2012 MLB Mock Draft 1.0: Appel Holding Strong

The MLB Draft is just a couple weeks away, and that means it's Mock Draft season once again. While the new rules in the CBA make this year's draft as challenging to handicap as ever, there is never a shortage of rumors to work with when it comes to constructing a mock draft. With that said, here is Scout.com's latest look at who may be going where in this year's first round.

Mark Appel | RHP | Stanford
ANALYSIS: All signs point to the Astros taking a somewhat affordable route with this pick. As it happens, the best talent in the country may also be able to give them the best deal. Appel is a Houston native as well as an Astros' fan. Gausman is also a strong possibility, and Buxton has an outside shot.

Byron Buxton | OF | Appling County H.S. (Ga.)
ANALYSIS: Buxton and Carlos Correa seem to be the hottest names for this spot. It would not be a shock to see them consider Appel if he were still around, however. And, it needs to be noted that they have scouted Kyle Zimmer heavily all spring.

Max Fried | LHP | Harvard-Westlake H.S. (Calif.)
ANALYSIS: The Mariners aren't afraid to surprise everyone. There's some buzz that Seattle would take Fried over the remaining college arms as well as Mike Zunino. But, they are still very much on Correa and Buxton.

Kevin Gausman | RHP | LSU
ANALYSIS: There are rumors across the board on the the Orioles. The most reasonable one seems to be them taking the best college arm on the board. In this scenario, that's Gausman.

Kyle Zimmer | RHP | San Francisco
ANALYSIS: Every scout I've talked to has advised me that the run on the top college arms is going to be swift. With the attention the Royals have given to the college arms, I expect them to go that direction unless they have a shot at Byron Buxton.

Albert Almora | OF | Mater Academy (Fla.)
ANALYSIS: Some rumors are both persistent and logical. This is one of them. Albert Almora gets linked to the Cubs in every conversation I've had about Chicago. They have taken a good look at Correa and the college arms as well.

Carlos Correa | SS | Puerto Rico Baseball Academy
ANALYSIS: This appears to be Correa's floor. Shaffer, Gausman, and Zimmer have some buzz in this slot also.

Mike Zunino | C | Florida
ANALYSIS: A lot of industry sources still think they like Deven Marrero in this slot, but just as many seem to think Marrero's stock is in somewhat of a tailspin. With Zunino sliding every so slightly, he won't slide past Pittsburgh if he gets here.

David Dahl | OF | Oak Mountain H.S. (Ala.)
ANALYSIS: This is a really good fit. And, the Marlins have indeed been all over Dahl throughout the spring. All the college arms, including Wacha and Stroman have come up here as well.

Michael Wacha | RHP | Texas A&M
ANALYSIS: Although I've heard mostly prep names in this slot, Wacha's names has come up in a few conversations as well. That run on college arms could continue in this spot.

Richie Shaffer | 3B | Clemson
ANALYSIS: It's hard to imagine Oakland letting Shaffer slip beyond them. They've been linked to a number of prep players, but a lot of the guys they've been linked to are off the board in this scenario.

Courtney Hawkins | OF | Carroll H.S. (Tex.)
ANALYSIS: I've heard New York with mostly high upside high school names. And, Hawkins appears to be near the top of their preference list.

Marcus Stroman | RHP | Duke
ANALYSIS: Most of the college names get brought up for the White Sox. They'll likely turn to pitching, as most of the best college bats could be gone.

Chris Stratton | RHP | Missippi State
ANALYSIS: The Reds are not going to spend big, and I'd look for them to pursue one of the college arms. They are known to be high on Stratton. I wouldn't rule out a left-handed bat like Joey Gallo in this spot either.

Andrew Heaney | LHP | Oklahoma State
ANALYSIS: There's been a lot of high school names mentioned with the Indians, including David Dahl. But, I think that's only the plan if all the top pitchers are gone. In this scenario, Heaney is still available.

Lance McCullers | RHP | Jesuit H.S. (Fla.)
ANALYSIS: Washington isn't shy about making intriguing picks. McCuller's stock has rebounded in a big way in the last few weeks and some teams feel he's a steal in the middle of the round.

Joey Gallo | 3B | Bishop Gorman H.S. (Nev.)
ANALYSIS: The Blue Jays have had a close eye on Gallo's lefty power, and he fits their profile pretty nicely. Most of the prep arms have been mentioned in this spot, including Nick Travieso.

Zach Eflin | RHP | Hagerty H.S. (Fla.)
ANALYSIS: The theory is that the Dodgers are very likely to take a prep arm here. It's one of the strengths of the top of the class, and they have some good options in Eflin, Weickel, or Hensley.

Gavin Cecchini | SS | Barbe H.S. (La.)
ANALYSIS: There's been a couple high school names very consistently mentioned with the Cardinals. And, Cecchini's name just keeps coming up.

Stephen Piscotty | 3B | Stanford
ANALYSIS: This is just all too logical a fit, and the Giants have kept a very close eye on Piscotty. They'd love to see Wacha or Stroman in this spot as well.

Matt Smoral | LHP | Solon H.S. (Ohio)
ANALYSIS: If he's healthy, this couldn't be a more Atlanta Braves' style pick. Carson Kelly and Lucas Sims have been mentioned as well.

Toronto Blue Jays
D.J. Davis | OF | Stone County H.S. (Miss.)
ANALYSIS: Ty Hensley and Lucas Sims have been mentioned with the Blue Jays, but they seem to also be on fast rising outfielder, D.J. Davis. He'd fit well in their already loaded farm system.

St. Louis Cardinals
Stryker Trahan | C | Acadiana H.S. (La.)
ANALYSIS: Some teams see Trahan in the first round and some don't. The Cardinals are one of the clubs that absolutely value him that high.

Deven Marrero | SS | Arizona State
ANALYSIS: There's some speculation out there that Marrero could slide a long way if Pittsburgh doesn't take him eighth. If he gets to Boston, it would probably be too tempting for them to pass up.

Tanner Rahier | SS | Palm Desert H.S. (Calif.)
ANALYSIS: Tampa Bay has been mostly associated with prep names in the buzz going around. They'd have to be thrilled to get a chance at Rahier in this spot.

Ty Hensley | RHP | Santa Fe H.S. (Okla.)
ANALYSIS: You could say Arizona has some history drafting prep arms from this region. They've checked out the high school arms pretty thoroughly and Hensley's power arm may be the best one available.

Pierce Johnson | RHP | Missouri State
ANALYSIS: Milwaukee has been linked to some of the college arms, and Johnson may be the best that's left over at this point in the round.

Milkwaukee Brewers
Jamie Jarmon | OF | Indian River H.S. (Delaware)
ANALYSIS: This is one of the more off the wall early rumors flying around out there. Jarmon is an extremely polarizing player, but Milwaukee has apparently been all over him this spring and is considering him at an affordable price with one of their picks.

Walker Weickel | RHP | Olympia H.S. (Fla.)
ANALYSIS: This far down, the Rangers will wait and see what slides their way. The high school arms like Eflin and Weickel seem to appeal to them, as do D.J. Davis and junior college arm, Dylan Baker.

Mitch Nay | 3B | Hamilton H.S. (Ariz.)
ANALYSIS: Don't expect the Yankees to spend freely this year. The expectation is that most of the high school bats and college pitchers they like will be gone, but Nay is one they do like and he'll very likely still be around. New York is also high on a number of prep pitchers, including Weickel and Eflin. If they don't go with Nay, I'd look for a high school arm here.

Carson Kelly | 3B | Westview H.S. (Ore.)
ANALYSIS: The Red Sox have been linked to a number of high school position players and Kelly is going to be very high on their list.

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