The Giants have three picks in the first round: Nos. 10, 22, and 29 overall. These projections are made to be realistic ideas of who might be taken where, with whom is likely to be available.
Back to (High) School
Drafting high-schoolers is always a risky but enticing prospect. Younger players are often ones with higher potential, but at the same time, they bring higher risk to never reach that potential. That's not to mention the chance they may return to school, as well. This philosophy is risky, but could be a high payout.
Bumgarner is a power left-handed arm, while Mesoraco is a very well-rounded catching prospect. Jackston would be yet another young middle infielder to fill the Giants depth at the lower levels there. One might also see outfielder Jason Heyward or right-handed pitcher Blake Beavan at the top picks.
A stark contrast to the high-schoolers, college players are usually surer bets and quicker to rise to the majors, but at the same time, they don't have the same high ceilings. A draft of college players is less exciting, but can be more productive at times.
Mills would fill an obvious need for a power hitter. Brown, meanwhile, would fit the Giants profile of speedy, athletic players. Schmidt is big lefty pitcher who is a bulldog on the mound with a well-rounded arsenal. The Giants could also easily go with first baseman Matt LaPorta at 22, if he's available.
Pitching a Fit
"Pitching a fit" might be a good description for what some Giants fans might do if the Giants went this route. The Giants have been very effective at drafting pitching over general manager Brian Sabean's term, and there is a train of thought that the Giants should focus on their strength. Perhaps, but a lot of fans have been vocal about wanting some hitting as well.
Beavan would be a strong high school arm to build around, however, and Weathers is a closer of high potential and likely quick movement to the majors. Carpenter is recovering from Tommy John surgery, but showed he has all of his natural stuff back.
Hitting Their Stride
The tough thing about going all hitters is that this draft isn't deep on first-rounders. After Matt Wieters and Josh Vitters (both of whom will probably will be gone before the Giants pick), the opinions vary wildly about the quality of those hitters. Most of the rest of them are risky high school hitters.
Dominguez has been highly-rated for his defense, though expectations of his hitting ability have fallen off. He's still a prized prospect, even if he's a project. Burgess is an elite power prospect, but he hasn't made good contact this year, and his star has fallen, but could still produce.
Looking for Tools
The Giants have embraced looking for toolsy players, and often the most talented players on a team find their way into the outfield, so three outfielders make sense in this draft.
Heyward is a highly-debated player that many feel is a sure-thing Top 10, but others feel he has significant flaws. Borbon was one of this draft's top-rated outfielders until a broken ankle sidelined him early this season. He is an athletic player with very good speed and usually makes hard contact consistently.
10. Jason Heyward, OF, Henry County HS, GA
22. Matt LaPorta, 1B, Florida
29. Aaron Poreda, LHP, San Francisco
Power is the most seductive of tools, both on the mound and at the plate. It's not always a reliable indicator of production, but it is the rarest and the one people are most likely to focus on.
Heyward has some of the best power in the draft, and LaPorta is second only to Mills among college hitters. Meanwhile, Poreda is a fast-rising left-hander who has the best consistent velocity among southpaws in the draft, despite really just focusing on baseball within the past three years.
10. Beau Mills, 3B/1B, Lewis-Clark State
22. Casey Weathers, RHP, Vanderbilt
29. Corey Brown, OF, Oklahoma State
Drafting for need is a difficult thing in baseball, as needs have to be projected, and projection is never a sure thing. However, the system is deep in middle infielders, has quality speed, and the lower levels lead their respective leads in pitching.
So what do the Giants need? Power is a definite thing, as is first base, which is one of the shallowest positions in the systems.
That's Mills. The Giants could use another closer candidate, and Weathers is the type of college closer that could move quickly. And Brown is a mix of power and speed that the Giants could use anywhere right now.
Picking a surprise in the Top 10 is nearly impossible, so we'll just go with Bumgarner. But taking Ahrens at 22 would shock a lot of people. He's known, but not often talked about. A high school shortstop, he's a solid switch-hitter with power and contact from both sides of the plate. In a year with a lot of good high school third-basemen, Ahrens could be the steal of the draft.
Alderson is a rarity in and of himself, a high school closer, but he's been spectacular. He could move to starter, but that's debatable. What's not debatable is that he's a 6-foot-7 pitcher who barely walks anyone and plays in the same town the Giants have their Arizona Minor League facility.
Sabean Says Goodbye (The All-Bust Team)
10. Jason Heyward, OF, Henry County HS, GA
22. Julio Borbon, OF, Tennessee
29. James Simmons, RHP, UC Riverside
If Giants general manager Brian Sabean is indeed on his way out, he wouldn't do this, would he? Nah… but if he wanted to play out a grudge, this is the way.
Heyward has spectacular bust potential, the kind that will keep people drooling even if he has problems. Borbon has solid potential, but there are questions about his ability to stay healthy, and a speed player coming off a broken ankle is a big risk. And Simmons is probably going to be a solid pitcher, but his only truly plus tool is command right now.
The BPA: Best Player Available
10. I Have No Clue
22. Flip a Coin
29. Your Guess Is As Good As Mine.
The "Best Player Available" method is easy to say and popular, but it leads to the most debate, because everyone has a different idea of who is better than whom, and how to rank hitters vs. pitchers.
In this case, the Giants would make their list, but then that is at incredible risk to the whims of other teams. Also, as the Giants will have a long wait between their last sandwich round pick (No, 51 overall) and their next pick (in the fifth round, No. 164 overall), the team would give up on any players they like between No. 50 and No. 150 in their list they really like.
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