As I get ready to leave for Nationals Park to be there while the Nationals make the #6 pick overall….here are my draft day predictions.

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates- Gerrit Cole, RHP, UCLA– The obvious #1 draft choice.  He is the best pitcher in the nation.  After drafting Taillon last year, the Pirates have an excellent 1-2 punch in the future….if they hold on to them.
  2. Seattle Mariners- Anthony Rendon, 3B, Rice- Seattle wants a hitter and Rendon is by far the best hitter.  A future David Wright, Evan Longoria, or Ryan Zimmerman.  This gives Seattle a bat that they desperately need.
  3. Arizona Diamondbacks- Danny Hultzen, SP, Virginia- He will be the fastest player from this draft to make it to the majors.  Another very good pitcher who could turn out to be better than Cole.
  4. Baltimore Orioles- Dylan Bundy, SP, HS- The best high school pitcher in the draft.  There are reports that he wants a lot of money to sign, but the Orioles can use his older brother, who pitches for the Frederick Keys as leverage to get a deal done.  He could be more like a Clayton Kershaw who gets drafted out of high school and doesn’t take long to come up to the majors.
  5. Kansas City Royals- Bubba Starling, OF, HS- A 5 tool athlete who has an offer to be the QB for Nebraska.  He will require a big signing bonus to not play football, but the Royals love having high upside prospects so they will get it done.
  6. Washington Nationals- Trevor Bauer, SP, UCLA- Has actually had a better season than his teammate Gerrit Cole and flys a little under the radar because he plays with the #1 draft pick in the country.  Bauer is a solid choice.
  7. Arizona Diamondbacks- Jed Bradley, SP, Georgia- 2 very nice SP’s selected by Arizona in round 1.  With Upton and Drew as corner pieces to their offense long term, they need to lock down some young pitching to go with Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson.
  8. Cleveland Indians- Francisco Lindor, SS, HS- Lindor is projected as high as #2 overall.  He really isn’t supposed to be a high AVG guy, he has no power, and only mediocre speed.  He does have excellent defense though.  With Asdrubal Cabrera being flexible at SS and 2B I can see the Indians selecting a middle infielder.
  9. Chicago Cubs- Sonny Gray, SP, Vanderbilt- A steal at pick #9.  Gray is a small Tim Lincecum sized pitcher who comes from a great pitching program that produced David Price.  I feel he has top 5 value, but the Cubs could get the much needed steal of the draft.
  10. San Diego Padres- Archie Bradley, SP, HS- Good young high school pitcher.  The kid would be lucky to get to pitch at Petco.  Anyone is.  Just ask Correia or Harang.
  11. Houston Astros- Taylor Jungmann, SP, Texas- The Astros would really love to get a native Texan here.  There is a good chance he is available to them, and this should be a lock of a pick.
  12. Milwaukee Brewers- Javier Baez, SS, HS- The Brewers have 2 picks coming up very quickly here and they will grab the young SS they want first.
  13. New York Mets- Alex Meyer, RHP, Kentucky- He used to be ranked much higher so this could be another potential steal here.  Meyer could have top 5 value.
  14. Florida Marlins- George Springer, OF, Connecticut- The Marlins seem to be tied to outfielders.  Why I don’t know.  They already have Stanton, LoMo, Coghlan, Cousins, and 2 more at low A.  Good OF’s are hard to come by though and taking the second best one in the country is a good pick for anyone at this point.  Especially one who was once projected to be a top pick.
  15. Milwaukee Brewers- Matt Purke, SP, TCU- Another guy who was once projected to be in the top couple overall.  Purke is projected to go much later than this still, but I am hopeful that a team like Milwaukee jumps on him early.  Of course I wouldn’t mind if he fell to #94 for the Orioles as well.  No chance of that happening though.