I will be manning the Arizona Diamond Backs. The D'Backs are seriously lacking true impact players in both the majors and in the minors. Their minor league system is a collection of one guy with a all star ceiling (Jarrod Parker) and outside of him a bunch of good players to fill out a roster. So going into this draft I'm throwing position and time table to reach the majors out of the window as I feel most teams should.
With the 3rd pick I'm just looking to take the best player on my board no matter who it is. At this point I like Cole far more than Rendon. I feel as if Rendon's size and his injuries however flukey they may have been is slightly worrisome to me at this point. I feel as if I am in a envious position with the 3rd pick. The consensus 1/2 is Cole and Rendon but a guy like Dylan Bundy isn't far off and it could be argued that he is the best player in the entire draft. With a fastball that has already shown to be plus and has plus plus projection, to go along with a good cuter, a power curve and a change up that seems to be a lot better than you would expect for a high school kid. I would have no problem taking him at number 3, I think he is going to be the guy that I will take at 3 if he falls to me, which I think he will just because while I do think you could argue that he is the best player in the draft the backlash from fans/media ETC for the Bucs or the Mariners to take him would be too strong. One thing I would like to point out is that while the whole Loux controversy last year might scare people off from pitchers in the D'Backs org I think it is important to get a clean slate and forget problems that have happened in the past and just take the player you feel is the best.
Now here is where things get tricky, I obviously need to sign this player or lose my pick and with the 7th overall pick in a stacked draft the last thing you want to do is lose your pick. So I think I'm going to throw almost all HS players off of the board since most of them have scholarship offers. A guy I would love to have at 7 would be Bubba Starling who just oozes tools in every way shape and or form pairing him up with JUP would be a scary thing. In saying that he is a HS kid who not only could get a scholarship offer for baseball he has a scholarship offer for football as well. A guy who comes from my neck of the woods (Connecticut) George Springer is someone who could make sense here high upside has three tools that are already plus and could have 4 if his defense improves. But from everything I have seen from him he has a ugly swing, and he hasn't really improved it that much since he has been at college. He is still striking out a lot more than you would expect for a college kid that is expected to be taken in the top 10-15 picks, and ultimately I question his hit tool add all of that together I think I'll have to pass on him at 7. If Trevor Bauer falls to me at 7 I think I'd almost have to take him, since I feel that he is quite singable compared to some of the other players on the board at this point. He has been discussed ad nauseam lately his pitch count his stuff Lince comps so on and so on. I for one am not too scared off by the pitch counts while it isn't something I would want him to do I don't think it'll effect him to the point where I shouldn't draft him. Some other guys I am considering here are Sonny Gray I really like his stuff and while some see him as a late inning guy because of his size. I never worried too much about pitchers being too small, if a guy has good stuff than he has good stuff no matter the size, unless he has bad mechanics which express that he won't be able to hold up that I will get worried. Matt Barnes or Taylor Jungmann could be two safer picks than the Bauer pick if I wanted to go real safe.Danny Hultzen could fall here who has been sky rocketing up draft boards lately. I don't like him as much as others though and I would take Bauer over him and maybe even Sonny Gray even though that is not the popular thought as of right now.
As for the rest of the draft one guy I really like who I hope would fall to me at 43 is Kolten Wong. While he does lack the crazy upside, he is just a baseball player. He has a excellent approach at the plate plays good defense at a position up the middle should be fairly easy to sign as well. I think him being small 5-9 and not being super athletic has worked to his advantage in some ways, he doesn't look to murder the ball and pull it. He just puts the bat on the ball and lets the ball go wherever. While it is somewhat unlikely that he will fall to me at 43 if he is there, I'll have a hard time not taking him.