Latest Baseball America Mock Draft Has a College First Baseman for Pirates

Baseball America put out their latest mock draft on Friday evening and they had a name that should be very familiar if you’ve been following our draft coverage. Yesterday, Jim Callis put out his latest mock draft and had the Pirates taking right-handed prep pitcher Shane Baz with the 12th overall pick. We covered him twice before, so after a brief update on Baz, I focused the article on Kentucky first baseman Evan White.

The BA pick for the Pirates in their new mock draft just happens to be Evan White. They mention that the Pirates have been focused on hitters and White is one of the fast risers in this draft class. As a side note, White had a tough night in the SEC tournament yesterday, going 0-for-4 in a 3-1 loss to South Carolina. He’s still hitting .366/.439/.628 in 46 games this season.

As for the rest of the mock draft, BA has Baz going 13th overall. Vanderbilt outfielder Jeren Kendall, who was MLB Pipeline’s pick for the Pirates in last week’s mock draft, goes off the board with the 11th pick. Virginia outfielder Adam Haseley seems like a semi-popular choice among fans, but most recent mock drafts have him off the board before the Pirates pick. The other college bats supposedly garnering interest from the Pirates don’t last much longer in this mock draft. Keston Hiura goes 15th and Jake Burger goes 17th.

It’s interesting to note that once North Carolina shortstop Logan Warmoth goes off the mock board with the 19th pick, only one college position player is taken among the next 17 picks. Draft experts are predicting a run on high school players starting with the 20th pick and this mock draft certainly follows that thinking. I’ve never heard Warmoth’s named attached to the Pirates and he has never been rated within a few spots of them either, but he wouldn’t be a surprising pick based on their past. He’s an athletic shortstop, with defense, speed and some power in his bat, along with a solid approach at the plate.

The Pirates have used high picks on shortstops each of the last three drafts, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for an athletic shortstop. Warmoth could probably play multiple other spots to fill a possible need in the majors if he isn’t the best option for shortstop. That’s the one position where it doesn’t hurt to load up on players because they can usually play elsewhere since they have the athleticism and arm to play up the middle. If they have an advanced bat, then you’ll always be able to find a position for them.

** BA also has an interesting article to keep on the side for draft day. It’s five high school players on the rise. None of them profile as a possible first round pick for the Pirates, but those other four picks of the Pirates in the top 88 could be interesting landing spots. Check out the article, then remember the names for draft day just in case. The last one is a 6’8″ right-handed pitcher who just screams projection.

  • I do not think the Pirates will take White. NH and the pundits can pay the usual lip service to drafting the best player available regardless of position, but I think they will pass on him b/c he is a first baseman. A team like the Pirates cannot afford to waste two straight first rounders on the least valuable defensive position. Having Craig and White anchored to first base plus Bell for another six years doesn’t make a lot of sense. If the NL ever implemented the DH, this type of pick might make more sense.

    • White is not a normal 1st baseman. His athleticism is welll beyond any first baseman in the Pirates system. He could be a top defensive 1st baseman or an athletic corner outfielder. The question will be how teams project his future power potential.

      • You make a good point about the possibility of White playing a corner OF position. That could be a possibility, but recent history tells me the Pirates are not going to draft a 1B.

        I still remember when the Pirates “discovered” Connor Joe as a power potential and drafted him with the 39th pick. AJ Reed, another Kentucky 1B with excellent power, and the College Player of the Year was still on the board. Houston took Reed 3 picks later at No. 42. The Pirates lack that ability to recognize projectable power

        • Cmon, missing on one player doesn’t mean their scouts lack the ability to project power check out Josh Bell if you want to see power developing late

          Also Reed is back in AAA right now and struggled in the bigs while Connor Joe is lighting up AA. Give each of them some more time before you cast which one was the better pick.

          • Joe did not have a projectable defensive position when drafted, and I think the back injury precluded us from seeing whether he had any pop in his bat. 5 HR in Hi A and 3 so far in AA.

            At the time of the draft, the Pirates had no power hitting 1B and Bell was still in the OF doing very well. For a team with a need for a power hitting 1B, Reed was the play. What the Pirates were thinking is beyond my ability to comprehend. Reed just turned 24 and was in the Top 100 MLB Prospects before being promoted to the majors last year, where he was overmatched. Had an excellent ST but the Astro’s decided to keep him at AAA for more seasoning.

  • Logan Warmoth = Kevin Newman = JJ Hardy. I think Warmoth profiles very similar to Newman and if he projects to move off of SS in the Pirates system, he’s not a very interesting prospect for the number 12 pick in the draft. No need for a Newman clone.

  • Rutledge = Glasnow 2?

  • “If they have an advanced bat, then you’ll always be able to find a position for them.”…and have completely awful and inexcusable defense at the major league level because of this philosophy

  • Warmouth as an outfielder perhaps.

Menu