During the Major League Baseball Rule 4 Draft, I am usually in China, eating my favorite breakfast in the world: a crispy pork bun and a pizza-shaped, spicy-salty bread that I don’t think I could describe, except maybe to say “mouth heaven.”
And that’s kind of the thing about China: the food. The cultures are old and the ethnicities are varied. Mainland China is comprised of some 57 different people groups with different cultures and cuisines. Food is a national pride and pastime. The word “variety” doesn’t even begin to describe the diversity of dishes and flavors.
Mock drafts are not like Chinese cuisine.
Sure you might encounter a spicy pepper or two, but you’re not going to find sauteed eel, boiled jellyfish or barbecued squid on a stick.
Maybe you’ll think it’s good to not find these specific foods, but if you don’t try everything once, you’ll be missing out on that miracle dish you’re surprised to find is perfect for you—the flavor combination you’ve been waiting a lifetime to find–and I’m happy to report that sauteed eel is incredible.
So that’s what we’ll do here: saute some eel, boil some jellyfish, taste some chaos.
|2||Orioles||Nick Gonzales||2B SS||21|
|3||Marlins||Austin Martin||3B OF||21|
Chalk then its opposite.
Though really I just inverted the fibonacci here. Most mocks perambulate around the idea of Baltimore passing on Martin in favor of more money to spread throughout the draft. These mocks park it back on the ferrari before the ink dries in part because if you get the second pick wrong it’ll goof your whole draft board. Makes sense, but it’s 2020, so I’m thinking let’s have one of these follow the disaster-prepper scenario into oblivion.
Miami is pleased. They produce enough pitching to only briefly mourn the loss of Lacy.
The Royals have a history of taking college pitching that falls in their lap, so I suspect they’d swerve from a plan that seems to involve Zac Veen. Their organizational pitching depth gets downright racy with an added Lacy.
|5||Blue Jays||Max Meyer||RHP||21|
Meyer reminds of a bit of big time Timmy Jim Lincecum–more the draft profile than the player–a dominant arm people know can pen it up in the majors and maybe immediately but who might just be an elite starter if given the chance.
Hancock is a nice get for Seattle on the perceived value front.
Kjerstad might land in Baltimore on a cut-rate deal, here in a cut-rate org, or perhaps in Colorado where he can look forward to ~350 plate appearances a season in his athletic prime.
Veen at eight would be highway robbery. Always summer in San Diego.
|10||Angels||Robert Hassell III||OF||18|
|11||White Sox||Patrick Bailey||C||21|
Not the happiest section of the draft board for me.
Detmers will be fun anywhere, but you hate to see any pitcher go to Coors.
I’m giving the Home Depot Angels some benefit of the doubt here. I don’t know how they can make it look good if they are indeed the team that’s floated the idea of punting this pick. (If they do go this route and blow up a young player’s life, I guess I’m hoping it’s a high school kid with a college commitment he’d be somewhat happy to fulfil or enough in his favor that he could just bounce to a JuCo and come back making more immediate cash in 2021.
The Reds like power. Who doesn’t? Precisely how we got McCarthyism?
|17||Red Sox||Pete Crow-Armstrong||OF||18|
San Francisco seems like kind of a wild card. I had pieced Mitchell together with the former Dodgers front man Farhan Zaidi very early in the process. He’s seen swing changes in both Oakland and L.A.
Texas has been into plate skills college bats and is happy to have Foscue.
I like all five of these fits, actually. Boston has been linked to college pitching, and that makes all the sense in the world, but I just keep thinking Pete Crow-Armstrong is perfect for them and an incredible value here. Almost sent him to the White Sox. Not sure why it’s all footwear based.
From Sox to Wilcox and away we go! The World Series Champs (remember that!?) are thrilled to get a guy they drafted in 2018.
Arizona, New York and St. Louis all get guys who might go ten spots higher in a rona-free reality.
Loftin feels like a Brewer. (Comes from a long line of beverage makers?) Teams don’t draft for need in baseball, but they can still draft for fit when one lines up.
When Daniel Espino fell to Cleveland in last year’s, I was flabbergasted: just a perfect fit of player and organization. Bitsko would evoke a similar response.
I probably have the Rays pick wrong, but a healthy Crochet in Tampa would be dreamy.
Jordan Walker is neck-and-neck with Isaiah Greene for my favorite fantasy prospect from this high school class. Atlanta gravitated toward college players in 2019, but every year is new.
Sabato to Oakland would be mildly disappointing for fantasy if they manage to lock up Matt Olson long term, but A) that’s probably not happening, and B) Sabato would still be fun as a DH.
I’ve had Bryce Jarvis and Bobby Miller penciled into the Twins at Yankees at one point or another, but the Dodgers have seemed like a great fit for the 6’6″ Witt since I started putting this together.
All three organizations here get high-end talents they have plenty of time to mold. Greene brings elite speed with solid hit and field tools and might be a fast-riser come FYPD season in dynasty leagues thanks to his fantasy topside.
Just for kicks, here’s a list of guys I’ve had in the first round at one point or another.
|Austin Wells||C OF||21|
|CJ Van Eyk||RHP||21|
|Masyn Winn||SS RHP||18|
Thanks for reading! I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter and Reddit.