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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Baseball America’s First Mock Draft Has Kyle Schwarber Going to Pirates

Kyle Schwarber (Photo Credit: IU Athletics)
Kyle Schwarber (Photo Credit: IU Athletics)

Baseball America released their first mock draft of the year and they have the Pittsburgh Pirates selecting Indiana catcher Kyle Schwarber. This might seem like an odd choice to some with the Pirates having Reese McGuire at West Virginia and Jin-De Jhang at Bradenton, both legit prospects, but there are two things to point out. First is that you always take the best player available, because nothing is a guarantee as far as the future and that leads to the second point, very few people think Schwarber will stick at catcher.

He is a strong lefty bat with good size and power. His future is likely at first base, or at a corner outfield spot, with DH also likely if he goes to an AL team. Schwarber is hitting .345/.452/.598 with 32 walks and 24 extra base hits in 44 games for the Hoosiers. All of his value is in his bat, but he is projected to hit in the middle of the order in the pros, so you can live with the limited defensive value. I’ve included a video below from Baseball America.

This is the first of many mock drafts you will see in the upcoming weeks from major sources. The draft starts on June 5th, four weeks from today, with the Pirates making their first three selections that day. Check back a little later today for our second preview of players in the Pirates range. You can check out the first one here.

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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.

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leadoff

When you draft in the 20’s you don’t get a 5 tool player. I like Gillespie better, but I would not have a problem if they took this guy. The Pirates are still kicking themselves for not taking a guy named Adams playing college ball right down the road because he was not a 5 tool player. St.Louis has done well taking a player that has 1or 2 very good tools drafting down in the draft.

stickyweb

And every other MLB team is kicking themselves for passing him up too, though he very well could be a platoon player. And if STL thought so much of him, they’d probably have taken him in one of the 22 rounds before the one they actually took him in.
The difference with the Cards is that they can develop players very well, whether or not they’re highly rated by the industry. So in their case it’s much more about the development than the drafting.

Y2JGQ2

As i’ve said before: best available at 24 or wherever we pick is irrelevant. The actual consensus difference of best available talent between 20-45 is insignificant, so you move on to quite simply, “in the range of talent where this pick is, what will give us the MOST VALUE” Again a first baseman who is rated very slightly higher than a 3rd baseman who is projected to stick at 3rd- you take the third baseman. Noone with a brain would ever do differently. A) harder position to fill B) more trade value C) more projected team need in ML D) lack of organizational depth at the position. Best available is only useful when there is a huge different between levels of talent. There won’t be at where we are picking this year

Y2JGQ2

John- I know what you are saying, but the very definition of “best available player” means simply the best available player. That’s what i always have an issue with. Just like MVP is most valuable player, not player who had the best year. I stand behind my statement that we should be saying the pirates should draft the player with the highest value to the organization, not the “best player available” because i don’t believe its the same thing

Y2JGQ2

There are going to be about 10 players at least who are about equal in terms of talent at 24, so at that point, best available player is irrelevant, its too close to make a determination on that (unless a top ten talent falls) so what do you? You pick the player with the most organizational value, which would literally never be a right handed starting pitcher or a catcher. So….if they choose either one of those players, they really aren’t paying attention

Y2JGQ2

Don’t like it. There are plenty of power hitters with no defense you can pick up in the 8th round.

Y2JGQ2

….and they said Pedro would hit for average and power too. I stand by my previous statement. I’m not concerned by the floor of an 8th, 11th, and 14th round prep power hitter. you draft ten of them per year, sign 7 and if 1 player out of 14 comes out of it, great. In the first round, you don’t take players who suck at defense, he’s a 3 tool player…at best, that’s not a first rounder, especially in the national league

EWS34

I like a top 10 bat at 24. The team needs more players who can hit, and hit for power. We have too many hope he develops, and need more cant wait for this guy in the infield minor leagues.

Y2JGQ2

Who need players who can hit, run, and play defense. Noone’s fault but our own if we keep using our top picks on pitchers instead of highly ranked infielders when we have a SINKER BALL pitching staff

CTBucco

His bat looks quick, but his feet are not. I wonder how his college stats compare to IU alum and former Pirate prospect Dickerson? I think I’d rather have Gillaspie who goes with the next pick or a high-upside prep bat a la Meadows – preferably an IFer.

Kevin_Young

Scharber definitely has a more powerful/athletic build. Dickerson has always looked a little bit awkward…

Steve Zielinski

Dickerson also had a sore during his draft year.

sweetleb

also is he using a wood bat?

sweetleb

can he part-time catch and play 1b?

Macchamp74

Does he throw right handed? Can he play 3rd base?

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