The draft is finally this week and here are some links to tide us over for awhile. I'm hearing that the Cubs are looking for a player with the potential to give them immediate impact, which almost certainly means one of the two starting pitchers.
- Cubs Den writer/contributor Jordan Bernfield spoke with Baseball America's Jim Callis about the draft as a part of his Cubs Weekly show (12:00 on Sundays) on WGN radio. Here is the podcast in case you missed it.
- Jim Bowden wrote about trading the competitive balance draft picks and speculated on their value.
- Chris Crawford of MLB Draft Insider and ESPN wrote up a mock draft and he has the Cubs taking Mark Appel.
- Fred Mitchell writes that Dale Sveum wants the Cubs to pick up as many arms as they can, "Obviously pitching is what you want to get in the organization as much as you possibly can," Sveum said. "It's a very important part of the day that we're all curious about."
- Carrie Muskat writes that most of the Cubs talk has been about who they will select in the 2nd or 3rd round. As much as they say they don't know who they are going to pick first, I think they have a pretty good idea. They probably have a top two in mind and they'll take the best one left after Houston makes their pick.
- Bruce Miles writs that Jason McLeod doesn't want to pigeon-hole the Cubs into making a pick based on need, which is presumably pitching. Could this mean they may actually take Kris Bryant? We know that one Cubs Den contributor will be ecstatic if that happens. Bryant continues to gain momentum as the draft draws near.
- Could the Astros still take Mark Appel? Scott Boras says he's willing to play fair if the Astros are. Boras believes the Astros will spend for who they want. Of course, he doesn't want to alienate the team with the top pick when he is representing 2 of the top 3 players in the draft.
- I wrote a piece on Mark Appel and Jonathan Gray for The Ivy Drip, which should appear tomorrow, so please look out for that and I'll keep you posted as to when it's published. The conclusion? I have my preference, of course, but although nothing is certain (see Mark Prior), the Cubs really can't lose either way.
- Keith Law wrote up his third mock draft and he still has the Cubs taking Mark Appel but also thinks that Jonathan Gray and Kris Bryant are in play. Law believes, though, that the Cubs will take a pitcher. He still has Colin Moran at the top for the Astros but also writes they may opt for Kris Bryant or one of the two pitchers.
- On the other hand, Kiley McDaniel of Scout.com predicts the Astros will take Mark Appel and leave the Cubs with Jonathan Gray as their top choice. He lists what each team is hoping for and for the Cubs he lists Appel. He also lists additional options for each team and for the Cubs, he believes the 2nd option is Kris Bryant, the 3rd is Colin Moran, and the 4th is Clint Frazier. So basically his top five for the Cubs, in order, is: 1. Appel, 2. Gray, 3. Bryant, 4. Moran, 5. Frazier.
- The Baseball America held an "experts draft", which is similar in style to the one Kevin Gallo, Dan Kirby, and I did a while back. The 5 BA editors take turns making picks and Jim Callis gets the Cubs #2 pick and selects Mark Appel, though he does prefer Gray, who went first to the Astros. He still hasn't ruled out Kris Bryant either and admits he was tempted to take him.
Filed under: MLB Draft