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2023 Draft prospects rankings on future list

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Pipeline Inbox: 2023 Draft prospects rankings on future list

\n”,”providerName”:”Twitter”,”providerUrl”:”https://twitter.com”,”type”:”oembed”,”width”:550,”contentType”:”rich”},{“__typename”:”Markdown”,”content”:”With four of the five clear best prospects playing the same position, it has to be outfielders. Besides Crews, Langford, Jenkins, Clark — all of whom would be legitimate candidates to go No. 1 overall in a typical Draft — other potential first-rounders include Vanderbilt’s Enrique Bradfield, high schooler Dillon Head, Virginia Tech’s Jack Hurley and Arizona’s Chase Davis.\n\nThe fastest the first four outfielders have come off the board in one Draft is the top seven picks in 2003: Delmon Young (No. 1), Chris Lubanski (No. 5), Ryan Harvey (No. 6) and Nick Markakis (No. 7). That record should fall in July. The only other times that four outfielders have gone in the first 10 selections were 1995 (Darin Erstad at No. 1, Jose Cruz Jr. at No. 3, Jaime Jones at No. 6, Geoff Jenkins at No. 9) and 1989 (Jeff Jackson at No. 4, Donald Harris at No. 5, Paul Coleman at No. 6 and Earl Cunningham at No. 8).”,”type”:”text”},{“__typename”:”OEmbed”,”html”:”

Can you expand future mocks by a couple picks to give the Mets something !?

— Joe DeMayo (@PSLToFlushing) May 23, 2023

\n\n”,”providerName”:”Twitter”,”providerUrl”:”https://twitter.com”,”type”:”oembed”,”width”:550,”contentType”:”rich”},{“__typename”:”Markdown”,”content”:”I’ll have another first-round projection out next week and as it gets closer to the Draft starting on July 9, we’ll have a lot more intel and I’m sure we’ll extend our predictions through the entire supplemental first round. That would encompass both the Mets (No. 32) and the Dodgers (No. 36), whose top picks dropped 10 spots because they exceeded the competitive balance tax threshold by more than $40 million.\n\nTo hold you over until then, here’s a guess for both of those clubs:\n\n**32\\. Mets: Brock Wilken, 3B, Wake Forest** \nWilken has set single-season (26) and career (66) home run records at Wake Forest, the No. 1-ranked team in the nation. Pete Alonso had a similar offensive profile when the Mets made him a second-round pick out of Florida in 2016.\n\n**36\\. Dodgers: Tanner Witt, RHP, Texas** \nThe Dodgers made a strong run at the then-unsignable Witt in high school three years ago, and he was a slam-dunk first-rounder before having Tommy John surgery in March 2022. He returned to the mound on May 1 and while his stuff hasn’t come all the way back yet, this could be a steal.”,”type”:”text”}],”contentType”:”news”,”subHeadline”:null,”summary”:”In my last Pipeline Inbox two weeks ago, I discussed how the consensus top five prospects in this Draft (Louisiana State outfielder Dylan Crews and right-hander Paul Skenes, Florida outfielder Wyatt Langford, high school outfielders Walker Jenkins and Max Clark) are the best top five in at least a decade.”,”tagline({\”formatString\”:\”none\”})”:null,”tags”:[{“__typename”:”InternalTag”,”slug”:”storytype-article”,”title”:”Article”,”type”:”article”},{“__typename”:”ContributorTag”,”slug”:”jim-callis”,”title”:”Jim Callis”,”type”:”contributor”},{“__typename”:”TaxonomyTag”,”slug”:”mlb-top-prospects”,”title”:”MLB Top Prospects”,”type”:”taxonomy”},{“__typename”:”TaxonomyTag”,”slug”:”apple-news”,”title”:”Apple News”,”type”:”taxonomy”}],”type”:”story”,”thumbnail”:”https://img.mlbstatic.com/mlb-images/image/upload/{formatInstructions}/mlb/c7tdzufbqnxyql4ilalb”,”title”:”Pipeline Inbox: 2023 Draft prospects rankings on future list”}},”Person:686611″:{“__typename”:”Person”,”id”:686611},”Person:703601″:{“__typename”:”Person”,”id”:703601}}}
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45 minutes ago

In my last Pipeline Inbox two weeks ago, I discussed how the consensus top five prospects in this Draft (Louisiana State outfielder Dylan Crews and right-hander Paul Skenes, Florida outfielder Wyatt Langford, high school outfielders Walker Jenkins and Max Clark) are the best top five in at least a decade. That prompted more questions about the top five, so let’s get to them…

The top five prospects in the upcoming Draft are pretty much a consensus. Among those five, which ones would immediately make the Top 100 Prospects list and where? — Dwayne H., DeSoto, Texas

In each of the last two years, 11 players have gone from the Draft to our midseason Top 100. All five of Crews, Skenes, Langford, Jenkins and Clark will clear the bar rather easily and certainly should rank on the top half of the list.

Several players will graduate from the current Top 100 before we update a couple of months from now. Here’s where I’d place Crews and Co. on the current list, comparing them to prospects at the same position who already have proven themselves against tougher competition in the Minors.

A national crosschecker told me this spring that he’d take Crews over everyone on our preseason Top 100, with the exception of Gunnar Henderson. I won’t be that aggressive, but he could fit ahead of the Nationals’ James Wood (No. 7) on the high end and no lower than ahead of the Cubs’ Pete Crow-Armstrong (No. 13) on the low end.

The only pitchers on our Top 100 who can match Skenes’ combination of stuff and strike are the Marlins’ Eury Pérez (No. 6) and the Phillies’ Andrew Painter (No. 10), and Painter has yet to pitch this year after spraining his elbow during Spring Training. Skenes and Crews will be linked just as closely on the Top 100 as they have been at LSU.

Langford has torn up the Southeastern Conference as much as Crews has, so he wouldn’t rank too far behind him. You could debate his ceiling versus the floor of the Brewers’ Sal Frelick (No. 22). I’d be more conservative with the two high schoolers, who have even more upside, but I’d place Jenkins and Clark in the same neighborhood as the Yankees’ Jasson Domínguez (No. 35).

What team is most likely to go off script in the top five picks in the Draft, causing one of the consensus top five players to fall to No. 6 or 7? What player would that be for? — Matthew B., Minneapolis

Pittsburgh may have done a discount deal with Henry Davis when it had the No. 1 pick in 2021, but there wasn’t a Crews or Skenes (or Langford or Jenkins or Clark) on the board two years ago. I don’t really see any reason for any of the first five teams (Pirates, National, Tigers, Rangers, Twins) to veer away from the consensus top five talents.

If one of them does, I guess Minnesota would be the best choice. The Twins select fifth and perhaps they won’t love whichever of the big five is available as much as they did the others, leading them to cut a deal to save money so they can spend lavishly on pick No. 34.

Minnesota doesn’t have much catching in its organization, so in this scenario maybe it would be attracted to Virginia’s Kyle Teel, who fits somewhere in the top 10 selections on talent. Tennessee right-hander Chase Dollander struck out a season-high 13 in his last start, so maybe the Twins could opt to take a pitcher they wouldn’t have expected to be available coming into the year.

Again, however, I don’t really see this happening.

With four of the five clear best prospects playing the same position, it has to be outfielders. Besides Crews, Langford, Jenkins, Clark — all of whom would be legitimate candidates to go No. 1 overall in a typical Draft — other potential first-rounders include Vanderbilt’s Enrique Bradfield, high schooler Dillon Head, Virginia Tech’s Jack Hurley and Arizona’s Chase Davis.

The fastest the first four outfielders have come off the board in one Draft is the top seven picks in 2003: Delmon Young (No. 1), Chris Lubanski (No. 5), Ryan Harvey (No. 6) and Nick Markakis (No. 7). That record should fall in July. The only other times that four outfielders have gone in the first 10 selections were 1995 (Darin Erstad at No. 1, Jose Cruz Jr. at No. 3, Jaime Jones at No. 6, Geoff Jenkins at No. 9) and 1989 (Jeff Jackson at No. 4, Donald Harris at No. 5, Paul Coleman at No. 6 and Earl Cunningham at No. 8).

I’ll have another first-round projection out next week and as it gets closer to the Draft starting on July 9, we’ll have a lot more intel and I’m sure we’ll extend our predictions through the entire supplemental first round. That would encompass both the Mets (No. 32) and the Dodgers (No. 36), whose top picks dropped 10 spots because they exceeded the competitive balance tax threshold by more than $40 million.

To hold you over until then, here’s a guess for both of those clubs:

32. Mets: Brock Wilken, 3B, Wake Forest
Wilken has set single-season (26) and career (66) home run records at Wake Forest, the No. 1-ranked team in the nation. Pete Alonso had a similar offensive profile when the Mets made him a second-round pick out of Florida in 2016.

36. Dodgers: Tanner Witt, RHP, Texas
The Dodgers made a strong run at the then-unsignable Witt in high school three years ago, and he was a slam-dunk first-rounder before having Tommy John surgery in March 2022. He returned to the mound on May 1 and while his stuff hasn’t come all the way back yet, this could be a steal.



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