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Mock Draft #4 – Supplemental First Round

Happy tax day!

33. Houston Astros – Robbie Aviles, RHP, Suffern HS (NY) – The Astros have been building strong pitching depth through the draft in the two years since Bobby Heck took over, and I expect more of the same this year. After getting their hitting prospect with Austin Wilson early, going with Gausman and Aviles, a pair of high-ceiling arms in the Astros’ style of drafting would make a lot of sense. No matter who the names are on draft day, I expect the Astros to walk away with at least a pair of high-level arms. Previously: NR, 42, 31.
34. Toronto Blue Jays – Michael Choice, OF, UT Arlington – Choice is really rising up boards with an excellent junior season, and the only thing holding him back from being a surefire first-rounder is a lack of elite tools beyond his bat. He offers plus to plus-plus power, and I expect the Jays to look for power arms and power bats, though they might want a little more athleticism than Choice from their picks under a new regime. Previously: NR, 50, 41.
35. Atlanta Braves – Cameron Bedrosian, RHP, East Coweta HS (GA) – I know plenty of Braves fans would be absolutely thrilled with this selection, and this pick would also carry a lot of weight in the local media, who are almost on the fence in terms of support for the front office. Bedrosian has been solid all year, and even though he’s not very projectable, he’s a solid mid-rotation prospect who knows how to pitch and has incredible bloodlines. Previously: NR, 32, 33.
36. Boston Red Sox – Brandon Workman, RHP, Texas – I don’t have any overwhelming reason as to why I dropped Workman down in this mock, but a combination of questions and the fact that there are pitchers jumping over him makes him fall just a tad. The Red Sox have a good history of picking power Texas arms from the college ranks, with Alex Wilson being the most recent example. I’m sure they’d be thrilled to get an arm like Workman with this pick. Previously: 15, 31, 13.
37. Los Angeles Angels – Griffin Murphy, LHP, Redlands East Valley HS (CA) – Murphy has risen up as the top prep left-handed arm in this class, and he continually impresses from start-to-start. I’m not short on reports at all for him, as dozens of scouts attend each and every start. The Angels always look for strong prep left-handed pitching, especially from their own backyard, and this pick makes a lot of sense, though Murphy could rise even higher than this. Previously: NR, NR, NR.
38. Toronto Blue Jays – Yasmani Grandal, C, Miami – Grandal is still in a fight for the top college catcher in this class, though I give a slight edge to Micah Gibbs for his receiving skills right now. However, Grandal has the better bat and a higher ceiling, and I’m sure that Toronto is looking to fill out as many positions as possible with their huge number of early picks in this draft. Previously: NR, NR, 22.
39. Boston Red Sox – LeVon Washington, OF, Chipola JC (FL) – Washington has been coming around lately, but the tools are still not what they were. Combine that with the fact that he’s still a Boras client, has huge leverage as a junior college freshman, and other options have shown up, and you have a falling star. However, some people will start to sleep on Washington too early, and he could still be a major factor, especially to a team like the Red Sox that has a big draft budget. Previously: 14, 8, 32.
40. Los Angeles Angels – Bryan Morgado, LHP, Tennessee – Ok, maybe I’m going overboard with the Angels and left-handed pitching. However, they drafted three left-handers early last year in Tyler Skaggs, Tyler Kehrer, and Pat Corbin, so I’m not exaggerating too much, if at all. Morgado gets mixed results, but he still has mid-rotation upside and excellent stuff from the left side, so he’s a candidate to have a better pro career for numbers than collegiate career. Previously: 31, 39, 49.
41. Toronto Blue Jays – Chad Bettis, RHP, Texas Tech – Power arms are power arms, and though most project Bettis as a long-term reliever, I’m a firm believer that there are enough teams out there that will try Bettis as a starter. He’s done quite well in a difficult transition this year, and if he’s healthy and successful come June, I think a team with multiple picks could pick him early as a possible starting arm. Previously: NR, 26, 37.
42. Tampa Bay Rays – Barret Loux, RHP, Texas A&M – Though the Rays rarely venture into the college ranks early on, I think budgetary reasons might change that a little this year. In addition, their history shows that when they do venture into the college ranks, it’s for big-armed pitchers, and Loux is quickly on the rise as just that. Durability is still a question for Loux, but as the season goes, he should answer some of those questions, and he could sneak into the true first round. Previously: NR, NR, NR.
43. Seattle Mariners – Todd Cunningham, OF, Jacksonville State – This is the Mariners’ first choice, and I’m split between them going for a big name that’s dropped due to bonus demands and a solid name for quick movement up the chain. They spread it out last year beyond the selection of Dustin Ackley, and collegiate picks dominated past their selection of Steve Baron in the supplemental first round. Cunningham is still a solid hitter with upside as a starter. Previously: NR, 47, NR.
44. Detroit Tigers – Stetson Allie, RHP, St. Edwards HS (OH) – This is also the Tigers’ first pick, and I think their history clearly shows that they like big-armed pitchers if the fit is right, and signability isn’t as much of an issue, as they open their pocket books for players regularly. Allie is seen almost completely as a future reliever at this point, but the talent is just too good to ignore. The North Carolina commitment is an issue, though, and it shouldn’t be ignored. Previously: 16, 20, 25.
45. Texas Rangers – Tyrell Jenkins, RHP, Henderson HS (TX) – Though I see the Rangers adding in more hitting into their draft mix this year, they’ll still get their share of pitching, especially on the high school side early on. Jenkins has had one of the best early-season runs in terms of improved stuff and performance, and this slot might actually be too low for him. He’s athletic and offers #2 starter upside, and that could be a steal in this range. Previously: NR, NR, NR.
46. St. Louis Cardinals – Kyle Blair, RHP, San Diego – With Matt Harvey having been their first selection in this mock draft, I think the Cardinals might be looking at a pitching-hitting combo in the supplemental first round. Blair has had a rough go at times this year, but his stuff is too hard to ignore at times when he’s on, and teams that like prototypical pitching prospects, like the Cardinals, should be looking at him starting in this range. Previously: 26, 40, 38.
47. Colorado Rockies – Jedd Gyorko, 2B, West Virginia – Gyorko hasn’t been as on fire as he’s been in previous years, but the hitting impact is still there, even if you think he’s done all his damage against weaker pitching. The Rockies typically like college bats, and even though Gyorko’s defensive value is up in the air, teams in this range could be looking at him as a hitter that could move quickly and provide value in short order. Previously: 29, 36, 45.
48. Detroit Tigers – Kris Bryant, 3B, Bonanza HS (NV) – Though Bryant’s stock isn’t as shiny as it used to be, there are still a fair number of teams that see him as a potential impact bat. The question is more about how much of a chance a team has to mold that bat into a consistent performer. The raw power is unquestioned, and teams that value power could easily pick him in the range of the supplemental first round or second round. Previously: 11, 44, 34.
49. Texas Rangers – Reggie Golden, OF, Wetumpka HS (AL) – Like I said above, the Rangers are expected to mix in a few more bats in the early going, and after getting Gibbs in this scenario, I see them adding to outfield depth within the prep ranks. Golden has huge power in a tightly-coiled, athletic body, and though his bust rate is a little high, he’s still a desirable candidate for the first couple of rounds come June. Previously: NR, NR, 44.
50. St. Louis Cardinals – Austin Wates, OF, Virginia Tech – After getting Kyle Blair with their first supplemental first round pick, I’d expect a hitter to be selected here, and Wates offers plenty of value for this range. Wates is much more athletic than his normal first base position suggests, and he’s going to get a fair shot to play center field as a pro, and the Cardinals value players with defensive value from the collegiate level. Previously: NR, NR, NR.

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April 15, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 4 Comments

Mock Draft #4 – First Round

It’s been three weeks since my last mock draft, and there’s enough movement for me to feel comfortable updating my projections. I feel much better with this mock than I did the last one, and like last year, I’ll feel the same way with each mock as the draft gets closer.

This is the fourth installation, and I’ve put the last three draft positions I had players at next to their names for your enjoyment this time, with the most recent position coming last.

1. Washington Nationals – Bryce Harper, C, CC of Southern Nevada – Well, we’ve reached the point where the common fan only knows of Harper’s faults, and they’re about ready to tear him down as the next overhyped bust. That’s what incessant media coverage and nitpicking does. However, I feel very comfortable with this placement, and I don’t expect any movement between now and June. Previously: 1, 1, 1.
2. Pittsburgh Pirates – Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Ole Miss – Though I’m sure some people will think this movement has to do with me seeing Pomeranz in person last weekend, I had already made my mind up for this change before I ventured up to Athens. Pomeranz is showing the best stuff of the college pitching class, along with incredible on-field performance, and he’s a legitimate top five option. Previously: 9, 16, 4.
3. Baltimore Orioles – Anthony Ranaudo, RHP, LSU – I’m glad to see that Ranaudo is starting to get back into shape, and if he stays healthy, there’s no reason that he won’t be back in the competition for top college arm. I know that the placement of Ranaudo and Jameson Taillon is most tricky, and I think one of the biggest questions will come with the picks of the Pirates and Orioles. Previously: 2, 4, 14.
4. Kansas City Royals – Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands HS (TX) – Kansas City fans rejoice! The Royals are bound to find themselves picking from a big pool of top talent, and it’s likely they’ll pick a top-tier starter, either at the college or high school level. A lot of their choices will depend on how much the Pirates and Orioles spend on their first picks above them, and if 2009 is a true barometer, then the Royals could up with the second-best talent in the class in the fourth spot. Previously: 3, 3, 3.
5. Cleveland Indians – Chris Sale, LHP, Florida Gulf Coast – I still see the Indians going with the top available college arm as they re-stock the pitching in their system during a rebuild. I point to a college arm, because they haven’t historically spent much more than slot in their top picks, and collegiate pitchers typically come in close to slot. The choice here is between Sale and Deck McGuire, and Sale represents a higher ceiling, though with more risk. Previously: 10, 12, 5.
6. Arizona Diamondbacks – Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech – It’s time to take the Diamondbacks away from the A.J. Cole selection. The reason for that is simply that there is a strong possibility that they’re likely to be able to choose one of the top college arms, and that makes more sense to me considering their history outside of Jarrod Parker. McGuire hasn’t really fallen in the last three weeks, but with Ranaudo coming back, he could slip into the tier below Pomeranz and Ranaudo. Previously: 5, 10, 2.
7. New York Mets – Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley HS (FL) – Sometimes pitchers that slowly improve over time are overlooked by the names that explode onto the scene. Whitson is one of those steadily-improving pitchers that is flashing top tier stuff, coming out in better shape and with sharper command than in the summer and fall. I see the Mets going after a prep arm, though if Taillon slides, I don’t see them spending that money. Previously: 7, 9, 11.
8. Houston Astros – Austin Wilson, OF, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA) – This pick assumes that Wilson doesn’t want $10 million, not that I’m saying I’ve heard anything about him wanting that much. Wilson represents the best raw upside in the entire hitting class outside of Harper, and the Astros typically love their raw, powerful, athletic hitters. With a pair of first-round picks, it’s questionable that they could afford an Austin Wilson type of prospect, but don’t underestimate them. Previously: 17, 13, 10.
9. San Diego Padres – Manny Machado, SS, Brito Private HS (FL) – I would probably put Machado up a spot with the Astros if they hadn’t drafted and signed Jiovanni Mier a year ago. The new San Diego front office finds itself in the midst of a big re-build with their system, and I see them going for one more position prospect up the middle to build a potential big-time lineup including prospects Logan Forsythe, James Darnell, Everett Williams, Donavan Tate, and Jaff Decker. Add in a shortstop or catcher and you have the potential for elite production in a few years. Previously: 21, 11, 9.
10. Oakland Athletics – Zack Cox, 3B, Arkansas – Once again, no matter who I pick for the Athletics, I’m going to be told I’m behind on their new scouting techniques, which focus more on athleticism and upside. Well, I think people constantly undersell Cox, who is the best collegiate hitter behind Harper. Though there are concerns about his power projection, he could be a .300 hitter with 20-25 home runs a year, and that’s about the level that people expected from a Brett Wallace or Ike Davis in a loaded class in 2008. Previously: 8, 5, 8.
11. Toronto Blue Jays – A.J. Cole, RHP, Oviedo HS (FL) – Lately, I’ve found myself really wondering where the Blue Jays will go with their bounty of picks. How willing are they to really spend the most they’ve ever spent in the draft? Well, I believe in their commitment, though I completely dismiss the notion that they’ll spend $16 million this year. Cole represents an option they’ll likely have for extreme upside in their pick, and they could go either way with a position player or pitcher. Previously: 6, 6, 6.
12. Cincinnati Reds – Alex Wimmers, RHP, Ohio State – Wimmers has had an excellent season so far, and most teams are comfortable with the idea that he’s a first round prospect, likely sitting in the middle third of the round. The Reds generally prefer polish with their first pick under this current front office, and Wimmers offers a solid amount of polish with above-average stuff. He profiles similarly to Mike Leake, though with a little more upside and less polish. Previously: 12, 15, 15.
13. Chicago White Sox – Bryce Brentz, OF, Middle Tennessee – I get the feeling that the White Sox are in the midst of trying to rejuvenate the hitting side of their system, even while hearing whispers about their desire for pitching this year. Brentz has convinced some detractors with strong performances this year, though that was before he went down with an ankle injury a couple weeks ago. He offers one of the best bats in the class, though with question marks about his pitch recognition. Previously: 20, 22, 26.
14. Milwaukee Brewers – Christian Colon, SS, Cal State Fullerton – Colon started out cold, but he’s been heating up since my last mock draft. I think the Brewers will find themselves in a unique position to snag a player that was considered a top ten prospect at one point or another, as they pick right at that cusp between elite talent and above-average talent. They have a good relationship with Scott Boras, and I think Colon won’t need ridiculous money to sign. Previously: 4, 2, 24.
15. Texas Rangers – Dylan Covey, RHP, Maranatha HS (CA) – A lot of the lineup for the next five picks depends on how much the Rangers will be willing to spend on a pick that’s not protected by compensation. Covey has had a good spring so far, but his command has been lacking just a tad, and the Rangers have had an increasingly strong Southern California presence over the last few years. This seems like a solid fit, but it depends on Covey’s asking price. Previously: 23, 7, 7.
16. Chicago Cubs – Jesse Hahn, RHP, Virginia Tech – Hahn continues to improve as a starting pitcher, and more and more teams are starting to really view his long-term projection as a starter, too. That can only bode well for Hahn. The Cubs are always an interesting club to project, as they like athletic pitchers and athletic hitters from the college ranks, and Hahn has the type of power arm that could fit well in their system. Previously: 13, 35, 16.
17. Tampa Bay Rays – Josh Sale, OF, Bishop Blanchet HS (WA) – The Rays typically focus on the high school ranks on both the pitching and hitting side for their early picks. They also have a strong presence in the Northwest, so there’s a strong possibility that Sale is high on their board. A lot depends on how the Rays view Sale’s athleticism, which might be below what they want as an organizational philosophy. Sale could easily be off the board before this pick, and I don’t see him lasting past the Red Sox at #20 if he’s healthy and raking come June. Previously: 24, 14, 18.
18. Los Angeles Angels – Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland HS (FL) – Cabrera and teammate Eric Arce haven’t had the best spring, and Arce has gone as far as getting kicked off the team following an arrest. Cabrera hasn’t been hitting as well as expected, though he stills shows all the tools of a powerful corner infielder or right fielder. The Angels have the best Florida area scout in Tom Kotchman, and Cabrera has a long baseball history, and I don’t expect him to fall as far as some have been speculating. Previously: 25, 17, 17.
19. Houston Astros – Kevin Gausman, RHP, Grandview HS (CO) – It really bothers me when I continually plug in the same player in the same slot over a number of mock drafts. However, this pick just makes too much sense. The Astros really like projectable prep arms with good command and plenty of potential, and they also aren’t afraid to find those pitchers in non-traditional baseball states. Gausman fits all of that criteria, and his season is just heating up. Previously: 27, 19, 19.
20. Boston Red Sox – Kaleb Cowart, RHP, Cook County HS (GA) – The Red Sox always have some of the most diverse drafts, and their success rate with draftees is pretty interesting. They have had enormous success with former two-way player Casey Kelly, and Cook brings the most upside of two-way players in this class. He’s starting to look more like a pitching prospect than a hitting prospect, though he’s strong either way. I expect he’ll be off the board in the first round quite easily, and he represents someone who could explode as a prospect while only focusing on pitching. Previously: NR, 21, 21.
21. Minnesota Twins – Nick Castellanos, 3B, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL) – Castellanos continues to be slightly polarizing in the scouting community. Some scouts see him as a premier hitter in this class, while others see him as a slow future first baseman without enough upside at the plate to warrant a solid first round spot. I fall closer to the former argument, as I still see him as a future third baseman with good hitting upside, though he’s no Josh Vitters or Mike Moustakas. Previously: 18, 18, 20.
22. Texas Rangers – Micah Gibbs, C, LSU – I still see the Rangers investing an early pick on a catcher, and if they wait a little on going that direction, they’ll at least make a solid investment in hitting in this draft. Gibbs offers the best defensive polish of any catching prospect in this class, and while he may be viewed as the Jason Castro of this draft, he has enough secondary skills and plus makeup to warrant a first round selection, though he needs to go in the back third. Previously: NR, 49, 12.
23. Florida Marlins – Aaron Sanchez, RHP, Barstow HS (CA) – Predicting a Marlins pick is hard at this point, because they generally stick very close to slot, while also sticking close to the high school side of prospects. It’s hard to gauge signable players right now, but Sanchez is one of the fast risers who’s considered signable and worth a late first round selection. While I personally prefer a few other prep arms above Sanchez, the hype is definitely building. Previously: NR, NR, NR.
24. San Francisco Giants – Brett Eibner, RHP, Arkansas – A lot of the two-way players in this class have started to really succeed on the mount. Eibner represents the top collegiate two-way player, and his pitch-controlled outings for Arkansas have been very successful. Though John Barr went with the prep arm last year, I see him going with an athletic pitcher regardless of classification this year. Eibner represents one of the biggest upsides in the collegiate pitching class. Previously: 28, 43, 43.
25. St. Louis Cardinals – Matt Harvey, RHP, North Carolina – As Matt Harvey continues to answer questions about his checkered collegiate career this year, I continue to look for a draft slot that fits in with his talent. I believe that he’s reached consideration for the back end of the first round, and the Cardinals aren’t afraid to invest in pitching in the draft, especially if they consider that pitcher elite, as they did with Shelby Miller last year. It’s all about Boras and Harvey’s performance for the balance of the season. Previously: NR, NR, 36.
26. Colorado Rockies – Asher Wojciechowski, RHP, The Citadel – I named Wojciechowski as one of the players that just missed my last mock draft, and I don’t think he’ll miss another mock for the rest of the year. To go along with good physical size, Wojciechowski’s stuff has matured, as has his command, which was a big question entering the year. The Rockies have an affinity for college pitching, Tyler Matzek aside. Previously: NR, NR, NR.
27. Philadelphia Phillies – Chevez Clarke, OF, Marietta HS (GA) – The Phillies are going to pick a high school player, and that high school player is going to be athletic with a high ceiling, whether it be on the mound or in the field. Clarke fits into the Phillies’ mold rather well, as he has the potential to turn into a solid five tool player if his power matures as a few scouts have predicted it might. I’m not as high on his power as some, but the rest of his tools aren’t questioned, and he could be the best defender to come out of this class. Previously: NR, 28, 27.
28. Los Angeles Dodgers – Gary Brown, OF, Cal State Fullerton – Speaking of good defenders, Brown could turn out to be the best big leaguer in the entire draft class, depending on how much you value defense. A burner at the plate and in the field, Brown has steadily risen throughout the season, as he’s really matured at the plate and gotten a chance to show what he can do in center field. The Dodgers typically value athleticism and instincts, and Brown shows both. Previously: NR, 46, 46.
29. Los Angeles Angels – Justin O’Conner, SS/C, Cowan HS (IN) – Sadly for a number of scouts, the number of times they’ll be able to see O’Conner catch this spring is less than they expected. That means he’ll really have to show he can continue raking at the level that’s expected, as there will be more doubts about his catching ability than Wil Myers had a year ago. I expect the Angels are one of the teams interested in his catching ability, as they would love to find a long-term solution that is plus defensively. Previously: 32, 30, 23.
30. Los Angeles Angels – Sammy Solis, LHP, San Diego – The Angels once again have a huge number of picks in the early going this year, and they’re bound to go to the collegiate pitching class to fill in with signable arms. Solis offers significant upside from the left side, and if Tyler Kehrer and Pat Corbin taught us anything last year, it’s that the Angels value high-upside left-handed pitchers. Solis does need to show continued improvement and strength this year, but most view him as the better prospect between him and teammate Kyle Blair. Previously: NR, 37, 28.
31. Tampa Bay Rays – Justin Grimm, RHP, Georgia – This is another pick, like Texas’ at #15, that is hard to gauge, as the Rays could go for upside or signability. Grimm fits into both, depending on how they view his long-term potential. If a team can settle down his mechanics, Grimm could slot in as a mid-rotation pitcher in relatively short order, and if the Rays are looking for solid collegiate upside and signability after picking a more expensive pick first, then Grimm could be an option. Previously: NR, 41, 47.
32. New York Yankees – James Paxton, LHP, Grand Prairie AirHogs – The Yankees, as usual, are in a position to pick up the high-upside names with signability questions that fall to the end of the round. Paxton could end up being one of those names. He’s signed with the independent Grand Prairie AirHogs since my last mock, and with a little more certainty, he could be a late first round pick, though Scott Boras complicates things sometimes. Previously: 19, 25, 35.

April 14, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 9 Comments

Players Left Off Mock #3

I’ve received plenty of questions about who just missed being in my mock drafts for the first and supplemental first rounds earlier this week. I’ve purposely kept silent on answering those questions so far, as I want to talk about some of those players in a separate column, which comes now.

Here are a good number of the players that received consideration for my mock draft, along with some information on each. These are in alphabetical order, so don’t draw any conclusions on the order in which they come in the column. Keep an eye on these players, as a lot of them are on their way up.

Drew Cisco, RHP, Wando HS (SC)
Cisco is simply an excellent pitcher. For being so young, he is probably one of the most polished high school pitchers to come along in awhile. He knows what he’s doing on the mound. The reason he’s not higher is that he simply lacks front-line stuff. A number of teams feel that he’s a number four starter at best, despite his plus pitchability. He could easily slide forward a bit, but I think he’s more in line for a mid-second round selection, similar to David Holmberg a year ago.

Todd Cunningham, OF, Jacksonville State
Cunningham has always been seen as a solid college outfielder, and he profiles best as a fringe regular or fourth outfielder. His best attribute is a lack of a glaring weakness, along with a hit tool that was seen as advanced enough to handle good pitching. A good summer on the Cape proved he could handle wood bats, but without much pop. He slumped against fringy pitching over the last few weeks before recovering a little, but the numbers still aren’t good enough for a supplemental first round selection.

Sam Dyson, RHP, South Carolina
I think a bit of a red flag went up when South Carolina chose Blake Cooper over Dyson to be the Friday starter for their team this year, and Dyson has only made that selection look smarter than it did at the beginning of the season. His raw numbers aren’t great, but he’s also been one of the unluckiest pitchers so far, so there’s hope he’ll recover. There’s still the issue of his shoulder and whether it will hold up, making him look more like a second or third rounder.

Mike Foltynewicz, RHP, Minooka Community HS (IL)
Scouts are starting to drool over the raw stuff that “Folty” is putting up, as he has consistently improved velocity and breaking stuff over the last two years, making him a real draft prospect after being a fringe draft prospect before last summer. He absolutely exploded after Perfect Game’s Indoor Pitching/Catching Showcase in Iowa late last month, and a lot of scouts will be hot on the trail when the weather heats up in Illinois. However, he’s still raw, and I’d like to see him consistently show that plus stuff before he moves up.

Kevin Jacob, RHP, Georgia Tech
If you’ve been paying attention closely, you’ve noticed that I haven’t put Jacob in any of my mock drafts, even after he pushed his velocity up to the upper-90s last summer in Alaska. That’s for a few reasons, starting with the fact that relievers are very prone to wild swings in draft stock. I knew that much of Jacob’s value would be based on his spring performance. My reason for holding him back now is what I’ve seen in person, including the disappointment in the scouting community. His raw stuff is way down, as he only sits in the low-90s, touching 94, and his command isn’t sharp. With his Boras commitment, he could even be back at Tech next year.

Tyrell Jenkins, RHP, Henderson HS (TX)
I hope you’re hearing this name more and more at other draft sites, as this is one of the bigger helium names so far this spring. Jenkins is a tall, lanky, and very athletic pitcher that has simply exploded this spring, which wasn’t necessarily expected. He’s now drawing much more interest, as his raw stuff is better and scouts think he might have what it takes to jump right into pro ball and succeed. He’s still very raw, though, which is why he’s still a second round arm to me.

Barret Loux, RHP, Texas A&M
Notice the spelling of Barret. B-a-r-r-e-t. Spell it right now, because you’ll need to when he’s in the Major Leagues. Loux was someone I identified as a possible helium candidate entering the spring, as his raw stuff is number two starter caliber, but I worried about his durability, as he’s coming off minor elbow surgery last year. He’s answered some questions this year, and I might be underestimating him, as he could easily be a supplemental first round arm in the mold of Garrett Richards.

Kyle Parker, OF, Clemson
Parker has gotten a lot of national interest, mainly because he even brings along the interest of college football fans. Clemson’s quarterback in his down time (yes, I said it), he brings premium athleticism in a class very short on impact college bats. He’s also simply hitting the ball when others aren’t, and he’s on his way up. However, there are still questions about how much he wants to play football in the fall, which will impact his signability, making him miss my mock.

Brian Ragira, OF, Martin HS (TX)
I know Ragira is a favorite in the internet draft community, as he has all the tools to be an impact outfielder. He’s a solid runner, has a plus arm, and has a true middle of the order bat that has projection left for strength and power. However, let me remind you that Ragira has a Stanford commitment. That may not mean much to you, but that’s top of the line when it comes to signing a player away from a college commitment. Unless a team sees him as a surefire first round talent, he could drop like Jake Stewart did last year.

A.J. Vanegas, RHP, Redwood Christian HS (CA)
Vanegas had an up-and-down summer, but I think I oversold him when I put him in the back of my original first round mock and my last mock for the 2010 draft. He has solid stuff and a projectable build, but there’s worry that he won’t be able to maintain plus stuff throughout a full outing. Like Ragira, he also has a Stanford commitment that could be very expensive to buy him away from, and I see him as a solid second round prospect anyway.

Drew Vettleson, OF, Central Kitsap HS (WA)
Vettleson became a bit of a circus show as a switch-pitcher with solid stuff, though he doesn’t profile as a pitcher at the next level. Rather, he has the tools to be an excellent corner outfielder with the arm and range to handle right field. He’s a solid hitter with some projection, but my worry is that he can’t hit for enough power to hold down a corner outfield spot, as he’s more of an average hitter when he’s going right. He almost has to force power, so that makes him a second round prospect to me.

Taijuan Walker, RHP, Yucaipa HS (CA)
This is due simply to rawness, as I still like what I hear about Walker’s projectability and current stuff. He has come out of the gate a little more slowly than the other elite pitching prospects, and a number of scouts have attributed that slow start to the fact that he’s fresh off a basketball season in which he was an excellent performer, as well. Walker offers some of the best upside in this class, but until he starts reaching some consistency, I have him closer to the second round.

Austin Wates, OF/1B, Virginia Tech
Most scouts envision Wates as a toolsy center fielder, but Virginia Tech doesn’t seem to get that message. The Hokies use him everywhere possible, including plenty of first base time, where his athleticism is pretty much wasted. However, Wates does have some of the best overall tools in the college hitting class, which is lacking this year, so he’s moved up a lot, but he needs to prove he can handle center field before I move him higher than the second round.

Asher Wojciechowski, RHP, The Citadel
I think I struck a nerve a couple weeks ago when I pointed out Wojciechowski’s outing against Western Carolina lasted 138 pitches. Aside from the fact that this wasn’t too good for his arm that early in the season, the reason he went so deep is because his stuff is downright devastating this year. He has improved his raw stuff to the point that he’s seen as a possible number two or three starter, but since he doesn’t face top competition, he might suffer in terms of draft stock.

Christian Yelich, 1B, Westlake HS (CA)
Yelich has come out of the gate on fire, and he’s starting to be considered as one of the best first base prospects in this year’s class. He has a good frame, along with power and strength projection, and he’s really squaring balls this spring. Some teams may look at Yelich as a possible left fielder, too, as he’s a solid-average runner with a fringe-average arm, and I could see him as a possible Major League regular with power development. He’s still a second round player to me, but he’s on the rise.

March 26, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 10 Comments

A Note on Mock Drafting

Mock drafts are a little controversial this early in the season. I actually think that’s a bit of an understatement. They even cause anger and irrationality.

There’s a couple of ways that comes to pass. First, there’s the fan reaction to mock drafts. When fans see that their team has mock drafted a player they don’t like, the reaction can be strong, to say the least. If I had a nickel for every time a reader got mad at me for not mock drafting the player they like to their team, I’d be one rich man. I also get fun responses that tell me how stupid I am for valuing player X over player Y, because clearly player Y is better. Then they tell me they’ll never read my stuff again. This kind of reaction is always interesting, and it’s more common than you think.

The second way that mock drafts anger a community is how they anger a lot of prospect writers, especially early in the season. If you were to ask the various solid prospect writers out there who is projected to go where, you’ll get a variety of answers mostly based around “IT’S TOO EARLY TO TELL! LET THE PLAYERS PLAY!” My response to this is that it’s obvious that it’s too early to tell. Teams haven’t started making decisions about players yet, so of course my mock drafts aren’t to be taken as signs that teams are considering that player directly. It’s more of an exercise of fun and draft stock rather than connecting specific players to specific teams. Taking that too seriously is a flaw, and treating readers like they’re stupid for asking is wrong and defeats the purpose of writing in general.

I write about the draft. Therefore, I pay attention to what team picks in what position. Can I tell you who the Oakland A’s are zeroing in on for the #10 pick yet? No. Can I tell you what players are top ten caliber players and that fit the drafting history of the A’s? Yes. That’s what my mock drafts are about at this time in the year. I’m not naïve. I don’t think I can take a tiny bit of information from a scout and turn it into something bigger, something that says that a team wants player X more than player Y. There’s still two and a half months until the draft, and most teams don’t even sit down to make those decisions until the week before the draft. I simply take the draft stock of players, combine it with the trends I discussed in the draft previews for each team, and then I put together the mock draft. It’s that simple. Nothing more, nothing less. Readers like it (for the most part), and I love doing it. It makes me work, and it makes me think about where players are valued. The more information that is available and thinking that is done, the better.

I guess this is what some would call a rant. It might be. I’m just tired of seeing numerous writers around the baseball world answering questions from readers in a way that’s demeaning and doesn’t answer their question at all. If I were to receive a question that asks me who the Rangers might pick for the #15 pick, I shouldn’t say “THAT’S THE WRONG QUESTION! IT’S TOO EARLY!” I should answer it in a way that explains what philosophy they likely have behind the pick, list a few players that fit that philosophy, then qualify it by saying that it’s a little early to tell who they really want, but that I will do my best to answer their question. That’s my job. I like answering questions, and I encourage them, even if they aren’t the most educated questions. Fan focus on the draft at all is fairly new, and I don’t expect every fan to know the thinking behind it or the timeframe in which teams make decisions. That’s too much to expect. The reader I want is the reader that is curious and asks questions, even if the answers are simple and other writers think it was too stupid to ask. I’d even welcome a reader that’s never watched a baseball game. How else are we going to grow the sport?

We need to quit treating scouting, the draft, and baseball in general like it’s a sport that deserves to be shrouded in secrecy and caution. Scouts, players, and executives are people, and so are writers and readers. I don’t take this writing gig so seriously that I can’t have fun with what I like to write about. I also don’t take myself so seriously as to think I have all the answers. I write about baseball because I love baseball. It’s deep in the core of who I am. Watching amateur players is a passion of mine, and I’ve just been lucky enough to develop that into something more. Mock drafts are one way in which I drive interest in the draft, even if it is too early to connect players to teams. I want more people to read about the draft and the players that are eligible. That’s all.

Thanks for taking the time to read this rant. If you have thoughts on the subject, feel free to talk it up in the comments.

March 24, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 9 Comments

2010 Mock Draft #3 – Supplemental First Round

Here is the continuation of my third mock draft series, focusing on the supplemental first round today.

33. Houston Astros – Cameron Bedrosian, RHP, East Coweta HS (GA) – Bedrosian is a possible late first round prospect, and I think a lot of his perceived value has to do with his signability. He has an LSU scholarship, which can be a big hurdle, so the scouts that believe he’s more signable will take a strong run at him, as he definitely has the makings of a solid pro pitcher. Previously: #32.
34. Toronto Blue Jays – Kris Bryant, 3B, Bonanza HS (NV) – Bryant still has one of the most powerful bats in the entire class, including college hitters, and the big question is whether he can hit with wood. However, there are plenty of teams out there that believe they can help Bryant transition to wood, while keeping his 40 homer potential. Previously: #44.
35. Atlanta Braves – James Paxton, LHP, Kentucky – Though I illustrated that the Braves simply don’t spend much in the draft, I expect them to spend late first round money on their first pick if the right player is available. Paxton’s pretty much in limbo, but I can see a team like the Braves that value projection from the left side picking him no matter what he does this spring, granted that he’s healthy. Previously: #25.
36. Boston Red Sox – Matt Harvey, RHP, North Carolina – Welcome back to the conversation Matt Harvey. Harvey has come back with a vengeance this spring, and it’s only my conservative nature that keeps him out of the natural first round right now. His Scott Boras connection will haunt him no matter what he does, but he could be moving up fast if he continues to dominate on Fridays. Previously: NR.
37. Los Angeles Angels – Chad Bettis, RHP, Texas Tech – The Angels have a history of taking college pitchers with excellent natural stuff that are projected as relievers by a number of organizations. That was Garrett Richards a year ago, and Bettis is a comparable pitcher this year. He has done well in a starting role at Texas Tech, though he’s been more hittable than expected. Previously: #26.
38. Toronto Blue Jays – Kyle Blair, RHP, San Diego – I expect the Blue Jays to fill in with some upside college arms and bats in the supplemental first round, perhaps only to keep their expenses down when they more picks than I can count. Blair still has the mechanical and command issues he’s always had, but he has the upside of a number two starter, making this more believable. Previously: #40.
39. Boston Red Sox – Jarrett Parker, OF, Virginia – Parker fits into the Boston mold for drafting, as he has both the athleticism to fit in their system, as well as the pop in his bat to believe that he could move quickly through the system. He also should be signable, which might be important in the early picks if their first round pick is worth more than slot. Previously: #38.
40. Los Angeles Angels – Peter Tago, RHP, Dana Hills HS (CA) – Tago’s not the most projectable arm in the class, but he might be one of the most advanced. The Angels have a ton of picks for the second year in a row, and I see them going for one solid prep arm in the supplemental first round, similar to them nabbing Tyler Skaggs a year ago. Tago fits that bill. Previously: #34.
41. Toronto Blue Jays – Michael Choice, OF, UT Arlington – Choice has come out on fire this spring, and I found myself considering him for the back of the first round. However, his lack of elite-level tools beyond the power in his bat makes him more of a supplemental first round choice. The Blue Jays will be looking for power arms and power bats. Previously: #50.
42. Tampa Bay Rays – Deandre Smelter, RHP, Tattnall Square Academy (GA) – Smelter has an elite arm, but like Stetson Allie, he lacks the refinement and rotation potential in most teams’ eyes. He projects as more of a closer, and the fact that he throws a splitter at such a young age worries some scouts with regards to the arm action of a split. He’s still a solid pick at this level. Previously: #33.
43. Seattle Mariners – Brett Eibner, RHP, Arkansas – This will be the Mariners’ first pick, and it will be interesting to see how much they budget for this pick, since there could be a few prep names that are elite, but fall due to signability issues. Eibner has pitched well in limited innings as a Sunday starter for Arkansas, and I see him as a solid mid-rotation option if a team prefers him on the mound. Previously: #43.
44. Detroit Tigers – Reggie Golden, OF, Wetumpka HS (AL) – This is the Tigers’ first pick, and like the Mariners, it will be interesting to see how much they budget for this pick. They favor prep bats with athleticism and pop and Golden fits that mold quite well here. His stock isn’t really changing so far, but this is simply a decent fit. Previously: NR.
45. Texas Rangers – Jedd Gyorko, 2B, West Virginia – I expect the Rangers to go after a few more bats in the draft this year when compared to their recent history. Gyorko is easily the most refined bat available here, and while he’s limited defensively, there are a few teams that think they can make him an average defender at second with above-average hitting for the position. Previously: #36.
46. St. Louis Cardinals – Gary Brown, OF, Cal State Fullerton – Brown has been on fire this spring, and I’m becoming more comfortable with having him up this high. He’s still pretty much a two-dimensional player, offering a good hit tool and plus-plus speed, but some teams may like his ability to becoming a leadoff hitter in short order. Previously: #46.
47. Colorado Rockies – Justin Grimm, RHP, Georgia – One of the things I took away when I saw Justin Grimm a few weeks ago was that he simply lacked the ability, present or future, to have good command. However, the talented arm is there, and he could become a mid-rotation starter on pure stuff alone. He’s going to be a draft prospect as long as he stays healthy. Previously: #41.
48. Detroit Tigers – Rick Hague, SS, Rice – Hague’s problems with breaking balls are catching up to him, but he still is showing his prospect value with the glove. He’s getting steadily better with his glove, and his bat still has starter upside, so he’s still an early round prospect despite some ugly early numbers. I still like him more than most. Previously: #24.
49. Texas Rangers – Bryan Morgado, LHP, Tennessee – Morgado is the left-handed version of Grimm, as he simply lacks the ability to command his pitches. However, he offers above-average stuff from the left-hand side, and a team that sees him as an easy sign with mid-rotation upside will draft him earlier than his third round draft slot last year. Previously: #39.
50. St. Louis Cardinals – Marcus Littlewood, SS, Pineview HS (UT) – I have a strong feeling that the Cardinals are looking for a potential early-round middle infielder, and Littlewood offers good upside. It will be interesting to see how teams scout him, as the competition he faces isn’t good enough to really compare him. Most of his value will be from his summer performances. Previously: NR.

March 23, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 11 Comments

2010 Mock Draft #3 – First Round

Here is the start of the third installment of my mock draft series. The first round starts today, followed by the following rounds beginning tomorrow.

1. Washington Nationals – Bryce Harper, C, CC of Southern Nevada – This is increasingly becoming a no-brainer as Harper puts his tools into action on the field. The cost for Harper might be becoming increasingly expensive, but there would be no excuse for passing over what I consider the top talent in the draft by a solid margin. Previously: #1.
2. Pittsburgh Pirates – Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech – I know this one will bring plenty of wailing from the Pittsburgh community, but I simply don’t see any connection between the Pirates and Jameson Taillon. With Anthony Ranaudo out right now, McGuire has stepped up to become the best draft-eligible college pitcher in the country, and he offers solid stuff with some projection remaining. Previously: #10.
3. Baltimore Orioles – Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands HS (TX) – If Taillon does fall into the laps of the Orioles, this will be another no-brainer type of selection. There was a little bit of worry a couple of weeks ago when Taillon’s velocity dipped a bit in a start, but it was back up in his most recent start. Cost is the big factor here, considering Taillon might be the most expensive prep arm ever. Previously: #3.
4. Kansas City Royals – Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Ole Miss – I have just been extremely impressed with Pomeranz this spring, as he’s really taken another step forward. There are still some slight concerns about his motion, but with #2 potential from the left side, it will be hard seeing him drop out of the top ten if he’s healthy and dealing. Previously: #16.
5. Cleveland Indians – Chris Sale, LHP, Florida Gulf Coast – Right behind Pomeranz is Sale, especially since Sale is considered the more signable of the two. The much-anticipated matchup of Sale and the U. of Miami hitters in a midweek game was rained out, but Sale has flat-out dominated the competition so far, though that’s to be expected. Previously: #12.
6. Arizona Diamondbacks – A.J. Cole, RHP, Oviedo HS (FL) – This is reminiscent of the Diamondbacks’ pick of Jarrod Parker a few years ago. Cole hasn’t been as heralded this spring, but he still offers the best projection of anyone in the class and one of the few arms that project to be a true number one starter. Arizona may have their pick of the best prep arms behind Taillon. Previously: #6.
7. New York Mets – Dylan Covey, RHP, Maranatha HS (CA) – Covey has been solid so far in early season action, and his fastball-curveball combination is considered the most polished pair of offerings in the prep class. He offers #2/3 upside with better current polish than pretty much anyone in the prep class, and he shouldn’t be as expensive as some of the other names. Previously: #7.
8. Houston Astros – Zack Cox, 3B, Arkansas – I had Cox here in my first mock draft for 2010, and even though he doesn’t fit Bobby Heck’s traditional mold for up-the-middle athleticism, he’s emerged as one of the few available impact bats in the college class. I expect this pick to be a hitter as it stands, so Cox is simply the best available hitter here for an affordable price. Previously: #5.
9. San Diego Padres – Manny Machado, SS, Brito HS (FL) – Machado is one of those players that is hard to gauge, because so much of his value is wrapped up in projectability, yet he still produces on the field in a body that doesn’t offer many of the same attributes that scouts project him to have. If he can stick at short, he’s the best middle infielder available in this class, and the Padres’ new scouting focus should lead to him for numerous reasons. Previously: #11.
10. Oakland Athletics – Austin Wilson, OF, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA) – The rumors of the Athletics being heavy on Donavan Tate last year lead me to believe that they’re really looking for impact center field talent in the prep ranks if the right player is available. They’ve proven they have the budget, and Wilson, fully recovered from a back ailment in the fall, could be an impact player there if he can prove he’s a long-term center fielder. Previously: #13.
11. Toronto Blue Jays – Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley HS (FL) – Whitson’s not necessarily behind either Cole or Covey right now, but this is the de facto order that those pitchers come in at this moment. Whitson offers as much upside as anyone, though there’s a tad more risk here than in his counterparts. The Blue Jays are likely looking to build with more high school talent, so this is a good fit. Previously: #9.
12. Cincinnati Reds – Micah Gibbs, C, LSU – I know a lot of Red fans would be upset with this pick, but I think this is a solid fit. The Reds generally push for slot with their early pick, and they’re without an impact catcher throughout, so this is a similar situation to the Astros when they picked Jason Castro in 2008. Gibbs has had a great start to his junior year. Previously: #49.
13. Chicago White Sox – Brandon Workman, RHP, Texas – Workman’s transition to the rotation at Texas has been an unqualified success, and the questions about his ability to start are slowly starting to fade away. He should be an affordable arm with good upside and a solid pitch mix, and the White Sox are one of a few possibilities for his landing. Previously: #31.
14. Milwaukee Brewers – Anthony Ranaudo, RHP, LSU – Say what you want about Ranaudo getting a mulligan so far, but with all the missed time, there is plenty of concern about his durability, one of his better attributes before his injury. He needs to come back and pitch well, especially with his newfound Scott Boras connection. The Brewers are one of a few landing spots on the way down. Previously: #4.
15. Texas Rangers – Alex Wimmers, RHP, Ohio State – Wimmers has been excellent in his first five stars, and he’s really setting himself up to be a solid first round candidate for June. He’s always been in the conversation, but the consensus was that he had to continue to blow away the weak competition he faces to stay in the first round. The Rangers need a pretty signable pick here, and Wimmers would be a solid addition to a farm system deep in arms. Previously: #15.
16. Chicago Cubs – Jesse Hahn, RHP, Virginia Tech – The Cubs have a pretty solid history of taking college arms that have experience closing and turning them into starters, though Hahn has already made the transition this year, and it’s been very successful. He’s still learning to pitch, but his raw stuff and returns early this year have been great. Previously: #35.
17. Tampa Bay Rays – Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland HS (FL) – I had Cabrera here last time, and it still continues to make sense. Cabrera has the sort of elite power potential that teams look for, but he still has to answer how his age relative to his competition affects his performance. As it is, though, he could be a power-hitting right fielder for years to come. Previously: #17.
18. Los Angeles Angels – Josh Sale, OF, Bishop Blanchet HS (WA) – This one was tough, because the Angels don’t have a long history of taking corner outfielders, especially ones that are viewed as somewhat questionable on the athletic side of evaluation. However, Sale’s bat is just so good that it compares favorably with Hank Conger, the all-bat prep catcher taken by the Angels a few years ago. Previously: #14.
19. Houston Astros – Kevin Gausman, RHP, Grandview HS (CO) – It’s hard to change this pick from the last mock draft I did, simply because Gausman just started his season this past weekend. The Astros love the projectable workout arms, and Gausman certainly fits those criteria. He’s a definite first round option for a lot of teams, and the question is how much his LSU commitment is worth. Previously: #19.
20. Boston Red Sox – Nick Castellanos, 3B, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL) – Castellanos has come out on fire this year, and there’s plenty of reason to believe that he’s a legitimate first round candidate. He put on shows on the showcase circuit over the summer, and the main question he has to answer is whether he can stick at third base. The Red Sox like power bats or athletic bats, and Castellanos fits in category number one. Previously: #18.
21. Minnesota Twins – Kaleb Cowart, RHP, Cook County HS (GA) – I still go back and forth on Cowart, just as a number of scouts are going back and forth. Cowart has the pure talent to go in the first round as either a bat or an arm, but the early returns on his arm are quite good. If a team believes he has Ethan Martin potential with the arm, he is a lock for the first round. Previously: #21.
22. Texas Rangers – Yasmani Grandal, C, Miami – Most that know my evaluation of Grandal believe I have a bias against him. However, he’s come out and answered most of my questions so far, hitting well, playing solid defense, and improving his stock. The Rangers still need catching in their system, and Grandal is fighting with Gibbs for the place of the top collegiate catcher. Previously: NR.
23. Florida Marlins – Justin O’Conner, SS/C, Cowan HS (IN) – O’Conner is in a similar situation to Gausman in that he gets started so late that any changes in mock drafts are more about players around him than his play. If the catching transition is successful, I see this as a solid fit, and even if it isn’t, O’Conner’s the best bat to stay at shortstop among the top prep shortstops in the class. Previously: #30.
24. San Francisco Giants – Christian Colon, SS, Cal State Fullerton – O how the mighty have fallen. Colon has come out extremely flat so far this year, and it brings back bad memories of Grant Green’s rough start for USC last year. However, Colon doesn’t have the tools to fall back on that Green has, so the fall is faster and deeper. Previously: #2.
25. St. Louis Cardinals – Stetson Allie, RHP, St. Edwards HS (OH) – Another cold-weather player, Allie still offers the most electric arm in the entire class, Taillon included. However, the lack of refinement and probable bullpen destination makes Allie a more questionable first round candidate, and I seriously considered dropping him out altogether. Previously: #20.
26. Colorado Rockies – Bryce Brentz, OF, Middle Tennessee State – Scouts flocked to see Brentz play a midweek matchup against Tennessee a few weeks ago, and they were treated to a nice display of the power of Brentz. However, with the concerns of his competition still being out there, he needs to put up the video game numbers of 2009 to be an early pick. Previously: #22.
27. Philadelphia Phillies – Chevez Clarke, OF, Marietta HS (GA) – Clarke still has some problems with pitch recognition, but he is a much more improved player than who he was last summer. He still has the excellent athleticism that the Phillies seek, but he also offers better refinement and effort, and he just looks more mature. Previously: #28.
28. Los Angeles Dodgers – Sammy Solis, LHP, San Diego – Whereas teammate Kyle Blair has slowly started dropping off the radar as a first round candidate, Solis has stepped up after missing last year with a back injury. The Dodgers love their left-handed arms, and I have to think that Solis is right near the top of the board, being a Southern Californian and having a great comeback season. Previously: #37.
29. Los Angeles Angels – Stefan Sabol, C, Aliso Niguel HS (CA) – This one is getting tougher, because the early reads on Sabol’s catching continue to be mixed. His athleticism is still never in question, so whichever team picks him has the alternative of developing him as a premium defender in the outfield. However, if the Angels pick him this early, it will be as a catcher. Previously: #23.
30. Los Angeles Angels – Scott Frazier, RHP, Upland HS (CA) – Frazier has jumped on to the early round scene with an excellent early round of games, including a no-hitter that featured plus stuff and results. He offers premium projection and a big frame, both things the Angels love, and the most important thing in this pick is that they get upside with signability, and Frazier is expected to be signable for slot this early. Previously: NR.
31. Tampa Bay Rays – Robbie Aviles, RHP, Suffern HS (NY) – There is still no conclusive read on how Aviles’ Florida commitment affects his signability, and that will play a big part in his draft position come June. Being a cold-weather pitcher, teams are going to have limited looks on him, so his signability is a big factor, since he’ll be a little behind as it is. He’s quite projectable, though, and the Rays could get premium talent for their buck here, since this pick is compensation for not signing LeVon Washington a year ago. Previously: #42.
32. New York Yankees – LeVon Washington, OF, Chipola JC (FL) – I defended Washington early on when scouts were saying that he lost a step, but it’s gotten far enough into the season for me to start worrying. His plus-plus elite speed just isn’t there right now, and he doesn’t offer enough other tools to be a top ten or even top twenty pick. I do still like his bat, but this is as far as I can go. Previously: #8.

Stay tuned for the next part tomorrow, when I’ll give you my latest supplemental first round mock draft.

March 22, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 30 Comments

2010 Mock Draft #2 Supplemental Round

Here’s my supplemental first round mock, assuming that Rod Barajas signs a ML deal with another club before the draft:

33. Houston Astros – DeAndre Smelter, RHP, Tattnall Square Academy (GA) – Having drafted LeVon Washington and Kevin Gausman before this, Smelter fits well into the Astros’ current philosophy of draft workout arms, following in the footsteps of Jordan Lyles and Tanner Bushue. Smelter has huge arm strength, and his big question mark is whether he has the secondary stuff or the endurance to be a starter. His arm strength is unquestioned, though, and perhaps only Stetson Allie has a better pure arm in this class. Previously: NR.

34. Toronto Blue Jays – Peter Tago, RHP, Dana Hills HS (CA) – Tago is currently on that edge between first round pitcher and unpredictable prep arm. He still fits into the category of skinny, projectable prep arm, but his command is quite good. Having already pegged the Blue Jays to pick Manny Machado, a prep arm fits here well. Tago has a high ceiling, and with the regime change in Toronto, it looks like they see the need in picking these kinds of arms, along with a mix of college arms. Previously: NR.

35. Atlanta Braves – Jesse Hahn, RHP, Virginia Tech – The Braves, while traditionally thought of as pure tools developers, have more recently gone to a mix between college and junior college players. With this being the Braves’ first pick in the draft, I think the Braves will try to find a relatively high-upside college arm, and Hahn fits that bill. Hahn has a big arm, but a reliever stigma, and he’ll have to work to keep that away this spring. Previously: #13.

36. Boston Red Sox – Jedd Gyorko, 2B, West Virginia – The man without a defensive home continues to show up as a solid all-around hitter. I have the Red Sox going with a prep arm in Stetson Allie earlier in the first round, so I would expect a more conservative pick here. Gyorko looks like he’ll be a solid MLB hitter without much work, and while his defense is generally bad in the infield, he might be able to work himself into a solid contributor. Previously: #29.

37. Los Angeles Angels – Sammy Solis, LHP, San Diego – Much like last year, I expect the Angels to use a fair number of their multiple early picks on arms with good upside. That yielded Tyler Skaggs, Garrett Richards, Tyler Kehrer, and Pat Corbin a year ago. Solis is a guy with an injury history that doesn’t involve his left arm, and he stands to be a candidate to move up quickly from here with a good spring. This would be a pick that makes a lot of sense. Previously: NR.

38. Toronto Blue Jays – Jarrett Parker, OF, Virginia – Parker had a rough time on the Cape over the summer, and while the tools are all there, there’s still a good amount of doubt about his future as an MLB regular. Having projected the Blue Jays to go with two preps already, I figure the Blue Jays will want a little stability with a college hitter, though one with good tools and upside. Parker fits well into a system that needs a little more depth. Previously: NR.

39. Boston Red Sox – Bryan Morgado, LHP, Tennessee – Morgado’s someone I had as a possibility for the Rays at their #31 slot in my last mock, and I still think he’s more of a supplemental first round arm. He proved what he can do on the Cape last summer, and while the White Sox wouldn’t pony up the money for him as their third-rounder a year ago, he’s much more signable as a 22 year old junior this year. The Red Sox will find good value in him at this slot. Previously: #31.

40. Los Angeles Angels – Kyle Blair, RHP, San Diego – It wasn’t until after I put together this section of the mock that I found that I had the Angels taking teammates with back-to-back picks. However, I don’t think anyone would blame the Angels for picking these two high-upside college arms. Blair has big-time stuff, but can’t seem to stay healthy long enough to put it together. I’m a little afraid he’s headed down the Adam Miller path, but he still has enough talent to warrant this spot. Previously: #26.

41. Toronto Blue Jays – Justin Grimm, RHP, Georgia – Whereas Jarrett Parker is the collegiate anchor to weigh in with the high upside of Manny Machado, Grimm is my alternative to Peter Tago for the Blue Jays. Grimm is projected to go somewhere from the late first round to the early second, and he’s a solid collegiate arm with relatively good upside, something the Blue Jays will be looking for in these picks. He could become a mid first-rounder with a good spring. Previously: NR.

42. Tampa Bay Rays – Robbie Aviles, RHP, Suffern HS (NY) – I played around Aviles going to the nearby Yankees at the end of the first round, but I don’t get the feeling that scouts are as secure in their feelings about Aviles as they are about Cam Bedrosian. Aviles has a Florida commitment that shouldn’t be too hard to get through, and I think the Rays will be looking to balance price and talent with their #31 and #42 picks. Aviles fits that well. Previously: NR.

43. Seattle Mariners – Brett Eibner, RHP/OF, Arkansas – Eibner still stands out as the best two-way collegiate talent in the 2010 draft, and he could honestly go either way depending on his spring. A comparable player from a year ago, Blake Smith, was picked as an outfielder, while the pitching counterpart, Aaron Miller, showed enough to warrant comparable selection slot as a pitcher. The Mariners drafted James Jones as an outfielder a year ago over pitching for the upside, and that could be the case here. Previously: #28.

44. Detroit Tigers – Kris Bryant, 3B, Bonanza HS (NV) – The Tigers don’t seem to shy away from hitting projects, as we’ve seen the likes of Cale Iorg, and more recently Daniel Fields, be drafted and given big bucks by the same front office. Bryant’s gotten multiple reviews as a possible metal bat hitter, though with humongous raw power that comes closest to Bryce Harper in this class. If he can prove he can handle third base at the pro level, it helps his stock. Previously: #11.

45. Texas Rangers – Taijuan Walker, RHP, Yucaipa HS (CA) – The Rangers, despite coming under new ownership before the draft, will likely be somewhat conservative with their early-round spending this year. After pegging them with a collegiate arm and bat in the first round, I have them going with a signable high-upside prep arm in the supplemental first with Walker. He doesn’t currently have a college commitment, and all signs point to him being signable. Previously: NR.

46. St. Louis Cardinals – Gary Brown, OF, Cal State Fullerton – When I interviewed Daniel Renken a few months ago, his description of Brown pretty much hit the nail on the head when it comes to how the scouting community seems to think of him. He’s fast. Very, very fast. He has the tools to be a good leadoff hitter, and I suspect he’ll be taken in the late supplemental first round to the early third round range. Previously: NR.

47. Colorado Rockies – Todd Cunningham, OF, Jacksonville State – While a good number of scouts think of Cunningham as the definition of a ‘tweener, there’s enough good things to like about him that should lead to an early selection for him. The kid can flat-out hit, and I suspect that a team like Colorado, which valued Tim Wheeler last June, will pounce on him in the middle of the first day. Previously: NR.

48. Detroit Tigers – Sam Dyson, RHP, South Carolina – Dyson turned down the A’s as their tenth-rounder last June, and while I’m sure he passed up good money, he’s probably in line for a good payday if he stays healthy this spring. He has an elite arm, but his shoulder injury history seems to spook teams more than most. If he can prove he can stay healthy with a big workload, while also improving his on-the-field performance this spring, he’ll be gone before this. Previously: NR.

49. Texas Rangers – Micah Gibbs, C, LSU – While the Rangers’ system is known for its depth and top elite talent, one piece that’s missing is good catching. While I don’t condone drafting for need, this is a pick that makes sense on multiple levels, also including Gibbs’ signability and talent. A switch-hitter, Gibbs projects to be a solid everyday catcher at the big league level, similar to Jason Castro in 2008. With a productive spring, Gibbs could find himself in the first round. Previously: NR.

50. St. Louis Cardinals – Michael Choice, OF, UT-Arlington – Choice played with Team USA over the summer, and while I’m not the biggest fan of his play, it seems his stock is rising. It sounds a lot like Kentrail Davis a year ago. He’s probably stuck in left field as a pro, so much depends on his huge raw power. He could easily find himself in the first round or the fifth, depending on if his game production numbers stay up and scouts show less worry about his swing plane. Previously: NR.

February 2, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 3 Comments

2010 Mock Draft #2

Here’s the first spring edition of my 2010 mock:

1. Washington Nationals – Bryce Harper, C, CC of Southern Nevada – I’ve seen a couple of inferences that Harper has somehow fallen off from the number one slot, most recently here by BP’s Kevin Goldstein. I just don’t see it happening. Harper’s got the best tools for stardom by a landslide in this class, and the money shouldn’t be an issue too big to overcome. He’s going to mash as a 17 year-old JUCO player this spring, and the doubters will be silenced. Previously: #1.

2. Pittsburgh Pirates – Christian Colon, SS, Cal State Fullerton – For all the talk of Jameson Taillon and Anthony Ranaudo, I see the Pirates sticking to their 2009 script, when there wasn’t a clear-cut best player available to them at their selection. All things being equal, they’ll choose the hitter, and Colon’s the best on the board here. There’s a method to their madness, as they were able to add quality arms in Victor Black, Brooks Pounders, Zack Dodson, Zack Von Rosenberg, Trent Stevenson, Colton Cain, and Jeff Inman, while still picking Tony Sanchez a year ago. Previously: #4.

3. Baltimore Orioles – Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands HS (TX) – Taillon’s the clear-cut best prep arm at this point in time, and if he drops here, I don’t see the Orioles passing him up. To most teams, Taillon would be the best player available after Harper and Colon, with Ranaudo being the other option. I see the Orioles opting for the higher-ceiling arm and picking Taillon. Beware the Rice commitment, though. He could end up as Gerrit Cole version 2010. Previously: #3.

4. Kansas City Royals – Anthony Ranaudo, RHP, LSU – Ranaudo’s made a bold move by selecting Scott Boras as his advisor heading into his draft year. Having attached his name to Boras means he needs to have a dominating junior year to sit this high in the draft, where teams know they’ll be extorted for every penny by Boras. Don’t get me wrong, Boras is only doing his job, but the pressure now on Ranaudo to perform to the high expectations is magnified. I think he’ll do just fine, and the Royals will have no qualms about paying him. Previously: #2.

5. Cleveland Indians – Zack Cox, 3B, Arkansas – This is a tough pick to handicap. The Indians went with a clear best player available pick in 2009 with Alex White, and they paid over slot for the first time in a few years. Some might argue that Cox is just more of the Beau Mills/Lonnie Chisenhall picking from the past, but Cox has the highest upside of any college bat in this draft. His price tag may be a bit high as a draft-eligible sophomore, but I don’t expect him to get much more than slot at such a high pick. This pick could be similar in fashion to picks by Pittsburgh and Baltimore from a year ago, saving some budget money for later rounds. Previously: #8.

6. Arizona Diamondbacks – A.J. Cole, RHP, Oviedo HS (FL) – The Diamondbacks haven’t chosen a high school pitcher in the top round (or supplemental round) since Jarrod Parker in 2007, and Cole’s arm is in that same category. Picking this high, Arizona has to hit with this pick, as they don’t have any extra picks to fall back on this year. They need high-ceiling arms in their system, and Cole’s got a special one. I haven’t heard anything about Cole’s signability yet, so this is definitely a constantly changing pick. Previously: #6.

7. New York Mets – Dylan Covey, RHP, Maranatha HS (CA) – As explained in my bits and pieces entry, Covey’s stock has been on the upswing. After missing time this summer with a minor injury, Covey came back strong in the fall, and he’s in the conversation with Taillon and Cole for best prep arm in the 2010 class. The Mets have gone with some prep arms in the past, and their top pick from a year ago was prep lefty Steven Matz. If Covey’s spring is as good as his fall, he’s definitely a top ten pick if signable. Previously: #23.

8. Houston Astros – LeVon Washington, OF, Chipola JC (FL) – Washington’s another player on the rise, as he’s got early first-round potential in both center field and at second base. He’s still got a great bat and excellent speed, and there’s thought that he could be a dominant leadoff hitter in a relatively short period of time when compared to other bats so young. He’s still got the Boras factor, but the word is that his asking price wasn’t ridiculous at all when the Rays failed to sign him in August. Their mistake. Previously: #14.

9. San Diego Padres – Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley HS (FL) – Regime change is always interesting when putting together mock drafts. However, it’s becoming clear that this regime will depart from the previous one when it comes to the draft. Expect more prep arms and more upside, though at the cost of risk. Whitson has an elite arm, and if his asking price is reasonable, he’s also a top ten to fifteen level talent. The top four prep arms in general are excellent compared to most years, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see a situation like this one where they are all picked in the first nine picks. Previously: #7.

10. Oakland Athletics – Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech – No matter who I slot here, if it’s a college player, I always get the complaints that the A’s don’t pick “safe” college guys anymore. However, McGuire has way more upside than your typical college righty, and with a great spring, he won’t fall this far. This is no James Simmons pick. I see the A’s pouncing on another high-ceiling college player that falls this year, similar to Grant Green from 2009. Previously: #5.

11. Toronto Blue Jays – Manny Machado, SS, Brito HS (FL) – Read the above statements about regime change, then copy and paste them here. The Jays will look for much more high-ceiling talent to help restock a system that’s been suffering from too many years of safe picks and, most recently, unsigned ones. Machado has his question marks, but with a bat that’s gained a little more attention over the fall and some hope of a long-term stay at shortstop, he’s climbed up boards. Previously: #21.

12. Cincinnati Reds – Chris Sale, LHP, Florida Gulf Coast – Sale established himself among the elite of college pitchers with an excellent summer on the Cape, and with the slight fall of Drew Pomeranz in some scouting circles, he’s found himself at the top of the lefty pitching pile. He’s got good upside and projection, along with current production, and the Reds have been working to build young pitching from within over the past few years. This is a solid match. Previously: #10.

13. Chicago White Sox – Austin Wilson, OF, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA) – I had Wilson discounted a little in my first mock draft in October, but I now don’t see him dropping past some of the tool-hungry scouting departments in this section of the first round. Despite drafting Jared Mitchell and Trayce Thompson a year ago, the White Sox still have a place to pick a high-level future right fielder with plus-plus power potential in Wilson. The White Sox don’t have a lengthy history of drafting prep bats this high, but they didn’t have an opportunity to do so most years, so the logic is here. Previously: #17.

14. Milwaukee Brewers – Josh Sale, OF, Bishop Blanchet HS (WA) – There are some baseball players who just seem born to hit. Sale (pronounced Sally) doesn’t have the best athleticism, the best arm, or the best body in the 2010 class, but he might have the best pure bat. That’s caught the attention of numerous clubs, and the Brewers are likely one of them. Milwaukee doesn’t shy away from prep hitters, and they took a far less refined one in Max Walla in the second round in 2009. Sale shouldn’t come with a high price tag, as he’s only committed to nearby Gonzaga, so he’ll get drafted on talent alone. Previously: #24.

15. Texas Rangers – Alex Wimmers, RHP, Ohio State – This pick is compensation for Matt Purke not signing in August, so I expect to see the Rangers go a bit conservative, saving money for their #22 overall pick and their two supplemental first-round picks. Wimmers is an excellent candidate for such a pick, and he offers roughly #2 or 3 starter upside. He’s bound to go somewhere in the middle of the round with a good spring, and his signability won’t be an issue. Previously: #12.

16. Chicago Cubs – Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Ole Miss – Another player mentioned in my bits and pieces writeup, Pomeranz has drawn a few more audible complaints about his motion than I had been hearing back in October. That’s not necessarily a result of anything he’s done between then and now, but only a reflection of scouts that now have time to compare their summer scouting. He still has excellent upside, and a team like the Cubs who see him as a long-term starter might take the risk of trying to clean up his motion and preserve his arm from wear and tear. Previously: #9.

17. Tampa Bay Rays – Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland HS (FL) – I’m listing Cabrera as a shortstop here, but my speculation is that the Rays would pick Cabrera as a right fielder in this situation. I think they have third base covered, and Cabrera’s not going to stick at short. Come to think of it, I don’t know why I continue to call him a shortstop. Anyway, Cabrera’s bat consistently draws raves, and he’s older than any of his prep counterparts, so the though process is that he’s a bit advanced compared to more risky prep bats available here. This is a good fit for the nearby Rays, who have another first-round pick after this. Previously: #25.

18. Los Angeles Angels – Nick Castellanos, 3B, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL) – Interestingly enough, I had Castellanos going in this slot when the Mariners owned it back in October. There’s been plenty of speculation that Castellanos has pushed himself into the top ten, but that’s a bit much when the defensive concerns are more present than ever. Castellanos might be a first baseman acting as a third baseman right now, so his plus bat takes a bit of back seat when thinking about drafting prep first basemen. The Angels have multiple early picks, so taking a chance here wouldn’t hurt them too much, as Castellanos could easily hit himself into being an asset anywhere on the diamond. Previously: #18.

19. Houston Astros – Kevin Gausman, RHP, Grandview HS (CO) – The Astros under Bobby Heck have become known for their ability to find excellent pitchers with pre-draft workouts, drafting them earlier than expected, then getting them signed and into their system fairly quickly. Having picked a bat in Washington earlier in the round, I expect nothing less than another such find here. Gausman comes from a non-traditional state in Colorado, but his arm is far from lagging behind. He has an LSU scholarship that might be an obstacle, but without strong family ties or state ties, it doesn’t look too bad on the surface. Previously: #27.

20. Boston Red Sox – Stetson Allie, RHP, St. Edwards HS (OH) – The Red Sox aren’t afraid of prep arms, but the question about Allie is what team will actually view him as a starter, rather than a power reliever. Boston has had success turning previous two-way player Casey Kelly into a top arm, so I don’t doubt their willingness to go after someone like Allie, but once again, only if they believe he has the durability and motion to go six innings with something more than his plus-plus fastball. The arm is special, and his arm strength is number one in this class, but I can’t see him cracking the top fifteen at the moment. Previously: #16.

21. Minnesota Twins – Kaleb Cowart, 3B, Cook County HS (GA) – I literally just changed the position for Cowart as I was writing. That’s how talented this kid is. He could easily be a first-round draft pick at either third or on the mound, reminding some observers of Ethan Martin, another Georgia prep product. The Twins took another talented two-way kid in Aaron Hicks the same year, and with the success they think he’s having, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them dip into the prep pool again this year, barring a Kyle Gibson-like fall of a more talented name that’s affordable to this slot. Previously: NR.

22. Texas Rangers – Bryce Brentz, OF, Middle Tennessee – Brentz is a bit of a message board sensation that even people with average interest in the draft have heard about. Looking at his stats can do that. However, with reports surfacing that Brentz has possible makeup and work ethic issues, I was generous in placing him even as high as this. He’s an all bat corner outfielder that’s faced limited competition, though the bat is truly special at times. If he has another monster year and answers some questions, he’ll go higher, but for now he slots well here as the Rangers’ second first-round pick. Previously: #20.

23. Florida Marlins – Stefan Sabol, C, Aliso Niguel HS (CA) – Calling Sabol a catcher is generous, though there’s a good chance that a team like the Marlins might pick Sabol this high even as an outfielder. He’s got all the tools to be an excellent pro ballplayer, and his price tag isn’t expected to top his slotting number, at least if picked in the first round. That’s the Marlins’ type of player. He’d fit well into their development program, though California prep catching product Kyle Skipworth hasn’t worked well there. For now, the Marlins’ and their heavily-scouted California base mix well with Sabol. Previously: NR.

24. San Francisco Giants – Rick Hague, SS, Rice – There’s little that Hague does badly, and the Giants are still looking for someone they can call on to fill their need at shortstop that’s been burning them recently. Drafting for need isn’t always bad, and if Hague has a good spring, he definitely deserves a draft slot this high. Some Rice players choose to use their university name as a bargaining chip, and a fair number actually return to school for a senior year, so that will have to be monitored, but this makes as much sense as any other pick. Previously: #22.

25. St. Louis Cardinals – James Paxton, LHP, Kentucky – I might not be writing that Paxton is from Kentucky for much longer. It will be sad if Paxton truly becomes the latest victim of the NCAA, as Paxton has admirably come back for a senior year of college, despite a substantial offer from Toronto in August. Scott Boras is definitely a factor here, but if Paxton falls this far due to being unable to be on the field or having a similarly rough year to Andy Oliver’s 2009, he won’t be an early pick. There’s enough concern already to force him down this far. Previously: #19.

26. Colorado Rockies – Chad Bettis, RHP, Texas Tech – After staging a successful draft coup with Tyler Matzek, Tim Wheeler, Rex Brothers, and more a year ago, I expect a bit of a regression in 2010, not because of poor scouting, but lesser draft position. Brothers fit the traditional mold for Rockies’ scouting, and Bettis fits into that mold of a power college arm, too. A bullpen that would feature a healthy Casey Weathers, Brothers, and Bettis could shut down some Major League clubs now. Previously: NR.

27. Philadelphia Phillies – Garin Cecchini, SS, Barbe HS (LA) – I should probably stop writing about Cecchini as a shortstop now, much like Yordy Cabrera. Cecchini’s long-term home is probably third base, though he would have good tools for that spot. Philadelphia has a noted history of drafting prep bats that are down a little on the refinement side of things, and I’d put Cecchini in that class. He’s got as much natural talent as the next prep, but will need significant work and a large number of minor league at-bats before seeing that natural talent on a Major League field. Previously: NR.

28. Los Angeles Dodgers – Chevez Clarke, OF, Marietta HS (GA) – I messed around with putting Clarke here in the October mock, only to go with Brett Eibner of Arkansas. Clarke has excellent tools and is a solid switch-hitter at the plate, and he’s got some good momentum heading into the spring. I expect him to be in the conversation at numerous spots late in the first round, though his college commitment to Georgia Tech might pose a problem if it is discovered that it’s strong. The Dodgers like tools with good makeup, and I see a match here. Previously: NR.

29. Los Angeles Angels – A.J. Vanegas, RHP, Redwood Christian HS (CA) – The first of back-to-back picks, I continue to see this pick making a lot of sense. I was saying the same thing about Tyler Skaggs a year ago, and he ended up in the Angels’ lap in the supplemental first round. Vanegas had an up-and-down summer, though he definitely regained his prospect status with some eye-opening fall performances. He fits well into the Angels’ development program, so this pick makes good sense if the Stanford commitment is less than the typical Stanford commitment. Previously: #30.

30. Los Angeles Angels – Justin O’Conner, SS, Cowan HS (IN) – Until the catching experiment is deemed successful this spring, O’Conner is still a prep shortstop, and a good one at that. With all the tools to be plus at the position (and catching), along with an excellent hit tool, O’Conner has stirred up some conversations as a back-third first-round candidate. He’s a little less refined than the premier prep names in the top part of the round, but if O’Conner’s catching experiment does go well, he could easily leapfrog Sabol. Previously: #32.

31. Tampa Bay Rays – Brandon Workman, RHP, Texas – I said in the October mock that I think the Rays will go with a college pitcher in this spot, and I continue to say it. This pick is compensation for Washington not signing in August, and they lose this pick if their new pick doesn’t sign, too. Workman’s a signable righty with a good pitch mix that would work well as either a mid-rotation starter or back-end reliever. The Texas pitching staff will be scouted plenty as it is, so whoever picks him will know what they’re getting when the time comes. Previously: #15.

32. New York Yankees – Cameron Bedrosian, RHP, East Coweta HS (GA) – The Yankees have typically liked their raw talent guys early in the draft over the past number of years. Bedrosian isn’t an excellent fit into that mold, but the bloodlines carry a lot of weight. He could easily sneak himself into first-round consideration, and with a price tag that’s supposed to be fairly reasonable (despite an LSU commitment), Bedrosian could offer solid upside while leaving budget room beyond this pick. It’s just an early thought before the spring season starts. Previously: NR.

What do you guys think?

January 15, 2010 Posted by | Mock Draft | 13 Comments

The First 2010 Mock Draft

Here’s your first look at a relevant, up-to-date 2010 mock draft. Since the first 16 picks are set in stone, that order is how it’s going to be next June. Picks 17 to 30 aren’t protected against free agent compensation, and neither is the Yankees’ pick at #32. Tampa Bay’s pick at #31 is protected, as it’s compensation for not signing LeVon Washington in the 2009 draft. Picks 19 and 21 are also not set in stone, as the one-game playoff on Tuesday will determine where Detroit and Minnesota line up. The winner will pick at #19, and the loser will pick at #21. I’m hedging my bets on the side of the Twins for right now, as they have their home field and a much better pitcher heading to the mound. So that’s the order in which I slotted them (for now). Enjoy!

1. Washington Nationals – Bryce Harper, C, CC of Southern Nevada – Harper’s not the best thing to ever happen to baseball, but he’s the frontrunner for this spot at the current moment. A big spring against more advanced competition will lock this spot up for him. He’s got some competition, but there’s no clear top talent behind him, so if the class is this muddy eight months from now, Harper’s going to go #1.
2. Pittsburgh Pirates – Anthony Ranaudo, RHP, LSU – A lot of people are basing their judgment of Ranaudo on his College World Series performance, where he was noticeably tired and didn’t have his best stuff. However, it’s hard to find the pure size of Ranaudo, and his stuff is much better than that nationally-televised outing. Don’t look for pure gas or a Strasburg-like bender, but he grades out as above-average in everything with more projectability than your average collegiate. He’s a Boras client, so we’ll see if that affects his status, but for now he’s the best major college prospect.
3. Baltimore Orioles – Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands HS (TX) – I had a hard time putting Taillon below Ranaudo, but I still think Ranaudo’s more proven history puts him slightly above Taillon’s rawness. There’s no doubt to me that Taillon is the best pitcher the 2010 prep class has to offer, as he’s raised his stock clearly above A.J. Cole. He’s got great size, great projectability, and great current stuff, so there’s not much to dislike here. His main question mark will be his representation, and he’s got a Rice commitment, too, so when the signability fog begins to clear, we’ll have a better read.
4. Kansas City Royals – Christian Colon, SS, Cal State Fullerton – Colon may have broken his leg at the end of Team USA’s season, but that was only after he had established himself as the best all-around position player in the 2010 college class. He’s a good fielder with good instincts, a good hitter, and there’s really nothing he’s bad at. People will whine about his lack of dazzling tools, but Colon’s got a solid toolset with a solid skillset with great makeup, and there’s no reason to think he can’t be an above-average Major League shortstop in relatively short order. Assuming he recovers fully from the broken leg, he’s a top ten pick with a good spring.
5. Cleveland Indians – Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech – McGuire’s a polarizing figure, but no one doubts his pure size and stuff. Like Ranaudo, some say that McGuire’s prospect package relies too much on size and projectability and not enough on actual pitching ability. However, McGuire’s got an above-average fastball with a pair of breaking pitches and a good changeup, so I don’t see anything that isn’t Major League-caliber in terms of future grades. He’s got to firm up his command, but he’s definitely right up at the top of the pack for the 2010 college pitching class.
6. Arizona Diamondbacks – A.J. Cole, RHP, Oviedo HS (FL) – Cole, who was considered pretty much even with Taillon entering the summer, has had a good summer, but not one that matched Taillon’s. He’s also a really big kid, but with a much more projectable frame that some teams drool over. His fastball is of the plus variety, and his slurve (that’s what I call it) is a plus pitch, too. He’s got true number one potential, so I don’t see him falling too much unless he completely falls apart in the spring. He’s committed to Miami.
7. New York Mets – Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley HS (FL) – Here is the best name no one’s talking about. People always talk about Taillon and Cole while leaving Whitson’s name out, but I don’t necessarily see it that way. He’s of similar size to Cole, with similar projectability, also has a plus fastball, and possibly has more movement on that pitch. He’s got both a slider and curve, and while neither are plus now, they’ve got great potential, too. That whole package is going to attract droves of scouts, and I see him going the way of Zack Wheeler from the 2009 class.
8. Houston Astros – Zack Cox, 3B, Arkansas – Cox is the best draft-eligible sophomore in the 2010 class, and he’s arguably the best overall hitter in the entire class. A lefty in the box, he’s got plus power and hit tools, but he’s lacking a bit in the pitch recognition and plate discipline departments. The big question he’ll look to answer in the spring is whether he can stick at third base, as some see him as a first baseman with hard hands and below-average third base range. His arm is a plus, so I’d give him every chance to play at third as long as he’s hitting.
9. San Diego Padres – Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Ole Miss – Left-handed power arms are hard to come by, and Pomeranz has one. There’s been some big questions about his arm action, and his lack of athleticism leads me to believe he’s going to be susceptible to the big arm injury. However, up to now he’s been healthy and effective, and his breaking ball can be one of the best in the 2010 class. He’s big, has a solid history, and is left-handed, so it’s hard to see him dropping out of the top fifteen without an injury of some sort.
10. Oakland Athletics – Chris Sale, LHP, Florida Gulf Coast – Sale was the star of the Cape Cod League this summer, and most prospect buffs would be lying to you if they told you they knew who he was before his summer run. He’s going to battle Pomeranz and James Paxton for the top lefty in the college class during the spring, and there’s a good chance Sale comes out ahead. He’s also big, standing at 6’6”, but he’s projectable too, as he might be able to add a good twenty pounds to his frame. He’s got a plus fastball with good movement and an effective changeup, and I see Sale as a relatively safe pick as far as pitchers go.
11. Toronto Blue Jays – Kris Bryant, 3B, Bonanza HS (NV) – It’s tough to predict this pick, along with Padres’, as they’re both in the middle of front office transition, and a GM hasn’t been named. However, teams usually keep a good number of their scouts for at least the next season, so I’m going at least partly off of history. Bryant’s got the power bat Toronto’s been searching for in the minors since Kevin Ahrens hasn’t panned out. He might be a first baseman in the long run, but if Bryant proves he can handle himself with the wood bat before June, teams won’t care. His raw power is that good. He’s probably a first round pick with a good spring, and he might even go higher than this with an offensive explosion.
12. Cincinnati Reds – Alex Wimmers, RHP, Ohio State – Wimmers had a great late summer on the Cape, and I think he’s moved into being the best cold-weather guy in the 2010 class. He’s not a big guy, unlike the pitchers above, but his stuff is quite advanced. I might call his fastball average, maybe a tick above with movement and command, but his curve and change are above-average and improving. The Reds went with Mike Leake in 2009, so they might want to go in a different direction from the polished college pitcher in 2010, but Wimmers is in-state and a true first-round talent, so there’s no reason to believe he can’t go here.
13. Chicago White Sox – Jesse Hahn, RHP, Virginia Tech – I’ll get a little heat for this, but I really think a team like the White Sox will bite on Hahn’s electric arm early in the first round. He’s got the definition of a plus fastball, just from velocity alone. With a better curveball, Hahn could easily slide into the top ten to a team that thinks he can be a top-tier starter. The only problem is that he’s probably still going to be a reliever eventually in pro ball, despite his big 6’5” frame, and that will knock him completely off some teams’ first-round lists. The arm is too big to ignore, though, and Hahn’s a real first-rounder in my book.
14. Milwaukee Brewers – LeVon Washington, OF, Chipola JC (FL) – Washington was a first-rounder in 2009, and there aren’t many current scenarios that knock him out of the first round in 2010. With a recovery in his right arm, which I do expect to happen, more teams will think of Washington as a true center fielder with plus range. His hit tool is still plus, and with a weaker class of hitters in the 2010 class, there’s nowhere to go but up with a good season at Chipola against solid Florida JUCO competition. Beware the Boras.
15. Texas Rangers – Brandon Workman, RHP, Texas – This pick is unprotected against future compensation, as this pick itself is compensation for the Rangers not signing Matt Purke from the 2009 draft. Therefore, it really has to be a college player here, and Workman’s probably affordable and solid from a talent perspective. He didn’t have a good summer, but he had an extra long spring at UT, and he still has a good fastball-curveball mix. There could be better talent available here, but it’s doubtful that the Rangers could afford it.
16. Chicago Cubs – Stetson Allie, RHP, St. Edwards HS (OH) – Some scouts see Allie as a third base prospect, but his arm is just too good to pass up. Remember how we thought Shelby Miller had the best pure arm a year ago? Allie’s is better. Remember how Madison Younginer got hype because of his closer role and plus fastball? Allie’s better. He already touches 99 with his fastball, has a slider in the upper-80s, and could be the best pure arm from high school in quite awhile. The problem is that he might just be a reliever, as he has a high-effort delivery. The Cubs seem to like these kind of cases, so this seems like a solid fit.
17. Tampa Bay Rays – Austin Wilson, OF, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA) – There’s been some hype about Wilson being a top five pick, but he just doesn’t have the polish to be that type of player quite yet. There’s not a lot of argument about whether Wilson is the best prep outfielder in the draft, as most scouts would say he is. However, there’s some question about where he might line up. His build is huge, he’s got plus raw power, and a plus-plus arm, but he needs to work on pitch recognition, and he’s not really a long-term center field prospect to most. If he falls this far, the Rays would probably be delighted to land him.
18. Seattle Mariners – Nick Castellanos, 3B, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL) – Castellanos is the Bobby Borchering to Kris Bryant’s Matt Davidson. Castellanos has the more advanced approach and better advanced game results than Bryant, but the tools seem to currently rest in Bryant’s favor. Castellanos has a good hit tool with good raw power, and the odds are in Castellanos’ favor in terms of staying at third base. All in all, Castellanos would form a good complement to Seattle’s pick of Nick Franklin in 2009.  Makes sense to me.
19. Detroit Tigers – James Paxton, LHP, Kentucky – If the Tigers win tomorrow, then they slide two spots from here. I’m just guessing they’ll lose. Sorry Tiger fans. Anyway, Paxton is a strong-armed lefty and Boras client, and the Tigers like both. With better results to go with the plus stuff that Paxton flashed in 2009, he’ll probably improve his draft position from the supplemental first round slot he landed to the Blue Jays in the 2009 draft. Paxton isn’t your typical senior sign, as he’ll still just be 21 at the time of the draft, and he’s still unlocking the potential he has after years in an even colder climate than Kentucky. He’s a probable first-rounder to at least a team with multiple early picks after the free agent signings shake out.
20. Atlanta Braves – Bryce Brentz, OF, Middle Tennessee – There’s been a lot of hype around Brentz with his huge numbers, and my draft profile of him has been wildly popular. However, Brentz has his flaws, as pitch recognition continues to be a bit of a concern with him. Do we have another Jeff Francoeur on our hands? Not at all. But it’s just something to watch. On the plus side, he’s got big raw power, solid athleticism, and a plus arm for a corner outfield spot, so any team looking for a potential middle-of-the-order hitter will grab him. Atlanta can’t have guys like Matt Diaz, Garret Anderson, and Ryan Church forever if they expect to win.
21. Minnesota Twins – Manny Machado, SS, Brito Private HS (FL) – Machado’s a polarizing player in the scouting ranks, as there’s an argument raging over whether Machado’s a true shortstop or not. It’s not hard to follow either side’s argument. On the plus side, Machado can turn in some plays that look truly middle infielder-esque numerous times over the course of the game. On the minus side, he can sometimes look stiff and show minus hands. In addition, the first thing you notice about him when you watch him is how big he looks for the shortstop position. Not everyone can be Cal Ripken and handle shortstop in the bigs at that size. I’m not putting down his athleticism. It’s solid. So is the arm. But with a Yunel Escobar-like bat wrap and overall questions about his bat, the defense is what’s going to determine his draft slot.
22. Texas Rangers – Rick Hague, SS, Rice – Once again, the Rangers might go with a Texas product in Hague. This pick is protected against a player not signing, so maybe they pick a riskier player here. While I list Hague as a shortstop here, I wouldn’t be surprised to see someone take him as a third baseman after his plus-plus fielding run there with Team USA this summer. He’d be a solid-average, perhaps a bit better, defensive shortstop, though he might slow down a bit too much for the position quickly as a result of his great work ethic in gaining strength. His hitting should be solid, and while he doesn’t have above-average power and pitch recognition, he’s coachable and should improve continually in pro ball. He’s a late first-rounder in most scenarios at this point.
23. Florida Marlins – Dylan Covey, RHP, Maranatha HS (CA) – The Marlins have a long history with preps in California, and Covey’s the best pitcher out there in the 2010 class. There’s a pretty clear line between Covey and the top arms like Taillon, Cole, Whitson, and Allie, but don’t be surprised if Covey has a big jump similar to fellow California prep Matt Hobgood had in the 2009 class. He’s got a plus fastball and curveball, but like most preps, he lacks a good current changeup, and he’ll need that to thrive in the pros. He’s a mid- to late-first rounder now, but there’s room for more.
24. San Francisco Giants – Josh Sale, OF, Bishop Blanchet HS (WA) – Sale’s the type of kid that could absolutely explode into top draft material with a huge spring season. He’s a corner outfielder in the truest sense of the word, but the bat’s legit. A lefty hitter, he’s got all the makings of a middle-of-the-order hitter, and he can put an absolute charge into a ball. The Giants need those type of hitters, and they’re quietly building a solid nucleus of young hitting prospects to go with their usual glut of young pitching. A lineup including Josh Sale in a corner outfield spot could be special.
25. St. Louis Cardinals – Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland HS (FL) – Remember what I said about Machado being big? Cabrera’s bigger. That’s why many scouts think Cabrera’s eventually going to outgrow shortstop, where he shows consistently good actions and range. He’s a bit of a hacker at the plate, but he’s got plus tools there, too. He’s fast, too, with a plus arm, so he’s what you might consider a true five-tool player in a relatively weak class for tools. If Cabrera turns out a great senior year, he could be compared favorably to Jio Mier of the Astros, and I see him being a solid first-round pick.
26. Colorado Rockies – Kyle Blair, RHP, San Diego – If only Blair could up his fastball. That’s the story I keep hearing. His slider is an absolute plus pitch, and with a solid changeup, Blair could be a top prospect with a couple ticks extra on his average fastball. However, it’s not the case, and I see him as more of a late first-rounder at the moment. He’s probably more hyped than your average 2010 draft prospect, but it’s all about current draft position, and I can’t put him higher than this now. A good spring season could bump him up, as could extra ticks on the fastball.
27. Philadelphia Phillies – Kevin Gausman, RHP, Grandview HS (CO) – The Phillies signed the marquee 2009 LSU pitching recruit in Brody Colvin, and Gausman’s that guy in the 2010 class. He’s blessed with good size at 6’4”, and he’s ultra-projectable, probably more projectable than anyone in the class. He doesn’t have the plus fastball velocity that the top guys have, but it’s still above-average with good life. He’s got the makings of a good curveball and changeup, so we might have another high-ceiling arm on our hands. The Phillies love these type of projectable arms, and assuming they don’t sign a Type A free agent, Gausman might be on their short list.
28. Los Angeles Dodgers – Brett Eibner, OF/RHP, Arkansas – Eibner’s the best two-way player in the 2010 college class, and I really think he’s a first-round type of guy. He’s got plus power at the plate with solid actions in a corner outfield spot, and he’s also a potential mid-rotation guy on the mound. I like him more as a hitter, so I’ll stick with that for now. The Dodgers picked both Aaron Miller and Blake Smith, the two best two-way college players in the 2009 draft, so why not Eibner?
29. Boston Red Sox – Jedd Gyorko, 3B/2B, West Virginia – Gyorko’s a questionable first-rounder to those that only love pure tools, but his bat is a legitimate first-round weapon in my book. He’s got a plus hit tool and decent raw power, and I think Gyorko could be a solid all-around infielder. Whether he’s a second baseman or third baseman isn’t a big deal, as his bat will play at either spot, but the Red Sox would probably only go for him at the third base spot. He fits perfectly into the Boston style of hitting, and I can easily see a match here.
30. Los Angeles Angels – A.J. Vanegas, RHP, Redwood Christian HS (CA) – Vanegas has good pure stuff, and he probably has one of the best breaking balls in the entire class. He didn’t have a great summer, but the talent was always on display, despite some hiccups. The biggest question I have about him is his Stanford commitment, and that could scare a lot of teams away. If he’s signable, he’s probably a late first-round or supplemental-round talent. The Angels wouldn’t mind signing this in-state prospect.
31. Tampa Bay Rays – Bryan Morgado, LHP, Tennessee – This pick isn’t protected against a player not signing, so the Rays will probably have to go the college route with the pick. Morgado was a third-rounder a year ago to the White Sox as a draft-eligible sophomore. A great summer raised his stock, and he didn’t sign, but he established himself as a great 2010 prospect in the process. He’s probably more in the supplemental- to early-second round range, but the Rays just need a signable guy in this slot, and Morgado’s got good potential.
32. New York Yankees – Justin O’Conner, SS, Cowan HS (IN) – The Yankees are building a solid core of young hitting in their system, and they’re only lacking an eventual replacement for Derek Jeter. Enter Justin O’Conner. O’Conner’s got all the tools to be a plus shortstop with both the glove and the bat, and it’s only his geographic location that’s hampered him as a prospect. He’s got one of the best infield arms in the entire class, and there’s not much thought that he’ll ever have to move positions. He hits well, too, and he could easily surpass both Machado and Cabrera in this class of shortstops. This would be a great pick for the Yankees, who should be brainstorming about who should replace Jeter in the near-future.

There’s your first 2010 mock. What do you think?

October 5, 2009 Posted by | Mock Draft | 18 Comments

Final Mock Draft, Rounds 1-3

Here’s the last installment of my mock draft series. Enjoy!

1. Washington – Steven Strasburg, RHP, San Diego State
2. Seattle – Dustin Ackley, OF, North Carolina
3. San Diego – Donavan Tate, OF, Cartersville HS (GA)
4. Pittsburgh – Aaron Crow, RHP, Ft. Worth Cats
5. Baltimore – Zack Wheeler, RHP, East Paulding HS (GA)
6. San Francisco – Tyler Matzek, LHP, East Capistrano HS (CA)
7. Atlanta – Alex White, RHP, North Carolina
8. Cincinnati – Mike Minor, LHP, Vanderbilt
9. Detroit – Jacob Turner, RHP, Westminster Christian Academy (MO)
10. Washington – Drew Storen, RHP, Stanford
11. Colorado – Matt Hobgood, RHP, Norco HS (CA)
12. Kansas City – Mike Leake, RHP, Arizona State
13. Oakland – Grant Green, SS, USC
14. Texas – Shelby Miller, RHP, Brownwood HS (TX)
15. Cleveland – Tanner Scheppers, RHP, St. Paul Saints
16. Arizona – Bobby Borchering, 3B, Bishop Verot HS (FL)
17. Arizona – Kyle Gibson, RHP, Missouri
18. Florida – Chad James, LHP, Yukon HS (FL)
19. St. Louis – Matt Purke, LHP, Klein HS (TX)
20. Toronto – Mike Trout, OF, Millville HS (NJ)
21. Houston – Jiovanni Mier, SS, Bonita HS (CA)
22. Minnesota – Eric Arnett, RHP, Indiana
23. Chicago (AL) – Chad Jenkins, RHP, Kennesaw State
24. Los Angeles (AL) – Everett Williams, OF, McCallum HS (TX)
25. Los Angeles (AL) – Tyler Skaggs, LHP, Santa Monica HS (CA)
26. Milwaukee – Jared Mitchell, OF, LSU
27. Seattle – Tim Wheeler, OF, Sacramento State
28. Boston – Max Stassi, C, Yuba City HS (CA)
29. New York (AL) – Tony Sanchez, C, Boston College
30. Tampa Bay – Wil Myers, C, Wesleyan Christian Academy (NC)
31. Chicago (NL) – AJ Pollock, OF, Notre Dame
32. Colorado – Tommy Joseph, C, Horizon HS (AZ)

Supplemental First Round

33. Seattle – Steve Baron, C, John A. Ferguson HS (FL)
34. Colorado – Garrett Gould, RHP, Maize HS (KS)
35. Arizona – Rex Brothers, LHP, Lipscomb
36. Los Angeles (NL) – Reymond Fuentes, OF, Callego HS (PR)
37. Toronto – Kyle Heckathorn, RHP, Kennesaw State
38. Chicago (AL) – Brett Jackson, OF, California
39. Milwaukee – Billy Bullock, RHP, Florida
40. Los Angeles (AL) – Rich Poythress, 1B, Georgia
41. Arizona – Marc Krauss, OF, Ohio
42. Los Angeles (AL) – Matt Davidson, 3B, Yucaipa HS (CA)
43. Cincinnati – Andrew Oliver, LHP, Oklahoma State
44. Texas – Slade Heathcott, OF, Texas HS (TX)
45. Arizona – Sam Dyson, RHP, South Carolina
46. Minnesota – Jason Kipnis, OF, Arizona State
47. Milwaukee – Alex Wilson, RHP, Texas A&M
48. Los Angeles (AL) – Madison Younginer, RHP, Mauldin HS (SC)
49. Pittsburgh – Brody Colvin, RHP, St. Thomas More HS (LA)

Second Round

50. Washington – Kent Matthes, OF, Alabama
51. Seattle – James Paxton, LHP, Kentucky
52. San Diego – Brad Boxberger, RHP, USC
53. Pittsburgh – Chris Dominguez, 3B, Louisville
54. Baltimore – Mychal Givens, SS, Plant HS (FL)
55. San Francisco  – Nick Franklin, SS, Lake Brantley HS (FL)
56. Los Angeles (NL) – Keyvius Sampson, RHP, Forest HS (FL)
57. Cincinnati – Angelo Songco, OF, Loyola Marymount
58. Detroit – Joe Kelly, RHP, UC Riverside
59. Colorado – Aaron Miller, LHP, Baylor
60. Arizona – Victor Black, RHP, Dallas Baptist
61. Chicago (AL) – Chris Dwyer, LHP, Clemson
62. Texas – David Renfroe, SS, South Panola HS (MS)
63. Cleveland – Billy Hamilton, SS, Taylorsville HS (MS)
64. Arizona – Matt Bashore, LHP, Indiana
65. Los Angeles (NL) – Brett Wallach, RHP, Orange Coast JC (CA)
66. Florida – Jake Barrett, RHP, Desert Ridge HS (AZ)
67. St. Louis – Ryan Buch, RHP, Monmouth
68. Toronto – A.J. Morris, RHP, Kansas State
69. Houston – Zack Von Rosenberg, RHP, Zachary HS (LA)
70. Minnesota – Daniel Fields, SS, U. of Detroit Jesuit HS (MI)
71. Chicago (AL) – Jeff Kobernus, 2B, California
72. New York (NL) – Jeff Malm, 1B, Bishop Gorman HS (NV)
73. Milwaukee – Tommy Mendonca, 3B, Fresno State
74. Milwaukee – Steven Matz, LHP, Ward Melville HS (NY)
75. Philadelphia – Kentrail Davis, OF, Tennessee
76. New York (AL) – Brooks Pounders, RHP, Temecula Valley HS (CA)
77. Boston – LeVon Washington, OF, Buchholz HS (FL)
78. Tampa Bay – Garrett Richards, RHP, Oklahoma
79. Chicago (NL) – Blake Smith, RHP/OF, California
80. Los Angeles (AL) – Brooks Raley, LHP, Texas A&M

Third Round

81. Washington – Ben Tootle, RHP, Jacksonville State
82. Seattle – Jake Eliopoulos, LHP, Sacred Heart Catholic HS (ON)
83. San Diego – Josh Phegley, C, Indiana
84. Pittsburgh – Evan Chambers, OF, Hillsborough JC (FL)
85. Baltimore – Randal Grichuk, OF, Lamar Consolidated HS (TX)
86. San Francisco – Brad Stillings, RHP, Kent State
87. Atlanta – Todd Glaesmann, OF, Midway HS (TX)
88. Cincinnati – Ryan Jackson, SS, Miami
89. Detroit – Matt den Dekker, OF, Florida
90. Colorado – Kyle Seager, 3B, North Carolina
91. Kansas City – Brian Goodwin, OF, Rocky Mount HS (NC)
92. Oakland – Colton Cain, LHP, Waxahachie HS (TX)
93. Texas – Mike Belfiore, LHP, Boston College
94. Cleveland – David Hale, RHP, Princeton
95. Arizona – Justin Marks, LHP, Louisville
96. Los Angeles (NL) – J.R. Murphy, C, Pendleton School (FL)
97. Florida – Dane Williams, RHP, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL)
98. St. Louis – Jeremy Hezelbaker, OF, Ball State
99. Toronto – Mike Ohlman, C, Lakewood Ranch HS (FL)
100. Houston – Bryan Berglund, RHP, Royal HS (CA)
101. Minnesota – James Jones, LHP, Long Island
102. Chicago (AL) – Andrew Susac, C, Jesuit HS (CA)
103. New York (NL) – Luke Bailey, C, Troup County HS (GA)
104. Toronto – Jason Stoffel, RHP, Arizona
105. Milwaukee – Andrew Doyle, RHP, Oklahoma
106. Philadelphia – David Holmberg, LHP, Port Charlotte HS (FL)
107. Boston – Eric Smith, RHP, Rhode Island
108. Tampa Bay – Jabari Blash, OF, Miami-Dade JC (FL)
109. Chicago (NL) – Kendal Volz, RHP, Baylor
110. Los Angeles (AL) – Cameron Garfield, C, Murrieta Valley HS (CA)

Supplemental Third Round

111. Houston – D.J. LeMehieu, 2B, LSU

That’s it for my mock drafts. Draft is in a little over four hours.

June 9, 2009 Posted by | Mock Draft | 21 Comments