|It's Christmas in June! |
Finally, Draft Day is here, and I'm as giddy as a small child the day before Christmas, shaking all the packages and trying to figure out what might be in that really big one with my name on it.
Unfortunately, no amount of shaking or clever examination of the boxes is going to tell me much of anything about who the Cardinals
are going to take in the draft tonight.
Of course, that won't stop me from shaking them all the same,
listening closely and hoping not to hear the tinkling sound of broken
glass. Thus, in the spirit of box-rattling, I bring you my 100
percent-guaranteed-to-be-accurate, not a chance of going wrong anywhere
along the line, supremely brilliant mock draft.
Everyone else is
doing it, so why not me?
If you're looking for scouting reports on any of the players listed, you can check out the draft section over at the official MLB site
, or, even better, you can check out my extended series of draft previews I did over at Viva El Birdos
. They're rather Cardocentric, of course, but I figure most of the people reading this really only care about the birds anyway.
So, without further ado, I present to you my first-round mock draft.
|That's right. He's already the greatest player who has ever lived. Sports Illustrated says so. |
1. Washington Nationals: Bryce Harper, C, CC of Southern Nevada -- This one is obvious. Harper is to position players as Steven Strasburg is to pitchers. Picking Strasburg was a no-brainer for the Nationals last year, and taking Harper is equally easy this year.
2. Pittsburgh Pirates: Manny Machado, SS, Brito High School, Miami -- It's pretty clear the Pirates will be taking either Machado or Jameson Taillon, the monster prep pitching prospect, as they have separated themselves from the field this spring. I could easily see either one here, but given the Pirates' struggles developing pitching prospects, I think they go with the slightly safer position player.
3. Baltimore Orioles: Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands HS, Texas -- The Orioles take the most talented player on the board, and add another high-ceiling arm to their stable of pitching prospects.
4. Kansas City Royals: Yasmani Grandal, C, University of Miami -- This one's easy; it's been reported the Royals have already all but finalized a deal with Grandal and just have to wait for the actual draft to sign him.
5. Cleveland Indians: Drew Pomeranz, LHP, University of Mississippi -- The Indians like pitching, and they prefer to go with guys who will sign quickly and fairly near slot. Pomeranz is the best player on the board who matches those criteria, having secured a spot up high with a strong conference tournament.
6. Arizona Diamondbacks: Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech -- Like the Indians, the D-Backs are rumored to be looking for pitching, most likely of the collegiate variety, and McGuire is probably the best fit here.
7. New York Mets: Christian Colon, SS, Cal State Fullerton -- The Mets have tended to draft cautiously in recent years, and Colon fits that philosophy. He's nearly a finished product, and could quickly move up through the Mets' system. He could slide over to second (a move some scouts expect anyhow), to complement Jose Reyes in the middle infield. Colon is a Scott Boras client, and I honestly don't know much about the Mets' willingness to deal with Boras, so that could certainly throw a wrench into this selection.
8. Houston Astros: Michael Choice, OF, UT Arlington -- If the Mets are conservative in the draft, the Astros tend to be downright reactionary. They value signability as much as anything, and Choice will fit that philosophy like a glove. He's a Texas kid, too, which is a bit of an added bonus.
9. San Diego Padres: Kolbrin Vitek, 2B/3B, Ball State -- This one has been rumored for quite a while now, and I think it's a good fit. Vitek has been a big helium guy this spring, and presents a nice blend of athleticism, polish, and positional value.
10. Oakland Athletics: Bryce Brentz, OF, Middle Tennessee -- This is a really tough one, as there have been tons of rumors flying around in recent weeks about what direction Oakland wants to go. I'm basing this pick mostly on an examination of their system, which shows a nice amount of future pitching depth to go along with their strong present rotation, but not a whole lot in the way of offense. Zach Cox would be an ideal fit here, but he's rumored to be seeking a huge bonus, something the A's are not usually keen on paying.