It’s been a month since my last mock draft and in that short time, the MLB Draft has been completely changed. Somehow in the midst of all this chaos, the draft has become even more of a crapshoot than it already was. Like my last mock draft, this one will be based on what I think other teams will do – whether that be based on past tendencies or behind-the-scenes rumblings, the whole premise is to predict who’ll be taken. I’ll repeat myself, this is not based on what I would do, but what I think the front offices would do. Player profile comparisons will be provided as well. If you want deep player write-ups, I suggest you read my last mock draft as this one will be to the point and much shorter.
OF Austin Martin, Vanderbilt
Elite Hitter, check. Defensive flexibility, check. Long track record of success at the highest level (SEC) of amateur baseball, check. Martin might not have the power that Torkelson possesses, or the jaw-dropping numbers that Nick Gonzales has posted – but he checks nearly every box a first overall pick could cross-out. I don’t think Detroit should have to spend much time on this pick, Martin just makes too much sense.
Comp: Bo Bichette Bat / Dansby Swanson Track Record
1B Spencer Torkelson, Arizona State
Is he a Right-Handed First Baseman? Yes. Do I care? Not even the slightest. He broke Barry Bonds’ (Arizona State) home run record as a freshman. He was going to become the all-time Sun Devils home run leader until the season was canceled. Somebody is going to have to complement Adley Rutschman in the Orioles lineup and Torkelson is as good of a candidate as you could ask.
Comp: Luke Voit Body / Andrew Vaughn Bat / Mike Trout Finish
LHP Asa Lacy, Texas A&M
A hot start to the 2020 season saw Lacy’s name get bumped from first round talent to a sure-fire top 5 talent. The Aggie features the best two-pitch mix in the class with a near double-plus-slider and a fastball with heavy spin/carry. Though his delivery doesn’t look like that of a long-term starter, the stuff will play against big league hitters.
Comp: Michael Wacha arm-slot / Robbie Ray Delivery
2B Nick Gonzales, New Mexico State
Once a ‘wait-and-see’ fancy numbers guy, Gonzales went to the Cape Cod League and shut everybody up, the Aggie has had unprecedented success at New Mexico State and it shows with where he’s been projected to be taken. With Hancock still on the board, the Royals have choices here but the bat of Gonzales is too valuable to pass up here for GMDM & co.
Comp: Keston Hiura / Nick Madrigal
RHP Emerson Hancock, Georgia
In my last mock draft Nick Gonzales fell to them and in this one my top pitcher and no. 3 player in the class falls to them. The Blue Jays, sitting at the tail end of the top 5 are the last lucky team to get a member of the (now) perceived “Big Five” and Hancock is a huge get for a team that loses Nate Pearson in a still deep pipeline.
Comp: Casey Mize / Stephen Strasburg Stuff
OF Garrett Mitchell, UCLA
The only thing stopping Garrett Mitchell from being the most talented player in the class is type one diabetes and raw power that he still hasn’t tapped into. The Bruin & USA Alum has every tool in the box and numerous in the plus-area including his arm, power, and speed. Mitchell becomes the sixth straight college player taken in a highly-touted college pool.
Comp: Kevin Pillar / David Dahl
OF Austin Hendrick, West Allegheny HS
Having the choice between two extremely talented pennsylvanian prep prospects – in Austin Hendrick and Nick Bitsko – is something the Pirates haven’t had the luxury of in past years. The highs-and-lows of Hendricks’ game bothers some teams, but a team like the Pirates that begins a new regime under Steve Sanders & Ben Cherington could be looking to add one of the most exciting players in Hendrick.
Comp: Cody Bellinger Shades / Shoeni Ohtani Swing
OF Zac Veen, Spruce Creek HS
No team enjoys the rewards and risks of a high schooler like the San Diego Padres. Veen’s spring rise has seen him move into top 5 talk and put him as the no. 1 high schooler on most boards. The lengthy outfielder has a natural feel for the bat and power that’s still growing.
Comp: Nick Markakis / Drew Waters Body
LHP Reid Detmers, Louisville
When you play at Coors Field, pitchers are a must and this year’s draft is a great opportunity for an organization that’s struggled badly to find competent arms. Detmers is literally a copied-and-pasted Brendan McKay, like it’s actually awesome how similar the two are. Thanks to one of the best curveballs in the class, Detmers lands in the top 10 to a team craving for pitchers like him.
Comp: Brendan McKay
C Patrick Bailey, North Carolina State
Switch-hitting catchers with above average defensive actions are as rare as finding toilet paper at your local grocery store. Like Adley Rutchsman, Bailey possesses natural hitting abilites from both sides of the plate and has even outperformed the 2019 1st Overall pick in Home Run totals the past two years. Finding a talented hitter at the most sought after position in Patrick Bailey and getting him at the tail end of the top 10 is a great get for an organization that looks to be turning a corner in a so far disappointing Mike Trout Era.
Comp: Andrew Knizner
RHP Cole Wilcox, Georgia
If you tuned into Wilcox’s starts this year, you might’ve questioned who really was the best pitcher on UGA’s staff. The Mid-90’s righty supported a 1.57 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, and 12.5 K/9. Yeah, he was legit, and he faced the exact same lineups as projected fifth-overall pick, Emerson Hancock. While he lacks a plus-secondary, the CB and CH show flashes and the horizontal break that he creates from an ideal ¾’s slot generates heavy spin which could lead to a growth of a capable SL and would in part make his four-pitch mix more than capable of going through MLB lineups.
Comp: Robert Tyler
RHP CJ Van Eyk, Florida State
While he hasn’t put up the numbers that Hancock, Lacy, etc have, Van Eyk has some of the best stuff in the class – flashing three plus pitches, though rarely all at the same time. If CJ can put it all together there’s a legitimate chance he can follow the path that ex-Seminole Luke Weaver has already traveled.
Comp: Luke Weaver
LHP Garrett Crochet, Tennessee
The Giants & college prospects go together like Madison Bumgarner & the postseason. Crochet, a high-90’s lefty was impressive in his one appearance during the shortened ‘20 season, flashing two plus pitches with skills best suited for progressive organizations. Following up the selections of Joey Bart and Hunter Bishop with the upside of Garrett Crochet is how you kick start another Giants dynasty.
Comp: MacKenzie Gore Delivery / Jake Diekman
RHP Carmen Mlodzinski, South Carolina
If you’re a fan of a prospect, the last place you want him to end up is in the Rangers farm. Few teams have failed as miserably as them and prep prospects shouldn’t even be in consideration when they’re on the board. Mlodzinski, a sophomore eligible (redshirt) righty was alongside Nick Gonzales as the top prospects in the Cape Cod over the summer and saw his name appear in mid first round talks.
Comp: Clarke Schmidt
RHP Max Meyer, Minnesota
There’s nothing I enjoy more than a flame-throwing righty with repeatable mechanics, a whippy arm, and all-around athletic actions. I’ve been a big fan of the Golden Gopher since my first mock draft last summer, after a jaw-dropping start to the year where he was sitting 97-99, and topping out at 100 in the first few innings. The secondaries are still behind but he works with a similar two pitch-mix to Asa Lacy, with a slightly above average slider that works as his out pitch.
Comp: Sonny Gray
OF Heston Kjerstad, Arkansas
When in doubt, take a college player. That motto seems reliable in this year’s class and no left-handed hitter has more power than Arkansas’ run generator, Heston Kjerstad. Though he swings-and-misses way more than normal, the power is abundant and he has above average abilites in right field with a near plus-arm.
Comp: Griffin Conine
RHP Mick Abel, Jesuit HS
Boston hasn’t selected this high since 2016 when they took prep arm, Jay Groome. Like Groome, Abel has a highly projectable 6’6/180 frame with two plus-pitches. The Texas arm has battled fellow Texas pitcher Jared Kelley his entire high school career as the top pitcher in the state, while it’s close, Abel’s ability to command all four pitches is impossible to pass up on.
Comp: Cole Winn
SS Ed Howard, Mount Carmel HS
They stole Corbin Carroll last year, and yet again snag the top player at a premium position. Like Carroll, Howard has lots of tools, with the hit tool being the highest (55 grade). He’s an above average defender and could be Nick Ahmed’s replacement though the glove is a good bit behind.
Comp: Alexei Ramirez
RHP Tanner Burns, Auburn
This makes it the third straight time I’ve had the Auburn righty landing in the Big Apple. Working with a limited body, Burns has put up as deep as a track record in the SEC as you’d expect. A low-90’s fastball and 6’0/215 frame hasn’t stopped him from throwing nearly 200 IP and having a sub 3.00 (or close to) ERA against the most trying competition an amateur could face.
Comp: Rick Porcello
SS Casey Martin, Arkansas
Spending the 20th overall pick on a player with the upside of Casey Martin is how you land a franchise altering player, while also taking on heavy risk. The mistake prone shortstop is a strikeout and error machine, but has some of the best power at the position in this draft. While his future position is unclear, he has options thanks to plus plus speed.
Comp: Oscar Merchado
3B Jordan Walker, Decatur HS
I can’t think of a better organization for a prospect as raw and unfinished as Jordan Walker to end up in. The Cardinals, behind maybe Houston and Tampa Bay are one of the best places to end up as an amateur prospect. Walker’s raw power is of the highest marks in this year’s class, trailing only Austin Hendrick. While there are concerns, his ability to hit the ball hard and far is the only thing that matters.
Comp: Jayson Werth / Cameron Maybin
RHP Cade Cavalli, Oklahoma
At this point you might as well just put a dozen college pitchers into a hat and pull a name out. There’s still plenty of first round arms available and Cavalli might be the icing on the top at this point in the draft. The power-righty has grown so much as a pitcher, showing the ability to glovestrike his pitches, and a secondary pitch he can use behind in the count.
Comp: Alec Hansen
C Tyler Soderstrom, Turlock HS
It’s been a fun journey on the Soderstrom train this year and the Indians have been the final destination twice in seven mocks. The Turlock HS product has gone under-the-radar in part to living in such a small part of California – the offense first catcher will likely move away from catcher though he’s still athletic enough to play second, third or even the corner of the outfield. Unlike most teams, Cleveland hasn’t shied away from the risk of a high school catcher as they took prep catcher Bo Naylor 29th overall in 2018.
Comp: DJ LeMahieu
RHP Nick Bitsko, Central East Bucks HS
Recently 2021 reclassed prep arm, Nick Bitsko joins a fairly talented high school pitching class. The UVA Commit might be a tough sign, similar to the Vanderbilt & Florida signees. Bitsko works with an advanced repertoire, using four pitches, and flashing two plus offerings. The Rays might’ve found themselves a high end starter if they can continue to develop an already talented arm.
Comp: Trevor Bauer
2B Justin Foscue, Mississippi State
Foscue is this year’s Braden Shewmake, the Braves took Shewmake 21st overall in last year’s draft. Are you picking up what I’m laying down? Foscue is much more talented than Shewmake, though they share traits. The power-hitting middle infielder is a 2B at the next level and could end up being a 15-18 HR guy at a position that has some of the worst HR numbers in the league.
Comp: Braden Shewmake
RHP Cole Henry, LSU
My 29th overall pick in my last mock, Henry’s profile is impressive. The sophomore eligible Tiger put up some of the top numbers in the country as a Freshman. In four starts this past year, he boasted a 1.90 ERA, and .231 OBA. His 23 SO, 15 H, and 6 BB make it even better. The Athletics have lived off of college prospects, using 5 of their last 6 picks on the college side, so Henry makes sense.
Comp: Tommy Henry
RHP Tommy Mace, Florida
Minnesota pitcher Max Meyer isn’t on the board, so the Twins will have to take a different college arm. This one from the farthest southern state, and from the college that is as good as anybody in developing pitchers. Mace has a big frame, whippy arm, and repeatable mechanics with three usable pitches, so he’s basically your typical college pitching prospect.
Comp: Alex Faedo / Jackson Kowar
OF Daniel Cabrera, LSU
The last time New York took a college outfielder, they found themselves a perennial MVP Candidate, face of the franchise and game-wreaking offensive threat. Yes, I’m referring to 2013 1st Round Pick, Aaron Judge. While Cabrera is six inches shorter, he shares an exceptional ability to hit, though he doesn’t have the red flag swing-and-miss concerns that scouts placed on Aaron Judge.
Comp: Andrew Stevenson
RHP JT Ginn, Mississippi State
This is the biggest lottery ticket of the mock draft. A once top 10 projected pick, and 2018 30th Overall Pick – Ginn has already been drafted by LA, so he’ll have to approve being taken by them before the Dodgers can make this pick. Not only can he refuse the pick, he also is undergoing Tommy John Surgery within the month. With all of these risks, you know he has talent. A mid-90’s wipeout fastball and clean delivery are what makes him so desirable as a sophomore eligible prospect. The Dodgers will have to be okay with the health concerns before dropping seven-figures on the damaged goods, aka JT’s arm.
Comp: Jake Arrieta