TigsTown MLN: Draft Predictions Part II

If there is one thing all fans like to do, it's to predict things. Whether it's the outcome of the game, or who may be the next call up from the minor leagues, it's just human nature to take a guess at what might happen. This article is no different, but I wanted to do this on a slightly larger scale with regards to the draft. I offer my selections as to whom the Tigers may select with their picks in the first 10 rounds of the draft.

Note: The first five selections are featured in last week's draft notebook, which you can read it here, picks six through ten are below.

This is all speculation on my part and will likely vary from other people's opinions on these players, but this will also provide a glimpse as to where the draft's strengths and weaknesses lie, so without any further ado, here are my round-by-round selections:

6. Robert Fish, LHP, A.B. Miller HS, California
Perhaps the highest mover of any player in the country since last fall, Fish touches the low-90's and also has a curveball. He has been dominant this spring, going 5-1 with a 0.36 ERA. He has 57 strikeouts in 37 innings, and has allowed just 15 hits. Fish does not have a college commitment as of yet.

7. Wade Kapteyn, RHP, Illiana Christian HS, Illinois
Kapteyn is a big-bodied prospect at 6-foot-5 and 205 pounds. His stock moved up last summer at the Area Code Games when he touched 94. In addition to his fastball, he has a solid changeup and a developing slider. Kapteyn nearly threw a perfect game and had 15 strikeouts in one outing this spring, and is committed to Evansville.

8. John Raynor, OF, UNC Wilmington
With a lot of prep picks, the Tigers could opt for a nice senior sign, and if Raynor is available here, he would make a nice choice. Raynor was rated the second-best in the Coastal Plain League by Baseball America, and spurned the Orioles as a 12th-round selection last June. Raynor has blazing speed, having run a 6.27 60-yard dash at the CPL all-star game, and also has shown nice raw power with a wood bat. Raynor has raked this spring with a .423 average, eight homers, and 37 RBIs. He is also 29-for-33 in the stolen base category. He has drawn 16 walks and has just 19 strikeouts in 149 at-bats.

9. Chase Anderson, RHP, Mandarin HS, Florida
Like Kapteyn, Anderson has a huge frame at 6-foot-5, and 235 pounds. Anderson had drawn interest from North Carolina, Southern Miss, and Indiana as a football prospect, but has elected to give up the gridiron for baseball. Anderson is 4-0 with a 1.33 ERA this spring, but hasn't been as dominant as one would like. Before losing his start to traditional power Wolfson in his conference's title game, he had allowed 19 hits and 20 walks in 26 2/3 innings. Anderson works in the 89-92 range with good sink on his fastball and he has a slider. Anderson has given a verbal commitment to North Florida University.

10. Josh Chester, OF, Cypress Bay HS, Florida
Chester is another late bloomer who got a lot of notice at the Perfect Game World Showcase in January. He is very athletic and has a plus arm (clocked at 91 from the outfield). He also has power potential from the left side and generates good bat speed. Chester has had a solid spring, hitting over .400 with three homers and 15 RBIs. Chester does not have a college commitment.

Taking a closer look at these projections gives a pretty good indication as to how the draft might unfold. With this draft lacking any type of potential franchise players, many teams may play things on the conservative side, which could be a good thing should the Tigers go the high school route, because the prep players will offer nice values in the middle rounds, and the college pitching depth should be good enough that the Tigers should snag a few of them as well.

Obviously, looking at these selections, there are no catchers or middle infielders on my list, and those areas are really down this year, so if the Tigers want to get a solid prospect at those spots, they will very likely have to overdraft a player, and I would rather have the Tigers go with the best player available on their board. You can always try and sign a player later in the draft that may have slid, or find a quality senior sign. Even though this year may be down overall, there are still quality players out there, and the Tigers must find them, because this franchise can't afford anymore setbacks due to poor drafting.

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