2024 mock: An early peek at potential Top 20 Draft picks

July 18th, 2023

Sure, the dust has barely settled from the 2023 Draft, but there’s no rest for the weary. It’s time to start digging into the Class of 2024.

If the scouting industry can do it, so can we! After all, many of these players are already out and being seen by scouts at events like the PDP League and All-American Game on the high school side and the Cape Cod League and USA Baseball’s College National Team trials on the collegiate side.

Below is a very early look at what a top 20 could look like if a team needed to build a 2024 Draft board right now. While there will be a Draft lottery to determine the top of the first round, we’ll strictly use the reverse order of the MLB standings as of Tuesday to make a Draft order. And while this list will change often between now and the end of the summer, and will undoubtedly be impacted by fall reports before we put out a new Top 100 in December, it should be noted that last year’s version of this story included 13 players who ended up going in the first round this year, with two more who went in the compensation round.

1. A’s: Chase Burns, RHP, Wake Forest
Burns is slated to join Wake Forest after having entered the transfer portal. He’s coming off a year where he started and relieved for Tennessee, striking out 14.3 per nine while walking just 2.8 with a fastball that averaged a touch over 96 mph and an upper-80s slider that generated a 61 percent miss rate in 2023.

2. Royals: JJ Wetherholt, 2B/3B, West Virginia
Wetherholt won the Division I batting title by hitting .449 as a sophomore in 2023. He also slugged .787, with 16 homers and 24 doubles, while striking out in just 8.2 percent of his plate appearances. He could raise his profile even more if he gets the chance to play shortstop next year, but the bat alone is enough to put him here.

3. Rockies: Konnor Griffin, OF/RHP, Jackson Prep (Florence, Miss.)
The 6-foot-4 projectable two-way player is a five-tool type as a position player. A Louisiana State recruit who reclassified from the Class of 2025, Griffin has tremendous bat speed from the right side of the plate and has plus speed along with a plus arm that can get the radar gun hot from the mound, though he might be better as a position player long-term.

4. Nationals: Cam Caminiti, LHP/OF, Saguaro HS (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
The industry was playing catch up as Caminiti reclassified from 2025 right at the start of the summer. A cousin of late big leaguer Ken Caminiti, Cam is another LSU recruit who wants to play both ways for as long as possible. On the mound, the left-hander has the chance to throw really hard with a very good feel to spin.

5. White Sox: Brody Brecht, RHP, Iowa
A former two-sport guy who was also a wide receiver at Iowa, Brecht is now focusing only on baseball, which could help him reach his considerable upside. The 6-foot-4 right-hander needs to refine his command, but the stuff is legit, with a fastball that touches triple digits and an upper-80s slider that misses a ton of bats.

6. Pirates: Nick Kurtz, 1B, Wake Forest
If you’re looking for big left-handed power, then Kurtz is your guy. He hit 16 homers and had a 1.108 OPS as a freshman in 2022 and then set a new standard by mashing 24 balls over the fence and finishing with a 1.311 OPS. He helps himself by walking in 21.2 percent of his plate appearances over his first two seasons combined while striking out just 16.8 percent of the time.

7. Cardinals: Tommy White, 3B, Louisiana State
After hitting 27 homers and slugging .757 as a freshman at North Carolina State, Tommy Tanks transferred to LSU and kept on raking, with 24 homers and 105 RBIs, which tied him for the Division I lead, as he helped the Tigers win the College World Series.

8. Tigers: Jac Caglianone, LHP/1B, Florida
Caglianone came back from Tommy John surgery and showed off considerable two-way prowess as a sophomore at Florida in 2023, hitting 33 homers to lead the nation at the plate and striking out 10.5 per nine on the mound. There’s reason to believe there’s better command (6.6 BB/9) to come as he gets further removed from the surgery, with a fastball that touches 99 mph and potentially solid secondary offerings in his changeup and slider.

9. Cubs: PJ Morlando, OF, Summerville HS (Summerville, S.C.)
The winner of the High School Home Run Derby that took place in Seattle during All-Star festivities, Morlando has a simple setup at the plate and makes loud contact, with some of the best raw power at the plate and the discipline to tap into it. He’s committed to South Carolina.

10. Mets: Noah Franco, OF/LHP, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
Another high schooler who reclassified from 2025, Franco hasn’t committed to a college yet, but has two-way potential. At the plate, he doesn’t have the prettiest swing, but makes good contact with good loft. On the mound, he’s up to 94 mph with his fastball to go along with a slider and changeup.

11. Padres: Charlie Condon, 1B/OF, Georgia
Condon somehow couldn’t get on the field for the Bulldogs in 2022, so he redshirted. Then he emerged as one of the best power bats in the country, hitting 25 homers and finishing with a .386/.484/.800 line, leading the SEC in slugging and setting the conference record for a freshman with those 25 long balls.

12. Guardians: Derek Curiel, OF, Orange Lutheran HS (West Covina, Calif.)
The top performer in PDP League play earlier this summer, Curiel has at least plus speed and knows how to use it. The LSU recruit has excellent zone coverage from the left side of the plate and can make a lot of hard contact. His speed really plays in the outfield as well.

13. Angels: Michael Mullinax, OF, North Cobb Christian School (Canton, Ga.)
The toolsy outfielder is committed to Georgia, a switch-hitter who has a better swing from the right side. But he sees the ball well, stays back and explodes through the zone to generate hard contact while his speed puts pressure on defenses as well.

14. Mariners: Bryce Rainer, 3B/RHP, Harvard Westlake HS (Simi Valley, Calif.)
In a class with plenty of two-way players, some feel Rainer is the best. The Texas recruit is known a bit more right now as a position player, one who has an easy swing and big-time power along with an arm that works on the left side of the infield. But some think he could be even better on the mound as a right-hander who really knows how to shape the ball.

15. Yankees: Thatcher Hurd, RHP, Louisiana State
Hurd transferred from UCLA to join LSU for 2023 and while his overall numbers don’t jump off the page, he did strike out 11.9 per nine and the 6-foot-4 right-hander tossed six strong innings in the deciding game of the College World Series. He has a fastball up to 98 mph, a slider and curve that both miss bats and feel for a changeup.

16. Reds: Hagen Smith, LHP, Arkansas
Smith could develop into the best college lefty in the class, one who struck out 13.7 in his sophomore season at Arkansas. He can run his fastball up to the upper-90s, though it averages around 93, missing a fair amount of bats. But his low-80s slider is even harder to hit, eliciting a 48 percent miss rate in 2023.

17. Red Sox: Vance Honeycutt, OF, North Carolina
Honeycutt might end up being a polarizing prospect next year. On the one hand, the power-speed combination is real, with 25 homers and 29 steals in 2022 and double-digits in both categories this past year. But there might be questions about his hit tool, with a 25.5 percent strikeout rate in his two years with the Tar Heels.

18. Phillies: Braden Montgomery, OF, Stanford
Montgomery has toyed with hitting and pitching at Stanford, but seems destined to focus on his outfield play. After a .336/.461/.611 year and 35 homers over two college seasons, that might be a good move, and he might be doing it at a different school after entering the transfer portal.

19. Marlins: Owen Paino, SS, Roy C. Ketcham HS (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.)
Big for shortstop at 6-foot-3, Paino has excellent defensive instincts. He’s a left-handed hitting infielder with a simple swing geared for contact to all fielids, with the Ole Miss recruit reminding some of Mariners 2022 first-round pick Cole Young.

20. D-backs: Cade Arrambide, C, Tomball HS (Tomball, Texas)
Yet another LSU recruit, Arrambide is the best backstop in the class, especially defensively, with a cannon for an arm. He’s more power over hit, but there’s a ton of pop generated from his 6-foot-3 frame.