2020 MLB Draft: Others To Know

Nathan Rode and PBR Staff

The 2020 MLB Draft is less than a week away. If you haven’t already, get to know the top prospects by reading reports on every player on the PBR Draft Board. There are 200 players on that page and the draft is just 160 picks. However, it’s inevitable that many players, especially high schoolers, will go undrafted because of signability. That will open the door for some outside the top 200 to get popped. Below, you will find reports and video on several you should know about. Beyond that, be sure to check out our high school and college rankings and click on any player to view their profiles, which are full of information.

Brett Auerbach, UT, Alabama
Standing 5-foot-9, 185 pounds, Auerbach is an instinctive ball player with versatility to add value around the diamond. He shows versatility now with the ability to play catcher, third base and the outfield, but left field likely is his best position in the long term. As a catcher, his pop times range from 1.90-2.00 with fringe arm strength and average accuracy to the bag. From the outfield, his throwing accuracy is above average and the arm strength was similar. He’s a below average runner down the line, but gets good reads and jumps on the basepaths and relies on momentum leadoffs to steal. Auerbach also shows below-average bat speed and raw power.

Darren Baker, 2B, California
The son of Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker, the Cal second baseman is respected and valued for his own talents and skills. He's a left-handed hitting middle infielder who profiles as a contact hitter and high-level defender at second. He's an outstanding baserunner and his game instincts show up offensively and defensively. Given the talent, tools, make-up, instincts and bloodlines—as well as scouts having a long personal history with the Baker family—he's a good bet to sneak into this draft.


Bradlee Beesley, OF, Cal Poly
After going undrafted last June, Beesley improved his standing with a .280/.371/.432 slash line over the summer in the Cape. He has plus speed and plays solid defense in the outfield with a near average arm. There’s raw pop in his bat with an aggressive swing, but to this point it hasn’t translated into games with just four career home runs entering the 2020 season. With good bat speed, he’s able to turn on velocity, yet can get out front against offspeed offerings.

Rio Britton, LHP, Capital Christian HS, CA
After wowing area scouts at the 2019 NorCal ProCase, Britton went on to make the Area Code team and was a top priority for Northern California scouts going into the spring. He was slow out of the gate with some nagging shoulder issues, but he got right and has been active throwing pens this spring and videos on social media show him up to 93 (on a Pocket Radar) and snapping off a power curveball. At a strong, but uber-athletic, 6-foot-2, 200-pounds and with swing-and miss-stuff, there is still a shot that a club attempts to bring him into their org as opposed to letting him get to Oregon.


Blake Brown, RHP, UNC Asheville
Brown is a high-risk, high-reward power righty. His fastball can sit in triple digits, especially in short stints out of the pen. He allowed more hits than innings pitched in his first three years with UNC Asheville, with a high of 37.1 pitched as a sophomore, while his strikeout rate hovered around one per inning. As a senior, Brown worked 19 innings in the shortened season, allowing just nine hits. He walked 18 and struck out 26. The risk is the command and consistent ability to miss bats. His control could tick up as he matures and develops more feel for his arm speed. The reward is a top-end fastball and hard downer breaking ball. The movement patterns and induced vertical breaks of his two pitches complement each other if he can command the fastball up in the zone.

Owen Caissie, ON, Notre Dame SS, ON
Caissie is long, physical and athletic at 6-foot-4, 203 pounds and projects to have above-average strength and average athleticism. He’s an above-average runner with a future plus arm, profiling for right field. He’s still developing defensively, as his first-step quickness and routes are behind, but he has the makings to be an average defender. A left-handed hitter, he has a selective approach. The swing works in sync and he generates bat speed with minimal effort, working on plane with extension. He makes adjustments with a good understanding of the strike zone. He lacks reps against higher-level pitching, but his work ethic will allow him to catch up. He can be pull heavy at times, but doesn’t need to force it, possessing the power to leave the yard to all fields.


David Calabrese, ON, St. Elizabeth HS, ON
Calabrese stands at 5-foot-11, 160 pounds and is a good athlete with looseness and twitch. He can impact the game with his speed as a plus runner, stealing bags and beating out infield hits. He can handle the bat, spraying the ball line to line. He has present bat speed and gets the head out front easily with no restrictions. He has shown the ability to handle velo and has some sneaky pop to his pull side. He’s raw in the outfield, but his speed and athleticism will allow him to develop into an above-average defender with a chance to stick in center field. The arm strength projects to be average with better accuracy.


Johnny Cuevas, RHP, JC of Southern Nevada
Cuevas is a converted shortstop who stands at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds and has settled into his new role on the mound, showing tremendous upside with velocity jumps coming through as he continues to clean up his mechanics. Last year, as a freshman, he sat 89-92 with flashes of 94, relying mostly on his athleticism throughout his delivery. Last fall and through the shortened spring, he confidently displayed a more polished, consistent delivery with his fastball sitting 92-93 with cut, bumping 94 when he needed to. His go-to secondary pitch is his breaking ball with 11/5 shape that he can locate in the zone at 80-83. His straight changeup is continuing to show signs of life with fade and sink.

Max Carlson, RHP, Burnsville HS, MN
Carlson has a lean frame at 6-foot-1, 180 pounds. He pitches with a clean arm action, easy effort, extension and finish to the plate. His fastball consistently sits 89-91 with occasional life and solid command to both sides of the plate. He offers good feel and command of his secondary stuff, showing a curveball with tight spin and depth, complemented by a hard, late-sinking changeup that is thrown in any count. He is the younger brother of Sam Carlson, the second-round pick of the Seattle Mariners in 2017.

Dylan Dodd, LHP, Southeast Missouri State
Dodd has a strong frame at 6-foot-2, 215 pounds. In the last year, he has shifted from being a two-way player to strictly a pitcher, which has allowed his fastball to jump from 86-90 to 90-94. This fall, he scrapped his curveball and added a slider that better plays off of his heater. The changeup has also developed in a quality secondary offering. His offseason improvements were evident this spring, as the southpaw pitched 26.2 innings and struck out six while allowing just seven walks.

Sammy Infante, SS, Monsignor Pace HS, FL
A 6-foot-1, 185-pound Miami recruit, Infante shows gap-to-gap power at the plate with a solid lower half and quick hands to the ball. The swing is uphill and he’s able to get extended, showing more power to his pull side. Defensively, he has soft hands with quick transfers and a strong, accurate arm.

Justin Fall, LHP, Arizona State
Drafted in the 34th round last June by the Royals out of Brookdale CC (NJ), Fall took Tempe by storm with his arrival on campus in the fall. He’s a 6-foot-6, 240-pound, three-pitch lefty and on opening night against Villanova he sat 90-93, touching an occasional 94 with his fastball. His slider played well at 81-84 mph, largely due to very little dispersion (very consistent release point) with his fastball. He also mixed in a 81-84 mph changeup. He finished the 2020 season 1-0 with a 5.68 ERA in 19 innings with 16 hits and 13 walks allowed while striking out 17.

Hunter Furtado, LHP, King’s Academy, FL
Furtado has made some major jumps in velocity over the last year, going from low to mid 80s, to an average fastball velocity of 88 mph, and now up to 91 mph. He has a very long, lean, lanky frame that is extremely projectable. He pitches from a high slot and has low spin to his fastball, average 1888 in a recent bullpen. The breaking ball should eventually develop into a solid-average slider while the changeup has above-average potential.


Nick Gorby, LHP, Vero Beach HS, FL
Gorby has a strong frame at 6-foot-1, 230 pounds. He throws from a 3/4 slot with an effortless arm action while keeping his delivery in line with the plate. His fastball can sit 89-92 and he shows two breaking balls—a 73-76 curveball and 79-81 slider—that flash swing-and-miss break. He is committed to Texas Tech.

Shawn Guilliams, RHP, Villages Charter School, FL
Guilliams stood out for his ability to spin a breaking ball at the Florida Diamond Club Showcase last fall, then showed an uptick in velocity at the Florida Preseason All-State Showcase and repeated that at the Super 60. The North Florida recruit has a slender, projectable frame at 6-foot-2, 175 pounds. He hasn’t lost command of the fastball, and seems destined for more velo down the road thanks to his loose, quick arm and easy delivery. He sat 90-92 with high spin, averaging 2401 rpm. He also spins a sharp curveball at 78-79 with depth and shows feel for a changeup at 85-87.


Jonathan Hughes, RHP, Georgia Tech
Drafted in the second round (68th overall) by Baltimore out of high school in 2015, Hughes did not sign and was a fifth-year senior for Georgia Tech this season. He has a 92-94 fastball from a high-3/4 slot with a one piece arm action. The fastball is mainly straight, but shows occasional cut when he raises it a tick. He also can spot up an average changeup at 83-84 and mix in an above-average slider at 84-86.


Colton Johnson, LHP, Illinois State
After turning down a significant bonus offer as a non-drafted free agent last year, the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Johnson returned for his senior season with the Redbirds. After a strong start, Johnson broke out in relief at Arkansas, earning a save. And, it wasn't just his three strikeout save. It was his velocity that made scouts take notice. Previously known more as an 88-92 lefty who could touch 94, Johnson ran it into the mid 90s against the Razorbacks, with his usual big-bend slurve in the upper 70s. Not too many scouts saw this performance first-hand on an early season Tuesday night, but you can be sure they have seen the video during the quarantine.

John McMillon, RHP, Texas Tech
McMillon stands at 6-foot-3, 230 pounds and works from a high slot with some effort down the mound. He sits 90-92 with average life and can spin a 12/6 curveball at 79-82. He also mixes in an 80-82 changeup. He has below average pitchability, but plus arm strength. The fastball is straight and plays better up in the zone.

Matt Mervis, 1B, Duke
At 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, Mervis can unleash the bat head from the left side in a hurry. At times, he recognizes pitches later, but is able to limit his swing-and-miss rate and put the ball in play. He also can pitch in the low 90s as a reliever.


Mason Miller, LHP, JW Mitchell HS, FL
A Florida Gulf Coast recruit, Miller has an athletic and strong frame at 6-foot-2, 200 pounds. He throws from a 3/4 slot with looseness. His fastball ranges from 88-92, touching 93. He also has a 74-75 curveball with depth.


Jacob Misirowski, RHP, Grain Valley HS, MO, MO
Misiorowski has a long, slender and projectable frame at 6-foot-6, 200 pounds. He works down the mound well, getting excellent extension out front at 6-foot-7 to 7 feet. From a 3/4 slot, he’s long and loose with a present fastball ranging from 90-93 with spin rates in the 2400-2500s. He can also spin two different breaking balls. When separated, his 79-81 curveball is a tight spinner with late action and a future plus pitch. His slider comes in at 82-84 with greater lateral movement. Spin rates for both pitches are in the 2500s. He’s also able to mix in an 82 mph changeup with high spin at 2400. It remains a work-in-progress.


Jacob Palisch, LHP, Stanford
At 6-foot-4, 190-pounds, Palisch passes the eye test. After an all-Pac 12 honorable mention last season and his 2019 Cape Cod season, scouts were anticipating his spring, but a nagging injury to his left side kept him off the mound before the spring was canceled. He pitches at 88-90, touching 91 and has feel for an average changeup in the low 80s. He possesses both a 75-79 curveball and 81-83 slider that were tighter on the Cape than the spring last year. He throws strikes and has projection remaining in the frame.


Robert Ready, RHP, St. Augustine Prep HS, NJ
Ready has a physical, broad-shouldered frame at 6-foot-3, 235 pounds and was a standout performer at the Super 60. His fastball has late life at 92-93 and has feel for a changeup and slider. The arm is clean and explosive through a high-3/4 slot.


Christian Rodriguez, RHP, Orange Lutheran HS, CA
Rodriguez was trending upward when the season was cut short and has continued to show big stuff in bullpens. The Cal State Fullerton recruit has a long, projectable frame and has been working 93-95 with spin rates up to 3000 on the fastball. The curveball has improved too, working 74-78 with elite spin rates as well.


Cam Shepherd, SS, Georgia
Shepher is a steady and sure-handed defensive player who is not flashy, but makes all of the routine plays. He shows good body control, an above average arm and the ability to throw from all angles. He has good footwork and strong fundamentals in all parts of his defensive game. Offensively, he has a smooth, easy stride and load with little movement, which allows him to stay balanced and easily repeat his mechanics. He connects his back elbow and hip very well, gets the barrel flat and on plane and has great extension through the ball. He stays behind the baseball very well and allows his hands to extend away from his body at contact. Overall, he has a good feel to hit with strong plate discipline, good hand-eye coordination and he adjusts well to the pitch type. 


Will Simoneit, C/3B, Wake Forest
A graduate transfer from Cornell, Simoneit made big impressions early in his Demon Deacon career. With a country-strong 6-foot-4, 235-pound build and pop in his bat he fit perfectly into the physical bodied and power-packed Wake Forest lineup. His swing has a slow trigger with slider bat speed and he needs to get it going early, but he has plenty of bat strength to make it work. Defensively, he has an above-average arm with good body control and sure hands. He shows the ability to play third base and catcher (2.06 in game pop to the bag).


Chase Silseth, RHP, JC of Southern Nevada
The 6-foot, 205-pound Sisleth has a power arm with a potential plus three-pitch mix. His fastball cruises at 92-94 and he can run it up to 97 when needed. He has a wipeout breaking ball that works well off the fastball, sitting 81-83. The changeup continues to improve and flashes heavy arm-side run with late sink at 82-84. Silseth uses a polished, rhythmic delivery with some effort, especially when he reaches back for more on the fastball.

Austin Smith, RHP, Southwestern University
Smith has a lean 6-foot-4 frame that will continue to add strength and size as he physically matures. He rolled out and definitely proved he isn't your average Division III arm. He was able to show off his electric fastball in a recent bullpen session, as well as flash potentially plus secondary offerings as they continue to refine and he shows to ability to repeat them consistently. There is still some effort in the delivery, which hampers his ability to repeat each pitch, but he explodes off the rubber, getting down the mound with ease, showing his natural athleticism throughout. The fastball topped out at 98.8 and showed high-end metrics to match the velocity. The average was 96.9 and he is able to couple the velocity with a movement profile that helps separate himself from other fireballers across the country. He averaged an induced vertical break of 19.3 inches, which puts him in the top 5 percent of MLB right now. You will see higher induced vertical breaks with pitchers who throw with a lower velocity, but when you have that velocity and that much induced vertical break, it’s a special fastball. Each of his secondary offerings flashed promise and swing-and-miss potential, but he struggled at times to repeat them consistently. All of that is quite understandable knowing that he is still relatively new on the mound. He began pitching just a couple years ago when he stepped foot on campus at Southwestern. His best split finger of the day looked to change directions a couple times on the way to the plate and dove straight down late. It was 84.7 mph and had 0.2 inches of induced vertical break, 8.3 horizontal and a spin rate of 1111. The breaking balls were more consistent than the split finger and both showed promise. The slider came in at an average velocity of 81.2 mph with an average spin rate of 2493 RPM and showed late glove side action. The curveball seemed to be a pitch he used to change speeds and really slow a batter down, but it was thrown the least amount on the day. The average velocity was 73.8 mph with an average spin rate of 2513 RPM.


Luke Smith, RHP, Louisville
Smith is athletic with effort to his delivery and pitches in the low 90s with cut and occasional sink. His breaking ball sits 79-81 with high spin near 2800. He can also back off it a little to 73-75. He has developed a third pitch in an above-average to plus changeup changeup at 82-86. His delivery is strong mechanically with good lower leg block and glove tuck. He does land on his toes, which can block his hips and cut off his direction to the plate, which is likely why he sets up on the first base side of the rubber. An adjustment to landing more flat footed or toward his heel could allow him to move to the third base side where he could still get to his glove side with his fastball while allowing for more plate coverage of his breaking ball.

Jordan Thompson, SS, Helix HS, CA
Thompson possesses an elite arm that he shows off on the mound with a low 90s fastball and at short-stop where he can make any throw. The LSU commit has speed to his game, as he runs a sub-7.0 60-yard dash and shows quick feet and fluid lateral movement. Offensively, there is pop in his bat from his twitchy frame and he has the bat speed and strength to progress quickly at the next level.


Sterlin Thompson, SS, North Marion HS, FL
Thompson has an athletic frame with room for growth. Defensively, he features a loose arm action and gets good carry to his throws. The actions are solid and he makes good exchanges. Hitting from the left side, he stays balanced at the plate, using a leg kick to get his strong lower half involved. He stays through the zone well and shows a fast bat with barrel awareness and gap power potential. He is committed to Stetson.


Austin Todd, OF, Texas
Todd is a competitive, high upside outfielder with average or better tools across the board. At 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, he has quick twitch athleticism and very good bat speed. He sets up with an open stance and strides to even. He doesn't take much of a positive move, therefore doesn't really get off his backside. He takes a big swing and stands up in it, which is basically all arms and shoulders. He may need to lengthen his stride a bit to get more out of his lower half, also helping him get off his backside and getting to his raw power in the game. He possesses very good hand-eye coordination. He's an above average runner underway, however it doesn't play down the line due to his big swing. Todd also has the potential to be an above average defender on either corner with an average arm, though it plays less with long footwork and release.

Brian Van Belle, RHP, Miami
A redshirt senior, Van Belle can dominate lineups with an above-average slider at 79-82 and plus changeup at 83-85. Both work off of his 89-92 fastball with some late action. He’s ultra competitive and has feel for three average or better pitches.

Brandon Young, RHP, Louisiana-Lafayette
Young is imposing as he looks down on hitters from this 6-foot-6, 210-pound frame. He has simple mechanics, making it possible for him to repeat with his long frame. He has a short, compact arm action with a clean and continuous arm circle that comes through a high-3/4 slot. He has a low- to mid-90s fastball, getting some arm-side action on a two-seamer while the four-seamer plays better at the top of the zone. He’s always had feel for an average changeup with solid command, but he made a big step when he added a slider this spring. It’s average at this point, but has good spin and solid depth, working down and away from right-handed hitters. Young is an intense competitor and profiles as a No. 3 starter, but would fit nicely in a bullpen role where his stuff would play up in short stints.

Ben Wiegman, RHP, Carmel Catholic HS, IL
A Louisville recruit, Wiegman stands at 6-foot-4, 230 pounds with broad shoulders. He sat mostly 93-94 at the Super 60 and some workout video during quarantine showed bigger velocity. He continues to make strides with his breaking ball, which is thrown with aggression at 83-85 with late, hard bite.


Calvin Zeigler, RHP, St. Marys HS, ON
Ziegler, a Connecticut recruit, had a strong showing the Canadian Junior National Team this spring, sitting 90-92 and touching 94. He was also able to show feel for the curveball and threw more changeups than previous outings. The arm works and he has present strength mixed with athleticism. Recent video showed him up to 97 in a bullpen.

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