We have three new mock drafts published within the last 24 hours, with Kiley McDaniel releasing his second attempt on ESPN, Baseball America posting their fifth attempt, and also the first mock from Fangraphs. The Pittsburgh Pirates pick seventh overall on June 10th. They also have the 31st overall pick, which is mentioned in two of these mock drafts.
I’m including links at the bottom of this article to every Draft Prospect Watch involving these players mentioned below.
We start with McDaniel, who has an interesting system to making his pick. He gives odds for which player it could be in each spot. That’s an easy way of adding more guesses to increase your probability of being correct, but I like it because it also incorporates the chances of that player fitting in a certain spot and still being available to select.
McDaniel’s guess for the Pirates is Arkansas outfielder Heston Kjerstad, who has been in this spot numerous times already in prior mock drafts. McDaniel gives him a 40% chance of being selected seventh overall. He’s followed by catcher Patrick Bailey and pitcher Emerson Hancock at 20% each. The other 20% is apparently the remaining field.
McDaniel also covered the 31st overall pick and he has the Pirates taking Arizona catcher Austin Wells (no odds given by McDaniel this low in the draft). I think this is a good selection that fits here UNLESS the Pirates take Patrick Bailey with the first pick.
Baseball America has the Pirates taking Georgia right-handed pitcher Emerson Hancock with the seventh overall pick. The real question here is whether Hancock would actually drop this far and would the Pirates then stray from their rumored desire to select a college hitter.
BA says that the Pirates have been tough to nail down and they could also go the high school bat route, with outfielders Zac Veen, Austin Hendrick and Robert Hassell also being mentioned.
BA has the Pirates taking Auburn right-handed pitcher Tanner Burns with the 31st overall pick. We haven’t covered him here yet, so I’ll be sure to get to him before the draft (already have Saturday’s weekly article done, so I might do an extra for Sunday). I’ve passed over him because he has the ever popular “safe” tag, as a starting pitcher likely to reach his 3/4 starter upside.
Fangraphs is late to the mock game this year. In the first attempt from Eric Longenhagen, he has the Pirates taking Heston Kjerstad, while noting that this spot is also the floor for New Mexico State shortstop Nick Gonzales and Emerson Hancock. He has Gonzales going fourth in his mock and Hancock getting selected sixth. He did not make a selection for 31st overall, stopping two spots earlier.
Draft Prospect Watch Links
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.