Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

MLB News

Get to know the top 20 MLB Draft prospects

June 9, 2016

The 2016 MLB Draft will take place from tonight through Saturday, beginning with the Draft preview show on MLB Network and today at 6 p.m. ET. Live Draft coverage from MLB Network's Studio 42 begins at 7 p.m., with the top 77 picks being streamed on and broadcast

The 2016 MLB Draft will take place from tonight through Saturday, beginning with the Draft preview show on MLB Network and today at 6 p.m. ET. Live Draft coverage from MLB Network's Studio 42 begins at 7 p.m., with the top 77 picks being streamed on and broadcast on MLB Network.'s exclusive coverage of Day 2 begins with a live Draft show at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, with exclusive coverage of Day 3 beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday.'s coverage includes Draft Central, the Top 200 Draft Prospects list and Draft Tracker, a live interactive application that includes a searchable database of more than 1,500 Draft-eligible players. Every selection will be tweeted live from @MLBDraftTracker, and you can also keep up to date by following @MLBDraft. And get into the Draft conversation by tagging your tweets with #mlbdraft.
But for now, here is a little sampler to get you started. What follows below is an introduction to the 20 biggest names in the Draft, the 20 most likely to hear their name called in the first round. Now is your last chance to get to know them before their path to the big leagues officially begins.
• Draft FAQ: All you need to know
1. Jason Groome, LHP, Barnegat Township (N.J.) HS
Groome was an early favorite to go No. 1 overall to the nearby Phillies. The 17-year-old left-hander certainly has the talent to go at the top of the first round, but a tumultuous year has led to uncertainty about where he'll land.
Profile | Feature
Complete 2016 Draft coverage
2. Riley Pint, RHP, St. Thomas Aquinas HS (Overland Park, Kan.)
Pint is the best mound prospect to come out of Kansas since Wichita State's Mike Pelfrey made a run at the top pick in 2005. He has an electric arm and a fastball that reached as high as 102 mph this spring. While Pint has a huge ceiling, he does come with some risk.
Profile | Feature
3. Kyle Lewis, OF, Mercer
This former dark-horse prospect does big things from a small school. But after proving himself in the Cape Cod League last summer, there is little doubt about his ability: Lewis is potential five-tool guy with high upside.
Profile | Feature
4. A.J. Puk, LHP, Florida
Puk features tantalizing size and stuff -- the 6-foot-7 lefty can hit 99 mph with his fastball and 90 with his slider - but inconsistency and injury concerns have dulled his stock a bit. Still, expect the southpaw scouts are comparing to Mark Mulder to go very high.
Profile | Feature
5. Mickey Moniak, OF, La Costa Canyon (Calif.) HS
A lefty-swinging line-drive hitter from SoCal who can run, Moniak inspired comparisons to Christian Yelich as he raised his stock this spring with every hit. The kid boasts legendary MLB ties. His grandfather played with Ted Williams.
Profile | Feature
6. Corey Ray, OF, Louisville
Ray is poised to be the highest Louisville player ever drafted due to his combination of power and speed. The outfielder would have been an NCAA fantasy star, if such a thing existed. No college player could match his combination of 39 steals and 15 homers entering the NCAA Division I playoffs.
Profile | Feature
7. Nick Senzel, 3B, Tennessee
The Cape Cod League MVP has a chance to edge out Todd Helton (No. 8 overall in 1995) as the highest Volunteer ever drafted thanks to a polished approach that helped him lead the Southeastern Conference in doubles.
Profile | Feature
8. Blake Rutherford, OF, Chaminade College Prep (Canoga Park, Calif.)
Rutherford has been scouted since he was 14 years old and committed to UCLA as a high school freshman. He'll probably never see campus because of the way MLB scouts love his athleticism and all-fields swing.
Profile | Feature
9. Delvin Perez, SS, International Baseball Academy (Puerto Rico)
Perez could become the first Puerto Rican first rounder since Carlos Correa in 2012. He doesn't profile as the same type of hitter, but Perez's glove is advanced for his age.
10. Braxton Garrett, LHP, Florence (Ala.) HS
Alabama's best prep prospect in a decade, Garrett profiles as at least a No. 2 starter. He's thought to have one of the best curveballs in the Draft on top of a low 90s fastball.
11. Matt Manning, RHP, Sheldon (Calif.) HS
A two-sport athlete with a frame like his father, former NBA player Rich Manning, this righty's fastball could already be close to MLB-ready. Scouts salivate when they think of what he'll do when he grows into his 6-foot-6 frame.
12. Forrest Whitley, RHP, Alamo Heights HS (San Antonio)
A three-pitch pitcher with a fastball that touches 97, Whitley is talented and signable enough to possibly be the second high-school pitcher drafted. He resembles Shelby Miller and follows the tradition of a long line of hard-throwing Texas righties.
13. Ian Anderson, RHP, Shenendehowa (N.Y.) HS
Slowed recently by an oblique injury, Anderson still remains a projectable and intriguing future starter. He'll be in attendance at MLB Network studios Thursday to hear his name called, presumably in the first round.
14. Zack Collins, C, Miami
Long considered one of the nation's top hitters, Collins starred for a Hurricanes program that churns out Major Leaguers almost annually. Whether it stays behind the plate or not, Collins' bat remains one of this highly unpredictable Draft's safest bets.
15. Dakota Hudson, RHP, Mississippi State
Another player who benefited from Cape Cod League success, Hudson made the jump from intriguing righty to sure-fire first-rounder last summer. He followed that with a great spring for the Bulldogs, which included separate scoreless innings streaks of 34 2/3 and 27.
Profile | Feature
16. Joey Wentz, LHP, Shawnee Mission East (Kan.) HS
Scouts envision the 6-foot-5 lefty as a front-line Major League starter. Last summer, he showed why he should be that for a National League team: Wentz hit a 543-foot metal bat home run at the Junior HR Derby during All-Star Game festivities in Cincinatti.
17. Joshua Lowe, 3B, Pope HS (Marrieta, Ga.)
Another two-way player, Lowe will probably remain a position player because of his controlled left-handed approach. But he also has a 93-mph fastball to fall back on, if hitting doesn't work out.
18. Alex Kirilloff, OF, Plum HS (Pittsburgh)
The lefty-swinger projects as a corner outfielder at the next level -- one with the chance to rake. Kirilloff could become the highest-drafted Pittsburgh prep player since Neil Walker in 2003.
Profile | Feature
19. Jordan Sheffield, RHP, Vanderbilt
Jordan is the latest member of the Sheffield family to make Major League waves. The Indians made his brother, Justus, a first-round pick in 2014. Their cousin, Tony, was drafted by the Red Sox in 1992. Jordan profiles as a smaller but potentially dominant reliever. 
20. Nolan Jones, 3B, Holy Ghost Prep (Bensalem, Pa.)
Jones is an athletic lefty swinger whose bat will drive his development. Whether he ends up at second base, shortstop, third or left field, Jones' strength is his hit tool.

Joe Trezza is a reporter for based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @joetrezz.