MLB

Mock Draft of Major League Baseball amateur draft this week

The annual Major League Baseball Draft will be held Monday thru Wednesday. The draft is expected to be one of the deepest in years.

The best prospect since Bryce Harper in 2010. Seven shortstops, two from the prep ranks who could go in the top three picks. More position players expected to go in the first round than ever in history.

Those are some of the highlights of what to expect. While there are rumors that Baltimore could pass on Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman with the No. 1 overall pick and perhaps go with prep shortstop Bobby Witt Jr., this could be one of the greatest drafts in baseball history based on what some people.

Here’s a breakdown of how the picks could go:

1. Baltimore — Adley Rutschman C Oregon State

The Orioles are turning the clock back to 2007, when they selected catcher Matt Wieters with the No. 5 overall pick out of Georgia Tech. He spent just over a year in the minors before making it to the show in 2009 and then making four all-star teams. Rutschman has hit better than .400 with 26 home runs and 141 RBI in 123 games over the past two seasons. He is considered the best prospect at No. 1 since Bryce Harper in 2010, but investing in a catcher is tricky. As good as Wieters was for the Orioles, it could be argued that he was never quite what they hoped for.

2. Kansas City — Bobby Witt Jr. SS Colleyville Heritage HS (Texas)

The son of former Major League pitcher Bobby Witt, who was drafted No. 3 overall, Witt has prodigious power and offensive tools. At 6-foot-1, 180 pounds, he figures to stick at shortstop, making him a premium value. There’s some concern about his swing-and-miss tendencies, but not enough for anyone to really worry about.

3. Chicago White Sox — C.J. Abrams SS Trinity Catholic HS (Georgia)

The White Sox have taken college players in each of the past four drafts under Rick Hahn after going with high-end athletes under previous GM Kenny Williams. Neither strategy has worked particularly well, although the White Sox are pretty stocked with talent right now. The debate here is a classic between a great athlete like Abrams, who could be a top-of-the-order stud, or Andrew Vaughn, a serious middle-of-the-order hitter who is also a safe, predictable hitter. If you project the current White Sox roster to be stocked with middle-of-the-order hitters, Abrams makes sense.

4. Miami — Andrew Vaughn 1B University of California

Vaughn wasn’t drafted out of high school, but became the Golden Spikes winner as the best hitter in college baseball in 2018 as a sophomore. He has maintained his hitting this season and consistently been considered one of the top prospects in the draft. The Marlins could go with a higher-upside player like Riley Greene or Abrams if either is there. But there is growing pressure on the Marlins to start making some gains in rebuilding their roster after trading away the likes of Giancarlo Stanton, J.T. Realmuto, Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna.

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