Exploring the Top Draft Prospects in More Detail

As 2023 comes to an end, everyone’s focus is on what 2024 has to offer. In the world of baseball, prospects are the center of attention. MLB Pipeline has recently released its Top 100 Draft Prospects list for the upcoming year. The questions about the draft are flooding in, and in this week’s MLB Pipeline Inbox, we are diving into all things related to the draft.

One of the burning questions is why a second baseman, JJ Wetherholt, is projected to go number 1. While he could indeed go No. 1 to the Cleveland Guardians, a colleague has projected Nick Kurtz to be picked first in the mock draft. The reason for the high position of Wetherholt lies in the fact that the draft class is flooded with college hitters, especially at the top.

The focus on college hitters has led to a situation where none of the top prospects play a premium position. Wetherholt, while projected to play shortstop, is seen as best suited for second base. Despite this, his skill set makes him an exceptional prospect, with a strong hitting ability, average power, and impressive speed. Despite being a second baseman, Wetherholt is expected to reach the big leagues quickly.

With the comparisons to last year’s top prospect Jackson Holliday, the search is on for a 2024 prospect who will have a meteoric rise in the rankings. While there isn’t a clear candidate, there are a few names who have the potential to make a significant jump with a strong performance in the spring. High school lefty Cam Caminiti, college hitter Caleb Lomavita, and Carson Benge at Oklahoma State are a few who could catch the attention of scouts.

Many are curious about the potential of the 2024 draft class and whether any prospects will make a jump into the top 20 of the Top 100. It’s hard to predict at this point, as it depends on how the prospects perform in the upcoming year. However, given the current landscape, it is unlikely that any 2024 prospects will reach the heights of last year’s top prospects.

A hot topic in the baseball world is the performance of Yoshinobu Yamamoto and where he would rank if he qualified in the top 100. However, Yamamoto will not qualify for prospect lists due to his age and professional experience in Japan. Despite this, if he were to be included, there is debate over his potential placement in the top 100, with opinions ranging from the top 10 to the top 20.

Furthermore, there are high expectations for 2023 draftees to make a quick impact in the MLB. Names like Nolan Schanuel, Paul Skenes, Dylan Crews, and Wyatt Langford are being touted as potential Rookie of the Year contenders due to their impressive skill sets. Additionally, the Twins’ prospect Walker Jenkins is expected to move up the ranks quickly, possibly making his way to the big leagues as early as 2025.

The anticipation for the 2024 baseball draft is at an all-time high, with prospects making their mark and creating excitement for the upcoming season. As the new year approaches, the baseball world is eagerly waiting to see which prospects will shine and make an impact in the MLB.


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