2020 MLB Draft Prospects Chat (6/9/20)
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Our chat transcript:
Carlos Collazo: Good morning everyone! Hope you're all well. We have just one day until June 10. If for some reason you're sitting in this chat at 10 a.m. and haven't seen all of our draft preview content to get you ready, I would recommend checking out this link.
Carlos Collazo: We're planning on keeping this chat open all day, so I can hop in here and discuss the latest draft rumors and answer any last-minute questions you guys might have. I'm planning one more mock draft, which will come out at some point on Wednesday. Thanks to all of you for following along throughout this process!
Zac Veen (Florida):
- How fair are the Cody Bellinger and Christian Yelich comps I'm getting?
Carlos Collazo: I think in terms of comparing their actual swings they are fine comps. I see a lot of similarities there. But Veen is significantly more filled out and has more present power than both of those two players at the same time. Not to say he's going to be better than them, because Yellich and Bellinger obviously turned into better players than teams expected but I think that's a key difference in how they were evaluated around draft time.
- Hearing Cincinnati connected to any particular players at 12? First year in awhile there doesn't seem to be a consensus with who they are targeting in the 1st round.
Carlos Collazo: The reason for that is they picked at No. 2 twice, No. 5 once and No. 7 once in the last four years. Those picks are all significantly easier to get information on in terms of mock drafts. It's not a function of getting less information, but a function of where the team is picking. There's always less consensus as you get further down the board. We have them currently mocked with Hendrick and I could also see them going for Hassell if he's there, Patrick Bailey or one of the college arms on the board.
Roger (Washington DC):
- Where would you place the over/under on High School players drafted this week in total?
Carlos Collazo: There were 47 HS players selected in the top five rounds last year, 52 selected in 2018 and 66 selected in 2017. I would put the over/under at slightly below the average of those three years, let's say 49. And I would take the under. Perhaps I'm not aggressively reacting to this year's situation in setting that O/U; I could see an argument for it being in the 45-48 range. Mostly just guessing though.
Jamal (New York):
- How do you expect strategies to work for teams with no extra picks this year? Do you expect lots of senior signs, freeing up money to use for an extra higher profile player? Teams just use their 5% money for one additional over slot? Teams just taking college players with all 5 picks? If they do use senior signs, are they your 4th and 5th rounders? Or do you maybe use it on your 3rd or 4th, so you’ve got a solid amount heading into the 5th, to just go down the line with and get the highest guy on your board willing to accept it?
Carlos Collazo: I think this will vary significantly depending on the team. I don't think there's going to be one strategy that everyone in the industry follows. That's never the case. I would not expect a significant number of senior signs though. I would also be skeptical of a strategy that employed drafting a senior in the third round to save money for someone in the fifth. That seems backwards to me because you could lose out on a lot of the talent you were hoping to get in the first place.
- In a shortened draft, could you see a team "punting" a couple of picks to concentrate their cap on getting 2-3 high level guys? As a jays fan I would be ok with them punting even 3 picks in order to get two "stud" players.
Carlos Collazo: Yeah, I could see that happening for sure this year. I haven't heard any direct rumors about that with the Jays or any other team to this point, but it wouldn't be surprising. I think that's something a team might pivot to after seeing a player fall to them that they didn't expect to be there, but who they really like.
Jacob (Wilmington, NC):
- Mason Hickman is just too good to not get drafted this week, right?
Carlos Collazo: You would think so. He has a great track record of performing going back to his high school days, and has consistently put up good numbers with Vanderbilt over the last three years. He's got a 3.13 ERA over 189.2 innings for his career, and while the stuff isn't overpowering his command and ability to pitch stands out. At the same time, we have him ranked right on that borderline range where the draft ends this year.
- Carlos can you talk about Marquis Grissom Jr? Work Ethic, competitive attitude, and stuff are impressing me more and more but nobody has him listed in their top 200.
Carlos Collazo: I'm sorry that you think we are nobodies. We actually do have him ranked among the top 200. Check out the BA 500 here.
Carlos Collazo: I do like Grissom. He has one of the better changeups in this class, though I think he became overly reliant on the pitch at times last summer. It's a fringe-average fastball now, but I could easily see that ticking up to average or a tick better as he fills out and figures out how to utilize his lower half more efficiently. He's plenty athletic as well, as you might expect considering his father. Really good projection righthander.
Max (Kansas City, MO):
- What is your sense on how the quality of this draft class compares to recent years?
Carlos Collazo: This is the deepest class that I've covered since joining Baseball America before the 2017 draft. It's strong at at the top, and has good depth at the college level and the high school level in my opinion. It's very, very good.
Roger (Washington DC):
- SS Harold Coll seems to have an incredibly split opinion in various rankings. Is there something divisive about his toolset or is the lack of spring affecting how people see him more than maybe some of his contemporaries?
Carlos Collazo: Is he? We have him in the 500, but in the 300-400 range. Pipeline doesn't have him ranked in their 200 and ESPN doesn't have him in their 150. I can't speak to the process of those other outlets, but that doesn't really seem like a split opinion to me. I could be missing someone's. He has some interesting tools, but the scouts I've talked with are concerned about how those tools translate to game skill at the moment.
- The BA mock yesterday has Texas taking Sabato. Is there legit rumors about that or is it just a guess? Any other names y’all think Texas is heavily considering? Thanks!
Carlos Collazo: Felt pretty good about that one actually, more so than some of the other names in the middle of the first round. I do think they like him.
Dwayne (Greensburg, PA):
- Are teams regulated to offering only $20k to undrafted players this year or can they increase the offers if they wish to expand their budget by the 5% allowed without penalty just like under the old rules?
Carlos Collazo: Nope, $20K is the cap on undrafted players.
- Any chance the Pirates draft Dylan Crews anyways and try and massively overs-lot sign him like they did Josh Bell?
Carlos Collazo: Crews took himself out of the draft last week, so no team can draft him. He'll be going to LSU. Here's more on that if you missed it.
Tim (Temperance MI):
- Casey Martin is available to the Tigers at the top of the 2nd is that a hitter they could take and us Tigers fans watch him, Riley Greene, and Spencer Torkelson hold down the 2-3-4 spots in our lineup for years to come?
Carlos Collazo: I think there's a decent chance he's available at that pick actually. Not sure if the Tigers would pounce (ha ha, get it?). I would also hesitate to project Martin in that sort of spot in a big league lineup at this point. I would need to see a lot of improvement in his offensive approach at the next level before I thought about that. Though if he does hit, you've got a pretty good player on your hands.
- After reading a lot of the scouting reports in the BA500 a player in the round 2/3 range that intrigues me is Casey Schmitt. Seems he has a good combination of both ceiling and floor. Do teams have him ranked roughly where BA does? A viable 3B and reliever seems very valuable for modern teams. I would love the Nationals to pick him up after the inevitable Cole Wilcox selection to bolster their farm's position player depth, which is sorely needed.
Carlos Collazo: Well, we try and line up our board entirely based on feedback from the industry, so I think so, though like every year some teams are higher or lower than the consensus (where there is a consensus). I personally like him as a hitter more and do like the all-around profile. I'd rather let him just focus on being a position player at the next level.
- What’s the latest rumors you’ve heard connected to the White Sox at 11?
Carlos Collazo: I'll direct you to yesterday's mock draft, which has this specific information in it.
Jim Wood (Jacksonville, FL):
- Are there any Jacksonville, FL area prospects for this years draft
Carlos Collazo: Yep! Colby Halter, Trent Palmer and Lebarron Johnson Jr. are all BA 500 guys and in the area.
- Can you compare Hancock and Meyer for those of us eagerly awaiting to see which one the Jays will pick (assuming Veen is taken). What kind of grades would you put on each for FB, SL/CB, CU, and command?
Carlos Collazo: Meyer has a more electric two pitch combo in his fastball and slider, but Hancock has the more traditional complete starter's profile with a deeper pitch mix and better command. We broke down all the tools of the top players in each position group. You can see the righthanders here, and check out each of the specific tool grades for Hancock and Meyer, as well as the other top RHPs.
- Which college starter is most likely to make it to Toronto's pick at 42? Jarvis, Miller, Shuster, Beeter, or Henry?
Carlos Collazo: The college starters have been exceptionally difficult to figure out, because there are so many who are thought of in a similar range. I could see all of those guys being gone before the Blue Jays pick there. In fact, in our most recent mock, we have all of those guys off the board before the first comp round ends... It seems reasonable to think one could get there but I couldn't tell you which one is most likely. Jarvis might be the least likely.
- Is there a limit on how many 20K guys a team can sign? Do they have to stay in their budget allotment?
Carlos Collazo: There's no limit to UDFA signees. Teams can sign as many as they like.
Andrew Friedman (LA):
- Why does BA have us taking Tucker in round 1 in Mock 7? We are signing Wilman Diaz as our top International Prospect - a young SS. Seems like we have other needs than a very young SS. Are you thinking because we lost Downs to the Red Sox?
Carlos Collazo: I don't think teams draft for need like that in the first round. It wouldn't make much sense at all to do that, particularly when we're talking about teenage players here. A lot changes in five years. Also, you can never have enough shortstops.
Joe H (Syracuse NY):
- Braces are rumored to be targeting high school players later in the draft. Are they connected with any high school players that are predicted to go third round or later?
Carlos Collazo: Assuming you're talking about the Braves here. I haven't heard them connected to any players specifically in the 3 round and later range. That would be tough in a normal year, and it's especially true this year without getting information on which evaluators are going to which games. I will be happy if I feel good about the information I have at the back of the first round, let alone the rounds to follow.
Roger (Greenville, SC):
- If a team punts a top 10 pick, who is it, who do they burn the pick on, and does it lead to rule changes down the road? I'd feel terrible for the player.
Carlos Collazo: I've been asking around about this rumor after I saw it pop up today. Most of the people who I've spoken with haven't heard about it at all and think it's more smoke than anything. Some have said they've heard it, but I don't feel good enough about the info to mention the team. If a team would actually be punting on the pick it doesn't really matter who the player is. Doing something like this would be a huge slap in the face to your entire scouting staff, the players in the draft class and your fanbase, in my opinion. I'm not convinced at this point it is going to happen or is even real. It seems too outrageous.
Indiana Cardinal (Lowell, IN):
- Setting aside that teams drafting after the first handful of picks do not know who will necessarily be available, and thus can not hint where their interest lies at the current time, are there certain teams that historically and currently are more "close to the vest"/secretive? Can you name some of those teams? Also do teams give prospect reporters, such as yourself, "head fakes" or misinformation as to their interest in certain players to misdirect other teams away from which player has their true interest? Thanks for your hard work this draft season.
Carlos Collazo: This is a fun one, because it ties into a lot of the work I'm currently doing right now. I rarely ever ask a team specifically who they are going to pick because they're not going to sit there and tell me yes or no. That doesn't benefit them. It's more useful to try and see if they have a feel for who's going in front of them, who they expect to make it to their pick, who teams around them are targeting, etc. In those situations I can let them know who I'm hearing in front of their pick and sometimes a name will pop up that is surprising (or not) for them. As for the head fakes and misinformation, I'm sure that happens and comes from both sides (team and advisors). However, we do have ongoing relationships with all of these guys, so I don't think many people just blatantly lie about things because if they did that consistently the trust would just dissipate. Hope that helps answer your question.
Carlos Collazo: All right guys, I'm going to hop out for a bit to jump on some more calls and tape a quick piece with MLBNetwork. I think JJ might stop by to take some questions, but we'll keep this running the entire day.
- If you had a hundred poker chips and were betting: how many chips would you put on Austin Martin/Nick Gonzales/Zac Veen going #2 to the O’s?
J.J. Cooper: Hey guys, Carlos tagged me in for a few minutes here. I would go 60 chips on Martin, 30 on Gonzales and 5 on Veen and 5 on the field.
- If you had to put a percentage on the chances of Hendrick getting to Starkville...
J.J. Cooper: Hard to see it. I guess crazier things have happened but mid-first round HS bats almost never make it to school. From a simple cost/benefit analysis, it's hard to make the case for school if Hendrick is going to go in the teens of the first round. We have him currently mocked to the Reds at 12. But let's say the draft doesn't break well for him and he slides to 17, 18 or 19. At pick 19, slot would be $3.36 million. That's life-changing, set for life money for pretty much anyone. He could head to school and theoretically turn himself into a top five pick in a few years, but the difference between $6 million and $3.3 million in my estimation is way different than the difference between $3.3 million and $600,000 (if Hendrick fell to the early third round). There has been exactly one high school position player picked in the first round who has gone unsigned (Matt McLain) in the eight drafts since the slot system went into place in 2012.
Willie Hood (Ohio):
- How will teams trying to float picks be impacted by teams like CLE and TB sandwiched between their picks?
J.J. Cooper: It depends on what kind of asking prices are we talking about-$3 million may be doable but $3.5-4 million would be very tough. The Indians and Rays total pools make it a little tougher for them to try to snag guys sliding IMO if sliding means a player gets to pick 25. If the Indians or Rays wanted to take a high-asking price guy at pick 23 (Indians) or 24 (Rays), they then could retool who they take with their supplemental first round and second round picks to clear the money to sign that player. But if they take a non-underslot deal at pick 23/24, it would become much harder to clear enough money over the rest of their draft to compete with what an Os, Rockies, Royals or Pirates could offer in the supplemental round unless the Rays or Indians decided to turn their five-round draft into two big money deals and a whole lot of senior signs. If the Indians/Rays went slot with their first round pick, their total remaining draft pool would be $4.7 million for the Indians and $4.6 million for the Rays. That's a good bit, but the Orioles, Royals, Pirates and Padres will all have $5.5 million or more left to spend even if they signed their first pick for full slot.
- On average, how many undrafted free agents do you see teams signing? Any teams being more aggressive with that than others?
J.J. Cooper: Wait I'm JJ from Georgia and I didn't ask this question. I think we'll see a massive variance. Everything is rumor at this point, but I've heard scouts who think some teams will completely sit out on NDFAs while others will be quite aggressive. The biggest issue for all teams will be potential roster limits for 2021. Nothing has been finalized yet, but there is every expectation that MiLB will be cut to 120 teams in full season ball plus potentially only one complex league team in the AZL or GCL. In the most extreme example (the Yankees) that would mean they would go from having two GCL teams, an Appy League team and a NYP team to having one GCL team. That's roughly 100 roster spots that are gone for 2021. Teams are not allowed to have players just floating around in extended spring--they all are on some team's roster whether it be LoA or rookie ball, so there potentially will be a real numbers crunch that will limit NDFA's opportunities in some ways.
- I have two questions... 1) Is there somewhere I can find an archive of your 2020 mocks i.e. from 1.0 through to 7.0 today as it seems to have the same link for all of them. 2) At what point in this draft do you think we start to see the run on seniors who can be had for lower signing bonuses?
J.J. Cooper: We'll try to get a post of this up later today. Good idea. I think fourth/fifth round but I think you could also see juniors who are signable going for underslot deals in those rounds as well.
- The Yankees haven’t had a first round pick pan out since Jeter (Judge was a comp pick), knowing this, shouldn’t the Yankees stop taking “toolsy” up the middle guys, and go for a safe college SP, who may not be a star, but highly likely to be a reliable 3/4SP, and then take the risk in round two with Blaze Jordan?
J.J. Cooper: Judge was an actual first round pick, not a supplemental first round pick so he does count as a first rounder and Ian Kennedy has had a solid career as did Phil Hughes and Eric Milton so I wouldn't go back to Jeter--I think your expectations for what a team can get at the back of the first round (where the Yankees often pick) needs to be lowered a little. But yes, the Yankees have had a pretty rough record with first round picks in the 2000s. But they have had struggles whatever approach they have taken. Kaprelian was a semi-safe college SP as was Clarke Schmidt. They haven't just taken toolsy up the middle guys. I also don't think Blaze Jordan will be a second round pick.
- In your opinion, would you rather have Abel or Bitsko? Who do you think has the higher floor/ceiling? Hoping Boston can get one of them.
J.J. Cooper: Abel has a lot of the attributes I love to see in a high school pitcher. He's a pitcher who keeps developing velocity with an already demonstrated ability to refine his pitches and a demonstrable work-ethic as a gym-rat (is facility-rat a more accurate term nowadays). I know the track record on HS RHPs in the first round is bad, but if you're going to take one, where teams have gotten into trouble is drafting for present velocity more than projection/pitchability/athleticism. Abel has all three of those attributes (and yes, he does have present velo too).
Jacob (Wilmington, NC):
- George Springer + Hunter Pence = Hudson Haskin?
J.J. Cooper: If Haskin can be that combo, he will be a very rich man one day. I really like Haskin's tools and like Pence he does do it at times a little unconventionally. I do wonder if this shortened draft means he makes it back to Tulane for another year, where he might get a chance to show he's made a big step forward. With a full season he could be a significantly higher pick next year.
Bob Wagner (Oakland, CA):
- Could a team sign an undrafted for the obligatory 20K, then place him on active ML roster where he has to be paid at least the minimum salary?
J.J. Cooper: There would be a massive MLB investigation immediately, as teams are not allowed to promise a player a spot on the MLB roster at any point in the future as an inducement to sign. Such a move would likely be assumed to be a circumvention of the rules immediately, and then the team would have to prove that somehow this was all above board. If it was proven that such a roster spot had been promised to convince the player to sign, it is likely the MLB team would face significant penalties and potentially the suspension/firing of front office officials. The most significant thing that has come from the recent Astros penalties is the idea that GMs can be held responsible for the actions of their underlings. As I have heard scouts tell me, they have been told by their bosses "I'm not looking to be fired because someone below me wanted to break the rules." That said, it also makes no sense. 40-man roster spots are very valuable. If you like a guy that much, you're WAY better off drafting him in the fifth round and then signing him for $150K rather than wasting a 40-man roster spot for multiple years--remember if you remove him from the 40-man later you could lose him to any other team. I am surprise that as of yet, I have not hear of an MLB team deciding to offer an across the board inducement for all their MiLB players (I suggested a housing stipend). No extra inducements can be given to sign an NDFA, but you can raise what you spend on all MiLB players and then use that as an inducement to convince players to sign since it applies to all players in the organization.
Wally (The Green Monster):
- Tyler Sordestrom to the Red Sox what do I have to do to make it happen?
J.J. Cooper: At this moment I think he's off the board before then.
Jeff (Sandusky, OH):
- Who will teams look back on as a mid to late first rounder five years from now and say “damn, we should’ve taken him higher!”?
J.J. Cooper: My answer is Tennessee LHP Garrett Crochet. If this had been a normal year and he had gotten 10 starts, I think he could have pitched his way into top five consideration. This isn't a normal year and he threw three innings all spring before the COVID-19 shutdown. Crochet didn't get a chance to show he can start all spring, which was important to answering some team's questions and he had shoulder soreness as well. But if all of that is noise, I think five years from now we could look back and wonder how he didn't go in the top 10 picks in this draft.
- Make me feel good about the Sox taking Mick Abel at 17
J.J. Cooper: If he's still on the board at 17 that would be excellent value for the pick. That said, I think that's about the absolute low end of where Abel will go and it wouldn't surprise me to hear his name called 45 minutes or an hour earlier in tomorrow's telecast.
Chris (Nebo, NC):
- You mentioned various teams may entirely pass on signing NDFAs - shouldn't we expect the Braves to be particularly active with these guys given the holes they'll need to fill at the lower levels because of the international penalties?
J.J. Cooper: They would be a team who has probably more reasons to go NDFA crazy than almost anyone. They have a LOT of roster spots in the lower levels of the system. The international penalties have thinned out the system in many ways and even their draftees have been fast movers in many cases. They can legitimately sell teams on having spots/opportunities for their class A teams for 2021.
- What are the chances that Hassell makes it the Angels at #10? Are the Padres only interested in him as an underslot option?
J.J. Cooper: I would say there is a very good chance. Everyone I talk to has a group of 8-9 players they expect to see gone in the top 10 picks. After that, there are a whole lot of options. Hassell fits well in the group of HS bats that fit in that 10-15 range. There are a couple of HS arms that could start to go off the board in that range (7-15) too and maybe a college arm or too. What really happens is once you get past Heston Kjerstad there is a pretty sizable gap to the next college bat.
- Collin Dingler which teams have him in their mix? There is not even a ton of video of him out there but sounds like he is a big mover.
J.J. Cooper: I assume you mean Dillon Dingler. I think he fits anywhere in the 20-35 range. Very athletic catcher who has played some outfield (center field) earlier in his Ohio State career. His athleticism reminds me a little of Daulton Varsho, another athletic catcher who can run who has started to play some center field to add to his versatility.
J.J. Cooper: We're going to take a quick lunch break but will be back around 2 p.m. or so. Keep your questions coming in as we're going to be answering plenty more.
Carlos Collazo: Hey guys, hopping back in the chat seat for a bit. Thanks to JJ for coming in and spreading his wisdom for a bit. This is the biggest queue of questions I've ever seen in a draft chat by the way, so I appreciate and love the enthusiasm!
Carlos Collazo: Oh, I saw JJ mentioned this was a lunch break. I still have to find something to eat at some point. We'll chat on however, your hunger for draft intel is more ravenous than my hunger for food.
Jacob (Wilmington, NC):
- Odds of Austin Wells being available at #29 for the Dodgers?
Carlos Collazo: 50-50 maybe? It's hard to say in that range. I personally would think his bat is good enough that he should be gone before that pick, but his name hasn't been mentioned a ton lately in my conversations, so I'm not sure.
- Do you envision Jordan Walker and Carson Montgomery getting to campus? What are their numbers and is it unlikely teams will be able to satisfy them?
Carlos Collazo: I think there are enough teams who are into Walker's bat/power upside who could take a shot on him. I would imagine it's less likely that Walker gets to school than Montgomery, who I could see blending in a bit more with the prep arms in his range and making it to Florida State. With a deep class of college arms, I wouldn't be surprised to see a ton of really talented prep pitchers make it to campus this year.
- Is Hancock and a HS player the likely scenario for the Pirates tomorrow?
Carlos Collazo: I could see this happening for sure. Hancock is regularly talked about in that range and I think 5-7 is his sweet spot. They are one of several clubs who I would be on the lookout to go for an overslot deal with a high-upside prep in the comp round. They could get their pocket picked by the Orioles, who pick at 30 right in front of them and have the biggest bonus pool, but the Pirates have the 5th most money to spend and should be able to throw some weight around as well.
- How high can you see Wilcox going? I know the bargaining chips are in his corner due to everything, and there are question marks on delivery. But pure stuff and strike out numbers make him hard to overlook
Carlos Collazo: I know there are some clubs who like him in the 10-20 range, but I haven't heard specifically if they would jump him over some of the others names that are more commonly floated in that range. I think the 20s are more likely, but again that college pitching group has been difficult to sus out. You are definitely betting on some upside with him, and he was off to a good start this spring.
- Any truth to rumors connecting the Angels to Ed Howard at #10? If so would this be an underslot deal?
Carlos Collazo: I heard that rumor a few weeks ago, but I don't think it has a ton of traction right now. Most people I've talked with expect him to be available after that pick. If they did take him there I would imagine it's an underslot deal, yes.
- What are your thoughts of s Fl kids that have a chance in this draft , Manning, Morales , Mediros , Mayo, Rosario ? Who gets draft who goes to college ??
Carlos Collazo: Could see all of them getting to campus to be honest with you. They're in a range deep enough where teams could get scared of their price tags and they're all talented enough to go to college and come out after a few years of development with greatly improved stocks. I haven't heard specific buzz with any of them linked to teams... though that definitely doesn't mean it's not happening.
Johnny Bench (Cooperstown):
- Is Patrick Bailey the best catcher in this years draft? Where does he end up in the first round?
Carlos Collazo: Yes. We have him ranked 14 and I would be surprised to see him fall much further than that. I'd guess somewhere in the top 15, towards the back end of that range. Definitely a chance to sneak into the back of the top 10 in a spot similar to Shea Langeliers a year ago. He's pretty well-rounded and MLB clubs love college catchers.
Jack (New York):
- What has been the best thing you've gained from doing a draft prep without games? What will you bring from this into future draft preps?
Carlos Collazo: Love this question. We've been able to iterate with our draft rankings a bit more this year because there are no games to go to (which is the entire point of all of this, but takes up a lot of time). I think that has allowed them to be more accurate and complete, so in the future, I would love to be able to continue iterating and updating more frequently in order to capture all the industry feedback we get. I think it's easier for players to slide through the cracks or you could miss a change that took place with the player or the industry's opinion on a player by waiting a long time in-season to update rankings.
Carlos Collazo: At first I was pretty surprised when opinions on players changed really quickly in what I felt were small samples, but that is the nature of covering the draft when all these players are still growing and developing at a pretty rapid pace. Maniacally tweaking and updating and refining our internal running list of players will help provide a better product, I think. At least I hope that's the case.
- I've heard the Yankees linked to so many players. Have you heard them connected at all to Jordan Walker?
Carlos Collazo: Picking 28 this year will do that. It's been tough to get any hard information on teams in the 20s because of no games. Last year I felt pretty good about the Anthony Volpe connection to New York, and that was based specifically on information about evaluators watching him during the spring. That information doesn't exist this year, whether or not I have the ability to uncover it. I think most teams in the 15+ range are operating with a greater sense of unknown and just seeing what falls to them. I do think that's generally true for most years, but especially this year.
Michael Smith (Lake Louise):
- Hey Carlos If you were running the blue jays who would you take out of Meyer Gonzalez andHancock ? Thank you
Carlos Collazo: I think I'd be inclined to take the bat, but I really like Hancock and Meyer. It's close. Tough decision for sure. I'm glad I'm not the one making them!
- Last year the Royals swarmed college pitching, do you think their approach this year would be more focused on hitting?
Carlos Collazo: I don't know that they would be opposed to collecting more arms further down in the draft, and I've actually heard them linked to more pitchers than hitters lately after their first pick. Still think a bat is likely for them at No. 4 though. The Royals have swarmed college pitching for a few years now.
- What’s the latest on Emerson Hancock? Any chance he falls out of the top 10?
Carlos Collazo: I don't think so, but I also thought the same thing about Brady Singer and Matthew Liberatore a few years ago. You never really know. He's not going to be mocked outside of the top 10 for me tomorrow though, if that answers the question.
- In the staff draft for BAL you went Martin, Sabato, Parada. If everything fell into place perfectly what would be your ideal scenario for BAL in this draft?
Carlos Collazo: If everything fell into place perfectly for Baltimore they would get Spencer Torkelson with their first pick, Austin Martin with their second pick and Asa Lacy with their third. We certainly don't live in a perfect world and that's never going to happen. More realistically, they get Martin at 2, he turns out to be better than Torkelson and the best player in the class, they get a high-upside prep arm to their comp pick and whoever that is doesn't bust and becomes a great MLB pitcher and they find an excellent value in the third as well.
John (Findlay, Ohio):
- Who are some of the possible players the Cleveland Indians could be targeting at pick 23?
Carlos Collazo: If any of the prep players in front of them falls to that spot they would be picks that make a lot of sense considering what Cleveland has done in recent years.
Tyler (San Diego):
- Are you able to speak about Cavalli’s fastball. I’ve heard it has movement and there is some deception and high end velocity so there is a little puzzlement in the industry as to why it’s currently a little hittable. I’m just regurgitating Law and others so do you have any thoughts? PS Great job on Soxprospects the other day much appreciated:)
Carlos Collazo: I've heard mixed reports on his fastball. I think the data on the fastball is good and lately I've heard analytical departments are excited about the pitch. However I saw him last summer and the pitch was pretty flat and got hit around at high velocities. I don't see a ton of deception and that's the feedback that I got from scouts as well... It could be a case where analytics people see some underlying trait that they like, and teams think they can create more movement or help him take another step with the pitch at the next level. Personally, I didn't see a pitch with a lot of movement and I think his arm action is so clean it hurts his deception instead of helping it.
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- Are there any players who could drop significantly on the night? I have seen that there are concerns with Garrett Mitchell's medical
Carlos Collazo: That could happen. I've heard mixed feedback on Mitchell specifically, as I mentioned in Mock V 7.0. I think teams are split on him. He's a wildcard.
- Hi Chris, with Dayton Moore’s commitment to his minor leaguers, do you think the royals will be able to do well with signing quality undrafted free agents? Thanks for all of your great work!
Carlos Collazo: Yes, I think this would be one of the bigger factors for UDFAs this year. More teams should be doing that. It's frustrating they don't.
Roger (Washington DC):
- What's likelihood that TJ guys Ginn and Fulton end up signing in this draft?
Carlos Collazo: Ginn is another wild card. I've recently heard some more buzz about Fulton that'll be in tomorrow's mock draft... Both are probably in play enough that they could sign despite the surgeries.
ryan (clinton, ma):
- snapple raspberry iced tea is delicious.
Carlos Collazo: This is absolute blasphemy. I'm currently in Secaucus and can't find solid sweet tea to save my life. I thought seeing the Arizona branded bottles in a store was going to save me, but they were all either some berry-flavored tea, unsweet or an Arnold Palmer. Let's hold the draft in NC next year so I can get my bbq and sweet tea fix.
Indiana Cardinal (Lowell, IN):
- Do you have both a college and a high school pitcher, generally thought of as being outside the top 100, who really intrigue you as potentially being much more highly rated after a couple of years as a pro? Thank you for your thoughts and efforts for Baseball America.
Carlos Collazo: Koen Moreno has long been one of my favorite prep arms.... He's uber athletic, is a great mover on the rubber and was taking all the right steps forward last year in every outing. I like the movement on his FB and his natural feel to spin. That's my prep pick. Wonder if a team signs him out of ECU, I could see that happening... My college arm is maybe Long Beach State lefty Adam Seminaris. He's just a really advanced pitcher. Thanks for the question and thanks for reading, we appreciate it!
Carlos Collazo: All right, now I need to get some food. We'll take a bit of a break here. Somehow there are MORE comments in the queue now than when I took over for JJ. Not sure how that's possible, but it's a testament to you guys. You're just as crazy about the draft as everyone at BA—and for that, I salute you.
- Do you think the Rangers draft strategy has changed? Last year they drafted safer college bats in Jung and Wendzel and Sabato was mocked to them in your latest mock. It seems like a complete switch from the kinds of players they drafted in the past.
Carlos Collazo: Based on who they went after last year there might be a bit of a shift... They took many more college players than they had in the previous three drafts. Check out their recent draft history here in our MLB Draft Database. I was struck by the number of college players a year ago... perhaps that's just coincidental.
Kyle Glaser: Hey everyone, I'm jumping in to give Carlos and J.J. a breather for a little bit. Look forward to talking about actual players and teams and on-the-field stuff rather than disagreements about money. Let's get to it.
- It seems that PCA has been tied to the Red Sox frequently, but now there seems to be chatter that PCA may be gone by pick 17. If PCA has already been selected, do you think the Red Sox would simply look at the top prep bat available?
Kyle Glaser: The Red Sox are one of the few teams that haven't really had an identifiable type or preference at the top of the draft the last few years. I wouldn't limit them to just taking the top prep bat available if Crow-Armstrong (or another highly regarded prep player) isn't there. We've seen them take just about every player type available the last few years.
Roger (Washington DC):
- It feels like after the trio of Lacy, Hancock, and Meyer, the college Pitching class doesn't have a ton of separation -- the difference between a Pitcher taken in the 10-15 range and some taken in the 40-50 range wont' be as great as normal years. Might that lead teams in that 10-20 range to look for a greater upside pick knowing there will be solid college Pitching options to come in later rounds rather than jumping after the Detmers, Crochet, Cavalli etc group?
Kyle Glaser: Detmers is pretty widely considered to be the clear No. 4 after those top three, so I think you could slide him in there. What you're talking about actually affects high school pitchers more than college pitchers. The separation within that group is way, way smaller than a lot of people realize, and that has been borne out with how high school pitchers drafted later have turned out better than early first round HS arms in recent years. That's the demographic, more than college arms, that will be pushed down due to lack of clear separation plus elevated risk. You can check out an article I wrote about that here.
- What have you heard for the tigers at 38 and 62? A college SS at 38 and O/S a prep player at 63? Thanks
Kyle Glaser: You can't put a lot of stock into rumors that late in the draft. Most teams have many, many options they like in those ranges and simply take whoever is still available. So much can happen in front of those picks, teams don't really lock onto one player in those spots because there is a very real chance that player will be gone. It sounds cliche, but it really is just going to be "best player available" that will sign, whoever that may be.
Lance (Cleveland Tn):
- Wilcox picking up steam to the cardinals at 21?
Kyle Glaser: The Cardinals went very pitching-heavy in last year's draft (8 of their first 11 picks), so it would make sense for them organizationally to load up on some bats in this year's draft. At the same time, if Wilcox is the best player available there when they pick, he's certainly a good option who will be in play.
Jammer (SD, CA):
- Any chance Nick Conte, HS pitcher in Rhode Island is drafted?
Kyle Glaser: Conte is a good athlete with good stuff, but smaller high school righthanders (he's 5-11, 185 pounds) generally have to go to college and prove it. Especially how risk-averse teams will likely be given the length of this draft, it would be a surprise to see him taken. Never say never, but that's generally how this plays out.
- If the Giants were to draft a hitter, where would you then rank their system in terms of offense?
Kyle Glaser: It would depend who that position player is, but a system with Marco Luciano, Joey Bart, Heliot Ramos, Hunter Bishop and another top-15 pick at the top would certainly be one of the better position player prospect groups I can think of off the top of my head.
- How much "good faith" manipulation can the commissioners office actually have on the draft order for 2021?
Kyle Glaser: If this ends up happening - the Commissioner setting the 2021 draft order as he's allowed to in consultation with the MLBPA if the season is fewer than 81 games - prepare for a complete lack of trust in the process if the order is anything other than the reverse of the year's standings. It's a setup ripe for corruption and favoritism.
- There has been a lot of buzz about the Braves being in on college arms - Jarvis, Beeter, McMahon, etc. - but is there any smoke about them being connected to bats (HS or college)? Jordan Walker perhaps?
Kyle Glaser: Again, a lot of the teams in that range are in on a bunch of different players. You can't lock on to one when you're in the 20s, because he may not be there. It's very likely they're legitimately on those college arms AND some HS bats. You have to keep as many options open as possible that far down in the first round.
- What are the chances control/command over power arms later in the draft get picked like Taylor Dollard, Mason Hickman or Braden Olthoff? Have you heard their names connected to any teams?
Kyle Glaser: Dollard is going to go, probably somewhere around the 4th or 5th round. Some teams were interested in Olthoff out of Palomar JC and now that he's shown it at the D1 level, albeit in a small sample, there is chance he gets taken as well. As for specific teams, again, trying to tie 4th-5th rounders to specific teams is a fool's errand. Most teams like those guys all in similar ranges. It's just about who all is available at that point.
- Is there anyone other than Torkelson still in the frame for the No.1 pick, this seems to have become the unanimous pick among writers but could the Tigers go elsewhere?
Kyle Glaser: The Tigers like Asa Lacy plenty as well. Him and Tork are the two they've long been tied to as options at No. 1. Austin Martin is a No. 1 overall pick caliber player in some people's eyes as well, but the Tigers have mostly been dialed in on Torkelson and Lacy as their options at No. 1.
Tiger James (Taylor, Michigan):
- Please tell me the Tigers are not going to pass on Torkelson. And what type of prospect could they get with the second round?
Kyle Glaser: Neither we at BA nor anyone we've spoken to believe the Tigers will pass on Torkelson at No. 1. Lacy is an option, but the overwhelming belief in the industry is Torkelson will be the pick. As for their second pick, players drafted No. 38 overall since 2000 include David Wright, Noah Syndergaard, Gio Gonzalez, Mitch Haniger, Michael Lorenzen and Kelly Johnson. There's always some future All-Stars and/or everyday players still hanging around in the 38-50 range.
Roger (Washington DC):
- This morning on Buster Olney's podcast Kiley McDaniel was talking about rumors of teams intentionally not spending whole pool (just offering hard ball offers to college juniors figuring they'll take it). And accepting that the game will ultimately suffer blowback in terms of labor strife. This is beyond "short-sighted" isn't it, and somewhere deep into realm of "self-inflicted wounds?"
Kyle Glaser: As the owners have shown with their approach toward negotiations with the MLBPA these last few weeks, short-sighted is their MO right now. They're more concerned about saving a few extra dollars in 2020 and can't seem to realize that by doing that, they're costing themselves tens of millions more in future years by failing to add potential impact players to their organization at a low cost or, more consequentially, failing to capitalize on the fact they could have had the eyes of the entire sports world all to themselves for a month or longer and attracted new fans who were desperate for live sports programming. Instead, they blew it because they can't seem to see past the calendar year 2020. It's shockingly poor business sense, but it shouldn't be a surprise. Short-term profits always take precedence even at the expense of long-term gains.
Not Tyler (San Diego):
- Do you have a Comp for PCA if the power he showed this spring is legit and he hits his ceiling? I’ve heard JBJ whom I love but I thought if it all broke right PCA would probably show a higher average and steal total than my man JBJ.
Kyle Glaser: I'm going to stay away from comps for now. Crow-Armstrong projects to be a better hitter than Jackie Bradley for sure though, somewhere in the .270 range who will surpass that in his best years.
- What do you think the chances are of the Orioles selecting Nick Gonzales over Austin Martin? (Assuming Tokrelson is off the board)
Kyle Glaser: Slim to none, based on everything I've heard. The Orioles are a very model-driven organization now, and most models penalize Gonzales because of New Mexico State (low-end mid-major pitching plus ridiculous offensive atmosphere). If the Tigers pick Torkelson, the Orioles are expected to go Martin. If the Tigers pick Lacy, the Orioles will jump on Torkelson.
Logan Field (Mi):
- Who are some late round sleepers
Kyle Glaser: By "late" I assume you mean 3rd-5th round in this draft. Adam Seminaris is a personal favorite of mine. I think he's going to end up in the majors and be a solid No. 4-5 lefthanded starter, which would be a pretty good get in the fourth or fifth round.
- You mentioned in the mock that Hassell might not be an underslot option at 8 if the Angels interested is legit at 10. If the Padres don’t go underslot who could they target at 8?
Kyle Glaser: Keep an eye on the top group of prep bats and Max Meyer if he's available.
- It's been mentioned that Soderstrom doesn't start at C on his team... Where does he play for his team and how do scouts feel about his ability at 3B/OF?
Kyle Glaser: He's a good athlete who has shown well at 3B when put out there and he has the speed to cover enough ground in the outfield. There's not really any concerns about his ability to play another position. All the tools are there for him to be fine at 3B, LF or RF if he has to move.
Kyle Glaser: Sorry for the delays folks. Had a worker arrive at the house and then had to do a quick radio hit. Back to the chat. We'll move quicker now.
Lucas (Boston, MA):
- Any feel for who the Sox might draft at 17? Lot of smoke that they want to swing for the fences with a high upside pick given that they got robbed of their 2nd round pick
Kyle Glaser: As mentioned above, the Red Sox have a pretty diverse track record in terms of player types with their top pick. Tough to peg exactly what they're going to do. A lot is just going to depend on what happens in front of them, especially if some of the high school guys get pushed down as expected.
- With JT Ginn as a Boras client, do you expect he'll still get big money if he slides into the comp or second round? What are his options if he does not sign?
Kyle Glaser: His option is he gets healthy, pitches another season at Mississippi State and elevates himself into top 10 overall consideration. That's a pretty appealing option if he doesn't get the money he's looking for.
- Have you heard any teams on Chase Davis? I'm surprised he's not talked about more, cause his raw tools are fantastic. Is he likely to be signable in this draft or is he college bound?
Kyle Glaser: There are some rumors that teams could be willing to pay Davis Top 50 money even if he falls below that range in the draft. He's a good player a couple of teams are willing to bet on as long as his bonus demands aren't outrageous.
Brad (Lansing, MI):
- Any chance someone like Ed Howard makes it to the Tigers at #38 because the picks ahead of them had a definite college lean? Or do you think the Tigers go for one of the college SS instead, somewhere in the first 3 rounds?
Kyle Glaser: Everything we've heard is Howard doesn't get out of the first round, with the 15-30 range most likely. Stranger things have happened though.
- Do you think the Pirates will sign a catcher in this years draft?
Kyle Glaser: The Pirates need catching and you will see teams start drafting for organizational need (not major league need, but organizational need) as early as the 2nd round sometimes. It's certainly possible.
- Are the Angels one of the teams connected to Mick Abel in the top 14?
Kyle Glaser: I've heard them more connected to Reid Detmers, personally. The Angels haven't started going after high school pitching until the 3rd or 4th round under the current regime.
- Any draft buzz for Thomas Saggese?
Kyle Glaser: Yes, actually. Saggesse was one of the biggest risers late in the draft process. If the number is right, there are some teams interested.
Robert (Pacific Northwest):
- Is there any buzz on the Padres selecting Mick Abel, Nick Bitsko, or Jared Kelly? To me, unless Veen falls ... this seems to be a slot where they could save some money and pay a premium in later rounds. If you were to project ultimate upside for Hassell, Hendricks, and Veen ... what players could they turn into?
Kyle Glaser: They've been more tied to the HS bats or college arms than the HS arms, although they definitely took a long look at Bitsko when he threw a bullpen for teams this spring. And I'm going to stay away from comping kids for now. Just leave it at they all have a chance to be premium, middle of the order-hitting outfielders if all goes well.
- Who are some guys that could unexpectedly sneak into the top 10?
Kyle Glaser: I don't know if it's unexpected anymore, but Heston Kjerstad would be the main one. Patrick Bailey is another, a la Shea Langeliers last year.
- Who in that University of Texas class do you think will sign professionally? Would love to see Jones in burnt orange
Kyle Glaser: I think we see Kelley, Jones, Halpin, Witt and Tucker drafted high enough that they sign. Never know, but that's how I'd handicap it today.
- Yankees have second smallest pool with picks at the end of the 1st, 3rd and 4th rounds. Is it more likely they 1) go overslot at 1 at expense of latter two picks 2) go way overslot round 3 while paying $20K or less for round 4 or 3) close to slot to get best 3 players available?
Kyle Glaser: When you have that few picks, the best thing to do is not play slot games and just take the best player you can with your top pick. Most teams only get 1 or 2 impact players in a draft if they're lucky, anyway. When you have little room for error, don't get cute. Just take the best player you can as early as you can and pay him.
- If Nick Gonzales and Emerson Hancock are there at 6 for Seattle, who do you think Dipoto will prefer? Would the Pirates choose the one Seattle passes on?
Kyle Glaser: Tough to say, given the Mariners have gone two college position players and two college pitchers with their first-rounders under Dipoto. We have Hancock ranked as the better of the two players, but they do like Gonzales too. As for the Pirates, they're one of the biggest question marks in this draft.
- What are you hearing about Tyler Soderstrom and Braiden Ward a couple of California Valley guys?
Kyle Glaser: Soderstrom is going to go good, probably in the 12-18 range. Belief in the bat is universal and for good reason. The dude can hit and it all looks right. Ward is more in question whether he'll be drafted in a five-round draft, but that 80-grade speed certainly gives him an appealing carrying tool
Dustin (La Mirada):
- Is there ANY chance the dodgers nab Jared Jones in the first round???
Kyle Glaser: The Dodgers have gone VERY heavy toward players from the Southeast the last decade. I think it's likelier they stick with that long-held trend. Jones should be there though if they want to pull that trigger.
- Hyper local NYC question- any notable prospects from Brooklyn- Alex Santos (still love ya buddy) doesn't count
Kyle Glaser: Santos is really the only Brooklyn guy. Matt Mikulski from Fordham (The Bronx) and Jose Rodriguez from St. John's (Queens) are the other top guys in the NYC area.
LV Roller (Las Vegas):
- Why isn’t Chase Silseth ranked higher? I know he’s 6’ tall but his numbers are equal to al the other top JUCO guys. In fact, he was #2 in k/9 in JUCO for min 25 IP. His velocity is 92-95 top 97 and can throw 4 QP all for strikes in any count? Seems like he should mentioned with all the other RHP in JUCO. The games he lost this year his run support was ZERO. No runs when he left the game.
Kyle Glaser: Silseth's a good pitcher, but you're a tick high on the stuff. He was mostly 91-93, top 95 this spring and wasn't always on top of his breaking ball, though it flashed above-average when he was. Most see him as a future reliever just with the pitch mix and lack of physical projection. He's got arm strength and plenty of stuff and people like him, it's just all more in line with someone toward the back of the top 10 rounds. If he goes to Arizona next year and dominates as a starter against D1 competition, that will change.
Nick B. (St. Charles, MO):
- In your latest draft you have C Dingler landing with the Cardinals at 21. Their catching prospect depth is probably the best in all of baseball with Knizner, Herrera and J-Rod. Think the Cardinals would go catching if best available?
Kyle Glaser: You always go best available in the first round. Worst-case scenario the Cardinals have a solid pool of catching prospects they can trade from. If they believe he's the best player there at 21, they shouldn't and won't hesitate to take him.
Bob (Elgin, IL):
- Austin Wells before the season was projected to go in the teens. Then he has a very good start at ASU and it seems like he keeps slipping. Now back into mid 2nd rd. How does that happen with no new data? More broadly how are the player values changing with no games or no workouts. What data is being generated to move guys up and down?
Kyle Glaser: As a Sun Devil, I'm obliged to correct you on where Wells goes to school. He's at U of A. But we still have Wells ranked as a first-round caliber talent (No. 21) in the BA 500, I guess we just haven't had him mocked in the first round in recent updates. He's still a first-round talent and no one will be surprised if he goes there. The bat is good enough to overcome a likely move out from behind the plate.
- Do you see Detmers as worthy of a top 10 pick with his low ceiling? Sure, a steady 3 or 4 starter is great for a team, but is it really worth it for a team high up in the draft who could target someone with a higher ceiling instead?
Kyle Glaser: I wouldn't call a No. 3 starter a low ceiling. If a team believes he can get there, that's worthy of a Top 10 pick. Go back and look at previous drafts. There's one actual No. 1 or 2 starter every few years. Those guys are rare and most guys given that "ceiling" never reach it. Most end up as solid 3/4s who sneak into the No. 2 range in their best years. If you think Detmers can become a solid No. 3 for the bulk of his career, you take him 7-10 no questions asked.
Craig (Kirkland, Washington):
- Do you think this year's draft will be less predictable than normal? Will there be more surprises in the first round because it's impossible to pinpoint which GMs/scouts are targeting/watching?
Kyle Glaser: Absolutely. This is going to be the wildest, most unpredictable draft in recent memory. The combination of less looks at guys and owners trying to save money at every turn is going to create more surprises and "wait, really?" picks than we've seen. It's going to be wild.
- Why is Garrett Mitchell sliding so far down in the draft? He looks like a potential top 5 pick with his tools. Are teams really that scared of a Type 1 diabetes diagnosis to refrain from selecting a player who could be a perennial All-Star? It seems like a decision that could put an organization back years.
Kyle Glaser: For some teams it's the diabetes, but what isn't being talked about enough is the concerns about his swing. It's a choppy swing that needs to be reworked entirely, and there's no track record of him hitting with wood. He's a great athlete, but you're not going to spend a top 10 pick on a guy with a questionable bat. That's why he's falling despite his big tools.
Roger (Greenville, SC):
- Re: punting a top 10 pick, the player absolutely does matter. It has to be someone who would refuse to sign for 40% of slot, so it's got to be a legitimate potential 1st rounder who hasn't taken himself out of the draft. Suddenly a kid who was interested in signing for multiple millions is going to find himself low balled with no option but to either go to school or sign with a team that doesn't really want him.
Kyle Glaser: Of course who the player is matters. The real issue is it doing so doesn't actually save teams that much money. All it does is save them the $100,000 of the signing bonus they'd have to pay this year. The rest of the signing bonus that they pay out in 2021 and 2022 is going to get paid out in those years anyway to the 2021 comp pick they get for not signing their player this year. If an owner wants to punt on a top 10 pick to save 100K in 2020 spending, that would be a case study in mismanaging your business.
- What are your thoughts on Jordan Nwogu and what sort of range do you see him going in the draft tomorrow? My very amateur eye sees him as kind of a right-handed Eric Thames with lots of upside.
Kyle Glaser: We have him on the cusp of the fifth round. He could definitely go higher as an elite athlete and accomplished college hitter.
- Is there a time limit or restriction on signing I drafted free agents? For example, if a player find out they won’t have a scholarship or their University won’t have on campus classes due to Covid in September can a player sign for $20K then? Will you be covering the signing of the undrafted signings?
Kyle Glaser: The draft signing deadline is Aug. 1. I'm not 100 percent sure if that applies to NDFAs. We can find out. And yes, we will be covering the NDFA signings this year once the period opens June 14.
James (Bay Area):
- If you were the Giants what would your strategy be with the 2 extra comp picks? Go under slot in round 1 and over for your 3 second rounders? Swing for the fences at 13/49 and then save money later? Seems like they have a lot of room to be creative (and have a creative GM) so curious how one could best "game" this unique draft? Thanks!
Kyle Glaser: Don't play slot games at the top of the draft. Top 15 picks are chances to get future superstars. Don't try and get cute. Take the best player available and pay him. If you want go under/overslot with later picks, go ahead. But the worst thing the Giants could do is play slot games at 13.
- The Braves took both Cade Cavalli and Reid Detmers when they were coming out of HS, and were unable to sign either. Detmers obviously won't still be there for a reunion at 25, but is there any chance Cavalli is still around?
Kyle Glaser: Certainly possible. We have Cavalli at No. 22 in the BA 500. He's in the range, talent-wise.
- In terms of draft philosophy, do teams look at their draft class a portfolio and therefore try and diversify it? I understand this isn't Wall Street, but with so much risk involved with young developing players I would think teams would want to cover themselves as much as possible.
Kyle Glaser: There are teams who do look at it that way more so than others. Some teams have a type and do draft to that type aggressively, but others do make a conscious effort to try and diversify their organizational talent pool.
- Teams like a yankees or dodgers maybe have a big advantage for sign 20k players undrafted?
Kyle Glaser: I think it's going to be teams more like the Giants, Blue Jays and Cubs who have committed to increased pay for their minor leaguers.
Billy (South Texas):
- Jared Kelly - why do some mock drafts have him At 30? Could all this be a smoke screen and he end up in top 10? Where do you see him going and in what range ?
Kyle Glaser: High school righthanders fall the closer we get to the draft every year. The risk associated with them is just too great for some teams, especially ones who already throw as hard as Kelley does (that much velocity that young tends to lead to injury. Not always, but often). He's still in first round consideration, but it's likely going to be more toward the back than the front. Same thing that happened with Ethan Hankins, Daniel Espino, etc.
jeff (Northern California):
- Do you think geography will play a large factor in where undrafted FA's will ultimately sign (California kids signing with California teams) or is it really based on scout connection and/or the MLB teams ability to demonstrate their organizational benefits?
Kyle Glaser: It's going to be a lot more about scout connection and what the teams can offer them, especially financially in terms of both the bonus and the salary once they get into the minor leagues.
- If you were a college junior and didn’t get drafted, would you take the $20k and go pro, or go back to school? What would be the deciding factors for you in making that decision? To me, it seems like the smartest decision to get into the pro ranks seeing as most senior selections don’t typically get big money anyways. For that reason, it seems better to get into pro ball and avoid injury or setbacks as a senior next year.
Kyle Glaser: It would depend on my scholarship situation. If my scholarship was greater than 20K and my playing time was secure, I'd stay on to finish my degree. If my scholarship was less than that and for whatever reason my playing time next year was in question, then I'd turn pro. It really is just a case-by-case basis.
- I know Martin is a safer prospect overall, but how much higher of ceiling does Veen have compared to Martin?
Kyle Glaser: Don't underestimate Martin's ceiling here. A .280 hitter with a chance to go 20-20 and play around the diamond is a damn good player. With Veen you'll find people who think it'll be more .250-.260 with 30 HR while playing corner outfield. Different players who do different things, but the upside is similar as all-star caliber players.
- How good is this year’s Northern California HS Draft Class? Everyone knows Soderstrom, Harrison, Susac, Davis ... How much has Nick Yorke’s stock changed? I’m hearing there is an audience who likes his ability to hit as well as trepidation by many regarding his medical. What about 1B Michael Brown? I’ve been hearing late buzz on his elite Left Handed power, some of the best in the Draft, that has teams very intrigued. TJ Nichols is another name I’m hearing a bit. Thanks!
Kyle Glaser: Nichols is rising fast and might get paid in the 2nd or 3rd round. Yorke has plenty of believers too in the 3rd-4th round range. This is a really good draft for NorCal even in the absence of any elite college players.
James (North East, Maryland):
- If the Tigers go with anybody else besides Torkelson, would that throw the O's possible plans of picking a cheaper option at #2 out the window, since I have read that they really like him?
Kyle Glaser: If the Tigers pick someone else at No. 1, the Orioles are taking Torkelson.
Allen Johns (Federal Way, WA):
- Are you hearing anything on Kyle Hurt RHP from USC?
Kyle Glaser: There are teams who like the stuff enough to take him as high as the third round. Others are all the way out because of his history of underperformance. Enough teams are interested I think he gets picked.
Richard (Hacienda Heights):
- Is it better to draft College players or High School players. Myself being a Dodger fan and following BA since 2002, I’ve noticed that the Dodgers have had quite a bit more success with High School guys especially on the Pitching side. I can name way more High School guys that we have drafted and developed than College guys. Thanks
Kyle Glaser: Generally speaking, the success rate of college players making it to the majors is higher than that of high school players. That said, you never, ever want to draft out of only one pool and completely ignore the other. The number of high school draftees who become superstars (Trout, Yelich, Betts, Arenado, Bellinger, etc.) is significant. It just goes back to properly evaluating the players in front of you and taking the best ones when the opportunity arises, no matter where they come from.
- How do Lacy and Hancock compare to Casey Mize coming out of college?
Kyle Glaser: Lacy earns some very high marks and could very well end up matching Mize in terms of big league impact, but my perception is Mize was considered half a step ahead coming out of college. Hancock is really good, but Mize was a clear tier ahead of where he is.
- What are your thoughts on Isaiah Greene when wi he get drafted
Kyle Glaser: Good athlete with a good swing. He's in play anywhere from 30-50. Of course, signability will factor into if he gets drafted there, but on talent, that's where he stands.
- Nick Gonzales pedestrian exit velocities and hitter friendly home stadium terrify me. Not to mention the question about his long-term position. Is he not a high risk - medium reward pick in the top 5 for the Jays?
Kyle Glaser: I've dug in on this a lot and evaluators have consistently come back to me with conviction that he'll hit. He's getting compared to all-stars, batting title contenders, etc. The fact he's going to play 2B isn't a problem. In a situation like this where the numbers are going to be skewed, you really have to trust your scouts, and the scouts are in.
Kyle Glaser: Ok everyone, that will do it for me, and since everyone else is on the east coast, that will wrap up our draft chat for today. Thanks for coming out, and keep it here at BA all day tomorrow for around-the-clock draft coverage.