Mock Draft 2.0

With the first round set to kick off on Sunday, we present our second mock draft. Full scouting reports can be found over on The Board.

1. Pittsburgh Pirates
Pick: Marcelo Mayer, SS, Eastlake HS (CA)

This pick is still not a lock, though there are people in the industry who feel like it should be based on their opinion of Mayer’s talent. The Pirates themselves have been tight-lipped about their intentions and haven’t begun engaging advisors in an illuminating way, at least not such that we’ve been able to ascertain either by engaging with those reps ourselves or by triangulating information by talking to the teams behind Pittsburgh. Right now Mayer is here in our mock because we think he’s the best player, and teams tend to think Pittsburgh will take a hitter and that Mayer is in that mix. Ben Cherington’s modus operandi in previous positions of power has been to take a college player, but he’s never picked first before. Whoever Pittsburgh takes up here (even Mayer) will sign for less than the slot value ($8.4 million). In Pittsburgh’s mind, is there a gap between Mayer and the rest of the pack? How big is that gap, and is there a player in the second tier of talent willing to take a deal far enough under slot to tempt the Pirates into moving off Mayer? That may only become evident as things crystallize behind Pittsburgh in the next several days.

2. Texas Rangers
Pick: Jack Leiter, RHP, Vanderbilt

If Mayer doesn’t go first, then he’s the favorite to go here and the general sense around baseball is that the other high school shortstops — Jordan Lawlar and Khalil Watson — are likely in the mix, too. Watson doesn’t fit with the org’s recent patterns of acquisition, so we’re skeptical of that one. Scouts with other teams speculated to us that Leiter better fits Texas’ self-perceived competitive timeline, and that they have the bonus pool flex to get a deal done even if Leiter’s camp sees this market as sub-optimal.

3. Detroit Tigers
Pick: Brady House, SS, Winder-Barrow HS (GA)

We had Detroit taking Brady House in our first mock, and sources indicate that he continued to impress the team in a recent private workout that reinforced the Tigers’ belief in both a plus hit and plus power tool. His large frame (6-foot-3 and 215 pounds) has many believing that he’ll need to slide to third base down the road, but his athleticism grades out very well for his size, and his believers see him staying at shortstop provided he doesn’t add too much bulk. The Tigers are also big fans of Mayer, but there are few scenarios that have him dropping to them. This is the ceiling for Oklahoma high school right-hander Jackson Jobe, as well. To reiterate from our last mock, the Tigers once had five people at a Jobe start this year. We don’t know if they’d take Leiter ahead of House/Jobe were he still on the board.

4. Boston Red Sox
Pick: Henry Davis, C, Louisville

Few teams have more wild rumors running around them than the Red Sox. There continues to be talk of the team trying to price Leiter down to them, but most sources believe that a team ahead of them will take him and dare his camp to turn down a $7 million payday. There are rumors Boston touched base with Mayer’s camp, but that the motivation there may be to inflate Mayer’s price above whatever threshold Pittsburgh deems acceptable so that they look elsewhere and Mayer goes second, making it possible for Leiter to fall to Boston at four. We’re giving them the best player available here, as they recently conducted a private workout with Henry Davis, House and Jud Fabian. Some hypothesize that if the Leiter/Mayer gambits don’t work, they’ll look to cut an under-slot deal, with prep catcher Harry Ford mentioned, in an attempt to spread out their $11 million-plus draft pool. This is also where Kumar Rocker’s market seems to begin.

5. Baltimore Orioles
Pick: Colton Cowser, CF, Sam Houston State

The Orioles would love to see something strange happen ahead of them in order to access one of Leiter or Davis, and they’ll jump on the opportunity if it presents itself. Barring that, they’ll likely cut a deal on one of the college outfielders, with Colton Cowser and Sal Frelick being the most frequently mentioned names. Cowser feels like the pick here, as some models (and the Orioles lean heavily on models) have him behind only Davis in terms of offensive potential among the college bats. If House is on the board here then he might be the value pick Baltimore is hoping for. Watson’s name was mentioned with this club earlier in the process, too.

6. Arizona Diamondbacks
Pick: Jordan Lawlar, SS, Jesuit Prep HS (TX)

The Diamondbacks get to take their pick of two of the high school shortstops (Watson, Lawlar) in this scenario, which felt like a pipe dream about a month ago. They’d likely discuss Rocker here, but our sources believe they’d prioritize the prep shortstops and would choose between Lawlar and Watson. Once seen as a potential No. 1 pick, Lawlar’s age and some minor swing-and-miss tendencies have him slipping a bit, but this is still great value at six. Cowser also feels like a player this team would be on. Remember to stash away Noah Miller’s name for a later round here.

7. Kansas City Royals
Pick: Kumar Rocker, RHP, Vanderbilt

At some point a team will see Rocker, who still pitched pretty well with suppressed stuff in 2021, as too good a value to pass on. They’ll see the player he was more recently (low-90s, living off of pitch execution, fourth starter look) as his floor, with the upside that he returns to (and sustains) peak form as better than their other options. If Rocker goes ahead of this, then House, Jobe and Watson are the names attached to this pick. We’re not sure how the club views Lawlar since he hasn’t been expected to fall to them at all, but in this scenario he’s just a different D-backs pick (either Rocker or Watson) from being available here.

8. Colorado Rockies
Pick: Khalil Watson, SS, Wake Forest HS (NC)

Last mock, we said Colorado would be hoping for one of the high school hitters to fall here and in this scenario, Watson does. It sounds like Cowser would also be in the mix here if he lasts this long. This is supposedly where Pennsylvania prepster Benny Montgomery’s market begins, but he’s more consistently mentioned in the middle of the round.

9. Los Angeles Angels
Pick: Jackson Jobe, RHP, Heritage Hall HS (OK)

The Angels rumors have been all over the board but they’re in a spot where one of the nine players mocked so far will fall to them and be considered good value. This is probably the ceiling for Texas right-hander Ty Madden, and there is a late rumor of them starting to kick the tires on two-way prep star Bubba Chandler, who is seen by most as more of second-half of the first round talent. Jobe, who might go as high as three, has some of the best raw stuff in the draft and has impressed this spring with his ability to harness it within the zone.

10. New York Mets
Pick: Matt McLain, SS, UCLA

The Mets continue to be attached to McLain after having extra heat in to see him late. Some teams feel McLain is a bit of a reach in the top 10, seeing him as more of a tweener (between shortstop and second base) with a questionable power ceiling. Frelick might tempt the Mets here, and there was a late rumor that they are considering Indiana high school shortstop Colson Montgomery, which feels like even a greater reach at this pick.

11. Washington Nationals
Pick: Sam Bachman, RHP, Miami (Ohio)

Teams think this would be Rocker’s floor considering Washington’s needs and the club’s track record with Rocker’s advisor. They’ve also taken pitchers coming off Tommy John, which would fit Gunnar Hoglund from this class, and falling power arms with injury issues in the past, like their 2019 first-rounder Jackson Rutledge. Bachman (hip) fits this exactly and could fly to the big leagues fast enough to help the current Nationals core. Kansas State left-hander Jordan Wicks’ range starts here.

12. Seattle Mariners
Pick: Sal Frelick, OF, Boston College

We have the Mariners attached to college hitters if one falls and in this scenario Frelick has. Frelick has plus speed and fantastic bat-to-ball ability, while proving to scouts this spring that he can play center field. Folks in baseball also think this is where Santa Barbara righty Michael McGreevy’s market starts since Seattle seems a little less likely to care about fastball shape (McGreevy throws two-seamers) and more likely to care about age, athleticism, and strike-throwing pitchers they can get to throw harder à la George Kirby and Emerson Hancock.

13. Philadelphia Phillies
Pick: Gunnar Hoglund, RHP, Ole Miss

Hoglund is so polished that even though his career begins in the middle of a TJ rehab, he’s still likely to be one of the first players from this draft class to reach the big leagues. Benny Montgomery’s name keeps getting mentioned here by scouts with other clubs but we can’t tell if it’s something they’ve heard via industry discussion or if it’s bunk made seemingly real by early mocks putting Benny here because he’s a local kid.

14. San Francisco Giants
Pick: Ty Madden, RHP, Texas

Most Giants chatter seems to revolve around the mid-range college arms expected to go in this area, but there’s been some late buzz on them being enamored with Benny Montgomery’s combination of size and athleticism. Teams further down the first round have asked us if we think they should be prepared for Madden to fall to them, which we take as an indication that he might slip. The Giants recent history includes them taking good value guys who’ve fallen unexpectedly (Hunter Bishop, Patrick Bailey) and if you’d have told us three months ago Madden would be available in the middle of the round we’d have said you were crazy.

15. Milwaukee Brewers
Pick: Jordan Wicks, LHP, Kansas State

Like San Francisco, Milwaukee is believed to be lining up the second tier of college arms. This could be the floor for Hoglund. If their board gets blown up by a run on college pitching, then they might cut a deep deal with a college bat like ECU’s Connor Norby or Trey Sweeney of Eastern Illinois. Sweeney’s name is getting peppered throughout the rest of the first round starting here.

16. Miami Marlins
Pick: Andrew Painter, RHP, Calvary Christian HS (FL)

We think Frelick is in the mix if he falls this far, but other than that we don’t have great dope here. The Marlins comp pick gives them flexibility, which makes them hard to pin down. This is an upside-y dart throw on our part.

17. Cincinnati Reds
Pick: Benny Montgomery, OF, Red Land HS (PA)

The Reds have lots of picks and lots of money. Some of the Montgomery rumors ahead of this keep his price tag nice and high. The Reds have done Northeast high schoolers in the past and Montgomery checks a lot of the frame/athleticism boxes they have had a penchant for in the recent past. We also have them on Florida high schoolers James Wood (they’d have to alter their entire draft to accommodate his early money ask), Jay Allen, and Painter, though they’d have to cut a deal with a college guy (maybe even an older one like Florida State catcher Matheu Nelson or Fordham lefty Matt Mikulski) in the comp round to make some of those work.

18. St. Louis Cardinals
Pick: Harry Ford, C, North Cobb HS (GA)

The recent Masyn Winn pick has teams pointing at two-way players Bubba Chandler (Georgia) and Carson Williams (SoCal) here. Ford made a late-season switch to Scott Boras for representation, so this situation mirrors the recent Tre Fletcher draft pick in that way. Teams are split as to whether to send him out as a catcher or allow his athleticism to hold down center field. Wicks would be a good value pick here, as well, in line with the Zack Thompson selection of a couple years ago.

19. Toronto Blue Jays
Pick: Jay Allen, CF, John Carroll Catholic HS (FL)

Sources told us Allen was in for a private workout and he starts getting mentioned consistently in this range of the first round.

20. New York Yankees
Pick: Will Bednar, RHP, Mississippi State

Will Bednar was creeping up draft boards throughout the spring and his postseason showing has his name being mentioned with several teams drafting in the 20s. The fastball sits in the low-to-mid 90s, and while scouts see his slider as plus, the computerized pitch graders based on spin and shape like it even more than that. The Yankees lean heavily on pitch data when it comes to their selections, and while this feels like Bednar’s ceiling, it also feels like a distinct possibility. Several other college arms like McGreevy, Gavin Williams, and Ryan Cusick could also be in their mix. New York had a national crosschecker at McGreevy’s last start but he didn’t throw well.

21. Chicago Cubs
Pick: Anthony Solometo, LHP, Bishop Eustace (NJ)

Solometo was in for a private workout. South Alabama outfielder Ethan Wilson also needs to come off the board somewhere in this range but we haven’t been able to attach his name to any club.

22. Chicago White Sox
Pick: Colson Montgomery, SS, Southridge HS (IN)

Montgomery’s name gained steam late in the year when he actually started playing and he went from in the mix with Anaheim in round two, to the comp round, to here, and now is mentioned as high as the Mets pick at 10. We also have the ChiSox on Arizona high school infielder Wes Kath.

23. Cleveland
Pick: Chase Petty, RHP, Mainland HS (NJ)

Chase Petty is one of the most polarizing figures in the draft. While he can touch 100 mph, his low-angle slinging delivery is the polar opposite of smooth, and when combined with his smallish frame the whole operation generates considerable reliever risk. That said, Cleveland loves throwing big stuff prep arms to their player dev group, with recent examples including Daniel Espino, Ethan Hankins and Lenny Torres. We were told to mock Petty to teams who care a lot about pitch data and this is one. Cleveland might also take a super model-driven approach this year as their area scouts were not at college games until the postseason, relying entirely on data and video for that demographic of player until that point.

24. Atlanta Braves
Pick: Trey Sweeney, SS Eastern Illinois

The Braves have been attached to plenty of high school outfielders and a few college arms (especially Cusick), but also have a history of taking college middle infielders who check the statistical boxes per their model. Trey Sweeney does just that, with power, walks, and plenty of contact, although evaluators are mixed on his swing mechanics.

25. Oakland Athletics
Pick: Will Taylor, SS, Dutch Fork HS (SC)

The A’s have been attached to high school bats throughout the spring, and all indications are that they will go in that direction. Taylor isn’t especially physical, but he’s tooled out with plus-plus wheels and gap power, and he was one of the better performers against top competition on the showcase circuit. He could be a tough sign due to a commitment to play football at Clemson, but as we saw with Kyler Murray, attraction to the gridiron hasn’t scared away the club in the past. They are also on Vegas-area outfielder Tyler Whitaker (power, big frame, whiffs) and Wes Kath (lefty contact).

26. Minnesota Twins
Pick: Joe Mack, C, Williamsville East (NY)

This is an up-the-middle player with good measurable power, and those traits in concert appeal to the Twins, who also employ Joe’s brother Charlie.

27. San Diego Padres
Pick: Frank Mozzicato, LHP, East Catholic HS (CT)

Here are the high schoolers who sources have told us worked out for the Padres: Jackson Merrill, Carson Williams, Tyler Whitaker, Jackson Baumeister, Jay Allen, James Wood, and Mozzicato (twice).

28. Tampa Bay Rays
Pick: Ryan Cusick, RHP, Wake Forest

California high school infielder Max Muncy and Wes Kath are possibilities here, but our general takeaway from that is that the Rays like the hitterish prep bats in this range. There are enough of those still around that we think their first pick will be at a more scarce position, like college pitching. The Rays like stuff as defined by analytics, and will likely weigh several college arms, including Cusick, Gavin Williams, McGreevey, and the late-rising Ky Bush from St. Mary’s, although there is a late rumor that Bush may go back to school. They also could be attracted to a performing college middle infielder like Tyler Black or Connor Norby, which fits their taste for contact-oriented, short-levered infielders.

29. Los Angeles Dodgers
Pick: Max Muncy, SS, Thousand Oaks HS (CA)

This last pick of the first-round might be a good value spot for Jud Fabian, but the Dodgers still feel burned after taking a high-whiff, toolsy college outfielder in Jeren Kendall with their first-round pick in 2017. Rumors say the club has been busy lining up the bevy of high school infielders who could go between 20 and 40, including Wes Kath, Isaac Pacheco, Peyton Stovall and Carson Williams. Let’s face it, by the time you get to end of first round, we are playing an educated guessing game, and it’s just too much damn fun to give them another dude named Max Muncy, who will likely go in this range.

30. Cincinnati Reds
Pick: Connor Norby, 2B, East Carolina

Again, we expect the Reds will mix stable college players with an overslot prep or two. Norby is likely a model darling because he’s barely 21 and he might already be gone at this point.

31. Miami Marlins
Pick: Ethan Wilson, OF, South Alabama

Just good value here. There are a number of high school outfielders who should be off the board before pick 50, including Joshua Baez, Tyler Whitaker and James Wood. Wood is a 6-foot-7, 240 pound beast with massive raw power, but he’s also reportedly thrown out an equally massive price tag a week before the draft. Wilson provides a safer commodity as a college bat with big contact skills, and while he hit just eight home runs this spring, his exit velocities suggest there’s more power to come.

32. Detroit Tigers
Pick: Jud Fabian, CF, Florida

The Tigers have displayed a recent trend of taking SEC bats early in the draft, and this feels like a perfect value-pick spot for Fabian, who has plus power, plus speed, true center field ability and strikes out at an alarming rate. Detroit was also heavy at Gavin Williams’ fantastic postseason start against Vanderbilt.

33. Milwaukee Brewers
Pick: Gavin Williams, RHP, East Carolina

Williams has been mentioned vaguely in the late teens and early-20s after nearly out-dueling Kumar Rocker in Super-Regional play, but not with any specific team. He’s a big-bodied kid with equally large velocity and a plus slider, but a questionable changeup and inconsistent command leaves some teams with lingering worries about his ability to start long-term.

34. Tampa Bay Rays
Pick: Wes Kath, SS, Desert Mountain HS (AZ)

The Rays had three scouts at Kath’s final game.

35. Cincinnati Reds
Pick: Matt Mikulski, LHP, Fordham

Mikulski is a small-conference senior whose stuff exploded this year. He shortened his arm action, began throwing much harder, and has multiple bat-missing secondaries. Landon Knack, an example of a senior who had a stuff spike last year, got $715,000 in the second round, and Mikulski has a better chance of starting (or pitching multiple innings). He’s a high-priority player with whom to cut an under-slot deal, and in this scenario with Benny Montgomery, James Wood, or some other high-upside high schooler in play for the Reds, he’s a great fit.

36. Minnesota Twins
Pick: Matheu Nelson, C, Florida State

Minnesota has done older guys with huge power before (Rooker). Nelson was eligible last year but didn’t play well, then had a huge 2021.





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Indiana Cardinal
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Indiana Cardinal

No Bubba Chandler in the first 36 picks???? Is that because you have heard something specific that he is going to Clemson and is unsignable? Otherwise how is he NOT in the first round?

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

Generally speaking, I don’t think you shouldn’t pick prep right-handers at all but I think this guy is an exception. He’s got that backspinning curveball that is such a powerful weapon right now, and if he fails as a pitcher you can always try him at shortstop.

He’s a little old for the class which means STL and Cleveland probably aren’t on him and that hurts because both of them aren’t afraid of taking prep throwers. That means he could fall if he gets past the #11-#14 range. But it’s hard to imagine a whole lot of smart teams like the Cubs, White Sox, Braves, and Padres passing on him, and if he does get past them he’s a huge target for an overslot deal for teams that saved money.

gettwobrute79
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gettwobrute79

Don’t pick prep righties ever? Or just don’t pick them in the first round?

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

Hoo boy, this is a long answer.

If you do take arms up top, college arms are safer because they have made it to a certain point in their development already without flaming out. The attrition rate for the prep pitchers is enormous, and is particularly bad for prep righties (For some reason, and I don’t know why, prep lefties seem to do better). Riley Pint is an extreme example, but it’s not unheard of to get prep right handers totally flaming at the top of the draft (Tyler Kolek, Kohl Stewart), and a career trajectory like Dylan Bundy is much more common than becoming a star.

This is confusing because if you look at the MLB leaderboards, you see some prep righties who were taken early up there like Zack Greinke and Zack Wheeler. But that’s a denominator issue–the number of hits were higher before but the hit rate itself was down because teams picked prep pitchers like crazy ~15 years ago. For example, let’s take Zack Greinke. He is undeniably a star, but he wasn’t even the first prep righty taken that year. In fact, he was the fourth prep pitcher taken that year, behind Chris Gruler, Adam Loewen, and Clint Everts. Zack Wheeler was a hit, but he was the second prep right hander taken that year, behind Matt Hobgood.

The only team that had figured out how to draft prep right-handers recently were the Braves under Copollela (Anderson and Soroka) and he and much of his team are in exile. For the rest of them, they could get lucky with a prep right hander but if so it’s probably dumb luck.

gettwobrute79
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gettwobrute79

Ok that is a long answer, but it feels like you’re saying no prep righties high up. Or at least rarely. I get it, given the incredible bust rate.
I looked up the first five drafts with slotting to check on the prep righties (2012-2016) drafted in the first round only (not counting the comp round). A few of the guys are still a bit too new (Matt Manning) to go one way or the other. But your results mostly hold: only Giolito (at 16 in 2012), and Anderson (at 3 in 2016) are successes. Lucas Sims has been an ok reliever. And that’s about it. The busts include Travieso and Hensley in 12, Stewart and Harvey in13, Kolek and Holmes in 14 (Toukki may end up in that category too), Russell and Burrows in 15, and Pint in 16, with Whitley trending down. So of the 15, there are two hits, one guy still too new, an ok reliever, and most of the remaining 11 are busts.
One thing here though is that the slotting era seems to have seen a reduction in prep righties in the first round. Comparing it to the last five years of the old system, there were 23 prep righties in the first round. I know others have noted that prep arms often slide on draft day. Whether that’s due to teams increasing risk worries, the slotting system limiting funds or a combination of factors, who knows. Prep righties are risky in the first round, but I don’t think that means you shouldn’t take them if they start to drop out of that range. And the first rounders still don’t have as bad a track record as prep catchers.

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

This was something that I think someone in the Oakland A’s office flagged early on–that prep pitchers had an incredibly high bust rate. I think I read it first in Moneyball? And then I looked it up and it was absolutely correct. My guess is that there was a bit of a correction as teams realized they were right, specifically about prep right handers.

But even then I’m pretty sure they haven’t corrected enough. It is true that bust rates for all draft picks are pretty high, but to me this rate seems unacceptably bad, along with prep catchers. But at least with Harry Ford you can switch him to center field. I’d be wary if my team took Jobe in the top 10, or Painter / Petty in the first round.

I’d say that you can’t avoid picking prep pitchers or even prep righties entirely since you need a million pitchers in your system one way or another. But if you take a look at where the all-star hitters come from, they’re almost all in the top two rounds, and the drop off for pitching isn’t even close to being that steep.

gettwobrute79
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gettwobrute79

For fun, I looked up prep catchers and it’s almost worse. Since 2007, only Mesoraco was a hit in the first round. Brett Lowrie was drafted as a catcher, but moved off it. Reese McGuire looks like a possible timeshare starter. Tyler Stephenson seems like a possible hit too, although it’s still early. So you have one hit, one part time guy, one guy who moved off catcher and doesn’t really count, and one with the jury out. The remaining seven (Skipworth, Deglan, O’Connor, Swihart, Trahan, Coulter, and Ciuffo) all busted.
I agree on a Harry Ford type, similar to what the Nats did with Harper; the athleticism is so good, you don’t want to derail the bat completely by putting them through that physical grind. There certainly isn’t the volume of prep catchers drafted as prep righties because the need isn’t there. But the risk profile seems so high for both categories, even if the type of risk is different.

Dmjn53
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Dmjn53

I’d probably argue against Mesoraco being a “hit” as well. He played parts of 7 seasons and was sub-replacement level in 5 of them. Finished with 2.1 career WAR

jdr
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jdr

“This was something that I think someone in the Oakland A’s office flagged early on–that prep pitchers had an incredibly high bust rate. I think I read it first in Moneyball?”

What I recall is the massive hissy fit that observation set off. If you were posting on baseball boards in the 2002-03 era, the height of the Moneyball backlash, one of the things the traditionalists were often bugged the most about was the bit about prep players being exceptionally risky draft picks. Baseball America in particular, predictably given their business model, went ballistic. I think it clashed with the apocryphal baseball story of the mysterious, hulking Nebraska farm boy in the Roy Hobbs/Mickey Mantle mode who steps out of the mists throwing 99-mph fastballs and crushing 500-ft. home runs. It didn’t mesh with the bonus baby-era dream that you could find a guy no one had ever heard of, bring him to the big city, and turn him into a franchise savior.

bosoxforlife
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bosoxforlife

The answer is that Soroka is from Calgary and Anderson is from upstate New York. Give the Braves credit for not succumbing to the very real bias that most teams show against northern tier players. The players from the warm weather sites have developed more of their natural ability, are closer to their peak and have less upside in front of them.To get drafted early in the first round out of high school, from a cold weather climate requires the player to be measurably better than a less talented player who has been able to polish his game year round. George Springer is a perfect example. He was drafted in the 48th round out of high school in CT. Only after several years of excelling at UConn did he finally reach the 1st round. Matt Harvey had to go to North Carolina and A.J. Pollock to Notre Dame for their talent to be recognized. If Frank Mozzicato is selected in the 1st round it will be the first high school player from CT picked in the 1st round that I can ever remember. Why did Mike Trout last until the 24th pick or Alex Jackson, supposedly the best hitter in his draft class, turn out to be a zero? 50 million people live in California and more than 50 million people live in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and New England but the numbers in baseball don’t even come close to being equal. The limited scouting in the cold weather sites lets lots of premium talent slip through the cracks.

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

But also, I’m less scared by Chandler because he is a viable shortstop if he completely flames out as a pitcher, because nobody is talking about him as a Top 10 pick, and because he’s got great spin efficiency and that rare backspinning curveball. I mean, he’s risky too but I’d rather take him at #13-#20 than Jobe at #3-#9.

Cave Dameron
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Cave Dameron

What is a backspinning curveball?

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

Yikes, that would be something. Backspinning fastball. Power curveball.

gettwobrute79
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gettwobrute79

The pitcher has a string attached to the ball so it’s like a yo-yo.

cowdisciple
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cowdisciple

So they finally jazzed it up.

Turks Teeth
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Turks Teeth

But then you’ll get an organization like the Angels selecting him and *starting* him on the dirt, only exploring his mound promise when he fizzles out in AA four years later. He might be “viable” but there are certainly stronger plays among the prep bats on the board if a shortstop is what an org is truly looking for.

I find the two-way illusion (think Kaleb Cowart, not Shohei Ohtani) often disguises organizational indecision as portfolio diversification, but it’s still a single player holding, with uncertain ceilings on both sides of his game.

sadtrombone
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sadtrombone

Also, I think it’s worth it to take fliers on prep righties later. In general you want to draft as many arms as possible and it might be hard to just take college pitchers. But up top? They’re scary.

SF Draft Talk
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I think the price tag (he’s going to play QB for Clemson) and the right handed high schooler demographic could push him down far enough that only teams with a high bonus pool could sign him. That might end up being the comp round or early in round 2 to a team like the Reds or Tigers.

As much as “best player available” is the mantra (as it should be), the fact remains that $$$ is a huge factor for where players get drafted. The current format doesn’t promote BPA. Chandler certainly has 1st round talent but that doesn’t mean he goes in the 1st round.

Seamaholic
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Seamaholic

Curve balls don’t have back spin.

Bruce Schwindt
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Bruce Schwindt

You seem very attached to Bubba, but to think you know more than Eric or Kevin is silly.

Kevin Goldstein
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He definitely might go in the first round, but we couldn’t find an obvious home for him based on our conversations, and at a certain point TBD he becomes unsignable. We’ll have another mock before the draft, and there’s a chance he makes that one.

BillClinton
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BillClinton

With their $ pool, what about Pittsburgh’s comp round pick?