2018 California Collegiate League Top Prospects
Postseason Recap: Led by dynamic corner infielders Jordan McFarland and Brandon Lewis—both top league prospects—the Conejo Oaks won their first California Collegiate League title in their 13th year as a program. The Oaks defeated the Orange County Riptide in the title game, 6-2. McFarland posted four hits, and Lewis hit a two-run homer to pace the offense.
1. Jackson Wolf, LHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., West Virginia)
At 6-foot-7, Wolf looks the part of a dominating lefty. He comes at hitters from a sidearm to three-quarters arm slot that makes him hard to pick up. Wolf throws his fastball 90-93 mph with lots of run and sink. He has plenty of projectable velocity as he starts to fill out his frame. Wolf is developing a changeup, but he currently pairs his fastball with a slider (76-78 mph) that has sharp bite and depth.
2. Garrett Crochet, LHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., Tennessee)
Crochet was a 34th round pick by the Brewers in 2017 but decided to stick to his commitment to the Vols. The 6-foot-5 lefty got plenty of work at Tennessee this spring; however, an injury ended his summer early. Crochet throws a fastball (88-93 mph) and a power slider, which generates a lot of swing and miss. He is very athletic and has some room to grow into his body to add velocity.
3. Hunter Breault, RHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So.,Oregon)
At 6-foot-2, 200 pounds Breault is already a big, strong righthander. He worked mostly out of the bullpen as a freshman at Oregon and this summer for the Foresters, but he could become a starter down the line. Breault generates a lot of swing and miss with a fastball that sits at 92 mph and ranges from 90-95 mph. He throws a slider at 76-78 mph and is currently developing a changeup.
4. Caleb Sloan, RHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., Texas Christian)
BA ranked Sloan a Top 200 draft prospect coming out of a high school last season. Sloan is a solid 6-foot-3 righty with a repeatable motion. His fastball sits 90-94 mph, and he can pump it up a little higher. Sloan’s high three-quarters delivery gives him good arm-side run and sink on his fastball and a sharp downward bite on his slider. His changeup is also an average offering, giving him a good three-pitch mix, though everything works off the fastball.
5. Michael Hobbs, RHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., St. Mary’s)
Hobbs has an explosive delivery that makes him appear destined to be a reliever. A powerfully built righty, the 6-foot-2 Hobbs works from 90-95 mph with a fastball that gets a ton of run. Hobbs throws a slider from 78-83 and has a mid-80s cutter to get lefties out. Hobbs has some deception in his delivery that makes his stuff play up.
6. Brandon Lewis, 3B, Conejo Oaks (Jr. UC Irvine)
After raking for two years at Los Angeles Pierce JC, Lewis is set to transfer to UC Irvine in the fall. He had the chance to show himself against some Division I competition this summer and impressed. Lewis is an athletic third baseman with good range, but his arm strength makes him an average defender. Lewis does not have a lot of swing and miss at the plate and barrels the ball well. The righthanded hitter is an attractive prospect because he hits for both power and average, leading the CCL in both categories this summer. He also has some speed as a 6.7-second 60-yard runner.
7. Chase Ellig, C, Santa Barbara Foresters (r-Jr.,West Virginia)
Illig didn’t have a very productive year at the plate for the Mountaineers but took the CCL by storm this summer. A switch-hitting catcher, Illig has slightly above-average to above-average power, which comes mostly from the left side. Illig is very athletic behind the dish and runs pretty well for a catcher (6.9-second 60). Illig blocks well, calls an OK game and has a pro-level arm. If he can continue to hit at West Virginia next year, he’ll be a very interesting draft prospect.
8. Elliott Anderson, LHP, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., Auburn)
Anderson worked out of the bullpen for the Tigers’ loaded pitching staff this spring and was part of another talented staff with the Foresters. Though not quite the power pitcher as some of his teammates, Anderson worked around 89-91 mph with his fastball this summer. He has terrific command of the pitch, which allows him to control both sides of the plate. Anderson uses his slider to generate a lot of swing and misses.
9. Jordan McFarland, 1B, Conejo Oaks (Jr., Arkansas)
Even after a strong freshman campaign for the Razorbacks, McFarland found a way to improve his offensive numbers this season. He is an interesting prospect at first base because, while he flashes above average power in batting practice, he has yet to show it consistently in games. McFarland is not a lumbering first baseman, but he did struggle in the field for Arkansas this season. He has also played outfield, and it’s possible his bat plays better out there if the power numbers don’t come.
10. Kamron Fields, RHP/OF, Santa Barbara Foresters (So., Texas)
Fields is a terrific athlete and a two-way player for the Longhorns. He covers a lot of ground in centerfield and came into school as a more heralded position player, but his inability to hit makes it look like his future is on the mound. Fields is very raw and inexperienced on the mound. He has plus arm speed and an explosive delivery. The righty’s fastball sits around 92-93 mph and reached as high as 95 mph this summer. He also throws a slider around 82-84 mph. Fields posted tremendous numbers for Texas out of the bullpen this past season and has plenty of room to grow as he cuts down his walks and gains more command of his pitch.