The Dallas-Fort Worth area is known as a place that produces high-quality baseball talent. Three of the last four MLB Drafts have had players with Dallas-area ties selected in the Top 10 (Kyler Murray, Bobby Witt Jr., Jordan Lawler).
What type of representation could Dallas-Fort Worth have in this year’s draft? Here’s a look at 10 locals who could hear their named called this coming weekend.
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1) SS Jett Williams, Rockwall-Heath
For only a high schooler, Williams, The Dallas Morning News offensive player of the year in 2022, has already built quite the reputation for his production. MLB.com describes Williams as a “favorite gut-feel guy for a lot of scouts,” because he’s consistently excelled at every stage he’s been, even though scouts feel his potential could be somewhat limited by his 5-foot-8 stature. Baseball America still has Williams, a Mississippi State signee, as the No. 15 overall prospect in the draft. Scouts feel there’s a chance Williams could go even higher. As a junior at Rockwall-Heath, Williams earned All-Area honors and helped the Hawks win their first state title. This past season he hit .411 with seven home runs, 24 stolen bases and 43 RBIs.
2) SS Peyton Graham, Oklahoma
The former Waxahachie infielder had one of the best seasons in all of college baseball this past season. Graham finished the season hitting .335 and became the first Division I player since 2004 to hit 20 home runs and steal 30 bases in a season, according to MLB.com. He was a major reason why the Sooners made it all the way to the College World Series finals. At 6-foot-4, Graham offers positional flexibility, according to scouts. MLB.com has Graham ranked as the No. 28 overall prospect, and Baseball America has Graham at No. 35.
3) 3B Jayson Jones, Denton Braswell
Jones, an Arkansas signee, was considered a potential first round pick at the beginning of the draft cycle, but is now ranked as a top-200 prospect by both MLB.com and Baseball America. The first-team all-area infielder has an “explosive swing,” according to Baseball America, and might have the most raw power of any high school prospect in the class of 2022, according to MLB.com. He hit the most 400-foot home runs at the MLB Draft Combine back in June to prove it. He hit .397 for Denton Braswell this season and had more walks (17) than strikeouts (7).
4) OF Max Belyeu, Aledo
Belyeu is ranked as the No. 168 prospect on Baseball America’s rankings. A big reason-why is his “pure” hitting ability and power potential, according to the website’s scouting report. The 6-foot-2 left-handed outfielder helped lead Aledo to the regional final, where the Bearcats lost to Mansfield Legacy. If a team wants him bad enough, they’ll have to show it in the negotiation process and lure him away from his commitment to Texas.
5) C Jimmy Crooks, Oklahoma
Crooks, an all-area selection his senior season, was the leader of a Euless Trinity team that had its best season in school history. Despite that, Crooks took the junior college route and landed at McLennan Junior College. He spent one season there and then ended up at Oklahoma. This past season he helped lead the Sooners to the College World Series Final, finishing the year with an average above .300 and nine home runs. He’s ranked as the No. 151 prospect in MLB.com’s rankings. Baseball America ranked him as the No. 261 prospect, but added that he could go off the board sooner than that.
6) OF Jared Thomas, Waxahachie
Thomas is rated as the No. 218 prospect in the draft by MLB.com, but it may not matter. In terms of pure hitting, scouting report on the website refers to him as the second-best north Texas high school prospect behind Jett Williams. He even did plenty of damage on the mound, as well, earning all-area status with a 1.62 ERA after he finished the season with back-to-back no hitters. Thomas, however, might not be sign-able, according to MLB.com, and there’s a strong chance he ends up at Texas.
7) RHP Jacob Meador, Dallas Baptist
The former Burleson Centennial was drafted once before. IN 2019, the Seattle Mariners selected him in the 31st round, but he elected to go to TCU. He then transferred to Dallas Baptist this past season where he finished 7-2 with a 5.24 ERA, though he did have 91 strikeouts in 68.2 innings. He had two innings where he had double-digit strikeouts, showing scouts talent that should make Meador a top-10 round selection. He’s ranked as the No. 288 prospect in the draft, according to Baseball America.
8) LHP Trenton Shaw, Plano Prestonwood
The Oklahoma State signee was an all-area selection this past year. He starred as both a hitter and a pitcher for the TAPPS Division I state champions. At the plate, he hit .470 with 14 extra base hits and 30 RBIs. On the mound, he struck out 108 batters in 63 innings. His future is believed to be as a pitcher. The 6-foot-4 lefty is already throwing in the low-to-mid 90s. He’s ranked as the No. 313 prospect in the draft, according to Baseball America.
9) RHP Micah Dallas, Texas A&M
Dallas etched his name in Texas A&M lore this past season by knocking out the rival Longhorns in the College World Series. He pitched into the six inning of that rivalry win and allowed two runs. In total, Dallas went 7-3 on the season and had a 5.18 ERA. Dallas, an Aubrey native, was home-schooled in high school. He’s ranked as the No. 340 prospect in the draft, according to Baseball America.
10) OF Brenner Cox, Prosper Rock Hill
Another Texas signee with the chance to get drafted, Cox is another outfielder with plenty of hitting potential. The two-time all-area selection had a .487 on base percentage this past season, hitting .302 with four home runs. He also stole 26 bases. He also played quarterback for Rock Hill’s football team. The 6-foot-2 prospect is ranked as the No. 349 prospect by Baseball America.