Baseball America named Boston College right handed pitcher Justin Dunn among its 100 best college prospects for this summer's upcoming Major League Baseball Entry Draft. The publication rated him 60th among all NCAA players, 39th best among all pitchers.
Dunn was also the 30th best right handed pitcher and the 11th best prospect out of ACC schools.
A junior out of Freeport, New York, Dunn enjoyed a breakout season in 2015 in coming out of the Boston College bullpen. Despite giving up runs in extended work against Florida State and Louisville, he settled into a dominant role throughout the bulk of the Eagles' ACC stretch. He shut out opponents in 11 of 14 appearances between March 20th and May 3rd, finishing the season with 20 appearances and three starts, compiling a 4.94 ERA in 47.1 innings pitched. Dunn became the team leader in saves, recording five, while holding opponents to a .264 batting average.
His power-to-finesse ratio, which measures a pitcher's ability to control the outcome of a plate appearance over the batter, was 1.42, indicating he more often than not dictated what happened at the dish. It's that lively arm that has him rising up draft boards and almost assured of being selected within the first 10 rounds of the Draft.
Prior this offseason, Dunn joined Mike King among the top prospects named by Perfect Game USA. On that draft board, Dunn rated as the 201st best prospect overall, while King ranked 195th. Those locations would have the duo selected around the sixth or seventh round, a luxury that would afford them to give heavy consideration to starting their professional career. King was not selected as a top 100 NCAA prospect by Baseball America.
The MLB Entry Draft is one of the more unique entry points to a baseball player's professional career. MLB franchises can draft players who are finishing up their high school careers, but if those players choose to enroll in college, they become ineligible for another selection until after their third year on a college roster.
For BC, that's meant two former Eagles in the past two years have been selected early enough to start their careers. Two years ago, the New York Yankees chose redshirt sophomore Andrew Chin in the 15th round, while the San Francisco Giants selected junior Chris Shaw in last year's first round. Both chose to sign and exit Chestnut Hill to start their professional careers.
Dunn received the call after his senior year of high school in 2013, having been previously selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 37th round.
The Eagles open up the 2016 season on February 19th when they take on Northern Illinois at the Camelback Ranch facility in Glendale, Arizona.