Baseball America has updated their top 100 draft prospects list and expanded it to 200 spots. Before the draft begins two weeks from tonight, they will lengthen the list to the top 500 draft prospects. In their top 100 list, they had prep pitcher Spencer Adams in the 24th spot, which is where the Pittsburgh Pirates make their first selection. Adams remained there, as it looks like they only expanded list, while not making any changes at the top. The new link has scouting reports and videos for many of the players.
We posted a scouting report and video on Adams here a few weeks ago. He has been mentioned often in the Pirates range recently, so he is certainly a name to remember. You can check out our latest draft preview here, covering four new players.
While the first round pick has been hard enough to figure out this year, it obviously gets more difficult the further down you go. With the Pirates picking 65th and 74th overall on the first day, it’s good to at least take a look at the kind of talent they could get, even if you can’t figure out the specific player. Baseball America has Arkansas starter Chris Oliver ranked 65th. We posted a scouting report and video for him a few weeks back that you can check out here. Oliver is more about potential than actual current results. He has room to fill out and already throws mid-90’s, but he only has two solid pitches, lacking a good change-up and his control isn’t the best, so some think he may end up as a strong pitcher out of the bullpen instead.
In the 74th spot, they have South Carolina catcher Grayson Greiner, who is someone we have mentioned often. Greiner was ranked much higher earlier in the year, usually ranked right outside the first round. He is hitting .333/.405/.523 through 55 games. Greiner is a solid defensive player, with an arm that is slightly above average. While his offensive stats look good, there are some concerns over whether he will hit enough in the pros, due to a swing that can get long at times.
Those two players show how important the first round pick is this year for the Pirates. While you could get a mid-rotation starter and solid average catcher with those two picks, you could also just as easily get a reliever and a back-up with them, which isn’t a lot of value from picks in that range. The top of the draft is strong, so it’s probably just a matter of picking the best player out of a talented group that will be left when the Pirates pick comes up.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.