Baseball America has a new mock draft out — what is essentially their final version, though there will probably be some updates on Sunday — and they have the Texas Rangers taking Georgia Tech catcher Kevin Parada at #3.
The headline to this post, incidentally, I made as kind of a joke, since every player at the top of the draft boards, and every player the Rangers have been linked to, is a position player. In this mock a pitcher doesn’t go off the board until the University of Alabama’s lefty starter Connor Prielipp is projected to Detroit at #12, followed by Kumar Rocker at #13 and Michigan prep righthander Brock Porter at #14. It is certainly possible that the Rangers take a pitcher at #3, but it would be a major upset if that happened.
BA’s take on what the Rangers will do at #3 is very similar to what MLB Pipeline had in their mock draft from yesterday — Texas would take Druw Jones or Jackson Holliday if either of those two players drop, but if they go in the top two picks, Texas would likely go with either Parada or Florida prep outfielder Elijah Green.
There continues to be talk that the Orioles, at #1, are considering taking Termarr Johnson in order to go well under slot and spend more on later above-slot picks, something they have done in the past. If that happens, then either Jones or Holliday would be available, and we will get to see if the reports that Texas would go with one of them if they fall are correct.
Parada and Cal-Poly infielder Brooks Lee are the two college bats that have been linked most often to Texas, with Parada seeming to be the one the Rangers have the most interest in, based on reports so far. Parada would give them a legitimate power bat in the upper levels of the minors, something the organization doesn’t really have right now, and the bat is seen as being able to play at any position, so even if Parada does have to move off of catcher, it shouldn’t be a major issue.