MLB Mock Draft: We chose a 10 man panel to pick the first round, round-robin style -- plus who they would pick for Cubs at #4.

MLB Mock Draft: We chose a 10 man panel to pick the first round, round-robin style -- plus who they would pick for Cubs at #4.

I don't really like doing mock drafts on my own because I fudge them when they "don't look right".  I find it much more fun to involve other people and add a certain amount of unpredictability.  Last year I did this with Dan Kirby of Through the Fence Baseball and then Cubs contributor Kevin Gallo.  Kevin, of course, is a real scout who cannot partake in such things anymore, so I commandeered an old retired scout friend of mine -- but he asked to be kept anonymous.  Dan, however, returns and we added a whole bunch of new names who follow the draft closely.  Here is the 10 person panel:

  • Jason "Professor" Parks: Baseball Prospectus
  • Mauricio Rubio, Cubs Den and Baseball Prospectus
  • Jordan Gorosh, @TigersProspects and Baseball Prospectus
  • Sahadev Sharma of ESPN Chicago, Vine Line and podcaster at Bleacher Nation
  • Dan Kirby, Through the Fence Baseball, a site that focuses on the MLB Draft year round
  • Steve Fiorindo, Big League Futures, a site that focuses on amateur scouting and, of course, the draft.
  • Ty Youngfelt, Pioneer Press, Ty (@TyYoungfelt) has followed the MLB Draft closely over the years
  • Matt Cassidy of Future Sox, a Chicago Now site that focuses on White Sox prospects
  • A retired scout, anonymous
  • John Arguello, Editor-in-Chief, Cubs Den
  • And in the "This one goes to 11" category: Mike Moody, writer at Cubs Den, who stepped into pinch hit for one pick and also give his opinion on the Cubs best option at #4.

Each panelist had 3 picks.  I just chose the number 30 to keep it simple even though the first round is actually 27 teams and the comp round goes to 34.  It's a first round-ish mock draft.

There was commentary from those who had time but this was an all day affair, so sometimes we just g0t the pick and then added a comment from either Mauricio or me.

As a bonus, most of the writers gave their opinions on whom the Cubs would pick, you will find that at the conclusion of the mock draft toward the bottom of this page.

2014 Mock Draft

1. Astros (retired scout): Brady Aiken, LHP, H.S. (CA).  "Simple. He is the best player in the draft and has the polish to move quickly."

2. Marlins:  (Jason Parks): Carlos Rodon, LHP, N.C State. "Easy pickBest player available; top college arm in the draft; frontline ceiling with one of the highest floors in the class; plus fastball; double-plus slider; workload concerns and a few performance red flags this season, but highly competitive lefty with impact stuff. Don't over-think it. "

3. White Sox (Matt Cassidy): Tyler Kolek, RHP, HS (T). John: The latest buzz says the Sox have focused on Kolek and that he is their guy.  Keith Law has called it the biggest lock in the draft.

4. Cubs (John Arguello):  Aaron Nola, RHP, LSU:  Surprise!  I have heard conflicting stories and for me it came down to Nick Gordon or Aaron Nola.  The industry buzz I have heard recently made me go with Nola.  The Cubs may be leaning toward an arm, they prefer college players and higher floors, though the buzz is that scouts are beginning to think that maybe Nola has a higher ceiling than they originally believed.  I've also heard that they aren't especially enamored with anyone outside of the top 2 arms, so they may just get a safe player who can rise quickly.  A lot of times we mistakenly assume best available = highest ceiling within a group of similarly ranked players, which would mean Gordon or Jackson or even Hoffman.  But BPA to the Cubs means the player most capable of -- and most likely -- to make a long term impact, so they will strongly consider floor along with ceiling. They maybe even save a little bit on the bonus (though many doubt that with Nola) and go for the high ceiling talent with their 2nd pick: perhaps the very projectable Jack Flaherty or the hard-throwing Jake Bukauskus, who may have the best pure prep arm in the draft after Kolek.  Word is that the Cubs have their eye on several 2nd round pitchers.  Ask me again before Thursday and I might change my mind and flip back to Gordon or even Max Pentecost if they really want to save money.

5. Twins: (Sahadev Sharma): Nick Gordon, SS, HS (FL) If the Cubs don't snag him, I don't think Gordon gets past the Twins. The slick fielding shortstop is more athletic than his brother with more pop and less speed.

6. Mariners (Dan Kirby): Alex Jackson, OF, HS CA)I think the M's take BPA in Jackson and even if he ends up in OF, the bat is elite. He has a mature approach and jaw-dropping raw power.

7. Phillies (Mauricio Rubio): Bradley Zimmer, OF, U. of San Francisco - When it comes to hitting prospects the primary tool I look for is the hit tool as everything plays off of a player's ability to make contact. Zimmer projects to have a plus hit tool and he's shown an ability to drive the ball for hard contact. He looks the part too which helps a lot. Add in decent speed and a good arm and I think the Phillies might have themselves a player here.

8. Rockies (Jordan Gorosh): Touki Toussaint, RHP, HS (FL).  John, "With a mid 90s fastball, a knee-buckling curve, and the athleticsm to repeat his delivery and develop better command, Toussaint has some of the highest upside in this draft, but also comes with a fair amount of risk.

9. Blue Jays: (Ty Youngfelt): Jeff Hoffman, LHP, East Carolina: . TJ surgery is almost a formality for power arms now and once healthy Hoffman is a TOR pitcher. Steal.

10. Mets: (Steve Fiorindo): Trea Turner, SS, NC State:   "After dropping early in the process, a strong finish has Turner climbing up boards again.  He's athletic, can run, and has the ability to stick at SS.  If he can hit, he will be a very good player" - John

11. Blue Jays: (Scout): Kyle Freeland, LHP, Evansville: Freeland isn't a top level pitching talent but that's ok. He has a mid rotation profile and a really good shot at reaching that projection. While it's not exactly sexy it is dependable and sometimes that grades out better than the high ceiling low basement guys. - Mauricio

12. Brewers: (Jason): Grant Holmes, RHP, HS (SC):  Top 5 arm in the class for me; strong, durable frame; love the arm action; velocity has been on steady increase throughout HS career; FB will work in plus-plus velocity range early in starts; comfortable in 92-95l has touched triple digits; shows advanced feel for secondary arsenal; lacks physical projection but arsenal could continue to mature (not all projection is based on adding size/strength); in the mold of Jeremy Bonderman; could start in full-season ball; fast riser in the minors and a likely mid-rotation type with a slightly higher ceiling if command/secs play to true plus; would be all over this kid in the #5-10 range in this draft

13: Padres: (Mike Moody): Michael Conforto, OF, Oregon State: The Padres are said to want a bat. Last year, in the same draft position, they went for Mississippi State C/OF Hunter Renfroe who showed a good approach and solid power his junior season.

14. Giants:  (John): Derek Hill, OF, HS (CA):  There are so many good names on this board and personally, I would pick Newcomb, but the word is that the Giants really like the athletic Hill, who has some rawness to his game, but the good instincts, bloodlines, and makeup to work through it.

15. Angels: (Sahadev): Max Pentecost, C, Kennesaw State: Just going on best player available, I'd say it's between Sean Newcomb and Max Pentecost. Both are getting some interest from teams in the top 10, so the Angels would likely be happy with either. However, it sounds like they're leaning bat here & Pentecost has a good one and could stick at catcher.

16. Diamondbacks: (Dan) Michael Chavis,3B,  HS (GA):  Love him. Massive power, showed much improved hit tool, above-average speed, instincts to play short but should move to 3B. Great kid.

17. Royals: (Mauricio): Sean Newcomb, LHP, HartfordKinda shocked he was there, thought about him at 7. Also considered Touki at 7.  (Editor's note):  This is what makes this type of draft fun.  No fudging.  Mauricio almost took Newcomb 7th, didn't and he slid to 17th.  He also would have considered Touki Toussaint, but passed and Jordan snatched him up.  Had Mauricio taken Touki, Jordan would have taken Grant Holmes at #8, but because he didn't, he slid to #12, where Jason Parks grabbed him in what has to be considered a huge steal.

18. Nationals: (Jordan): Brandon Finnegan, LHP, TCU:  Great fastball with solid secondaries (slider, change) but his height (5'11") and some shoulder concerns knock him down from what could have been a top 10 pick. - John

19. Reds: (Ty): Sean-Reid Foley, RHP, HS (FL): a very Jocketty pick,Reid-Foley fits the Reds/Cards mold of HS arm

20. Rays: (Steve): Marcus Wilson, OF, HS (CA): SoCal guy! - Steve.  Great athlete with plus plus speed and a chance to stick in CF.  Hit tool has developed nicely the last two years but it is still the biggest question mark.  High ceiling/high risk. - John

21. Indians: (Scout): Kyle Schwarber, C/1B, IndianaSchwarber might stick behind the dish but I'm not sure the profile works there. He's a power bat with a 1B future in my mind. Power is an increasingly valuable commodity given the current playing climate and even at first the profile works well. - Mauricio

22. Dodgers: (Jason): Michael Kopech, RHP, HS, (TX): Ceiling pick for me; projectable body; can already show three pitches; FB is easy plus in the low-90s, touching mid-90s with some effort; mechanics need some work, but the athleticism is there for adjustment; CB and CH will flash plus; under-the-radar at present and it could take some time depending on his adjustments to pro ball; arguably a top ten talent in the draft based on upside; high ceiling/low floor.

23. Tigers (Matt): Tyler Beede, RHP, Vanderbilt: Some think the Tigers want a hard thrower here that they could put in the bullpen right away, such as Nick Burdi of Louisville or Finnegan, but Beede may be too valuable to pass up here -- and he certainly fits the hard-thrower description - John.

24. Pirates: (John): Jacob Gatewood, 3B, HS CA: Tremendous raw power and a high school SS with the potential to be a plus defender at 3B.  Pirates are probably just going to take the best player available here and while Gatewood is a boom or bust,  the boom is a potential top 5 player in his draft when all is said and done.

25. Athletics: (Sahadev) Erick Fedde, RHP, UNLV: If not for the Tommy John surgery, Fedde wouldn't be available here. When healthy, he was sitting 91-94, up from last year, and touching higher. His slider also took a step forward this spring and the overall profile still has some projection. Fedde has a higher ceiling than Nola - though the LSU product is a safer bet - and could be a steal for the A's.

26. Red Sox: (Dan): Spencer Adams, RHP, HS (GA)A superb athlete and a great pitcher's body at 6'-4" and 180lbs.  Can touch 95 and adds a potential plus SL.  Adds a CB/CH for a 4-pitch mix.on of upside w/ his size, athleticism & loose, easy delivery. He's from Georgia where they grow athletes on trees right next to the peaches.

27. Cardinals: (Mauricio): Ti'Quan Forbes, 3B, HS (MS): Very toolsy and extremely risky. He's a projection pick as he has a lot of room to grow and a lot of risk attached to his skill set. He's raw but the power and hit tools flash enough to make him interesting even if he eventually has to move off short. 

28. Royals: (Jordan): Alex Blandino, 2B, Stanford:  I think he can stick at third and I think the bat produces enough for him to be one of those guys you can't believe was taken behind some other names. Nice compact swing, I'm not sold on the power but I think he's gonna be a player. - Mauricio

29. Reds (Ty): Nick Howard, RHP, Virginia: I have the Reds taking Nick Howard, RHSP.  Gillaspie, Sheffield in play too. Howard goes Cashner route --  college CL to MLB SP

30. Rangers (Steve): Michael Gettys, OF, HS (GA): One of the most athletic players in this draft, Gettys is a potential 5 tool talent, but he will need to develop his hit tool.

Alternate Cubs Picks and comments from the panel

  • Jason Parks: It depends on what the Marlins do at #2, as it seems like the Astros will pick either Aiken (likely) or Rodon (not as likely), leaving the door open for either Rodon, Kolek,or  Jackson for Miami to select from. Lots of heat behind Nola at #4 for the Cubs. He lacks the crazy upside of several other arms, but that shouldn't be confused with lacking a high ceiling. He has a high ceiling; a number two/three type at the highest level. Not a franchise changer, but an accomplished arm from a highly competitive conference with polish and pitchability to go along with legit stuff; the FB has meat and can hit the mid-90s; excellent feel for a change. It's a very good overall profile. If he is available at #4, its not the highest ceiling player on the board, but it might be the best player available. Different distinctions. The first round (for me) should always be about the best player available on the board, which too often gets confused with the highest ceiling'd player on the board. Not always the case. You can make a very good case that if the order goes: Aiken, Kolek, Rodon, the Cubs could take Nola over Jackson or Gordon and still justify the pick as best available despite the slightly lower physical ceiling.
  • Mauricio: Gordon, I admittedly have a fetish for shortstops with bat to ball skills (see Castro, Starlin). Gordon has the good bloodlines and the talent, I like him a lot.
  • Scout: Pentecost on an under slot deal.  There are some intriguing arms to be had in the 2nd or 3rd round and perhaps they can talk Bukauskus out of his strong college commitment if they can save enough money.
  • Sahadev Sharma: Gordon for Cubs: Ideally, the Cubs would love for Aiken or Rodon to fall, but in this scenario, they're out of luck. Nola doesn't have the upside they're looking for at four and, at the moment, I'm hearing it's unlikely they go with an under slot deal with someone like Michael Conforto, though Max Pentecost isn't totally out of the question. I think they go Nick Gordon over Alex Jackson. I've been hearing little Cubs-Jackson buzz of late and Gordon appears to be shooting up draft boards with his ability to stick at short and solid bat to ball ability from the left side.
  • Dan Kirby: Nick Gordon: Should stick at a premium position and his plus speed, advanced approach from the left side and developing power give him some of the highest upside in the draft.
  • Ty Youngfelt: Alex Jackson - Paul Konerko comp coming out of HS- better athlete, more likely to stick at C but bat profiles about the same at same stage.
  • Mike Moody: Kyle Schwarber: Sign him at underslot and move him to LF.  hitter in the first round to give your draft a nice floor. The question with Schwarber doesn't appear to be whether he can stick behind the plate -- he can't -- but whether he can play a position other than 1B/DH. I'm told he has the athleticism to play left, so I'd take him and his advanced approach (41 BB vs. 27 K) and plus power. I haven't heard anything about the Cubs being in on Schwarber, so I'm pretty sure it won't happen, but I like him.
  • Steve Fiorindo: Alex Jackson, then probably Nick Gordon.
  • John: I gave my explanation for my pick, but to reiterate, I'm leaning Nola, Gordon, then Pentecost.

Nick Gordon was mentioned the most by our panel, so maybe he is the favorite...but....since not one of us mentioned Michael Conforto as a possibility then that means he has to be the guy, right?

For more of my general thoughts on the draft and the Cubs pick, I did a podcast with Paul Banks of the Sports Bank.

 

Filed under: 2014 MLB Draft, Mock Draft

Comments

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  • I know it was one start, but Beede on Friday night made me want him even more. Would love him or Nola

  • In reply to Patrick G:

    It won't be Beede. Nola more possible, but Gordon is the favorite of many.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I'd take Gordon in a heartbeat, then Daz Cameron next year. You can always trade for arms, and sign FAs. If Aiken & Rondon are gone, Gordon is BPA

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    that RHP from Duke might just go 1.1 next year ahead of Dazmpn but next year the ubs will get an Elite pick no matter.

  • In reply to Bryan Craven:

    I'm with you, if the Cubs are going to get the #1 pick and pay a player an $8 million dollar signing bonus, I want him to be the sure fire 1.1 in a year where everybody else wishes they had the 1st pick, not a year like this one where their is a lot of good 1st round talent but really no elite players at the top. The difference between 1.1 and 1.20 in this draft really is not worth a 6 million dollar difference.

    Mike Matuella, has a chance to be that kind of pick; At 6’-6” - 225 lbs, he looks like an Ace. Mid-90's Fastball that can hit upper 90's, Plus Curveball, Good slider that also shows plus, and a solid change that could probably stand to lose a tick or two of velocity but shows well. That's a big dude with a solid 4 pitch arsenal. I hope he just dominates next year and the Cubs have a no-brainer selection at 1.1.

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    Sign Rodon. If he's not available, I'd go for Toussaint. Solid arm with high upside and not much use on that arm. Rodon's thrown lots of sliders in his career. Scares me and should scare the Cubs.

  • In reply to Lou Sofianos:

    Floor is too low on Touissaint.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Who knows really? Do any of us when it comes to SP? Aiken seems the best but will most likely be gone.

  • In reply to Lou Sofianos:

    Scouts have made that judgment and while I have only seen Touki once live, his command was crazy, He didn't just miss, sometimes it was Nuke Laloosh hit the mascot kind of miss. A lot to fix and that makes him a big risk and a guy with a lower floor than many of the other top pitchers.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John -- I am sure you are right (and scouts definitely agree), though I side with Lou here and would like Touki or Newcomb or, someone who is growing on me, Grant Holmes (if he was 6'4 rather than 6'2, wouldn't he be in discussions for the Cubs?). Mainly I want someone with a ceiling that could be #4 worthy.

    One question on Touki. He only recently started playing baseball. Does this make you more or less confident that his terrible wildness could be curable?

  • In reply to springs:

    Unfortunately, floor goes along with ceiling and it seems that the Cubs don't feel any of the floor/ceiling combos of those players are worthy of the #4 pick. I think Holmes is probably the closest to having that high floor despite being just a high school arm, but there is considerable bust potential with the other two. Cubs can't afford to waste this pick.

  • In reply to springs:

    I think Touki has a great chance to fix his command and he has already gotten much better from what I hear, but that doesn't mean it is less risky. He is one of the higher risks of all the too pitchers in this draft. Just not a Cubs type pick.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Problem I have though is that if you could have Mike Leake at #4 in this draft, would you want the Cubs to take him? That's the comp that Nola is drawing.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Nuke Laloosh meet Touki Toussaint. Toussaint, Nuke. HA!

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    In reply to Lou Sofianos:

    I think Professor Parks has nailed it in his comment about Rodon: "don't overthink it". After Aiken, he's the BPA in this draft. If he's there at #4, the Cubs should pounce without thinking twice. Too hard to predict pitchers' injuries these days. Everyone seems to be vulnerable. We might as well go with the best guy we can get.

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    In reply to João Lucas:

    That could be true and yet when the Cubs are deciding whether to take a SP over a position player they've probably overthought it much already.

  • I heard the Twins were down to Nola and Gordon and I think the Cubs are too. Assuming Aiken and Rodon are off the board. Still holding out hope that the Marlins take Jackson and Sox take Kolek. I'd be fine with Gordon or Nola though

  • In reply to Javier Bryant:

    That seems to be the case with the Twins. Nola for me was just industry buzz, I don't get it from anyone directly involved with the Cubs.

  • I can't believe you went through an entire mock draft and didn't mention Scott Boras once. Kudos!

  • In reply to historyrat:

    Haha!

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    Awesome stuff, John. Thanks for putting this together. Must have been complicated.

    Nola has been growing on me. Ideally you'd obviously want a potential TOR pitcher at #4, but in the circumstances I would be fine with the Cubs picking him.

  • In reply to João Lucas:

    Thanks. Sharma now saying Nola not a guy being considered. I have also heard that Gordon does not get by the Cubs, so I had some conflicting info. I went with Nola, he's the hot name in the industry, though that does not necessarily mean it is the case with the Cubs

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    I didn't think it was possible, but this draft is more nerve racking than last year.

  • In reply to Phil James:

    Haha!

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    A few months ago, I pushed hard for the Cubs to draft Kyle Schwarber. I believe its unlikely as I've heard nothing about any connection from any of my sources. When I asked one respected writer what he thought, he told me that Schwarber won't stick at C so that makes him going to the Cubs unlikely since 1st is locked up by Rizzo and at the moment there's no DH. I still like Schwarber, but I'd like them to take Nick Gordon. I don't believe in drafting pitches in the first round, no matter how polished, because of the higher risk. Gordon has pop, and just because he isn't as fast as his brother Dee, his speed is real. Those are two things the Cubs could use, speed and power. Gordon reminds me of Junior Lake, but with a higher ceiling and higher floor. Although Lake still has a high ceiling, Gordon is much more likely to reach his. If the Cubs can get the 20/20 guy from Gordon that they hoped they had in Lake, then I'll be plenty happy. (If they do draft a P, I'd be able to live with Rondon or Nola)

  • Not a fan of the Nola pick... Gotta tip your hat to the kid as he has certainly produced... but I dont see #2 ceiling in him and #4 is too high.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I don't know if it is going to be Nola, but have just heard he has some helium and that some teams are rethinking their previous evaluations. I don't know if that includes the Cubs, but I thought it would be interesting if they did. Like I said, ask me again before Thursday and I may change my mind again ;)

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    While we don't know what their specific evaluations are; I find it hard to believe that they would pass a Potential everyday middle infielder with multiple plus tools for what appears to be a mid-rotation starter. Granted Nola can/should move fast, and I like the guy. But we have been able to find bargain mid-rotation SP i.e., Hammel, Feldman, Malholm, etc... so I just don't see this FO spending the #4 overall pick on a guy like Nola.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Hoosier, you know as well as anyone that I love Gordon and have been saying so for over a month, and have often said he should and probably will be the pick (before it became cool!) I believe Gordon is the favorite despite my Nola pick, but this mock is a mix of what we think will happen and perhaps what should happen -- or at least shou;d be considered

  • I wonder if Toronto would be more inclined to trade Sanchez or Stroman if they can get two high upside arms like Hoffman and Freeland.

  • Possibly. That may be their plan.

  • That's an interesting thought. If they do draft that way it could help out the Cubs in pursuit of Sanchez and Stroman.

  • Much as I love the idea of a pitcher, it just seems that Nola is a stretch at 1.4. If he really has the potential of a 2/3 pitcher, his ceiling is likely about 2.5 to 3 WAR in a healthy year, maybe touching 3.5. But if Gordon has the tools and make-up to become one of baseball's half-dozen or so best shortstops, his most productive years could be 4-plus WAR. Maybe I'm overrating Gordon, but it seems like he brings more value.

  • In reply to October:

    You have to consider likelihood as well. What if Nola was far more likely to be a 3 WAR player than Gordon is to be a 4 (which is probably true)? Does that not make him the better pick? We get carried away with ceiling, but I don't think people take floor into consideration as much as they should

  • I was thinking drafting Hoffman at #4 to a major underslot and possibly going overslot in rounds 2 and 3.

  • Throwing this out there for topic of discussion if anyone is still up: Would you consider Hoffman at #4 or is the risk just too great because of the surgery?

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I would say "yes". But only if we can sign him to an underslot and sign someone to an overslot in round 2 and possibly 3. Even if he bounces back to say 90% after TJS, his ceiling is still no worse than a #2 starter. Btw John, do you know who Hoffman's agent is?

  • In reply to bigo4show:

    I do not know offhand, actually.

    Hoffman won't make it out of the first round, maybe not even out of the top half.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I love the blog John, keep up the good work. If they believe he is the best player available despite the injury, Hoffman should be the pick at an under slot deal.

  • In reply to Jimmy Bakopoulos:

    Thanks Jimmy!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    No chance. Just too much risk to take a guy like that this early.

  • In reply to TulaneCubs:

    I can understand that side as well.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I don't like it. If you want to go underslot there are a couple college hitters (Schwarber, Conforto, Pentrcost) who have a high floor and fill in important positions quickly. And with the injury risk I just don't feel he's BPA over Gordon or Nola. If you want to roll the dice on that pick, take Bukauskas and see if $4 million doesn't change his mind about college. Seems a better net than Hoffman because losing gives you the 5 pick next year.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I think it's a mistake to draft based on who can fill in "quickly." Especially when two of those choices are catchers, who often develop slowly anyway.

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    In reply to Giffmo:

    It's an underslot play, which means saving money to gamble on a high ceiling low floor player in round 2. If you're going to do thay, instead of taking another risky player in round 1, I'm suggesting taking a college hitter who are the safest plays in the draft and will move relatively quickly because that's what college hitters do. That gives the draft a nice floor, important because getting nothing from a draft you pick fourth in is very bad.

    Also, Schwarber has almost no chance of being a catcher at the next level. 1B or OF.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I agree with everything you said here, and maybe we're just not on quite the same page with what each of us thinks "moving quickly" means.

    I haven't read great reports on Schwarber at C either, which makes me like him way less. I have zero interest at taking a 1B guy at #4. Unless he's signing for $750,000, I want no part of that. If they think he can play legitimate defensively in LF, then I'm interested in a reasonable underslot for him.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I'm on the fence about Hoff.

    But to avoid BEING a fence sitter, I say Yes.

    It's tough because his career essentially starts at the same time as our 2015 draft pick (if not just a little bit later).

    I like Nola, but just not at #4. There really is a lot to like there but no matter how much I look at his "pros", they just don't work at #4.

    The surgery obviously worries me a LITTLE about Hoffman, but TJS has become prevelant enough that it seems like most of the time it becomes about WHEN they come back not IF. (I'm not saying it's a sure thing, just that the odds have improved).

    With Hoffman, you get the ceiling ans still a pretty good floor, it's just delayed a bit. And honestly, with pitching that's not as big of a deal because there are no guarantees regarding ETA to the majors.
    Keith Law thought Appel would force his way to the majors before 2013 was over and just two days ago he gave up 10 earned runs in 1.1 innings, driving his ERA up to almost 12.
    I still think Appel will end up being a force, I'm just saying that you can't count on any pitcher to be helping the MLB team out very quickly.

    People think Rodon could help soon but you still just never know.

    So, right now I would take Hoff at #4 and play the waiting game. But I really would like him to sign underslot. Even if it's just a million or so under.

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    I fully agree...getting Hoffman with a late start and $1 million+ underslot seems a steal to me.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I'm glad somebody finally mentioned Hoffman because that has been my thinking for a while. I don't see how you could pass up his potential, he's still the BPA at #4 if the top two pitchers are picked (like him better than Kolek), even with the injury.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Hoffman is my pick if they go the underslot route. It just seems that TJ surgery is not the risk it once was. Guys are much more likely to fully recover than not. He would be the best way to go to potentially get TOR in this draft.

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    I'll be pretty disappointed if we don't come out of this draft with a potential TOR pitcher. Seriously hoping Rodon or Aiken drop to us. If not, i'll be happy with Nola as well.

    Gordon and Jackson just do not excite me at #4 from what i've seen but that's just personal preference I suppose. I was wrong about Kris Bryant last year, so if the Cubs go hitter i'd have no problem being wrong again.

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    In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    I agree so much with the second paragraph that I could've written it myself.

    I can't say I'll be disappointed if we don't come out with a TOR arm though because I don't see it. I don't consider Nola a TOR guy, personally. I would jump out of my skin if Rodon falls to us, but I'm not about to count on a guy falling, who was the consensus 1-1 just a few months ago. And I see no chance in hell Aiken falls either.

    So I've pretty much already resigned myself to the idea of signing a guy who's probably about the 12-15th most talented player for a cheap deal.

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    In reply to Giffmo:

    Just to be on the record, I'm still pulling for Brad Zimmer if we go underslot.

    I'm aware it's more or less ruled out, but I wouldn't mind it a bit.

  • That was awesome!! I hope its Rodon or Nola!

  • In reply to Ben20:

    Thanks Ben!

  • Can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm really coming around on Nola as the pick. Assuming the top 3 are Aiken, Rodon and Kolek in some order, I just don't see a guy out there that's the obvious next pick. Even if Nola does have a 2/3 ceiling, I don't see many other guys with a higher ceiling than that that also have Nola's floor. And the HS position players (Gordon, Jackson) just don't do much for me.

    Earlier in the season I was scoffing at Nola being a possibility, but now I think he's my preference.

  • In reply to TulaneCubs:

    Ha, I fee that way myself at times, I like Gordon if you believe in the hit tool.

  • I like the idea of Hoffman at 1.4 if he is agreeable to an underslot signing due to TJS uncertainty. He would certainly have the highest ceiling of anyone else likely to be available to the Cubs at 1.4.

    Sorry John, can't get on board with the Nola pick at all. I like your Pentecost idea much better.

  • In reply to notcarlosdanger:

    No need to apologize ;)

    Can totally understand the argument against Nola.

  • I can get on board with nola. If we sign lester or scherzer and if nola can move quickly then our rotation would still be solid. Especially if Grimm or Rameriz develop into a solid number 3 guy. Also, CJ Edwards isn't far away plus whatever we get when they trade Jeff.

  • In reply to JLynch2247:

    I think if you can get your ace elsewhere then having Nola in the fold for 6 years as a #3 suddenly has some pretty good value.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Exactly! I am disappointed because I thought the cubs were going to get a TOR arm at #4, but I just don't see that happening anymore. Also, Nola is projected to go in the top ten picks and the Minnesota Twins might take them if the Cubs don't, so I don't know why a lot of people are saying he is a big reach at pick 1.4.

  • I absolutely love the Nola pick considering how the mock shaped out. As you know John, I've been a fan of Nola to the Cubs ever since Hoffman and Fedde went down. The ceiling/floor combo does it for me, and it helps that I am one of the guys that believes his ceiling is #2. He has the potential for plus-plus command.

    With that said, if the Cubs come way with Aiken, Rodon, Kolek, Nola, or Hoffman I'll be happy. That is probably my top five at this point.

  • For everyone that doesn't like Nola at 4 pretend we are picking 7th lol. Would that change your mind? Because the industry doesn't always get it right and I'd take the guy with plus command and track record at 4 any day. No one can say for sure what his ceiling is but we do know his floor is one of the highest in the draft. And I'm ok with Gordon or Jackson here too just not as much as Nola if the big 3 are gone. Take best player available period

  • In reply to INgold91:

    Thank you! This is my thinking as well.

  • One positive thing here from the Cubs' perspective: past history suggests it is very unlikely all three of the Astros, Marlins and Sox will take a pitcher, especially given that 2 of the perceived top 3 pitchers in this draft are HS arms. The Marlins and Sox in particular need hitters, there's bound to be one that one of these two teams just can't resist. Gordon seems the obvious choice, or Jackson's power bat. Frankly, I think Bryant's success with us since last year's draft, and Springer's success since his call-up, makes this scenario even more likely than it might otherwise.

  • In reply to notcarlosdanger:

    Hope your right. Particulary if Aiken is there at #4. If he is, I hope Theo doesnt blow out his knee rushing to the podium,.

  • Hoffman would be an interesting pick only if his medical report
    indicates that he will be able to pitch in 2016 with at least 80%
    of his stuff. Use the extra money to get a better prospect with
    the 2nd pick.

  • With the 4th pick and a potential Samardzija trade, we could be looking at a "core 8+" next year.

  • Lets just hope that Soler, Almora and Baez stay in the core this year....I'd be really happy now if just those 4 reached their ceilings.

  • I feel confident that the Astros will take Aiken and the White Sox take Kolek. Marlins still seem like a toss up between Rodon and Jackson.

  • In reply to Javier Bryant:

    To me that's the key point in the draft.

  • New here, love the site.

    I think their board goes Aiken, Rodon, Gordon, Jackson, Kolek.

    Looking at what the FO has done with the draft in the past, I really think that Gordon is the pick. If Rodon or Aiken (not gonna happen) make it to them then they will probably pick them, but Gordon has the defensive ability, a good hit tool from the left side, the bloodlines, the athleticism, the speed, and could even be moved to pitcher as a four out backup plan. He also seems like a good make-up guy as far as I can tell.

    And Hoffman is not going to be considered. The TJ surgery adds 1-2 years to his timeline and gives him an extra 25% chance to bust.

  • In reply to BABIP:

    Thank you. I would be inclined to believe the first 3 on this but there's a gap for them until the next group I think if Gordon isn't there and they are not high on Nola (which is entirely possible) then they may just go underslot.

    Nola was more industry buzz than Cubs buzz and I went with that for this mock. I have been championing Gordon for this pick for about a month now. So part of me wanted to put some of the industry buzz I've heard out there, part of me wanted to give my readers a bit of a twist (I'm quite sure they expected me to say Gordon!), and part of me wanted to talk about him to discuss the often misunderstood concept of Best Player Available, which Jason Parks and Mauricio did as well, so it turned out to be a recurring theme of sorts.

  • That seem to be the only real drama at this point. There are conflicting rumors that the owner Jeff Loria wants Rondon and the scouting staff wants Jackson.

  • In reply to Steve Flores:

    Yes, it will be interesting to see how it turns out but if Loria is serious on this (and I wouldn't put it past him to consider attendance over his scout's opinions) then he will probably win out.

  • I liked Hoffman as the pick when healthy so If an underslot deal can be made I still think its worth it.
    John, with an underslot deal, has it happened that a player would commit for more money and decide after the pick to go back to college or some team has more money left and steals that player away?

  • How does Pentecost stack up to Buster Posey? I know at the time of the draft Posey wasn't projected to hit for power, but had very good bat control.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    He's not that close, really. Posey was and is a better athlete who figured to eventually be a very good defender as well as a very good hitter. Posey always had more potential for power because his swing was so much cleaner.

    That is not to say Pentecost can't be a good player, but you might be looking more at a guy who hits .285 with a good OBP and 10-12 HRs, which is good production from a catcher but we aren't talking 4th pick type of talent.

    However, if the Cubs feel he is a good bet to reach those kinds of numbers and will sign for underslot, then he may present the best value at that pick.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I can get on board with Pentecost, if we get more talent later in the draft. I am not sold on Castillo, frankly, and catching is a real area of need for us.

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    if you're thinking of going with an underslot deal, why not go whole hog and do that with hoffman instead of hoping and praying with lower ceiling guys.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Because there is different hope and prayer with Hoffman, that he will be healthy and become the same pitcher he was before the injury. We shouldn't assume he will be.

  • Here is my thought Hoffman was one of there favorites before. The TJ is like smoking in the Bathroom everyone is doing it. Lol. No its an Elbow issue they are very fixable and it was a freak injury, its not like he has major mechanical issues. If it was a shoulder then it a different story.

  • Kyle Schwarber?

  • I'm fine with Nola or Gordon really. Pretty risky to take pentacost at 4 and we know thats not cubs philosophy. But with the new CBA system this might be the draft that they try to extract as much talent as possible with multiple high singing picks and do an under slot since they are kinda the odd man out at number 4. My guess is they take gordon even though id be slightly happier with nola. Either way its gonna be pretty darn interesting. June 5th can't come soon enough..

  • fb_avatar

    There was some rumbling last night about something that could be very disturbing. It seems Alex Jackson has been whispering to Oregon that he is leaning towards going to school if he is not taken in he top 3. It actually makes sense for the kid but man could it screw up the draft board if that rumor has any legs.

  • In reply to Richard Hood:

    Its not going to happen. He had a hard time getting a scholarship because school knew he was going to go to sign.

  • In reply to Richard Hood:

    Got to think that is just some posturing going on and not truly what will happen.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to ced landrum:

    From the kids perspective it could be either or. If he spends 3 years showing that he can stay behind the plate and hits the way everyone seems to think is a given, he will defintely be the top pick when he comes out. If it is just a smoke screen for negotiations then if he goes 4 or 5 they will come in thinking he wants top 3 money. Win/Win.

    The downside is that teams outside the top 3 could let him pass like what happened with Appel 2 years ago.

  • How long do you think before word leaks as to who the Astros are going to pick? Do they really have anything to lose by showing their cards early?

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    Something bad could happen to the kid between now and the draft. An injury, illness, arrest, etc. By putting their preference out there now they gain nothing and open themselves up to potentially bad PR. Also, their preference may come down to something like player A at X dollar amount or player B at Y dollar amount. Saying that publicly can also open them up to bad PR or get players/agents/family members upset. There is absolutely no reason for them to show their cards early.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    You're right. That makes sense. I'm just getting antsy for Thursday night.

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    I'd say we find out the day of the draft, maybe the day before.

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    I would guess Thur morning

  • I hope the Cubs take Nola just so I can hear everyone in the stands singing Nola no no no no Nola when he comes in to pitch!

  • In reply to Cubzwin:

    There is that ;)

  • John,

    If Rodon falls to the cubs, where would he rank with our top prospects? Number 3?

  • In reply to JLynch2247:

    I'd go #3, yes, for now.

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    I like Conforto a lot. He HITS left handed, has good plate discipline and should go through the minors fairly fast. Maybe ready by 2016.

  • In reply to Theodore Anderson:

    You could definitely make a case for him at 4 but it does seem unlikely. If only he was a catcher...

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    I know at best he's probably a left fielder with not a ton of power but some. I just have a feeling he's going to be a Mark Grace type of hitter.

  • In reply to Theodore Anderson:

    I think he's going to hit and he's a pretty sure bet to make it, but I think that position value hurts him in the end. When you think Cubs draft, you think middle of the field (C, P, SS, CF) unless it's a rare bat, as Kris Bryant was last year.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    You may have sources on this, but I'm a wondering if this would be true in an underslot pick. I say that because they were reportedly scouting Ryan McMahon last year if the first pick had been a pitcher. He's not a rare bat, but would have provided a decent floor. If they elect to go college bat as a floor/underslot play in the first round, maybe Pentecost's positional value would win out but would hope at least total player value would be in play.

    If they go Gordon, then obviously that's BPA meets positional value.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Left handed hitters who can hit and that will make it, are valuable position wise if that position isn't first base.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Not corner guys who can't defend and may not hit for power.

  • I would trade Soler to Miami for their competitive balance pick 37 and draft Luke Weaver and hope Matt Imhof is still there for the Cubs 2nd.

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    In reply to Gator:

    I would like to get a CB pick and maybe go after those two guys, but not if it costs us Soler. He's worth way more than that pick

  • In reply to Gator:

    Soler no, but maybe in a Samardzija deal

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2014/06/cubs-asked-about-draft-pick-for-samardzija.html

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    In reply to David Davidon:

    In order to get that, though, they would have to trade Shark either a) before Thursday, for a 2014 pick, or b) between July 21 (when the 2015 picks are awarded by lottery), and July 31. Just that 10-day window.

    You cannot trade CBL picks during the offseason, according to AZ Phil, who is usually right on such things

  • In reply to Gator:

    Soler would be a top ten pick in a draft, no way you trade him for the 37th pick.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    At some point you have to take Hitters and flip them for pitchers. If not Marlins then someone else.

    If not Soler then someone. Time to be proactive.

  • In reply to Gator:

    Miami already traded their CB pick and they can only be trade once I believe. Also, I'm getting conflicting info on the rule that CB picks have to be trade by June 1 if they are to be traded. Anybody have an idea on this?

  • Fantastic article. It was really a lot of fun, especially getting to hear the explanation of the Touki/Newcomb/Holmes positioning.

    I love Nola, but I'm very confident the Cubs go Gordon. If they're the two the decision comes down to, I don't see how we lose in that situation. I see Gordon as sort of an Almora of the infield if that makes any sense to anyone else.

    I like so many of the arms in this draft, I wish pick trading was possible. Trade down to get more picks, grab both Jays picks with the Shark trade, whatever way the FO wanted to do it because I love guys like Touki, Foley, Hoffman, Holmes, Newcomb, Kopech, Fedde, Beede. This draft is stacked with high upside arms. If only the MLB CBA caught up with every other CBA and allowed pick trading.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Thanks. I think the consensus right now isn't on a player -- it is this: Don't believe everything you read or hear.

    FOs have no incentive to tell us who they are considering or who they aren't. Everything they say is carefully measured right now and that will continue until the day of the draft.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Right. Much more so than any other sport because of the flexibility of the money slots.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    It's crazy this year. If I eliminated every player who one trusted writer or source said was "out" the only players left would be Brady Aiken and maybe Max Pentecost on an underslot deal.

  • Rumors were still floating today about an Astros underslot deal with Gordon. Seems like only a few actually believe it, but this could actually lead to Aiken for the Cubs.

    On the other hand, unrealistic dreaming of unexpected future pleasant results is a curse of me as a Cub fans.

  • In reply to springs:

    Haha! Don't hold your breath on Gordon to Astros.

  • I met him in a club down in old Soho
    Where you drink champagne and it tastes just like cherry-cola
    See-oh-el-aye cola
    He walked up to me and he asked to pitch
    I asked him his name and in a dark brown voice he said Nola
    El-oh-el-aye Nola na-na-na-Nola

    Well I'm not the world's most physical man
    But when he threw his two-seamer, nearly broke my hand
    Oh my Nola, na-na-na-na Nola
    Well I'm not dumb but I can't understand
    Why he walked like a woman and talked like a man
    Oh my Nola, na-na-na-na Nola

  • We should trade our whole draft for Ricky Williams!

  • Awesome article John. Great job getting everybody together to do this.
    Regarding Jacob Bukauskus I think that would be a wasted pick. Just a couple of weeks ago Bukauskus was moving up the draft board towards the 20's range, i.e. the $2 Million dollar range.... and then he came out and reiterated again that he is definitely honoring his commitment to North Carolina. So now that he's dropped even further (because of sign-ability) and he's already established that $2 Million isn't enough, I just don't see how any team can get it done unless it's ready to blow up the rest of it's draft.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Thanks. They wouldn't go into it blindly, the Cubs would only pick Bukauskus if they had assurances he would sign.

  • fb_avatar

    OT, but Gammons has a good point on veteran leadership, and something for us to keep in mind as we look at acquisitions:

    http://www.gammonsdaily.com/peter-gammons-veteran-leadership-essential-to-young-players/

    I felt like DeJesus filled this role with the team, and we need a vet in there next year who is respected and can mentor the younger players. Some folks think the Royals did not address that in building their club, and that's a factor to having so many of their hitting prospects essentially fail to meet expectations

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Matt Wieters could be a good fit. Wonder if they will pursue him this off-season

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Javier Bryant:

    Wieters is not a FA until 2016.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Zonk:

    Rizzo seems to be morphing into that guy, though he is a bit young to take on the full brunt of it. I think we'll probably add a LH left fielder via free agency this winter (Rasmus and Cabrera seem the best fit) who could take on some of that. If James Shields is traded at the deadline, I think the Cubs should be all over him because he knows about winning with a young team.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I was thinking OF as well, because the need is so great there anyway. LF would be fine. Those guys, plus maybe Denard Span, Cuddyer, even Torri Hunter. I feel like we'll sign a bat for the OF though.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Zonk:

    Span is a possibility. Given org needs, I'd be very surprised if they signed a right handed outfielder, though.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    On ESPN 1000, I can't remember who (someone from the Cubs org) but someone was speaking to veteran leadership and brought up that very fact that Rizzo is a big time leader in the clubhouse, and that people don't realize how outspoken he is and is already a team leader. That's very good news for the Cubs future, as Castro is not that type of guy but I think as Castro matures further and has continued success consistently that he can become a steadying influence on some of the younger Latino players (believe it or not) but more privately and 1 to 1.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    When the entire media ran to Rizzo (and not Samardzija) to get a quote on the Wrigley renovations mess, I realized that he is the leader in that locker room. It should also really scare the Cubs that he's that frustrated with it.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    I'm not too worried about it. Is he sick of the crappy clubhouse when even the visitor's clubhouses at other parks are better? Of course he is, anyone would be, he's seen the drawings of the great new clubhouse, training area, and batting cages (instead of a crappy roll down net in the snack room) that are coming....but Rizzo is also a smart dude, and he realizes what the situation is, he knows if it was the Cubs choice the clubhouse would be done already. He's just frustrated with the situation, not at the Cubs themselves....but the Cubs are going ahead with the build soon, the city will approve it, and regardless the clubhouse and that area will get going after this season and even if the RTO's were some how able to get an injunction on the Cubs (i doubt it) they could continue with the clubhouse as that doesn't affect the outer field walls...I think.

  • Not attack Mauricio because I've read this comment a lot, but I would like to stop hearing the Gordon has good "blood lines." Whether it is a valid point or not (seems a little simplistic to me), these are not horses or AKC dogs.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    True, but athleticism is inherited to some degree, includingthe type of athleticism best suited for baseball (hand-eye coordination, strong hands/wrists, strong throwing arm) as are certain traits that make you a good fit for baseball. I don't think you can dismiss it entirely and assume that baseball players are created solely by their environment. Genetics most certainly play a role.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John, Mike, et al:

    I am not dismissing genetics and inherent athleticism etc. Rather I fee like using the term "bloodlines" is better suited to thoroughbreds and German Shepards and is a little degrading. I guess it's just semantics and I am being nit-picky

    And Mike, just because someone or something else uses a term doesn't mean it is kosher. The MLB is also apparently OK with a team called simply "The Indians" who sport a completely demeaning mascot. Just an example, I really do not what to go down this rabbit hole...just wanted to point out that maybe there is a better way to praise a kid's talents than repeat words that others use.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to JohnCC:

    Here's an article from mlb.com which uses exactly the terminology "bloodlines" to refer to the phenomena that relatives of former players tend to be excellent players, themselves.

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130605&content_id=49708928&c_id=mlb

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    ...also getting constant advice from your dad as you are growing up when he's a major leaguer vs a plumber has to give you an edge s well.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    I do not disagree.

  • It has been interesting to read all the comments and differing opinions. Just imagine what it sounds like in the Cub's draft room. Here is an outside the box revenue stream for Mr. Ricketts: fans pay to sit in the draft room the days leading up to the draft: Ok, obviously a joke, but we are trying like crazy to figure out what they are thinking. In the past 6 months I have been in favor of selecting any of the "top 6" possibilities at one time or another so on Thursday I will probably have concerns and excitement for whomever they select, trusting the FO to select the player they want for the reasons they like. It has been fun, but I am ready to see what happens throughout the draft.

  • You've always been out in front on everything John, that you liked Gordon to the Cubs for over a month is no surprise. Speaking of being out in front, I presume you're going to have a 2015 MLB mock draft ready immediately after Thursday? Nah, I know you'll you'll need a good break ;) ha ha

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    Thanks! I think we will all need a break from the draft for a while when this is done! I'm thinking maybe September when we will likely be (quietly) rooting for that draft pick.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    "break" from the draft? I'm not following.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Right! Alright Mike, draft list is on you buddy

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Ha ha, I'm sure ;) Regardless I was thinking more of a list of potential top prospects and not a mock

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    In reply to ChiRy:

    Some guys to keep an eye on: http://throughthefencebaseball.com/2015-mlb-draft-25-players/42946

    I'll tell you that you can probably knock Carson Fulmer off that list. He has a great arm but at 5'11" can't see the Cubs taking him early in the first round.

    If we're picking at 1.1 (I think we will), Matuella is the guy to watch. He could be our long sought after future ace.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Please god, give me some mike matuella. Now I'm really wanting that 1 slot for next year

  • I watched some of the Arkansas/Virginia game on Saturday and Virginia sophomore lefty Nathan Kirby was filthy. He gave up 1 hit in 8 innings. I was watching to see juniors Derek Fisher and Mike Papi as possible 2nd round picks. Papi is an on base machine who has 11 HRs in a pitchers ball park. Fisher missed some time with an injury and could slide. Both hitters are left handed.

  • off topic.. watched Stroman last start. looked good. kept his fastball down. around 93-95.. slider was pretty nasty

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Unfortunately I think that's why he won't be traded. He's already producing at the major league level, so why would they deal him?

  • Love the motley group you assembled for this, John. It's nice to hear their opinions on the various talent in the draft.

    Knowing this Cubs FO, though, it's unlikely that Nola is taken at 4. Gordon or Jackson more likely, because they are BPA period. Nola just isn't good enough to justify a 1.4 pick for a pitcher. There really appears to be more risk for drafting pitchers this high in the draft, than for position players. He just doesn't have a high enough ceiling for that pick.

    Also, no way they do any kind of underslot signing at the 4th overall pick in the draft. This may be the last time in a very long time that they will pick this low, therefore they will most definitely go with BPA here, and probably another position player if Rodon doesn't slip.

    Pretty much all of my knowledge (or lack thereof ;-) for these opinions has been obtained from reading this site and the comment sections. So it's not like I'm not saying stuff that hasn't been heard here before. Kudos to the Den and its Denizens for the learning I've gotten from you!

  • In reply to HefCA:

    Thanks, but as I said, BPA doesn't necessarily have that meaning. Always gets confused with highest ceiling. I wouldn't hold your breath on Jackson.

  • In reply to HefCA:

    I'd bet the farm that they will pick pretty low next year.

  • Hey John,

    I'm sticking with my gut on who I want the Cubs to select. I haven't really changed my mind much other than moving B. Aiken higher after reading the positive scouting reports on him. My top 3:

    1. LHP - C. Rodon
    2. LHP - B. Aiken
    3. C/OF - A. Jackson
    4. ??? (underslot deal involving M. Pentecost)

    I'm still very high on C. Rodon. Obviously, I haven't looked at his medicals or reviewed his MRIs, but as long as the doctors have cleared him I'd still take him #1. I think he can become more consistent under professional instruction/training. In fact, if M. Appel were in this draft I'd still take my top 3 (C. Rodon, B. Aiken and A. Jackson) over M. Appel. I think we dodged a bullet by having Houston take him before we got the chance. I am not a M. Appel fan...

    I still really really like A. Jackson and think we need to stick to the BPA plan that Theo and Jed keep espousing to the media. I see no scenario, other than maybe T. Kolek, where a player would have a higher value/ceiling at pick #4.

    I do NOT want A. Nola at 4. Great pitcher, but too many question marks/funky delivery for my taste. I like N. Gordon, but A. Jackson will have a significantly better bat IMO. I like J. Hoffman but obviously he's hurt so that would be too risky I concede.

    This year kinda is a bummer, in terms, of where we are picking, but I hope it'll end well. We'll see I guess

  • In reply to I miss Ron Santo:

    Why are you assuming that Jackson is the BPA at that spot? Because he can put up better offensive numbers?

    The BPA means a lot of things and it includes positional value, floor, and likelihood of making an impact, that in turn depends on a lot of factors that the Cubs will look at very closely -- much more than what we do here.

    I will be very surprised if he gets taken by the Cubs and it has nothing to do with underslot and everything to do with the likelihood that they do not, in fact, see him as the BPA.

  • Yahoo reporting cubs inquiring about a trade package involving a draft pick for Samardzija - possibly Colorado. Wonder if they made a mistake and the cubs were in on that marlins/bucs trade. Mildly surprised we did not cough up a bullpen arm for that pick.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to cubsdude74:

    Maybe I'm misunderstanding what you're trying to say, but The only draft picks that can be traded are competitive balance picks. I don't see that happening. It's not nearly enough. Besides, the Cubs have made it clear that they want MLB ready or near MLB ready talent in exchange for Smudge.

  • Yahoo is saying it's part of the deal along with bonus-pool money and I'm assuming other players. I'd be pleased with Gray, another player and that draft pick.

    http://www.rotoworld.com/headlines/mlb/433184/cubs-have-talked-draft-pick-for-samardzija

  • In reply to cubsdude74:

    It says they are shopping him and not that there is an emerging trade.

  • What time does the draft start on Thursday?

  • In reply to Ike03:

    7 I believe with a pre show at 6

  • 7 eastern that is 6 central

  • Unless one of the top-three fall to us, I still think the Cubs will take a quality college pitcher, either Beede[my pick] or Nola. Both have the right make-up/talent to be successful at the ML level. I just can't see going after a high-school position player with several minor league position stars ready for Cubs within the next few yrs.

  • I still take Nola at 1.4 if Rondon is not there. For the 2nd round I would like to see either Imhof or Weaver in an ideal world. That changes the pitching complexition in the minors. Pierce Johnson Eric Joskisch Kyle Hendricks CJ Edwards Aaron Nola and either Weaver and Imhof would be attractive. Couple that with someone moving from the mlb pen to competing for a starter spot, then you have value at the position. You would start to have a surplus at the position.

  • My only Question with Nola is when is the last LSU pitcher to be a consitstant starter in the Majors? My issue with going way underslot is that you have to know your going to have a couple players slip to you that you know you can sign or else it doesn't make a bunch of sense. You can pick a couple college seniors who have very limited leverage and save some money so unless your sure going way under is scary because you don't sign someone you lose that $

  • All this talk of "floors and ceilings." What about walls and windows?

  • In reply to Hey Hey:

    Kris Bryant's eyes are a window to the Hall of Fame

  • Good Article John !!

    Does Nick Gordon's have his brother's speed by any chance ?

  • In reply to SouthsideB:

    No but he has good speed and more pop

  • If we select Gordon, what do we do with all of the other short stops in the Cubs organization, including Gleybar Torres? It is not like we can move them to third base since we are full there as well. We need outfield depth, catching and pitching so I would go with Alex Jackson. With the pitching that the Cubs will get back from trading the Shark, the Cubs could come away with this years best bat in the draft, and some prospects that would be at the top of this draft class, and are close to big league ready.

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