While it has been reported that MLB will likely use the old method to decide the 2021 draft order, commissioner Rob Manfred still has the final say. Baseball America posted a mock draft today using the preliminary order if the commissioner decides not to make any adjustments. The 2020 Pirates Pittsburgh finished with the worst record in baseball (19-41), so they would get the first overall pick if nothing changes.
BA has the Pirates taking Kumar Rocker from Vanderbilt. That should come as a surprise to no one. He has been recognized as the best player in this draft class for quite some time. He’s also someone who we covered on Pirates Prospects while he was in high school, so he’s been a known name since 2017, leading up to his senior year in high school.
For those who don’t know, he’s a 6’4″ right-hander, with a workhorse frame, who throws high-90s with movement and command, which he pairs with a plus slider and a changeup that has plus potential. Some believe that his slider is even better than the fastball. It’s a two-pitch mix and total package that not only makes him one of the most advanced pitchers in the draft class, it gives him a strong chance to be a front-of-the-rotation starter.
Here’s video. Ignore the pitch count if you’re squeamish