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We are less than a month away from the 2017 MLB Draft. First round action is scheduled for June 12 at MLB Network’s Studio 42 in Secaucus, New Jersey.
For fanatics that want to see the action unfold live, it can be seen on MLB Network and MLB.com. The draft is a 3-day event that covers a ridiculous 40 rounds.
Unlike the NFL and NBA, where draft picks often have immediate impacts, it’s more of a waiting game in baseball. The other big difference is the time of which it takes place. It’s right in the middle of the regular-season, where the other two follow the end of the previous season.
While it’s rare, players taken in the draft could be playing for their big league team that same summer. For most of the selections, it’s usually several years before we see them playing in the majors.
I’ve put together my mock draft for the first round. Note that there are only 27 official first round picks. Teams who sign free agents away from a team that made a qualifying offer forfeit the rights to their pick.
The only way a team doesn’t lose a first round pick, is if they have one of the first 11 selections. In this scenario the team then forfeits their second round selection.
Those teams who lost out on a free agent signing are awarded a compensation pick. The compensation round immediately follows the first round. I’ve included a list of those teams and the order they will select below.
There is also what is known as a Competitive Balance Lottery. These are picks that are awarded to teams that have one of the 10 smallest markets or 10 smallest revenue pools.
There are 14 picks total awarded. There were six awarded for Round A (follows compensation) and eight for Round B (follows 2nd round). The order is determined based on a lottery drawing. I’ve included the picks awarded for both rounds at the bottom of the article.
It’s been reported that the Twins are considering as many as 7 players for the No. 1 pick. That tells you how wide open it is. However, most believe it’s down to Louisville’s Brendan McKay and high school phenom Hunter Greene. Interesting thing about both, is they are prospects on both sides of the ball. I’m siding with the more polished McKay for Minnesota, but it’s really up in the air.
Round 1, Pick 2
RHP/SS, Notre Dame HS (California)
It’s easy to see why there’s such a buzz around this kid. The 17-year-old has topped out at 101 mph. Those kind of arms can be hard to come by. While it’s not secret Greene wants to stay close to home and land with the Padres at No. 3, I don’t see Cincinnati passing up that fastball potential.
San Diego Padres
Round 1, Pick 3
There’s enough talent here that Wright could be one of those guys the Twins surprise us with and take him No. 1. He’s been throwing extremely well with the Commodores and has all the tools to develop into a big league ace.
Tampa Bay Rays
Round 1, Pick 4
LHP, Whiteville HS (North Carolina)
Tampa Bay likes to stockpile pitching talent and Gore is definitely that. He’s extremely athletic and while his fastball is currently in the low-to-mid-90s, that should improve as he gets older. Add that with three above-average pitches to go with the heater and he won’t be on the board long.
Round 1, Pick 5
OF, North Davidson HS (North Carolina)
Atlanta has what many consider to be the best farm system in the majors. With Swanson figuring to be at shortstop for the foreseeable future, I think they pass on Royce Lewis. The Braves have also used almost all of their top picks the last two year on pitchers. That leads me to them going with a talented outfield prospect in Austin Beck.
Round 1, Pick 6
SS/OF, JSerra HS (California)
I know the A’s were trying to win it all, but they have to be wishing they never made that deal to send Addison Russell to the Cubs. If the board falls like I see it, they get their chance to make up for it. Lewis could give them a superstar tandem up the middle with their current top prospect in Franklin Barreto.
Round 1, Pick 7
RHP, North Carolina
This Tar Heel might just be the most polished college arm in the draft at what I think is a steal. The concern with his mechanics will likely keep him out of the Top 5, but he’s more than worth the risk in my opinion. If he can’t make it as a starter, he could end up being an elite closer for what appears to be a fast improving Diamdonbacks team.
Round 1, Pick 8
Faedo was considered the top player in this draft class when mocks started showing up, but he’s fallen down bards because of knee surgeries. Players recover from knee injuries better than ever these days. This 6’5 right-hander could develop into a future ace.
Round 1, Pick 9
Kendall was once considered a Top 3, even No. 1 overall potential. His stock has fallen because of a high strikeout rate. I just like the overall tools of this kid too much. I think this would be a great selection for the Brewers.
Los Angeles Angels
Round 1, Pick 10
I believe the Angels have to look for someone who can help sooner rather than later. They can’t just keep wasting all these incredible years from Trout. Virginia’s Pavin Smith has the looks of one of those special players who can hit for a high average and power.
Chicago White Sox
Round 1, Pick 11
Romero has fallen down some boards because of a suspension at Houston, but he’s since been reinstated. I think had it not been for that incident, he would be a Top 5 pick. I just feel it’s worth the risk at No. 11 for a rebuilding White Sox team.
Round 1, Pick 12
1B, Huntington Beach HS (California)
I’ve seen a lot of publications with Pratto ranked inside the Top 10. While I’m not that high on him, I think he goes in the Top 15 for sure. There’s a big time ceiling with this kid.
Round 1, Pick 13
OF/RHP, Ballard HS (Louisiana)
Here’s another young stud that can not only make in the big leagues as starter, but every day player. He’s got a big time arm that come close to 100 mph. He’s got excellent speed and athleticism. Biggest thing for him will be making consistent contant.
Kansas City Royals
Round 1, Pick 14
Here’s the other Virginia player that is on every teams’ radar. Haseley has shot up draft boards and some even have him going in the Top 10. He’s got more power than you would think when you see him play and an excellent eye at the plate.
Round 1, Pick 15
LHP, Houston County HS (Georgia)
The Astros have a talented littered across the field, which makes me think they look more in the direction of a pitching prospect. Hall is one of the elite lefty prep prospects. He’s got all the tools to be a big time arm in the Astros rotation once he matures.
New York Yankees
Round 1, Pick 16
Carlsbad HS (New Mexico)
New York is another team that I think is going to look more towards pitching help with their first round pick. If Rogers is still available, I don’t think they hesitate. He’s been clocked at 97 mph from the left side. Big time potential here.
Round 1, Pick 17
RHP, Concordia HS (Texas)
I wouldn’t be surprised if Baz is off the board here, but if he is, the Marines won’t think twice to take him. He’s got the talent to be a Top 10 pick. Great power arm that looks like someone who could make his way to the majors rather quickly
Round 1, Pick 18
OF, Alfonso Cast Martinez HS (Puerto Rico)
Detroit would love to get their hands on a player of Ramos’ ability. He’s not as polished as a lot of the guys I have being taken ahead of him, but he the upside here is tremendous. He’s an athletic kid who can do it all.
San Francisco Giants
Round 1, Pick 19
RHP, Louisiana State
San Francisco’s had their fair share of bullpen issues of late, which makes Lange a perfect fit. This kid has a devastating curve to go with a plus fastball. He could develop into a starter, but I think his ideal spot is late in games.
New York Mets
Round 1, Pick 20
3B, Missouri State
When healthy the Mets starting rotation is set for quite some time. What they need is offens. Burger is someone I believe can provide just that. Scouts love his raw power, but I love the fact that he hits for power while rarely striking out.
Round 1, Pick 21
Peterson has certainly helped his stock with his recent performances. He’s has two starts with 17 or more strikeouts, including 20 in an outing against Arizona State. His fastball isn’t electric at 94, but it looks faster too hitters than it actually is. Could be an absolute steal at this point in the first round.
Toronto Blue Jays
Round 1, Pick 22
RHP, Burnsville HS (Minnesota)
Carlson has the makeup of a future workhorse with some promising signs. Carson added nearly 5 mph of velocity on his fastball, while also improving his secondary pitches.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Round 1, Pick 23
You can bet the Dodgers have seen Canning throw on multiple occasions, given he’s going to school in their backyard. He’s not projected to be a top of the line starter, but should fill in the back of a rotation nicely. Considered one of the more safer picks.
Boston Red Sox
Round 1, Pick 24
LHP, State College of Florida – Manatee
Boston has luxury of going a number of different directions here, but I feel the focus will be on pitching. How about a kid that can throw 92-95 and has 124 strikeouts in 79 innings.
Round 1, Pick 25
Houck isn’t as high up on a lot of draft boards. Part because he doesn’t have an elite power arm. His fastball is in the low-to-mid 90s. He’s also not had the best spring. However, he’s had a ton of success at the collegiate level.
Round 1, Pick 26
3B, North Carolina
Here’s a kid that could play all over the infield. He’s listed as a 3B, but could also move to short or second. He’s producing as well as anyone on a stack Tar Heels team.
Round 1, Pick 27
This fits the mold of the Cubs rebuilding strategy. Players who are not only talented at the plate, but can play a variety of positions. I also think Chicago is set on acquiring pitching via trades or free agency. With that said, I could see them snagging one of the top reliever candidates if they fall to them.