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MLB Pipeline mock draft has prep pitcher for Rangers

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Jonathan Mayo has a mock draft out for MLB Pipeline, and he projects Texas to go with a prep pitcher

Tampa Bay Rays v Texas Rangers Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

A 2020 MLB Mock Draft has been released by Jonathan Mayo of MLB Pipeline, and he has the Texas Rangers going back to the prep pitcher well with their first round pick.

Mayo has the Rangers selecting Nick Bitsko, a righthanded pitcher out of Central Bucks East High School in Pennsylvania, at #14 overall. The Rangers have, of course, historically tended to be more inclined than many teams to go with prep players, and particularly prep pitchers, with their premium picks, though that shifted in 2019.

Bitsko doesn’t turn 18 until mid-June, and he was originally slated to be in the 2020 draft class, though he shifted to a 2019 classification this year. He’s a big, projectable, hard-throwing righthander who brings it in the mid-90s and has the build and potential pitch mix to be a major league starting pitcher.

The entire MLB draft process is in flux this year, of course, with no definitive date currently in place for the draft. The agreement between the MLBPA and MLB last month provided that the draft will be reduced to no fewer than five rounds, and will be anywhere from June 10 to July 20, depending on how MLB elects to proceed.

And with high school and college seasons being canceled for the spring of 2020, teams will have had much less time to look at and scout draft-eligible players. That would seem to potentially hurt someone like Bitsko, who was though to be heading into his junior season of high school, and thus has been seen less than most of his draft-eligible peers.