The Draft rankings have expanded! Here are the top tools

June 27th, 2024

We’ve tweaked and expanded our 2024 Draft rankings for the last time, running the list out to the Top 250. Now less than three weeks away from the start of the Draft, we're getting a clearer picture of how the scouting industry is stacking up the talent in this class.

The top 10:
1. Travis Bazzana, 2B, Oregon State
2. Charlie Condon, OF/3B, Georgia
3. Jac Caglianone, 1B/LHP, Florida
4. JJ Wetherholt, SS/2B, West Virginia
5. Hagen Smith, LHP, Arkansas
6. Chase Burns, RHP, Wake Forest
7. Nick Kurtz, 1B, Wake Forest
8. Braden Montgomery, OF, Texas A&M
9. Konnor Griffin, SS/OF, Jackson Prep (MS)
10. Bryce Rainer, SS, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA)
Complete list »

Here's a look at the top tools in the class, running through the usual categories: Hit, power, speed, arm and defense for hitters and fastball, curve, slider, changeup and control for pitchers.

Best hitter: Travis Bazzana, 2B, Oregon State (65 grade)
After hitting .374/.500/.622 as a sophomore and then winning the Cape Cod League batting title with a .375 average last summer, Bazzana took another step forward this spring. He finished with a .407/.568/.911 line, striking out in just 9.1 percent of his plate appearances and walking 25.7 percent of the time. He swung and missed just 16 percent of the time and registered a very small 17 percent chase rate.
Also considered: JJ Wetherholt, SS/2B, West Virginia

Best power: Charlie Condon, OF/3B, Georgia (70 grade)
This one was very close and it could be a coin flip between Condon and Florida slugger Jac Caglianone. But Condon did edge Caglianone in home runs this year (37 to 35) and slugged a ridiculous 1.009, leading all Division I hitters in both categories. Chase rates also helped determine the choice here, as scouts do worry about Cags’ tendency to swing (and hit, to be fair) at everything, with a 39 percent chase rate, while Condon’s was only 26 percent.
Also considered: Jac Caglianone, 1B, Florida

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Fastest runner: Kellon Lindsey, SS, Hardee HS (Fla.) (75 grade)
A former two-sport standout – he was his high school’s quarterback for three years – Lindsey’s athleticism stands out on both sides of the ball. He posts 80-grade run times and recorded the fastest 30-yard sprint at the MLB Draft Combine, clocking in at 3.538 seconds.
Also considered: Austin Overn, OF, USC

Strongest arm: Braden Montgomery, OF, Texas A&M (70 grade)
This could be another toss-up as we have three players with 70-grade arms. Montgomery gets the nod for having a longer track record and the fact that as a pitcher, he was cranking fastballs up to 96 mph in college against top competition (Konnor Griffin has been up into the same range velocity-wise off the mound).
Also considered: Konnor Griffin, SS/OF, Jackson Prep (Miss.); Cade Arrambide, C, Tomball HS (Tex.)

Best defender: Vance Honeycutt, OF, North Carolina (70 grade)
There might be questions about his hit tool, but there are none about how his speed and instincts will play in center field. He’s going to play center for a long time with Gold Glove potential, and for some teams the higher floor that his defense brings might help them roll the dice on his strikeout rate in the first round.
Also considered: Austin Overn, OF, USC

Best fastball: Brody Brecht, RHP, Iowa (70 grade)
Not only can he touch triple digits with his heater, topping out at around 101 mph and averaging over 96 mph with the pitch, it has explosive running action and excellent shape to it. The only thing that holds it back is his command of the pitch, but that improved at the end of his season at Iowa.
Also considered: Jac Caglianone, LHP, Florida; Greysen Carter, RHP, Vanderbilt; Hunter Cranton, RHP, Kansas

Best curveball: William Schmidt, RHP, Catholic HS (La.) (70 grade)
This one was a runaway. Schmidt’s curve is the best breaking ball, or secondary offering, of any pitcher in the entire class, high school or college. He’ll get rpm readings in the 3,000 range and it’s a low-80s hammer that can fool umpires and hitters alike.
Also considered: Jakob Wright, LHP, Cal Poly

Best slider: Chase Burns, RHP, Wake Forest (70 grade)
There are some pretty good sliders in this class, and Brecht deserves a hat tip (and his slider may have been a bit less effective because Iowa made him throw it too much), but Burns’ breaking ball was virtually impossible to hit. Not only did he throw it for a strike 70 percent of the time this year, he got an absurd 64 percent miss rate and 46 percent chase rate on the upper-80s offering.
Also considered: Brody Brecht, RHP, Iowa; Tyson Neighbors, RHP, Kansas State

Best changeup: A.J. Causey, RHP, Tennessee (60 grade)
It might be a little tough to differentiate among the several 60-grade changeups on the top 250, but Causey’s offspeed offering plays up even more because his sidearm delivery adds deception. He commands it well (67 percent strike percentage), misses a ton of bats with it (53 percent miss rate) and gets hitters to chase it frequently (41 percent).
Also considered: Bryce Cunningham, RHP, Vanderbilt; Mason Molina, LHP, Arkansas; Ryan Prager, LHP, Texas A&M; Kyle Robinson, RHP, Texas Tech; Jackson Wentworth, RHP, Kansas State

Best control: Ryan Johnson, RHP, Dallas Baptist (65 grade)
In some ways, Johnson throws a ton of strikes despite his delivery, mechanics that include an abbreviated windup and side step to go along with a slingy arm slot and a good amount of effort. He threw strikes 70 percent of the time in 2024 and walked just 1.2 per nine, bringing down his career rate at Dallas Baptist to 2.1 BB/9.
Also considered: Ryan Prager, LHP, Texas A&M