On NFL Draft Day, we get a double-dip of new MLB Mock Drafts! You have to be a serious baseball nerd to get more geeked about the latter than the former, but, hey, it’s not like the Bears have a first round pick tonight anyway! So get into baseball mocksssss!!!
MLB Pipeline dropped its first full first round mock, and its first updated mock since the start of the amateur season, I believe. And for the first time (hold that thought), high school outfielder Druw Jones is not the top pick. Instead, it’s college shortstop Brooks Lee going number one. Lee was recently mocked to the Cubs and I expressed some doubt that it was realistic he could still be on the board for them at seven, and, well, I think this confirms that thinking.
The now quad of high school bats go over the next four picks (Jones, Elijah Green, Termarr Johnson, and Jackson Holliday), and Georgia Tech catcher Kevin Parada (increasingly mocked as among the top three college position players) goes sixth. That leaves the Cubs with the other top college bats to choose from, and Pipeline goes with Texas Tech infielder Jace Jung (which might be my pick there, too, if things fell this way).
Remember how I said ‘hold that thought’ on Lee surpassing Jones as the top pick? Well, the new mock at Baseball America goes that way, too. That makes for good draft intrigue overall, but for our purposes, I tend to think it underscores that neither Lee nor Jones will realistically be there for the Cubs at seven, even if things get a little crazy and a team or two pick a surprise inside the top ten.
BUT! There is a huge surprise in the BA mock, as it has the Pirates taking Dylan Lesko (even after the Tommy John surgery) and the Nationals taking Jung at five. If that happens, that means at least TWO of the top four high school bats would be there for the Cubs at seven. That would be pretty wild, because – as happens in this mock – that means the Cubs could take Termarr Johnson, arguably the best overall bat in the draft. I just can’t believe it would fall this way, but I would do a DANNNNCE if it did.
Notably, to BA, Jackson Holliday has not moved up into that group of high schoolers, though. They’ve got him going at 11, and his range at 11 to 31. Contrast to Johnson, who is 2 to 7.