Which college pitcher will they take THIS year? (Kidding. Kind of.)
Draft day, no matter the sport, is a chance to dream big and hope for better things ahead. In baseball, it’s a bit more complicated, since college baseball lacks the traction that college basketball and football have, and there aren’t exactly a lot of televised high school games either.
But for those of us here — those wayward souls heavily invested in the Seattle Mariners — draft day has been an annual event that we circle on our calendars. And that’s why we have this post, a live draft tracker to keep track of all our picks.
We’ll be updating it live with every selection the Mariners make.
Some pre-draft reading, taken from our nifty 2021 MLB Draft Hub:
- Joe Doyle’s 10 round mock draft, which predicts that the M’s will select UCLA shortstop Matt McLain
- Another piece from Joe about three dark horse candidates for the selection
- The latest episode of They Might Be Mariners, where Joe, John Trupin, and Kate Preusser get into a five-round Mariners mock
More to come shortly — we’ll have all the coverage here.
4:12pm PT: The most popular rumor right now is that the Pirates are taking Henry Davis out of Louisville at 1-1. Davis is a bit of a surprise (most mocks have tied them to Marcelo Mayer or perhaps one of the Vandy pitchers, namely Jack Leiter), but will likely allow them to allocate more of their budget for later rounds. It’s doubtful that this surprise pick will affect the Mariners down at #12.
4:16pm PT: Here’s a helpful tweet from @CespedesBBQ that compiles many of the major mock drafts — though not ours, what the heck, guys?
MOCK DRAFT WARS— Céspedes Family BBQ (@CespedesBBQ) July 11, 2021
here are the final mock drafts from all the most prominent outlets! everyone already got #1 wrong, so we're in for a wild night!!!
will be keeping track of who does the best pic.twitter.com/ohN6Ris1gG
Five different players (Sal Frelick, Matt McLain, Harry Ford, Ty Madden, and Colton Cowser) are mocked to the M’s.
4:17pm PT: Yep, it’s confirmed. Henry Davis is a Pirate. The Rangers are now on the clock. Will they call Jack Leiter’s bluff and take him, rather than let him fall to Boston at 4 (where he’s believed to want to go)? If you want Kate’s take:
A little surprised the Pirates went with Henry Davis, as a lot of the talent in their system is younger, but as I wrote in the @baseballpro annual comments for the Pirates this year, "behold the field in which the Pirates grow their catching prospects, and see that is is barren."— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:20pm PT: The Rangers take Jack Leiter out of Vandy. Man, it’s a bummer to see them take a good player. I’m going to keep embedding Kate’s tweet thread in this post after each pick:
The Rangers take Jack Leiter with the second overall pick. Leiter joins a strong contingent of pitching in Texas's system; choosing a refined college arm over the toolsy prep SSs avail. seems to indicate the rebuild in Texas is seen as further along than some others might think.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:27pm PT: Even with oft-projected top pick Marcelo Mayer on the board, the Tigers select a different high schooler at #3, taking RHP Jackson Jobe out of Oklahoma.
The Tigers built a pitching-heavy rebuild that's now mostly graduated but seem to be starting a new wave with prep righty Jackson Jobe; either that or they think Jobe can move very quickly.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:34pm PT: Ugh. I hate the Red Sox having good things happen to them. Marcelo Mayer is the pick, and when you’re taking a guy thought to be the top pick at #4, that’s not bad. Of course, anything can happen, and it’s hard to project 18-year-old guys.
Boston has to be thrilled about having their choice of the prep SS class to be the keystone of the next great Red Sox team after this contention window closes. They take Marcelo Mayer, because, duh.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:36pm PT: Aw, crap, the Orioles took the guy I really wanted to fall to the M’s in Colton Cowser. Seems likely that he took quite a deal, likely $1m+ underslot, a year after the Orioles went $2.5m underslot with Heston Kjerstad.
Orioles become my sworn enemy, taking college OF Colton Cowser, who I wanted for the Mariners. A smart pick for the O's, though; Cowser's on-base ability and hit tool will pair nicely in a 1-2 punch with Rutschman at the top of the lineup.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:46pm PT: Seems like the Diamondbacks are going big by taking HS shortstop Jordan Lawlar at #6. He’s a Vandy commit who will be draft-eligible in two years, so he’s got more leverage than most top-6 picks. We’ll see what they end up signing him for. And with Lawlar off the board, it seems like there’s three “top-tier” guys left who don’t make it to the Mariners in any of the mock drafts above: Kumar Rocker, Kahlil Watson, and Brady House. Will any of them trickle down to #12?
Diamondbacks luck out with Jordan Lawlar, my favorite player in the draft, at #6. Arizona's already strong system gets a lot stronger. I'm just happy we'll get to see Lawlar in the PNW playing for the Hillsboro Hops.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
4:54pm PT: Rumors started leaking out a few minutes ago that “things might get crazy” with this pick, avoiding the House/Watson/Rocker triumvirate. Right on cue, the Royals continue to march to the beat of their own drum, taking a prep lefty out of Connecticut who I’ve never heard of, Frank Mozzicato. The mock draft experts are likely scratching their heads — only two of the 10 aggregated by CespedesBBQ even have Mozzicato in the first round, and both pegged him at 27th overall. That one is truly out of left field.
And now let's get weird: Royals take prep LHP Franklin Mozzicato out of Connecticut at 7. Projected as a late first/comp pick most places so maybe a money-saving sign, but also the Royals, more than most teams, get invested in specific players, so they must love him.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 11, 2021
5:01pm PT: The Rockies are taking Kate’s favorite, Benny Montgomery, which means we’re very close to one of Kumar Rocker/Brady House/Kahlil Watson lasting until the M’s pick. I’m getting overly excited. I’m ready to get hurt again.
Pick 8 is prep OF Benny Montgomery to the Rockies. Idiosyncratic swing, idiosyncratic guy, kind of a unicorn; the rebuilding Rockies will have plenty of time to work with him.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 12, 2021
5:08pm PT: I hate the Angels so much. BUT THEY DIDN’T TAKE KUMAR ROCKER THANK GOODNESS! They took a righty out of the MAC, Sam Bachman.
Pick 9: Angels go college pitching but not Kumar: they take Sam Bachman out of Miami (OH). A solid, fast-moving pick as the Angels try to jam open their contention window for as long as possible.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 12, 2021
5:10pm PT: The Mets ended our long national nightmare. They didn’t tank but they still got themselves Kumar Rocker out of Vandy. Wonderful. Now I can happily root for him without feeling conflicted!
There goes Kumar at 10. I will be very happy to cheer for Kumar Rocker, New York Met.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 12, 2021
5:22pm PT: The Nats followed up the Rocker pick by taking Brady House at #11. The Mariners are officially on the clock, and Kahlil Watson — thought to be a top-5 pick heading into the draft — is on the board. Any chance this is Kyle Lewis v2? Will the Mariners pull the trigger? Or will they stick with one of the players most commonly connected to the org (Sal Frelick, Matt McLain, Harry Ford, Ty Madden)?
Brady House to the other Washington with pick 11. Mariners pick next. Khalil Watson still on the board. I am allowing myself to hope.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 12, 2021
5:28pm PT: With the #12 pick in the 2021 MLB Draft, the Seattle Mariners select Harry Ford, catcher, from North Cobb HS in Georgia.
We wrote this on Harry Ford in February. Though he’s listed as a catcher, he has a real shot to stick in the outfield too. This is the first HS player taken by the Mariners in the first round since Jerry Dipoto took over as GM.
Mariners take prep C Harry Ford with the 12th overall pick. Not only a prep, but a prep catcher! My wig is snatched to the cosmos.— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) July 12, 2021
We’ll keep filling this out with more info on Harry Ford, but I’m going to stop the pick-by-pick updates for now. This is the Mariners’ only selection on Day One.
5:54pm PT: Three players have flown off the board since we last checked in: HS righty Andrew Painter to the Phillies (he’s 6’7”!), national champion pitcher Will Bednar to the Giants, and BC outfielder Sal Frelick to the Brewers. Frelick was one of the names connected to the M’s. At this point, if Kahlil Watson doesn’t go to the Reds (who have a surplus of picks and could likely go well overslot), I might think he’d honor his college commitment to NC State.
5:59pm PT: Welp, I guess this is why I’m not a draft expert. Watson goes 16th to the Marlins. If he’d gone 5th (as many once projected), his slot value would be $6.18m; at 16th, slot is “just” $3.75m. Even if he goes overslot, that’s a multi-million dollar difference. Oof.
6:38pm PT: Over here at LL HQ (though don’t worry, we’re fully distributed these days anyway), we’re all studying up on Harry Ford, so apologies for less commentary on these picks:
- #17: The Reds took Matt McLain out of UCLA. He was a first-rounder in 2018, bet on himself, and lived out a lifelong dream of playing SS at Jackie Robinson Field at UCLA. Pretty cool stuff!
- #18: The Cardinals nabbed UCSB pitcher Michael McGreevy. I got nothing to say here.
- #19: The Blue Jays took Gunnar Hoglund, who tore his UCL earlier this year and dropped down draft boards as a result. He’s a top-10 talent if healthy, though that’s a big if.
- #20: The Yankees selected Trey Sweeney, a shortstop out of Eastern Illinois who’s an analytical darling. I hate him already.
- #21: The Cubs took the first college lefty of the draft in Jordan Wicks, a 6’3” southpaw out of Kansas State.
7:05pm PT: We’ve got another group of picks (sorry, I’m multitasking while watching the NBA Finals):
- #22: The White Sox followed up the Cubs’ pick by taking a high school shortstop, Colson Montgomery.
- #23: Cleveland took the first college senior of the draft: East Carolina righty Gavin Williams.
- #24: The Braves took Wake Forest righty Ryan Cusick.
- #25: OKAY GET THIS. The A’s took Max Muncy — no, not that Max Muncy, despite the fact that they have the same first name, last name, and birthday (August 25)! That’s a wild coincidence. This Max Muncy is a high school shortstop out of Thousand Oaks, CA.
- #26: The Twins made it two straight prepsters by taking Chase Petty (who surely moonlights either as a NASCAR driver or a country music singer) from New Jersey (okay, based on that, neither of those are very likely).
7:23pm PT: Three straight high school picks here makes it five straight guys out of HS:
- #27: Jackson Merrill, SS from Maryland, goes to the Padres
- #28: Carson Williams, SS from California, goes to the Rays (because they really need a new shortstop!)
- #29: Maddux Bruns, a southpaw out of the state of Alabama, goes to the Dodgers
7:53pm PT: Wait, we’re not done yet! We’ve got a handful of comp/competitive balance picks:
- #30: Jay Allen, a high school outfielder from Florida, goes to the Reds
- #31: Joe Mack, a high school catcher from New York, goes to the Marlins. Interesting that they’re going high school when their first pick (Kahlil Watson) is likely well overslot.
- #32: Ty Madden, a UT pitcher who some thought might go as high as #12 to the Mariners, was picked by the Tigers
- #33: Tyler Black, an outfielder from Wright State, went to the Brewers, giving them two outfielders with their first two picks
- #34: Cooper Kinney, a high school second baseman, went to the Rays. Incredibly uninformed draft opinion: a guy who played second base in high school (not shortstop) feels like a bad sign to me.
- #35: Matheu Nelson, a college catcher out of Florida State (ever heard that before?), went to the Reds
- #36: And finishing things up, the Twins selected Noah Miller out of Ozaukee HS in Wisconsin
That’s all, folks! Thanks for popping in. Come join tomorrow as we get rounds 2–10.