1. Kolby Allard, LHP, San Clemente HS (Calif.) — Allard starts the year on the top, and it wasn’t a terribly difficult decision. The southpaw dominated over the summer while touching 96 mph with his fastball and sitting 92-95, and his breaking ball is a plus offering right now with hard, late break. Add in his athleticism and that there’s still some projection left in his left arm, and you get the best hurler in the class despite his relatively small stature (listed at 6’0″).
2. Mike Nikorak, RHP, Stroudsburg HS (Penn.) — No prep pitcher improved his stock more than Nikorak did this summer, as the right-hander went from relative obscurity to a pitcher that more than one scout I spoke with thought belongs at the top of this list. There isn’t much projection left in his frame but he’s been clocked up to 97 and will show a plus breaking-ball and solid change as well. If he shows the same stuff this spring he did in June, he’s a lock to be one of the first arms to come of the board — prep or collegiate.
3. Justin Hooper, LHP, De La Salle HS (Calif.) — The good: a 6’7″ left-hander with solid athleticism, a fastball that will hit 97 and a curveball with good shape, plus an above-average change. The bad: Well below-average command of any of the three pitches, and one of the more high-effort deliveries we saw over the summer. Someone is going to fall in love with the good, but the bad makes Hooper a risky proposition, in my humble estimation.