The Minnesota Twins have the No. 1 overall pick in the Major League Baseball Draft.
The draft kicks off on Monday, when the Twins will be officially on the clock. The Twins are followed by the Cincinnati Reds, San Diego Padres, Tampa Bay Rays and Atlanta Braves.
Special correspondent Frankie Piliere, the national prospect writer for D1Baseball.com and a former scout with the Texas Rangers, ranks the prospects based on interviews with scouts, team executives and draft experts.
1. Hunter Greene, RHP, Notre Dame High (Sherman Oaks, Calif.)
Greene not only has a bright future on the mound but also has first-round talent as a shortstop. Armed with a 94- to 98-mph fastball and a sharp breaking ball, Greene is among the highest-ceiling high school pitchers in recent memory.
Height, weight: 6-4, 215
Could go: Teams have been hesitant over the years to take a high school right-hander first overall. Greene will not slip beyond the San Diego Padres at third, and his most likely landing spot is with the Cincinnati Reds with the second pick.
2. Kyle Wright, RHP, Vanderbilt
Wright caught fire down the stretch of the season, showing a 92- to 97-mph fastball and an advanced feel for his off-speed arsenal. His command could put him on a fast track to the big leagues.
Height, weight: 6-4, 220
Could go: The Atlanta Braves, who pick fifth, appear to be the floor, but Wright might be gaining steam as the favorite on the Minnesota Twins’ short list for first overall selection. His polish makes him a safe investment.
3. Brendan McKay, LHP-1B, Louisville
The best two-way superstar in college baseball in recent years, McKay makes a case as a lefty pitching prospect and as lefty slugging first baseman. His advanced feel for three pitches (fastball, curveball and changeup) makes him particularly enticing on the mound.
Height, weight: 6-2, 220
Could go: McKay is unlikely to slip beyond the top five but could do so based on his price tag. He’s in play for the first overall pick, but teams such as the Arizona Diamondbacks (No. 7) and Philadelphia Phillies (No. 8) could be willing to pay his hefty price if he slips to them.
4. MacKenzie Gore, LHP, Whiteville (N.C.) HS
A projectable lefty with advanced command, a full four-pitch mix (fastball, curveball, slider and changeup) and a 90- to 93-mph fastball, Gore is as complete a package as you’ll find out of high school.
Height, weight: 6-2, 170
Could go: Gore might not get beyond the Oakland Athletics, who pick sixth, and looks likely to be picked third, fourth or fifth by the Padres, Tampa Bay Rays or Braves. Atlanta has a long history of success in drafting high school arms.
5. Royce Lewis, SS, JSerra Catholic (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) HS
There’s not much Lewis can’t do on a field. He has the tools to play shortstop or center field as a pro, shows above-average speed and projects to be a strong power threat from the right side.
Height, weight: 6-2, 188
Could go: Lewis is unlikely to make it out of the first five picks, with Tampa Bay and Atlanta looking like his most likely destinations. Both have a history of taking high-upside prep players.
6. J.B. Bukauskas, RHP, North Carolina
A dynamic strikeout artist, Bukauskas has been dominant for UNC, showcasing a 92- to 96-mph fastball and a wipeout slider.
Height, weight: 6-0, 201
Could go: Bukauskas has been linked to Oakland all spring and is unlikely to fall beyond the first nine selections. Oakland was not afraid to take another undersized righty (Sonny Gray) in the first round in 2011.
7. Pavin Smith, 1B, Virginia
The best pure hitter in college baseball, Smith achieved the astonishing feat of homering more times than he struck out in 2017. He has 30-homer power and one of the sweetest lefty swings in recent draft memory.
Height, weight: 6-2, 210
Could go: Smith is rumored to be on the Twins’ list at No. 1 but is more likely to land with either the Athletics, Diamondbacks or Phillies.
8. Adam Haseley, OF, Virginia
The owner of arguably the fastest hands in college baseball, Haseley brings an assortment of tools to the table, including above-average speed and a strong throwing arm from the outfield.
Height, weight: 6-1, 195
Could go: The Braves could take a chance on him at No. 5, but Haseley is most likely to go off the board between picks six and 12. The Los Angeles Angels have actively looked for college hitters, and Haseley fits the athletic profile they’re seeking.
9. Shane Baz, RHP, Concordia Lutheran (Tomball, Texas) HS
The fastest-rising pitcher in the high school class, Baz has been an eye-opener in recent months, as he has touched as high as 99 mph. His sharp slider and clean delivery only add to his profile.
Height, weight: 6-3, 190
Could go: Another name the Braves are considering, Baz has also garnered interest from Arizona, Philadelphia and the Houston Astros (No. 15). Arizona is targeting power arms and power bats.
10. Trevor Rogers, LHP, Carlsbad (N.M.) HS
One of the most projectable, cleanest lefty arms we’ve seen out of the high school ranks since Madison Bumgarner, Rogers has touched 96 mph and has a tight, swing-and-miss slider.
Height, weight: 6-5, 190
Could go: The Milwaukee Brewers (No. 9) have been linked to Rogers, as have the Miami Marlins (No. 13), Kansas City Royals (No. 14) and New York Yankees (No. 16). The Marlins have an affinity for high-upside lefty pitchers.
11. Austin Beck, OF, North Davidson (Lexington, N.C.) HS
Beck’s stock has soared this spring, as he has shown off an intriguing array of tools, including speed and good power potential from the right side. He is one of the highest-upside players in this class and has improved rapidly.
Height, weight: 6-1, 190
Could go: Beck could go as high as fourth to the Rays and has significant interest from the Brewers, Yankees, and Athletics.
12. Nick Pratto, 1B, Huntington Beach (Calif.) HS
Arguably the most polished high school hitter in the class, Pratto is athletic enough to also profile in the outfield at the next level. His powerful, all-fields hitting approach from the left side remains his main selling point.
Height, weight: 6-2, 195
Could go: The Yankees, Astros and Detroit Tigers (No. 18) have shown the steadiest interest. The Yankees have mined talent consistently in Southern California in recent years.
13. Jeren Kendall, OF, Vanderbilt
If you’re looking for a high-upside college hitter, Kendall is the player for you. He has above-average power from the left side and good speed. If he can keep his strikeouts in check, he has star-level upside.
Height, weight: 6-0, 190
Could go: The Chicago White Sox (No. 11) and Angels (No. 10) have been steadily linked to Kendall, as have the Royals.
14. Jo Adell, OF, Ballard (Louisville) HS
Adell has superstar potential but will require patience. He hit 25 home runs this spring, has electrifying arm strength and speed and has a game-changing skill set. But he will require polishing.
Height, weight: 6-3, 205
Could go: Throughout the spring, the Royals have been all over Adell, who has also been linked with the White Sox.
15. Jake Burger, 3B, Missouri State
Burger has a tremendous track record of right-handed power and plate discipline. He is a potential .400 on-base percentage, 30-homer-type bat as a big-leaguer and has the type of approach that should adapt seamlessly as a professional.
Height, weight: 6-2, 210
Could go: The Pittsburgh Pirates (No. 12) and Astros have done due diligence on Burger, who has gotten interest as high as sixth from the Athletics.
16. Keston Hiura, OF-2B, UC-Irvine
This is an underrated crop of college hitters, and Hiura is another hitter with an advanced hit tool and good power. His position will be a question mark, but his right-handed bat is undeniable.
Height, weight: 5-11, 190
Could go: Philadelphia has done its homework on Hiura, but his most likely landing spot is between 15 and 22, with teams such as the Astros and New York Mets (No.20) showing interest.
17. D.L. Hall, LHP, Valdosta (Ga.) High
Hall has elite-level arm speed and a hopping 91- to 95-mph fastball to go with it. His sharp curveball and downhill plane give him the tools to be a front-line starter as a professional.
Height, weight: 6-2, 170
Could go: The Brewers, Marlins and Royals have shown the most consistent interest.
18. David Peterson, LHP, Oregon
The big lefty enjoyed a historically dominant 2017 season, proving to be the most prolific strikeout pitcher in the nation. He owns a 90- to 93-mph fastball and a swing-and-miss slider.
Height, weight: 6-6, 235
Could go: The Marlins have shown major interest at 13, and the Seattle Mariners (No. 17) and Yankees have shown solid interest throughout the spring.
19. Griffin Canning, RHP, UCLA
Canning has steadily increased his stock with an outstanding spring. With a 90- to 94-mph fastball and sharp curveball, Canning also locates well, making him one of the easiest pitchers to project in this class.
Height, weight: 6-2, 180
Could go: The Yankees have been on Canning all spring, and he also has gotten interest from the Mariners, Mets and Tigers.
20. Alex Faedo, RHP, Florida
Faedo has had his ups and downs this spring, but the powerful righty continues to intrigue scouts with a 92- to 95-mph fastball and a sharp, late-biting slider.
Height, weight: 6-5, 220
Could go: Faedo could go as high as the top 10 to someone such as the Angels but also has heavy interest from the Mariners and Tigers in the late teens.
21. Logan Warmoth, SS, North Carolina
The top shortstop in the college class, Warmoth has 20-homer power from the right side and has the athleticism to potentially stick on the left side of the diamond at the big-league level.
Height, weight: 6-0, 190
Could go: The Toronto Blue Jays (No. 22), San Francisco Giants (No. 19) and Boston Red Sox (No. 24) have shown significant interest, as have the Tigers.
22. Evan White, 1B, Kentucky
Another in a long string of polished college hitters, White has impressed scouts with his discipline and Gold Glove-caliber defense at first base.
Height, weight: 6-3, 205
Could go: The Giants — with their track record of going after polished college hitters such as Buster Posey, Joe Panik, Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt — are a natural fit for White. The Mariners, Los Angeles Dodgers (No.23) and Baltimore Orioles (No. 21) have also shown interest.
23. Tanner Houck, RHP, Missouri
Houck hasn’t shown his top velocity this spring. But we have seen him as high as 98 mph in the past, and his deception and slider feel make him a potential fast-track candidate as a pro.
Height, weight: 6-5, 218
Could go: The Orioles have shown interest, and teams such as the Mariners and Washington Nationals (No.25) will be in play.
24. Sam Carlson, RHP, Burnsville (Minn.) HS
Carlson has highly advanced command of his 91- to 93-mph fastball. He has late life on his fastball and has flashed above-average bite on his breaking ball.
Height, weight: 6-4, 208
Could go: Carlson has gotten interest all over the first round, including from the Mets and Texas Rangers, who have two first-round picks (No. 26 and
25. Nate Pearson, RHP, College of Central Florida
Pearson touched 101 mph in one of his most recent appearances in front of scouts, and he has continued to show improvements with his command and breaking ball.
Height, weight: 6-6, 245
Could go: The Red Sox, Chicago Cubs (No. 27) and Blue Jays have shown the most significant interest.
26. Bubba Thompson, OF, McGill-Toolen (Mobile, Ala.) HS
Thompson has one of the best assortments of tools of any player in the class. He has true center-field tools, is a two-sport athlete (baseball and football) and has shown rapid improvement with the bat. The Dodgers are said to be looking for tools and upside to add to their system, and Thompson fits that description.
Height, weight: 6-2, 180
Could go: The Yankees, Royals, Dodgers and Giants have shown heavy interest.
27. Alex Lange, RHP, LSU
An aggressive right-hander with a big-game reputation, Lange has a 91- to 95-mph fastball and a good 12-to-6 curveball that will allow him to miss bats at an impressive rate as a professional.
Height, weight: 6-3, 199
Could go: The Nationals like polished college arms, and Lange has been linked to them.
28. Brian Miller, OF, North Carolina
Left-handed-hitting Miller has average or better tools across the board, including above-average speed and defensive skills in center field.
Height, weight: 6-1, 186
Could go: Miller will get consideration from teams picking as high as the Giants (19th) but will be in play anywhere from the 20-35 range.
29. Heliot Ramos, OF, Leadership Christian Academy (Puerto Rico)
Ramos is one of the most intriguing impact hitters in this high school class. His power plays to all parts of the field.
Height, weight: 6-2, 185
Could go: The Dodgers have considered Ramos with their first pick, as have the Texas Rangers (No. 26).
30. Brendon Little, LHP, State College of Florida
Little has devastating stuff from the left side, including one of the best 12-to-6 lefty curveballs in recent memory.
Height, weight: 6-2, 215.
Could go: Several teams, including the Cubs, Blue Jays and Rangers, have taken looks at Little at the back end of the first round. The Rangers have not been afraid to take high-upside power arms in recent drafts. Alex Speas, Dillon Tate and Michael Matuella were high-octane pitchers with question marks when the Rangers picked them early in the last two drafts.
© 2017 USATODAY.COM