Every year there are a few guys that have strong college commitments. Last year, I posted a list of 29 players that I thought could be tough signs. 19 ended up on campus. Alford signed but didn't give up football, so I was kind of right there as well. I don't have as good of a feel with some this year so I've expanded the list. Listed is the percentage that I expect them to be on campus next year.
Karsten Whitson, P, Florida 98%
After shoulder surgery, it is likely Whitson returns to Florida for another chance to show his talent.
Austin Wilson, OF, Stanford 5%
This is a little outside the box. Wilson was out much of the year with an injury. He didn't get the chance to show if he could hit for power as well as average. If he doesn't get picked in the top 20, he won't get $2 million or more and that could mean he rolls the dice again. Pure speculation, but the crop of college bats may be as bad or worse next season.
Mark Appel, P, Stanford 0%
Hear me out here. I DO think he will sign. The question is when and how. There is a question about how much leverage Appel has. I'd be scared to take him because he has too much leverage. Whatever team takes him will rely on him for their entire draft. He has no deadline to sign while everyone else that they take will, other than college seniors. That means you can't go over slot with any other picks, because you don't know where your budget is.
If he doesn't sign, you don't get that money in your budget and you are stuck. It wouldn't surprise me to see him not sign by the signing deadline of July 12th to make sure he gets the most he can. On the other hand, if the Astros draft him, offer him $1 million under slot and he signs in a week based on a handshake that he'll be in the majors next spring, that wouldn't surprise me either.
Prep Players with their commitment
Jordan Sheffield, P, Vanderbilt 98%
Sheffield had Tommy John surgery and isn't likely to command a high pick. With slotting, overplaying late isn't as strong of an option but could still happen. I expect to see him pitching for Vandy.
Chris Oakley, P, North Carolina 90%
Oakley has a load of potential but is a long ways off. I expect him to hone his game or fall off at N.C. similar to what por teams did with Taylore Cherry
Connor Jones, P, Virginia 80%
Virginia always gets good arms. Jones could be the next in a long line.
Alec Hansen, P, Oklahoma 80%
Hansen is a guy who I could see improving similar to fellow Colorado native Kevin Gausman in college. Oklahoma will have two spots in their weekend rotation open.
Christian Arroyo, SS, Florida 80%
Arroyo really screams college player to me. He doesn't flash big tools but is a solid player.
Kramer Robertson, SS, Louisiana State 70%
Robertson's family values education and he has a good shot at improving at LSU.
Ryder Jones, 3B, Stanford 70%
Commitments to Stanford are often hard to sign players away from. Jones seems the most likely to make it to Stanford this year. He could be a draft eligible sophomore as well.
Mark Ecker, P, Texas A&M 70%
Ecker really seems like an Aggie to me. More gut than anything.
Dominic Taccolini, P, Arkansas 70%
Taccolini could be a solid two way player at Arkansas. He could step in at the back of the pen immediately.
Kevin Trader, P, Chipola (Fla.) JC 65%
Could go to Chipola and dominate instead of playing in a cold weather area like Maryland. He would be eligbile again next season. He reminds me a bit of Marcus Stroman.
Sean Brady, P, Florida 65%
Florida always has a surplus of arms. Brady could join the next class. It all depends on how highly he gets drafted.
Chris Rivera, SS, Cal State Fullerton 60%
Rivera could be a Titan and improve his bat at the college level while showing his versatility around the diamond and maybe even on the mound. This seems likely to me.
Dominic Nunez, C, UCLA 60%
Nunez is the type of player who could solidify his tools in college and parlay that into a high draft pick in three years.
A.J. Puk, P, Florida 60%
Puk is a very interesting two way player and could be next in line in Florida behind Brian Johnson and Justin Shaffer.
Jack Klein, OF, Stanford 60%
Klein is another likely candidate to end up at Stanford. His age could allow him to be a draft eligible sophomore as well.
Stephen Gonsalves, P, San Diego 60%
Gonsalves hasn't shown his potential this year and could step in immediately and make an impact at San Diego. He will also be a draft eligible sophomore, I believe.
Gosuke Katoh, 2B, UCLA 60%
Katoh is also the kind of guy who could improve and solidify his tools in college and go higher in three eyars.
Zach Burdi, P, Iowa 60%
Burdi's brother gained a lot of velocity and improved his draft stock considerably. That may weigh into Zach's decision.
Kyle Serrano, P, Tennessee 50%
Serrano's Dad is the new coach at Tennessee and the SEC is growing all the time. It could be a good step for the elder Serrano's coaching career if his son came aboard and helped turn around Tennessee.
Dustin Driver, P, UCLA 50%
Driver doesn't have the front of the rotation stuff to be drafted in the top half of the first round but he could prove that he is a solid mid rotation starter and make that happen after three years at UCLA.
Joe Martarano, 3B, Boise State (FB) 50%
Martarano has a football scholarship to Boise State. That's the big thing. There isn't a baseball program there. He is the most likely player to sign but play both sports.
John Sternagel, 3B, Florida 50%
Sternagel can hit. The question is defense. He could prove he is a solid all around player in college and improve his stock as well.
Logan Shore, P, Florida 50%
Shore could attend Florida if he isn't drafted as highly as he expects to be.
Kevin Franklin, 3B, Arizona State 50%
Franklin could prove his defensive ability and put up big power numbers at ASU. There would be an opening for him immediately.
Nick Longhi, 1B, Louisiana State 50%
Longhi is the type of guy who could lead a team to a championship at the college level. He is that type of guy.
Cal Quantrill, P, Stanford 50%
This is tough. The kid is a genius. His Dad was a pro pitcher. He could go either way but I think someone could overdraft him and pay him because he is a special talent in many ways.
Riley Unroe, SS, Southern California 40%
Unroe is the kind of player that may not get drafted highly because he isn't all tooled up but could show his polish in college and improve his draft position, kinda like what Alex Bregman is doing this year.
Ryan Boldt, OF, Nebraska 40%
Boldt got hurt this spring and will play minimally, if at all, prior to the draft. That means a team will have to go out on a limb to take him in a signable area. That means he may end up at Nebraska.
Zack Collins, 1B, Miami 40%
Collins has been streaky last fall and this spring. He's a good hitter and may end up getting drafted well after where his potential deserves. Due to this, he may go to Miami to prove his value, though getting AB's there could be hard unless he continues to catch.
Cord Sandberg, OF, Mississippi State 30%
Sandberg is also a solid football prospect and has said he will need a few days after he gets drafred to decide if he is going to school or not. I think he prefers baseball but I could be wrong.
Cavan Biggio, 3B, Virginia 30%
Biggio is committed to Notre Dame and his brother plays there as well. We all know he doesn't need the signing bonus money.
Clinton Hollon, P, Kentucky 30%
Hollon has a few knocks against him but could prove the doubters wrong at Kentucky, who have done well developing pitchers. He could improve his stock there.
Robert Tyler, P, Georgia 30%
Another gut feeling but he seems like a Georgia pitcher. He is very young and could come out of college in better shape come draft day.
Will Crowe, P, South Carolina 30%
The Gamecocks don't mind thick builds on their pitchers. He could be an anchor of their staff for three years.
Connor Heady, SS, Kentucky 30%
Heady would be a solid bat up the middle and could replace JT Riddle if he signs and goes to pro ball.
Kohl Stewart, P, Texas A&M 2%
Stewart is a football commit to Texas A & M and is a very good quarterback but he should get drafted high enough for it to not be an issue. His future is on the mound.
Nick Ciuffo, C, South Carolina 2%
Ciuffo commited to South Carolina as a freshman so by default his commitment is strong. There is no reason it should come into play though, as he will be drafted highly.