Top 100: The latest updates
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Updated: June 4, 2009, 6:00 PM ETBy Keith Law | Scouts Inc.
I've made a few significant changes to the Top 100 ranking -- remember, this is a ranking, not a projection of where teams will draft these players -- as well as some minor tweaks based on conversations I've had with scouts and my own re-evaluations of players as I write up their reports. • Indiana right-hander Eric Arnett moves up from No. 48 to No. 32. He had been hitting 95-96 mph all season but sat in that range in his first outing in the Big Ten tournament, continuing to show a sharp slider and hold his velocity deep into games. Lack of track record and high workloads are still a concern, but he has No. 1 starter potential. • Wil Myers slides to No. 21 while Max Stassi takes his old spot at No. 16. A scouting director raised a concern to me about Myers' body type, arguing that he's not likely to stay behind the plate because you don't see catchers with that build in the majors. Stassi had been in the top 15-20 all season until he hurt his shoulder a month ago, but is back behind the plate and throwing very well. • I made several demotions after I wrote more evaluations: LIU right-hander James Jones from 68 to 89, due to his poor results despite a good fastball and athleticism; Florida prep right-hander Michael Heller from 78 to 92, due to concerns about the violence in his delivery and so-so velocity in recent outings; and Scott Griggs from 61 to 77, because his value is tied to physical projection and improved command rather than "now" stuff. • Three new additions: Louisiana prep righty Zach Von Rosenberg, Tennessee prep righty Jordan Cooper, and Baylor right-hander Aaron Miller. Removals include Stanford right-hander Jeff Inman (poor results and decreased velocity in recent weeks), San Diego right-hander Matt Thomson (changes to his delivery have reduced his effectiveness), and Loyola Marymount first baseman Ryan Wheeler (lacks the power necessary for someone limited to first base). I don't expect to make too many major changes from here to the draft with most reports already written, but I am waiting to hear how Baylor's Kendal Volz threw this weekend before sliding him down from the No. 52 spot. Volz was very good for two years, including summer ball, but mechanical changes have cut his velocity and hurt his performance, so how much do you downgrade a pitcher who is healthy and has a good track record but who didn't look good all spring? Keith Law's Top 100, featuring scouting reports and video, is for ESPN Insiders. So is our daily MLB Draft Blog.
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2009 FIRST-YEAR PLAYER DRAFT