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MLB Draft: Potential Draft Eligible Sophomores for 2014

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Top 2012 Draft Prospect Keon Barnum (via jonathanmayoB3)

Each year, there are some sophomores who are eligible for the draft instead of having to wait until their junior year. Kevin Gausman is this seasons' biggest name. To be eligible you have to meet one of three criteria:

  • High school players, if they have graduated from high school and have not yet attended college or junior college;
  • College players, from four-year colleges who have either completed their junior or senior years or are at least 21 years old; and
  • Junior college players, regardless of how many years of school they have completed
This gives sophomores another opportunity to get drafted and in the past, it offered more negotiating power. I'm not sure that will continue going forward with the new draft slotting. It may continue forward, it will just take a team drafting them to work the system a little to fit them in their spending cap.
Here are the oldest high school graduates from this years crop and the college they are committed to.
    Jamal Martin OF RHP Florida State
    Keon Barnum 1B Miami
    Tyler Gonzales P SS Texas
    Byron Ferguson P OF Bethune-Cookman
    Curt Britt P South Carolina
    Matt Crownover P Clemson
    Hunter Melton 3B RHP Texas A&M
    Rock Rucker OF LHP Auburn
    Dalton DiNatale 3B 1B Arizona State
    Ty Buttrey P OF Arkansas
    Avery Romero 3B Florida
    Tucker Simpson P Florida
    Cal Becker P SS California
    Max Foody P Florida State
    Zak Wasilewski P OF South Carolina
    Taylore Cherry P North Carolina
    Cameron Tekker P OF Virginia
    Jordan Ebert 2B OF

    4 others that are close but will likely miss the cutoff:
    Ty Moore OF RHP UCLA
    Drew Jackson SS Stanford
    Ty Hensley P Ole Miss
    Clint Coulter C Arizona State

    These could be unique players that could be targets of teams. They kind of have the deck stacked against them as they will almost be 22 when getting drafted as juniors in 2015. Moore and Jackson could be tough signs but it could be hard for them to bypass the student athlete path.
    If I was a team, I would draft them where their skill level dictated and then pay them well in future college scholarship money, which I believe does not count against the spending cap. This ensures they get the education they earned in high school and gives them a shot at pro ball right now.