Leading Fifth Overall Candidates
RHP Emerson Hancock (Georgia) – In midst of Lacy’s rise, Hancock has been floating around as the no. 2 pitcher in the draft amongst draft rooms. Pitchers are volatile, so Gonzales, Torkelson, and Martin’s continued dominance and lack of risk are making the Hancock to Toronto rumblings more than just a longshot – but a strong possibility. Of the “Big Five”, only one hasn’t lived up to the hype, and that’s Emerson, and it just might work in the Blue Jays’ favor.
2B Nick Gonzales (New Mexico State) – In my last mock draft, I had Gonzales falling into the Jays lap and while I still stand behind it, I don’t think he makes it past KC, though I feel like I’ve heard the same about Hancock, and Lacy – logic suggests one of them will be on the board. Gonzales is probably the second most-likely candidate to be the Jays Fifth Overall Pick, behind, well – you’ll find out soon.
LHP Asa Lacy (Texas A&M) – There’s nothing much to say, he has the best slider in the class and a fastball just as good. This year, Lacy has been the best pitcher in College Baseball, as expected. If the Draft were today, I’d bet my life-savings on Lacy being the Jays Selection, and as much as I don’t want it to be a reality, it’ll be one soon. Lacy has quickly become some organizations’ top pitcher in the draft, according to Baseball America – so there’s a chance somebody (like Hancock) falls to Toronto because of Lacy’s steady rise.
OF Garrett Mitchell (UCLA) – Discussion regarding Mitchell’s type one Diabetes was brought up on Twitter by Keith Law. In response to “More or less – 30% chance that Garrett Mitchell from UCLA slips out of the first entirely?”. Law responded “I’d say a bit more. The diabetes will scare a lot of teams off”. I don’t know if there’s truth behind this, given BA consistently mocking him in the top 10 on their mock drafts. Diabetes aside, Mitchell has been sensational, slashing .357/.433/.500. Though he still hasn’t tapped into that raw-power everybody raves about, he’s still showed off all five tools.
Garrett Crochet is Back
Tennessee’s Ace and First Round Talent, Garrett Crochet, was out-of-the-spotlight, and in his 2020 debut, Crochet was, well – sensational, and because of it he went from no. 26 on my board to no. 14. In his debut, he went 3.1 innings, allowing 0 R, 2 H, with 6 SO, and no BB or HBP. He was incredibly productive (only 42 Pitches, 74% Strikes) in his limited start, as expected. Crochet was coming off shoulder soreness that saw him land on the injury report prior to Opening Day. In the first inning, Crochet threw eight fastballs, all 97 or 98 (mph), seven for strikes, and two for swing-and-misses. During his final four outs, he was sitting in the 93-95 (mph) range. At the end of the day, Crochet threw 22 FB, 20 for a strike, and 7 for a swing-and-miss – not only is Crochet’s FB a Plus-Pitch, but it has all the potential in the world to be the one of (if not the) best Fastballs the Class.
Like most pitchers, Crochet faces “reliever or starter” questions, and this weekend he answered those by flashing a plus-SL that only got 4 swing-and-misses on 13 pitches, though it was only thrown for a strike 46%; he has elite spin on it, typically in the 2,800-3,000 (rpms) range. His CH was thrown 7 times, for a strike 5 times, and twice for a swing-and-miss, more than a capable third pitch. Crochet’s gone under-the-shadows of two elite LHP in Asa Lacy and Reid Detmers, both getting top 10 talk, and Crochet is trending in the same direction as them. An Injury to Crochet saw him drop from 12th to 26th and boy did he show he’s more than healthy this weekend – showing off exactly what he did in the fall, elite velo, capable secondaries, and a much improved control-over-command style.
Mid-Round Talents Climbing
Ole Miss shortstop Anthony Servideo is everything this generation loves about college baseball – a cocky but not arrogant, talented but not flashy prototypical college middle-infielder that has all the confidence in the world. Servideo reminds me of 2017 4th round Pick and LSU SS, Kramer Robertson. He shares similarities with ex-teammate and middle infielder, Grae Kessinger – a 2nd Round Pick in the 2019 Draft. This year, Servideo has put up a .415/.579/.755 line, with 3 2B, 5 HR, his 13 SO are a concern for a SS, but 19 BB ease the concern.
Oklahoma’s left-handed pitcher, Levi Prater, has a lower profile than possible First Rounder, Cade Cavalli as the Saturday Night Pitcher for the Sooners. Prater usually sits 93-95, and by the end of his start is in the same realm, typically dropping into the 91-93 range, while flashing three average or better pitches and a very starter friendly delivery. Like most sub 6’0 pitchers, Prater is underappreciated, and he’s just one of a million reasons I love small Pitchers.
The Biggest Risers
LHP Reid Detmers, Louisville (No. 15 to No. 7)
C Patrick Bailey, North Carolina State (No. 9 to No. 6)
RHP Max Meyer, Minnesota (No. 19 to No. 11)
SS Nick Loftin, Baylor (No. 88 to No. 42)
SS Anthony Servideo, Ole Miss (No. 140 to No. 80
LHP Levi Prater, Oklahoma (NR to No. 89)
RHP Bryce Jarvis, Duke (No. 145 to No. 97)