MLB Draft Update: 3/26

Predicting the draft picks is almost as difficult as predicting the eventual career paths of these prospects. These listings can, and will change on a week by week and even a day by day basis. It is always fun to try to guess the expected draft order, so let's give it a shot.

No.1 - Arizona Diamondbacks
Selection: Justin Upton, SS/OF, R/R, 6'2", 180 lbs., Great Bridge HS, Chesapeake, Va.
2005: Season just under way.
Why: Upton's senior season is just getting underway and the statistics should be rolling in soon. Still the likely number one pick.

No. 2 - Kansas City Royals
Selection: Alex Gordon, 3b, L/R, 6'1", 205, U. of Nebraska
2005 : .427/.566/.840, 75 AB, 7 HR, 22 RBI, 11 SB, 21 BB, 10 K
Why: After a slow start, Gordon has been unstoppable with 24 hits in his last 45 at-bats, five of which were homers. It wouldn't be a big surprise to see him taken with the top pick.

No. 3 - Seattle Mariners
Selection: Cameron Maybin, OF, R/R, 6'4", 200, T.C. Roberson HS, Asheville, N.C.
2005: 1.000/1.000/2.000, 3 AB, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 3 SB
Why: Look at those numbers! Alright, that stat line looks a little silly but his season just recently started. Give him time and we'll get a better understanding of what he may be able to do.

No. 4 - Washington Nationals
Selection: Mike Pelfrey, RHP, 6'7", 215, Wichita State U.
2005: 3-2, 1.80 ERA, 45 IP, 42 K, 12 BB
Why: Pelfrey has bounced back since a relatively slow start to his season. With his stuff, it is a little surprising that he hasn't posted more strikeouts. He needs to keep an eye out for…

No. 5 - Milwaukee Brewers
Selection: Luke Hochevar, RHP, 6'4", 205, U. of Tennessee
2005: 5-1, 1.47 ERA, 43 IP, 54 K, 9 BB
Why: Hochevar has been hit a little harder of late but a 1.47 ERA is nothing to scoff at. With 11.3 strikeouts per nine innings and a 6-1 K-BB ratio, Hochevar is having the best season of any of the top pitchers. It is yet to be seen if that will allow him to pass Pelfrey on draft boards.

No. 6 - Toronto Blue Jays
Selection: Jeff Clement, C, L/R, 6'1", 205, USC
2005: .308/.471/.600, 65 AB, 4 HR, 18 RBI, 15 BB, 12 K
Why: Like Gordon, Clement has picked up his offense and is beginning to show the tools that make him a top talent. He is still clearly the best catcher available and will help a team sooner rather than later.

No. 7 - Colorado Rockies
Selection: Wade Townsend, RHP, 6'3", 230, Rice U.
2005: N/A
Why: Townsend is in the same position that he was in last year; getting ready for the draft. He's been at home, working hard to get in shape and giving pitching lessons on the side. Did he turn down the Orioles' $1.7 million offer because he can make more giving lessons?

No. 8 - Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Selection: Tyler Greene, SS, R/R, 6'2", 190, Georgia Tech
2005: .344/.433/.589, 90 AB, 4 HR, 29 RBI, 11 SB, 12 BB, 11 K
Why: Greene, known for his outstanding defense, has started to turn it on at the plate. All four of his homers have come in his last 60 at-bats. He has shown good speed and athleticism with his 11 stolen bases. If he can improve his plate discipline he will solidify his placement on the board.

No. 9 - New York Mets
Selection: John Mayberry Jr., 1B/OF, R/R, 6'5", 230, Stanford U.
2005: .354/.446/.557, 79 AB, 4 HR, 21 RBI, 12 BB, 11 K
Why: Mayberry's selection here breaks a rule of the draft. Typically teams will draft the best player available but this may be more of a need pick. Ryan Zimmerman may be the BPA here but with his almost certainty to stick at 3B (where he gets most of his value) and David Wright in the way, Mayberry is the current choice.

No. 10 - Detroit Tigers
Selection: Ryan Zimmerman, 3B, R/R, 6'3", 210, Virginia
2005: .411/.471/.633, 90 AB, 3 HR, 33 RBI, 9 BB, 5 K
Why: As I alluded to above, Zimmerman may be the best defensive third baseman in the class. Combine that with his solid offensive output and excellent contact skills (just five strikeouts thus far), he definitely has top-10 potential.

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