The 2022 MLB draft is still a long way off, let’s get that out of the way first. Everybody knows that, especially MLB Pipeline, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t take an early look at the draft class. They posted two articles in the last two days looking at the draft. The first was the updated top 100 list of draft prospects. The second is their attempt at a mock draft for the first ten picks. The Pittsburgh Pirates pick fourth this year, so all of the names on this list have potential to be their pick at this early stage. Our regular draft coverage starts about two months from right now, so these will be the early names that we are watching.
In the mock draft, Pipeline has the Pirates going for Brooks Lee, a shortstop from Cal Poly. Interestingly enough, he’s being selected one spot ahead of Elijah Green, who some believe could be the #1 overall pick. Pipeline mentions Green has the highest upside in this class, but his swing-and-miss has caused a little concern. Lee is called the best pure college hitter in the draft, who has power from both sides of the plate. He’s a shortstop now, but they predict a move either one spot to his left or one to his right in the future.
The draft prospects list does not match up with the mock draft. Lee is ranked fifth on the top 100, and Green is ranked third. In between them is Jacob Berry, a third baseman from LSU, who went third in the mock draft. Berry is a total package at the plate, a switch-hitter with power and patience, who has adds value on defense. There appears to be a lot of similarities between Berry and Lee according to these two brief reports, so it will be interesting to see if one player separates himself from the other.
While there will be plenty of names to consider as the draft nears, these three names will be among the early players to watch for that fourth overall pick.