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Draft Prospects Brett Baty, Hudson Head Both Had Seasons To Remember



With the lack of exceptional pitchers available in this year’s draft, teams could be drafting more bats than ever. And two of the high school players in this year’s BA 500 are putting up historical numbers in terms of their production at the plate.

Third baseman Brett Baty, the No. 15 player on the BA 500, and outfielder Hudson Head, the No. 128 player, are both hitting over .600 this season. More specifically, Baty is hitting .624 and Head is hitting .615.

It’s nearly impossible to quantify the variation of difficulty throughout different classes of high school baseball in each state. However, Baty and Head are both playing for Texas high schools, and Texas is generally considered one of the states with the highest level of competition for baseball, making their achievements even more impressive.

Since 2009, Javier Baez's .771 average set a new standard for batting average for a draft prospects. Here's the best high school seasons by draft prospects during the Baseball America era, which began in 1981.

Year Player Position Location AVG AB R H HR RBI
2011 Javier Baez SS Jacksonville, Fla. .771 83 46 64 22 52
2004 Billy Killian C Stanwood, Mich. .766 30 21 23 4 12
1989 Gordon Powell 3B Cincinnati, Ohio .727 44 13 32 8 26
2011 Trevor Mitsui 1B Shorewood, Wash. .712 52 39 37 13 26
2005 Andrew McCutchen OF Fort Meade, Fla. .709 55 28 39 16 42
1992 Todd Helton OF Knoxville, Tenn. .700 70 47 49 10 39
2000 Jason Belcher C/3B Walnut Ridge, Ark. .676 74 67 50 15 59
2006 Matt Sulentic OF Dallas, Texas .676 74 47 50 19 58
1997 Jayson Werth C Chatham, Ill. .671 70 52 47 11 43
2010 Kaleb Cowart INF Adel, Ga. .654 107 55 70 11 59
1988 Rico Brogna 1B Watertown, Conn. .648 37 20 24 2 23
1998 Gerald Laird C Westminster, Calif. .648 88   57 5 33
2005 Cameron Maybin OF Arden, N.C. .646 65 57 42 14 36
2000 Adrian Gonzalez 1B Chula Vista, Calif. .645 76 42 49 13 34
1984 Terry Green SS Stringtown, Okla. .640 75 42 48 8 29
2011 Dante Bichette Jr. 3B Orlando, Fla. .640 86 58 55 10 40
2010 Manny Machado 3B Hialeah Gardens, Fla. .639 86 43 55 12 56
1995 Michael Barrett SS Atlanta, Ga. .638 105 67 64 9 55
2006 Adrian Cardenas 2B Miami Lakes, Fla. .630 108 47 68 17 56
2016 Nolan Jones 3B Bensalem, Pa. .630 46 28 29 6 27
2017 Heliot Ramos OF Guaynabo, P.R. .628 43   27 9  
1996 Brent Abernathy SS Atlanta, Ga. .627 110 66 69 11 41
2009 J.R. Murphy C Bradenton, Fla. .627 102   64 11  
1999 Josh Wilson SS Pittsburgh, Pa. .625 48   30 7 24
2017 Terry Fuller 1B Griffin, Ga. .625 80   50 13  
1986 Phil Clark C Crockett, Texas .623 69 38 43 11 36
2017 Luis Campusano C Augusta, Ga. .622 90   56 6  
1984 Shawn Abner OF Mechanicsburg,Pa. .620 50 25 31 5 18
1984 Erik Pappas C Chicago, Ill. .615 39 18 24 4 19
2000 Kevin Cust C Flemington, N.J. .615 52 23 32 12 30
1991 Manny Ramirez OF New York, N.Y. .614 39 25 24 6 26
2002 B.J. Upton SS Chesapeake, Va. .614 70 51 43 10 47
1993 John Roskos C Rio Rancho, N.M. .613 62 39 38 15 42
1997 Scott Ackerman C Oregon City, Ore. .612 85 41 52 8 42
2007 Gary Brown OF/2B Walnut, Calif. .612 80 44 49 4 21
1996 John Oliver OF Lehman, Pa. .610 77 47 47 11 40
2014 J.J. Matijevic 1B North Huntingdon, Pa. .607 56 29 34 10 37
1997 Darnell McDonald OF Englewood, Colo. .606 66 37 40 10 35
1994 Terrance Long 1B Millbrook, Ala. .604 96 48 58 13 46
2012 Albert Almora OF Hialeah Gardens, Fla. .603 73 42 44 6 34
1988 Mark Lewis SS Hamilton, Ohio .600 100 62 60 14 64
1989 Brad Wilson C Hiawassee, Ga. .600 65 38 39 21 52
2015 Nick Shumpert SS Highlands Ranch, Colo. .600 55 29 33 5 14
2019_Draft_AlexTrautwig.jpg

2019 MLB Draft Mega-Analysis For All 30 Teams

Examining every class, including Day 1 picks, most exciting Day 2 and 3 selections, fast risers and philosophies.

From 1984 to 2009, only 32 other high school BA draft prospects (who ranked in the Top 100 in the 1980s or early 1990s and in the Top 200 in the mid-1990s to 2009) have hit at least .600 in a season, highlighted by big names such as Manny Ramirez and Adrian Gonzalez who hit .614 and .645, respectively.

Of those 32 prospects, 13 of them were able to accomplish this milestone in a state considered to be a hotbed for draft prospects: California, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Texas.

Andrew McCutchen is the standout of those 13 prospects, batting .709 in his senior year of high school. 

We took a look at how these high school phenoms translated to the majors, if they even made it that far.

Of those 32 prospects, 21 of them made it to the majors at some point, or about 65.6 percent. Four of those 21 players played fewer than 100 games in the majors.

Cameron Maybin, John Ryan Murphy and McCutchen are still currently active MLB players, so we did not factor them into the following statistics.

Although these high school stars were incredible hitters at a young age, those averages don’t necessarily carry over into the pros.

Of the 29 inactive players from the list of prospects, the combined batting average in the majors was just .159. If you ignore the prospects who never made it all the way to the big leagues, the average raises to .257, but one would probably expect a little more from some of the greatest high school hitters in recent history.

The inactive players who made it to the majors at some point played an average of a little over 820 games in their careers, or a bit more than five complete regular seasons.

Of the high school prospects, Ramirez played the most games in the majors with 2302, while Gary Brown played the least of everybody who made it to the majors at some point with just seven games. However, Brown was able to continue his strong hitting form from high school with a major league career batting average of .429 through those seven games.

Ramirez and Todd Helton were the only other players to hit over .300 in their major league careers. Ramirez hit .312, and Helton was slightly better at .316.

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