Some players rising up draft boards:
With the depth of this draft class, I see lots of teams with top 15 selections settling for signable guys. Thus, lots of COL pitchers will be selected in the top 15. I expect 8 COL pitchers to be signed before the 16th pick (Cole, Hultzen, Gray, Bradley, Bauer, Barnes, Jungmann and Meyer).
- Danny Hultzen ... With Cole and Rendon having question marks he is even rumored to be selected 1st overall. I can see the Pirates selecting him (as he has the least bonus demands of these 3 as well) and safe some money for later picks.
- Alex Meyer ... He put some things together this year (command) and was even rumored to go to the Nationals at 1-6. I don't see him falling past the 2nd Brewers pick (1-15) while being rumored as a 20-30 pick earlier on.
- Francisco Lindor ... He seems to overtake Bubba Starling as the top prep position player. Nevertheless, he could still not be selected in the top 8. I don't see him falling past the Cubs at 1-9, though.
- Brandon Nimmo ... After showing his pretty swing at a showcase, his stock is rising. I wouldn't be shocked at all if he's drafted in the teens while I'm still hoping that he falls to the Rays in this draft.
- Michael Levy ... With the tools of a 1s/2nd round pick and questions about him being able to stay at short, he was rumored as a 2nd pick earlier on. Now (as he shows polish and seems to be staying at short) it would surprise me if he'd be available at the beginning of the 1s round. I don't see him falling past the Reds (1-27) or then the Rays (1-32).
- Larry Greene ... The latest high riser a la Matt Hobgood (in '09) or Delino DeShields (in '10). I see some prep players like him moving up draft boards if they agree to sign for slot money before the draft. Greene has lots of raw power with solid speed and a good arm, making him very suitable for RF.
Some players falling down draft boards:
Nearly all players listed in this category are falling because of their high bonus demands
- Anthony Rendon ... Most predict Gerritt Cole going 1-1 (some even Danny Hultzen or Dylan Bundy) as he seems to be less risky. He highest likely won't fall past the Mariners at 1-2, though.
- Dylan Bundy ... He is not falling yet, but if the first 3 picks are Rendon-Cole-Hultzen (in any order) and if the Orioles don't take him and his very high bonus demands, he could fall to the Cubs (1-9) or even out of the top 10.
- Bubba Starling ... Early considered as the consencus Royals pick at 1-5, the Royals are reportedly looking at college pitching right now. In addition, Francisco Lindor seems to overtake him as the first selected prep bat. I could even see him falling out of the top 10 with Kansas (1-5), Washington (they want to win in '12 --> I see them going with COL pitchers; 1-6), Arizona (1-7; Compensational pick --> Highest likely COL pitcher) and Cleveland (1-8; Nearly sure to take a COL pitcher) looking at COL pitchers. He won't fall past the Padres (1-10) and Astros (1-11), though.
- Archie Bradley ... Is reported to be asking for more than 20 mio. $. This way the top 10 talent could land at 1-19 (Red Sox), 1-20 (Rockies) or 1-21 (Blue Jays). I don't see him falling more.
- Jackie Bradley Jr. ... I always considered him as a 20-30 pick talent (while he was sitting in the 10-15 range) and now - as he is injured - he is falling. I think he'll be selected in the 1s round.
- Matt Purke ... Injuries, inconsistent performance and high bonus demands make a prospect fall. Once at the top of draft boards along Rendon and Cole he now doesn't project to be selected in the 1st round. The "Da'Quan Bowers of Baseball" could fall to the 1s and even 2nd round where I see the Blue Jays, Rangers, Giants, Red Sox and especially the Yankees and Tigers targeting him. While some mock drafts predict the Rays selecting him, I just don't see them paying 3-4 mio. plus for him. Not with the amount of picks they have.
- Austin Hedges ... He's #30 on the cumulative draft prospect rankings and #50 on the cumulative mock board. What does that tell you? Right: Incredibly high bonus demands. He could again be a pick for some big market teams (and Detroit), but his commitment to UCLA is very strong.
Cumulative draft board:
In my last post about this I've had 4 mock draft sources included (BA, John Sickels, Prospect Junkies, SB-Nation Mock). Including the latest mocks by PG Crosschecker/Perfect Game and Jim Callis (Baseball America), the cumulative draft board looks like this:
(Click at the image for a larger view)
The top 17 talents won't fall to the Rays according to these experts and I agree with them. The 8 COL pitchers will definitely not fall as well as the COL hitters (Rendon, Springer, Mahtook). Dylan Bundy and Archie Bradley could fall, but not far enough while Tyler Guerreri and Daniel Norris seem to be more signable. Josh Bell, Bubba Starling and Francisco Lindor also won't be available with the 24th pick as it looks like. I also don't expect Alex Meyer (21st on the list) to be available at 24.