In the run up to the June 3 Major League Baseball Draft, MaxPreps looks at high school players who might be selected in the three-day proceedings.
Today, we look at the Top 5 left-handed pitchers.
Unlike the right-handed pitchers, which could have five or six players taken in the first round, the southpaws figure to be more prominent on the second day of the draft with only a few going on the first day.
Video: Chris Villamin highlights
See North Carolina ace in action via NFHS Network.
We've already dissected the right-handed pitchers
and in the coming days, we will look at catchers, infielders and outfielders in the walk up to the draft.
2018, 37 high school players were chosen on the first day of the draft,
which includes two rounds and several compensatory rounds.
MLB Draft Prospects: Top 5 left-handed pitchersHunter Barco, Bolles (Jacksonville, Fla.), 6-4, 220
He clearly has the most experience of any left-hander in the high school ranks and has been a huge factor in Bolles' success since his freshman year, when he was the MaxPreps National Freshman of the Year. A varsity member as a freshman, Barco has won 35 games in his career (35-4) with 336 strikeouts. He's hit 94 mph on his fastball and he has an above average slider and change, according to scouting reports, but he also has trouble with his command, as noted by his 22 walks in just 38 innings pitched.
Draft forecast: Barco could go in the first round, but likely toward the end.Spencer Jones, La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.), 6-7, 205
An elbow injury in March brought an early end to Jones' season, but he could still figure into the first day of the draft. There reportedly was no ligament damage, according to a report in the San Diego Union-Tribune, and he could be available this summer. It's possible that Jones could end up as an everyday player at the next level as he's a potential first base prospect. He can throw in the low 90s, but has control issues and needs to develop a third pitch.
Draft forecast: Could go in the second or third round, but the Vanderbilt commit could fall to the second day.Blake Walston, New Hanover (Wilmington, N.C.), 6-4, 172
Walston has been one of the risers during the spring thanks to strong performances every time he's taken the mound. He's posted a 12-0 record with a 0.20 ERA and 129 strikeouts with just 18 walks in 68.1 innings pitched. The best part about Walston, however, is that he's projected to get even better. He can easily add weight to his frame, which will help him get his fastball up from where it currently sits at 93 mph. Most of his other pitches need work since he tends to stick with the fastball.
Draft forecast: A couple of mock drafts have Walston going in the first round, but more
than likely he goes on the second day and ends up going to college at
North Carolina State.Cutter Clawson, Laguna Beach (Calif.), 6-2, 205
A strong summer at the Area Code Games will get Clawson a look on the second day off the draft. He can get batters out with a 92 mph fastball and he has also shown a good curveball. He has been known for his command of the plate, but he has shown some control issues this spring, giving up 30 walks compared to 61 strikeouts in 45.1 innings pitched.
Draft forecast: Could go the end of the second day of the draft.Chris Villamin, Ledford Senior (Thomasville, N.C.), 6-2, 185
One of the top small school pitchers in the nation, Villamin has appeared as a first round pick in some mock drafts, but is more than likely a second day selection. He hits 94 mph on his fast ball and has shown good command of his pitches and getting ahead of the batter. He has 94 strikeouts in 41 innings pitched.
Could go first round, but more likely a second-day choice.