Top 100 Seniors
Top 100 Juniors
Top 100 Freshmen
by California’s Rich Standards, 2013
Draft Promises to be One For Ages
weather conducive to baseball, along with the state’s prominent
year-round scout-league programs and a population base upwards of 35
million, California is the gold standard by which other states are
measured when it comes to the production of baseball talent.
Golden State has yielded more draft picks every year since the
baseball draft was conceived in 1965—and it’s never been close.
Not only has it been about quantity, but quality, too, as California
players have populated the early stages of the draft.
1,260 first-round picks through the years, 301 (or 23.9) have ties to
California. That includes 107 players drafted directly out of
California colleges (104) and junior colleges (3), 168 from
California high schools and 26 from other colleges around the country
who attended California high schools. On 10 occasions, the first
overall pick in the draft has come from that state.
overwhelming number of California first-round picks came from the
high-school ranks through 1983 (102 vs. 14 from college), including a
record 11 in 1972. But that ratio began to turn in favor of college
talent from that point on, prompted mainly by changes in draft rules
as they applied to college talent and a philosophical change on the
part of major-league clubs.
three occasions (1984, 1987 and 1992), as many as six California
college players have been drafted in the first round, and the 2000
draft actually featured seven, if junior-college talent is factored
into the equation.
those numbers lending historical perspective, California’s impact
on the draft could reach new heights in 2013 as the state’s current
crop of college sophomores includes at least nine players who have
realistic expectations of being first-round picks a year from now.
Perfect Game’s recent ranking of the Top 300 Prospects in
the 2013 draft class, all nine factored into the top 31 spots,
beginning with Stanford outfielder Austin Wilson at No. 2 and ending
with Fresno State outfielder Aaron Judge at No. 31. Both are
highly-athletic talents who have just scratched the surface of their
California Nine obviously factors prominently in the accompanying
list of the nation’s Top 100 Sophomores in the current
college class. While a lot could change over the next two college
seasons to possibly impact the draft status of the players, it is
safe to say that California will be a popular destination for scouts
a year from now. Additionally, eight of the nine are slated to play
this summer in the Cape Cod League.
by the depth of premium college talent in California, the 2013 draft
is already shaping up as one with a decided college flair. Eight of
the first nine players on Perfect Game’s list of the Top 300
Prospects in that class are current college sophomores.
2013 college crop has obviously been bolstered by the inclusion of
University of Florida righthander Karsten Whitson and University of
San Diego righthander Dylan Covey, two players that went unsigned as
first-rounders two years ago. Whitson was picked ninth overall by the
San Diego Padres while Covey was taken by the Milwaukee Brewers with
the 14th pick.
six previous occasions—most recently as 1996, when four of the top
12 picks were declared ‘loophole free agents’ and ended up
signing lucrative deals with the expansion Arizona Diamondbacks and
Tampa Bay Rays—have two players selected in the top half of the
first round elected not to sign.
6-foot-4, 220-pound Whitson is slated to become the No. 2 starter
this spring for Florida, the nation’s consensus No. 1 college team,
after going 8-1, 2.40 with 28 walks and 92 strikeouts in 97 innings
for the Gators as a freshman. He is the nation’s No. 1-ranked
6-2, 195-pound Covey, meanwhile, struggled as a freshman for USD,
posting just a 1-3, 7.86 record in nine starts. In 34 innings, he
walked 28 and struck out 29. His status this spring for the Toreros
is a little less certain because of the command issues that impacted
his 2011 season.
future may also be clouded, to a degree, by how he handles a diabetic
condition. The Brewers elected not to sign Covey in 2010 when it was
diagnosed as part of a routine physical that he has Type 1 diabetes.
Nonetheless, he is ranked at No. 11 among the nation’s top
sophomores—and No. 3 in California’s deep crop.
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