2021 Discussion in Preparation for the Amateur Draft – July 1, 2021

This is the Phuture Phillies forum for the discussion of prospects eligible for the amateur draft that is scheduled to start in 11 days (July 11-13, 2021).  You can place video, scouting reports, or just comments here.  You can reference these weekly discussions on the menu above.

The Phillies have the 13th pick in a first round of 29 selections.  The Astros don’t have a first-round pick.  (Or a second-round pick)  There are 20 rounds plus two supplemental rounds.

The Phillies have a bonus pool allotment of $8,295,000.  Bonus assignments for the Phillies’ picks are –

  1. 13th overall: $4,197,300
  2. 49th overall: $1,507,600
  3. 84th overall: $721,900
  4. 114th overall: $507,400
  5. 145th overall: $375,200
  6. 175th overall: $284,200
  7. 205th overall: $222,100
  8. 235th overall: $177,400
  9. 265th overall: $155,800
  10. 295th overall: $146,100
  11. 325th overall: picks in rounds 11 thru 20 are each capped at $125, 000 which doesn’t count against the bonus pool; any portion exceeding this figure counts against the bonus pool.
  12. 355th overall: capped at $125, 000
  13. 385th overall: capped at $125, 000
  14. 415th overall: capped at $125, 000
  15. 445th overall: capped at $125, 000
  16. 475th overall: capped at $125, 000
  17. 505th overall: capped at $125, 000
  18. 535th overall: capped at $125, 000
  19. 565th overall: capped at $125, 000
  20. 595th overall: capped at $125, 000

Contracts for non-drafted free agents are capped at $20,000.

Feel free to discuss the 2021 international signing period, too.  It began on January 15, 2021, and runs through December 15, 2021.

The Phillies’ international signing pool is $4,732,700.  We were penalized some of our bonus pool for signing Zach Wheeler.  The Angels are receiving the same amount and were penalized for signing Anthony Rendon.  Only the Yankees (Gerrit Cole ) and Braves (Marcell Ozuna plus penalties for the 2017 scandal) are receiving less.

International bonus pools are a hard cap.  Teams cannot exceed their allotments.  No trading of bonus pool allotments this year.

This space is for the discussion of prospects in the upcoming draft and international signing period.  This is NOT a place for you to complain about past picks/signings or the organization’s past/current draft and international philosophies.

66 thoughts on “2021 Discussion in Preparation for the Amateur Draft – July 1, 2021

  1. 13. Phillies: Andrew Painter, RHP, Calvary Christian Academy (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
    This has been a spot where Benny Montgomery has almost been cemented in place, and it’s true the Phillies have interest in the toolsy outfielder in their backyard. But they also like Painter’s size, how his arm works and his feel for pitching, so it was time for a change.

    1. I would love a pick of Painter. Exactly the type of prospect we should be picking with our first round picks. High upside arms with elite fastballs.

      Imo prospects like Benny Montgomery scare me. Imo high school hitters are the hardest to project because they so rarely face great stuff. Anyone can look great against low to mid 80s.

  2. Like most have not seen most of these guysBUT since 2000 thru 2016 horrible track record on top ranked prep pitchers. Only one has really had success Kershaw. Very risky taking HS over college arm or bat.

    On positive note the author of the article I read with these stats said Abel best HS pitcher he ever saw

  3. Rocker looked bad last night in a big game and it will certainly hurt him in the draft. He might even get to 13. For those that don’t know, his dad is the Eagles’ DL coach and a firmer NFL player.

    1. Rocker’s entire season has been well…kind of Rocky. I think he falls quite a bit.

      Not sure how you pass on Bednar if he’s there. Buy the bats grow the arms.

      1. Agree DMAR…Rocker’s year has been very good, but there are those doubts in the big games.
        His metrics, however, are right there for a great pitcher.
        IP-106.0 Hits-59 …WHIP -0.90…H/9 -5…..BB/9 -3….SO/9 -13

        I do think if he could shed about 20 lbs now while he is yuong, would help his cause more.

        1. The odds of Kumar Rocker making it to the Phillies are very, very long (just not gonna’ happen). Mike Rizzo is reportedly planning to offer Rocker ~1M over slot to attempt to slide the RHP to the Nats at 1-11.
          I think Jackson Jobe has a better chance to slip down to 1-13. If he does, it will be interesting to see if Brian Barber is willing to gamble his first round pick on a prep RHP for the second year in a row.

          1. If Rocker keeps getting bigger…..he could have some issues down the road.
            So he has to maintain his current wieght or lose a few lbs.
            But he has the stuff and Rizzo would probably take him if there at 11.

          2. I’d be happy with a high ceiling high school pitcher. Yes, the risk is certainly there but I think you need to chase high ceiling kids in the first round, arms preferably. They’re just so expensive to get in free agency.

            1. I agree, I’m always looking for arms. Elite arms in FA are crazy expensive so you have to take the risk and try to develop some internally.

              Max Sherzer will be turning 37 soon and there’s talk that he’s going to get $30M per year. Same with Kershaw who’s 33.

              The Phillies got mondo lucky with Wheeler. If Wheeler hit FA now, he’ll easily be commanding $30M+ per year.

            2. Yes, the Phillies got a little lucky with Wheeler, but they did their homework and struck quickly before the market was established. I crucify them for mistakes they have made, but you have to give them credit for a really good signing there.

  4. Hinkie, I know Montgomery has been mocked to us for a while, and Painter seems to be placed in that latest Mock just for a change, but I still like Bachman as an option for us.

  5. Been watching Rocker last 6 weeks. Topping out around 94 sitting round 92. Secondary stuff ok. I go gunner hoglund or wicks at this point if rocker ever did drop.

    1. 92? Secondary just ok? That’s not a good sign for a potential first round pick. If you’re hovering 92, you need to have an elite type secondary pitch, especially for a RH pitcher.

  6. And Rocker is already big weight wise. Not a thin guy that’s gonna pack on muscle and gain mph

  7. This franchise has won 2 World Series both with dominating lefthander who had off speed out pitch. Carlton slider and Hamels change up. Jordan Wicks has a wipeout change up. Grades a 70 and I saw an analysis it would be in 98% tile of mlb change ups already. Some scouts comp him as a better Ryu.

  8. .

    1-13 Phillies … Sal Frelick

    They have Benny Montgomery going to the LAA @ 1-9, and say Colson Montgomery could be in play for the Phillies if they don’t draft Frelick.

  9. Both pitching and hitting cupboards empty. Probably some bats from lower mid levels. If I m Phils the fastest fix is a pitcher in first round preferably college.

    Much cheaper on open market and trading for bats vs. arms. Phils have done the project able outfield thing enough times already. PleSe don’t turn into Howie who drafts s wide receiver every year until he thinks he got it right.

  10. This video is an example of why I believe it is really hard to project high school hitters. Watch Benny’s hands. Don’t watch the ball. Just watch his hands. You see the hitch? Some might say, who cares, He is demolishing the ball. Sure. But it is front toss. How will that hitch play against a closer throwing 98? Or a good pitchers with a great slider? Neither pitch he will face in high school. And he is destroying high school pitching. But imo that hitch is a red flag

    1. Saw it right away too in a side angle BP session. It messes him up in a BP session. What will it do to him when he sees DeGrom?

  11. I read couple weeks ago that he had been working with some good hitting coaches who said he supposedly fixed it but the fear is that it is somewhere buried in his brain and will re-emerge sporadically. Pass Phillies have tried and failed at these high ceiling but flawed projects. College pitcher or bat.

    If you had a decent farm system then go ahead and take chance.

    1. Here’s another Phillies mock. I’m not repeating guys from any of my other Phillies mocks. It’s a way of introducing more draft prospects.

  12. ROUND 1: Ryan Cusick … is probably the most powerful of all the college power arms. In fact, the 21 YO behemoth RHP owns the highest recorded velo on a college pitch in the history of TrackMan. The 6’6″/235 lb hurler hit 101.7 MPH earlier this season. Cusick normally sits 95-98, and holds that velocity deep into his starts. He backs it up with a CB that is plus, at its best. The Wake Forest “ace” also occasionally mixes in an average SL and CH. This season, Cusick totaled 70 IP, 65 H, 32 BB, 108 K. He could probably step right into the Phillies BP and help the club out as a late inning reliever this summer, before being groomed as a starter again next spring. Most national mocksters list the Phillies as the first team connected to Cusick. They also believe he could fall out of the opening round if Brian Barber passes. You know what that means: Cusick saves the Phillies the kind of money they could use to slide down (and pay) a high ceiling prepster to their second round pick.

    ROUND 2: Josh Baez … is the reigning two time Gatorade Massachusetts HS Player Of The Year (BTW … Cusick is also a Massachusetts native). The 6’4″/220 lb prospect is a two way star with a commitment to Vanderbilt. However, the chance he ever sees college ball is next to nothing. The RHH COF/RHP has elite power and an elite arm. The Phillies system has a glaring need for power hitting OFers. Baez is just that.

    1. ROUND 3: Jonathan Cannon … is a young (won’t turn 20 until a week after the draft), long and lean (6’6″/215), projectable RHP from the Univ of Georgia. Cannon is a sophomore eligible prospect, and has thrown less than 70 IP in his two seasons as a Bulldog. He currently features a 91-93 FB (T96), an above CH, and two avg breakers (SL & CB). As he matures and fills out, all four of those offerings should just get better. This season, he went 63.1 IP, 56 H, 13 BB, 57 K in the toughest conference in America (SEC). Cannon’s playing on the cape this summer, and can return to school with three more years of eligibility so he’ll need to be over-paid here to get him signed.

      ROUND 4: Justice Thompson … is a 6’4″/205 lb “Do-It-All” CFer who just finished his first season at UNC after playing two seasons at Northwest Florida State JUCO. Thompson hit .304/.386/.444 this season. He’s got plus wheels (15 SBs/17 attempts). He will have to cut down the K’s though (27.8 K%). The kid has a plus glove, and is a no doubt CFer at the next level. In fact, he looks a little like a young Gary Maddox out there for me. Thompson is a Tampa native. He wouldn’t have a long commute if he plays in Clearwater.

      1. ROUND 5: Jalen Battles … is a 6’2″/200 lb University of Arkansas SS the Phillies are very familiar with. The club took the RHH infielder on day three of the 2019 draft after he finished his first season of JUCO ball. Battles turned down Johnny Almaraz, returned to McLennan JUCO for a (shortened COVID) soph season, and enrolled at Arkansas in 2021. The 21 YO San Antonio native started 61 games for the Razorbacks this year. He’s a plus defender at a premium position, and slashed .269/.371/.407, and hit 6 HRs in the SEC.

        ROUND 6: Hugh Fisher … is a 6’5″/210 lb LHRP from Vanderbilt. He succeeds on two pitches: a mid 90s FB, and a plus SL. The southpaw throws both from a funky delivery. Fisher is 22 YO, and a TJ survivor. He made it back to the mound this season, and totaled 11 IP, 5 H, 11 BB, 13 K.

        1. ROUND 7: Riley Tirotta … is a late blooming 23 YO, 6’3″/210 RHH 3Bman (who can also play 2B) from Dayton. He’s very athletic: plus runner (4.15 seconds from home-to-first from the right side), above avg power (16 HRs this year), and a strong arm. Up until 2021, the Indiana native had only slashed .242/.321/.364. This season, he broke out to the tune of .337/.450/.696. Tirotta is a real solid under slot selection at this point in the draft.

          ROUND 8: Griff McGarry … is a California kid who made his way across the country to throw for the University of Virginia. The 22 YO, 6’2″/190 lb RHP has been used as both a starter and reliever in college, but (because of high BB-rates) will probably work out of a MLB pen. McGarry brings the heat. His FB touches 99, though he sits mostly 93-96. His SL and CH are both bat missing offerings, but are inconsistant. This season, the Cavalier hurler went 43 IP, 30 H, 42 BB, 69 K. He saved his best for the NCAA Baseball Tournament. He registered 17.2 IP, 5 H, 9 BB, 26 K over three games vs Old Dominion, Dallas Baptist, and (eventual College WS winner) Mississippi St. McGarry was picked in the 37th round by Texas out of HS. He’ll go higher next week.

          1. ROUND 9: Erian Rodriguez … is an older HS RHP from Georgia. The 6’3″/185 lb’er throws a 92-94 FB T97. His next best pitch is a sharp breaking SL. Rodriguez is a JUCO commit, so he’s signable.

            ROUND 10: Dylan Heid … is a 22 YO, 6’2″/205 quick armed RHP from Pitt-Johnstown. The Malvern native (Greta Valley HS) features a mid 90s FB (holds the velo deep into games) and a CT. His CH is a work in progress. Heid has been one of the top pitchers in Division II. This season, he totaled 59.1 IP, 25 H, 15 BB, 105 K, 1.37 ERA, .126 OBA. And he tossed a seven inning no-hitter to kick off his 2021 campaign. In addition, Heid has been one of the most impressive hurlers in the MLB Draft League this spring/summer: 18 IP, 1 R, 6 H, 4 BB, 35 K.

            1. ROUND 11: Caden Vire … is a very young HS LHP with lots of projection. The 6’5″/175 southpaw won’t turn 18 until September. He currently sits in the upper 80s with good run because of his lower arm slot. Vire also throws a SL and CH. The Vancouver, Wash native is commited to Ariz St.

            2. Correction … 3rd rounder Jonathan Cannon will *21* the week after the draft. Just noticed that mistake. My bad.

  13. Hinkie don’t be surprised if some more northern states college kids end up getting selected. Much shorter season plus cold and wind kept numbers down

    1. Patso … I agree. This is a pretty good year for both college and HS kids from the Northeast.

  14. .

    Another mock w/o much/any intel on what the Phillies are thinking/planning.
    Eric Longenhagen and Kevin Goldstein place Gunnar Hoglund to the Phillies, but give no indication the team is actually contemplating picking the RHP recovering from TJ.
    They, like every other outlet, mention the Phillies interest in Benny Montgomery … but … like every other outlet, throws in the qualifier, “could just be because he’s a local kid”.

    1. With Dombrowski and Barber at the control board, I doubt that local sentiment plays much into the equation. I like Benny’s high ceiling, which would be enough for me. But Painter is intriguing even as a prep arm.

      1. Saw one mock a few weeks ago….Phillies taking the HS catcher from Georgia…Harry Ford.
        Now that would be a head scratcher for me.

  15. I like the Hoglund, Madden Wicks route and think it fits with Dombrowski. Starter that gets there sooner than later and slides in after the top 2

  16. Patso … Keith law is thinking right along with you.


    13. Philadelphia Phillies: Ty Madden, RHP, Texas

    The Phillies have been linked to Benny Montgomery and Anthony Solometo, because they’re local, of course, although I don’t think either would be a bad pick here. When Dave Dombrowski has had a first-round pick as a GM, however, he’s tended toward college guys, occasionally going for a high school guy if he has some exceptional tool like a huge fastball (Jacob Turner). If that’s still accurate, they could be Jobe’s floor.

  17. .

    Among the highlights:

    * There’s a whole lot of draft talent coming out of the Northeast.
    * Brian Barber has a great working relationship with Dave Dombrowski. They’ll work together to select players.

  18. It’s just about here. The most important date on the baseball calendar: the rule 4 draft! Dave Dombrowski and Brian Barber have the chance to restock the farm (it needs it). This go-round marks the first time in four years the team will get to participate in the second round (very exciting!). I’m positive the club’s first and second round selections will easily jump head first into the Phillies top 10 prospect list. Another two or three draftees will probably immediately find spots in the 10 thru 30 range.
    Here’s my final Phillies mock (all 20 rounds)!

    ROUND 1 Anthony Solometo … is the kid I’ve been hoping the Phillies use their first round pick on all along. The 6’4″/215 lb Bishop Eustace grad is the best HS LHP in the draft. He’s all wings and legs, and comes at batters with that funky long armed, weird angle delivery. He’s so athletic, though, he’s able to repeat all the moving parts, and consistantly throw strikes. Solometo features a 91-95 MPH FB (T96), a plus swing-and-miss SL, and a more seldom used CH. He dominated on last summer’s showcase circuit. He’s part MacKenzie Gore, part Dontrelle Willis, part Madison Bumgarner, and he’d help the Phillies to continue to “Grow the arms!”
    Solometo would probably come at some sort of discount because he seems to mostly be in play beginning at 1-19 (Toronto) if the Phils don’t draft him.

    ROUND 2 Josh Baez … is the reigning two time Gatorade Massachusetts HS Player Of The Year. The 6’4″/220 lb OFer boasts maybe the loudest raw power in the draft, and the Phillies farm system is in desperate need of power bats. The power isn’t his only plus-plus tool. Baez also has a cannon for an arm. He’ll end up manning RF as a pro, and put the fear of God in opposing base runners. The kid has a comittment to Vanderbilt. However, the chance he ever sees college ball is next to nothing. Brian Barber will have to go over slot to sign him.

    1. ROUND 3 Justyn Henry-Malloy … is a super athletic 3Bman with a top notch pedigree. The 6’2″/210 lb infielder plays for Ga Tech. Before Tech, Malloy was the top ranked HS 3Bman out of the Garden State (2018). He spent one season at Vanderbilt before transferring out to the ACC. This season, the 21 YO 3Bman really came into his own. Malloy slashed .308/.436/.558, and belted 11 homers. He also made pitchers throw strikes (40 K vs 49 BB/HBP) In addition, Malloy (whose uniform is always dirty) adds value with his glove. He’s got tremendous range, and a strong, accurate arm.

      1. ROUND 4 Luke Murphy … is one of my favorite pitchers in college baseball. He gets lost in the crowd at Vanderbilt with Kumar Rocker, Jack Leiter, and 17 YO freshman Christian Little (who will be a top pick in 2023) all making the headlines. But … here’s the deal on Murphy: He’s a 21 YO TJ surviving RHP with really good stuff, and plenty of projection. The 6’5″/190 lb Tennesse native packs a big FB (up to 97) with plenty of life, a knee buckling SL, and a CH that he hasn’t used much because Vandy worked him strictly out of their BP. All of his offerings should only get better as he fills out. Even better … the kid is a strike thrower: 41.1 IP, 24 H, 15 BB, 61 K in 2021. Despite the fact that he’s been a reliever at Vandy, I believe Murphy has #2 SP upside.

        1. ROUND 5 Kevin Kopps … is just what the doctor ordered for the Phillies: a quick moving, inexpensive, late inning reliver with big K #s, low BB #s, and a rubber arm. The 6’0″/200 lb Arkansas RHP is a 24 YO/6th year senior. He had a miserable truncated 2020 COVID season (ERA >8.00), and had to ask the Razorback coaching staff if they even wanted him back for 2021. They told him, “Yes”, and the rest is history. Kopps turned out to be college baseball’s premier reliever this season. He throws a 90-91 FB, avg CB & CH, but his signature offering is a NEARLY UNHITTABLE mid 80s CT (that looks more like a Bugs Bunny “splitter”).

          This season, Kopps posted an incredible 89.2 IP, 50 H, 18 BB, 131 K. In addition, The Houston native was available any time, all the time. He went multiple innings on back-to-back (sometimes even back-to-back-to-back) nights this season.

          1. ROUND 6 Jalen Battles … is a 6’2″/200 lb University of Arkansas SS the Phillies are very familiar with. The club took the RHH infielder on day three of the 2019 draft after he finished his first season of JUCO ball. Battles turned down Johnny Almaraz, returned to McLennan JUCO for a (shortened COVID) soph season, and enrolled at Arkansas in 2021. The 21 YO San Antonio native started 61 games for the Razorbacks this year. He’s a plus defender with a plus arm at a premium position. Offensively, Battles is more average. He slashed .269/.371/.407, and hit 6 HRs in the rugged SEC this year.

            ROUND 7 Damiano Palmegiani … is a power hitting 3Bman who can also handle a COF spot. The 6’1″/195 lb prospect has been nomadic. He was born in Venezuela, but grew up in Canada. He played for Southern Nevada JUCO this season after spending one year at Cal St Northridge. He’s scheduled to attend Univ of Arizona in 2022 if things don’t work out for him in the draft. He slashed .389/.521/.867, belted 26 HRs, and did a great job of controlling the K-zone (38 Ks vs 36 BB & 23 HBP) this season. So the odds of Palmegiani making it to campus at Arizona next season are long.

            1. ROUND 8 Tanner Kohlhepp … is a former highly ranked Wisconsin prep pitcher who has been college hopping since graduating HS in 2018. The 22 YO, 6’4″/210 lb RH thrower originally played (just a few innings) in the SEC at Tennessee. He next flew the JUCO route for a year, before suiting up for Notre Dame this season, and becoming their #1 BP arm. Kohlhepp, who delivers the ball from a lower slot, has got mad arm talent. His FB has hit triple digits, though it usually sits mid to upper 90s. He also packs a sharp, late-sweeping SL, and an average CH. He totaled 61.1 IP, 42 H, 22 BB, 65 K for the Irish this season.

              ROUND 9 Eduardo Rivera … has been one of the major eye-openers in MLB’s new Draft League this spring. Rivera is young and big and very raw. The 17 YO, 6’7″/237 lb LHP from San Juan, PR showed up in Williamsport throwing a 93-95 FB (T96) & adding in a sharp, but inconsistent upper 70s CB. The kid has no college commitment so he doesn’t have much leverage in negotiating a signing bonus.

            2. ROUND 10 Mike Antico … is a 23 YO (senior sign/bonus saving)CFer who just helped Texas get to the College World Series. Prior to this season, he spent four years at St. John’s. The 5’10″/200 lb LH lead off hitter has habitually controlled the K-zone, and been a terror on the base paths. During his time at St. John’s and Texas, Antico has BB’d (143) more than he’s K’d (137). He’s also stolen 85 bases in 96 attempts. He’s a career .310/.445/.508 slasher. In 2021, as a Longhorn, the North Jersey native totaled .273/.436/.489, 10 HRs, 41 SBs, 63 BB, 8 HBP, 43 K.

            3. ROUND 11 Grant Richardson … has been a human highlight reel for Indiana Univ. When the Hoosier CFer isn’t crushing baseballs, he’s running into walls. The 6’2″/200 lb LHH prospect has a nice looking swing that has produced a .346/.410/.589 slash line over the 2020/2021 seasons.

              If you’re not impressed with the bat, you’ll love the glove.

            4. ROUND 12 Benjamin Cowles … is a 21 YO SS who had a breakout season for Maryland in 2021. The 6’1″/180 lb New York state native has always had an above avg glove and a plus arm. This year, things clicked with the bat. Cowles went .287/.409/.632 & led the BIG 10 with 18 HRs.

              ROUND 13 Michael Rothenberg … is a kid who would have been selected last year if not for the pandemic, and the abridged draft that went with it. The 22 YO Duke catcher is a big boy (6’3″/215), but athletic enough to be a plus defender behing the plate. The LH bat is solid (for a backstop). He’s got some pop, and owns a career.867 career OPS.

            5. ROUND 14 Jared Dupere … is a 22 YO, 5’11″/200 lb LHH OFer at Northeastern Univ. He reminds me a little of Corey Dickerson (with a slightly more crouched stance in the box). Dupere has been an offensive powerhouse in the Colonial Athletic Association the past couple of seasons. He put together a .359/.394/.578 slash line in 2020, and went .343/.457/.781 in 2021. In between, the former HS football star slashed .327/.439/.594 with a wood bat last summer in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League. Dupere loves the long ball. He belted 21 homers this season … good for top 5 in Division I.
              Patso … check out the homer hat in the tweet ⬇.

              ROUND 15 Brooks Gosswein … is a 22 YO LHP from Bradley. The 6’2″/205 lb southpaw features a low 90s FB (T95), an above avg CB w/good depth, and average SL and CH. This season, he went 52.2 IP, 52 H, 21 BB, 53 K for the Braves.

            6. ROUND 16 Josh Hood … is a really good player who really got screwed by the pandemic. Hood is a Vineland (!!!) native who began his college career with a bang at UPenn. The 6’1″/195 lb RHH MIF was named a Freshman All-American in 2019 when he slashed .331/.411/.580 & launched 8 HRs. He got off to a slow start in 2020 (.263/.256/.342 in just 38 ABs) before COVID hit, and ended the season. Unlike the rest of college baseball, the Ivy League didn’t play a 2021 season. Hood did play summer ball in the 2020 Coastal Plains League (where he was very good), and has spent a lot of time working out here in South Jersey at the Baseball Performance Center. He won’t turn 21 for a couple of more weeks. If he doesn’t get drafted (and signed) next week, Hood will play for NC State next season.

              ROUND 17 Kobe Robinson … is an emerging 20 YO, 6’2″/190 lb JUCO RHP. The Chattanooga State CC prospect is rail thin, throws plenty hard from an Aaron Nola-like slot that gives arm side run to his lively FB (up to 98 MPH). His SL is above avg. Robinson has yet to develop a third pitch. This season, he tallied 54 IP, 45 H, 20 BB, 60 K, He’s been impressive out of the pen in the MLB Draft League: 11.1 IP, 11 H, 2 BB, 20 K He reminds me a whole lot of a (shorter) Miguel Castro.

            7. ROUND 18 Kyle Virbitsky … is a 22 YO Penn State RHP who may not throw too hard, but throws strikes (2.3 BB/9 in 2021). The Episcopal Academy grad throws a 89-91 FB that he commands well, a CT, CB, and CH. The 6’7″/235 lb Nittany Lion possesses uncommon athleticism and body control for a man of his size. He likes to alter his delivery with pauses or quick pitches to throw off hitters’ timing. This season, Virbitsky went 77.2 IP, 77 H, 20 BB, 88 K.

              ROUND 19 Marcos Pujols … is a wide body (Pablo Sandoval look-a-like) prospect from Dayton. The 6’0″/260 lb LHH DH/1Bman/LFer is young for the class (won’t turn 21 until September). Pujols’ prospect status revolves around his bat. The rolly-polly Dayton Flyer slashed .346/.415/.585 and launched a dozen bombs this year. Love This Guy! Brian Barber would make my draft by selecting Marcos Pujols on Tuesday.

            8. ROUND 20 River Town … is a day three talent with a first round name! The 6’1″/190 lb LHH RFer is a former All-State Louisiana HS player. He spent two seasons in JUCO (LSU Eunice) where he raked! He slashed .339/.535/.624 as a freshman, and .508/.634/.869 as a sophomore. He then matriculated to Dallas Baptist, where he barely skipped a beat: .326/.436/.519, 10 HRs, 20 SBs in 2021. He turned 22 yesterday. Happy birthday, River! 🎈🎂🎈

  19. 13. Philadelphia Phillies … Colton Cowser, Outfielder, Sam Houston State

    The Phillies have been linked to a myriad of players in this class but we think the buck stops with Cowser. An above average hitter with a potential average power tool, Cowser’s game profiles similarly to Michael Saunders. There’s a decent shot he can stick in centerfield, though the whole package plays in any of the three outfield spots.

    They also mock:
    Benny Montgomery to Rockies @ 1-8
    Ty Madden to Nationals @ 1-11
    Sal Frelick to Giants @ 1-14
    Jordan Wicks to Reds @ 1-17
    Gunnar Hoglund to Cardinals @ 1-18
    Anthony Solometo to Blue Jays @ 1-19
    Ryan Cusick to Tigers @ 1-32

    1. Michael Saunders had a career OPS of .701. If that is who they are comping him to, then hard pass for me. Saunders was an 11th round pick. That is fine value for the 11th round but terrible value for the 13th overall. Hope this isn’t the pick.

  20. 13 Phillies … Andrew Painter

    We still hear the Phillies tied to local product Benny Montgomery, but we’ve also heard them linked to prep righthander Andrew Painter. Perhaps that’s just sources looking at what they did last year with Mick Abel and thinking they would feel comfortable enough with the demographic to double up on first round prep righties, but his talent fits in this spot and we believe there’s real interest. Alternatively, it wouldn’t be surprising for them to go after a hard-throwing collegian like Madden if he’s available, or Bachman.

    They also mock:

    1-10 Mets … Sal Frelick
    1-11 Nationals … Ty Madden
    1-12 Mariners … Colton Cowser
    1-14 Giants … Benny Montgomery
    1-19 Blue Jays … Jordan Wicks
    1-27 Padres … Anthony Solometo

    1. I pray that they learned from Abel’s success and stick with the formula of taking a pitcher with elite stuff. Even if that pitcher is a high schooler. I would be elated with Painter as the pick.

      I would be very concerned if they took Benny Montgomery. Imo high school hitters are the hardest to project. All of the tools are important, but the hit tool is by far the most important and that is the hardest to project for high schoolers imo. The reason is simple, they don’t face elite competition. So it is hard to know who they will adjust to 97 mph heat and great sliders when they are facing 84 mph fastballs and bad curves. Watching swings in BP is so meaningless imo.

      But pitching is different. A plus plus fastball is a plus plus fastball. Doesn’t matter if a batter is in the box or not. Same with offspeed pitches. Same w command. You can watch a bullpen session and determine command for a pitcher. The rest is just teaching them how to pitch vs just throw. But that is mental and should be easy.

      Take the pitcher Phillies.

      1. I share your concern about Montgomery. I could be dead wrong, but he just seems like another toolsy OF with a questionable hit tool. But prep pitchers probably have the biggest risk profile of all, typically for injury and command, so that needs to be considered as well.

        That said, I would be okay going with a high-upside prep pitcher, provided he has at least one really good pitch and the mechanics are sound and don’t indicate undue arm/elbow/shoulder stress that projects to future injury.

        But I would not be at all surprised if the Phillies take the “safer” approach with Cowser or Frelick. Neither is a “sexy” pick, but I tend to prefer either to Montgomery.

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