Thanks to the ESPN hype machine driving the bus, everyone is aware that the 2010 NFL Draft is now less than a week away. As for me, I’ll be enjoying the NFL draft with some friends on Thursday night, consuming some adult beverages, and kicking back.
I don’t know what it is about a draft, but regardless of the sport they hold some strange allure over me. I can’t stand the NBA, but I’ll watch their draft. I’m indifferent to the NHL (though it is incredible to watch in person) but I’ll watch their draft. I enjoy the NFL, and football is my second favorite sport, so for that one I actually plan my schedule around it to ensure I can watch as much of it as possible.
No draft, however, gets me as excited as the MLB Draft with will take place this year from June 7th to June 9th. It probably goes without saying, but I will be watching on MLB Network, following along online, and I plan to host a live chat during the first round here on Call to the Pen. For those of you who know me, none of this comes a a shock. I am one of those people who adjusted their work schedule back in December with the singular purpose of listening to the Rule 5 draft online. I can’t say for sure, but I am guessing that puts me in some select company. If you haven’t listened to the Rule 5 Draft, it’s basically a conference call with all the teams. It’s not what I would classify as exciting listening for most, but I find it enjoyable. Some call it commitment, some call it obsession, but whatever it is, it makes me happy.
Anyway, to start getting ready for those glorious three days in June, I thought it would be appropriate to post the first Call to the Pen mock draft. I plan to do at least one or two more mock drafts before the real thing takes place, and I will include more information on the players going forward. For now here are my picks straight-forward and with no commentary beyond the top four. The selections below are based on talent and my own personal opinion and are not based on player signability, organizational need or each team’s actual draft philosophy.
#1 Washington Nationals: C-Bryce Harper, CC of Southern Nevada
Everyone knows about Bryce Harper. It will be all but impossible for him to live up to the hype, but that’s not his fault in the least. He didn’t call himself the baseball equivalent of LeBron James. The reality is that Harper isn’t in the stratosphere of prospects like Ken Griffey Jr, Alex Rodriguez, or even Justin Upton, but there is no doubt that Bryce has legit major league power.
#2 Pittsburgh Pirates: RHP-Jameson Taillon, The Woodlands HS (TX)
Taillon has established himself as the best of top pitching prospects and he possesses the best combination of upside and stuff that the 2010 pitching heavy draft has to offer. Among the high school pitching prospects, and it is an impressive group, Baseball America ranked Jameson as having the best fastball, best secondary pitch (curveball) and best command. He is also considered to be the prep prospect that is closest to the majors.
#3 Baltimore Orioles: RHP-Anthony Ranaudo, Louisiana State University
Ranaudo entered the season as the top-rated college pitcher in the upcoming draft class. After making his first start this season he missed some time thanks to a stress reaction in his elbow, but he has returned to the mound to make four more starts so far this season. Drew Pomeranz may have passed him up on a lot of team’s draft boards, but if healthy I think the LSU righty will be the first college pitcher off the board.
#4 Kansas City Royals: LHP-Drew Pomeranz, University of Mississippi
The Royals are sitting in a wonderful spot in the 2010 draft. They have no shot at getting Bryce Harper, but at least two of my top four pitching prospects will be on the board. Taillon is the big prize from this year’s pitching crop, and if he falls to the Royals there is no doubt in my mind that they will jump at the chance to take him. For the purposes of this mock draft, they will be choosing between Drew Pomeranz and A.J. Cole and in that scenario they will add another talented lefty to the pile of impressive pitching prospects in their system.
#5 Cleveland Indians: RHP-A.J. Cole, Oviedo HS (FL)
#6 Arizona Diamondbacks: RHP-Karsten Whitson, Chipley HS (FL)
#7 New York Mets: RHP-Deck McGuire, Georgia Tech
#8 Houston Astros: 3B-Zack Cox, University of Arkansas
#9 San Diego Padres: SS-Christian Colon, California State University, Fullerton
#10 Oakland Athletics: LHP-Chris Sale, Florida Gulf Coast
#11 Toronto Blue Jays: RHP-Dylan Covey, Maranatha HS (CA)
#12 Cincinnati Reds: RHP-Alex Wimmers, Ohio State University
#13 Chicago White Sox: SS-Manny Machado, Brito Private HS (FL)
#14 Milwaukee Brewers: OF-Austin Wilson, Harvard-Westlake HS (CA)
#15 Texas Rangers: OF-Bryce Brentz, Middle Tennessee State
#16 Chicago Cubs: OF-Josh Sale, Bishop Blanchet HS (WA)
#17 Tampa Bay Rays: RHP-Kaleb Cowart, Cook County HS (GA)
#18 Los Angeles Angels: 3B-Nick Castellanos, Archbishop McCarthy HS (FL)
#19 Houston Astros: RHP-Jesse Hahn, Virginia Tech
#20 Boston Red Sox: SS-Yordy Cabrera, Lakeland HS (FL)
#21 Minnesota Twins: RHP-Kevin Gausman, Grandview HS (CO)
#22 Texas Rangers: LHP-James Paxton, Grand Prairie AirHogs
#23 Florida Marlins: RHP-Brandon Workman, University of Texas
#24 San Francisco Giants: SS-Rick Hague, Rice University
#25 St. Louis Cardinals: RHP-Brett Eibner, University of Arkansas
#26 Colorado Rockies: 3B-Kris Bryant, Bonanza HS (NV)
#27 Philadelphia Phillies: RHP-Cameron Bedrosian, East Coweta HS (GA)
#28 Los Angeles Dodgers: LHP-Sammy Solis, University of San Diego
#29 Los Angeles Angels: 2B/OF-Levon Washington, Chipola JC (FL)
#30 Los Angeles Angels: RHP-Justin Grimm, University of Georgia
#31 Tampa Bay Rays: C-Micah Gibbs, Louisiana State University
#32 New York Yankees: RHP-Stetson Allie, St. Edwards HS (OH)
As is the case with all mock drafts, things are subject to change in future runs. I plan on publishing another mock draft in a few weeks and will provide more in depth thoughts and analysis on the players listed above at that time. Some of the top guys may appear in their own dedicated profiles throughout the weeks leading up to the draft as well as I continue to read and gather data on all of these players.
Tags: 2010 MLB Draft A.J. Cole Alex Wimmers Anthony Ranaudo Austin Wilson Brandon Workman Brett Eibner Bryce Brentz Bryce Harper Cameron Bedrosian Chris Sale Christian Colon Deck McGuire Drew Pomeranz Dylan Covey James Paxton Jameson Taillon Jesse Hahn Josh Sale Justin Grimm Kaleb Cowart Karsten Whitson Kevin Gausman Kris Bryant Levon Washington Manny Machado Micah Gibbs Mock Draft Nick Castellanos Rick Hague Sammy Solis Stetson Allie Yordy Cabrera Zack Cox