Casey Mize, RHP, Auburn
As an NFL writer, I know a lot of NFL scouts, general managers, coaches, and media draft experts who consult my mock draft and my prospect rankings. However, they rarely credit me publicly, but will say nice things to me privately. I want to start this mock by giving some praise to the MLB draft experts.
I have a lot of NFL sources, but zero MLB sources. I follow MLB and college baseball for fun, but I'm not an expert. For that, I recommend you check out the great work done by Baseball America, Jonathan Mayo and Jim Callis of MLB Network. They all are tremendous at covering MLB and the MLB draft. Now onto my MLB Mock. Last year, I had six picks right.
Mize is the top college pitcher in the 2018 MLB Draft and makes sense for the Tigers as a safe pick. He has polish with arm talent and has dominated the SEC this season. Supposedly, Wright is the favorite to go to Detroit.
San Francisco Giants: Joey Bart, C, Georgia Tech
Jim Callis says Bart is likely to go first or second round, and I have Detroit going with Mize. Bart is considered to be a good receiver while also having a big bat. Quality catchers who also can hit are a very hard commodity to find, so it makes sense that Bart will go high in the first round.
Alec Bohm, 3B, Wichita State
The Phillies could target a college hitter again. They took Virginia outfielder Adam Haseley last year, and he was a hot prospect last spring. This year, Bohm has been a similar hot prospect. He is swinging a big bat.
Chicago White Sox:
Nick Madrigal, 2B/SS, Oregon State
Over the past few drafts, the White Sox have been targeting college hitters who hit for a high average and get their share of walks in catcher Zach Collins and third baseman Jake Burger. Madrigal can flat out rake. Chicago is deep at pitching in the farm system and needs more hitters.
Brady Singer, RHP, Florida
The Reds add another elite arm to go with Hunter Greene. Singer could easily be gone by this pick, and Cincinnati likes to go with the best player available, per Mayo. Someone will fall to the Reds, and I think Singer would be their guy if he gets there.
New York Mets: Jonathan India, 3B, Florida
The Mets have been taking college players, and India could go this high after dominating the SEC this year. He was the conference's best player and looks like he could stay at the hot corner as a pro. New York has been in on college players, so India or South Alabama's Travis Swaggerty look like likely options for the Mets.
San Diego Padres:
Matthew Liberatore, LHP, High School
The Padres took a prep pitcher last year and could go for another with Liberatore. San Diego is said to be in on prep players with Liberatore being in play. Last year, I correctly had the Padres taking Mackenzie Gore, and Liberatore looks like a similar prospect.
Nolan Goreman, 3B, High School
Gorman was considered a potential top-five pick entering the spring, but he has fallen back some. He is considered to have some of the most natural power in the 2018 MLB Draft, and still should go pretty high. Unsurprisingly, teams avoided pitching to him, which put a damper on his ability to impress. Atlanta won't be fooled.
Travis Swaggerty, OF, South Alabama
Swaggerty could go as high as the White Sox at pick No. 4, and I think Oakland would take him if he gets to this pick. He's been a hot prospect this spring for his bat and ability stay at center field. Despite taking a high school pitcher last year, Billy Beane has a long track record of taking college players and hitters. Swaggerty would fit that.
Pittsburgh Pirates: Cole Winn, RHP, High School
Pittsburgh is comfortable taking prep players. The Pirates went with a high-upside pitcher last year, and they could go that route again this year. Winn has a power arm with upside and makes sense for Pittsburgh. The team also could consider other strong prep arms like Carter Stewart, Grayson Rodriguez, or Matthew Liberatore, if he slips.
Carter Stewart, RHP, High School
Baltimore took a high school pitcher last year and could go with one two years in a row. Pitching has held back the Orioles in a window in which they could have won big with Manny Machado and Adam Jones. I think Baltimore will continue to invest in arms. Stewart lights up the speed guns, and his strikeout style would play well in a hitter's park like Camden.
Toronto Blue Jays:
Steele Walker, OF, Oklahoma
Walker has been a hot college bat who is in play for a lot of teams in the first round. Toronto has a huge preference for college players. The Blue Jays took pitchers in the last four drafts, so it is time they add a talented bat to their farm system.
Triston Casas, 3B/1B, High School
The Marlins could use more hitting talent for their farm system, and Casas has been a hot name late in the draft process. Miami has hit the high school ranks hard, including Trevor Rogers and Braxton Garrett, over the past two years. Casas is a high-upside corner bat. He could be gone by this pick.
Seattle Mariners: Shane McClanahan, LHP, South Florida
In 2017, I correctly had the Mariners taking Kentucky first baseman Evan White, and here they could grab a player to go with him across the diamond. McClanahan has drawn some comparisons to Chris Sale and could be an elite, top-of-the-rotation starter. Seattle has a long track record of taking college bats in the first round, and a college arm would make sense at this pick for the Mariners.
Texas Rangers: Ryan Weathers, LHP, High School
Last year, I correctly had the Rangers taking Bubba Thompson. I feel good about them taking Weathers if he gets here. I think Texas also would consider other prep power arms like Cole Winn, Carter Stewarts and Grayson Rodriguez. I was really tempted to slot Rodriguez here. Weathers has a pro pedigree, however, and I think he could be a nice fit in Texas.