Pirates Draft Prospect Watch: Dylan Crews and Jacob Wilson Show Off the Power

The Pittsburgh Pirates have the first overall pick in the July 2023 MLB draft. Our draft preview looked at the top prospects for the pick.

Every Monday, we’ll recap notable performances from around the prep and college ranks, with video to give you an early look at who could be available to the Pirates. This is our seventh weekly recap of the weekend action for the top college draft prospects.

If you missed it from Thursday, we covered the mid-week games here.

Dylan Crews was our first draft prospect profile. The LSU outfielder went 1-for-4 with a triple, walk and two runs on Friday against Ole Miss. He homered in his first two at-bats on Saturday, finishing 3-for-5 with six RBIs. He went 3-for-4, with three singles and a walk on Sunday.

Crews has a .496 average through 39 games, with 12 doubles, one triple, 11 homers, 44 walks and nine HBP.

Here’s the first homer from Saturday

Here’s the second homer

LSU right-handed pitcher Paul Skenes is a top five draft prospect, who is off to a tremendous start. He was our fourth prospect profile. His last two starts were his worst of the year, though neither was terrible. He took on Ole Miss on Friday and put in a quality start, though once again he was far from his early season domination. He gave up three runs on four hits and three walks in six innings, while picking up 11 strikeouts. Three of the hits he allowed went for extra bases, including a homer.

Skenes is 7-1, 1.97 in 59.1 innings, with a .153 BAA and a 115:12 SO/BB ratio.

Here’s one of his strikeouts.

Chase Dollander is considered to be a top two pitcher in the class right now, along with Skenes. We took a closer look at him in our second prospect profile. The University of Tennessee right-hander went up against Vanderbilt this weekend. Dollander has slipped a bit in the rankings, but this start should help. He pitched a complete game in a contest ended early due to the ten-run rule. He went seven innings, allowing one run on six hits, three walks and nine strikeouts.

He is 5-4, 3.81 in 54.1 innings, with a .221 BAA and an 80:19 SO/BB ratio.

Florida outfielder Wyatt Langford has a chance to go #1. He was rated as the top draft prospect by The Athletic, with his athleticism being the thing that pushed him ahead of Crews for Keith Law. Baseball America had him ranked second in their latest update. He was our sixth draft prospect profile. He did not have a strong weekend.

Langford went 1-for-3 with a walk against South Carolina on Thursday. He was 1-for-5 with a single on Friday. He went 0-for-3 with a walk on Saturday. He’s hitting .370/.527/.739 in 34 games, with 23 extra-base hits and 37 walks.

Jacob Wilson from Grand Canyon University has a long shot at being the #1, but he’s still a top ten prospect. The son of former Pirates shortstop Jack Wilson went up against Utah Tech this weekend. He went 1-for-5 with a double on Friday. He had a 2-for-5 night on Saturday, with a grand slam. He had just one hit on Sunday, but it was another grand slam.

He’s hitting .424 in 34 games, with 12 doubles, four triples, four homers and 15 walks.

Here’s his Saturday homer

Here’s the Sunday homer. Check the score

Shortstop Jacob Gonzalez from Ole Miss needed to keep up his recent hot streak to have any chance at the #1 spot. He was unable to do that against a top team. He faced Paul Skenes on Friday night. Gonzalez struck out in the first and the fourth, then hit a fly out in the fifth, going 0-for-3 against the top pitcher. He was hit by a pitch in the eighth after Skenes left. He went 1-for-4 with a double on Saturday. He went 2-for-5 on Sunday, with two singles and a run.

He is hitting .331 in 40 games, with 16 doubles, seven homers, 30 walks and eight HBP.

Walker Jenkins was our third player profile article. His stats are going to be hard to come by, but I’ll add updates where I can. He has been walked a ton this year, so the video highlights are few and far between. Here’s a recent home run he crushed

Max Clark has been added to our watch recently. The Indiana outfielder was profiled here in our fifth article for the series. His season started on April 1st, so there’s still not much to go on yet that isn’t in his recent profile. As with Jenkins, stats will be added when possible. Clark didn’t have any specific stats available over the last week, but these videos were posted since our last check-in


John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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Crews’ production is off the charts; even for a high schooler those numbers would be elite. However, there is something about his swing that I just don’t like…not sure what it is, but it just looks odd to me 🤷🏻‍♂️


In the latest Top 25 the SEC has 5 of the first 7 teams with LSU No. 1 in the country. Toughest conference – always go to the stats that are only within the SEC.

Paul Skenes is the No. 1 Pitcher in the Conference.
10 ST, 59.1 IP, 32 H, 13 ER, 12 Walks/115 K’s, AA of .153

Dylan Crews is the No. 1 Hitter in the Conference.
129 AB, 64 H, 12 2B/1 3B/11 HR, 44 RBI, 44 Walks, 19 K, Slash of
.496/.643/.860/1.503 OPS

Right now it is a good bet that these two will be 1-1 and 1-2 in the draft. My pick would be Skenes – that K/BB of 115/12 and the AA of .153 are just too hard to ignore. And, last year he was both a Catcher and Pitcher at the Air Force Academy. Speaks well for character, background, intensity, etc.


Do you know if theres somewhere we can see their stats just in SEC games? Feels like that could be a pretty good deciding factor


With what Crews is doing to baseballs all season so far, I am leaning towards the “I’ll be super pissed if they don’t draft him 1.1” camp. He looks like Harper to me in the domination of his competition.


I am right there with you. Take Crews and pick up pitching elsewhere.

b mcferren

JoeBoo says draft Jacob Wilson for good future feel good fortune…

the reason Crews will end up being the pick is because of all those oppo homeruns and the Clemente wall

havent seen a right hander take full advantage of that across an entire season since PNC opened


Whichever player can reach the majors the quickest is the one to draft…


Jenkins and Clark could become great MLB players one day, but it looks like they’re taking BP in these videos facing 70-80 mph fastballs. Kinda feel the same way about Wilson. No way he’s facing SEC quality competition in whatever conference Grand Canyon State plays in.

Crews, Skenes, and to a lesser extent. Langford, Dollander, and Gonzales are succeeding vs the very best college competition.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see SEC players go 1-5 in this draft.


So Skenes isn’t an alien? His numbers are looming human all of a sudden. Considering where they were before the SEC season started, it will be interesting to see how he and Dollander compare numbers wise when all is said and done. Sample size can makes lots of folks look alien for a while.


Especially looking at whether or not Skenes’ stuff holds up through the end.

Wilbur Miller

9 HBP? Wonderful.


New market inefficiency!

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