Latest MLB Mock Drafts Have the Cubs Landing an Old Favorite … or a New Name

The MLB Draft is now just THREE days away. No more time for throat-clearing. Just get to the Mocks, Brett.

The two latest come from MLB Pipeline and from Baseball America, though the latter is a slightly different one: it’s their staff making picks, in order, for the teams. I suspect for that reason, it looks different than most of the other mocks we’ve seen.

For example, the Orioles go under slot to take Termarr Johnson at the top, so the Diamondbacks get Druw Jones. The next four picks go Cam Collier, Elijah Green, Brooks Lee, and Kevin Parada, which means a guy is still on the board who has never been on the board for the Cubs’ pick before in mock draft season: high school shortstop Jackson Holliday.

Yes, he’s Matt’s son. And he is typically ranked among the three best prospects in the draft, and pretty much always goes in the top three. He was Baseball America’s High School Player of the Year (no small feat when you consider the class!), and him falling to the Cubs feels more or less impossible in the real draft. If it happened, then you’d have to think they would be overjoyed to take him (though they might have to go under slot quite a bit from there to afford his expected bonus).

In the MLB Pipeline mock, it’s the usual Druw Jones-Jackson Holliday combo at the top. The Rangers go Kevin Parada at three, and the Pirates take Termarr Johnson at four. Elijah Green and Brooks Lee go with the next two picks, so there are no big surprises in this iteration ahead of the Cubs. And, if it goes that way, with those six particular names off the board, most are going to expect the Cubs to take Cam Collier, who might be one of their top two targets all along.

Pipeline does have the Cubs taking Collier: “The Cubs look like they might take whoever is left from our ‘Magnificent Seven,’ and it’s long been reported they like Collier a lot.”

I tend to think the only way the Cubs do not pick one of the consensus top seven prospects is if (1) there are a couple in that group that they don’t rate quite as well for internal reasons, (2) there is another prospect (Zach Neto?) whom they believe is really close to that top seven, and (3) they know they can sign that player under slot and use the savings to target a SPECIFIC player in the second round that they know will take a considerable bonus.

For the right combo of prospects, I don’t have a problem with that second approach. There are some seriously interesting high school pitchers with big college commitments that will probably still be on the board for the Cubs’ second round pick, but they’re gonna require first round money to sign.

Still, I would also be more than fine with the Cubs taking any of the players in that group of seven.

written by

Brett Taylor is the Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and on LinkedIn here. Brett is also the founder of Bleacher Nation, which opened up shop in 2008 as an independent blog about the Chicago Cubs. Later growing to incorporate coverage of other Chicago sports, Bleacher Nation is now one of the largest regional sports blogs on the web.

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