. For now, however, let’s take a look at the best 150 college prospects that are topping scouts’ follow lists right now.

The Top 150 College Prospects list was formulated based on discussions with scouts around the nation, as well as first hand scouting observations. The ranking committee at includes, primarily, national prospect writer Frankie Piliere, along with contributions from national writers Aaron Fitt and Kendall Rogers.

As a preview of our Top 150 prospects list, below are the top seven ranked college prospects. The rest of the list is exclusive to subscribers:

1Dillon TateRHPUC Santa Barbara
2Dansby SwansonSSVanderbilt
3Alex BregmanSSLSU
4Kyle FunkhouserRHPLouisville
5Nathan KirbyLHPVirginia
6Walker BuehlerRHPVanderbilt
7Ian HappOFCincinnati


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