The MLB Draft Countdown Is On…
For what could be the biggest day of a college baseball players (or high school) life is only mere hours away. On Thursday June 9th, the first round of the MLB draft will be completed. This year there are will be 41 first round draft picks, 34 will be regular picks and 5 will be competitive balance picks, 1 was a traded pick and 1 was a compensation pick.
The Competitive Balance Lottery or CBL, are up to 6 additional picks at the end of the first and second round. These are awarded to the 10 smallest market teams or 10 smallest revenue pools. This year these teams include:
- Cincinnati Reds
- Oakland A’s
- Colorado Rockies
- Arizona Diamondbacks
- Pittsburgh Pirates
- San Diego Padres
- Cleveland Indians
- Minnesota Twins
- Milwaukee Brewers
- Tampa Bay Rays
After combing over dozens of mock drafts, and reading the darkest corners of the internet over who will be drafting who it is clear that it is a fucking crap shoot. There are consistently a few names that continue to pop-up on everyone’s mock draft in the top 3.
The Philadelphia Phillies, you are now on the clock.
1 – Philadelphia Phillies
A.J. Puk – Florida Gators- LHP
- AJ is a 6’7 hard throwing left handed pitcher, enough said right? He is in his junior year at Florida, he has a fastball that can reach 99 MPH, and a slider that is between 88-90 MPH. Also likes to throw a change-up as his third pitch.
2 – Cincinnati Reds
Jason Groome – Barnegat HS – LHP
- Jason is a senior with his high school in New Jersey, with a commitment to play at Vanderbilt University. His fastball is an average 96 MPH however, when you pair that with a nasty curveball and a change-up with some sinking action he is going to be a top draft pick Thursday night. If Jason goes in the top 2, he will be the highest born New Jersey native since Willie Banks in 1987 who went 3rd overall to the Minnesota Twins.
3 – Atlanta Braves
Kyle Lewis – Mercer – OF
- Kyle Lewis is a centre-fielder with Mercer. The 6’4 righty is a Junior with Mercer, who has played 54 games this season is slashing .357 with a .667 slugging. He has an impressive 17 HR’s, 57 RBI and 19 BB. He is set to become the first ever first rounder from the Mercer Bears. Also was named the College Player of the Year.
4 – Colorado Rockies
Riley Pint – St. Thomas Aquinas HS – RHP
- This senior in high school out of Kansas is a Louisiana State commit and has the stuff to back it up. He throws a hard fastball, which everyone seems to now-a-days, but when I say I fast I mean fast. He consistently throws a 95-99 MPH fastball, however, it had touched 102 MPH earlier this season. He stands 6’4 and is 210 LBS. This pitcher can also hit, he led his school to a state championship by hitting a 2 run double in the final.
5 – Milwaukee Brewers
Mickey Moniak – La Costa Canyon HS – OF
- Mickey is his first name. I’ll let that sink in for a moment. The lefty bat is a UCLA commit for next year and is regarded as one of the high school bats in the country. He would provide some depth to the OF position with names like Brett Phillips and Trent Clark who are playing AA and A respectively.
6 – Oakland Athletics
Nick Senzel – Tennessee – 3B
- Nick is a 6’1 Junior from a highly regarded baseball program with the Volunteers. He has made a name for himself as a very productive hitter having an OPS of .976 last season. He also earned the Top Prospect award for the South-eastern Conference.
7 – Miami Marlins
Ian Anderson – Shenendehowa HS – RHP
- Ian was another highly scouted Vanderbilt commit, who is currently a senior at his high school in New York. The 6’3 primary fastball thrower was sidelined with an oblique injury, the rumour is that he will slide in the draft, however, Miami should jump on him early and not waste this opportunity.
8 – San Diego Padres
Blake Rutherford – Chaminade College Prep – OF
- This lefty outfielder has committed to UCLA for next season. Has been scouted for is speed on the base paths and also in the field. I have him going 8th due to the lack of depth the Padres have in the outfield.
9 – Detroit Tigers
Corey Ray – Louisville – OF
- Corey was previously drafted in 2013 by the Seattle Mariners in the 33rd round, number 987th. He is slated to be the highest Louisville draft pick ever. He had a breakout season last year and has continued that dominance into this season and into the D1 College World Series Tournament.
10 – Chicago White Sox
Delvin Perez – International Baseball Academy (Puerto Rico) – SS
- The 6’3 righty is a speed demon. He has no commitment beyond this season and is currently ranked 9th on the MLB’s top prospect watch for this years draft. I put him 10th with the White Sox because I see him instantly coming over to support the farm system of the team.
Below is from Baseball America website that was posted yesterday:
“Industry sources have told Baseball America that shortstop Delvin Perez, the Puerto Rican shortstop who ranks No. 8 on the BA 500, failed the drug test administered by the Major League Scouting Bureau. Perez’s positive test was first reported by MLB Network’s Jon Heyman.”
11 – Seattle Mariners
Braxton Garrett – Florence HS – LHP
- This 6’3 lefty has one of the best curveballs in this draft class. Throwing it on a rope between 76-80 MPH it has become the best piece of his arsenal. This Vanderbilt commit (are you seeing the trend yet?) is going to be a great pitcher in the years to come and developing his change-up.
12 – Boston Red Sox
Matt Manning – Sheldon HS – RHP
- I hope Matt has a winter coat because he is going to need it when he is playing at Fenway Park in the middle of October. This tower of a man stands 6’6, throws heat around 98 MPH and also has a power curve to compliment his fastball. He gets his height from his basketball playing father which would give him the ability to come at you a lot harder and faster.
13 – Tampa Bay Rays
Zach Collins – Miami – C
- The first catcher to come off the board will be Zach Collins. The lefty bat was previously drafted by the Reds and was a top 100 prospect at that time. He went 825, in the 27th round, however all of that will change Thursday. With an ability to move to first base that could move Collins into the top 10 conversation.
14 – Cleveland Indians
Forrest Whitley – Alamo Heights HS – RHP
- This is a Texan native who stands 6’7 with a mid 90’s fastball. He also throws a curve and slider to compliment his fastball speed. He has committed to Florida State for next year and he will be able to work on the details to make him a major leaguer one day.
15 – Minnesota Twins
Dakota Hudson – Mississippi State – RHP
- This previous draftee was taken by Texas back in 2013 out of high school, he was drafted 1030th, in the 33rd round. The junior at Miss State is 6’5 and tops his fastball at 98. Went 34 2/3 innings without an ER, a school record.
16 – Los Angeles Angels
Joshua Lowe – Pope HS – 3B
- This lefty was named the Gatorade player of the year for Georgia after leading his team to the 6-A state finals. His 6’4 frame produces raw power and also has speed to burn on the base paths.
17 – Houston Astros
Nolan Jones – Holy Ghost Prep – 3B
- The 6’3 hot corner man for his prep school in Pennsylvania had tweaked his back at the beginning of the season, however, he quickly picked up where he left off. Nolan has been regarded to having very quick hands and even being able to throw mid 90’s off the mound. I think this is a steal for the ‘Stros who could have him play where they would like, SS, 3B or even given the arm a shot at pitching. Talk about utility man.
18 – New York Yankees
Jordan Sheffield – Vanderbilt – RHP
- Jordan is a 6 foot red-shirt freshman who was previously drafted by the Boston Red Sox. He has a fastball that can reach 98. On MLB he has one of the highest scoring fastball’s at a score of 70. As well, why wouldn’t the Yankees try and draft something that the Red Sox wanted?
19 – New York Mets
Bryan Reynolds – Vanderbilt – OF
- This Vandy junior is a hard hitting switch hitter helping his team get to the College World Series final in 2015. His speed is above average as an athlete making him a prime candidate to move around the field.
20 – Los Angles Dodgers
Alex Kirilloff – Plum HS – OF
- This left handed OF has got a lot of attention recently for his hitting power, as well, his pitching ability. When you look at a potential draft candidate you look for versatility and Alex would be a man the Dodgers would love to have.
21 – Toronto Blue Jays
Joey Wentz – Shawnee Mission East HS – LHP
- This Kansas product has turned heads this year in his senior year. Joey is 6’5;210, and one on the highest ratings on his fastball and his curveball. His fastball velocity sits around 93-95 however it has touched 98. He has has a curve and a change-up with “fade.” There is no relation to Carson Wentz who just went second overall in this years NFL draft. Wentz has committed to Virginia for next season.