If you’ve followed my content here at North Side Bound (or at Ivy Futures before that), you know I’m an absolute draft fanatic. Last year I had one of my biggest thrills in writing when I was asked to tag along with Bleacher Nation’s Bryan Smith to assist with the 2021 Prospects Live Community Mock. Bryan didn’t have to do that, but the impact of him giving me that opportunity was invaluable. It probably didn’t hurt that we absolutely nailed that second-round pick. You may have heard of him. But beyond the excitement of the selection, I was able to connect with a larger draft community. These are passionate writers, podcasters, and analysts that I’ve been able to collaborate with and grow as a draft writer. I haven’t taken that opportunity for granted and Bryan is a big part of that. I was asked to pinch-hit this year when an unexpected scheduling issue arose for Bryan. Hopefully, I picked well in his stead. Make sure to watch the entire show on YouTube
- Baltimore Orioles: Druw Jones, OF, Wesleyan HS, GA
- Arizona Diamondbacks: Termarr Johnson, 2B Mays HS, GA
- Texas Rangers: Brooks Lee, SS/3B, Cal Poly
- Pittsburgh Pirates: Elijah Green, OF, IMG Academy HS, FL
- Washington Nationals: Kevin Parada, C, Georgia Tech
- Miami Marlins: Jackson Holliday, SS, Stillwater HS, OK
- Chicago Cubs: Cam Collier, 3B, Chipola JC
With the 7th selection in the 2022 Prospects Live Mock Draft, the Chicago Cubs select…Greg Zumach (@IvyFutures)
I haven’t hidden my appreciation for how much I appreciate Cam Collier as a player. My only real question now is whether what Collier has done on and off the field propelled him beyond the Cubs’ selection at 7.
North Side Bound’s Report on 2nd overall ranked Cam Collier: Cam Collier has bloodlines (his father, Lou played parts of eight seasons in the big leagues) and talent. However, it was a surprise when he not only reclassified from the 2023 draft to the 2022 draft this summer, but he enrolled in junior college. It was clear Collier was betting on himself, but would he hit facing pitchers four years older than him? Would he showcase his skills instead of just treading water? in JC, his .333/.419/.537 line with only a 15.3% K-rate and 11.6 BB% will play. From a batted ball perspective, it’s incredibly impressive that he was able to maintain his above-average contact rate while improving his breaking ball recognition throughout the season. He capped the year off with a quick and successful stint in the Cape Cod League.
A pivot option
There was a solid consideration to pivoting to Campbell University’s shortstop, Zach Neto. I really do believe he’s squarely on the Cubs’ radar at seventh overall. Could the Cubs again take a significant player in Billy Swoope’s area? Neto is consistently ranked lower than he should be and I feel like he’s a prime candidate to go much higher than his rankings suggest. He ranks 8th in the North Side Bound Ranking. Here is Neto’s report: Neto offers upside at the plate and in the field. The SS has a real chance to not only stick at the position but potentially serve as an asset at short. He has a strong, accurate arm as well as lateral mobility to run balls down to his left and his right. At the plate, Neto’s batted ball data surprises. He boasts above-average contact, hard-hit, avg exit velocity, and barrel rate. He also can handle velocity as he is one of the best performers against velo in college.
Ultimately there was no way I was passing up on Collier here in this mock draft.
- Minnesota Twins: Conner Prielipp, LHP, Alabama
- Kansas City Royals: Jace Jung, 2B, Texas Tech
- Colorado Rockies: Brock Porter, RHP, St. Mary’s Orchard Lake, MI
- New York Mets: Justin Crawford, CF, Bishop Gorman HS, NV
- Detroit Tigers: Gavin Cross, OF, Virginia Tech
- Los Angeles Angels: Landon Sims, RHP, Mississippi State
- New York Mets: Dylan Lesko, RHP, Buford HS, GA
- San Diego Padres: Noah Schultz, LHP, Oswego East HS, IL
- Cleveland Guardians: Jett Williams, SS, Rockwall-Heath HS, TX
- Philadelphia Phillies: Brandon Barriera, LHP, American Heritage HS, FL
- Cincinnati Reds: Drew Gilbert, OF, Tennessee
- Oakland Athletics: Zach Neto, SS, Campbell
- Atlanta Braves: Jacob Berry, IF/OF, LSU
- Seattle Mariners: Justin Campbell, RHP, Oklahoma State
- St. Louis Cardinals: Chase DeLauter, OF, James Madison
- Toronto Blue Jays: Kumar Rocker, RHP, Tri-City
- Boston Red Sox: Cooper Hjerpe, LHP, Oregon State
- New York Yankees: Gabriel Hughes, RHP, Gonzaga
- Chicago White Sox: Tucker Toman, SS/3B, Hammond HS, SC
- Milwaukee Brewers: Eric Brown, SS, Coastal Carolina
- Houston Astros: Daniel Susac, C,Arizona
- Tampa Bay Rays: Peyton Graham, SS/3B, Oklahoma
- San Francisco Giants: Spencer Jones, OF/1B, Vanderbilt
Who would you have picked?
Judging by the comments before and after the selections, many fans were happy to see the Cubs and Collier linked, even if it’s not the official Draft only a few weeks away.