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Draft  | Mock Draft  | 5/7/2020

Mock Draft Version 2.0

Brian Sakowski      Vincent Cervino     
Photo: Spencer Torkelson (Arizona State Athletics)
Welcome to version 2.0 of our mock draft series, leading up until the draft itself. As of this writing, we still aren't quite sure as to the particulars of how the draft will actually take place. All indications are that the draft will take place as scheduled, but what we're really waiting on is to see just how many rounds it will be. There are conflicting reports out there, with no concrete knowledge, about the draft ranging anywhere from 5 to 20 rounds. Our latest info says that it'll be closer to 5 than 20, with some contacts stating that 5 is the number, though we're just going to have to wait for MLB to announce to be sure. The expectation is also such that this will be an extremely college-heavy draft, both due to the strength of the college crop as well as the lack of much prep scouting this spring due to COVID; with the expectation being that teams will lean towards who they have the most data on, which, in most cases, is going to be college players. 

For the purposes of this mock draft, Brian Sakowski and Vinnie Cervino again rotated picks, with Brian taking the odd-numbered picks and Vinnie selecting the even-numbered picks. Our strategy is something of a hybrid here, in that it's still too early and too murky to really try and link teams to players, especially given the current situation in the world. With that being said, we tried to blend our approaches here. What makes sense for a team with a particular pick? Do we have information about teams and players, even something as innocuous as a whispered rumor? We took both of those things into consideration, as well as other things like GM/team history, sticking to our own board, giving teams a variety of player profiles if they have several picks in this exercise, and so on. 

1. Detroit Tigers | Spencer Torkelson, 1B, Arizona State
This pick almost certainly will come down to Torkelson or Austin Martin, and while this evaluator is of the belief that Martin could have played his way into 1:1 with a full spring schedule, the pick right now seems like it'll be Torkelson, given his prodigious offensive upside as well as the Tigers' glaring need for an advanced middle-order bat in their system. 

2. Baltimore Orioles |  Austin Martin, 3b/cf, Vanderbilt
Martin’s future defensive home will be a question throughout his developmental process but what will not is his ability to find the barrel. The Vanderbilt product is the most polished bat in the draft with incredible barrel skills and the overall athleticism to slot both on the dirt or in centerfield. 

3. Miami Marlins |  Asa Lacy, lhp, Texas A&M
Lacy has seemingly ascended to the top arm available slot on most boards, right in front of Georgia's Emerson Hancock. As a physical, athletic lefty with two plus pitches right now in his fastball and slider, Lacy's potential frontline starter profile makes him a slam dunk here if Tork/Martin are off the board. 

4. Kansas City Royals |  Nick Gonzales, 2b, New Mexico State
Gonzales has drawn hit tool comparisons to former top five pick Nick Madrigal but he’s a very polished and impressive prospect in his own right. He transitioned over to shortstop this year but projects at second base long term with a preternatural feel to hit along with above-average raw power in his frame.

5. Toronto Blue Jays |  Emerson Hancock, rhp, Georgia 
The Blue Jays would probably be pretty excited if Hancock ended up being available at 5, and in this scenario he is. With a starter's build and operation, Hancock flashes 3 plus pitches with excellent control and command, though at times the fastball is a little too hittable. 

6. Seattle Mariners |  Max Meyer, rhp, Minnesota
The Mariners go for stuff here at six in what might be the most impressive repertoire in the entire draft. Meyer has a fastball that can reach triple digits along with a slider that routinely sits in the low-90s and although Meyer projects as a starter he’ll have dominant late inning stuff if he ends up a reliever.

7. Pittsburgh Pirates |  Zac Veen, of, Spruce Creek HS (Fla.)
This feels like a good spot to start the run on prep talent, and in our last draft we had prep OF Austin Hendrick here. In this iteration, Veen falls into Pittsburgh's lap at No. 7 and is the pick. With one of the highest offensive ceilings in the class and a bevy of peripheral tools, Veen is a good long term piece for the Pirates to potentially build around. 

8. San Diego Padres |  Austin Hendrick, of, West Allegheny HS (Pa.)
Padres GM AJ Preller loves upside prep picks and there might not be more upside in the entire draft than Austin Hendrick. The Pittsburgh-area native projects for immense raw power along with the best bat speed in the prep class and his ability to make adjustments bode well for his professional future. 

9. Colorado Rockies |  Cade Cavalli, rhp, Oklahoma
We're notably higher at PG on Cavalli than most, though this pick still does make sense regardless. The Rockies get a spring riser in Cavalli here, who features excellent size, velocity, and breaking stuff. He's evoked some slight comparisons to Jackson Rutledge, who went at pick No. 11 a year ago. 


10. Los Angeles Angels |  Mick Abel, rhp, Jesuit HS (Ore.)
The top prep righthander in the class goes to the Angels as the Halos are getting a lean, projectable pitching prospect with a hellacious slider. There’s clear upside with Abel, something the Angels aren’t known to shy away from, and the Oregon-native will be followed closely for years to come.

11. Chicago White Sox | Reid Detmers, LHP, Louisville
The White Sox, while definitely moving towards prep players in higher rounds in recent years, still have a track record of taking college players in the first round, so we'll give them Detmers here. A premier performer, Detmers' calling cards are his pitchability and feel to spin the baseball, with quality mid-rotation upside who should move quickly. 

12. Cincinnati Reds |  Patrick Bailey, c, North Carolina State
The Reds nab perhaps the safest prospect in the draft in the switch-hitting college backstop Patrick Bailey. There’s pretty good juice from both sides with impressive chops defensively and he’s a solid bet to not only stick behind the dish long term but also provide some offensive value due to his power and on-base skills.

13. San Francisco Giants |  Robert Hassell III, of, Independence HS (Tenn.)
This class is loaded with talented prep bats, and Hassell may just be in play even higher than this. An athletic, toolsy hitter with one of the better hit tools in the prep ranks, Hassell has prodigious upside as a player who can potentially be an impactful offensive piece while also playing the middle of the field. 

14. Texas Rangers |  Jared Kelley, rhp, Refugio HS (Texas)
The second prep righthander comes off the board as the Rangers stick locally and take one of the hardest prep throwers in the class with Kelley. He’s got a workhorse frame and routinely touches 99 mph while showing off a plus changeup and a breaking ball that’s continued to make strides over the last calendar year.

15. Philadelphia Phillies |  Tyler Soderstrom, c/of, Turlock HS (Calif.)
Soderstrom's stock is high as it sits right now, even if he's not seen as a catcher moving forward. The bat is the draw here, with the potential to be not only a high-end hitter, but a high-end power hitter as well, and he has the athleticism and arm strength to play right field if that's what his drafting team decides to do. 

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