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Twins Daily 2022 Draft Coverage, May 19


As we creep ever-so-slowly forward to the annual baseball draft, there are a few storylines that have taken a front seat. We finally have an answer to one of the draft’s biggest questions. We’ll cover that and more in this week’s update.


 

We’ve been waiting since last July to find out what would happen to one-time-Mets-pick-turned-unsigned pitcher Kumar Rocker. We finally have an answer.

Kumar Rocker will enter July’s draft after pitching in the Frontier League. Unsigned players going the Indy Ball route isn’t completely unheard of; so this isn’t a complete surprise. In fact, this was always considered to be the most likely of the avenues that Rocker could take. But now we have the specifics: Kumar Rocker is a member of the Tri-Valley Valleycats and teams who want to see him will have to travel to Troy, New York to do so. There’s nothing official yet about when Rocker will report to the team - it doesn’t appear that he is there yet - nor when he will pitch - though he’s rumored to throw a half dozen or so times before the draft.

The other main storyline is the dearth of pitching. It remains evident in the mock draft that Jim Callis released late last week. The first pitcher to be selected in this mock draft is prep RHP Brock Porter go to the Mets at #11. That’s followed by an interesting run through the teens consisting of a prep pitcher who shut down to prepare for the draft (Brandon Barriera), a college pitcher who is nearing a return to health after Tommy John (Connor Prielipp), a prep lefty who you’re not seeing very high on anyone’s rankings (Robby Snelling), the top prep pitcher who just had Tommy John (Dylan Lesko) and a college pitcher who is just starting to ramp up after missing the beginning of the season with shoulder soreness (Blade Tidwell). The first healthy college pitcher to go in this mock is Gabriel Hughes at pick twenty. Crazy.

Callis has the Twins selecting Jace Jung from Texas Tech with the 8th overall pick. The bat profile certainly works as a high selection, there is no doubt about that - and that’s a huge reason why Jung has appeared in my Top 10 ever since I started ranking prospects. But the defensive uncertainty is enough to make you uneasy. Jung would likely enter the organization as their top hitting prospect; but also a prospect with no clear defensive home. And that’s a little scary.

JEREMY’S TOP 10 PROSPECTS

No changes this week, but Prielipp throwing a bullpen next Monday could cause some moves next week. 

1.) Druw Jones, OF, Georgia prep (Vanderbilt commit)

2.) Termarr Johnson, 2B, Georgia prep

3.) Elijah Green, OF, Florida prep (Miami commit) (Baseball America breaks down his game.)

4.) Brooks Lee, SS, Cal Poly 

5.) Kevin Parada, C, Georgia Tech

6.) Jackson Holliday, SS, Oklahoma prep (Oklahoma State commit) 

7.) Cam Collier, 3B, Chipola JC

8.) Connor Prielipp, P, Alabama

9.) Dylan Lesko, SP, Georgia prep (Vanderbilt commit) (Baseball America breaks down his game.)

10.) Jace Jung, 3B, Texas Tech 


MOCK DRAFTS / PROSPECT BOARDS

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Keith Laws mock went up on The Athletic this morning. He’s got some college bats going for under a lot deals at the top resulting in Termarr Johnson falling to the Marlins at 6, Cam Collier going to the Cubs at 7, the Twins taking Cole Young at 8 and Elijah Green to the Royals at 9. 
 

I’m really hoping Johnson and/or Collier slide enough to get to the Twins. Based on recent mocks it seems like Johnson’s stock has fallen sightly where he’s no longer a sure fire top 3 pick. Collier seems to have a ton of helium. They’re my personal favorite semi realistic options for the Twins at 8.

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I think this is one of the most unpredictable drafts in a long time due to injuries, the lack of college pitchers, and no real clear tiers of players.  This year especially I think there will be big differences in how teams evaluate the players.  I did see Law has Mazur going in the first round, so the local boy is impressing people.  

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Whoever we take will likely be under slot unless it is someone they really really like.   This will be the type of draft where we will try to create an extra high pick through money.  Similar to what we did with Enlow.  It is smart,  so far with Enlow it hasn't paid off primarily due to injuries.  

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1 hour ago, twinkiesfan11 said:

Keith Laws mock went up on The Athletic this morning. He’s got some college bats going for under a lot deals at the top resulting in Termarr Johnson falling to the Marlins at 6, Cam Collier going to the Cubs at 7, the Twins taking Cole Young at 8 and Elijah Green to the Royals at 9. 
 

I’m really hoping Johnson and/or Collier slide enough to get to the Twins. Based on recent mocks it seems like Johnson’s stock has fallen sightly where he’s no longer a sure fire top 3 pick. Collier seems to have a ton of helium. They’re my personal favorite semi realistic options for the Twins at 8.

I was going to do some work, but now I have to go check out Law's mock, thanks a lot.

Johnson, Collier, and Holliday are the 3 I'm hoping for most right now. But would be happy with one of the Cs as well.

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58 minutes ago, bunsen82 said:

Whoever we take will likely be under slot unless it is someone they really really like.   This will be the type of draft where we will try to create an extra high pick through money.  Similar to what we did with Enlow.  It is smart,  so far with Enlow it hasn't paid off primarily due to injuries.  

It's not so easy to do this with 8th overall slot money as it is with 1st or 2nd.  They will also only have a supplemental pick after the 2nd round rather than the pick they sometimes get after the first round.

There's plenty of chatter about the O's doing this strategy with their 1st overall pick and two competitive balance picks too.  If they do follow that strategy they will have a lot more extra slot money than anyone else to throw around (and also the first pick on day 2).

I think the Twins will play it pretty straight.  I think they could go high school or college hitter in the first round, and probably mix in a few more hitters on day 1 or early day 2.  But probably they will go heavy into college pitchers that they believe have untapped potential on day 2.

Given how weak the pitching is at the top of the draft it's probably as good a year as any to follow that blueprint, which is already what they have liked to do.

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I liked Parada and Susac early on, and I'd still be good with that as I think this organization is pretty good at developing catcher defense and could turn either into a pretty good catcher overall.

I've heard Gavin Cross mentioned with the Twins as well.  I like that he has more overall athleticism than some of the other college bats near the top, but if it's not one of the catchers or Brooks Lee somehow falling I'd probably rather see them nab a high school bat (including Collier in that group).

Law mocked Cole Young to the Twins.  Being from a cold weather state where he got a later start and is still finishing out his season, this may not be as much of a reach as it might seem right now.  It sounds like scouts love his swing.  There seems to be enough high school talent at this point that one of the available guys at #8 could be a good route to go.

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It looks like Brandon Birdsell may have done well for himself not signing with the Twins as an 11th rounder last year.  He's currently #93 in MLB top 100.  I wonder if he will be on the radar for the Twins in the supplemental round 2 or round 3.

He's had a really good 2022 college season.

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2 hours ago, twinkiesfan11 said:

Keith Laws mock went up on The Athletic this morning. He’s got some college bats going for under a lot deals at the top resulting in Termarr Johnson falling to the Marlins at 6, Cam Collier going to the Cubs at 7, the Twins taking Cole Young at 8 and Elijah Green to the Royals at 9. 
 

I’m really hoping Johnson and/or Collier slide enough to get to the Twins. Based on recent mocks it seems like Johnson’s stock has fallen sightly where he’s no longer a sure fire top 3 pick. Collier seems to have a ton of helium. They’re my personal favorite semi realistic options for the Twins at 8.

Johnson is just so dang small. I know I never see these guys play, but his size it's just hard for me to buy into there being much power potential. With a pick this high, I'm not big on station-to-station kind of hitters.

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I think I am with most posters on here in that I would love to see a good high school bat fall to us.  Would love it to be Holliday but pretty sure he will gone.  I also like Collier, Johnson  and even Cole Young if they can work out a deal for less money.

I think Collier is going to be the real deal at third base.  I think you get Cavaco with an actual bat.  I wonder if Johnson might be falling down boards because they doubt the power potential?  He has a 70 bat so should be good there but it also looks like 2nd might be the only position he can play well.  He could be Altuve with less speed though.  Young seems to be heating up.  He kind of reminds me of Noah Miller with a slightly higher rating on the bat and speed rankings.  he would be a lefty batter at the shortstop position.

I hope they go high school because right now the Twins are trying to squeeze in Larnach, Kirilloff, Miranda, Lewis, and Celestino at the MLB level.  They have Martin, Steer and maybe Wallner and Jullien on the way as well.  I don't see that they need a fast moving bat as they have plenty of bats just getting started at the MLB level right now.  Would be nice to create a second wave of bats with Rodriguez, Miller, Urbina, Rosario, and maybe Cavaco if he ever hits consistently. Also college bats CES, Fedko and maybe Mikey Perez and whoever they pick in this draft.

I am with the Twins going bat first this year as the system is graduating some more bats and the system strength is pitching right now.  Also the Twins have been able to find viable pitching later in the draft finding hitting has been a bit more hit and miss IMO.

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