Mock drafts for baseball have gained traction over the last few years. There was a time when the only mock draft only mattered in the NFL. But no longer, my friends! In the great sport of baseball, we like to debate about potential free agent signings, potential trades...it only makes sense that the draft gets its own share of speculation. Here's a cross section of various draft pundits and who they have the Twins taking fourth overall in June's draft.
Keith Law, ESPN: Kohl Stewart, RHP (Prep)
All the draft news out of Minnesota recently has been about the team's focus on pitching, and naturally Law has recognized that fact. He fits the profile of a high-upside hurler, which is something the Twins desperately need - but Stewart is a long-term project. He says Stewart is likely to be the best talent available at number four, predicting Minnesota will draft him over high school catching prospect Reese McGuire.
Scouting reports have his fastball sitting in the mid 90s, with a potential power slider in the mid 80s and a changeup that needs a lot of work. What intrigues me the most about Stewart is that he was also heavily recruited as a college quarterback, having actually committed to Texas A&M. I'm not sure if that's a stance from which he's backed out, or if it's just a risk the Twins are willing to take.
One scouting report I read called him a "thrower" rather than a "pitcher", which isn't too concerning considering he's in high school, but another said he looked like "a quarterback pitching more than a pitcher". To be fair, that assessment was also made last autumn.
For a full and fantastic scouting report, check out Baseball Prospect Nation.
For more on the Twins taking Stewart, head over to Minor League Ball, where John Sickels breaks down his first round.
MyMLBDraft.com: Austin Meadows, OF (Prep)
Say what you want about the Twins needing to take a pitcher, but Meadows has a variety of gushing from scouts. Here's a sample.
- Easy first round pick and potential middle of the order batting average and power.
- Bryant is the best all-around college bat in the draft. Meadows may have that distinction at the high school level. ... He may be as close to a five-tool player as you'll find in this draft.
- Meadows is one of the few players in this draft with legitimate five-tool potential. ... has one of the highest ceilings in the Class of 2013.
- An outfield phenom ... one of the fastest players in the country ... few players blend across-the-board abilities like this.
- Meadows may be the most gifted player in this year's draft. ... has the ability to become a future All-Star.
Crawfish Boxes: Kris Byrant, 3B/1B (University of San Diego)
Bleacher Report: Sean Manaea, LHP (Indiana State)
Sports Illustrated: Clint Frazier, OF (Prep)
"The Twins are building an excellent core of young position players in Trevor Plouffe, Aaron Hicks, Chris Parmalee and last year's number two overall pick, outfielder Byron Buxton."