The second day of the draft doesn’t offer the same quantity of talent as the first two rounds, but there are still plenty of future stars hidden among the 239 players taken Tuesday. It’s almost impossible to say which of these players will emerge as superstars or even serviceable players, but there were still plenty of immediately interesting names taken in rounds three through ten.
Matthew Allan, MLB Pipeline’s top-ranked high school pitcher, was taken by the Mets in the third round. Allan easily could have gone in the first round if not for signability concerns. Allan’s fastball touches 97 mph, and he has frontline starter potential, but as a high school senior, Allan is committed to Florida State.
Ethan Hearn, one of the best high school catchers in the draft, went to the Cubs in the sixth round. Hearn has plus power and arm strength, but his approach at the plate and his defense behind the plate could stand to be refined.
Graeme Stinson was a potential first-round pick whose season was cut short by a hamstring injury. He may not stick as a starter, but his slider could turn him into a devastating reliever.
Tyler Callihan went to the Reds in the third round. He’s another player that could have gone earlier, but he lacks a position.
It’s tempting to look for trends through all the picks so far. The Astros, the de facto trendsetters of MLB, took college players in nine out of their ten picks. The only high school player they chose was Colin Barber, a center fielder from Pleasant Valley High School in Chico, CA. After selecting Korey Lee with their first pick, selecting primarily college players seems rote by comparison, but it’s interesting that a team with such a highly touted player development program would target older players.
The Dodgers likewise went heavy on college players. Aside from Jimmy Lewis, a six-foot-six pitcher from Lake Travis High School in Texas, the Dodgers took college players with ten of their 11 picks.
Hitters were certainly the more popular decision on the first day. A pitcher wasn’t taken until the Reds took Nick Lodolo seventh overall yesterday. Some teams went heavy on hitters through the first two days.
In their first draft since Farhan Zaidi took over as President of Baseball Operations, the Giants took nine position players out of their first ten picks, four of which were shortstops. The only pitcher they selected was Caleb Kilian of Texas Tech, and he wasn’t selected until the eighth round. This was the first time since 1969 that the Giants have taken seven position players in the first seven rounds.
That hasn’t been the case for every team though. The Mariners took nine pitchers with their first 11 picks. Two of those pitchers, George Kirby and Ty Adcock, hailed from Elon University, which has a highly touted pitching development program. The Arizona Diamondbacks took five pitchers in their first six picks.
Overall, a little less than half of the players selected through the first two days were pitchers, so this doesn’t seem to indicate a tectonic shift in draft philosophy. More so, the top of the class was offense heavy.
As interesting as who was chosen is who wasn’t chosen. Al Leiter’s son Jack Leiter wasn’t selected, as he is committed to Vanderbilt; he’ll be draft eligible again in two years. Maurice Hampton, a high school centerfielder who was MLB Pipeline’s number 29 prospect wasn’t taken, as well. Hampton is a two-sport athlete who may opt to play baseball and football at LSU.
The draft concludes Wednesday, and there’s still plenty of talent to pick up. There are several highly-ranked high school players still available, and we might see teams take a chance on them.
Kenny Kelly is a writer for Beyond the Box Score and McCovey Chronicles. You can follow him on Twitter @KennyKellyWords.