Prep Baseball Report

MLB Draft Watch: 2022 Helium Potential

Shooter Hunt
Vice President, Scouting

For the first time in its history, the MLB Draft is taking place in July. Not only did that lengthen the evaluation period for currently eligible players, it also created some crossover with the summer circuit getting underway before the previous cycle is complete. It will be interesting to see how major league clubs handle finishing up one class while starting on another. As we head into another summer season, an important time for rising seniors with their sights set on the draft, these are some of the big names you need to know about--whether you're a scout or simply a fan of the MLB Draft.

***UPDATED TOP 500***

Big 4 Breakdown

Hayden Murphy RHP / SS / Tiftarea Academy, GA / 2022

The 6-foot-3, 185-pound right-hander looked closer to 6-foot-4, 195-pounds in his first outing of the summer at the National Program Invitational, and made a loud announcement of his presence in the upcoming 2022 draft class. Working more linear down the mound than in previous looks, the loose whip of the arm stroke is maintained, and a fastball that explodes through the zone with considerable ride and run at 91-94 is thrown to four quadrants with intent. There is room to continue filling out a long-limbed athletic frame (he doubles as a potential two-way prospect for Auburn), and the velocity will almost assuredly tick up over the next year and beyond. But beyond the pure arm strength and athleticism, Murphy’s full arsenal promises upside as a frontline starter. Tunneling a tight slider in the mid-80s, he rips the pitch off with swing-and-miss intention, and it flashes plus when at its best. Intensifying his path as a starter, the changeup profiles best off the fastball with similar sinking action, and is thrown for strikes. Even more, Murphy’s mound presence elicits a killer-instinct, and his competitive nature should only help drive his stock higher over the next year. 

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