Originally Posted by IslandRed
I think he just means that more teams are drafting heavily from the college ranks, so the talent pool is depleted a little quicker. The third-round college pick of ten years ago might be going off the board in the second round today. Conversely, good prep players hang on the board a little longer than they would have before. That's the theory, anyway.
I remember a recent BP analysis on the draft showed that the value of college and high-school picks are coming back into balance after a period of collegiate dominance. Many possible reasons were kicked around -- like the aforementioned overfishing of collegians -- but the one I found most convincing is that signing bonuses have become so large, the cream of the prep crop hardly ever bypasses pro ball for college anymore. There are exceptions, and of course a lot changes between the ages of 18 and 21, which is why there are still great players coming out of college. Just not quite as many as there used to be.
I have a theory too.... pitch counts and babying high school pitchers a lot more than they used to. When kids aren't blowing arms out at nearly the same rate you are going to have more kids turning promise into something.