2012 Draft: MLB.com’s Latest Mock Draft

Injury Updates: Eduardo Nunez & Austin Romine
Thursday Night Open Thread

In his latest mock draft for MLB.com, Jonathan Mayo has the Astros taking Stanford RHP Mark Appel with the first overall pick. It sure seems like their choice is down to either Appel or prep OF Byron Buxton at this point. I’d take Buxton, but no one asked me.

Anyway, Mayo has the Yankees taking Texas A&M OF Tyler Naquin with their first round pick (#30 overall). He has arguably the best outfield arm and the best hit tool in the college crop, making an absurd amount of hard contact to all fields from the left side. The concerns are that he doesn’t run/play defense well and may not hit for much power, so there is ‘tweener potential. Naquin can hit and isn’t a disaster in the field though, so he should through the system quickly. Mayo also reiterates that the Yankees have some interest in various unnamed high school arms, which we’ve heard before.

Injury Updates: Eduardo Nunez & Austin Romine
Thursday Night Open Thread
  • Larch

    Do teams really find an outfield arm attractive? Wouldn’t that be the least important trait?

    I know Mike talked about the hit tool, but I’ve seen OF arm talked about more in the last two weeks than ever during the season, Damon related discussions excluded. It seems like a red herring.

    • jjyank

      Well if the guy could potentially be relegated to a corner OF spot, the arm is pretty important. Good right fielders are harder to find because they have better arms.

      I agree that it is probably the least important tool, but keep in mind that it is also a tool that cannot be taught. Maybe you can teach plate discipline, or picking baserunning spots, or contact skills. But things like arm strength, power, and pure speed are just natural, and thus will inherently have value.

      Granted I know nothing about the kid, but having a strong arm opens up RF and 3B as potential options that are not open to other players.

  • A.D.

    Wouldn’t mind some Naquin at all

  • Jacob

    I accidently got myself attached to Addison Russel would love for them to draft him.

    • Cris Pengiucci

      I accidently got myself attached to …

      What happened, a night in Vegas you can’t or don’t care to remember? :-)

    • JohnnyC

      Frankie Piliere says Russell is a five tool player and projects to remain viable at shortstop. Lots of things in his favor.

  • Voice of Reason

    Throwing is definitely the least important trait, but it’s a trait nonetheless. An very good OF arm is worth a handful of runs per year, and an exceptional one (Jeff Francoeur) even more than that, so it definitely can make a difference.

    Comparisons are stupid but fun, and this guy’s kind of in the Ryan Sweeney/Mark Kotsay/David DeJesus family potentially (Naquin’s defense has been praised everywhere I’ve seen it discussed, actually). He’s not super excited but he’s probably the surest thing in the Yankees’ draft range.

    • Brian S.

      Blech. If we draft this guy I will be disappointed. We need someone with more upside.

      • JohnnyC

        Line drive hitters with dubious projectable power are not Yankee bats in a corner position. If he were a centerfielder, perhaps. I say Yankees look elsewhere.

      • jjyank

        I agree, but I also remember plenty of people in the Andrew Brackman thread the other day bitching about taking a gamble. It’s either a guy like this, or a guy with the upside (but also more risk). Tough call. I go for the upside/risk, but that’s the nature of the back end of the draft.

  • Dela G

    as a guy who has watched naquin a lot (since i am a 2010 graduate of a&m), the guy is the real deal. Not like that other a&m former flop, justin ruggiano

  • Fernando

    Going by the selections made in Mayo’s draft, I would take Lucas Giolito. Some other choices there would be Carson Kelly and Mitch Gueller. I also like Russell and maybe Trahan, but they were gone. Later on, guys like Underwood, Trey Williams, JO Berrios and Fernelys Sanchez are interesting.