Primer: The Draft season is well underway and team boards are starting to become clearer so I reached out to one of my favorite draft writers, Willie Hood from Guardians Baseball Insider, to imagine Day 1 of the MLB Draft. Willie and I factored in historical drafting tendencies, bonus pools, signability considerations, and team information as we alternated picks through the first round. Don’t forget to check out the entire first round, which is live now. Selections 1-15 at NSB and picks 16-30 at Guardians Baseball Insider are available right now.

Let’s dive into the next rounds. These picks are running simultaneously on both North Side Bound and Guardians Baseball Insider. GBI does great work, make sure to check out their awesome pieces at their site.

  1. Colorado – Gavin Turley- OF Hamilton HS, AZ
    • Willie: The Rockies like athletic outfielders with power potential. Turley goes here in this scenario. The Arizona native should hear his name somewhere safely in the 25-50 range in July. Colorado has four top 50 selections and could make a move for an over-slot pick with their next picks coming at 38 and 50. In this mock draft Colorado went catcher Daniel Susac with their first pick followed by this selection. When July gets here, we could see somewhat of a reversal with the Rockies popping a college outfielder like Jordan Beck, Gavin Cross, or Chase DeLauter following that up with someone like Logan Tanner, Conner Prielipp, or Landon Sims here.
  2. Cincinnati – Henry Bolte- OF Paolo Alta HS, CA
    • Willie: Cincinnati received this selection for the loss of Nick Castellanos in free agency. The club has an opportunity to go pitching, bat, whatever they want. In this scenario, the club pops Cali prep outfielder Henry Bolte. He’s an athletic outfielder with juice in his stick.
  3. Baltimore – Walter Ford- RHP Pace HS, FL
    • Greg: Finally, the Orioles are able to buy down a top prep pitcher in this mock. In 2020, it’s been rumored that Baltimore tried to save money up top to buy Nick Bitsko down to their competitive balance pick. Ford, like Bitsko, reclassified making him one of the youngest players in the class. Ford has a three-pitch mix and needs to take a step up in command of his offerings. It’s a frontline profile if it all comes together.
  4. Arizona – Conner Staine- RHP Central Florida
    • Willie: After grabbing Druw Jones with their first selection the D-backs have an opportunity to just keep pouring talent into the system. Staine provides a safe college arm with some upside, mid-90s heat, touching 97, and a solid four-pitch mix.
  5. Kansas City – Conner Prielipp- LHP Alabama
    • Greg: With shades of Sean Manaea, the Royals take the top college lefty who comes into the season injured. After taking Barriera up at ninth overall, the Royals doubled down on lefties.
  6. Pittsburgh – Andrew Dutkanych- RHP Brebeuf Jesuit, IN
    • Willie: In this draft scenario, the Pirates set up their board with one of the best players in the draft and hope to move money down the board. Getting Dutkanych here is a big win for them. He’s a power righty from the Indiana prep ranks. It’s a quality four-pitch mix with big upside.
  7. Cleveland – Justin Campbell- RHP Oklahoma State
    • Willie: The soon-to-be-former Oklahoma State Cowboys righty fits solidly into the 20-45 range. On the bump, Campbell shows a low-to-mid 90s heater with an above-average curve and quality change all coming from a high over-the-top arm slot from a 6’7 frame. He repeats well and has above-average (or better) control. For Cleveland, this is a near-slot pick but pushes savings further down the board as the club looks to spread the wealth and capture both quality and quantity. With their last three Competitive Balance Round A selections, Cleveland has selected Triston McKenzie, Lenny Torres, and Tanner Burns (all right-handed pitchers). This scenario stays true to that trend. This is a pick the Guardians could use to grab one of the injured arms like Priellipp, Sims, Pallette, etc. Cleveland could look for Logan Tanner here if he slides or prep bat like Tucker Toman or an athletic outfielder like Drew Gilbert or Justin Crawford. Other collegiate arms that make sense here are Bryce Hubbart, Parker Messick, Carson Whisenhunt, Jonathon Cannon, and Thomas Harrington.
  8. Colorado – Bryce Hubbart- LHP Florida State
    • Willie: The Rockies typically focus on collegiate arms in the early rounds of the draft, typically grabbing a left-hander with one of their first few picks and that’s the selection here. Hubbart is a young for the class lefty with low-90’s heat, good control, and nice secondaries.
  9. San Diego – Josh Kasevich- SS Oregon
    • Greg: I’m a big believer in Josh Kasevich and I think a team is going to be able to pick an impactful player in the 20-45 range. Kasevich combines contact, strong chase rates, and exit velocity all coming from a solid defensive profile at shortstop. Here the Padres still take a bit of a bonus pool cut to save money for Dylan Lesko. There is a good chance that Kasevich is a Top 330 player by MLB and is required to be offered 75% or more of the bonus pool. The Padres will plan to save more money at pick 53.
  10. Los Angeles Dodgers- Drew Gilbert- OF Tennessee
    • Greg: Drew Gilbert is a “greater than the sum of his parts” player with a strong hit tool and power that is just beginning to show. That screams LA Dodgers who have shown time and time again they are an organization capable of making adjustments to players similar to Gilbert to get the best out of them.
  11. Boston – Landon Sims- RHP Mississippi State
    • Willie: After taking the typical route (middle infielder) in round one for the Red Sox this scenario has the club grabbing Bulldogs righty Landon Sims. Sims was shut down after an elbow injury resulted in March Tommy John. When healthy Sims sits mid-90 and higher. He has a devastating slider paired with an underdeveloped changeup and a short track record as a starting pitcher. There’s plenty of risk and upside here.
  12. Baltimore – Dylan Beavers- OF California
    • Greg: Beavers gets involved in the first-round discussion, but he’s knocked down a bit in this mock due to the vast number of college outfielders. Baltimore takes a third first-round caliber player in this mock after saving money with Parada and taking Ford in the Comp round
  13. Arizona – Jonathon Cannon- RHP Georgia
    • Willie: Arizona has three top 50 selections with that the pool space to make a splashy move or two. After grabbing Jones (2), and Staine (34) they come back with Georgia righty Jonathon Cannon. Cannon has a low 90s heater, a new cutter, slider, and changeup from a crossfire delivery. He has excellent control and should move quickly.
  14. Pittsburgh – Tucker Toman- SS/3B Hammond HS, SC
    • Willie: Another team with three top 50 picks, the Pirates play grab South Carolina shortstop/third baseman Tucker Toman here. The switch-hitting Toman displays an advanced hit tool and could slide over to third or second in the future.
  15. Washington – Carson Whisenhunt- LHP East Carolina
    • Greg: Whisenhunt entered the year as one of the top college arms, but after a suspension for performance enhancing drugs, his profile is clouded. Washington historically has been willing to push the risk envelope in an effort to find upside. A PED suspension isn’t as concerning as off-the-field troubles that the Nationals have been willing to deal with in prior drafts. It’ll be up to teams to dive deep into Wisenhunt to properly value him this summer.
  16. Miami – Victor Mederos- RHP Miami
    • Willie: Miami likes pitching prospects with velocity and Mederos has it. He pitches in the low-to-mid 90s touching 99 on occasion. The righty displays a solid four-pitch mix with fringey control. If things don’t work out in the rotation he has the stuff to pitch from the backend of a bullpen.
  17. Chicago Cubs – Thomas Harrington- RHP Campbell
    • Greg: After Carter Hawkins joined the Chicago Cubs as their new GM, he famously quipped that he had the secret for developing pitching. While it was obvious he was joking, it’s quite likely that he will still have an effect on the type of pitchers the Cubs bring into the organization. Thomas Harrington happens to have qualities that both the Cubs and the Cleveland Guardians have historically gravitated towards. He is an arm that thrives with command (1.7 BB/9), which Cleveland has succeeded with numerous times. Harrington’s primary offspeed is his changeup, which is reminiscent of several Cubs prospects and Cubs VP of Scouting Dan Kantrovitz’s prior draft picks.
    • Do not lose sight of Virginia Tech’s Tanner Schobel. The SS is a name on the rise and he could absolutely be an option at pick 47 for the Cubs. Schobel is respected for his makeup, his data is incredibly encouraging, he looks like he can stay at SS, and his .373/.467/.720 will absolutely play.
  18. Minnesota – Justin Crawford- CF Bishop Gorman HS, NV
    • Willie: After going with Chase DeLauter with their first selection the Twins double down on toolsy outfielder grabbing Justin Crawford here. Twins fans would be thrilled and perplexed at the same time. Crawford is the son of former big leaguer Carl Crawford. He has game changing speed and a projectable body. This would require a sizable over-slot deal to make it happen.
  19. Kansas City – Cade Hunter- C Virginia Tech
    • Greg: Cade Hunter doesn’t get the same publicity as the other top catchers in the class (Parada, Susac, and Tanner), but he’s a quality prospect in his own right. Kansas City. Hunter has above-average potential as a defender, is a fierce competitor, and has the offense to be a starting caliber catcher in the pros.
  20. Colorado – Luis Ramirez- RHP Long Beach State
    • Willie: The Dirtbags righty sits low-90s and touches 95 mph with his heat. He’s a ground ball pitcher that rounds out his three-pitch mix with a low 80s slider and change. Colorado typically grabs a few arms in the first few rounds this mock is no different with the Rockies using their fourth pick in the top 50 selections.
  21. Detroit – Drew Thorpe- RHP Cal Poly
    • Willie: The 6’4, 195 lb righty has some projection left to his frame. His best pitch is his low-mid 80s changeup (one of the best in the class) paired with a low 80s slider and low 90s heat with good control. His high arm slot and quick arm action will entice team’s that like those qualities.
  22. New York Mets – Cole Young- SS North Allegheny HS, PA
    • Greg: As one of the northeast’s brightest stars, Young entered the year getting first-round buzz. He may still end up there. In this mock, however, the huge bonus pool of the Mets allows them to pick up a premier talent in the second round.
  23. San Diego – Jacob Melton- OF Oregon State
    • Greg: Continuing the plan with previous selections, the Padres save a significant amount of the slot bonus by taking an emerging player in Oregon State’s Jacob Melton. He showcases strong batted ball data, but his age may offer an opportunity for Melton to position himself as a win/win option for clubs.
  24. Cleveland – Parker Messick- LHP Florida State
    • Willie: In the last two years, Cleveland has grabbed left-handed pitchers Logan T. Allen and Doug Nikhazy in round two. This mock has Florida State Seminoles lefty, Parker Messick, sliding to pick 54. He should be off the board somewhere in the 40-60 range in July. For this scenario, Cleveland lands another college pitcher. This should allow them to push money down the board. For example, keep an eye out for the Guardians using some of that money saved at pick 16 here or spread over a few picks. After signing 9 of their 21 picks to overslot deals watch for the club to do something similar in 2022. There’s potential they’ll go for a young prep player like Gavin Kilen on an overslot deal and circle back around to one of the many injured arms (Lesko, Phillips, Sims, Prielipp, Barco, Pallette, Williams, etc,) too.
  25. Cincinnati – Jacob Miller- RHP Liberty Union HS, OH
    • Greg: Cincinnati goes big here to end the mock taking an electric local prep pitcher. Miller may play his way up to the first round, but perhaps the Reds find a way to select another dynamite arm in Miller.