2013 MLB Mock Draft: Latest 1st Round Projections One Month from Draft Day

Adam WellsFeatured ColumnistMay 6, 2013

Stanford's Mark Appel came into the season as the No. 1 prospect in the 2013 draft, but is he the top pick in our first mock? Courtesy of Jake Roth, US Presswire.
Stanford's Mark Appel came into the season as the No. 1 prospect in the 2013 draft, but is he the top pick in our first mock? Courtesy of Jake Roth, US Presswire.

The 2013 Major League Baseball draft is exactly one month away, so what better time to take our first in-depth look at what to expect from the annual extravaganza than providing our thoughts on what will go down. 

But instead of just providing you with a standard, run-of-the-mill mock, we wanted to change up the formula a little bit to bring in a little diversity. I, along with my fellow B/R prospect writer Mike Rosenbaum, will run through the entire first round with our idea of what each team will do. 

We will be providing our selections for all 33 picks of the first round, with alternating analysis from both of us on each pick. Rosenbaum kicks things off with the first pick. 


Pick Team Rosenbaum Wells
1 Houston Astros Jonathan Gray  Jonathan Gray
Pick Analysis: After landing a slew of top-flight prep players in the early rounds of the 2012 draft, the Astros will have their choice of the top pitching prospects on the board this June. While Appel likely represents the "safe" pick at 1-1, Gray's elite fastball and plus secondaries give him enormous upside that will be difficult to pass over. Furthermore, because Appel is a Scott Boras client and the Astros will presumably budget their spending as they did last year, signing Gray could allot enough money to sign all of their Day 1 and 2 picks. - Rosenbaum
2 Chicago Cubs Mark Appel Mark Appel 
Pick Analysis: Honestly, this is the scenario that I think the Cubs want to happen. As great as Gray has been this year, and as likely as it is that Appel won't cut them any kind of discount, this front office knows that the Stanford righty is the best prospect in this class. An athletic 6'5" frame with pure power stuff, including a plus fastball-slider combination and improving changeup, as well as an easy, repeatable delivery and outstanding results this year, Appel will move quickly and put last year's debacle with Pittsburgh behind him. - Wells
3 Colorado Rockies Sean Manaea Braden Shipley 
Pick Analysis: After a dominant performance in the Cape Cod League last summer, the high-ceiling left-hander hasn't quite lived up to expectations this spring and has a missed a few starts with a nagging hip injury. However, Manaea's potential is undeniable, and he would immediately rank as the top pitching prospects in a Rockies' system devoid of impact arms. - Rosenbaum
4 Minnesota Twins Kris Bryant Sean Manaea 
Pick Analysis: Manaea is the one pick in the top five that I really struggled to place. On the one hand, a left-hander who has hit 97 with the fastball and plus slider in the not-too-distant past is a lock to go very high. However, thanks to a delivery with some effort and results that have been underwhelming this season, his stock has dropped considerably. I still say bet on the tall, hard-throwing left-hander to go high. - Wells
5 Cleveland Indians Braden Shipley Colin Moran 
Pick Analysis: Besides Gray, no pitcher has ascended draft boards as quickly as Shipley this spring. With an athletic and projectable frame, three above-average-to-plus-plus offerings (fastball/slider/changeup) and plenty of room to develop, the Nevada right-hander would give the Tribe another high-ceiling college arm to follow Trevor Bauer (ideally) in their future starting rotation. - Rosenbaum
6 Miami Marlins Austin Meadows Clint Frazier 
Pick Analysis: The Marlins usually go after ceiling and projection in the first round, which is why Rosenbaum's selection of Austin Meadows makes perfect sense. Yet in a league that is starved for power hitters, Frazier brings the lumber right away. He does need to adjust his style to wait on off-speed pitches. But his bat speed is easily the best in the class. Even though he will be a corner outfielder in pro ball, there is enough offensive upside for him to profile just fine in right field. - Wells
7 Boston Red Sox Colin Moran  Kris Bryant
Pick Analysis: Although Moran possesses arguably the most advanced hit tool and plate discipline in the 2013 draft class, there is some concern as to whether he can remain at third base long term. Regardless, the left-handed hitter will be selected for his offensive prowess and presumed proximity to the major leagues. - Rosenbaum
8 Kansas City Royals Trey Ball  Austin Meadows
Pick Analysis: For the second time in three years, the Royals will luck out in getting the best high school player available. The jury is still out on Bubba Starling, but I have little concern that the front office is going to change its philosophy based on that. Meadows has more upside than his fellow Georgia high school outfielder Clint Frazier. He has more physical projection and better all-around tools, with plus raw power, speed and defense in center field. - Wells
9 Pittsburgh Pirates* Kohl Stewart Kohl Stewart 
Pick Analysis: After failing to sign Mark Appel with the eighth pick last June, the Pirates have a great opportunity to land a pair of impact prospects in the first half of the first round. Representing the top high school arm in the class, Stewart also comes with serious signability concerns given his perceived strong commitment to Texas A&M as a two-sport player (quarterback). Therefore, if the Pirates are interested in the right-hander, which they absolutely should be, they will have to take him with their top pick so as to offer him a flattering signing bonus. - Rosenbaum
10 Toronto Blue Jays Clint Frazier  Trey Ball
Pick Analysis: One thing that we know about Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos is he will take the best athlete available. It has helped revitalize the Blue Jays' system, giving them the pieces they needed to make those deals with Miami and New York in the offseason. Ball is a two-way prospect with better present skills on the mound. At 6'6" and hitting the mid 90s with his fastball already, he could turn into a horse at the top of the rotation. If he becomes a position player, he could grow into plus power with speed and a plus throwing arm in a corner outfield spot. - Wells
11 New York Mets Austin Wilson  Ryne Stanek
Pick Analysis: It's no secret that the Mets' greatest deficiency, both throughout their farm system and at the major league level, is a lack of impact outfielders. Enter Austin Wilson, who has regained first-round status after missing half the college season with an elbow injury. At 6'5", 245 pounds, he's loaded with tools and represents one of the few college position players with considerable room to develop. Landing Wilson with their first pick would be a huge get for the Mets. - Rosenbaum
12 Seattle Mariners Hunter Renfroe Aaron Judge 
Pick Analysis: A Fresno State product, Judge has plenty of holes in his swing. He is huge at 6'7", so his strike zone isn't exactly narrow. But when he does make contact, the ball explodes off the bat. The Mariners haven't had a lot of success in developing hitters lately, so they need to focus their developmental energy into figuring out what the problem is and fixing it. Judge is a great litmus test, because he comes with a strong college pedigree and a few big issues that need to be corrected. - Wells
13 San Diego Padres JP Crawford  Austin Wilson
Pick Analysis: It feels as though it's been ages since the Padres had a legitimate shortstop, let alone one that's more than serviceable in the major leagues. In a class that's weak at the position, Crawford ranks alone at the top of a very short list. A left-handed hitter, Crawford has the projectable build, present athleticism and promising baseball skills that should allow him to remain at the position. The only question is whether he makes it to the Padres with the 13th pick. - Rosenbaum
14 Pittsburgh Pirates Jonathan Denney  Reese McGuire
Pick Analysis: While both Rosenbaum and I agree that Pittsburgh will go catcher, we disagree on which one. McGuire doesn't have the offensive upside that Denney does, but he is a much more polished defender behind the plate. The Washington high schooler does have some pop in his bat and the best arm strength of any backstop in this class. It is rare to find a high school catcher who is this advanced as a defender. - Wells
15 Arizona Diamondbacks DJ Peterson  Hunter Renfroe
Pick Analysis: The only deficiency in the Diamondbacks' loaded system is their lack of mature hitters. Although Peterson is a monster right-handed hitter with an impressive track record at New Mexico, he's far from a "sexy" pick due to his profile as a right-right first baseman. However, that doesn't necessarily mean he lacks early-to-mid first round value, and could represent a major steal for the Diamondbacks with their first pick. - Rosenbaum
16 Philadelphia Phillies Reese McGuire Domonic Smith 
Pick Analysis: Domonic Smith has a limited profile, as he is going to play first base in professional baseball. Usually that would be enough to scare teams from investing a first-round pick on a player because the offensive bar is so high, but Smith is an exception to the rule. He has huge raw power, a very smooth swing from the left side and plus defense at a position where that often gets overlooked. - Wells
17 Chicago White Sox Aaron Judge  Ryan Eades
Pick Analysis: The White Sox have a history of targeting high-ceiling outfielders (both high school and college) and high-floor college pitchers. Despite the internal promotion of Rick Hahn to general manager over the offseason, expect the South Siders to once again select a player who fits that mold. In this scenario, that player is Fresno State's Aaron Judge, who is an absolute monster at 6'7", 255 pounds, and profiles favorably as a major league right fielder. - Rosenbaum
18 Los Angeles Dodgers Dominic Smith Kyle Serrano 
Pick Analysis: High school pitchers who can throw a mid 90s fastball and a legitimate plus-plus curveball already are a rare commodity. The only thing that holes Kyle Serrano back from being a top 10 pick is his size. Listed at just 6'0", he doesn't get a lot of downward plane on his heater. But when you can bring the heat with a swing-and-miss off-speed pitch, teams are going to be more than happy to work with you to see what can be done. - Wells
19 St. Louis Cardinals Ian Clarkin  JP Crawford
Pick Analysis: With a majority of their pitching prospects having reached the major leagues, the Cardinals need to begin developing their next wave of young, high-upside pitching prospects. In terms of the current class, Ian Clarkin would seemingly be a fit, as the left-hander features excellent stuff (including a plus curveball with sharp, 12-to-6 bite) and pitchability beyond his years. - Rosenbaum
20 Detroit Tigers Ryne Stanek  Phil Bickford
Pick Analysis: If the Tigers have a draft strategy, it really comes down to this: Take the biggest, hardest-throwing pitcher left on the board. They could go the position player route, with power-hitting third baseman Eric Jagielo still on the board. But Bickford offers a ton of projection at 6'4", 185 pounds and has already hit the mid 90s with his fastball. - Wells
21 Tampa Bay Rays Ryan Boldt  Hunter Harvey
Pick Analysis: The Rays love raw but toolsy position players, especially outfielders. Although Boldt is from a cold-weather state (Minnesota), suffered a knee injury this spring and isn't expected to hit for much power at the next level, his speed, left-handed bat and ability to stick in center field makes him an attractive pick right here. - Rosenbaum
22 Baltimore Orioles Andrew Thurman  Andrew Thurman
Pick Analysis: Given Baltimore's issues with developing starting pitching, not to mention the unfortunate situation going on with Dylan Bundy right now, the team might be inclined to take a fast-moving, high-floor college arm to plug into their rotation within the next year. Thurman mixes his pitches well, commands everything in the zone and can get swings and misses with a very good changeup. - Wells
23 Texas Rangers Phil Bickford  Devin Williams
Pick Analysis: A 6'4", 185-pound right-hander, Bickford has been surging up the draft board this spring thanks to his lean, projectable frame and velocity spike into the mid-90s. He's still relatively raw compared to some of the other prep arms in the mix, but is exactly the type of lesser-known, high-ceiling arm the Rangers have coveted in previous years. - Rosenbaum
24 Oakland Athletics Matt Krook Jon Denney 
Pick Analysis: Last year's draft was a surprise for the A's, who took a high school player in the first round for the first time since Jeremy Bonderman in 2001. Assuming that trend continues, Billy Beane could opt to go for a high-risk, high-reward catcher. Denney has a very simple swing with great hip rotation and extension to generate plus raw power. He is raw defensively, struggling to block balls in the dirt, but the arm strength and athleticism are there. - Wells
25 San Francisco Giants Ryan Eades  Trevor Williams
Pick Analysis: With an excellent track record in SEC play and the potential arsenal of a solid mid-rotation starter, there's a decent chance that Eades won't last this long into the first round. But if he does, the LSU right-hander would make an excellent addition the Giants' growing collection of promising arms throughout their farm system. - Rosenbaum
26 New York Yankees Dustin Peterson  Alex Gonzalez
Pick Analysis: Due to the fact they have three first-round picks, the Yankees will likely have to play conservative with at least one selection to keep enough of their bonus pool money to sign some of these players. Gonzalez has a strong frame, good delivery, three above-average or better pitches and the ability to move quickly. - Wells
27 Cincinnati Reds Kyle Serrano  Jacob Brentz
Pick Analysis: The son of Tennessee coach Dave Serrano, Kyle is an undersized right-hander at 6', 185 pounds, but boasts a plus heater that has reached 95 mph this spring, as well as a one of the better curveballs in the draft class. He's a gamble as a late-riser this spring, not to mention the signability concerns associated with his commitment to play for his father at Tennessee next season. - Rosenbaum
28 St. Louis Cardinals* Devin Williams  Eric Jagielo
Pick Analysis: St. Louis likes two things in the draft: hard-throwing right-handers and college hitters. Without a strong pitching candidate to go in this spot, the Cardinals could opt to go for Eric Jagielo. The Notre Dame third baseman is an advanced hitter with plus power, strong pitch recognition and plate discipline. He also has smooth actions at the hot corner, with soft hands, plus arm strength and enough lateral quickness to be above-average with the glove. - Wells
29 Tampa Bay Rays* Tim Anderson  Chris Anderson
Pick Analysis: As I previously described regarding Ryan Boldt, the Rays covet top-flight athletes regardless of their background. That said, Anderson has come out of nowhere this spring with an electrifying blend of athleticism, loud tools (including a promising hit tool) and unexpectedly advanced baseball skills. Given the dearth of shortstops in the Rays' system beyond Hak-Jue Lee (who will miss the rest of the 2013 season with a knee injury), Anderson would seemingly be a gift for the Rays at this spot provided he makes it that far. - Rosenbaum
30 Texas Rangers* Hunter Harvey  Ian Clarkin
Pick Analysis: Like Toronto, the Rangers have made it their mission to target the best athletes and highest ceilings in the draft. Clarkin certainly fits their mold, with a ceiling that continues to move up thanks to one of the best curveballs, in high school or college, in this class. He's 6'2" and 190 pounds with projection from the left side. He could easily go in the first half of the round and no one would be surprised. - Wells
31 Atlanta Braves* Chris Anderson  Marco Gonzales
Pick Analysis: Regarded as one of the top pitching prospects in the draft class early in the spring, Anderson's stock has continued to fall due to a series of underwhelming outings over the last month-plus. However, at 6'4", 225 pounds with a mature arsenal and ability to eat innings, the right-hander still appears to be a safe bet to go in the first round. - Rosenbaum
32 New York Yankees* Robert Kaminsky  Connor Jones
Pick Analysis: The Yankees went with a hard-throwing high school right-hander at the end of the first round last year by taking Ty Hensley. With their second of three picks in the first round this year, New York will follow the same path. Jones offers good projection, a plus fastball, above-average present command and clean arm action. - Wells
33 New York Yankees* Alex Gonzalez  Aaron Blair
Pick Analysis: Gonzalez hasn't received the buzz as some of the other college arms in this year's class, but he absolutely should. By all accounts, the 6'3", 200-pound right-hander has solidified himself as a first-rounder thanks to a projectable three-pitch mix that includes a low-to-mid-90s fastball, plus slider and steadily improving changeup. - Rosenbaum


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