Yesterday Baseball America released their insight for the draft, by selecting who they believe will be the top ten picks of the 2018 Rule Four Draft. I thought it would be a nice topic, for the fun and far-too-early projections for the top ten, including Mets’ exclusive #6 pick.
- RHP Casey Mize, Auburn, Detroit Tigers
- LHP Matthew Liberatore, Mountain Ridge HS, San Francisco Giants
- 2B Nick Madrigal, Oregon St, Philadelphia Phillies
- LHP Shane McClanahan, University of South Florida, Chicago White Sox
- RHP Brady Singer, University of Florida, Cincinatti Reds
- LHP Ryan Rolison, Ole Miss, New York Mets
- SS Brice Turang, Santiago HS, San Diego Padres
- RHP Ethan Hankins, Forsythe Central HS, Atlanta Braves
- CF Travis Swaggerty, University of South Alabama, Oakland A’s
- 3B Alec Bohm, Wichita State, Pittsburgh Pirates
Baseball America projects that chosen at #1 by the Detroit Tigers is Auburn’s Casey Mize, who has been absolutely lighting the college baseball world on fire, especially with a masterful no-hitter on March 9th, with 13 K’s.
At #6, Baseball America projects the Mets to select Ole Miss’s Lefty Ryan Rolison.
The last three times the Mets have picked in the top third of the first round they have gone with a college arm, and scouting director Marc Tramuta also took a college lefty with his first round pick in 2017 (David Peterson) in his first year at the helm. Ryan Rolison might be the best college arm available in this scenario, and he’s one of few lefthanders in a class that has incredible depth in righthanders. All of the other college arms already mentioned would figure to be in play here as well.
Rolison has not enjoyed the dominant year that he should be as a #6 pick, pitching to a 3.63 ERA in seven starts with 39.2 innings pitched, 39 hits allowed, 16 walks, and 52 K’s, but has some promising stuff. He throws 90-93 and touches 95 from the left side, with a plus curveball and above average changeup.
Also, just because a scouting director chooses a college lefty as the pick one year, it doesn’t mean they do it every year.
Honestly, I don’t know how I feel about Rolison. I don’t think he features enough upside, and projects closer to a #3 starter than an ace. He would be a nice high-floor low-ceiling type of pick, but I’m not sure if he’d provide a good enough impact, and isn’t even doing all that well this year.
Other Draft Tidbits
People aren’t as high on High School 3B Nolan Gorman as they have been before, with questions of body type coming into play as of late, making him possibly slide in the draft to mid first round. One chat with scouting guru from Fangraphs, Kiley Mcdaniel, provided this nugget:
: What am I not seeing with Nolan Gorman? He looks like he’ll be a chunky 1B type that will strikeout a lot.
: One of the opinions that’s getting louder the last few weeks is his body has backed up, scouts are seeing more of a 1B long-term and he’s having some trouble with spin. Very hard to rank him right now. After NHSI the whole scouting community (and me!) will get a long look at him and we’ll have some sort of consensus.
It’s sad to see, because Gorman had a lot of promise, and is a lifelong Mets fan, but the Mets are most likely passing on Nolan.
Updates on College Position Players
CF Travis Swaggerty:
After Starting off hot, Swaggerty is now hitting .295/.473/.516 with 5 homers, 6 doubles, and a 30/19 BB/K in 27 games.
Eierman has gone the opposite and now is hitting .304/.423/.578 with 9 2b, 2 3b, and 5 hr in 26 games.
2B Nick Madrigal:
Currently ranked down on the list but making some noise is Wichita State CF Greyson Jenista. Jenista had been playing first base for most of his college career, but when he played in the Cape League last summer, he emerged as a capable center fielder, showing improving routes with his above-average speed and earning top honors on BA’s top 50 Cape League Prospects for 2017. He hit well with a wood bats in the prestigious summer league, earning the MVP Award in the Cape League. This year, Wichita has decided to agree with the Cotuit Kettlers coach and stick him into Center Field, and he hasn’t disappointed.
With a nice little swing from the left side, and a contact-oriented approach, Jenista hits well, and shows plus raw power in batting practice. Jenista is currently hitting .302/.459/.523 in 24 games with a double, 6 homers, and a 23/16 BB/K and has gotten comps to George Springer in terms of profile and athleticism, as well as Bradley Zimmer. He is one guy to watch moving forward, knowing the Mets will keeping an extra eye on athleticism for #6 in July.
Video by Baseball America.
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