2022 MLB Mock Draft: First round predictions and pick projections
With the MLB Draft this weekend, we take a look a the top of the candidates pile and give our opinion on which players will likely fit at which team.
A lot of noise is surrounding the MLB draft and with the same names being mentioned by the same teams, we take a look at where they are likely to land. With the Orioles picking first, followed by the Diamondbacks and then the Rangers, there could be some reshuffle at the top of the pile come the day.
Here is a look at how the first of three days and the first of 20 rounds of draft will pan out. The top ten comes with an explanation as to how I got there, followed by my picks for the following 20 picks in round one.
1. Baltimore Orioles: 3B/OF Jacob Berry, LSU
There are two natural big hitters in the top ten prospects, and while the O’s could go for Termarr Johnson, I think that their preference for college players will give Jacob Berry a shock first pick here. He hit .370/.464/.630 at LSU with 15 home runs and 48 RBI while trimming his strikeout rate from 19.5 to 8.9 percent.
2. Arizona Diamondbacks: OF Druw Jones, Wesleyan High School (GA)
Arizona will take the straight approach and go after Jones. They like Termarr and Jackson Holliday as well, so don’t rule those out, but with the Orioles going for the surprise move at one, the D-backs will just play it down the middle. Jones is hotly touted to go first, so if he is still available for Arizona, they will jump on him.
3. Texas Rangers: C Kevin Parada, Georgia Tech
Texas go for college players, almost to exclusivity. They have shown interest in both Parada and Brooks Lee, but with their long-term hat on, they will take the power-hitting catcher as the investment. With a farm system that is almost second to none, they will be looking for someone they can develop into a saleable asset.
4. Pittsburgh Pirates: SS Brooks Lee, Cal Poly
The Pirates are focused on college hitters, and Lee is just about as good as it gets. The Cal Poly shortstop hit .357/.462/.664 with 25 doubles and 15 home runs this spring and will go top-five.
5. Washington Nationals: 2B Termarr Johnson, Mays High School (GA)
Johnson is a great hitter, maybe the best natural hitter in the draft. The Nats will take a high-school kid and develop him long-term so look for them to swoop in on either Termarr or Jackson Holliday. I think that they will weigh it up and go on the prowess with the bat and take Termarr at the fifth pick.
6. Miami Marlins: SS Jackson Holliday, Stillwater High School (OK)
Miami will jump on Jackson, the son of former MLB All-Star Matt Holliday, who has just finished up a stellar senior season. They could just as easily take Elijah Green, who has the benefit of being a Florida native, but the well-rounded defensive skills of Holliday may sway it.
7. Chicago Cubs: 3B Cam Collier, Chipola JUCO
The Cubs are salivating for Collier and they won’t hesitate for one second to take him if he is still available. He is a wonderful left-hand hitter with a smooth swing and plenty of power. Still 17 years old, the Cubs will mold him into their vision of an offensive production line.
8. Minnesota Twins: OF Elijah Green, IMG Academy (FL)
Green has a lot of tools, power, top-of-the-scale speed and potentially elite defense in center field. But with the bat-to-ball question marks on him, he will fall to the Twins. He is interesting to the Marlins as well so if he goes there, then Jackson Holliday will go here.
9. Kansas City Royals: LHP Cooper Hjerpe, Oregon State
The Royals are the first team in the draft who aren’t exclusively looking for a hitter, so this is the highest that a pitcher is likely to go. And if you are after pitchers, then go with the lefty. Division I strikeout leader Hjerpe notched up 161 punchouts in 103.1 innings, and at 6′3″ the southpaw has three quality pitches, plus command and clean mechanics. Brock Porter or Dylan Lesko are others who might by taken by KC.
10. Colorado Rockies: 2B Jace Jung, Texas Tech
The Rockies are another team who like a college bat, and will look hard at who is left. They will take any of the previous hitters if they are not already gone, but in our mock draft, Jung is one of the best that there is.
11. New York Mets: SS Zach Neto, Campbell
12. Detroit Tigers: OF Gavin Cross, Virginia Tech
13. Los Angeles Angels: C Daniel Susac, Arizona
14. New York Mets: SS Jett Williams, Rockwall-Heath High School (TX)
15. San Diego Padres: RHP Gabriel Hughes, Gonzaga
16. Cleveland Guardians: RHP Brock Porter, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s High School (MI)
17. Philadelphia Phillies: RHP Dylan Lesko, Buford High School (GA)
18. Cincinnati Reds: SS Cole Young, North Allegheny High School (PA)
19. Oakland Athletics: OF Dylan Beavers, California
20. Atlanta Braves: LHP Connor Prielipp, Alabama
21. Seattle Mariners: OF Justin Crawford, Bishop Gorman High School (NV)
22. St. Louis Cardinals: OF Brock Jones, Stanford
23. Toronto Blue Jays: RHP Kumar Rocker, Tri-City ValleyCats
24. Boston Red Sox: OF Drew Gilbert, Tennessee
25. New York Yankees: OF Chase DeLauter, James Madison
26. Chicago White Sox: RHP Blade Tidwell, Tennessee
27. Milwaukee Brewers: 3B Tucker Toman, Hammond High School (SC)
28. Houston Astros: OF Jacob Melton, Oregon State
29. Tampa Bay Rays: LHP Robby Snelling, McQueen High School (NV)
30. San Francisco Giants: OF Henry Bolte, Palo Alto High School (CA)