Baseball Today and Tomorrow
The 2022 ZSABL Draft
The Bulldogs selected Pittsburgh starting pitcher Zach Thompson(B)75innings in the 4th round he will help to fill out the starting rotation. Uncarded SS Bryson Stott was selected in round 7 and has made the Phillies starting day roster and will see some action at third base with the major league club. Stott looks to have the tools to be an above average ballplayer and perhaps more while only lacking in power at this stage of his young career. We really like him. Infielder Jack Mayfield 3B(4) SS(8) of the LAA was selected in the 8th round he helps to fill out the roster requirements needed in the ZSABL rules and that’s about it. Guardians Bobby Bradley was selected in the 9th round. Bradley has a lot of power when he hits the ball but his 3year MLB BA stands at a meager .201 and his glove well let’s just say he is better suited for the DH position. Second baseman Andrew Young was selected in round 10. Drew did not make Washington’s opening day roster and while he has put up some nice numbers in the minors that has not equated to the big-league level. He looks to be only organizational depth for the Nationals at this stage of his career and doesn’t add much to the Bulldogs overall roster. Oakland outfielder Seth Brown was picked in round 12. Somewhat of an enigma he has put up outstanding numbers in average and power in the minors and showed good power in 2021 with 20 HRs for the A’s but the BA left something to be desired. Brown at thirty years old has never really had a full season of MLB experience which is baffling, he could surprise and put up some decent numbers for the rebuilding A’s. Detroit catcher Dustin Garneau .831OPS 62Abs will be the backup catcher to Grandal along with Kirk. Four relief pitchers were also added to the roster three As and a BZ.
The Bulldogs selected all pitchers with their first 5 picks and with good reason as the bullpen needed to be upgraded more than anything else. Stott was by far their best pick for the future. Amsterdam did what they needed to do early in the draft. With that being said, we would have liked to have seen a couple of uncarded players selected in the later rounds. Grade B
The Mets selected Oakland starting pitcher James Kaprielian(C)119 innings in the 4th round he will fill out the rotation. Kaprielian has been plagued by injuries most of his career and he starts the MLB season on injured reserve. With their second pick of the 4th round they picked Miami first baseman Garrett Cooper. Cooper has been a steady player for the Marlins and he’ll play the outfield in Brooklyn. Like Amsterdam they selected four pitchers with their first four picks all A relievers.
Brooklyn traded many of the draft picks they had acquired from the previous season for future number one picks. Seeing little offense in this year’s draft they will hope for better selections next year. The A relief certainly helps this year. An average draft by Brooklyn standards. Grade C
The Rojos with 3 lottery picks in the first round selected 3 pitchers starting with Toronto’s SP Alek Manoah(B)112 innings. Manoah had an outstanding rookie season at just 23 years of age and appears to have the making of a top tier pitcher. They followed that pick with Oakland starting pitcher Frankie Montas(B)187 innings. Montas has outstanding stuff and is the #1 pitcher on the A’s staff but consistency is an issue. Trade rumors abound hopefully he stays in Oakland’s pitcher friendly ballpark. The last of the lottery picks was Atlanta’s Collin McHugh(ACZ)64 innings he started seven games for Tampa Bay in 2021 but looks to be a reliever for the Braves. We will see how the Rojos use him. With two picks in the second round, they selected two up and coming starting pitchers first was Tampa’s Shane Baz(AZ)13 innings followed by the White Sox’s Dylan Cease(C)166 innings we really like these two picks. Baz is 23 years old and came up late last year and was impressive, albeit in 13 innings still there is a lot to like here. He will start the season on injured reserve for Tampa. However, he is expected to return after minor elbow surgery let’s hope that is the case for the young pitcher. Cease has been improving each year and could have a breakout season if he can harvest the command of his pitches. He has all the stuff but control has been an issue so far in his career. In round 3 they had three picks the first was used for a reliever followed by Miami outfielder Jesus Sanchez. Jesus has a lot of potential and is just 24 years old but he doesn’t have a lot of experience so a learning curve is to be expected. Another outfielder Myles Straw was taken next, he toiled in the Houston franchise for years and finally got the chance at some playing time in Cleveland and made the most of it. He batted .285 with 13SB in 60 games for the Guardians. He doesn’t have much power but if can get on base with his speed it plays into the Rojos brand of ball. He will have to make a believer out of us. Chicago White Sox’s first baseman Gavin Sheets was selected in the 6th round. He has put up some nice numbers in the minors and some respectable numbers in his first year of major league baseball. However, playing time could be an issue and Andrew Vaughn is expected to be the heir apparent to Jose Abreu at first base. In the 9th round they picked Cleveland SS Amed Rosario who will be their starting shortstop he had a solid season in 2021 and will look to improve upon it in 2022. Not bad for a 9th round pick. Rounds 11 and 12 brought two young uncarded catchers into the fold starting with Oakland’s Tyler Soderstrom. Soderstrom is just 20 years old but one of the top prospects in the A’s system he probably will end up as the A’s future first baseman with impact potential. Pittsburgh’s Henry Davis was selected next and is ranked as one of the top catching prospects in all of baseball. He’ll start in high A ball and should reach Double A before too long. With their final selection Queen City selected uncarded Arizona SS Jordan Lawler. Lawler a top prospect had a setback with a labrum tear but is expected to have a full recovery and could be their shortstop or third baseman of the future. Dispersed among these picks the Rojos selected a few relievers to keep them competitive for the 2022 season.
Queen City realizing they are a couple of years away from having a shot as a playoff contender had one of the best drafts of 2022. Their selection of young starting pitchers was outstanding. Along with some up and coming first year major league players and top notch uncarded prospects the future is very bright. An excellent draft. Grade A
The Crazy Horse selected a reliever with their first pick of the draft in round three. In the 4th round they selected KC SP Carlos Hernandez(B)86innings. Hernandez 23 years old was thrown into the starting rotation for the Royals due to injuries and performed admirably. His 3.68 ERA was his second lowest of his baseball career counting the minor leagues. He only pitched 86 innings so the jury is still out as to his long-term prospects. Still, he helps out the rotation for the 2022 season. With two picks in the 5th round they first selected LAA outfielder Brandon Marsh a highly rated prospect he had his first taste of big league play in 2021 at the age of 24. He put up some respectable numbers while not overly impressive it was something to build on. He had a good spring training and we feel the potential is there for much more. The second pick of the round was Cincinnati’s SP Reiver Sanmartin(ACZ)12 innings. Reiver came out of nowhere last year with two impressive starts however both were against the lowly Pirates. Still, he has put up some good numbers in the minors. He has two impressive prospects in Lodolo and Greene to fight off if he wishes to remain in the starting rotation time will tell but we don’t see it happening. In the 6th round they selected LAA SP Reid Detmers(D)a first-round pick in the 2020 MLB draft he was just 21 years old with less than one year of minor league ball under his belt when he got the call up to LA due to injuries. He is slated for the starting rotation in LA for 2022 and probably will have some growing pains but looks to be a good one with a lot of upsides. In the 7th round they selected CWS OF Adam Engel .832OPS 123AB. Though he may never reach the same OPS in the majors he certainly adds depth and will see plenty of playing time in Vegas this year especially as a defensive replacement. Nice pick. In round 8 they selected Senator’s catcher Riley Adams. Adams played well when given the opportunity in 2021 but looks to mostly be a backup to Keibert Ruiz. In round 9 they selected another LAA player outfielder Taylor Ward a first-round pick way pack in 2015 he had a monster year in AAA 1n 2019 but has yet to put it all together at the major league level and at 28yrs old time is running out. Miami’s SP Edward Cabrera was selected in round 10 he had his first taste of MLB in 2021 as a 23-year-old. It was not an impressive debut and he did not make the major league roster going into 2022. He will have to harness his control to be an effective pitcher at the major league level. Round 11 brought Tampa Bay’s Brendan McKay once a highly touted prospect he has been riddled with injuries throughout his career and once again just recently had surgery. He lost his shine a long time ago. Next in round 12 they selected Twin’s SP Griffin Jax(D). No longer a starter or in the bullpen or on the Twin’s roster not much to get excited about here. White sox third baseman Jake Burger was selected in the 12th, actually this is a better pick than the two previous picks but that’s not saying a whole lot. A number 1 pick back in 2017 Burger went missing for 3 years due to injury and covid, a flier pick and one we don’t think will work out but what the heck. Vegas skipped round 13 and, in the 14th, they took recently released Cardinal catcher Yadier Molina in his final MLB season he’s great defensively but the stick is not what it once was but still a capable backup.
Vegas one of the astute draft franchises in the league may have over reached in this one. Not that they needed much to improve the roster. Marsh, Detmer and Engel were their best selections and may be the only players from their draft on the roster next year. An uncarded catcher would have been nice. Grade C
The Black Sox’s had the 2nd pick of the draft and selected Seattle SP Chris Flexen(BZ)170 innings he had an incredible season for the Mariner’s and is a big upgrade for Philly this season. The question is can he repeat his 2021 performance? We don’t think so. In the 4th round they selected Miami outfielder Avisail Garcia .820 OPS OF-3 hard to believe he was still around this late into the draft he’ll slide into a starting outfield position. In the 6th round they selected Twin’s starting pitcher Joe Ryan(CZ) with 26 innings. Joe got his first taste of big-league ball in 2021 and did well, he’s not proven but we feel he has the potential to be even better in 2022. Detroit’s Eric Hasse C/OF was taken in round 8. Hasse has some pop and will split the catching duties with Curt Casali. Defensively he is a liability. In the same round they selected Washington’s SP Josiah Gray(D) once a highly touted prospect in the Reds and Dodgers organizations he has yet to live up to the hype. A few relief pitchers were also selected to bolster the bullpen.
Philadelphia certainly improved their ballclub and that is what the draft is all about. If anything, there are a couple players on the roster we would have released and gone uncarded to get younger. Grade B
The Rockers selected Chicago Cubs first baseman Frank Schwindel in the 2nd round. Schwindel labored in the Royals farm system for years and actually put up decent numbers but was never really given a chance with the major league ballclub. He was signed as a free agent by Oakland put on waivers and was picked up by the Cubs. Taking advantage of the situation he put up some impressive numbers with a .962 OPS. but with limited at bats. Is he the real deal? At age 30 it’s hard to see him duplicating the OPS still, we feel he will be a solid player and certainly helps the Rockers for 2021. In round 3 they selected another Cubby this time outfielder Rafael Ortega at the age of 30 he had his best season at the major league level sporting a .823 OPS in 296 at bats. The Dodgers starting pitcher Tyler Anderson(CZ)167 innings was selected in round 6 he adds depth to the rotation. In the 7th round they selected 45year old oops, 35year old Josh Harrison who has seen better days. In the 8th round they selected Brewer’s outfielder Hunter Renfroe. A nice pick this late in the draft although we were disappointed to see a fielding 2 rating. In the 12th round they selected another Cubby in Swingman pitcher Adrian Sampson(BZ) 5 starts he'll help to fill out the rotation. He is not on the Cub’s roster in 2022. Baltimore’s SP Chris Ellis(A) 6 starts 29 innings was taken in round 13 he also is not on the Orioles opening day roster. The Rockers drafted catcher Kurt Suzuki in round 14 he’ll backup Barnhart. They took a flyer with their final pick in round 15 San Diego’s SP Mike Clevenger. Clevinger did not pitch in 2021 and is currently on the injured reserve list in San Diego. Relief pitching was also added in the draft to bolster the pen.
The Rockers plugged some holes but the long-term prospects of most of the picks leave something to be desired. But they can worry about that next year. Some young uncarded players would have been nice. Grade C
The Machine selected Brewer’s SP Eric Lauer(B)119innings in the 2nd round. Lauer had impressive minor league numbers while in the San Diego farm system and moved up the ladder quickly however, his MLB stats up to 2021 were average with control being an issue. Lauer looked to put it altogether in 2021 after returning from a shoulder injury in the 2020 season. If he can stay healthy, he could once again put up some nice numbers. In round 4 they selected Detroit outfielder Akil Baddoo. Baddoo got off to a hot start in his first MLB appearance but slowed down a little in the second half of the season. He hit 13 home runs in all with all 13 coming against right-handed pitching. He may be better suited in a platoon situation but he is young and perhaps he can figure out the lefties. In the 5th with 3 picks, they first selected St. Louis utility infielder Edmundo Sosa who looked to come into his own in 2021 a nice young player with solid potential. They followed that with a reliever then selected uncarded Boston prospect SS Marcelo Mayer. Mayer was selected 4th in the MLB draft right out of high school so it will be a while till he sees the big show but he is highly regarded. A bunch of relievers were taken in the next few rounds before finishing their draft with another young shortstop Arizona’s Geraldo Perdomo in round 12. Perdomo got a small taste of the big-time last year at 22 years old he is an intriguing ballplayer he has a very good glove and looks to be the heir apparent to Nick Ahmed if he can hit.
A nice draft with some young players that should pay off in the future. A couple of uncarded starting pitchers would have been nice. Grade B