MLB Draft Day 2020

SDRay

#GoIrish #Aztecs #SDGulls #Raiders #THFC #RipCity
Staff member
Administrator
Podcaster
Jun 20, 2005
13,783
2,053
350
47
Chula Vista, CA
www.afsportsforum.com
Draft Trends And Preferences For All 30 Teams

With few exceptions, teams endeavor to select the best players available with their top draft picks every year. How a team defines the “best player available,” however, can vary widely.

Whether due to the preferences of their scouting staff or what data they value most, teams often veer toward certain types of players in the draft. Position, age and even geography are all factors in teams’ draft decisions. Over time, patterns repeat and an individual team’s preferences in the draft become readily apparent.

Those trends are likely to be amplified in this year’s draft. With the draft limited to five rounds as part of MLB’s league-wide cost-cutting due to the coronavirus pandemic, clubs have fewer chances in the draft than ever before to add an impact player to their organization. Combine that with the limited live scouting looks teams got on players got before the pandemic shut down the college and high school seasons, and clubs are widely expected to find safe haven in the familiar—leaning on their scouts they trust most and sticking to what has worked for them before.

While the past is no guarantee of the future, it is often a strong predictor. Drawing from our team draft reviews, here is an expanded look at what all 30 teams tend to do in the draft, from their strategies to what types of players they like most.

Teams are listed by division in alphabetical order.


NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST

Braves:
The Braves drafted a high school pitcher with five of their seven first or supplemental first-round picks from 2015-18. They reversed course in their first draft under new scouting director Dana Brown last year, taking two college position players in the first round and another in the second round.

Marlins: The Marlins love their lefties. They have used their last six first or supplemental first-round picks on either a lefthanded-hitting outfielder or a lefthanded pitcher.

Mets: The Mets went college-heavy in the middle of the 2010s, but they’ve progressively swung toward high school players in recent years. The Mets drafted high school players with their first three picks last year, and overall have taken high schoolers with five of their last six selections in the first or second rounds.

Nationals: The Nationals lean towards pitchers at the top of the draft as much as any organization in baseball. They have used their top pick on a pitcher three years in a row and in six of the last eight years.

Phillies: The Phillies have drafted a college position player with their last three first-round picks. They haven’t shied away from drafting players from mid-major programs, selecting 3B Alec Bohm from Wichita State and SS Bryson Stott from Nevada-Las Vegas with their last two first-round picks and RHP Spencer Howard from Cal Poly with their most recent second-round pick.

NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL

Brewers:
The Brewers selected an up-the-middle position player with their top pick four years in a row until they chose Mississippi State LHP Ethan Small in the first round last year. They also have a history of drafting from unconventional sources in the second round. The Brewers have not selected a single Division I college player in the second round since 2010. In that same time, they’ve drafted a Division II player, a junior college player, an NAIA player, two high school players from Puerto Rico and another from Hawaii.

Cardinals: The Cardinals used their top pick on a position player in four straight drafts until they chose Kentucky LHP Zack Thompson in the first round last year. Seven of their last 12 players drafted in the top two rounds were high schoolers.

Cubs: The Cubs have drafted a college player with their last seven first-round picks dating back to 2013. They have also drafted heavily from the west. Seven of their last nine picks in the top two rounds came from California or Arizona.

Pirates: The Pirates have selected a high school pitcher in either the first or supplemental first round in four straight drafts since 2016. Eight of their last 11 picks in the top two rounds have been high schoolers.

Reds: The Reds have selected a college player with their top pick in three of the last four years. Geographically, they have been particularly active in Florida. Four of their last six selections in the top three rounds came from the Sunshine State.

NATIONAL LEAGUE WEST

D-backs:
The D-backs have drafted a position player with their first pick in all five drafts under scouting director Deric Ladnier. The first three selections (Dansby Swanson, Anfernee Grier, Pavin Smith) were college picks, while the last two (Matt McLain, Corbin Carroll) were drafted out of high school.

Dodgers: Seven of the Dodgers’ nine first or supplemental first-round picks under scouting director Billy Gasparino have been used to select college players. The organization’s preference for players from the Southeast predates even the current regime. Beginning with Corey Seager in 2012, 11 of the Dodgers’ last 12 first-round picks have come from southeastern states (North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana).

Giants: Scouting director Michael Holmes has been involved recently in selecting toolsy outfielders with questions about their hitting ability. The Giants drafted Hunter Bishop last year in Holmes’ first draft, and the A’s took Kyler Murray in 2018 and Austin Beck in 2017 with Holmes as their assistant scouting director.

Padres: The Padres have a selected high school player from the Southeast with their last four first or supplemental first-round picks (SS CJ Abrams, LHP Ryan Weathers, 2B Xavier Edwards and LHP MacKenzie Gore). They have also begun leaning toward position players in the early rounds. They drafted position players with their top four picks in 2019 and three of their top four picks in both 2017 and 2018.

Rockies: The Rockies have had 11 picks in the first and second rounds since 2016. They have used each one on a pitcher, first baseman or third baseman.

7645
Minor League Transactions
Minor league maneuvering for organizations for the period April 1-June 1, 2020.

AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST

Blue Jays:
The Blue Jays have hunted aggressively for shortstops and righthanders over the last five years. In that span, the team has drafted nine shortstops and 17 righthanders in the top 10 rounds.

Orioles: The Orioles have signed nine shortstops to bonuses of $100,000 or more over the last three seasons, including three of their first six picks in 2019. If the Tigers take Arizona State 1B Spencer Torkelson at the top of this year’s draft, as expected, the Orioles could add another to their haul by selecting Vanderbilt’s Austin Martin as a shortstop.

Rays: The Rays rival the Nationals in their love for drafting pitchers early. Six of their last eight selections in the first or supplemental first rounds were used on pitchers. Three of their last four second-round selections were also used to select pitchers, too.

Red Sox: The Red Sox are the one team with no obvious trends that have emerged from their recent drafts. In their last four drafts, they have selected a college position player (2019), a high school position player (2018), a college pitcher (2017) and a high school pitcher (2016) with their top selections. They have drafted players up top from all across the country, as well as Puerto Rico.

Yankees: The Yankees have taken a high school player with their top pick in three of the last four drafts. The exception came in 2017, when they took Clarke Schmidt out of South Carolina after he had Tommy John surgery. That move allowed them to go over-slot for their next pick, California high school righthander Matt Sauer, who is currently recovering from Tommy John surgery himself.

AMERICAN LEAGUE CENTRAL

Indians:
The Indians have a strong proclivity for drafting high schoolers who are young for their class and have a track record on the showcase circuit. Cleveland has used all of its first-round picks on high school players every year since 2014. Overall 12 of their last 14 picks in the top two rounds were used on high school players.

Royals: After being repeatedly burned by high school picks in the middle of the last decade, the Royals pivoted hard toward college players the last two drafts. Six of their last seven picks in the top two rounds were used on college players, with 2019 No. 2 overall pick Bobby Witt Jr. the lone exception.

Tigers: With top-five picks the last two seasons, the Tigers’ strategy has been to go for the best player on the board. In 2018, that was Auburn RHP Casey Mize. In 2019, they went with sweet-swinging outfielder Riley Greene out of high school in Florida. This year, they’re likely to go back to the college well again when they take either Arizona State first baseman Spencer Torkelson or Vanderbilt third baseman Austin Martin.

Twins: The Twins have drafted a position player with seven of their last eight picks in the first or supplemental first rounds. Four of the last six have been outfielders, with another (SS Royce Lewis) a candidate to move to the outfield as well.

White Sox: The White Sox have drafted a high schooler with their top selection only once in the last 18 years (Courtney Hawkins, 2012). It’s worth noting that 2020 will be the first draft with new scouting director Mike Shirley in charge.

AMERICAN LEAGUE WEST

Angels:
The Angels have used three high picks on shortstops the last two years—North Carolina State’s Will Wilson and prep players Kyren Paris and Jeremiah Jackson. That continues a trend of selecting athletic, up-the-middle position players since 2017 that includes outfielders Jo Adell and Jordyn Adams in the first round.

Astros: The Astros have selected a college player from a major conference with their first pick three years in a row. They have selected college players with 13 of their last 17 picks in the top five rounds overall.

Athletics: The A’s have selected a college player with 16 of their last 17 picks in the top two rounds. The lone exception in that time was 2017 first-rounder Austin Beck, a prep outfielder from North Carolina. They’ve also chosen a position player with six of their last eight picks in the first or supplemental first rounds.

Mariners: The Mariners have selected a collegian with their top pick in each of the last four drafts. The last time they went with a high schooler with their first selection was righthander Nick Neidert in 2015. Seattle also loaded up on pitching in 2019, when it took arms with nine of its first 11 selections.

Rangers: The Rangers had drafted a high schooler with four consecutive first-round selections until taking Texas Tech 3B Josh Jung last year. Their recent track record with high school players has not been good: 2016 first-rounder Cole Ragans has had two Tommy John surgeries; Bubba Thompson, the team’s first of two 2017 first-rounders, missed most of last year with a broken hamate bone; the team's second 2017 first-rounder, Chris Seise, has had surgery on both shoulders; and 2018 first-rounder Cole Winn struggled mightily with his command and control in his pro debut.
 

SDRay

#GoIrish #Aztecs #SDGulls #Raiders #THFC #RipCity
Staff member
Administrator
Podcaster
Jun 20, 2005
13,783
2,053
350
47
Chula Vista, CA
www.afsportsforum.com
Day 1 Analysis

8. Padres

Pick:
Robert Hassell
School: Independence HS, Thompson's Station, Tenn.
Position: OF
Instant Analysis: The consensus top high school hitter in the class is Zac Veen, but the Padres went a different direction to draft Hassell instead. While Veen has more power, Hassell is the player scouts voted as the best pure hitter in the class. He's smooth, calm and balanced in the box, with a lot of hitterish actions and qualities that lead to a lot of barrels in games.
Scouting Report: Hassell is at the top of the list when it comes to the best hitters in the high school class. He was voted as the top pure hitter in the class by scouting directors, over outfielders like Austin Hendrick and Pete Crow-Armstrong and has few holes in a loose, lefthanded swing. Hassell was the most consistent hitter for USA Baseball’s 18U National Team last summer, leading the Americans in 10 offensive categories while posting a .514/.548/.886 slash line. For his efforts, he was named the World Baseball Softball Confederation’s 2019 International Player of the Year. Hassell has a lean frame with an exceptionally handsy swing that reminds some scouts of players like Jarred Kelenic and Riley Greene, in terms of hittingl potential. He brings a sound approach to the table and understands the strike zone, rarely swinging and missing no matter the stuff, using the entire field and showing an advanced ability to make adjustments. Hassell has a fairly lean frame at 6-foot-2 and 190 pounds, and scouts are mixed on his future power potential, with some wondering how much bigger he’ll get and others more optimistic about him developing average or 55-grade power. Defensively, Hassell has a chance to stick in center field. He’s an above-average runner with above-average arm strength, but his speed is better underway and he lacks the elite sort of footspeed that most major league center fielders possess. It’s more likely that he winds up in a corner, where he could be a good defender, though that will put more pressure on the Vanderbilt commit growing into more power. It’s rare for the top prep hitter in the class to fall out of the top half of the first round, but teams didn’t see Hassell much this spring and he’ll also be competing against a strong group of prep outfielders.
 

Quetzalcoatl

BoltTalker
Feb 1, 2015
9,219
2,078
350
First impression of Hassell: the kid looks like he’s 12 years old.
When I played Little League, pitchers lasted 6 innings every time not counting games called early due to the mercy rule. If this 12 year old can go 6 innings, it might make him the most durable Padre pitcher in the organization.