The 2019 MLB draft is less than two weeks away. While the first two picks of the draft seem set in stone — catcher Adley Rutschman will go first overall, rest assured — everything beyond that is in flux. The Chicago White Sox, who previously seemed locked in to take Cal first baseman Andrew Vaughn, are exploring other options, including athletic prep shortstop C.J. Abrams and Vanderbilt outfielder J.J. Bleday. The Miami Marlins are also in the mix for both players, along with high school outfielder Riley Greene.
The Detroit Tigers have shown plenty of interest in Greene throughout the spring, but have also scouted the other above players. They have also done their homework on others, including Arizona State outfielder Hunter Bishop and the top few pitching prospects in the draft. They are currently on a four-year run of taking pitchers in the first round, but that streak seems set to end given the plethora of talented bats available at the top of the draft (not to mention a weak class of pitchers).
That brings us to our Question of the Day:
Who should the Tigers take with their first round pick in this year’s draft?
My answer: I would really like it if the Tigers were able to land Andrew Vaughn. He is one of the best hitters in the entire draft, one capable of hitting for both average and power. Baseball America put him at the top of the list in both categories, and I haven’t read a single report yet that doesn’t wholeheartedly believe that Vaughn will continue to mash all the way through the minor leagues.
Defensively, Vaughn should be a solid first baseman. Scouts believe he is athletic enough to move somewhere more difficult, like third base or a corner outfield spot. However, most believe his bat is so good that moving him to a new position would just slow his ascent to the majors. He runs like a first baseman, but if he turns into the middle-of-the-order thumper everyone is projecting, that won’t matter.
For a farm system so devoid of talented hitters, Vaughn seems like the perfect addition for Detroit this June.