Baseball America has published its list of the top 500 draft prospects for the upcoming MLB draft in July, and five former VBLers have made the list:
#42: Connor Norby (Waynesboro 2019), 2B, East Carolina- BA says that Norby might slip into the back end of the first round after hitting .415/.484/.659 in 246 at-bats, with 64 runs scored, 15 doubles, 15 home runs, 51 RBIs, 33/34 BB/K, and 18 stolen bases. The Valley League has had one first rounder in the past nine drafts- Nate Pearson (Staunton 2016) in 2017.
#247: Wes Clarke (Waynesboro 2019), C/1B, South Carolina- Clarke got off to probably the best start of any college player this spring, and ended up at .271/.428/.663 in 199 at-bats, with nine doubles and 23 home runs (tied for first in all of Division I).
#294: Anthony Simonelli (Winchester 2018), RHP, Virginia Tech- Simonelli spent 2018 at Coastal Carolina, 2019 at St. John’s River, and the last two seasons at VT. This year, he went 5-2, 3.91 in 66 2/3 innings, with a 1.05 WHIP and 77 strikeouts.
#462: Jonny Butler (Winchester 2018), OF, NC State- Butler was a catalyst for the Wolfpack in 2021, hitting .376/.452/.663 in 202 at-bats, with 12 doubles, 14 home runs, 53 RBIs, and 16 stolen bases.
#484: Bennett Hostetler (Covington 2018), SS, North Dakota State- Hostetler hit .394/.513/.606 this spring, with 13 doubles, 10 home runs, 36 walks, 19 hit-by-pitches, and 19 stolen bases.
There will be more, of course, but we can expect these five men to be drafted!