03/19/2008 10:00 AM ET
Draft Report: Hitting the prep ranks
High school players displaying dominance at showcases
By Jonathan Mayo / MLB.com
Leading up to the 2008 First-Year Player Draft on June 5, the Draft Report will take a weekly in-depth look at some of the most promising high school and collegiate talent that could comprise this year's Draft class.
The Draft Report is back with a decided prep feel.
The last few weeks had been a bit college heavy with the start of the NCAA season and all. We're not ignoring the universities this week -- there are two from those ranks for your perusal -- but the other nine are all from the younger set.
And they run the gamut, with three pitchers, two shortstops, a pair of toolsy outfielders (one of whom currently plays shortstop), a Canadian catcher and a power-hitting first baseman. The Draft Report isn't limiting itself geographically, either, hopping around from Florida to Georgia, California to Michigan, with a stop north of the border (OK, he was playing in Arizona, but play along) and one in the South (Alabama, to be precise).
Jack Armstrong, RHP
Jupiter HS, Jupiter, Fla.
Still getting into game shape following his basketball season, Armstrong threw 40 pitches in a recent outing against Palm Beach Gardens High School, but it was a starting point for what should be a highly scrutinized season. Complete Report.
Video: Jack Armstrong
Tim Beckham, SS
Griffin HS, Griffin, Ga.
One of the more exciting players in the Draft class, Beckham has five-tool potential and the ability to stay at his premium position at the next level. And no, he's not related to Gordon Beckham, the University of Georgia shortstop we profiled recently. Complete Report.
Video: Tim Beckham
Isaac Galloway, OF
Los Osos HS, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
Yet another toolsy high school outfielder from Southern Cali, Galloway has a little more "now" skills than his SoCal counterparts, Aaron Hicks and Anthony Gose. Complete Report.
Video: Isaac Galloway
Rolando Gomez, SS
Flanagan HS, Pembroke Pines, Fla.
Gomez's skills were on display at the LaGrange Invitational in Georgia, where he showed some good overall skills and an advanced understanding of how to play the game. Complete Report.
Video: Rolando Gomez
D.J. Hicks, 1B
Lake Brantley HS, Altamonte Springs, Fla.
There are several elite first basemen to choose from, both in the high school and college ranks. Hicks might be a tick below them, but his power is definitely getting noticed. Complete Report.
Video: D.J. Hicks
Destin Hood, SS/OF
St. Paul's Academy, Mobile, Ala.
A two-sport star who has signed with the University of Alabama to be a wide receiver -- and play baseball -- Hood's athleticism and raw tools will surely interest many organizations. Whether they can woo him from his college commitment remains to be seen. Complete Report.
Video: Destin Hood
Brett Lawrie, C/3B
Brookswood SS, Langley B.C.
It can be difficult to see Canadian talent at times, but Lawrie was in Arizona with the Langley Blaze to participate in the Pima Wood Bat tournament. He showed off a strong bat and some catching skills in a game against the New Mexico Military Institute. Complete Report.
Video: Brett Lawrie
Kyle Lobstein, LHP
Coconino HS, Flagstaff, Ariz.
Even though he's just getting started with his baseball season -- basketball season accounts for his late start -- Lobstein still fired six one-hit innings, allowing one run and striking out 10 in a recent outing against Glendale High School in Arizona. Complete Report.
Video: Kyle Lobstein
Ethan Martin, RHP
Stephens County HS, Toccoa, Ga.
Many scouts went to the Stephens County vs. American Heritage game to see how American Heritage's hitter -- Eric Hosmer, most notably -- did against a hard thrower (Martin). They left as excited about the young pitcher as they have been about any pitcher in some time. Martin, if this one start is any indication, has made a tremendous leap forward and will undoubtedly be closely watched from this point forward. Complete Report.
Video: Ethan Martin
Buster Posey, C
Florida State University
One of the top college backstops in the Draft class, Posey was hitting .391 and slugging .703 through his first 17 games. Complete Report.
Video: Buster Posey
Zach Putnam, RHP
University of Michigan
The Wolverines' two-way star didn't have a good start at the LeClair Classic against East Carolina -- five runs in 6 1/3 IP -- but still showed some intriguing things to scouts in attendance. Complete Report.
Video: Zach Putnam
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.