Future 50: Gerrit Cole is No. 1
The UCLA pitcher overtakes Anthony Rendon for the top spot in the rankings
One month into the Division I season, there has been a lot of movement right up to the top of the rankings, based not just on performance but on new looks at players -- some better, some worse. Conference play in college began last weekend, while cold-weather high schools all start next week, so by the next update we should have everyone playing and the best college players facing good competition on a regular basis.
As always, this is a ranking, not a prediction of where players will be drafted. It's way, way too early to make any sort of prediction, as teams aren't close to narrowing their preference lists at this point.
Analysis: Cole came out of the chute with a vastly improved changeup but took a week or two to build up to his normal velocity. At this point, he's seen as the top player in the draft, not just by me but by the majority of scouts and executives with whom I've spoken. That may change, but if Cole keeps throwing as he has been the last few outings he'll make it very hard for any team to pass on him. Previous Ranking: 3
Analysis: Edgerton Gardner High School's season starts on Monday. Previous Ranking: 4
Analysis: I don't believe Hultzen will be the fourth-best player in this draft when we get to June, but right now he's performing and showing a grade-better fastball, while others expected to go in this range have stumbled. Previous Ranking: 19
Analysis: Had one off week in front of a lot of scouts but has been topping out at 96-97 his last few times out. Previous Ranking: 5
To see the full top 50 rankings from Keith Law, you must be an ESPN Insider.
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2011 MLB Draft Content
The Pittsburgh Pirates kicked off the 2011 MLB Draft by taking UCLA SP Gerrit Cole. Insider's Keith Law leads the coverage from Cole through the first round and beyond.
2011 MLB Draft6/7: Churchill: Analyzing Rounds 6-25
6/7: Law's Best of Day 2: American | National
6/7: Churchill: Analyzing Rounds 3-5
6/7: Churchill: Highlights of the second round
6/6: Law: Best and worst of Day 1
6/6: Churchill: Sandwich round analysis
6/6: Law/Churchill: First round analysis
MLB Draft Essentials6/6: Final mock: Nats add more star power
6/4: Law's Top 100: Setting up the draft
6/3: Mock 3.0: Starling on the rise
6/3: Churchill: Best tools in the draft
6/1: Sackmann: Statistical red flags
5/30: Mock 2.0: Gerrit Cole to Pirates
5/28: Churchill: 2010 NL Draft in review
5/27: Churchill: 2010 AL Draft in review
5/17: First full mock: Hultzen goes No. 1
5/12: Top 100: Movement in top 10
5/12: Cole goes first in modified mock draft
4/29: Future Fifty 3.0: Purke falls out
3/22: Future Fifty 2.0: Cole takes the top spot
3/22: Law: The Draft is not a crapshoot
2/17: Future Fifty: Rendon tops season's first ranking
2/17: Draft Order: How the teams will pick in the first and supplemental round