Updated 2018 Overall Rankings Released
December 10, 2015
By Sean Duncan
From big velocity to big power to big bodies, the Class of 2018, on a whole, is advanced on several levels. So advanced, in fact, these sophomores are being recruited at an unprecedented breakneck pace. The sheer number of verbal commitments already in our recently updated 2018 overall rankings speaks volumes to the direction of college recruiting.
In the Prep Baseball Report’s updated and expanded 2018 rankings, 91 of the top 200 sophomores are verbally committed. Moreover, of the top 75 prospects, 59 have already named their schools. Louisville leads the way with eight commitments, followed by Florida (seven), Vanderbilt (seven), Miami (six) and Florida State (six).
It is important to note that the PBR overall rankings only reflect the states that we intimately cover from our boots-on-the-ground scouting staff. The updated Top 200 Class of 2018 rankings is comprised of our current 27-state coverage area, which now includes all New England states.
Over the course of three months, which has spanned state-specific showcases and the fall national circuit, our scouting staff has been hard at work. In that span, many sophomores have taken significant leaps forward, which in turn have created massive shakeups in the updated 2018 rankings.
Despite all the commitments, five of the top 10 overall prospects are still on the board, including the new No. 1 prospect, OF Elijah Cabell (Winter Park HS, FL). The athletic 6-foot-1, 180-pound Cabell exploded onto the scene this fall flashing high-level tools across the board. Cabell’s offensive abilities separate him from his peers, as he features strength in the swing and premium bat speed.
Cabell slightly edges OF/LHP Connor Scott (Plant HS, FL) – the previous No. 1 prospect – for the top spot. The highly projectable 6-foot-3, 170-pound Florida recruit starred at Plant HS as a freshman, a program that featured two first-rounders, including OF Kyle Tucker, the No. 5 overall pick whom Scott resembles. Scott is a highly athletic left-handed hitter with power potential and a strong arm. Although his future is most likely as a position player, Scott also features a lively fastball that has been up to 87 mph.
Florida prospects hold the top three spots – and five of the top 10 – with RHP Kristofer Armstrong (Benjamin HS, FL) checking in at No. 3. The 6-foot-3, 185-pound Armstrong is a high-ceiling right-hander with now-stuff, which includes an easy 88-91 mph fastball and a swing-and-miss curveball.
The 2018 class is especially deep in outfielders. In fact, five of the top 10 are outfielders. Along with Cabell and Scott, Alek Thomas (Mount Carmel HS, IL), Jarred Kelenic (Waukesha West HS, WI) and Christian Robinson (Viera HS, FL) are top-10 prospects.
Outside the top 10, the biggest risers include: OF/LHP Liam Henry (Park Hill HS, MO), RHP Michael Bacica (Windemere Prep HS, FL), SS Blaze Alexander (Bishop Verot HS, FL), RHP Gunnar Hoglund (Dayspring Christian HS, FL), 1B Grant Lavigne (Bedford HS, NH), OF Kendrick Calilao (The First Academy HS, FL), INF Brandon Howlett (George Jenkins HS, FL), RHP Austin Becker (Big Walnut HS, OH), OF Christian Franklin (Rockhurst HS, MO), and Luis Tuero (Archbishop McCarthy HS, FL), to name a few.
A look at the top 20:
|1||Elijah Cabell||FL||Winter Park||2018||OF|
|4||Alek Thomas||IL||Mount Carmel||2018||OF|
|5||Jarred Kelenic||WI||Waukesha West||2018||OF||Louisville|
|8||Landon Marceaux||LA||Destrehan||2018||RHP||Louisiana State|
|9||Ryder Green||TN||Hardin Valley Academy||2018||3B||Kentucky|
|10||Lyon Richardson||FL||Jensen Beach||2018||RHP|
|11||Justyn-Henry Malloy||NJ||St. Joseph's Regional||2018||3B||Vanderbilt|
|12||David Luethje||FL||Vero Beach||2018||RHP||Florida|
|13||Alec Sanchez||FL||Providence||2018||SS||Florida State|
|14||Liam Henry||MO||Park Hill||2018||LHP||Arkansas|
|15||Levi Kelly||FL||IMG Academy||2018||RHP||Louisiana State|
|16||John Malcom||MI||Country Day||2018||1B||Vanderbilt|
|17||Xavier Edwards||FL||Trinity Christian Academy||2018||SS||Vanderbilt|
|18||Michael Bacica||FL||Windermere Prep||2018||RHP||North Carolina|
|20||Blaze Alexander||FL||Bishop Verot||2018||SS||South Carolina|